Roman Empire during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages
'The daughter of the Emperor Trajan, she was seized with five other women when they were gathering the bodies of the martyrs who had suffered for Christ by night, and was for this cruelly mutilated by the Emperor. The five women were terribly tortured and at last thrown into molten copper, where they surrendered their souls to their Lord. But Drosida remained under strict imperial guard. However, she escaped from the court and baptised herself in a river. After eight days she gave her soul into God's hands.' (Prologue)
'Saint Cuthbert was born in Britain about the year 635, and became a monk in his youth at the monastery of Melrose by the River Tweed. After many years of struggle as a true priest of Christ, in the service both of his own brethren and of the neglected Christians of isolated country villages, he became a solitary on Farne Island in 676. After eight years as a hermit, he was constrained to leave his quiet to become Bishop of Lindisfarne, in which office he served for almost two years. He returned to his hermitage two months before he reposed in peace in 687. 'Because of the miracles he wrought both during his life and at his tomb after death, he is called the "Wonderworker of Britain." The whole English people honoured him, and kings were both benefactors to his shrine and suppliants of his prayers. Eleven years after his death, his holy relics were revealed to be incorrupt; when his body was translated from Lindisfarne to Durham Cathedral in August of 1104, his body was still found to be untouched by decay, giving off "an odour of the sweetest fragrancy," and "from the flexibility of its joints representing a person asleep rather than dead." Finally, when the most impious Henry VIII desecrated his shrine, opening it to despoil it of its valuables, his body was again found incorrupt, and was buried in 1542. It is believed that after this the holy relics of Saint Cuthbert were hidden to preserve them from further desecration.' (Great Horologion)
Chrysanthos was the only son of Polemon, a prominent pagan in Rome. As befit his status, he was given every opportunity for secular learning, but seemed unable to acquire worldly wisdom. By God's providence, copies of the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles came into his possession and, reading them avidly, he was enlightened and desired above all to be a Christian. He found a priest, Carpophorus, who instructed him in the Faith and baptised him. When his father discovered Chrysanthos' conversion, he was angry and did everything he could to turn his son back to paganism, using even threats and imprisonment. When none of these measures worked, Polemon arranged for his son to be married to a beautiful and learned young pagan woman named Daria, hoping that affection for her would draw his son away from Christ. But instead, Chrysanthus persuaded Daria of the truth of Christianity, and she was secretly baptised. When his father died, Chrysanthus and his wife began to confess Christ openly and to live publicly as Christians. They were soon arrested and grievously tortured for their faith. The torturer, whose name was Claudius, was so moved by their endurance and patience that he himself embraced the Faith, along with his whole household. For this they were executed: Claudius by drowning, his two sons by beheading, and his wife by hanging. Finally Chrysanthus and Daria were buried alive in a pit and covered with stones. This was during the reign of the Emperor Numerian.
"Born in Chalcedon, he was little of stature, like Zaccheus, but great in spirit and faith. He denied himself to the world at the age of fifteen and settled near the River Euphrates in a little hut, where he atoned for his sins, and prayed to God, at first with his teacher Mayum and then, after Mayum's death, alone. By the power of his prayers he filled an empty well with water, healed the sick of various pains and tamed wild beasts. There was a tamed lion with him as his servant. He had insight into distant happenings. When robbers attacked a stylite, Pionius, at some distance from him, and beat him up to such an extent that he decided to come down from his pillar and go to complain to the judges, St Aninus saw his intention in his soul and sent him a letter by means of his lion, telling him to set aside his intention, to forgive his assaulters and to continue in his asceticism. He was inexpressibly generous. The bishop of Neo-Caesarea made a gift to him of a donkey, to ease his carrying of water from the river, but he gave this donkey to some poor man who had complained to him of his poverty. The bishop gave him a second donkey, but he gave that away. Then the bishop gave him a third donkey, not for his own but only to serve as a water-carrier, to be kept and returned. At the time of his death, he saw Moses, Aaron and Or coming to him and calling: 'Aninus, the Lord is calling you. Get up and come with us.' This he revealed to his disciples, and gave his spirit to the Lord whom he had served so faithfully. He was 110 years old when he finished his earthly course." (Prologue)
Foreign money to the Bidens, education needs changes, standing with the library board, the Byzantine empire
He was born of pious and noble parents in Rome in the time of the Emperor Honorius. His parents, Euphemianus and Agalais, set a high standard of godly living: his father, though wealthy, sat down to dine only once a day, at sunset. By his parents' arrangement Alexis was married at a young age. However, without ever living with his new wife, he fled to Edessa in Mesopotamia, where he lived in asceticism for eighteen years, presenting himself as a beggar in order to avoid the praise of men. When, despite his efforts, he began to be known as a holy man, he fled the city and took ship for Laodicea. By divine providence, the ship was blown off course and forced to land in Rome. Taking this as a sign, Alexis, still disguised as a beggar, returned to his parents' house, where he sat at the gates, unrecognized by any of his family. His father, not knowing who he was, allowed him to live in a hut in his courtyard. There Alexis spent another seventeen years, living only on bread and water. He died clutching a piece of paper on which he had revealed his true identity. At the time of his death, the pope of Rome heard a voice saying "Look for the Man of God," and revealing where he should look. It is said that the Emperor Honorius, the Pope and a large retinue came to the house, where they found Alexis dead in his tiny hut, his face shining like the sun. His parents and wife were at first overcome with grief to learn that their son and husband had been secretly living near them, but they were comforted when they saw that his body healed the sick and exuded a fragrant myrrh. Thus they knew that God had glorified him. His head is preserved at the Church of St Laurus on the Peloponnese.
"He was the brother of the Apostle Barnabas and was born in Cyprus. He was a follower of the Apostle Paul, who mentions him in his Epistle to the Romans (16:10). When the great Apostle Paul created many bishops for different parts of the world, he made this Aristobulus bishop of Britain (i.e. England). In Britain there was a wild people, pagan and wicked, and Aristobulus endured among them unmentionable torments, misfortunes and malice. They smote him without mercy, dragged him through the streets, mocked him and jeered at him. But in the end this holy man came to success by the power of the grace of God. He enlightened the people, baptised them in the name of Christ the Lord, built churches, ordained priests and deacons and finally died there in peace and went to the Kingdom of the Lord whom he had served so faithfully." (Prologue) Note: in the Greek calendar he is commemorated on March 15.
Sensus Fidelium Catholic Podcast
"He was from the town of Side in Pamphylia. The Emperor Aurelian's governor asked him who he was, to which Alexander replied that he was a pastor of the flock of Christ. 'And where is this flock of Christ', further enquired the evil and suspicious governor. Alexander replied: 'Over the whole world live the people whom Christ the Lord created, among whom those who believe in Him are His sheep, but those who have fallen away from their Creator, who are enslaved to creation and the work of men's hands, to dead idols, such as you, are strangers to His flock, and at the Dreadful Judgement of God will be put to the left with the goats.' The wicked judge first commanded that he be whipped with iron flails and then thrown into a burning furnace. But the fire could in no way harm him. Then he was flayed and after that thrown to the wild beasts. But the beasts would not touch him. At last the governor ordered that he be beheaded. But as soon as the judge pronounced the sentence, an evil spirit took hold of him and made him rabid. He was led howling to his gods, the idols, but on the way the evil spirit wrested his wicked soul from him. St Alexander suffered between 270 and 275.' (Prologue) He is commemorated March 14 on the Greek calendar.
