Today's second reading in the Liturgy of the Hours is from St. Ignatius of Antioch, his letter to the Magnesians. This reading is a very important apologetic piece because it discusses the differences between priests and laypersons and between priests and the diocesan Bishop. Many fundamentalist Protestants will argue that this distinction was developed by Catholics in the 400s or even the Middle Ages. That's why this writing is so important. It dates as early as 70 A.D. and definitely no later than 120 A.D. Indeed our Catholic Faith is Christ's Body - the same today, yesterday, and forever.
Monday, July 19, 2010
Friday, July 9, 2010
Because today is the feast day of the Chinese martyrs, this morning's homily focused on their giving of themselves and how that is tied to the Holy Spirit as seen in the readings. I was thinking during mass that most of us will never be fortunate enough to call ourselves martyrs for Christ. We will likely never die because of our faith or suffer as Our Lord did.
However, as ordinary individuals we have the opportunity to offer up little sufferings in unity with Christ's suffering. As St. Terese of Liseaux and so many other saints have taught us, even the smallest inconvienences and pains can be offered to God.
Also, we can martyr ourselves in another way, frequently mentioned in the New Testament. By "dying" to sin, we not only sacrifice something that brings us temporal pleasure, but also draw closer to God. In both these ways we can become "little martyrs". and indeed saints.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Thursday, July 1, 2010
Last night my wife and I watched the Polish movie Faustina about the life of the saint. My biggest complaints were that the movie had to roll many characters and events into one or oversimplify them, that the theological depth of her writing is largely missing, and that her relationship with her confessor Fr. Sopocko is very simplified. Overall, however, the movie does give a general introduction to St. Faustina's life and sufferings and I recommend it.