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Quote/s of the Day – 27 December – Beloved of the Lord

Quote/s of the Day – 27 December – Feast of St John the Evangelist and the Third Day of the Christmas Octave

“John’s God-illumined mind,
conceived the incomparable height of divine wisdom,
when he reclined on the Redeemer’s breast,
during the holy Last Supper meal (Jn 13:25).
And because “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col 2:3)
are within the heart of Jesus, it is from there, that he drew
and from there, that he greatly enriched our wretchedness,
as people who are poor and generously distributed these goods,
taken from their source, for the salvation of the whole world.
And because this blessed John speaks about God
in a marvellous way, that cannot be compared to that of anyone else,
it is only right that the Greeks as well as the Latins
have given him the name of “Theologian”.
Mary is “Theotokos” because she has truly given birth to God;
John is “Theologos” because he saw in an indescribable way,
that the Word of God, was with the Father
before the beginning of time and was God (Jn 1:1)
and because, too, he spoke about this, with extraordinary depth.”

St Peter Damian (1007-1072) Doctor of the Churchjohns-god-illumined-mind-st-peter-damian-27-dec-2018 and 2019.jpg

“If Moses, after having conversed
with God in the cloud,
came from the Divine interview
with rays of miraculous light encircling his head,
how radiant must have been the face of St John,
which had rested on the very Heart of Jesus,
in Whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom
and knowledge [Col. ii 3]
how sublime his writings!
how Divine his teaching!”if moses after having conversed with god - abbott gueranger on ST JOHN 27 dec 2019.jpg

“Then too, as Son and Guardian of Mary,
thou hast to present us to thine own and our Mother.
Ask her to give us, somewhat of the tender love,
wherewith she watches over the Crib of her Divine Son,
to see in us, the Brothers of that Child she bore
and to admit us, to a share of the maternal affection,
she had for thee, the favoured confidant
of the secrets of her Jesus.”

Abbot Prosper Guéranger OSB (1805-1875)then too, as son and guardian of mary - st john - by abbott guerange - 27 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The INCARNATION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 December – The Word was made flesh …

One Minute Reflection – 27 December – Feast of St John the Evangelist the Memorial of Blessed Sára Salkaházi (1899–1944) Martyr and the Third Day of the Christmas Octave, Readings: 1 John 1:1-4, Psalm 97:1-2, 5-6, 11-12, John 20:2-8

Beloved:
What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we looked upon and touched with our hands concerns the Word of life (for the life was made visible;  we have seen it and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was made visible to us.… 1 John 1:1-2beloved-what-was-from-the-beginning-what-we-have-heard-1-john-1-1-to-2-27dec2017, 2018 and 2019.jpg

REFLECTION – ““Life itself was therefore revealed in the flesh.
In this way what was visible to the heart alone, could become visible also to the eye and so heal men’s hearts.   For the Word is visible to the heart alone, while flesh is visible to bodily eyes as well.   We already possessed the means to see the flesh but we had no means of seeing the Word.   The Word was made flesh so that we could see it, to heal the part of us, by which we could see the Word…” … St Augustine (354-430) – Father & Doctor of the Churchlife-itself-was-therefore-revealed-st-augustine-27-dec-2017, 2018 and one min refl 2019-1.jpg

PRAYER – “I am grateful to You for the love You have given me.   My dear Jesus, I place this love into Your hands:  keep it chaste and bless it, so that it may always be rooted in You.   And increase in me my love for You. I know that if I love You, I can never get lost. If I want to be Yours with all my heart, You will never let me stray from You. Amen.    May St John the Evangelist, beloved of the Lord and Blessed Sára Salkaházi, intercede for us that we may love You Lord with all our hearts, minds and souls!if-i-love-you-prayer-of-bl-sara-salkahazi-27-dec-2018 and one min refl 2019

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, CHRISTMASTIDE!, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS to the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Our Morning Offering – 27 December – Oh Teach Me then, Dear Saint! An Invocation of St John, Evangelist

Our Morning Offering – 27 December – Feast of St John the Evangelist and the Third Day of the Christmas Octave

Oh Teach Me then, Dear Saint!

An Invocation of St John, Evangelist

Saint of the Sacred Heart,
Sweet teacher of the Word,
Partner of Mary’s woes
And favourite of thy Lord!

Refrain
Oh teach me then, dear Saint!
The secrets Christ taught thee;
The beatings of His Heart,
And how it beat for me!