His name, Benedictus, means "Blessed" in Latin. He was born in 480 in Nursia, a small town northeast of Rome. He had only rudimentary schooling: he wrote later of his fear that through book-learning he might 'lose the great understanding of my soul.' At an early age he fled to a monastery where he was tonsured; he then withdrew to a remote mountain, where he lived or several years in a cave, perfecting himself in prayer. His only food was some bread brought to him by Romanus, the monk who had tonsured him. When he became known in the area, he fled his cave to escape the attentions of the pious; but flight proved useless, and in time a community of monks formed around him. He was granted many spiritual gifts: he healed the sick and drove out evil spirits, raised the dead, and appeared in visions to others many miles away. Benedict founded twelve monasteries, most famously that at Monte Cassino. Initially, each monastic house had twelve monks, to imitate the number of the Twelve Apostles. The Rule that he established for his monks was based on the works of St John Cassian and St Basil the Great, and became a standard for western monasteries. Thus he is sometimes called the first teacher of monks in the West. Six days before his death, the Saint ordered that his grave be opened, gathered all his monks together, gave them counsel, then gave his soul back to God on the day that he had predicted. At the moment of his death, two monks in different places had the same vision: they saw a path from earth to heaven, richly adorned and lined on either side with ranks of people. At the top of the path stood a man, clothed in light and unspeakably beautiful, who told them that the path was prepared for Benedict, the beloved of God. In this way, the monks learned that their abbot had gone to his rest.
His main commemoration is on June 2; today we commemorate the return of his holy relics to Constantinople. Nicephoros was Patriarch during the time of the iconoclasts, and openly opposed the Emperor Leo the Armenian's heretical policies. For this he was exiled to a monastery on the island of Prochonis, which he himself had built when Patriarch. After living there for thirteen years, he reposed around 827. In time, the iconoclast Emperors died, and the Emperor Michael, with his mother Theodora, came to the Imperial throne in 842; they appointed Methodios, a defender of the icons, as Patriarch. In 846, the incorrupt relics of St Nicephoros were returned to Constantinople and placed first in the Hagia Sophia, then in the Church of the Holy Apostles. The saint had been driven from Constantinople on March 13, and his relics were returned there on March 13, nineteen years later to the day.
歡迎留言告訴我們你對這一集的想法： https://open.firstory.me/user/cl81kivnk00dn01wffhwxdg2s/comments 每日英語跟讀 Ep.K534: Earthquakes Destroy. People Rebuild. She wanted to retrieve her medicine, and if memory serves all these years later, also a hairbrush and a photograph from her apartment. 她想拿回她的藥，若經過這麼多年沒記錯的話，還想拿回一把梳子跟她公寓裡的一張照片。 It was in 2009, a couple of days after an earthquake flattened L'Aquila, the capital of Abruzzo, in central Italy. Authorities had closed the city to residents, but the woman and her sister had sneaked in. I found her leaning on a cane in a broken, empty plaza staring up at a midcentury building that the quake had somehow sheared horizontally so that it looked like a pot with its lid askew. 那是在2009年，義大利中部阿布魯佐大區首府拉奎拉遭地震夷成平地的幾天後。當局已禁止居民進入該城，但這位婦女跟她妹妹偷溜進去。我發現，她站在一個破敗、空曠的廣場上，拄著一根拐杖盯著一座上世紀中葉的建築物，地震不知以何種方式水平橫切該建築物，看起來就像一個蓋子歪掉的鍋子。 She asked for help. 她尋求援助。 From afar, we measure catastrophes like the calamity in Turkey and Syria by totaling the numbers of dead and buildings destroyed. Reports describe a spectacularly wide disaster zone, recovery efforts that are too slow, leaving untold hundreds and possibly thousands of victims still buried, alive and dead, under the rubble — and hundreds of thousands more in the cold without homes, food, drinking water or medical supplies. 從遠處看，我們透過罹難人數和建築物被摧毀總數，衡量像土耳其和敘利亞的災難。有報導描述一個驚人的廣大災區，復原工作過於緩慢，數百名甚至數千名受害者恐仍被埋在廢墟下，生死未卜，還有數十萬人在寒冷環境中生活，沒有房子、食物、飲用水或醫療用品。 It is too much to process, the loss of lives and history. The tiny Jewish community in Antakya, in central Turkey, dates back 2,500 years. The head of the community and his wife both died in the quake. The city's synagogue is now gone. 生命和歷史的逝去讓人難以接受。土耳其中部安塔基亞的小猶太社區可追溯至2500年前。社區負責人和他的妻子都在地震中喪生。這座城市的猶太教堂現已不復存在。 The Habibi Neccar Mosque collapsed, too. The earthquake's destruction was ecumenical. The mosque dates back to 638. It was a church and a mosque, depending on who ruled the city. Over the centuries, authority passed from the caliphs to the Byzantines, who succumbed to Seljuks, who were ousted by the Crusaders, who ceded to Mamluks, who were replaced by Ottomans, and eventually Antakya was annexed by Turkey. The quake erased whole swathes of history. 哈比卜內卡清真寺也倒塌了。地震造成廣泛破壞。這座清真寺的歷史可追溯至公元638年。它是一座教堂，也是座清真寺，取決於誰統治這座城市。數個世紀以來，權力從哈里發傳到屈服於塞爾柱人的拜占庭，十字軍驅逐塞爾柱人後將城市割讓給馬木留克人，馬木留克人則被鄂圖曼人取代，最終安塔基亞被土耳其併吞。地震則抹去了整個歷史。 The biblical city of Antioch, Antakya is also where the word “Christian” was supposedly first used. The Apostle Peter led the church there before establishing a church in Rome. Paul preached in Antioch. The quake collapsed the St. Paul Orthodox Church, as well. 安塔基亞是聖經中的安提阿城，據說也是「基督徒」一詞首次被使用的地方。使徒彼得建立羅馬教會以前，曾在當地帶領基督教。保羅也在安提阿傳道。地震也使得聖保羅東正教教堂倒塌。 L'Aquila, like Antakya, lies in a notorious earthquake zone. A quake in L'Aquila in 1349 killed 800 residents; another in 1703 killed more than 3,000, prompting Pope Clement XI to send priests and nuns freed of their celibacy to repopulate the city. 拉奎拉和安塔基亞一樣，位在惡名昭彰的地震帶上。拉奎拉1349年的一場地震，造成800個居民喪生，1703年的另一場地震導致3000多人死亡，促使教宗克勉十一世派遣不再守貞的神父和修女，提供這座城市新生命。 You may rightly ask about the logic of rebuilding time and again in these risky places. But logic is not the point. 你可能會問，在這些危險地方一次又一次重建的邏輯為何，但邏輯並不是重點。 Cities are only nominally bricks and mortar, after all. To residents they are repositories of a hairbrush and a photograph — collective threads of a social fabric that, over time, weave together a life, a family, a history, a neighborhood, a community. 城市畢竟只是表面上的實體建築。對居民來說，它們是一把梳子和一張照片的倉庫，一個社會結構的集體線索，將一個生活、一個家庭、一段歷史、一個鄰居和一個社區逐漸編織在一起。 The city was still a shambles. But it was home. 這座城市仍然一片狼藉，但它是家。Source article: https://udn.com/news/story/6904/6994223 Powered by Firstory Hosting
Alex and Benjamin dive into the thought of Byzantine Emperor Manuel II Palaiologos. Ruler of a rump state that increasingly lacked the capacity to defend its territory, Manuel focused on trying to discern the things emperors could control from the things they couldn't. He tarries with some of the most frustrating issues in Christian ethics, all in the service of preparing his heir.
