Skip to comments.Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings, 01-02-06, Mem. St. Basil/Great, St. Gregory Nazianzen, dctrs
Posted on 01/02/2006 9:34:44 AM PST by Salvation
Memorial of Saint Basil the Great and Saint Gregory Nazianzen, bishops and doctors of the Church
Psalm: Monday 4
1 Jn 2:22-28
Who is the liar?
Whoever denies that Jesus is the Christ.
Whoever denies the Father and the Son, this is the antichrist.
Anyone who denies the Son does not have the Father,
but whoever confesses the Son has the Father as well.
Let what you heard from the beginning remain in you.
If what you heard from the beginning remains in you,
then you will remain in the Son and in the Father.
And this is the promise that he made us: eternal life.
I write you these things about those who would deceive you.
As for you,
the anointing that you received from him remains in you,
so that you do not need anyone to teach you.
But his anointing teaches you about everything and is true and not false;
just as it taught you, remain in him.
And now, children, remain in him,
so that when he appears we may have confidence
and not be put to shame by him at his coming.
Ps 98:1, 2-3ab, 3cd-4
R. (3cd) All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
Sing to the LORD a new song,
for he has done wondrous deeds;
His right hand has won victory for him,
his holy arm.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
This is the testimony of John.
When the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to him
to ask him, Who are you?
He admitted and did not deny it, but admitted,
I am not the Christ.
So they asked him,
What are you then? Are you Elijah?
And he said, I am not.
Are you the Prophet?
He answered, No.
So they said to him,
Who are you, so we can give an answer to those who sent us?
What do you have to say for yourself?
I am the voice of one crying out in the desert,
Make straight the way of the Lord,
as Isaiah the prophet said.
Some Pharisees were also sent.
They asked him,
Why then do you baptize
if you are not the Christ or Elijah or the Prophet?
John answered them,
I baptize with water;
but there is one among you whom you do not recognize,
the one who is coming after me,
whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie.
This happened in Bethany across the Jordan,
where John was baptizing.
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Happy New Year, Salvation! May 2006 hold many blessings for the readers of the Daily Caucus threads!
From: 1 John 2:22-28
Not Listening to Heretics (Continuation)
From: John 1:19-28
The Witness of John
|Monday, January 2, 2006
Saints Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen, Bishops and Doctors (Memorial)
**The bread which you do not use is the bread of the hungry; the garment hanging in your wardrobe is the garment of him who is naked; the shoes that you do not wear are the shoes of the one who is barefoot; the money that you keep locked away is the money of the poor; the acts of charity that you do not perform are so many injustices that you commit.
-- St Basil**
Such powoerful words!
Such powoerful words!
Such powerful words!
|January 02, 2006
Memorials of St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory Nazianzen, bishops and doctors
Old Calendar: Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus
St. Basil was a brilliant student born of a Christian family in Caesarea, Cappadocia (Turkey). For some years, he followed the monastic way of life. He vigorously fought the Arian heresy. He became Bishop of Caesarea in 370. The monks of the Eastern Church today still follow the monastic rules which he set down.
St. Gregory was also from Cappadocia. A friend of Basil, he too followed the monastic way of life for some years. He was ordained priest and in 381 became Bishop of Constantinople. It was during this period when the Arian heresy was at its height. He was called "The Theologian" because of his great learning and talent for oratory.
Before the reform of the Roman Calendar in 1969 the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus was celebrated on this day. It is now celebrated on January 3. St. Basil was celebrated on June 14 and St. Gregory on May 9.
As bishop, Basil was a courageous and heroic champion of the Catholic faith against the Arian heresy. In 372 Emperor Valens sent Modestus, the prefect, to Cappadocia to introduce Arianism as the state religion. Modestus approached the holy bishop, upbraided him for his teaching, and threatened despoliation, exile, martyrdom, and death. To these words of the Byzantine despot, Basil replied with the peace of divine faith: "Is that all? Nothing of what you mentioned touches me. We possess nothing, we can be robbed of nothing. Exile will be impossible, since everywhere on God's earth I am at home. Torments cannot afflict me, for I have no body. And death is welcome, for it will bring me more quickly to God. To a great extent I am already dead; for a long time I have been hastening to the grave." Astonished, the prefect remarked: "Till today no one has ever spoken to me so courageously." "Perhaps," rejoined Basil, "you have never before met a bishop." Modestus hastened back to Valens. "Emperor," he said, "we are bested by this leader of the Church. He is too strong for threats, too firm for words, too clever for persuasion."