We know not all thy gifts
But this Christ bids us see,
That He who so loved all,
Found more to love in thee.
Refrain

When the last evening came,
Thy head was on His breast,
Pillowed on earth, where now
In heaven the Saints find rest.
Refrain

Dear Saint! I stand far off,
With vilest sins opprest,
Oh may I dare, like thee,
To lean upon His breast?
Refrain

His touch could heal the sick,
His voice could raise the dead,
Oh that my soul might be
Where He allows thy head.
Refrain

The gifts He gave to thee
He gave thee to impart
And I, too, claim with thee
His Mother and His Heart!
Refraino teach me then dear saint an invocation of st john evangelist hymn - 27 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, YouTube VIDEOS

Feast of St John the Apostle, Third Day of the Christmas Octave and Evangelist and Memorials of the Saints – 27 December

Third Day of the Christmas Octave

St John the Apostle and Evangelist (Feast)
St John the Beloved:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/12/27/saint-of-the-day-27-december-st-john-the-apostle-and-evangelist/

Bl Adelheidis of Tennenbach
Bl Alejo Pan López
Bl Alfredo Parte-Saiz
Bl Christina Ebner
St Fabiola (Died 399)
Bl Francesco Spoto
Bl Hesso of Beinwil
St José María Corbin-Ferrer
St Maximus of Alexandria
St Nicarete of Constantinople
Bl Odoardo Focherini
Bl Raymond de Barellis
Bl Roger of Verdun
Blessed Sára Schalkház S.S.S. (1899–1944) Martyr
Biography of Blessed Sára:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/12/27/saint-of-the-day-27-december-blessed-sara-salkahazi-s-s-s-1899-1944-martyr-a-catholic-gem/
St Theodore of Apamea
St Theophanes of Nicaea
Bl Walto of Wessobrünn

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, EASTER, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, ON the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The RESURRECTION

Thought for the Day – 27 December – “The Greatest Easter Painting Ever Made”

Thought for the Day – 27 December – the Feast of St John the Apostle and Evangelist “The Disciple whom Jesus Loved” and the 3rd Octave Day – “The Greatest Easter Painting Ever Made”

So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb and we do not know where they have laid him.”   Peter then came out, with the other disciple and they went toward the tomb.   They both ran but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first and stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there but he did not go in.   Then Simon Peter came, following him and went into the tomb, he saw the linen cloths lying and the napkin, which had been on his head, not lying with the linen cloths but rolled up in a place by itself.   Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in and he saw and believed...John 20:2–8

Tucked away in a central Parisian museum that was once a railway station, there hangs an Easter painting quite unlike any Gospel masterpiece created before or after it.   It is not painted by a Rembrandt or a Rubens or the patron saint of artists, Fra Angelico.   The painting is the work of a little-known Swiss painter.   For those who make a trip to see it, viewing the canvas is a special spiritual experience in their lives.

The work does not even show the risen Jesus.   It merely portrays two witnesses, Jesus’ oldest and youngest apostle.   The youngest who was the only man brave enough to stay by Jesus’ cross and the only one who did not die a martyr’s death as a result of it.   The oldest apostle, who first denied Jesus in fear, yet ultimately chose to be crucified upside down by the Roman authorities, rather than deny Christ’s resurrection.

Mary, John & Mary of Magdala at the cross-antoon-van-dyck-follow-jesus
Anton van Dyck

In “The Disciples Peter and John Running to the Sepulchre on the Morning of the Resurrection” by Eugène Burnand, John clasps his hand in prayer while Peter holds his hand over his heart.   The viewer feels the rush as their hair and cloaks fly back with the wind.   They are sprinting towards discovery of the moment that forever altered heaven and earth.   As you look at it, engage for a moment in what the Catholic blogger Bill Donaghy calls “the visual equivalent of Lectio Divina.”   As Donaghy notes, “This Resurrection scene does not put us before still figures near a stagnant stone, or figures standing with stony faces in a contrived, plastic posture, pointing to an empty tomb.   This scene is dynamic; we are in motion.”

During his time, Burnand was fascinated by the possibilities of the emerging art of photography.   Ironically, he would later be dismissed in the twentieth century as too “bourgeois” and anti-modernist when in fact he was merging his love of tradition with his interest in new technological ways of capturing the human person.   His painting feels cinematic long before cinema existed as a major art form.

Through the movement and immediacy of the scene, the preceding minutes with Mary Magdalene are palpable.   In a sense, she is in the painting too.   “You can almost hear her voice in the background, can you not, a few minutes earlier, as she burst into their house…” writes the Episcopal Bishop Dorsey McConnell in an Easter sermon meditating on the painting.

