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BL. JAMES THOMPSON, PRIEST AND MARTYR

BL. JAMES THOMPSON, PRIEST AND MARTYR

BLESSED JAMES THOMPSON, PRIEST AND MARTYR – MEMORIAL: NOVEMBER 28

Bl. James Thompson, studying for the priesthood at Douai, fell very ill in 1580 and was ordained – he was barely able to stand – by dispensation from Rome. He recovered and was sent back to England to the mission. He was arrested in York for being a priest and hung at Tyburn on 28th November 1582. Whilst hanging, he was seen to distinctly beat his breast and afterwards to make the Sign of the Cross.

Blessed Fr Thompson, pray for us.

 

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ST SYLVESTER GOZZOLINI, ABBOT

ST SYLVESTER GOZZOLINI, ABBOT

ST SYLVESTER GOZZOLINI, ABBOT – MEMORIAL: NOVEMBER 26

Sylvester, born of a noble family at Osimo, in Picenum, was remarkable, even as a boy, for his keen intelligence and upright conduct. Being duly instructed in sacred learning and made a Canon, he benefited his people by his example and his sermons. At the funeral of a relative, who was also a nobleman and a very handsome person, on seeing the disfigured corpse in the open tomb, he said: “What this man was, I am now; what he is now, I shall be.”

WITH THE DESIRE FOR GREATER PERFECTION, HE SPENT HIMSELF IN VIGILS, PRAYER AND FASTING 

He soon retired to a lonely place with the desire for greater perfection, and there spent himself in vigils, prayer and fasting. To hide himself better from men, he kept changing his dwelling place. At length, he arrived at Monte Fano, at that time a solitary place, built a church in honour of St Benedict and laid the foundations of the Congregation of Sylvestrines. There he strengthened the monks with his wonderful holiness. He shone with the spirit of prophecy, and possessed power over the demons and other gifts, which he always tried to hide with deep humility. He fell asleep in the Lord in the year of salvation 1267.

PRAYER:

Most merciful God, who, when the holy Abbot Sylvester was devoutly meditating upon the vanity of this world beside an open grave, graciously willed to call him into the desert and enrich him with unusual merits, we humbly pray that, following his example, despising the things of earth, we may thoroughly enjoy your everlasting presence. Through our Lord…

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

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ST CATHERINE OF ALEXANDRIA, VIRGIN AND MARTYR

ST CATHERINE OF ALEXANDRIA, VIRGIN AND MARTYR

ST CATHERINE OF ALEXANDRIA, VIRGIN AND MARTYR – MEMORIAL: NOVEMBER 25

Catherine, a noble virgin of Alexandria, joined an ardent faith to her studies of the liberal arts. When she saw many Christians seized for punishment by order of Maximin, she approached Maximin himself and boldly declared that faith in Christ is necessary for salvation.

HE TRIED TO TURN HER AWAY FROM CHRIST

Astonished at her wisdom, the tyrant ordered her to be kept in prison. Then he summoned learned men from everywhere to try to persuade her and to convert her to the worship of idols. But the opposite effect happened.

THE OPPOSITE EFFECT HAPPENED

For many of these men were convinced by the most wise arguments of Catherine, embraced the faith in Christ, and would not have hesitated to die for it. Wherefore Maximin tried, first by flattery, then by torments, to turn her away from her belief; but when he saw that these had no effect, he ordered her to be beheaded.

PRAYER:

O God, who gave the law to Moses on Sinai’s height and through your holy angels miraculously placed there the body of blessed Catherine, your Virgin and Martyr; grant, we beseech you, that by her merits and intercession we may reach that towering eminence which is Christ. Who with you…

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

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THEE, LORD OF EVERY AGE, WE SING (HYMN)

THEE, LORD OF EVERY AGE, WE SING (HYMN)

Thee, Lord of every age, we sing:

Thee, Christ, we hail the nations’ King;

Confess thy right thy realm to find

Within the hearts of all mankind.

 

The hate-swayed mob cries, pride-enticed,

They will not have thy kingdom, Christ;

But we exultant round thy throne

Thy reign o’er all creation own.

 

O Christ, our Prince, that bringest peace,

Let every rebel impulse cease,

And gather into thy one fold

The wanderers whom thy love doth hold.

