Universalis
Thursday 20 July 2023    (other days)
Thursday of week 15 in Ordinary Time 
 or Saint Apollinaris, Bishop, Martyr 

Using calendar: Australia. You can pick a diocese or region.

Come, let us adore the Lord, for he is our God.

Year: A(I). Psalm week: 3. Liturgical Colour: Green.

Saint Apollinaris, Bishop, Martyr

He was bishop of Ravenna, probably in the late second century, and was probably martyred there. Devotion to him was already common in the seventh century.

Other saints: Saint Thorlak (1133-1193)

Denmark, Finland, Sweden
Thorlak Thorhallsson was born in 1133 at Hlíðarendi in the see of Skálholt in southern Iceland. He was ordained a deacon before he was fifteen and a priest at the age of eighteen. He studied abroad at Paris with the Victorines and then studied canon law at Lincoln. He returned to Iceland in 1165 and founded a monastery of Canons Regular at Þykkvabær. There he devoted himself to a strictly religious life, refusing to marry (many other Icelandic priests were married) and devoting himself to reciting the Our Father, the Creed, and a hymn, as well as fifty Psalms.
  Thorlak was consecrated bishop of Skálholt by Augustine of Nidaros and worked to regulate the Augustinian Rule in Iceland, as well as to eradicate simony, lay patronage, and clerical incontinency.
  He died on 23 December 1193 and after having been informally venerated as a saint for many centuries he was officially canonised by Pope John Paul II, who named him patron saint of Iceland.

Other saints: St Elijah, Father of the Carmelites (1-2 Kings, Prophet)

20 Jul (where celebrated)
On this day, together with the eastern rites of the Catholic Church, Carmelites commemorate the feast of the prophet Elijah. In Hebrew, Elijah means “My God is YHWH”. Elijah is held as a model of the contemplative life, particularly by Carmelites who first gathered on Mount Carmel, where Elijah contested the worship of the one true God of the Israelite people against that of the prophets of Baal. The Scriptures describe Elijah as a man who lived in the presence of God and whose zeal for the true God led him into moments of encounter with God both in silence and through his prophetic action. The inspiration found in the person of Elijah pervades the history of the Carmelite Order from its very beginnings and so he is also named “Father of all Carmelites”.
MT

About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:

Second Reading: St Ambrose of Milan (340? - 397)

Ambrose was born in Trier (now in Germany) between 337 and 340, to a Roman family: his father was praetorian prefect of Gaul. Ambrose was educated at Rome and embarked on the standard cursus honorum of Roman advocates and administrators, at Sirmium, the capital of Illyria. In about 372 he was made prefect of Liguria and Emilia, whose capital was Milan.
  In 374 the bishopric of Milan fell vacant and when Ambrose tried to pacify the conflict between the Catholics and Arians over the appointment of a new bishop, the people turned on him and demanded that he become the bishop himself. He was a layman and not yet baptized (at this time it was common for baptism to be delayed and for people to remain for years as catechumens), but that was no defence. Coerced by the people and by the emperor, he was baptized, ordained, and installed as bishop within a week, on 7 December 374.
  He immediately gave his money to the poor and his land to the Church and set about learning theology. He had the advantage of knowing Greek, which few people did at that time, and so he was able to read the Eastern theologians and philosophers as well as those of the West.
  He was assiduous in carrying out his office, acting with charity to all: a true shepherd and teacher of the faithful. He was unimpressed by status and when the Emperor Theodosius ordered the massacre of 7,000 people in Thessalonica, Ambrose forced him to do public penance. He defended the rights of the Church and attacked the Arian heresy with learning, firmness and gentleness. He also wrote a number of hymns which are still in use today.
  Ambrose was a key figure in the conversion of St Augustine to Catholicism, impressing Augustine (hitherto unimpressed by the Catholics he had met) by his intelligence and scholarship. He died on Holy Saturday, 4 April 397.

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)Wisdom 19:22
Lord, in every way you have made your people great and glorious. You have never disdained them, but stood by them always and everywhere.

Noon reading (Sext)Deuteronomy 4:7
What great nation is there that has its gods so near as the Lord our God is to us whenever we call to him?

Afternoon reading (None)Esther 10:3
The single nation, mine, is Israel, those who cried out to God and were saved. Yes, the Lord has saved his people, the Lord has delivered us from all these evils, God has worked such signs and great wonders as have never happened among the nations.

Local calendars

General Calendar

Australia

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 - Ordinariate

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 - Sydney

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 - Townsville

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 - Wilcannia-Forbes

 - Wollongong


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