Apart from Jesus’ mother, no other three participants capture the closeness of Jesus’ encounter with humankind quite like John, Peter and Mary of Magdala.   Their interactions with Christ embody a relationship to God previously unimaginable to mankind.   Jesus turning to Peter as they sit by the fire and asking three times, “Do you love me?”, thereby washing away the sin of the three denials past;  Christ turning to John in the midst of his suffering and saying, “Behold, your mother,” giving her to the Church entire.   And, of course, the beautiful moment about to transpire in which Jesus’ merely says Mary’s name and she recognises Him with a cry of “Rabbouni!”   They are the moments which cause one to wonder, how those who truly hate Christianity (not merely disbelief it) can remain so hostile to its narrative beauty.

st john and the sorrowful mother - van-weyden-at-the-cross
By Rogier van Weyden (1400-1464)
st john and mary - beloved-by-dyce
By William Dyce (1806-1864)

Look into Peter’s wide open eyes and John’s intense gaze.   Their eyes contain a mix of anxiousness and hope, the way a parent or grandparent’s eyes look at the news of an impending birth.   A new life is about to emerge but there is still uncertainty because it is a mystery beyond full human comprehension or control.   Peter and John’s faces capture the same sense of anticipation.

Burnand created a sparse, simple painting capturing two of the most important players in the greatest story ever told.   Meditate upon their faces, as Burnand intended you to do and through them, discover the empty tomb.the-greatest-easter-painting-elise-ehrhard-crises-mag1- used again today 27dec2018

St John, Beloved of the Lord, Pray for us!beloved st john pray for us 27 dec 2018

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Quote/s of the Day – 27 December

Quote/s of the Day – 27 December – the Feast of St John the Apostle and Evangelist “The Disciple whom Jesus Loved” and the 3rd Octave Day and the Memorial of Blessed Sára Salkaházi (1899–1944) Martyr

Beloved: 

What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we looked upon and touched with our hands concerns the Word of life (for the life was made visible;  

we have seen it and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was made visible to us.…

1 John 1:1-2beloved what was from the beginning, what we have heard - 1-john-1-1-to-2-27dec2017

“Life itself was therefore revealed in the flesh.
In this way what was visible to the heart alone,
could become visible also to the eye
and so heal men’s hearts.
For the Word is visible to the heart alone,
while flesh is visible to bodily eyes as well.
We already possessed the means to see the flesh
but we had no means of seeing the Word.
The Word was made flesh so that we could see it,
to heal the part of us,
by which we could see the Word…”

St Augustine (354-430) – Father & Doctor of the Churchlife-itself-was-therefore-revealed-st-augustine-27-dec-2017

“It is right and just, that someone, who was loved by Christ
more than any other, should be the object
of a very special love, by Christ’s friends,
all the more so, since John has shown such love for us that…
he has shared with us, the riches of eternal life, that he himself received.
Indeed, God gave him, the keys to wisdom and knowledge (cf Lk 11:52)…it is right and just that someone who was loved - st peter damian on st john 27 dec 2018

John’s God-illumined mind, conceived the incomparable height of divine wisdom, 
when he reclined on the Redeemer’s breast, during the holy Last Supper meal (Jn 13:25).
And because “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col 2:3)
are within the heart of Jesus, it is from there, that he drew
and from there, that he greatly enriched our wretchedness, 
as people who are poor and generously distributed these goods,
taken from their source, for the salvation of the whole world.
And because this blessed John speaks about God
in a marvellous way, that cannot be compared to that of anyone else,
it is only right that the Greeks as well as the Latins
have given him the name of “Theologian”.
Mary is “Theotokos” because she has truly given birth to God;
John is “Theologos” because he saw in an indescribable way,
that the Word of God, was with the Father
before the beginning of time and was God (Jn 1:1)
and because, too, he spoke about this, with extraordinary depth.”

St Peter Damian (1007-1072) Doctor of the Churchjohn's god illumined mind - st peter damian 27 dec 2018

“To love, even when it is difficult,
even when my heart has complaints,
when, I feel rejected!
Yes, this is what God wants!
I will try;  I want to start – even if I would fail –
until I will be able to love.
The Lord God gives me grace
and I have to work with that grace!”to love even when - bl sara salkahazi 27dec2018

“I want to follow You wherever You take me,
freely, willingly, joyfully.
Break my will!
Let Your will reign in me!
I do not want to make my own plans.
Let Your will be done in me and through me.
No matter how hard it might be,
I want to love Your will!
I want to be one with You,
my Beloved, my Spouse.”