Basil was a strong character, a burning lamp during his time. But as the fire from this lamp illumined and warmed the world, it consumed itself; as the saint's spiritual stature grew, his body wasted away, and at the early age of forty-nine his appearance was that of an old man. In every phase of ecclesiastical activity he showed superior talent and zeal. He was a great theologian, a powerful preacher, a gifted writer, the author of two rules for monastic life, a reformer of the Oriental liturgy. He died in 379, hardly forty-nine years old, yet so emaciated that only skin and bone remained, as though he had stayed alive in soul alone.
Patron: Cappadocia; hospital administrators; reformers; Russia.
Symbols: Supernatural fire, often with a dove present.
Gregory was baptized in 360, and for a while lived the quiet life of a hermit. In 372 he was consecrated bishop by St. Basil. At the urgent wish of Gregory, his father and bishop of Nazianz, he assisted him in the care of souls. In 381 he accepted the see of Constantinople, but grieved by the constant controversies retired again to the quiet life he cherished so highly and dedicated himself entirely to contemplation.
During his life span the pendulum was continually swinging back and forth between contemplation and the active ministry. He longed for solitude, but the exigencies of the times called him repeatedly to do pastoral work and to participate in the ecclesiastical movements of the day. He was unquestionably one of the greatest orators of Christian antiquity; his many and great accomplishments were due in great measure to his exceptional eloquence. His writings have merited for him the title of "Doctor of the Church."
January 2, 2006
St. Basil the Great
Basil was on his way to becoming a famous teacher when he decided to begin a religious life of gospel poverty. After studying various modes of religious life, he founded what was probably the first monastery in Asia Minor. He is to monks of the East what St. Benedict is to the West, and his principles influence Eastern monasticism today.
He was ordained a priest, assisted the archbishop of Caesarea (now southeastern Turkey), and ultimately became archbishop himself, in spite of opposition from some of his suffragan bishops, probably because they foresaw coming reforms.
One of the most damaging heresies in the history of the Church, Arianism, which denied the divinity of Christ, was at its height. Emperor Valens persecuted orthodox believers, and put great pressure on Basil to remain silent and admit the heretics to communion. Basil remained firm, and Valens backed down. But trouble remained. When the great St. Athanasius died, the mantle of defender of the faith against Arianism fell upon Basil. He strove mightily to unite and rally his fellow Catholics who were crushed by tyranny and torn by internal dissension. He was misunderstood, misrepresented, accused of heresy and ambition. Even appeals to the pope brought no response. For my sins I seem to be unsuccessful in everything.
He was tireless in pastoral care. He preached twice a day to huge crowds, built a hospital that was called a wonder of the world (as a youth he had organized famine relief and worked in a soup kitchen himself) and fought the prostitution business.
Basil was best known as an orator. His writings, though not recognized greatly in his lifetime, rightly place him among the great teachers of the Church. Seventy-two years after his death, the Council of Chalcedon described him as the great Basil, minister of grace who has expounded the truth to the whole earth.
St. Gregory Nazianzen
After his baptism at 30, Gregory gladly accepted his friend Basils invitation to join him in a newly founded monastery. The solitude was broken when Gregorys father, a bishop, needed help in his diocese and estate. It seems that Gregory was ordained a priest practically by force, and only reluctantly accepted the responsibility. He skillfully avoided a schism that threatened when his own father made compromises with Arianism. At 41, Gregory was chosen suffragan bishop of Caesarea and at once came into conflict with Valens, the emperor, who supported the Arians. An unfortunate by-product of the battle was the cooling of the friendship of two saints. Basil, his archbishop, sent him to a miserable and unhealthy town on the border of unjustly created divisions in his diocese. Basil reproached Gregory for not going to his see.
When protection for Arianism ended with the death of Valens, Gregory was called to rebuild the faith in the great see of Constantinople, which had been under Arian teachers for three decades. Retiring and sensitive, he dreaded being drawn into the whirlpool of corruption and violence. He first stayed at a friends home, which became the only orthodox church in the city. In such surroundings, he began giving the great sermons on the Trinity for which he is famous. In time, Gregory did rebuild the faith in the city, but at the cost of great suffering, slander, insults and even personal violence. An interloper even tried to take over his bishopric.
His last days were spent in solitude and austerity. He wrote religious poetry, some of it autobiographical, of great depth and beauty. He was acclaimed simply as the Theologian.
Don't know why American Catholic has the differing dates for these two saints????
