WILLIAM BERRUYER, of the illustrious family of the ancient Counts of Nevers, was educated by Peter the Hermit, Archdeacon of Soissons, his uncle by the mother's side. From his infancy William learned to despise the folly and emptiness of the world, to abhor its pleasures, and to tremble at its dangers. His only delight was in exercises of piety and in his studies, in which he employed his whole time with indefatigable application. He was made canon, first of Soissons and afterwards of Paris; but he soon resolved to abandon the world, and retired into the solitude of Grandmont, where he lived with great regularity in that austere Order until finally he joined the Cistercians, then in wonderful odor of sanctity. After some time he was chosen Prior of the Abbey of Pontigny, and afterwards became Abbot of Chaalis. On the death of Henri de Sully, Archbishop of Bourges, William was chosen to succeed him. The announcement of this new dignity which had fallen on him overwhelmed him with grief, and he would not have accepted the office had not the Pope and his General, the Abbot of Citeaux, commanded him to do so. His first care in his new position was to conform his life to the most perfect rules of sanctity. He redoubled all his austerities, saying it was incumbent on him now to do penance for others as well as for himself. He always wore a hair-shirt under his religious habit, and never added to his clothing in winter or diminished it in summer; he never ate any flesh-meat, though he had it at his table for strangers. When he drew near his end, he was, at his request, laid on ashes in his hair-cloth, and in this posture expired on the 10th of January, 1209. His body was interred in his cathedral, and, being honored by many miracles, was taken up in 1217, and in the year following William was canonized by Pope Honorius III.
Reflection. —The champions of faith prove the truth of their teaching no less by the holiness of their lives than by the force of their arguments. Never forget that to convert others we must first see to our own souls. you!
Lives Of The Saints By Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. Edition www.globalgrey.co.uk
Prayers and Reading for Today’s MASS
Ferial Day (The Holy Family, Jesus, Mary, Joseph)
Introit • Prov. 23, 24, 25
Let the father of the Just rejoice greatly; let thy father thy mother be joyful, and let her rejoice that bore thee. Ps. 82, 2, 3. How lovely are Thy tabernacles O Lord of hosts; my soul longeth and fainteh for the courts of the Lord. Glory be …
O Lord Jesus Christ, Who, in the days of Thy subjection to Mary and Joseph, didst consecrate home life by ineffable acts of virtue; by the intercession of Ty holy Mother and of Thy foster-Father, make us so to profit by the example thy with Thee have set us, that we may be counted members of Thy household for evermore. Who livest.
Epistle • Col. 3, 12-17
Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle to the Colossians.
[He exhorts them to put off the old man, and to put on the new. The duties of wives and husbands, children and servants.]
Brethren, put ye on therefore, as the elect of God, holy, and beloved, the bowels of mercy, benignity, humility, modesty, patience: Bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if any have a complaint against another: even as the Lord hath forgiven you, so do you also. But above all these things have charity, which is the bond of perfection: And let the peace of Christ rejoice in your hearts, wherein also you are called in one body: and be ye thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you abundantly, in all wisdom: teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles, singing in grace in your hearts to God. All whatsoever you do in word or in work, do ye things, do ye in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks to God and the Father through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Gradual • Ps. 26, 4
One thing I have asked of the Lord: this will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. Ps. 83, 5. Blessed are thy who dwell in Thy house, O Lord; thy shall praise Thee for ever and ever.
Alleluia, alleluia. Isaias 45, 15. Truly Thou art a hidden King, the God of Israel, the Saviour. Alleluia.
Gospel • Luke 2, 42-52
Continuation of the Holy Gospel According to St. Luke.
[The birth of Christ. His presentation in the temple. Simeon's prophecy. Christ at twelve years of age, is found amongst the doctors.]
And when he was twelve years old, they going up into Jerusalem, according to the custom of the feast, And having fulfilled the days, when they returned, the child Jesus remained in Jerusalem; and his parents knew it not. And thinking that he was in the company, they came a day' s journey, and sought him among their kinsfolks and acquaintance. And not finding him, they returned into Jerusalem, seeking him.
And it came to pass, that, after three days, they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his wisdom and his answers. And seeing him, they wondered. And his mother said to him: Son, why hast thou done so to us? behold thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. And he said to them: How is it that you sought me? did you not know, that I must be about my father' s business? And they understood not the word that he spoke unto them.
And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them. And his mother kept all these words in her heart. And Jesus advanced in wisdom, and age, and grace with God and men. also.
Offertory • Luke, 2, 22
The parents of Jesus carried Him to the temple, to present Him to the Lord.
To appease Thee, O Lord, we offer the Victim of Salvation, humbly beseeching Thee that, through the prayers of the Virgin Mother of God and St. Joseph, Thou wouldst establish our households in Thy peace and favor. Through the same.
Communion • Luke 2, 51
Jesus went down with them. And came to Nazareth and was subject to them.
Do thou, O Lord, bring us whom Thou hast refreshed with heavenly mysteries to imitate the example of Thy holy Family, that at the hour of our death, with the Virgin Mother and blessed Joseph at hand, we may be receiving by Thee into our everlasting home. Who livest.