Blessed Sára Salkaházi (1899–1944) Martyr

Blessed Sára in her spiritual diaryi want to follow you wherever you take me - bl sara salkahazi 27dec2018

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 27 December – the Feast of St John the Apostle and Evangelist “The Disciple whom Jesus Loved”  and the 3rd Octave Day

Thought for the Day – 27 December – the Feast of St John the Apostle and Evangelist “The Disciple whom Jesus Loved”  and the 3rd Octave DayJesus_last_supper-1014x487Bookmark-St-John

Taken From THE LITURGICAL YEAR, Abbot Dom Guéranger OSB, Book II

NEAREST to Jesus’ Crib, after Stephen, stands John, the Apostle and Evangelist.   It was only right that the first place should be assigned to him, who so loved his God that he shed his blood in his service;   for, as this God Himself declares, greater love than this hath no man, that he lay down his life for his friends, [St. John xv 13] and Martyrdom has ever been counted by the Church as the greatest act of love and as having, consequently, the power of remitting sins, like a second Baptism.   But next to the sacrifice of Blood, the noblest, the bravest sacrifice and that which most wins the heart of Him Who is the Spouse of souls, is the sacrifice of Virginity.   Now just as St Stephen is looked upon as the type of Martyrs, St John is honoured as the Prince of Virgins.   Martyrdom won for Stephen the Crown and palm;   Virginity merited for John most singular prerogatives, which, while they show how dear to God is holy Chastity, put this Disciple among those who by their dignity and influence are above the rest of men.

St John was of the family of David, as was our Blessed Lady.   He was consequently a relation of Jesus.   This same honour belonged to St James the Greater, his brother;  as also to St James the Less and St Jude, both sons of Alpheub.   When our Saint was in the prime of his youth, he left not only his boat and nets, not only his Father Zebedee but even his betrothed, when everything was prepared for the marriage.   He followed Jesus, and never once looked back.   Hence the special love which our Lord bore him.   Others were Disciples or Apostles, John was the Friend of Jesus.   The cause of this our Lord’s partiality was, as the Church tells us in the Liturgy, that John had offered his Virginity to the Man-God.   Let us, on this his Feast, enumerate the graces and privileges that came to St. John from his being the Disciple whom Jesus loved.

This very expression of the Gospel, which the Evangelist repeats several times—–The Disciple whom Jesus loved [St. John xiii 23; xix 26; xxi 7; xxi 20]—–says more than any commentary could do.   St Peter, it is true, was chosen by our Divine Lord to be the Head of the Apostolic College and the Rock whereon the Church was to be built:  he, then, was honoured most;   but St John was loved most.   Peter was bid to love more than the rest loved and he was able to say, in answer to Jesus’ thrice repeated question, that he did love Him in this highest way:  and yet, notwithstanding, John was more loved by Jesus than was Peter himself, because his Virginity deserved this special mark of honour.

Chastity of soul and body brings him who possesses it into a sacred nearness and intimacy with God.   Hence it was that at the Last Supper—–that Supper which was to be renewed on our Altars to the end of the world, in order to cure our spiritual infirmities and give life to our souls—–John was placed near to Jesus, nay, was permitted, as the tenderly loved Disciple, to lean his head upon the Breast of the Man-God.   Then it was that he was filled, from their very Fountain, with Light and Love:   it was both a recompense and a favour and became the source of two signal graces, which make St John an object of special reverence to the whole Church.jesus and john

Divine wisdom wishing to make known to the world the Mystery of the Word and commit to Scripture those profound secrets which, so far, no pen of mortal had been permitted to write, the task was put upon John.   Peter had been crucified, Paul had been beheaded and the rest of the Apostles had laid down their lives in testimony of the Truths they had been sent to preach to the world; John was the only one left in the Church.   Heresy had already begun its blasphemies against the Apostolic Teachings;  it refused to admit the Incarnate Word as the Son of God, Consubstantial to the Father. John was asked by the Churches to speak and he did so in language heavenly above measure.   His Divine Master had reserved to this His Virgin-Disciple the honour of writing those sublime Mysteries which the other Apostles had been commissioned only to teach—–THE WORD WAS GOD, and this WORD WAS MADE FLESH for the salvation of mankind.   Thus did our Evangelist soar, like the Eagle, up to the Divine Sun and gaze upon Him with undazzled eye, because his heart and senses were pure and therefore fitted for such vision of the uncreated Light.   If Moses, after having conversed with God in the cloud, came from the Divine interview with rays of miraculous light encircling his head:  how radiant must have been the face of St John, which had rested on the very Heart of Jesus, in Whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge [Col. ii 3] how sublime his writings! how Divine his teaching!   Hence the symbol of the Eagle, shown to the Prophet Ezechiel, [Ezech. i 10; x 14] and to St John himself in his Revelations, [Apoc. iv 7] has been assigned to him by the Church:  and to this title of The Eagle has been added, by universal tradition, the other beautiful name of Theologian.

