THIS princess was daughter of Theodoric, a powerful Saxon count. Her parents placed her very young in the monastery of Erford, of which her grandmother Maud was then abbess. Our Saint remained in that house, an accomplished model of all virtues, till her parents married her to Henry, son of Otho, Duke of Saxony, in 913, who was afterwards chosen king of Germany. He was s pious and victorious prince, and very tender of his subjects. Whilst by his arms he checked the insolence of the Hungarians and Danes, and enlarged his dominions by adding to them Bavaria, Maud gained domestic victories over her spiritual enemies more worthy of a Christian and far greater in the eyes of Heaven. She nourished the precious seeds of devotion and humility in her heart by assiduous prayer and meditation. It was her delight to visit, comfort, and exhort the sick and the afflicted; to serve and instruct the poor, and to afford her charitable succor to prisoners. Her husband, edified by her example, concurred with her in every pious undertaking which she projected. After twenty-three years' marriage God was pleased to call the king to himself, in 936. Maud, during his sickness, went to the church to pour forth her soul in prayer for him at the foot of the altar. As soon as she understood, by the tears and cries of the people, that he had expired, she called for a priest that was fasting to offer the holy sacrifice for his soul. She had three sons: Otho, afterwards emperor; Henry, Duke of Bavaria; and St. Brunn, Archbishop of Cologne. Otho was crowned king of Germany in 937, and emperor at Rome in 962, after his victories over the Bohemians and Lombards. The two oldest sons conspired to strip Maud of her dowry, on the unjust pretence that she had squandered the revenues of the state on the poor. The unnatural princes at length repented of their injustice, and restored to her all that had been taken from her. She then became more liberal in her alms than ever, and founded many churches, with five monasteries. In her last sickness she made her confession to her grandson William, the Archbishop of Mentz, who yet died twelve days before her, on his road home. She again made a public confession before the priests and monks of the place, received a second time the last sacraments, and, lying on a sack-cloth, with ashes on her head, died on the 14th of March in 968.
Reflection. —The beginning of true virtue is most ardently to desire it, and to ask it of God with the utmost assiduity and earnestness. Fervent prayer, holy meditation, and reading pious books, are the principal means by which this virtue is to be constantly improved, and the interior life of the soul to be strengthened.
Lives Of The Saints By Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. Edition www.globalgrey.co.uk
Prayers and Reading for Today’s MASS
Ferial Day in Lent – Tuesday, Second Week of Lent
Introit • Ps. 26, 8, 9
My heart hath said to Thee, I have sought Thy face; Thy face, O Lord, will I seek: turn not away Thy face from me. Ps. 26, 1. The Lord is my light and my salvation: whom shall I fear? Glory be …
Of thy kindness, we beseech Thee, O Lord, to perfect the support of Thy holy observance in us, that what we know by Thy authority should be done, may be fulfilled by Thy operation. Through our Lord.
Epistle • 3 Kings 17, 8-16
Lesson from the Book of Kings.
[Elias shutteth up the heaven from raining. He is fed by ravens, and afterwards by a widow of Sarephta. He raiseth the window's son to life.]
In those days the word of the Lord came to Elias the Thesbite, saying, Arise, and go to Sarephta of the Sidonians, and dwell there: for I have commanded a widow woman there to feed thee. He arose, and went to Sarephta. And when he was come to the gate of the city, he saw the widow woman gathering sticks, and he called her, and said to her: Give me a little water in a vessel, that I may drink.
And when she was going to fetch it he called after her, saying: Bring me also, I beseech thee, a morsel of bread in thy hand. And she answered: As the Lord thy God liveth, I have no bread, but only a handful of meal in a pot, and a little oil in a cruse: behold I am gathering two sticks that I may go in and dress it, for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die. And Elias said to her: Fear not, but go, and do as thou hast said: but first make for me of the same meal a little hearth cake, and bring it to me: and after make for thyself and thy son. For thus saith the Lord the God of Israel: The pot of meal shall not waste, nor the cruse of oil be diminished, until the day wherein the Lord will give rain upon the face of the earth. She went and did according to the word of Elias: and he ate, and she, and her house: and from that day the pot of meal wasted not, and the cruse of oil was not diminished, according to the word of the Lord, which he spoke in the hand of Elias.
Gradual • Ps. 54, 23, 17, 18, 19
Cast thy care upon the Lord, and He shall sustain thee. When I cried to the Lord, He heard my voice from them that draw near to me.
Gospel • Matt. 23, 1-12
Continuation of the Holy Gospel According to St. Matthew.
[Christ admonishes the people to follow the good doctrine, not the bad example of the scribes and Pharisees. He warns his disciples not to imitate their ambition and denounces divers woes against them for their hypocrisy and blindness.]
At that time, Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to his disciples,Saying: The scribes and the Pharisees have sitten on the chair of Moses. All things therefore whatsoever they shall say to you, observe and do: but according to their works do ye not; for they say, and do not. For they bind heavy and insupportable burdens, and lay them on men' s shoulders; but with a finger of their own they will not move them. And all their works they do for to be seen of men. For they make their phylacteries broad, and enlarge their fringes.
And they love the first places at feasts, and the first chairs in the synagogues, And salutations in the market place, and to be called by men, Rabbi. But be not you called Rabbi. For one is your master; and all you are brethren. And call none your father upon earth; for one is your father, who is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters; for one is your master, Christ. He that is the greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be humbled: and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
Offertory • Ps. 50, 3
Have mercy on me, O Lord, according to Thy great mercy: O Lord, blot out my iniquity.
Graciously work Thy sanctification in us, O Lord, by these mysteries, both to purge us of earthly wickedness and to bring us to heavenly gifts. Through our Lord.
Communion • Ps. 9, 2, 3
I will relate all Thy wonders: I will be glad and rejoice in Thee: I will sing praise to Thy name, O Thou Most High.