1 Jn 2:22-28 / Jn 1:19-28
One of the most foolish mistakes any of us can make is to believe our own press releases. Taking ourselves too seriously is a fatal error that is made so often that we have to conclude that it's been bred into the human race. It was the mistake that Adam and Eve made in the garden, when they were only too ready to let the snake persuade them that they could become God's equal. What a farce, and yet we see it recurring in our own time and in our own lives every day.
In today's gospel, John the Baptist provides a refreshing respite from the usual self inflation. When messengers from the authorities in Jerusalem asked him in all seriousness if he were the messiah, or the great Elijah, or the Prophet, John had to be flattered and tempted at the very least to make some tantalizing delphic response such as, "In time all things will be made clear," or "You'll be surprised." But he did none of that. Instead, his response was a clear "no" to all the questions. "I am only the voice in the desert, crying out: 'Make straight the way of the Lord.'"
What a perfect example for us all: To know who we are and what our own unique vocation from God is; to delight in answering that call as fully and enthusiastically as we can; and to ask for nothing more and pretend to nothing more. It is the truth that will set us free. Embrace the truth and let your heart soar.
Great links and commentaries. Thank you.
|19||And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent from Jerusalem priests and Levites to him, to ask him: Who art thou?||et hoc est testimonium Iohannis quando miserunt Iudaei ab Hierosolymis sacerdotes et Levitas ad eum ut interrogarent eum tu quis es|
|20||And he confessed, and did not deny: and he confessed: I am not the Christ.||et confessus est et non negavit et confessus est quia non sum ego Christus|
|21||And they asked him: What then? Art thou Elias? And he said: I am not. Art thou the prophet? And he answered: No.||et interrogaverunt eum quid ergo Helias es tu et dicit non sum propheta es tu et respondit non|
|22||They said therefore unto him: Who art thou, that we may give an answer to them that sent us? What sayest thou of thyself?||dixerunt ergo ei quis es ut responsum demus his qui miserunt nos quid dicis de te ipso|
|23||He said: I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Isaias.||ait ego vox clamantis in deserto dirigite viam Domini sicut dixit Esaias propheta|
|24||And they that were sent, were of the Pharisees.||et qui missi fuerant erant ex Pharisaeis|
|25||And they asked him, and said to him: Why then dost thou baptize, if thou be not Christ, nor Elias, nor the prophet?||et interrogaverunt eum et dixerunt ei quid ergo baptizas si tu non es Christus neque Helias neque propheta|
|26||John answered them, saying: I baptize with water; but there hath stood one in the midst of you, whom you know not.||respondit eis Iohannes dicens ego baptizo in aqua medius autem vestrum stetit quem vos non scitis|
|27||The same is he that shall come after me, who is preferred before me: the latchet of whose shoe I am not worthy to loose.||ipse est qui post me venturus est qui ante me factus est cuius ego non sum dignus ut solvam eius corrigiam calciamenti|
|28||These things were done in Bethania, beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.||haec in Bethania facta sunt trans Iordanen ubi erat Iohannes baptizans|
Monday January 2, 2006 Monday before Epiphany
Reading (1 John 2:22-28) Gospel (St. John 1:19-28)
In the first reading today, Saint John tells us that anyone who confesses Christ also has the Father, and then goes on to tell us about this anointing that has been received; and the anointing received in this sense is the Holy Spirit, so we have the Holy Trinity. But at the same time, Saint John tells us that we must remain in Christ. And if we remain in Christ, he tells us exactly what the promise is: eternal life. Therefore, if we do not remain in Christ, we have cut ourselves off from eternal life.
What does it mean to remain in Christ? At the very least, it means to be in the state of grace, to make sure that all of our sins are confessed and forgiven so we can be in union with Christ. But a minimal point like that is not enough because we all know what the devils wiles are. Saint John tells us that he is writing all of this in order to protect us from those who are going to try to deceive us. Well, who is the one who is going to try to deceive us? It is Satan. And if all we are trying to do is keep ourselves minimally in the state of gracethanks be to God we are there, but we all know Satans attacks can be pretty fiercewe are going to be in serious trouble. The temptations, especially at the last moment of our lives, are going to be very harsh. If we are not accustomed to praying and if we are not seeking a deeper union with Christ but only simply saying, Whats the absolute minimum that I have to have, then when the temptations come chances are that we are going to fall. That fall will be disastrous, because if we die and we are not in the state of grace, there is only one place we can go. If we are not in the state of grace, we cannot go to Purgatory. Purgatory is for those who are in the state of grace but are not yet fully purified. So if we are not in the state of grace, the only place to go is hell.