This was the first recompense given by Jesus to His Beloved John—–a profound penetration into Divine Mysteries.   The second was the imparting to him of a most ardent charity, which was equally a grace consequent upon his angelic purity, for purity unburdens the soul from grovelling egotistic affections and raises it to a chaste and generous love.   John had treasured up in his heart the Discourses of his Master:  he made them known to the Church, and especially that Divine one of the Last Supper, wherein Jesus had poured forth His whole Soul to His Own, whom He had always tenderly loved but most so at the end. [1 St. John xiii 1]   He wrote his Epistles and Charity is his subject: God is Charity—–he that loveth not, knoweth not God—–perfect Charity casts out fear—–and so on throughout, always on Love.   During the rest of his life, even when so enfeebled by old age as not to be able to walk, he was for ever insisting upon all men loving each other, after the example of God, Who had loved them and so loved them!  Thus, he that had announced more clearly than the rest of the Apostles the Divinity of the Incarnate Word, was par excellence the Apostle of that Divine Charity which Jesus came to enkindle upon the earth.

But our Lord had a further gift to bestow and it was sweetly appropriate to the Virgin-Disciple.   When dying on his Cross, Jesus left Mary upon this earth. Joseph had been dead now some years.   Who then shall watch over His Mother? Who is there worthy of the charge?   Will Jesus send His Angels to protect and console her?   For, surely, what man could ever merit to be to her as a second Joseph?   Looking down, He sees the Virgin-Disciple standing at the foot of the Cross:   we know the rest, John is to be Mary’s Son:   Mary is to be John’s Mother.   Oh! wonderful Chastity, that wins from Jesus such an inheritance as this!   Peter, says St Peter Damian, shall have left to him the Church, the Mother of men; but John shall receive Mary, the Mother of God, whom he will love as his own dearest Treasur, and to whom he will stand in Jesus’ stead;   whilst Mary will tenderly love John, her Jesus’ Friend, as her Son.beloved by dyce

Can we be surprised after this, that St John is looked upon by the Church as one of her greatest glories?   He is a Relative of Jesus in the flesh;   he is an Apostle, a Virgin, the Friend of the Divine Spouse, the Eagle, the Theologian, the Son of Mary; he is an Evangelist, by the history he has given of the Life of his Divine Master and Friend;  he is a Sacred Writer, by the three Epistles he wrote under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost;  he is a Prophet, by his mysterious Apocalypse, wherein are treasured the secrets of time and eternity.   But is he a Martyr? Yes, for if he did not complete his sacrifice, he drank the Chalice of Jesus, [St. Matt. xx 22] when, after being cruelly scourged, he was thrown into a caldron of boiling oil before the Latin Gate at Rome.   He was therefore a Martyr in desire and intention, though not in fact.   If our Lord, wishing to prolong a life so dear to the Church, as well as to show how he loves and honours Virginity, miraculously stayed the effects of the frightful punishment, St John had, on his part, unreservedly accepted Martyrdom.

Such is the companion of Stephen at the Crib, wherein lies our Infant Jesus.   If the Protomartyr dazzles us with the robes he wears of the bright scarlet of his own blood;  is not the virginal whiteness of John’s vestment fairer than the untrod snow?   The spotless beauty of the Lilies of Mary’s adopted Son and the bright vermilion of Stephen’s Roses——what is there more lovely than their union?   Glory, then, be to our New-Born King, Whose court is tapestried with such heaven-made colours as these!   Yes, Bethlehem’s Stable is a very Heaven on earth and we have seen its transformation.   First we saw Mary and Joseph alone there:  they were adoring Jesus in His Crib;   then, immediately, there descended a heavenly host of Angels singing the wonderful Hymn;  the Shepherds soon followed, the humble, simple-hearted Shepherds;  after these entered Stephen the Crowned and John the Beloved Disciple;   and even before there enters the pageant of the devout Magi, we shall have others coming in, and there will be each day grander glory in the Cave, and gladder joy in our hearts.   Oh! this birth of our Jesus!   Humble as it seems, yet how Divine!   What King or Emperor ever received in his gilded cradle, honours like these shown to the Babe of Bethlehem?   Let us unite our homage with that given Him by these the favoured inmates of His court.   Yesterday the sight of the Palm in Stephen’s hand animated us and we offered to our Jesus the promise of a stronger Faith:   today the Wreath that decks the brow of the Beloved Disciple breathes upon the Church the heavenly fragrance of Virginity:  an intenser love of Purity must be our resolution, and our tribute to the Lamb.

Beloved Disciple of the Babe of Bethlehem!  how great is thy happiness!  how wonderful is the reward given to thy love and thy purity!  In thee was fulfilled that word of thy Master:  Blessed are the clean of heart;  for they shall see God.   Not only didst thou see this God-Man:  thou wast His Friend and on His Bosom didst rest thy head.   John the Baptist trembles at having to bend the head of Jesus under the water of Jordan; Magdalen, though assured by his own lips that her pardon was perfect as her love, yet dares not raise her head, but keeps clinging to his feet;  Thomas scarce presumes to obey Him when He bids him put his finger into His wounded Side;  and thou, in the presence of all the Apostles, sittest close to Him, leaning thy head upon His Breast!   Nor is it only Jesus in his Humanity that thou seest and possessest;  but, because thy heart is pure, thou soarest like an eagle up to the Sun of Justice and fixest thine eye upon Him in the light inaccessible wherein He dwells eternally with the Father and the Holy Ghost.

