Year: A(I). Psalm week: 2. Liturgical Colour: Red.
He was born in Bethsaida, in Galilee, and worked as a fisherman. He may have been a disciple of St John the Baptist. He became one of the first to follow Jesus and introduced his brother, Simon Peter, to him. As one of the twelve Apostles he was widely venerated in ancient times, and became patron saint of Scotland because according to legend some of his bones were brought there and buried at the place where the town of St Andrew’s now stands.
|Other saints: St Cuthbert Mayne (1543-1577)|
Plymouth: 29 Nov
Cuthbert Mayne was born at Yorkston, near Barnstaple, Devonshire 1543 and was executed at Launceston, Cornwall, 29 November 1577. He was the son of William Mayne; he was educated at Barnstaple Grammar School and Oxford, where he got to know a number of men who were favourable to the Catholic cause, notably Edmund Campion and Gregory Martin, who themselves went over to Douai. He was persuaded of the truth of the Catholic cause but held back initially for fear of losing his appointments and his income. Late in 1570 a letter from Gregory Martin to Cuthbert fell into the Bishop of London’s hands. He at once arranged for Cuthbert and others mentioned in the letter to be arrested. Being warned, Cuthbert managed to escape and got to Douai. There he was received into the Catholic Church, and was ordained priest in 1575. He soon left for the English mission. He went to live with Francis Tregian, of Golden Manor, in St Probus’s parish, Cornwall, who was subsequently imprisoned for harbouring him. Cuthbert was arrested in June 1577, taken to Launceston and put on trial in September. He was found guilty of high treason, and was sentenced accordingly. The trial attracted considerable attention partly because he was the first so-called ‘seminary priest’ to be tried; a legal distinction was made between ‘Marian’ priests who had been ordained in England, and ‘seminary’ priests who had studied and had been ordained overseas. His execution was delayed because one of the judges altered his mind after sentence and sent a report to the Privy Council. They submitted the case to the whole Bench of Judges, which was inclined to Jeffries’s view. Nevertheless, for motives of policy, the Council ordered the conviction to stand “as a terror to the papists” and a warning to priests coming from abroad. A rough portrait of the martyr still exists.
A correspondent asks us to make it clear that the “Bishop of London” who had Cuthbert arrested was not the Catholic Bishop of London. Indeed, there was no Catholic Bishop of London at that time, and there has never been one since. The last Catholic Bishop of London was deprived of his see in 1559 and died in prison ten years later.
Red is the colour of fire and of blood. Liturgically, it is used to celebrate the fire of the Holy Spirit (for instance, at Pentecost) and the blood of the martyrs.
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||2 Corinthians 5:19-20 ©|
God has entrusted to us the news of reconciliation. So we are ambassadors for Christ; it is as though God were appealing through us, and the appeal that we make in Christ’s name is: be reconciled to God.
|Noon reading (Sext)||Acts 5:12,14 ©|
Many signs and wonders were worked among the people at the hands of the apostles and the numbers of men and women who came to believe in the Lord increased steadily.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Acts 5:41-42 ©|
The apostles left the presence of the Sanhedrin glad to have had the honour of suffering humiliation for the sake of the name. They preached every day both in the Temple and in private houses, and their proclamation of the Good News of Christ Jesus was never interrupted.