One Minute Reflection – 27 November – Wednesday of the Thirty Fourth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 21:12–19 and the Memorial of Saint Virgilius of Salzburg (c 700-784)
“But not a hair of your head shall perish.” … Luke 21:9
REFLECTION – “I cry out to Thee and entreat Thee, first that Thou would keep me from myself and from following any will but Thine.
Next, I beg of Thee, that in Thy infinite compassion Thou would temper Thy will to me, that it may not be severed but imdulgent to me.
Visit me not, O my loving Lord – if it be not wrong so to pray – visit me not those trying visitations which saints alone can bear!
Still, I leave all in Thy hands, my dear Saviour – I bargain for nothing. Only, if Thou shall bring heavier trial on me, give me more grace – flood me with the fulness of Thy strength and consolation, that they may work in me, not death but life and salvation. Amen” … St John Henry Newman (1801-1890), Priest, Founder of the Oratory in England, Theologian, Writer, Poet, Apologist
PRAYER – Shed Your clear light on our hearts O Lord, so that walking continually in the way of Your commandments, we may never be afraid, never be deceived or misled but by Your strength, stand firm in our faith. For Your Son, walks before us, beside us and behind us. The Holy Spirit of Your love fills us. Let nothing put us to shame. Grant that by the prayers of St Virgilius of Salzburg and all Your saints, we may be strengthened for the journey. Through our Lord Jesus, in the Holy Spirit, God eternally and forever, amen.
Saint of the Day – 27 November – Saint Virgilius of Salzburg (c 700-784) Bishop, Abbot, early Astronomer, Architect, Writer, Poet, Patron of the Arts – he was called “the Apostle of Carinthia” and “the Geometer.” He is also known as Fergal, Fearghal, Ferghil, Vergil, Virgiel, Virgil. Patronages – against birth complications, of Salzburg, Austria and of the Slovenes.
Despite the city attached to his name, St Virgilius of Salzburg was actually an Irish Priest and Pilgrim on his way to the Holy Land, who stopped in Salzburg on his journey and stayed as its Bishop.
As abbot of a monastery in Ireland in the eighth century, Virgilius was one of the most learned men in Europe (he even gained the sobriquet the “The Geometer” for his knowledge of geometry). Virgilius decided to make a pilgrimage to the Holy Land and he and his fellow companions sailed to France. He spent two years wandering and travelling throughout Europe but did not get any farther east than Bavaria.
During a stay in Salzburg, Virgilius was appointed Abbot of St Peter’s Monastery (where St Rupert too, had previously been a monk and then the Abbot), a role that included administrative duties for the Bishop of that diocese. He performed these duties admirably and when the Bishop died, he found himself compelled to accept an appointment as Bishop of Salzburg.
He encountered a difficult situation with St Boniface (c 675-754), who disagreed with some of his decisions and teachings and complained to the pope. These inter-saint disagreements came to nothing, however and Virgil continued on his tenure as a fantastically effective Bishop, without further disruption from saint or sinner.
St Rupert (c 660-710) was the first Bishop of Salzburg and also the Abbot of St Peter’s in Salzburg. He is said to have laid the foundations of the Salzburg Cathedral which St Virgilius completed. It became an even larger and grander building than St Rupert had originally envisaged. St Virgilius together with St Rupert, are the Patrons of Salzburg Cathedral. The Statue at the bottom is displayed at the Cathedral.
The images below show St Virgilius with the Architects in discussion of the Cathedral.
St Virgilius sent Missionaries to the surrounding areas and he, himself travelled to preach the Gospel to new people, as far as Hungary and is known as the Apostle to the Slovenians. When he returned from one such journey, Virgilius, fell ill and died on this date in 784.
When the Salzburg Cathedral was partly destroyed by a fire in 1181, St Virgilius’ grave was discovered and an “astounding series of miracles” generated a widespread cult. This led to his Canonisation by Pope Gregory IX in 1233.