Thus was rewarded the fidelity wherewith thou didst keep intact for Jesus the precious treasure of thy Purity.   And now, O worthy favourite of the great King!  forget not us poor sinners.   We believe and confess the Divinity of the Incarnate Word Whom thou hast evangelised unto us;  but we desire to draw nigh to Him during this holy season, now that He shows himself so desirous of our company, so humble, so full of love, so dear a Child, and so poor!   Alas! our sins keep us back;   our heart is not pure like thine; we have need of a Patron to introduce us to our Master’s crib. [Isa. i 3] Thou, O Beloved Disciple of Emmanuel!   Thou must procure us this happiness.   Thou hast shown us the Divinity of the Word in the bosom of the Eternal Father;  lead us now to this same Word made flesh.   Under thy patronage Jesus will permit us to enter into the Stable, to stand near His Crib, to see with our eyes and touch with our hands [1 St. John i 1] this sweet Fruit of eternal Life.   May it be granted us to contemplate the sweet Face of Him that is our Saviour and thy Friend;  to feel the throbs of that Heart which loves both thee and us, which thou didst see wounded by the Spear, on Calvary.   It is good for us to fix ourselves here near the Crib of our Jesus and share in the graces He there lavishes and learn, as thou didst, the grand lesson of this Child’s simplicity:  thy prayers must procure all this for us.

Then too, as Son and Guardian of Mary, thou hast to present us to thine own and our Mother.   Ask her to give us somewhat of the tender love wherewith she watches over the Crib of her Divine Son; to see in us the Brothers of that Child she bore;  and to admit us to a share of the maternal affection she had for thee, the favoured confidant of the secrets of her Jesus.

We also pray to thee, O holy Apostle! for the Church of God.   She was planted and watered by thy labours, embalmed with the celestial fragrance of thy virtues and illumined by thy sublime teachings; pray now that these graces may bring forth their fruit, and that to the end of her pilgrimage faith may be firm, the love of Jesus fervent, and Christian morals pure and holy.   Thou has told us in thy Gospel of a saying of thy Divine Master:  I will not now call you my Servants but my Friends: [St. John xv 15] pray, dear Saint, that there may come to this, from our hearts and lips, a response of love and courage, telling our Emmanuel that, like thyself, we will follow Him whithersoever He leads us.st john pray for us - 27 dec 2017

Let us, on this second day after our Divine Infant’s Birth, meditate upon the Sleep He deigns to take.   Let us consider how this God of all goodness, Who has come down from Heaven to invite His creature man to come to Him and seek rest for his soul, seeks rest Himself in our earthly home and sanctifies by His Own Divine sleep that rest which to us is a necessity.   We have just been dwelling with delighted devotion on the thought of His offering His Breast as a resting-place for the Beloved Disciple and for all souls that imitate John in his love and devotedness:  now let us look at this our God, sweetly sleeping in His humble Crib, or on His Mother’s lap.Brooklyn_Museum_-_Saint_Peter_and_Saint_John_Run_to_the_Sepulchre_(Saint_Pierre_et_Saint_Jean_courent_au_sépulcre)_-_James_Tissotbeloved runs to the tomb - burnandsaints12-9johnwww.artshopua.com   www.arttrans.com.ua

 

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Saint of the Day – 27 December – St John the Apostle and Evangelist –

Saint of the Day – 27 December – St John the Apostle and Evangelist – “The Disciple whom Jesus Loved”  – (died c 101) Also known as • The Apostle of Charity • The Beloved Apostle • Giovanni Evangelista • John the Divine • John the Evangelist • John the Theologian.   Patronages – • against burns; burn victims• against epilepsy• against foot problems• against hailstorms• against poisoning• art dealers• authors, writers• basket makers• bookbinders• booksellers• butchers• compositors• editors• engravers• friendships• glaziers• government officials• harvests• lithographers• notaries• painters• papermakers• printers• publishers• saddle makers• scholars• sculptors• tanners• theologians• typesetters• vintners• Asia Minor (proclaimed on 26 October 1914 by Pope Benedict XV)• 6 dioceses• 7 cities,   Attributes – • book• cauldron• chalice• chalice with a serpent in allusion to the cup of sorrow foretold by Jesus• eagle, representing his role as the evangelist who most concentrated on Jesus’s divine nature• serpent.   The author of five books of the Bible (the Gospel of John, the First, Second, and Third Letters of John and Revelation), Saint John the Apostle was one of earliest disciples of Christ.   Commonly called Saint John the Evangelist because of his authorship of the fourth and final gospel, he is one of the most frequently mentioned disciples in the New Testament, rivaling Saint Peter for his prominence in the gospels and the Acts of the Apostles.   Yet outside of the Book of Revelation, John preferred to refer to himself not by name but as “the disciple whom Jesus loved.”   He was the only one of the apostles to die not of martyrdom but of old age, around the year 100.