 

For this thine arms wide-stretched in plea

Hung bleeding on the atoning Tree;

For this the spear’s revealing dart

Laid bare thy love-emflamed Heart.

 

For this thou dost thy glory hide,

Outpouring from thy pierced side

The riches of thy love divine

Beneath the veils of bread and wine.

 

May realms and they that rule them vie

With solemn rites to raise thee high;

May laws and arts thy servants be,

All life be sanctified in thee.

 

Their kingly gear and royal state

Kings to their King shall consecrate;

Subjects their all before thee lay

In service of thy gentle sway.

 

Jesu, to thee, beneath whose sway

All earth shall bow, all praise we pay;

With Father and with Spirit be

All glory thine eternally.

Amen.

 

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2019 in Devotions

 

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BLESSED MIGUEL PRO, MARTYR

BLESSED MIGUEL PRO, MARTYR

BLESSED MIGUEL AGUSTIN PRO-JUAREZ, MARTYR – MEMORIAL: NOVEMBER 23

Blessed Miguel, born 1891 in Concepcion del Oro, Mexico, joined the Society of Jesus in 1911. He studied in Spain and Belgium. In Belgium he was also ordained a priest and returned to Mexico in 1926. The government in Mexico tried to eradicate the Catholic Faith. Many priests and lay faithful were murdered. Fr Pro ministered secretly to the faithful. After the attempted assassination of General Alvaro Obregon Fr Pro was arrested. In spite of Obregon having personally vouchsafed for Fr Pro’s innocence, the former was executed on 23.11.1927.

 

 

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ST JOSE SANCHEZ DEL RIO, MARTYR

ST JOSE SANCHEZ DEL RIO, MARTYR

ST JOSE SANCHEZ DEL RIO, MARTYR – MEMORIAL: NOVEMBER 20 

Jose Sanchez del Rio of Zamora Diocese, Mexico, was arrested by Church haters in 1928. The soldiers cruelly tortured him, saying that, if he renounced the Faith, he would be released. Jose kept calling, “Viva Cristo Rey! Viva la Virgen de Guadalupe!” and was eventually shot. He was canonised by Pope Francis on 16. October 2016.

PRAYER:

O God, who permit us to celebrate the memorial of St Jose Sanchez del Rio, grant that we who know how courageously your holy Martyr has confessed the Faith, may experience his intercession. Through our Lord Jesus Christ…

 

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ST LAURENCE O’TOOLE, BISHOP

ST LAURENCE O’TOOLE, BISHOP

ST LAURENCE O’TOOLE, BISHOP – MEMORIAL: NOVEMBER 14

St Laurence O’Toole, Patron of the Diocese and City of Dublin, was born near Castledermot, County Kildare, in 1127. His father was Maurice O’Toole, prince of the territory now called South Kildare, and his mother was daughter of O’Byrne, prince of the north-eastern portion of Co. Kildare.

The cross was his portion from childhood, for from ten years old till he was twelve, he was a hostage of Dermot MacMurrough, who treated him with relentless cruelty. Ferns, then a wild and desert place, was probably the scene of the hardships and privations of our Saint. Here, no doubt, the foundation was laid of that wonderful mortification, and spirit of contemplation and prayer, which distinguished his later life.

At the demand of Maurice O’Toole, our Saint was transferred to the custody of the Bishop of Glendalough, under whose care his health, impaired by privation and neglect, returned, and he engaged in a course of study with the greatest ardour. Some time after he became a monk of St Kevin’s Monastery, Glendalough, was ordained priest, and later, in 1153, was chosen Abbot by the monks.

On the death of Gregory, Archbishop of Dublin, 1161, St Laurence was elected to succeed him, and was consecrated by Gelasius, Archbishop of Armagh, in the Church of the Holy Trinity (now Christ Church), Dublin, 1162. In 1179 he attended the Third General Council of the Lateran, and Pope Alexander III made him Delegate Apostolic of the Holy See for the Kingdom of Ireland.

Full of virtues and labouring for the peace of his beloved but afflicted country, he died at the age of 53, on the 14th November, 1180,at the Abbey our Lord, at Eu, Normandy. At the moment of his holy death the Abbey was so flooded with celestial light that it was thought to be on fire. St Laurence was canonised by Pope Honorius III, in 1225, who mentions in the Bull of Canonisation that seven dead persons were restored by his intercession.

– St Anthony’s Treasury, 1916

 

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