Although he has become known as St Virgilius of Salzburg, Virgilius was very much a person of his place and time. He was an Irish scholar and Priest inspired by that unique Irish passion for his faith; the almost fanatical love of literature, learning and art that marked Ireland’s Golden Age and, was enflamed, by the Irish spirit of wanderlust which drove the Irish monks to re-educate and evangelise Europe. Virgil did things “the Irish way” and was, as one Austrian writer says, “a stiff-necked Irishman.” Although, he achieved many of his greatest accomplishments on the eastern frontier of European civilisation, he remained a son of that bastion of learning and enlightenment on the farthest west. Virgilius’s Irish character shaped most of what he did in Austria.
St Virgilius was truly an amazing person. He was the most learned man of his age but sadly, all of his writings were destroyed. He was hailed for his great knowledge and his holiness and his feast is celebrated both in Ireland and throughout central Europe.
Memorial of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal/The Medal of the Immaculate Conception(the correct title is the latter) :
27 November is the Feast of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal and is celebrated by it’s own Mass in Some Places.
The Miraculous Medal is a devotion to the Virgin Mary called the “Miraculous” Medal for the many miracles associated with those that wear it. It is one of my favourite medals to wear.
The Miraculous Medal came to the world through an Apparition of the Virgin Mary to Catherine Labouré in Paris, France in 1830. In Mary’s second apparition, she asked that “a medal should be struck in this image. The people wearing it, will receive my indulgence and those who piously say this short prayer will enjoy my very special protection”.
Two of the most famous conversions due to the miraculous medal was that of Fr Alphonse Ratisbonne NDS (1814-1884), an anti-Catholic Jewish banker and Claude Newman (1923-1944).
Fr Alphonse Ratisbonne received a vision of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. After his conversion, he became a priest and worked for the conversion of the Jewish people.
St Acacius of Sebaste
St Acharius of Noyon
St Apollinaris of Monte Cassino
Bl Bernardine of Fossa
St Bilhild of Altmünster
Bl Bronislao Kostkowski
St Fergus the Pict
St Gallgo of Wales
St Gregory of Sinai
St Hirenarchus of Sebaste
St James Intercisus
St John Angeloptes
St John of Pavia
Bl José Pérez González
Bl Juan Antonio de Bengoa Larriñaga
St Laverius St Leonard of Port Maurice OFM (1676-1751) About St Leonard: https://anastpaul.com/2018/11/27/saint-of-the-day-27-november-st-leonard-of-port-maurice-ofm-1676-1751/
St Maximus of Reiz
St Primitivus of Sahagun
St Secundinus of Ireland
St Severinus the Hermit
St Siffred of Carpentras
St Valerian of Aquileia St Virgilius of Salzburg (c 700-784)
Martyrs of Antioch – (3 saints): A group of Christians martyred together for their faith. Little information has survived except for their names – Auxilius, Basileus and Saturninus.
Martyrs of Nagasaki – (11 beati): A group of eleven Christians martyred together for their faith during a period of official persecution in Japan. They are:
• Blessed Alexius Nakamura
• Blessed Antonius Kimura
• Blessed Bartholomaeus Seki
• Blessed Ioannes Iwanaga
• Blessed Ioannes Motoyama
• Blessed Leo Nakanishi
• Blessed Matthias Kozasa
• Blessed Matthias Nakano
• Blessed Michaël Takeshita
• Blessed Romanus Motoyama Myotaro
• Blessed Thomas Koteda Kyumi
They were martyred on 27 November 1619 in Nagasaki, Japan and Beatified on 7 May 1867 by Pope Pius IX.
Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
• Blessed Bartolomé Gelabert Pericás
• Blessed Eduardo Camps Vasallo
• Blessed José Pérez González
• Blessed Juan Antonio de Bengoa Larriñaga
• Blessed Miguel Aguado Camarillo
• Blessed Pedro Armendáriz Zabaleta