Give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.
Year: B(I). Psalm week: 3. Liturgical Colour: Green.
Saints Pontian and Hippolytus ( - 235)
Hippolytus was a priest and a learned man, the most important writer of the Church at Rome in the early third century. He strongly attacked the popes of the time, and was set up as a rival Pope to St Callistus. Some time later, in Maximin’s persecution, he was sent to labour in the quarries of Sardinia. There he met the then Pope, Pontian, and was reconciled with him.
Pontian was made Pope in 231, and was sent to the quarries in 235, where he resigned the papacy and died.
Pontian’s successor, Fabian, had both bodies brought back to Rome for burial, and Pontian and Hippolytus were already being venerated by the Roman Church by the start of the fourth century.
Saint Fachtna or Fachanan of Ross
He is patron saint of the diocese of Ross, of which he was probably the first bishop. He established the monastic school of Ross, at what is now Rosscarbery, in county Cork, one of the most famous schools of Ireland, which flourished for three hundred years.
Other saints: Blessed William Freeman (-1595)
William Freeman was born in Yorkshire and studied at Magdalen College, Oxford. In 1586 he witnessed the execution of a Catholic priest in London, and this made such an impression on him that he was reconciled to the Church and left England to study for the priesthood. He was ordained at Rheims in France in 1589. For six years he worked in secret as a priest in Worcestershire and Warwickshire. He was arrested at Alvechurch, condemned to death for being a priest and hanged, drawn and quartered at Warwick on 13 August 1595. At the gallows he said: “I came hither to die for my faith, the true ancient and Catholic faith”. He was beatified by Pope Pius XI in 1929.
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
Second Reading: St Pacian (c. 310–391)
Saint Pacian (Pacianus) was bishop of Barcelona from about 365 to 391. He is Jerome’s De viris illustribus, in which Jerome praises his eloquence, learning, chastity, and holiness of life.
His writings are extant only in part in three letters and a short treatise, Paraenesis ad Poenitentiam. He discusses ecclesiastical discipline, baptism and papal primacy. He also opposes the rigorous doctrines of Novatianism, which maintained that Christians who had once given in to their persecutors could never be forgiven or re-admitted to communion.
Liturgical colour: green
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 orderly sequence of weeks through the year, a season in which we are being neither single-mindedly penitent (in purple) nor overwhelmingly joyful (in white).
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||Romans 1:16-17 ©|
The power of God saves all who have faith – Jews first, but Greeks as well – since this is what reveals the justice of God to us: it shows how faith leads to faith, or as scripture says: The upright man finds life through faith.
|Noon reading (Sext)||Romans 3:21-22 ©|
God’s justice that was made known through the Law and the Prophets has now been revealed outside the Law, since it is the same justice of God that comes through faith to everyone who believes.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Ephesians 2:8-9 ©|
It is by grace that you have been saved, through faith; not by anything of your own, but by a gift from God; not by anything that you have done, so that nobody can claim the credit.