The Lord is the king of martyrs: come, let us adore him.
Year: B(I). Psalm week: 1. Liturgical Colour: Red.
St John Payne (c.1550-1582)
John Payne (or Paine) was born in Peterborough into a Church of England family but in his early adult life became a Catholic. He went to the English College at Douai in 1574 and was ordained priest in 1576; the short time he was at the college may suggest that he had studied theology elsewhere. He returned to England in the company of Cuthbert Mayne (1st December). He went to Essex where he stayed at the home of the Petre family in Ingatestone Hall. From here he ministered to local Catholics, while apparently working as an estate steward. In 1577 he was imprisoned for a short time, afterwards returning briefly to Douai. He came back to Essex and continued working as a priest until in 1581 he was once again arrested. He was imprisoned at Greenwich, being charged with conspiracy against the Queen, was racked in the Tower, and was sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered. He denied the evidence brought against him completely, stating at his trial “that he always, in mind or word, honoured the queen’s majesty above any woman in the world; that he would gladly always have spent his life for her pleasure in any lawful service; that he prayed for her as for his own soul; that he never invented or compassed any treason against her majesty, or any of the nobility of England.” He was executed at Chelmsford on 2 April. He was so well known and respected in the neighbourhood that the crowd compelled the hangman to wait until he was dead before cutting him down.
Other saints: Saint François de Laval (1623 - 1708)
He was the first bishop of New France, later to become Canada. He founded a seminary and had schools and churches built. He resigned his bishopric in 1684 but remained in New France and acted as deputy to his successor. He was canonized by Pope Francis on 3 April 2014.
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
Second Reading: Saint Gaudentius of Brescia (- c.410)
Gaudentius was Bishop of Brescia from about 387 until about 410. He was a friend of St John Chrysostom. His Easter sermons were written down after delivery at the request of Benivolus, the chief of the Brescian nobility, who had been prevented by ill health from hearing them delivered. They are simple, clear and straightforward.
Liturgical colour: red
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)||1 Corinthians 12:13 ©|
In the one Spirit we were all baptised, Jews as well as Greeks, slaves as well as citizens, and one Spirit was given to us all to drink.
|Noon reading (Sext)||Titus 3:5,7 ©|
God saved us by means of the cleansing water of rebirth and by renewing us with the Holy Spirit which he has so generously poured over us through Jesus Christ our saviour. He did this so that we should be justified by his grace, to become heirs looking forward to inheriting eternal life.
|Afternoon reading (None)||(Colossians 1:12-14) ©|
We thank the Father who has made it possible for us to share in the saints’ inheritance of light. He has taken us out of the power of darkness and created a place for us in the kingdom of the Son that he loves. In him, we gain our freedom and the forgiveness of our sins.