IN the reign of Marcian and St. Pulcheria, the Council of Chalcedon, which condemned the Eutychian heresy, was received by St. Euthymius and by a great part of the monks of Palestine. But Theodosius, an ignorant Eutychian monk, and a man of a most tyrannical temper, under the protection of the Empress Eudoxia, widow of Theodosius the Younger, who lived at Jerusalem, perverted many among the monks themselves, and having obliged Juvenal, Bishop of Jerusalem, to withdraw, unjustly possessed himself of that important see, and, in a cruel persecution which he raised, filled Jerusalem with blood; then, at the head of a band of soldiers, he carried desolation over the country. Many, however, had the courage to stand their ground. No one resisted him with, greater zeal and resolution than Severianus, Bishop of Scythopolis, and his recompense was the crown of martyrdom; for the furious soldiers seized his person, dragged him out of the city, and massacred him, in the latter part of the year 452 or in the beginning of the year 453.
Reflection. —With what floods of tears can we sufficiently bewail so grievous a misfortune, and implore the divine mercy in behalf of so many souls! How ought we to be alarmed at the consideration of so many dreadful examples of God's inscrutable judgments, and tremble for ourselves! "Let him who stands beware lest he fall" "Hold fast what thou hast," says the oracle of the Holy Ghost to every one of us, "lest another bear away thy crown."
Lives Of The Saints By Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. Edition www.globalgrey.co.uk
Prayers and Reading for Today’s MASS
Introit • Ps. 44, 23-26
Arise, why sleepest Thou, O Lord? Arise, and cast us not off to the end: why turnest Thou Thy face away, and forgesttest our trouble? Our belly hath cleaved to the earth: arise, O Lord, help us and deliver us. Ps. 43, 2. O God, we have heard with our ears; our fathers have declared to us. Glory be …
O God, Who seest that we put not our trust in any deed of our own, mercifully grant that by the protection of the Teacher of the gentiles we may be defended against all adversities. Through our Lord.
Epistle • 2 Cor. 11, 19-33; 12, 1-9
Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians.
Brethren, you gladly suffer the foolish; whereas yourselves are wise. For you suffer if a man bring you into bondage, if a man devour you, if a man take from you, if a man be lifted up, if a man strike you on the face. I speak according to dishonour, as if we had been weak in this part. Wherein if any man dare (I speak foolishly), I dare also. They are Hebrews: so am I. They are Israelites: so am I. They are the seed of Abraham: so am I. They are the ministers of Christ (I speak as one less wise). I am more; in many more labours, in prisons more frequently, in stripes above measure, in deaths often. Of the Jews five times did I receive forty stripes, save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once I was stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I was in the depth of the sea.
In journeying often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils from my own nation, in perils from the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils from false brethren. In labour and painfulness, in much watchings, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Besides those things which are without: my daily instance, the solicitude for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is scandalized, and I am not on fire? If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things that concern my infirmity. The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed for ever, knoweth that I lie not. At Damascus, the governor of the nation under Aretas the king, guarded the city of the Damascenes, to apprehend me. And through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and so escaped his hands.
If I must glory (it is not expedient indeed), but I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord. I know a man in Christ above fourteen years ago (whether in the body, I know not, or out of the body, I know not; God knoweth), such a one caught up to the third heaven. And I know such a man (whether in the body, or out of the body, I know not: God knoweth), That he was caught up into paradise, and heard secret words, which it is not granted to man to utter. For such an one I will glory; but for myself I will glory nothing, but in my infirmities.
For though I should have a mind to glory, I shall not be foolish; for I will say the truth. But I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth in me, or any thing he heareth from me. And lest the greatness of the revelations should exalt me, there was given me a sting of my flesh, an angel of Satan, to buffet me. For which thing thrice I besought the Lord, that it might depart from me. And he said to me: My grace is sufficient for thee; for power is made perfect in infirmity. Gladly therefore will I glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
Gradual • Ps. 82, 19, 14
Let the gentiles know that God is Thy name: Thou alone art the Most Hight over all the earth. O my God, make them like a wheel, and as stubble before the face of the wind.
Gospel • Luke 8, 4-15
Continuation of the Holy Gospel According to St. Luke.
[The parable of the seed. Christ stills the storm at sea, casts out the legion, heals the issue of blood and raises the daughter of Jairus to life.]
At that time, when a very great multitude was gathered together, and hastened out of the cities unto him, he spoke by a similitude. The sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it.
And other some fell upon a rock: and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it had no moisture. And other some fell among thorns, and the thorns growing up with it, choked it. And other some fell upon good ground; and being sprung up, yielded fruit a hundredfold. Saying these things, he cried out: He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. And his disciples asked him what this parable might be. To whom he said: To you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God; but to the rest in parables, that seeing they may not see, and hearing may not understand.
Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. And they by the way side are they that hear; then the devil cometh, and taketh the word out of their heart, lest believing they should be saved. Now they upon the rock, are they who when they hear, receive the word with joy: and these have no roots; for they believe for a while, and in time of temptation, they fall away. And that which fell among thorns, are they who have heard, and going their way, are choked with the cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and yield no fruit. But that on the good ground, are they who in a good and perfect heart, hearing the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit in patience.
Offertory • Ps. 16, 5, 6, 7
Perfect Thou my goings in Thy paths, that my footsteps be not moved: incline Thine ear, and hear my words: show forth Thy wonderful mercies, Thou Who savest them that trust in Thee, O Lord.
May the sacrifice we offer Thee, O Lord, ever vivify and defend us. Through our Lord.
Communion • Ps. 42, 4
I will go in to the altar of God: to God Who giveth joy to my youth.
Grant, we humbly beseech Thee, almighty God, that those whom Thou refreshest with Thy sacraments may serve Thee worthily by a life well pleasing to Thee. Through our Lord.