He was born in Rome to a wealthy senatorial family. He received a good education in secular and spiritual learning, and became Prefect of Rome. While still in the world, he used his great wealth mostly for the good of the Church, building six monasteries in Sicily and another in Rome itself. At this monastery, dedicated to the Apostle Andrew, Gregory was tonsured a monk. He was appointed Archdeacon of Rome, then, in 579, Papal legate to Constantinople, where he lived for nearly seven years. He returned to Rome in 585 and was elected Pope in 590. He is famed for his many writings, his generous charity (he gave almost all his income to the poor, and often invited the poor to share his table), and for initiating missionary work among the Anglo-Saxon peoples. The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts, celebrated on Wednesday and Friday evenings during Great Lent, was compiled by him. St Gregory introduced elements of the chanting that he had heard in Constantinople into Western Church chant: The Gregorian Chant which beautified the Western churches for many years is named for him. Its system of modes is related to the eight tones of the Eastern church. He is called 'the Dialogist' after his book The Dialogues, an account of the lives and miracles of Italian saints. Saint Gregory reposed in peace in 604.
He was born in Damascus to an eminent family, and was well educated in his youth. Discontented with the wisdom of the world, he entered monastic life in the monastery of St Theodosius, where he became the lifelong friend and disciple of John Moschos. Together they visited the monasteries and hermitages of Egypt; they later wrote down their discoveries among the holy monks in the classic Spiritual Meadow. After the death of his teacher, St Sophronius traveled to Jerusalem, which had just been liberated from the Persians. He was there to see the Precious Cross returned from Persia by the Emperor Heraclius, who carried it into Jerusalem on his back. A few years later, in 634, St Sophronius was elected Patriarch of Jerusalem, where he served his flock wisely for three years and three months. He was zealous in the defense of Orthodoxy against the Monothelite heresy: He convoked a Council in Jerusalem which condemned it before it was condemned at the Sixth Ecumenical Council. The holy Patriarch even traveled to Constantinople to rebuke the Patriarch Sergius and Emperor Heraclius, who had embraced the Monothelite error. The years of peace were few for the Holy Land; for just as the Persian Empire was decisively defeated by Heraclius, the followers of Islam erupted out of Arabia, conquering most of North Africa and the Middle East in a few years. The Saint was so grieved by the capture of Jerusalem in 637 by the Caliph Omar that begged God to take him, so that he might not live to see the desecration of the holy places. His prayer was granted, and he reposed in peace less than a year later. St Sophronios is the author of the Life of Saint Mary of Egypt, appointed to be read in the churches during every Great Lent. He also wrote the service of the Great Blessing of the Waters. Some have attributed the Vesperal hymn "Gladsome Light" to him, but we know that it dates from before the time of St Basil the Great, who mentions it in his writings. It seems though, that St Sophronios supplemented the hymn, and that its present form is due to him.
'In a time of persecution of Christians, many of the faithful fled to the mountains and caves. The mother of this Codratus did so. She was pregnant at that time, and gave birth to Codratus in a forest, dying almost at once. He was kept safe and fed by the providence of God and his guardian angel. Codratus grew up in solitude with nature. He who gave manna from heaven to the Israelites in the wilderness released a sweet dew from a cloud onto the mouth of the child Codratus. When he was twelve years old, he went down to the town, and there some good people took a fancy to him and educated him. He studied medicine and then began to heal the sick, using both natural medicines and, more importantly, the spiritual power and prayer which had been with him from childhood. When a new persecution arose under Decius, Codratus was taken for trial and thrown into prison. Five of his friends stood beside him and confessed the name of Christ. They were: Cyprian, Dionysius, Anectus, Paul and Crescens. They were all dragged through the streets and struck with sticks and stones by the unbelievers, especially by the children, until they arrived at the scaffold. Here the martyrs prayed to God and were beheaded with the sword. A spring of water gushed out onto the earth at the spot, which to this day is called by Codratus' name and commemorates the heroic death for Christ of the holy six. They suffered with honour for the truth in Corinth in the year 250, in the time of the Emperor Decius and his governor Jason.' (Prologue)
They were all soldiers under one general, taken captive in the time of Licinius for their faith in Christ. They were stripped naked and cast onto a frozen lake at Sebastia in Pontus. They endured the entire night, encouraging each other to be patient. Some accounts say that their persecutors placed warm baths in their sight on the shore to entice them to renounce Christ. Finally one of their number, broken by his sufferings, apostatized and left the company. One of the guards, named Aglaius, saw in a vision thirty-nine wreaths descending from heaven onto the heads of the faithful sufferers, and was moved to declare himself a Christian. He was immediately sent to join the martyrs on the frozen lake, keeping the number of forty complete. In the morning all of them, almost dead, were cast into fire, and their remains thrown in the lake. On the third day the martyrs appeared to Peter, the local bishop, and told him to search for them in the lake. The bishop went to the lake on a dark night with his clergy, and one account says that the bones of the martyrs rose to the surface and burned there like a candle. The relics were gathered and given honorable burial. This is the most common account. The Prologue gives a somewhat different version, in which the martyrs were made to stand, not on the frozen lake, but in the freezing waters.