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St John the Evangelist was a Galilean and the son, along with Saint James the Greater, of Zebedee and Salome.   Because he is usually placed after St James in the lists of the apostles (see Matthew 10:3, Mark 3:17 and Luke 6:14), John is generally considered the younger brother, perhaps as young as 17-18 at the time of Christ’s death.

With St James, he is always listed among the first four apostles (see Acts 1:13), reflecting not only his early calling (he is the other disciple of St John the Baptist, along with St Andrew, who follows Christ in John 1:34-40) but his honoured place among the disciples. (In Matthew 4:18-22 and Mark 1:16-20, James and John are called immediately after the fellow fishermen Peter and Andrew.)

Like Peter and James the Greater, John was a witness to the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1 ) and the Agony in the Garden (Matthew 26:37).    His closeness to Christ is apparent in the accounts of the Last Supper (John 13:23), at which he leaned on Christ’s breast while eating and the Crucifixion (John 19:25-27), where he was the only one of Christ’s disciples present.   Christ, seeing St John at the foot of the Cross with His mother, entrusted Mary to his care.   He was the first of the disciples to arrive at the tomb of Christ on Easter, having outraced Saint Peter (John 20:4) and while he waited for Peter to enter the tomb first, St John was the first to believe that Christ had risen from the dead (John 20:8).

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As one of the two initial witnesses to the Resurrection, St John naturally took a place of prominence in the early Church, as the Acts of the Apostles attest (see Acts 3:1, Acts 4:3, and Acts 8:14, in which he appears alongside St Peter himself.)   When the apostles dispersed following the persecution of Herod Agrippa (Acts 12), during which John’s brother James became the first of the apostles to win the crown of martyrdom (Acts 12:2), tradition holds that John went to Asia Minor, where he likely played a role in founding the Church at Ephesus.

Exiled to Patmos during the persecution of Domitian, he returned to Ephesus during Trajan’s reign and died there.

While on Patmos, John received the great revelation that forms the Book of Revelation and likely completed his gospel (which may, however, have existed in an earlier form a few decades before).

As with Saint Matthew, St John’s feast day is different in East and West.   In the Roman rite, his feast is celebrated on December 27, which was originally the feast of both St John and St James the Greater;  Eastern Catholics and Orthodox celebrate Saint John’s passage into eternal life on 26 September.   Traditional iconography has represented St John as an eagle, “symbolising” (in the words of the Catholic Encyclopedia) “the heights to which he rises in the first chapter of his Gospel.”   Like the other evangelists, he is sometimes symbolised by a book;  and a later tradition used the chalice as a symbol of St John, recalling Christ’s words to John and James the Greater in Matthew 20:23, “My chalice indeed you shall drink.”

A MARTYR WHO DIED A NATURAL DEATH
Christ’s reference to the chalice inevitably calls to mind His own Agony in the Garden, where He prays, “My Father, if this chalice may not pass away but I must drink it, thy will be done” (Matthew 26;42).   It thus seems a symbol of martyrdom and yet John, alone among the apostles, died a natural death.   Still, he has been honoured as a martyr from the earliest days after his death, because of an incident related by Tertullian, in which John, while in Rome, was placed in a pot of boiling oil but emerged unharmed.St.-John-Evangelist.- symbolSaint_John_the_Evangelist_by_Carlo_Dolcewww.artshopua.com   www.arttrans.com.uast-john-the-evangelist-and-the-poisoned-cup-alonso-canorubens_apostel_johannes_grtJOHN - MY SNIP - MASTER OF MOULINS

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Celebrating the Christmas Season -27 December: the Feast of St John Apostle and Evangelist

Celebrating the Christmas Season -27 December: the Feast of St John Apostle and Evangelist

“Lord, open my lips, and my mouth shall declare your praise.”

Daily Meditation:

Blessed are those that fear the Lord and walk in his ways. Psalm 128

Every son or daughter can read the first reading and let it be a life long guide.
The second reading is a wonderful guide for family life.
We could all do well to prepare our New Year’s resolution desires from here.
The gospel is from Luke and brings us back to Mary.
A sword will pass through her faithful heart.
May God bless all our families with fidelity and courage in loving as we have been loved.

And let the peace of Christ control your hearts,
the peace into which you were also called in one body.
And be thankful. Colossians 3

Closing Prayer:
God of such faithfulness,
we are a big and messy family;
both as humans – and in my own family.

