Let us listen for the voice of the Lord and enter into his peace.
Year: A(I). Psalm week: 2. Liturgical Colour: Green.
|Saint Jane Frances de Chantal (1572 - 1641)|
She was born in Dijon, in France, in 1572. She married a nobleman called de Chantal, by whom she had six children whom she brought up in the faith. When her husband died she placed herself under the guidance of Saint Francis de Sales and progressed rapidly along the way of perfection. She performed many good works for the poor and the sick. She founded the Order of the Visitation and guided it wisely. She died in 1641. See the articles in Wikipedia
and the Catholic Encyclopaedia
|Saturday memorials of the Blessed Virgin Mary|
‘On Saturdays in Ordinary Time when there is no obligatory memorial, an optional memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary is allowed.
‘Saturdays stand out among those days dedicated to the Virgin Mary. These are designated as memorials of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This memorial derives from Carolingian times (9th century), but the reasons for having chosen Saturday for its observance are unknown. While many explanations of this choice have been advanced, none is completely satisfactory from the point of view of the history of popular piety.
‘Whatever its historical origins may be, today the memorial rightly emphasizes certain values to which contemporary spirituality is more sensitive. It is a remembrance of the maternal example and discipleship of the Blessed Virgin Mary who, strengthened by faith and hope, on that “great Saturday” on which Our Lord lay in the tomb, was the only one of the disciples to hold vigil in expectation of the Lord’s resurrection. It is a prelude and introduction to the celebration of Sunday, the weekly memorial of the Resurrection of Christ. It is a sign that the Virgin Mary is continuously present and operative in the life of the Church.’
Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy (2001), §188
|Other saints: Blessed Isidore Bakanja (1886 - 1909)|
Today the Church in Africa remembers one of her youngest martyrs in the person of Isidore Bakanja. He was born in what was then the Belgian Congo around the year 1886. At the age of twenty he was baptized and, from that time onward, lived the faith to the full, until he died a martyr while working as a house servant of a Belgian colonist. Although he knew that his employer resented Christians, Bakanja insisted on wearing the scapular and saying the Rosary in his free time. In February 1909 his martyrdom began when he was severely beaten even to drawing blood, just because he was a Christian. The wounds inflicted by the strokes were so severe that he died on 15 August 1909, after having forgiven his aggressor.
|Other saints: Saint Muredach|
He was a disciple of St Patrick and possibly a member of his family. He was put in charge of the church at Killala in 442 or 443. It is probable that he resigned his see after a few years, and retired to end his life in the lonely island in Donegal Bay which has ever since borne his name, Innismurray.
|Other saints: Saint Attracta|
She lived in the fifth or sixth century and the details of her life have been obscured by legend. She may have received the veil from St Patrick. She is said to have founded several churches in the Counties of Galway and Sligo.
|Other saints: Saint Lelia|
St Lelia is particularly venerated in the diocese of Limerick, but all details of her life have been lost. She clearly lived, but when and how is no longer known for certain.
|Other saints: Saint Blaan (-590)|
Argyll & the Isles
Saint Blane (Old Irish Bláán) was born on the Isle of Bute, a nephew of St Cathan, and was educated in Ireland under Saints Comgall and Kenneth. He became a monk, went to Scotland, and was eventually bishop among the Picts.
|Other saints: Bl Isidore Bakanja (c.1887-1909)|
12 Aug (where celebrated)
Isidore Bakanja was born about 1887 in Bokendala (Congo), into the Boangi tribe. He worked as a labourer during much of his childhood. At the age of 18, he heard the Gospel through the work of the Cistercian missionaries and was baptised. He became a devout convert and fervent catechist. He also expressed a particular devotion to Mary in the Rosary and his enrolment in the brown scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
While he was working on a plantation, he was forbidden to speak of his Christianity or to wear the scapular, that he wore as a witness to his faith. Isidore refused to comply with these demands and as a result was severely beaten. His health began a rapid decline and when the plantation inspector discovered the young man’s failing condition, medical intervention could not save his life. As Isidore lay dying, he expressed forgiveness for his aggressor declaring, “When I am in heaven, I shall pray for him very much.” He died soon after, the year was 1909.
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
|Second Reading: St Irenaeus (130 - 202)|
Irenaeus was born in Smyrna, in Asia Minor (now Izmir in Turkey) and emigrated to Lyons, in France, where he eventually became the bishop. It is not known for certain whether he was martyred or died a natural death.
Whenever we take up a Bible we touch Irenaeus’s work, for he played a decisive role in fixing the canon of the New Testament. It is easy for people nowadays to think of Scripture – and the New Testament in particular – as the basis of the Church, but harder to remember that it was the Church itself that had to agree, early on, about what was scriptural and what was not. Before Irenaeus, there was vague general agreement on what scripture was, but a system based on this kind of common consent was too weak. As dissensions and heresies arose, reference to scripture was the obvious way of trying to settle what the truth really was, but in the absence of an agreed canon of scripture it was all too easy to attack one’s opponent’s arguments by saying that his texts were corrupt or unscriptural; and easy, too, to do a little fine-tuning of texts on one’s own behalf. Irenaeus not only established a canon which is almost identical to our present one, but also gave reasoned arguments for each inclusion and exclusion.
Irenaeus also wrote a major work, Against the Heresies, which in the course of denying what the Christian faith is not, effectively asserts what it is. The majority of this work was lost for many centuries and only rediscovered in a monastery on Mount Athos in 1842. Many passages from it are used in the Office of Readings.
The theological virtue of hope is symbolized by the colour green, just as the burning fire of love is symbolized by red. Green is the colour of growing things, and hope, like them, is always new and always fresh. Liturgically, green is the colour of Ordinary Time, the season in which we are being neither especially penitent (in purple) nor overwhelmingly joyful (in white).
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||Deuteronomy 8:5-6 ©|
The Lord your God was training you as a man trains his child. Keep the commandments of the Lord your God, and so follow his ways and reverence him.
|Noon reading (Sext)||1 Kings 2:2-3 ©|
Be strong and show yourself a man. Observe the injunctions of the Lord your God, following his ways and keeping his laws, his commandments, his customs and his decrees, so that you may be successful in all you do and undertake.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Jeremiah 6:16 ©|
Put yourselves on the ways of long ago and enquire about the ancient paths: which was the good way? Take it then, and you shall find rest.
Free audio for the blind
Office of Readings for Saturday of week 18
Morning Prayer for Saturday of week 18
Evening Prayer 1 for 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Full page including sources and copyrights