The extraordinary array of images included in The Middle Ages in 50 Objects (Cambridge UP, 2018) reveals the full and rich history of the Middle Ages. Exploring material objects from the European, Byzantine and Islamic worlds, the book casts a new light on the cultures that formed them, each culture illuminated by its treasures. The objects are divided among four topics: The Holy and the Faithful; The Sinful and the Spectral; Daily Life and Its Fictions, and Death and Its Aftermath. Each section is organized chronologically, and every object is accompanied by a penetrating essay that focuses on its visual and cultural significance within the wider context in which the object was made and used. Spot maps add yet another way to visualize and consider the significance of the objects and the history that they reveal. Lavishly illustrated, this is an appealing and original guide to the cultural history of the Middle Ages. Elina Gertsman is a professor of Art History at Case Reserve Western University. She specializes in medieval art. Barbara H. Rosenwein is Professor Emerita at Loyola University Chicago. She is an expert in medieval history, on which she has written a number of influential works. Morteza Hajizadeh is a Ph.D. graduate in English from the University of Auckland in New Zealand. His research interests are Cultural Studies; Critical Theory; Environmental History; Medieval (Intellectual) History; Gothic Studies; 18th and 19th Century British Literature. YouTube channel. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/art
"Theophylact was from the east; his native city is unknown. In Constantinople he became a close friend of Tarasius, who afterwards became Patriarch of Constantinople (see Feb. 25). Theophylact was made Bishop of Nicomedia. After the death of Saint Tarasius, his successor Nicephorus (see June 2) called together a number of Bishops to help him in fighting the iconoclasm of Emperor Leo the Armenian, who reigned from 813 to 820. Among them was Euthymius, Bishop of Sardis (celebrated Dec. 26), who had attended the holy Seventh Ecumenical Council in 787 — he was exiled three times for the sake of the holy icons, and for defying the Emperor Theophilus' command to renounce the veneration of the icons, was scourged from head to foot until his whole body was one great wound, from which he died eight days later, about the year 830; Joseph of Thessalonica (see July 14); Michael of Synnada (see May 23); Emilian, Bishop of Cyzicus (see Aug. 8); and Saint Theophylact, who boldly rebuked Leo to his face, telling him that because he despised the long-suffering of God, utter destruction was about to overtake him, and there would be none to deliver him. For this, Theophylact was exiled to the fortress of Strobilus in Karia of Asia Minor, where after 30 years of imprisonment and hardship, he gave up his holy soul about the year 845. Leo the Armenian, according to the Saint's prophecy, was slain in church on the eve of our Lord's Nativity, in 820." (Great Horologion)
The extraordinary array of images included in The Middle Ages in 50 Objects (Cambridge UP, 2018) reveals the full and rich history of the Middle Ages. Exploring material objects from the European, Byzantine and Islamic worlds, the book casts a new light on the cultures that formed them, each culture illuminated by its treasures. The objects are divided among four topics: The Holy and the Faithful; The Sinful and the Spectral; Daily Life and Its Fictions, and Death and Its Aftermath. Each section is organized chronologically, and every object is accompanied by a penetrating essay that focuses on its visual and cultural significance within the wider context in which the object was made and used. Spot maps add yet another way to visualize and consider the significance of the objects and the history that they reveal. Lavishly illustrated, this is an appealing and original guide to the cultural history of the Middle Ages. Elina Gertsman is a professor of Art History at Case Reserve Western University. She specializes in medieval art. Barbara H. Rosenwein is Professor Emerita at Loyola University Chicago. She is an expert in medieval history, on which she has written a number of influential works. Morteza Hajizadeh is a Ph.D. graduate in English from the University of Auckland in New Zealand. His research interests are Cultural Studies; Critical Theory; Environmental History; Medieval (Intellectual) History; Gothic Studies; 18th and 19th Century British Literature. YouTube channel. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/history
The extraordinary array of images included in The Middle Ages in 50 Objects (Cambridge UP, 2018) reveals the full and rich history of the Middle Ages. Exploring material objects from the European, Byzantine and Islamic worlds, the book casts a new light on the cultures that formed them, each culture illuminated by its treasures. The objects are divided among four topics: The Holy and the Faithful; The Sinful and the Spectral; Daily Life and Its Fictions, and Death and Its Aftermath. Each section is organized chronologically, and every object is accompanied by a penetrating essay that focuses on its visual and cultural significance within the wider context in which the object was made and used. Spot maps add yet another way to visualize and consider the significance of the objects and the history that they reveal. Lavishly illustrated, this is an appealing and original guide to the cultural history of the Middle Ages. Elina Gertsman is a professor of Art History at Case Reserve Western University. She specializes in medieval art. Barbara H. Rosenwein is Professor Emerita at Loyola University Chicago. She is an expert in medieval history, on which she has written a number of influential works. Morteza Hajizadeh is a Ph.D. graduate in English from the University of Auckland in New Zealand. His research interests are Cultural Studies; Critical Theory; Environmental History; Medieval (Intellectual) History; Gothic Studies; 18th and 19th Century British Literature. YouTube channel. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/new-books-network
The Italian Renaissance Podcast
The foundational myths and stories of Venice revolve around the importance of Saint Mark the Evangelist and Venetian relations to Alexandria. In this discussion, we sort through the stories about the theft of his body, the construction of his basilica, and how this influences art and society in Renaissance Venice - namely in painting. Through Gentile and Giovanni Bellini, and Tintoretto, paintings of the legend of Saint Mark and the link to Alexandria gives us a means to read Venetian identity, which is thoroughly explored in this episode. Instagram: italian_renaissance_podcast Support the show! https://www.paypal.com/donate/?business=4HTBBJSUX4BQN&no_recurring=0¤cy_code=USD Support the show
These seven holy Bishops give a vivid picture of the dangers endured by those who traveled to proclaim the Gospel of Christ in the early centuries of the Church. All seven were sent as missionary bishops to Cherson on the Black Sea, and all seven died there as Martyrs. Hermon, Bishop of Jerusalem, first sent Ephraim and Basileus; Basileus raised the son of the prince of Cherson to life, after which many believed and were baptized. The unbelievers, though, bound him by the feet and dragged him through the streets until he died. Ephraim was beheaded when he refused to make sacrifice to the idols. Eugenios, Agathodoros, and Elpidios were then sent by the Bishop of Jerusalem; they were beaten to death with rods and stones. Aetherius was sent during the reign of Constantine the Great, and was able to govern the Church in freedom and peace, and to build a church in Cherson. Capito, the last to be sent, brought the Gospel to the fierce Scythians. To prove the power of his God, they asked him to go into a burning furnace, saying that if he was not consumed, they would believe. Putting all his trust in God, the holy Bishop vested himself, made the sign of the Cross, and entered the furnace. He stood in the flames, fervently praying, for an hour, and came out untouched. The spectators cried out 'There is one God, the great and powerful God of the Christians, who keeps His servant safe in the burning furnace!', and all those in the town and the surrounding countryside were baptized. This miracle was spoken of at the Council of Nicea (325). Later, Scythian unbelievers captured Capito and drowned him in the River Dnieper. The Prologue says that Aetherios ended his life in peace; the Great Horologion, that he was drowned. All these holy missionaries labored around the beginning of the fourth century.
They were taken captive when Amorion in Phrygia fell to the Muslims in 838, during the reign of Emperor Theophilus. Many of them were officers, and because of their status and reputation, their captors, rather than kill them, attempted to convert them to Islam. The forty-two were kept in a miserable dungeon in Syria, where they were alternately promised the highest honors and privileges if they would convert and threatened with the most horrible consequences if they refused. This continued for seven full years, but none would deny his faith in Christ. Finally, unable to shake their faith, their captors beheaded them all in 845.
St Mark was a disciple of St John Chrysostom, tonsured a monk at the age of forty by St John himself. He then withdrew to the Nitrian desert and lived for sixty years as a hermit, devoting himself to fasting, prayer, and writing spiritual discourses. Saint Mark knew all the Holy Scriptures by heart. His compassion was so great that he wept at the distress of any of God's creatures: once he wept for the blind pup of a hyena, and the pup received its sight. Though he lived alone in the desert, it is said that he received Communion from an angel. The holy and scholarly Patriarch Photios held his writings in the highest esteem, and at one time there was a saying, 'sell all that you have, and buy Mark.' Some of these beautiful and profound writings may be read in English in the first volume of the Philokalia.