This is why it is so critically important that we develop the spiritual life. In the society in which we live, we have to have a spiritual life. It is just part and parcel of every Christian, and it has been for two thousand years. But it is more imperative now than it ever has been before because never before has there been a situation where things are so evil as they are now, where things have gone so far astray. The devil knows how human nature works. He knows that most human beings want to be in the middle. So he keeps pushing things out further and further and further so that the middle now is so skewed that what is now considered the middle is something that fifty years ago no one in their right mind would have even dreamed of doing because it was so horrible. But what do we do? We justify it; we say, Its not that bad. But it is! How are we going to recognize how bad it is? Only through the Holy Spirit, Who is in us. And how are we going to recognize it? Only if we pray, because we are not willing to listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit if we are not praying. We are not willing to develop a relationship with Christ, which means that we are going to develop our relationship the other way. We are going to be deeper into the things of the world, which means we are going to be deeper into the things of the devil. That is why it is so critical that we develop a prayer life.
That means, as I have told you thousands of times by now, you have to have time every single day in front of the Blessed Sacrament. You have to take time to sit silently before the Lord. It is not enough just to say a few prayers. That is good, but it is not enough. In the world in which we live, it is so necessary that we are deep in prayer just in order to live what used to be considered an ordinary Christian life. That is what has happened. We have to understand that the devil has been so shrewd and right now the line is reeled so far out that just in order to get ourselves back to where we belong we need to be praying. We need to know the truth and we need to conform ourselves to the truth. The only way to do that is going to be in prayer; again, because we know that if we are going to find that middle ground as society wants to present it, it means we are going to be rejecting part of the truth. So if we want the truthand the truth is Christthen we have to unite ourselves with Him in prayer. That is what this is all about. If we are united with Him in prayer, then we have the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit will teach us because He was given to lead us into all truth, which means He was given to lead us into full union with Christ. That is what we need today more than anything.
So if we want that union, if we do not want to follow the spirit of Antichrist, then we need to be deep in union with Jesus Christ. There are only the two options: It is Christ or it is Satan. The choice is ours. As we know, the devil does not care if you make an explicit act of faith in him; you do not have to say, I reject Jesus and I choose Satan. All we have to do is look at how we live, the choices we make, the things we do. The actions, as my mother taught me so many times, speak far louder than our words. If our words do not deny Him [Christ] but our actions do, Satan will be perfectly happy with that. So that is why, if we are going to say we believe in Christ, we need to act upon it so we do not deny Him in our actions after professing Him with our words.
* This text was transcribed from the audio recording with minimal editing.
You're welcome! Thanks for stopping by! Hope you have a blessed New Year!
|Monday, January 02, 2006
1 John 2:22-28
John had been with Jesus from the very beginning. He stayed with him for a full three years and even stood at the foot of the cross when he died. How did he manage to stay so faithful? Because he took to heart Jesus invitation to abide in him (John 15:1-11).
During the years after the death of Jesus, John must have pondered Jesus words over and over again. He must have recalled and studied the Hebrew Scriptures and written down all he remembered from what Jesus had taught him and the rest of the disciples. And thats how John learned how to abide in Christ: All his pondering of Jesus teachings convinced him that Christ lived in him, and that gave him confidence that he could indeed abide in Christ. John also discovered that remaining in Jesus made him capable of bearing much more fruit in the kingdom of God than if he tried to do Gods work by his own strength.
As the early Christian communities grew, they began to experience a clash of cultures between the philosophies of the world and the gospel they had embraced. How should young believers deal with the perennial problems of love of the world, lust of the flesh, and pride of life (1 John 2:12-17)? In this letter, St. John used all he had learned over the years to encourage these believers. And his teaching all boiled downagainto abiding in Christ: Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you (2:24). John exhorted them to remember that the Holy Spirit had been poured out precisely to teach them and help them to overcome the obstacles they were facing (2:27).
We are bombarded with worldly ideas, our own fleshly cravings, and Satans evil schemes. Who will save us? Jesus Christ, our Lord! Every day, we can fill our minds with the promises of God. Every day, we can seek his presence. Every day, we can practice the art of abiding in Christ. Jesus promised he would never leave us; we just need to turn to him for guidance and strength. As we do, we will be convinced that we can overcome the world, simply because we are abiding in Christ.
Jesus, I want to remain in your presence all through my day. Help me to rest in your word. Teach me through the Scriptures how to live a life of love and gratitude.
Psalm 98:1-4; John 1:19-28