How wonderful is God among his saints: come, let us adore him.
Year: B(I). Psalm week: 4. Liturgical Colour: White.
St Bridget of Sweden (1303 - 1373)
She was married to a nobleman and had eight children. At the age of 30 she was summoned to the court of the King of Sweden, where she served as lady-in-waiting to the queen. She tried without much success to moderate the riotous and indecent life of the royal court.
After a pilgrimage to the shrine of St James at Compostela in Spain, Bridget and her husband Ulf decided to spend the rest of their lives in monasteries. Ulf died in 1344, but Bridget went on to found a double monastery (for men and women in separate but adjacent institutions) as the start of a new monastic order.
In 1350 she travelled to Rome for the Holy Year, and spent the rest of her life there caring for the poor and the sick, denouncing the excesses of the aristocracy, and robustly telling the Pope to return to Rome from Avignon.
She had many mystical visions, which alarmed her because she feared that they might be the work of the Devil; but a learned Cistercian monk reassured her, and she subsequently dictated and published the revelations she received, which were partially devotional and partly prophetic.
Other saints: SS. Philip Evans and John Lloyd (- 1679)
Philip Evans was born in Monmouth in 1645 and became a Jesuit. He arrived in South Wales as a missionary in 1675. John Lloyd, from Breconshire, was a secular priest who took the missionary oath in 1649 and was sent to minister in Wales. In the scare caused by the lies of Titus Oates, both were arrested. They were tried in 1679 on the charge of being priests and coming into Wales, of which they were undoubtedly guilty. They were executed in Cardiff on 22 July 1679. See the article in WIkipedia
Other saints: St Philip Evans (1645-1679) and St John Lloyd (c.1630-1679)
Philip Evans was born in Monmouth, 1645, and was educated at St Omer where he joined the Society of Jesus. After ordination he was sent to South Wales to work. Despite the official anti-Catholic policy he was left alone for some years by the local officials. In 1678 in the wake of the so-called ‘Popish Plot’ he was taken prisoner, £200 (then a huge sum of money) having been offered as a reward for his arrest. He refused to take the Oath of Allegiance and was kept in Cardiff Castle. He was not put on trial for several months because, it is said, no one could be found to testify against him.
John Lloyd was a Welshman, born in Brecon about the year 1630. He studied for the priesthood in Valladolid, Spain and then returned to Wales where he ministered as a diocesan priest for over twenty years without any recorded problems. Following the ‘Popish Plot’ of Titus Oates, Lloyd was arrested in Glamorgan and charged with having said Mass at Llantilio, Penrhos, and Trievor. He was imprisoned at Cardiff Castle with Philip Evans. They were tried together and were both condemned for their priesthood. They were hanged, drawn, and quartered together on 22 July, 1679 on Gallows Field in Cardiff. Philip Evans spoke at some length to the crowd in both English and Welsh. In the course of his speech he said: “I die for God and religion’s sake; and I think myself so happy that if I had many lives I would willingly give them all for so great a cause.” His companion John Lloyd said very little: “I never was a good speaker in my life”, but that he died in “the true Catholic and Apostolic faith”.
Other saints: Our Lady, Mother of Divine Grace
23 Jul (where celebrated)
The Blessed Virgin Mary was eternally predestined, in the context of the incarnation of the divine Word, to be Mother of God. As decreed by divine Providence, she served on earth as the loving Mother of the divine Redeemer, his associate, uniquely generous, and the Lord’s humble servant. She conceived, bore, and nourished Christ; presented him to the Father in the Temple; and was united with him in his suffering as he died on the cross. In a completely unparalleled way she cooperated, by her obedience, faith, hope and burning charity, with our Saviour’s work of restoring supernatural life to souls. For this reason she is Mother to us all in the order of grace.
Liturgical colour: white
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.
Other notes: Gabryela Teresa Kochanski (1927 - 2006)
On this day in 2006 died Thérèse Kochanski, mother of Martin Kochanski, the founder of Universalis. Please pray for the repose of her soul; and for her son and daughter who survive her.
If you would like to follow the funeral service, you can do so here
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||Galatians 6:7-8 ©|
What a man sows, he reaps. If he sows in the field of self-indulgence he will get a harvest of corruption out of it; if he sows in the field of the Spirit he will get from it a harvest of eternal life.
|Noon reading (Sext)||1 Corinthians 9:26-27 ©|
That is how I run, intent on winning; that is how I fight, not beating the air. I treat my body hard and make it obey me.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Philippians 4:8,9 ©|
My brothers, fill your minds with everything that is true, everything that is noble, everything that is good and pure, everything that we love and honour, and everything that can be thought virtuous or worthy of praise. Then the God of peace will be with you.