"He lived in the sixth century. He was so perfected in godliness that he was able to heal the gravest illnesses by his prayers. But the enemy of the human race brought a heavy temptation on him. There was once sent to him a woman who had been corrupted by some mockers. She pretended to weep before him, but enticed him to sin. Seeing that he would fall into sin, James put his left hand into the fire and held it there until it was completely burned. Seeing this, the woman was filled with fear and horror, repented and reformed her life. "But on a second occasion he did not resist and fell with a young girl whom her parents had brought to him to be healed of her madness. He indeed healed her, but then sinned with her and, in order to conceal the sin, killed her and threw her into a river. As always, the path from lust to murder was not very long. James spent ten years after that as a penitent, living in a grave. He learned after that that God had forgiven him, because, when he at one time prayed for rain in a time of great drought from which both men and cattle were suffering, it fell. "Here is an example, similar to that of David, of how wicked the evil demon is; how, by the permission of God, the greatest spiritual giants can topple, and how again, by sincere repentance, God in His compassion will forgive the greatest sins and does not punish those who punish themselves." (Prologue)
They were fellow-soldiers and kinsmen of St Theodore the Tyro (Feb. 17). When St Theodore received his martyrdom, they were kept in prison because the governor of Amasia was unwilling to execute them. But a new and crueler governor, Asclepiodotus, took his place and ordered the three soldiers of Christ to be brought to him. At first, the governor used flattery and bribery to attempt to turn the three from Christ. He invited Eutropius to dine with him, but Eutropius refused, quoting the Psalm 'Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsels of the ungodly.' He then offered them a huge amount of silver, which they likewise refused, telling the governor that Judas lost his soul for silver. The governor then turned to torture, subjecting the three to extreme torments. At last, he condemned Eutropius and Cleonicus to crucifixion, for which they joyfully gave thanks that they had been found worthy to die the same death as Christ. Basiliscus was held in prison awhile longer in hopes that the deaths of his companions would weaken his resolve; but when he remained steadfast in the Faith, he was beheaded, on May 22 (on which he is also commemorated) in 308.
This pious and beautiful maiden lived in a village near Thessalonica. One day a Janissary, come to collect taxes, laid eyes on her and was struck by lust. When she refused his advances, the wicked official brought her before the judge in Thessalonica and, using other soldiers as false witnesses, said that she had agreed to marry him and to convert to Islam. To all these claims Kyranna replied, 'I am a Christian, and I have no bridegroom but Christ, to whom I have offered my maidenhood as a dowry. Him I love and for Him I am ready to shed my blood! That is my answer; expect no other from me.' Having said this, she 'enclosed herself in silence' (Synaxarion) and would testify no more. She was cast into prison, where she was tormented and finally beaten to death by her jailer. When she died, a divine Light surrounded her and illumined the entire prison. When news of the miracle spread, the shamed Turkish officials handed over her body to Christians, who laid it to rest outside the city.
Eudocia was from Heliopolis of Phoenicia (now Baalbek in Lebanon). A surpassingly beautiful pagan, she led a licentious life and became wealthy from the gifts of her many lovers. One day an elderly monk, Germanus, came to Heliopolis and stayed with a Christian whose house adjoined Eudocia's. At night, he began to read aloud from the Psalter and a book on the Last Judgment. From next-door, Eudocia heard him. Her heart was reached, and she stood attentively all night, listening to every word in fear and contrition. The next day she begged Germanus to visit her, and he explained the saving Christian faith to her. Finally, Eudocia asked the local bishop to baptise her. She freed her servants, gave all her wealth to the poor, and entered a monastery. "Her former lovers, enraged at her conversion, her refusal to return to her old ways, and the withering away of her beauty through the severe mortifications she practiced, betrayed her as a Christian to Vincent the Governor, and she was beheaded"(Great Horologion). According to some,this was under Trajan (98-117); according to others, under Hadrian (117-138). The Prologue gives a somewhat different account: that after entering the monastery, Eudocia was permitted to pursue the monastic life in peace — with such devotion that, thirteen months after she entered the monastery, she was chosen as abbess. She lived for fifty-six years in the monastery, and was granted the gift of raising the dead. In her old age, a persecution of Christians arose, and Eudocia was beheaded along with many others. "Here is a wonderful example of how a vessel of uncleanness can be purified, sanctified and filled with a precious, heavenly fragrance by the grace of the Holy Spirit" (Prologue).
Known for his wisdom and virtue, he was chosen as Bishop of Cyrenia on the island of Cyprus. When a persecution broke out against the Christians under the Emperor Licinius, Theodotus was arrested and subjected to many tortures. His torturer Sabinus urged him repeatedly to renounce Christ and worship the idols, but Theodotus replied, 'If you knew the goodness of my God, who, it is my hope, will by these brief tortures make me worthy of eternal life, you would wish to suffer for Him as I do.' The pagans then drove nails into his body, for which he thanked God. Believing that his death was approaching, he calmly gave counsel and instruction to the Christians around him. By God's providence, an order came from the new Emperor Constantine to free all Christians who were being held for the sake of Christ. Thus Theodotus was freed and, though greatly weakened by his torments, served his flock faithfully for two more years before reposing in peace.
First of five sessions on the Holy Mass:IntroductionWhat is the Mass? Most practicing Catholics understand that Mass is important. It is something they should go to. But the opinions about Mass are all over the ideological spectrum. For this series, my hope is to share what the Mass is from the Mind and Heart of the Church. I have my opinions about liturgical aesthetics, architecture, art, and the like, but I am going to try here to stick to principles. I make my promise here to you that if I offer an opinion, I will explicitly make sure that you know it is an opinion. So, today, in part 1 we will be answering the broad question: What is the Sacred Liturgy? We are going to be going lightspeed over a vast amount of ground, but I hope that it is, nonetheless, sufficiently explained. In part 2 - 5, we will be looking at the Introductory Rites, the Liturgy of the Word, the Liturgy of the Eucharist, and the Concluding Rites. These four main divisions are packed with theological meaning, symbolism, and beauty. I am thrilled to be sharing it with you.The Sacred and Divine LiturgyEtymology of the Word “Liturgy”We should begin our exploration of the Sacred Liturgy by understanding what that word liturgy means. What is the liturgy? It is certainly a strange word to an English-speaker. Liturgy comes from two Greek words: leitos meaning public and ergo meaning to do. The Greek word for liturgy is leitourgos which is the same as the Latin word lictor, which both mean a public servant. In ancient Athens, public service was done by wealthier citizens by using their own wealth. This public service could be the manager of a gymnasium, the chorus singers in a theater, one who provides a banquet, or someone who funds and offers ships used for war to the state. In the Greek Old Testament, the term liturgy meant any kind of general service in the temple.The author of Hebrews states, “But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry (Greek: leitourgos) that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises (Heb. 8:6).” So, the meaning of liturgy in the New Testament is established as the actions of the priest after the order of the High Priest Jesus Christ. Since we are speaking of terms, it is worth mentioning that in the Eastern Catholic Churches, the term liturgy is only used to describe the Divine Liturgy, that is, the celebration of the Sacrifice of the Holy Eucharist. In the West, including the Latin Rite, the term liturgy is used for the Sacred Liturgy, which is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. But, liturgy is also used for all official services, all the various rites, ceremonies, prayers, and sacraments of the Church. —--------------We could also ask what liturgy is not. Liturgy is not private devotions. Devotional practices are indispensable and beautiful expressions of the heart of man being offered in love to God. Liturgy, on the other hand, is primarily what God is doing for us, through the ministry of the Church, in which we enter in and take part. In the Liturgy, God is reaching into our humanity, as He did when the Son became Flesh, and lifting us up to be more like Him.St. Justin Martyr records around the year 164 A.D. what the Liturgy looked like in his day, early in the history of the Church. The full quotation can be found in paragraph 1345 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, but I will summarize it.First, the Lessons are read. The Lessons are the Old and New Testament Scripture readings. Then