The Lord is a great king: come, let us adore him.
Year: C(I). Psalm week: 3. Liturgical Colour: Green.
Other saints: Bl. Villana de' Botti OP (1332 - 1361)
29 Jan (where celebrated)
Lay Dominican and Wife
Blessed Villana, the daughter of a rich merchant, was born at Florence in 1332. She married the wealthy Pietro Benitendo and together with her husband lived a worldly life which their wealth sustained. Realizing the emptiness of her life, Villana went to the friars of Santa Maria Novella to confess her sins and ask for the habit of the sisters of Penance of St. Dominic. She took up the study of scripture and the contemplation of Christ crucified and drew other women to follow her example. She died on January 29, 1361.
Other saints: Bl Archangela Girlani (1460-1495)
29 Jan (where celebrated)
Blessed Archangela Girlani was born Eleanor Girlani in 1460 at Trino, in northern Italy, to a noble family. At age seventeen, she, along with her two sisters, Maria and Frances, took the Carmelite habit in the monastery at Parma. Eleanor took the religious name Archangela. She later become prioress of the monastery at Parma, and then prioress at a new foundation at Mantua in 1492. She died at Mantua in January 1495 in her third year as prioress there. Apart from her role of service to the monasteries in which she was prioress, Archangela’s Carmelite life is remembered as one permeated by strivings in the mystical life of prayer. Her frequent prayer was “Jesus, my Love.”
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
Second Reading: St Basil the Great (330 - 379)
St Basil the Great, or Basil of Caesarea, was one of the three men known as the Cappadocian Fathers. The others are his younger brother, St Gregory of Nyssa, and St Gregory Nazianzen. They were active after the Council of Nicaea, working to formulate Trinitarian doctrine precisely and, in particular, to pin down the meaning and role of the least humanly comprehensible member of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit. Basil was the leader and organizer; Gregory of Nazianzus was the thinker, the orator, the poet, pushed into administrative and episcopal roles by circumstances and by Basil; and Gregory of Nyssa, Basil’s brother, although not a great stylist, was the most gifted of the three as a philosopher and theologian. Together, the Cappadocian Fathers hammered out the doctrine of the Trinity like blacksmiths forging a piece of metal by hammer-blows into its perfect, destined shape. They were champions – and successful champions – of orthodoxy against Arianism, a battle that had to be conducted as much on the worldly and political plane as on the philosophical and theological one.
In addition to his role in doctrinal development, Basil is also the father of Eastern monasticism. He moderated the heroic ascetic practices that were characteristic of earlier monastic life, to the point where they could be part of a life in which work, prayer and ascetic practices could be in harmonious balance. Knowledge of Basil’s work and Rule spread to the West and was an influence on the founding work of St Benedict.
The works of Basil that appear in the Second Readings are mostly from his works on the Holy Spirit, but there are also extracts from his monastic Rule.
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)||Jeremiah 22:3 ©|
Practise honesty and integrity; rescue the man who has been wronged from the hands of his oppressor; do not exploit the stranger, the orphan, the widow; do no violence; shed no innocent blood in this place.
|Noon reading (Sext)||Deuteronomy 15:7-8 ©|
Is there a poor man among you, one of your brothers, in any town of yours in the land that the Lord your God is giving you? Do not harden your heart or close your hand against that poor brother of yours, but be open-handed with him and lend him enough for his needs.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Proverbs 22:22-23 ©|
Because a man is poor, do not therefore cheat him, nor, at the city gate, oppress anybody in affliction; for the Lord takes up their cause, and extorts the life of their extortioners.