Today is “Sun”day. I love the blue shies, and that bright object in the sky, that people have told me is the sun. It’s been sooooo long since I have seen it, and I am told it will be disappearing again tomorrow.
Today’s reflection is from today’s Mass reading, and is about an Old Testament prophesy of the coming Messiah: Jesus. A great reflection. Please add my reflection page to your favorites list. I would appreciate it, and maybe we both can learn.
Quote or Joke of the Day:
A priest, a rabbi, and a minister walk into a bar. The bartender says, “What is this, some kind of joke?”
For a child is born to us, a son is given us; upon his shoulder dominion rests. They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace. (NAB Is 9:5)
Let me just some this verse up: it is about the birth and reign of Jesus Christ! Religious scholars call this a “typology,” which is the study of religious texts for the purpose of identifying episodes in them, that appear to prophesy later events. Typologies prove that the Old Testament wasn’t thrown out with Jesus’ birth. After all, Jesus as a Jew, and lived by what was told in the Old Testament. The New Testament does not give up the old; but changes the old covenant, in exchange for a new covenant of redemption through Christ’s suffering and death on the cross.
The child in this verse refers to the Old Testament Immanuel; a child. Other references (typologies) can be found in Isaiah 7:14 (about his birth to a virgin), Isaiah 8:8 (about being from Judah), and Isaiah 11:1 (About a person with the knowledge of the Lord, that will come from the stump of Jesse).
Other parts of this verse have very distinctive meanings. “Upon his shoulder dominion rests” is about Christ’s authority. “Wonder-Counselor” means that Christ will be known for his wisdom and prudence. “God-Hero” describes Christ as a warrior and a defender of his people, like God himself. “Father-Forever” refers to Christ being always devoted to his people. Finally, “Prince of Peace” talks about his reign being characterized by peace.
Another way of putting this verse in today’s vernacular: Christ will be the strong, but sensitive type. Others that I know with the same qualities of being authoritative, wise, prudent, defender, devoted, and peaceful: The Venerable Pope John Paul II, Saint Francis, Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, me, Robert Redford, Archbishop Timothy Nolan, Archbishop Robert Carlson, and Servant of God Archbishop Fulton Sheen.
“Lord, you know all that was, and all that will be. Please stay with me while I stumble along my path to your redemptive love for me. I love you with my mind, heart and soul. Please live in me and guide me in the Christian way to live my life. Amen”
Pax et Bonum
Dan Halley, SFO
Franciscan Saint of the Day: St. John Bosco 1815-1888
St. John Bosco, one of the greatest saints of modern times, was born in a Piedmontese village in 1815. When he was 2 years old, he lost his father, a humble peasant farmer; and he was brought up by his saintly Tertiary mother, Margaret. It was no doubt due to her example and influence that John too joined the Third Order of St. Francis.
Even as a youngster, John recognized that it was his vocation in life to help poor boys; and he began to teach catechism to the boys of his own village and bring them to church. Acrobatic stunts and conjuring tricks were the means he used to get them together.
At 16 he entered the seminary at Chieri. He was so poor at the time, that the mayor contributed a hat, the parish priest a cloak, one parishioner a cassock, and another a pair of shoes. After he was ordained a deacon he passed on to the seminary in Turin; and there, with the approbation of his superiors, he began to gather together on Sundays poor apprentices and waifs of the city.
Not long after his ordination to the priesthood in June, 1841, he established what he called a Festive Oratory, a kind of Sunday school and recreation center for boys, in Turin. His mother came to be his housekeeper and mother of the Oratory. Two more Oratories in the same city followed. When Father John Bosco’s mother died in 1856, the Oratories housed 150 resident boys; and there were four Latin classes and four workshops, one of them a printing press. Ten young priests assisted Father John in his work. Father John was also much in demand as a preacher; and he spent half of his nights in writing popular books in order to provide good reading.
Father John’s confessor and spiritual director was the saintly Tertiary priest Joseph Cafasso; and Father John too gained the reputation of being a saint. Miracles, mostly of healing, were attributed to him. By his kindness and sympathy and his marvelous power of reading the thoughts of his boys, he exercised a profound influence upon his charges. He was able to rule them with apparent indulgence and absence of punishment, something the educationists of the day could not understand.
In 1854 Father John founded the religious order of Salesians, so called in honor of St. Francis de Sales. Its members devote themselves to the education of poor boys. The new society grew rapidly. Father John lived to see 38 houses established in the Old World and 26 in the New World. Today it is one of the largest orders of men in the Church.
Father John also founded a sisterhood called Daughters of St. Mary Auxiliatrix; and he organized many outside helpers into the Salesian Co-operators, who are pledged to assist in some way the educational labors of the Salesians. In 1930 they totalled 800,000.
Father John’s last great work was the building of Sacred Heart Church in Rome, a task which was entrusted to him by Pope Pius IX after it has seemed to be a hopeless project. The holy priest, who was everywhere acclaimed as a saint and wonderworker, gathered funds for the church in Italy and France; and somehow he succeeded where others had failed. But in doing so he wore himself out. and on January 31, 1888, he was called to his reward. Forty thousand persons came to pay their respects as his body lay in state in the church at Turin; and his funeral resembled a triumphal procession.
St. John was canonized in 1934.
Book of Saints, ed. by Marion Habig, ofm.,
© 1959 Franciscan Herald Press
(From http://www.franciscan-sfo.org website)
Secular Franciscan Order Motto:
Pax et Bonum
(Peace and All Good)