a sermon is given by the bishop. There are prayers over the people, both those present and those throughout the whole world. The Sign of Peace is exchanged. The offering of bread and wine and water are brought up by the deacons. There is a lengthy prayer of thanksgiving done by the bishop. The bread and wine are consecrated by the words of Christ spoken at the Last Supper and they become the Eucharist. The people then acclaim Amen. Then, Holy Communion is distributed to those present and then taken to those who cannot be in attendance.Here we see that there is a structure to the Sacred Liturgy and there is human involvement and participation. But, as we will come to see, the Sacred Liturgy is about the work that God has done and is doing, in which we enter in and take part.Liturgical Diversity in the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic ChurchOver the next few sessions, we will be exploring the Holy Mass of the Latin Rite using our current Missal. But I will also be touching on some historical points of references in the Roman Missal of 1962 and before. And I will also be bringing in elements of the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom used in the Byzantine Rites. What the Liturgy is, which is our subject for the remainder of today's session, does not change from one form or expression of the Liturgy to another. However, there is a beautiful, legitimate liturgical diversity within the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church of Jesus Christ. Over the last centuries, the Church has been welcoming back many groups of Byzantine Catholics into full communion with the Pope in Rome. These Byzantine Greek Churches are called sui iuris because they govern themselves, under the authority of the Pope, but they retain their language, customs, rituals, and the like. Likewise, there are other non-Byzantine Eastern Catholic Churches in full communion with Rome. Thus, the Catholic Church is far broader than just the Latin Rite, though the Latin Rite is the largest.What is the Definition of the Mass?Now we have a working understanding of the Sacred Liturgy as transcending each specific Rite of the Catholic Church. But what is it? What is the Mass? Dr. Scott Hahn of Franciscan University is fond of referring to the Mass as the continuation through space and time of the incarnation. Dr. David Fagerberg of Notre Dame speaks of it in highly technical terms: The perichoresis of the Trinity kenotically extended to invite our synergistic ascent into deification.There is a time for academic and technical explanations of the Mass! I, for one, love them! But what about the average Catholic in the pew or the lapsed Catholic? Surely there is a way to define the Mass that is in simpler terms without watering down the meaning.I will be repeating the following about three thousand times over the coming weeks because it is vital to our understanding of the Mass. At any rate, here it is:The Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the perfect self-offering of God to the Son to God the Father in the power of God the Holy Spirit in which we are invited to participate and grow in our communion with God. Put even more simply: the Mass is the self-offering of the Son to the Father in the Spirit, in which we are invited to take part. What is the Sacred Liturgy “For”?Now that we have defined what the Mass is, then we can ask: What is it for? Why do we go to Mass? For many, it is a checking of the boxes. Yes, I went to Mass on Sunday and received my “spiritual vitamin pill.” But is that it? Is it about “getting something” out of Mass? Is it primarily something we are doing?From our definition, we know that Mass is the self-offering of the Son to the Father in the Spirit, in which we are invited to take part. It is something that God is doing and we are privileged to be beckoned to the Wedding Supper of the Lamb! So, what is Mass for? Why do we go? We go to encounter and worship God in the authentic way that He desires and be transformed by that encounter.There are two main ends of the Holy Mass: the glorification of God and the sanctification of man. Through the Sacraments (beginning with Baptism), God who became one of us dwells within us as in a Temple and makes us like Himself. Through this communion and union, we are made holy by God; this is the sanctification of man. As St. Irenaeus says in the 2nd Century: “The glory of God is man fully alive, but the life of man is the vision of God.” Apart from true worship, how can we be formed in the vision of God? How can we be fully alive and thus glorify God by our lives apart from the Mass? We cannot! As St. Padre Pio said, “It would be easier for the world to survive without the sun than to do so without the Holy Mass.”So, what is the Mass for? To glorify God and to allow His Sacred Action to make us holy. Re-presentation of the Paschal MysteryWhat is the one sacrifice of Christ?To understand the Sacred Action of the Holy Eucharist, we have to travel back in time two thousand years to Jerusalem. The Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the presenting once more, the “re-presentation,” of the One and only Sacrifice of Jesus Christ. It is the coming present once again to our senses, through the mystery of God, of the entrance into Jerusalem of Christ, the Last Supper, His suffering, His death on the Cross, His Resurrection, and His Ascension into Heaven. The Holy Mass marks all of these things, and makes them present to us, here and now, outside of time.The Holy Mass is a memorial of Jesus' suffering and death. It is not a reenactment nor is it mere remembering. In the Mass, by the power of God, these saving actions become truly present under the signs and symbols that God uses to communicate with us. He knows that we are flesh and blood. He knows that we are body and soul. So, He communicates with us through tangible signs, audible words, ritual actions, postures, and gestures. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches, “The Eucharist, the sacrament of our salvation accomplished by Christ on the cross, is also a sacrifice of praise in thanksgiving for the work of creation… The Eucharist is the memorial of Christ's Passover, the making present and the sacramental offering of his unique sacrifice, in the liturgy of the Church which is his Body (CCC 1359, 1362).” In Christ, all things are restored and made new. Primarily, we enter into this saving reality through our Baptism into Christ and His Body, the Church. In Baptism, we are a new creation. Baptism then orders us to communion with Him in receiving truly and substantially His Most Holy Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity. The Catechism goes on to teach that, “In the Eucharist Christ gives us the very body which he gave up for us on the cross, the very blood which he ‘poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins'… The Eucharist is thus a sacrifice because it re-presents (makes present) the sacrifice of the cross, because it is its memorial and because it applies its fruit (CCC 1365-6).”How are the graces that Christ super-abundantly merited on the Holy Cross applied to us, almost two thousand years later? It is, first, through Baptism, but it is perpetuated in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. This One Sacrifice of Jesus Christ is presented once more in an unbloodied manner so that we may receive the fruits of this great gift. Thus, the Holy Eucharist has the power to forgive sins, by the blood of Jesus Christ. United as one Body, the Church offers this One Sacrifice until the end of time for the good of the Church and the good of the whole world. Each time our Holy Mother the Church celebrates the sacred mysteries, it is Christ who is the High Priest, the Saving Victim, the Place of Sacrifice, and our Mediator between God and man. Apart from Him, we can do nothing. So, the Mass is not what we do for God. It is the perfect prayer and sacrifice offered by Jesus Christ to the Father in the Spirit because it is the whole of the saving action of Christ transcending time and space. As lacking as we are and as sinful as we are, we enter into this reality of the One Sacrifice. Our imperfect offerings and sacrifices are united with the One Sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the Cross and are made perfect. We cooperate with the One Sacrifice and we receive the saving fruits of the One Sacrifice. By the mediation of Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit to the glorification of the Father, we are made holy and we are transformed to be like Jesus. Every Sunday is a Mini EasterAs Catholics, we understand that at the Mass, in true worship, this Sacred Action is not a mere remembrance or a reenactment. These realities are coming present once again. So, it is fitting that every Sunday is a Holy Day of Obligation because every Sunday is a mini Easter. How does this fit in the ancient understanding of Sabbath?The seventh day of the week is the sabbath, a day of solemn rest, that is set aside for the Lord. This goes all the way back to the dawn of creation when God made everything in six days and then rested on the seventh. The Sabbath day also marks the work of the Lord of acting on Israel's behalf and freeing them from slavery in Egypt. The Sabbath is a day of rest and refreshment. Jesus shows us in the Gospels that this does not necessarily mean refraining from all work, without exception. Instead, we must realize that the poor are to be refreshed as well. And so, the Sabbath is a day of doing good for others as well. As with many things, the New Covenant fulfills and elevates the Old Covenants. The Sabbath remains on Saturday, but Sunday is the fulfillment of the