The Lord has truly risen, alleluia.
Year: B(II). Psalm week: 2. Liturgical Colour: White.
Other saints: Blessed Catherine of Saint Augustine (1632 - 1668)
Catherine de Longpré was born May 3, 1632 at Saint-Saveur, France. Following the advice of Saint John Eudes, she entered the Augustinian Hospitaller Sisters of the Mercy of Jesus in 1644. She volunteered to go to her community’s mission in Quebec. Her family was strongly opposed to the idea, but she prevailed, and arrived there in 1648.
She spent her life ministering to the poor and sick in Quebec, and died there at the age of 36.
Other saints: Blessed John Sullivan (1861-1933)
8 May (where celebrated)
John Sullivan (1861 – 1933) was born into a wealthy Dublin family and baptized in the Church of Ireland. He was received into the Catholic Church in 1896, at the age of thirty-five. Four years later, he entered the Jesuits. He was known for his life of deep spiritual reflection and personal sacrifice; he is recognised for his dedicated work with the poor and afflicted; during his lifetime, cures were attributed to his intercession, though he himself did not accept this. He spent much of his time walking and riding his bike to visit those who were troubled or ill in the villages around Clongowes Wood College school where he taught from 1907 until his death.
Other saints: Bl Aloysius Rabatà (c.1443-1490)
8 May (where celebrated)
Aloysius was born at Erice, near Trapani, Sicily, around the year 1443. Little is known of his early life. Accounts from the canonical process of beatification identify him as the prior of the Carmelite Community of St Michael in Randazzo, Sicily. Brother Aloysius is remembered as a model Carmelite prior, living the care, concern and responsibility of a prior as outlined in the Carmelite Rule. His simple, virtuous and exemplary life was a model for the other brothers of his community. He shared in all aspects of work in the community, including the humbler tasks such as begging for the community’s bread. His welcome, hospitality and spiritual counsel were well remembered by visitors to the community. As well, his generosity of spirit overflowed into his care for the poor of Randazzo.
Toward the end of his life, while out collecting wood for the community, he was assaulted and wounded on the forehead and suffered for a long time as a consequence. In iconography Aloysius is often represented with a palm in his hand and an arrow driven into his forehead, believed to be the cause of his death. According to tradition, an unknown assailant had wounded Aloysius because he thought Aloysius had been excessive in reproving a brother for immoral conduct. He would never reveal who had hurt him and when questioned would only reply, “I pray that God will pardon him, and will be glorified by what has happened.”
Brother Aloysius died at Randazzo and was buried there in the church. Devotion to the memory of the Christ-like care Aloysius lived out brought healing to many at his tomb following his death.
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
Second Reading: St Cyril of Alexandria (370 - 444)
Cyril was born in 370 . He entered a monastery, became a priest and in 412 succeeded his uncle as Bishop of Alexandria. Alexandria was the largest city in the ancient world. Rather like Los Angeles, it was a sprawling mixture of races and creeds; and it was a byword for the violence of its sectarian politics, whether of Greeks against Jews or of orthodox Christians against heretics.
In 428, Nestorius, the new Patriarch of Constantinople (and hence one of the most important bishops in the world) made statements that could be interpreted as denying the divinity of Christ. The dual nature – human and divine – has always been hard for us to accept or understand, and if it seems easy it is only because we have not thought about it properly. Those who dislike problems have had two responses: to deny the human nature of Christ or to deny his divinity: and either leads to disaster, since both deny the Incarnation and hence the divinisation of human nature.
Cyril fought strongly against the teachings of Nestorius and took the lead at the Council of Ephesus, plunging into the turbulent politics of the time and defending the Catholic faith through to its ultimate victory.
Cyril wrote many works to explain and defend the Catholic faith. He died in 444.
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.
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||Acts 4:11-12 ©|
This Jesus is ‘the stone rejected by you the builders, but which has proved to be the keystone.’ For of all the names in the world given to men, this is the only one by which we can be saved.
|Noon reading (Sext)||(1 Peter 3:21-22) ©|
Now you are saved by baptism. This is not the washing off of physical dirt but a pledge made to God from a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has entered heaven and is at God’s right hand.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Colossians 3:1-2 ©|
Since you have been brought back to true life with Christ, you must look for the things that are in heaven, where Christ is, sitting at God’s right hand. Let your thoughts be on heavenly things, not on the things that are on the earth.