The Lord has truly risen, alleluia.
Liturgical Colour: White.
|In other years: Saint Francis of Paola (1436 - 1507)|
He was born in Paola in Calabria. He founded an order of hermits which later became the Order of Minims (“minimi,” meaning “least,” because they were to be the least of the religious orders). He died on Good Friday, 2 April 1507, at Plessis in France. See the article in the Catholic Encyclopaedia
|Other saints: St John Payne (c.1550-1582)|
Brentwood: 6 May
John Payne (or Paine) was born in Peterborough into a Church of England family but in his early adult life became a Catholic. He went to the English College at Douai in 1574 and was ordained priest in 1576; the short time he was at the college may suggest that he had studied theology elsewhere. He returned to England in the company of Cuthbert Mayne (1st December). He went to Essex where he stayed at the home of the Petre family in Ingatestone Hall. From here he ministered to local Catholics, while apparently working as an estate steward. In 1577 he was imprisoned for a short time, afterwards returning briefly to Douai. He came back to Essex and continued working as a priest until in 1581 he was once again arrested. He was imprisoned at Greenwich, being charged with conspiracy against the Queen, was racked in the Tower, and was sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered. He denied the evidence brought against him completely, stating at his trial “that he always, in mind or word, honoured the queen’s majesty above any woman in the world; that he would gladly always have spent his life for her pleasure in any lawful service; that he prayed for her as for his own soul; that he never invented or compassed any treason against her majesty, or any of the nobility of England.” He was executed at Chelmsford on 2 April. He was so well known and respected in the neighbourhood that the crowd compelled the hangman to wait until he was dead before cutting him down.
|Other saints: Blessed Pedro Calungsod (- 1672)|
He was a teen-aged native of the Visayas region of the Philippines, one of the boy catechists who went with some Spanish Jesuit missionaries from the Philippines to the Ladrones Islands – later renamed “Marianas” – in the western Pacific in 1668, to evangelize the Chamorros. On 2 April 1672, while helping Fr Diego Luis de San Vitores, the rector of the Mission, to recover a runaway servant and to perform some baptisms at the village of Tomhon on the Island of Guam, he was killed by two natives for being a Christian, for catechizing the Chamorros and for helping in the administration of the Sacrament of Baptism. His body was thrown into deep ocean together with that of the rector, who was also killed after him.
He was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI on 21 October 2012.
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
|Second Reading: Saint Melito of Sardis (- c.180)|
Melito was the bishop of Sardis near Smyrna in western Anatolia, and a great authority in early Christianity. Jerome, speaking of the Old Testament canon established by Melito, quotes Tertullian to the effect that he was esteemed as a prophet by many of the faithful. Most of his works have not survived. His Apology to Marcus Aurelius, now known only in a Syriac translation, explains the origins of the Christian faith and tries to dissuade the emperor from persecuting Christians. His On the Passover, which was rediscovered only in 1940, sets the Last Supper and the Passion in the context of the Jewish Passover and thus relates Christianity to its roots in Judaism.
White is the colour of heaven. Liturgically, it is used to celebrate feasts of the Lord; Christmas and Easter, the great seasons of the Lord; and the saints. Not that you will always see white in church, because if something more splendid, such as gold, is available, that can and should be used instead. We are, after all, celebrating.
In the earliest centuries all vestments were white – the white of baptismal purity and of the robes worn by the armies of the redeemed in the Apocalypse, washed white in the blood of the Lamb. As the Church grew secure enough to be able to plan her liturgy, she began to use colour so that our sense of sight could deepen our experience of the mysteries of salvation, just as incense recruits our sense of smell and music that of hearing. Over the centuries various schemes of colour for feasts and seasons were worked out, and it is only as late as the 19th century that they were harmonized into their present form.
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||(Apocalypse 1:17-18) ©|
I saw the Son of Man, and he said to me, ‘Have no fear! I am the First and the Last. I was dead and now I am to live for ever and ever, and I hold the keys of death and of the underworld.’
|Noon reading (Sext)||Colossians 2:9,12 ©|
In Christ lives the fullness of divinity, and in him you too find your own fulfilment. You have been buried with him, when you were baptised; and by baptism, too, you have been raised up with him through your belief in the power of God who raised him from the dead.
|Afternoon reading (None)||2 Timothy 2:8,11 ©|
Remember the Good News that I carry, ‘Jesus Christ risen from the dead, sprung from the race of David’. Here is a saying that you can rely on: ‘If we have died with him, then we shall live with him.’