Sabbath. Sunday is the “eighth day” of the week and is symbolic of the new creation which was brought about by the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jesus rose from the dead on the “first day of the week” and, therefore, consecrated a new moral commandment. We are to keep holy the day of the Lord by celebrating Sunday in an “outward, visible, public, and regular worship ‘as a sign of universal beneficence to all (CCC 2176).'” Our Sunday worship is the fulfillment of the moral command of the Old Covenant to keep holy the Sabbath day. The Sunday celebration of the Eucharist, on the day set aside for the Lord, is the heart of the Church's life. When we celebrate the Sunday Eucharist, we are marking the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In this way, every Sunday of the year is a mini-Easter.The faithful gather together each Sunday and celebrate in the liturgical life what Christ has done, Who He is, what He has taught, and what He is doing through us today. Therefore, we go to church each Sunday, as well as holy days of obligation.As St. John Chrysostom said, “You cannot pray at home as at church, where there is a great multitude, where exclamations are cried out to God as from one great heart, and where there is something more: the union of minds, the accord of souls, the bond of charity, the prayers of the priests.” Catholics are obligated and privileged to participate in the Holy Mass on Sundays and other holy days of obligation. The Eucharist is the beginning of our life of grace, and it is the apex of the mountain for which we yearn. Unless we are excused for a serious reason such as illness or the care of an infant or dispensed by our pastor, we fall into grave sin if we skip on going to Mass on Sundays or holy days of obligation.We are not saved by ourselves. We need our brothers and sisters in Christ, and they need you and me. We must be present in the Parish to pray as a Eucharistic assembly. Of course, there are many places in the world where there is a severe shortage of priests. In these cases, even, the people gather to break open the Word and pray together. God rested on the seventh day from the work of creation. Therefore, the Lord's Day, the fulfillment of the Sabbath, must be marked by an enjoyment of “adequate rest and leisure to cultivate… familial, cultural, social, and religious lives (CCC 2184).”As much as possible, we are to refrain from “engaging in work or activities that hinder the worship owed to God, the joy proper to the Lord's Day, the performance of the works of mercy, and the appropriate relaxation of mind and body (CCC 2185).” We should not, however, neglect our duties to our family. As St. Augustine teaches, “The charity of truth seeks holy leisure – the necessity of charity accepts just work.”The Catechism of the Catholic Church also teaches that, “In respecting religious liberty and the common good of all, Christians should seek recognition of Sundays and the Church's holy days as legal holidays. They have to give everyone a public example of prayer, respect, and joy and defend their traditions as a precious contribution to the spiritual life of society (CCC 2188).”Even if our society does not recognize the Risen Lord, nonetheless, it is our joy and duty to witness to the joy of His Resurrection each Sunday. Every Sunday is a mini-Easter and should be celebrated as such!The Mass - True Worship and True CultureWe need the Holy Mass, but so does our modern culture. We have lost a sense of wonder and awe. Wonder and awe at the glory of the natural order is lost. Philosophers, theologians, political thinkers, and historians have debated the concept of the perfect world forever. In our fractured state, true consensus does not seem likely or possible in the court of public opinion. Without a concerted popular effort towards aiming at the same goal, the likelihood of achieving it is low. As to pride, it is not controversial to make the claim that most people today are either unabashedly or unwittingly self-focused. Mass helps us to get outside of ourselves because, as I hope I have shown by now, Mass is primarily what God is doing!If we reach back in History, we see that the greatest minds of science were motivated by wonder and awe at the majesty of God's creation. The foundational underpinnings of true progress and human flourishing comes from without, not within. What does a wonderless, blasé attitude do to a society? What becomes of culture? Putting the “Cult” Back in CultureWhat we need is to put the “cult” back in culture. Culture is connected intimately to worship. The root word is “cultus,” from which arises the English word “cult.” Cultus comes from the Latin verb colare which means “to till.” This is why we have the word agriculture (agri - field, cultus - till). In the Middle Ages, cultus came to mean adoration or veneration specifically. The prime act of worship is sacrifice. It is getting outside of oneself in order to show that worth is found outside of the self. Worship could thus be seen as “giving worth.” So, what happens when we lose a sense of wonder and awe? It's simple: we start to worship inwardly; we start to worship ourselves. Instead of the worship of one God, the replacement has been the worship of over seven billion “gods.” When every person is master of their own domain, then communal ties, even familial ties, begin to crumble. What would happen if we cultivate a sense of wonder and awe in our own life? I would imagine that we would start to be more appreciative and less cynical. We would be less pessimistic and more pragmatic, if not actually optimistic. We would have a longer viewpoint and shorter fuse. We would see beauty all around us instead of fixating on the ugly. We will understand that we are not the center of the universe but will not be lost to existentialist dread.Avoiding Existential DreadThis last thought is one of the most pressing. Given the loss of wonder and awe, our world has descended into meaningless existentialism. Shouting into the void in a primal scream is the only prescription for our nihilistic culture. Of course, if we recapture the sense of wonder and awe, then we realize that nihilism is itself nothing. We realize that there is something greater and that we are an important part of the whole. Fear of the Lord is the Beginning of True WisdomWonder and awe are not fixtures of a bygone era. They are the beginning of true wisdom. In fact, we could call them by their traditional name: “fear of the Lord.” This fear is a filial one, as a son to a father. When we begin to let God be God and understand that we are not, then we begin to see things differently. We take ourselves less seriously and take the Creator more seriously. We find ourselves, not “out there” or within, but rather where we place worth itself. This fear of the Lord and putting things right is the foundation of getting culture right. As then-Cardinal Ratzinger said in his book A New Song for the Lord: “Trivializing faith is not a new inculturation, but the denial of its culture and prostitution with the non culture.”Let us put the cultus back in culture, tilling and cultivating a sense of wonder, awe, and amazement. There is much to be grateful for in this world. It will not take long to recognize the Giver of the good gifts who gratuitously and generously generated all things and respond in gratitude. As we will explore in the coming weeks, the very word Eucharist means thanksgiving! So, how can we pray the Mass better? Begin with humility and gratitude! Conclusion: Worshiping God the Way that He WantsI want to end today by emphasizing that the Mass is primarily what God is doing. Jesus Christ is our High Priest in every age of the Church's History: in the catacombs, in the Byzantine period, in the Middle Ages, in the Renaissance, in the Counter Reformation, and up until today. We are invited to take part in what He is doing. Truly, the worship of God becomes unintelligible if it becomes separated from the Saving Action of Jesus Christ, offered to the Father, in the Spirit. In fact, this Sacrifice of the Mass is the heart of Christian worship. If we are not celebrating the memorial of the Paschal Mystery from the heart and ministry of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church of Jesus Christ, then we are not worshiping God as He desires and as He has instituted. This is why the Catholic Church calls the Holy Eucharist the font and apex or the source and summit of the Christian life. There is no Church, properly speaking, apart from the Eucharist and the Holy Mass. To reiterate the words of Padre Pio: “It would be easier for the world to survive without the sun than to do so without the Holy Mass.”There is so much more to say, even about the basic theological foundations of the Holy Mass, but this is just the beginning. I hope you will join me over the next four weeks as we continue to understand the Mass more fully and journey through Lent together towards Easter!Thanks for reading Will Wright Catholic! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work. Get full access to Will Wright Catholic Podcast at www.willwrightcatholic.com/subscribe
Since we have never been there in the podcast, we take some time to go back and give a very general overview of the northern Italian region of Trentino Alto Adige, perched up north between the duchy of Milan and the Republic of Venice with reference to the time we are in. We go through Romans, Goths, Byzantines, Lombards, Franks to get to the bishop-counts that characterise this area, such as George of Lichtenstein or Federico Vanga. We then see how Venice started to encroach and hear about a rather spectacular feat of overland fleet travel engineering.