Help me today to be especially patient and loving
and to forgive those who have hurt me.
We may not look like “The Holy Family” I see in paintings,
yet we are united with Jesus, Mary and Joseph
because in Your great love for us
You sent Your son to live in this world
and to share in our human experience.

Sometimes I forget the sacredness of our family life
and the privilege it is to be together in this bond.
Help me not only love others as You love us,
but to be more aware of those families in the world
who struggle so much with poverty, war and disease.

Help me to pray with and for them today
and to carry an awareness of all families fleeing for safety,
longing for the peace you offer to us all.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen

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Posted in MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 27 December

Thought for the Day – 27 December

It is a long way from being eager to sit on a throne of power or to call down fire from heaven to becoming the man who could write: “The way we came to know love was that he laid down his life for us; so we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers” (1 John 3:16).

After the Resurrection and Pentecost, St John spent his life in bearing witness to Jesus and saw in the Incarnation the very foundation of his existence, all that he was.  There is really no other way – and if we love Him we have no choice but to prove it in word and deed, in our love for everyone!

St John Pray for us!

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Posted in FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 27 December

Saint of the Day – 27 December – St John APOSTLE/ EVANGELIST/Writer, teacher, Priest,Theologian – (c 6-c 100) “The Beloved Apostle; Apostle of Charity; Beloved Disciple; Giovanni Evangelista;  John the Divine;  John the Evangelist; John the Theologian- Patron of  love, loyalty, friendships, authors, booksellers, burn-victims, poison-victims, art-dealers, editors, papermakers, publishers, scribes, scholars, theologians, against epilepsy, against foot problems, against hailstorms, authors, writers,  glaziers, government officials, harvests, lithographers, notaries, saddle-makers, painters/artists, Asia Minor (proclaimed on 26 October 1914 by Pope Benedict XV), 6 dioceses, 7 cities

St. John the Evangelist had the experience of living with Jesus—walking at His side, watching hHm perform miracles, listening to His teaching and receiving signs of personal love.

Much of what we know about John’s life comes through the Gospels. According to Matthew’s Gospel, John was in a boat mending nets with his older brother James and his father Zebedee when Jesus called them to follow him. Their “Yes!” led to a great adventure.

John and James were called Sons of Thunder, possibly because of their fiery tempers. One example was when people in a Samaritan town would not accept Jesus. James and John wanted to call down fire to destroy the town. At another time the brothers secretly asked Jesus to have the highest place in His kingdom. Jesus explained that real greatness comes to those who serve.

John had the special privilege of being with Jesus at crucial times. With Peter and James, John was permitted to watch the miracle of Jairus’s daughter coming back to life. The three witnessed the glory of Jesus’ transfiguration. They were also the three invited to be with Jesus during His agony in the garden. John’s own Gospel refers to him as “the disciple whom Jesus loved” (see John 13:23; 19:26; 20:2), the one who reclined next to Jesus at the Last Supper and the one to whom He gave the exquisite honour, as he stood beneath the cross, of caring for His mother. “Woman, behold your son…. Behold, your mother” (John 19:26b, 27b).

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Because of the depth of his Gospel, John is usually thought of as the eagle of theology, soaring in high regions that other writers did not enter.

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On the first Easter, Mary Magdalene “ran and went to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them, ‘They have taken the Lord from the tomb and we don’t know where they put him’” (John 20:2). John recalls, perhaps with a smile, that he and Peter ran side by side, but then “the other disciple ran faster than Peter and arrived at the tomb first” (John 20:4b). He did not enter but waited for Peter and let him go in first. “Then the other disciple also went in, the one who had arrived at the tomb first, and he saw and believed” (John 20:8).THE GREATEST EASTER PAINTING - ELISE EHRHARD CRISES MAG

 

John was with Peter when the first great miracle after the Resurrection took place—the cure of the man crippled from birth—which led to their spending the night in jail together. The mysterious experience of the Resurrection is perhaps best contained in the words of Acts: “Observing the boldness of Peter and John and perceiving them to be uneducated, ordinary men, they [the questioners] were amazed, and they recognized them as the companions of Jesus” (Acts 4:13).

The Apostle John is traditionally considered the author of the Fourth Gospel, three New Testament letters and the Book of Revelation. His Gospel is a very personal account. He sees the glorious and divine Jesus already in the incidents of His mortal life. At the Last Supper, John’s Jesus speaks as if he were already in heaven. It is the Gospel of Jesus’ glory!

It is said that when St. John was very old, people had to carry him to where the Christians assembled to worship. Each time he preached, he gave the same homily: “Little children, love one another.” When people asked if he would talk on a different topic, he said that this is the Lord’s word and if they really did this, they would do enough.

St. John, pray that we may understand the mysteries of our faith more and more!