He was born in Syria in 1860, in the waning years of the Ottoman Empire. In his childhood, his family took refuge in Lebanon after their parish priest, St Joseph of Damascus (July 10) was martyred; but they later returned to Damascus. In 1879 he was tonsured a monk and entered into the service of Patriarch Hierotheos of Antioch. The Balamand Seminary had been closed since 1840, but the young monk was offered a scholarship at the Constantinople Patriarchate's seminary at Halki. Returning to Syria with a theological degree, St Raphael became assistant to Gerasimos, the new Patriarch of Antioch, traveling and preaching on his behalf. After further studies in Kiev, he transferred to the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Moscow and for a time was professer of Arabic studies at the Theological Academy in Kazan. (At that time the downtrodden Orthodox of the Middle East received considerable aid and theological training from the Tsar and from the Church in Russia). In 1895 he was sent to the United States to shepherd the Arab Orthodox Community in New York, which was without a church or a priest. He quickly consecrated a chapel and with great energy set about the work of shepherding his flock there; but he was concerned not only for them but for the Arab Christian immigrants scattered through North America, most of whom were without a pastor and in danger of falling into heterodoxy or abandoning religious life. He traveled widely throughout the continent, visiting, counseling and serving Arab Christians, preaching, celebrating marriages and baptisms, receiving confessions and celebrating the Divine Liturgy, usually in private houses. In 1898 he published the first Orthodox prayer book in Arabic to appear in the New World. In 1899, he made a seven-month journey through forty-three American cities, seeking out the "scattered sheep" of the Church in America. His services were attended not only by Arabs but by Russians and Greeks, all of whom at that time depended on the Russian mission to North America. During this entire period, he held the official rank of Archimandrite, though his work and duties exceeded those of most bishops. In 1901, Patriarch Meletios was elected to the see of Antioch, the first Arab to occupy the patriarchal throne for 168 years. Several proposals were made to elect Archimandrite Raphael to a see in Syria; but he refused all such offers, pointing out the Orthodox people's great and little-met needs in North America. In 1904, the Moscow Patriarchate made him Bishop of Brooklyn, the first Orthodox bishop to be consecrated on American soil. He redoubled his already impressive pastoral work, ordaining priests to the many new parishes that he had founded, and assisting Saint Tikhon (then Bishop of North America) in the care of his huge diocese. In 1905 he laid the foundation of the Monastery of St Tikhon in Pennsylvania. The bishop saw the importance of integrating the faithful into the life of their new homeland, and was an early advocate of the use of English in American Church services. When Isabel Hapgood's Service Book — the first useful English translation of the Church's services — was published in 1906, he advocated its use in all his parishes. In 1912, St Raphael was found to be suffering from heart disease, but continued his exhausting pastoral work for two more years. In 1915 he was finally unable to continue, and reposed after two months' illness. When his relics were transported in 1998 from Brooklyn to Antiochian Village in Ligonier, PA, they were found to be incorrupt, and in 2000 he became the most recently glorified Saint of North America. In North America St Raphael is commemorated on the anniversary of his repose: February 27 on the Civil/New Calendar, February 14 on the Julian Calendar. He is also commemorated with the Synaxis of Saints of North America on the Second Sunday after Pentecost. The Patriarchate of Antioch also commemorates him, but on Saturday before the Synaxis of the Archangels (November 8).
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He was a nobleman born in Constantinople, and distinguished himself in a secular career, rising in the year 780 to the rank of protasecretis, Principal Secretary of State to the Emperor Constantine VI and his mother the Empress Irene, who was serving as regent. His life took a sudden turn when, in 784, Patriarch Paul IV resigned, recommending Tarasios as the only man capable of restoring the Patriarchate, ravaged by the iconoclast heresy, to true Faith and full communion with the other Patriarchates. Tarasios, though unwilling, was virtually forced to accept the Patriarchate by the rulers and the Senate: he agreed at last on condition that an Ecumenical Council be summoned immediately to put an end to the iconoclast heresy. In a few days he was raised from a layman through all the degrees of the clergy and on December 25 784, was consecrated Archbishop of Constantinople. At Saint Tarasios' insistence, the Imperial rulers summoned a Church Council, whch met at Constantinople in 786. Before its sessions had even begun, iconoclasts burst into the church and drove out the Fathers, who were forced to reconvene in Nicaea, where the first session opened. Patriarch Tarasios presided, and the Council concluded with a condemnation of the iconoclast heresy and the restoration of veneration of the holy images. As Archbishop, the Saint was a model of humility, compassion, and firmness in the Faith. He refused to have any servants and dressed simply, a living rebuke to the luxury that had corrupted the clergy at that time. His works of charity were so great that he became known to the people as 'the new Joseph': he founded hospices and shelters, distributed the Church's wealth freely to the poor, and often invited the poor to his own table to share his simple fare. He insisted on exercising all gentleness and mercy in restoring repentant heretics to the Church, a policy that met with opposition from the more severe leaders of the Studion monastery. At the same time he was unbending in the defense of the Faith: when the Emperor Constantine came of age he repudiated his wife Mary in order to marry Theodota, one of her servants. The Patriarch refused to bless the adulterous union and threatened the Emperor with excommunication if he persisted in sin. The Emperor had Tarasios imprisoned, forced his licit wife to enter a monastery, and found a priest, Joseph, to bless his second marriage. The following year Constantine was blinded and dethroned, and Tarasios regained his freedom. The holy Patriarch continued to serve his Church faithfully, occupying the episcopal throne for a total of twenty-six years. In his last years, despite a long and painful illness, he continued to serve the Divine Liturgy daily, supporting himself with his staff. In the year 806, serving at the altar, he began to chant from Psalm 85, Bow down thine ear, O Lord, and hear me, and gave up his soul to God. "In 820, the Emperor Leo the Armenian, who for seven years had supported the iconoclasts and had fiercely persecuted the Orthodox, had a disturbing dream. He saw a stern-looking Saint Tarasius ordering a man by the name of Michael to run Leo himself through with a sword. Six days later, Leo was in fact assasinated by Michael the Stammerer, who seized power... In physical appearance, Saint Tarasius is said to have closely resembled Saint Gregory the Theologian." (Synaxarion)