Day By Day


JOURNAL POSTINGS Saturday 22 July 2017, S Mary Magdalen, Feast. It was said of S Mary Magdalen that she, together with her brother Lazarus and sister Martha, were placed, during a wave of Christian persecution after the execution of S James of Jerusalem, in a boat without sail or rudder. They were sent off and left to make land wherever they could. They landed at Marseilles in Provence, and preached the Gospel there. S Mary Magdalen withdrew to a cave in the mountains and there lived a life of prayer and penance, and when she died, she was buried in what is now the Basilica of S Maximin. The presence of the three 'Holy Friends of Jesus' in Provence is recognised as part of the ancient sacred history of France and they are still venerated today as having much to say to our contemporary age. May we too remain 'Friends of Jesus' and may God bless you this day.

Friday 21 July 2017, Feria in Ordinary Time. In today's Old Testament reading we have the description of the Lamb, slain and made ready for the Paschal Meal before the Exodus. The mind turns immediately to the apparition at Knock in 1879, with the Lamb shown upon the altar, as described in the book of the Apocalypse: 'And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders, I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain … and he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne. And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb … Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, "Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honour and glory and blessing!"' May the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us all, and lead us to heaven. God bless you.

Thursday 20 July 2017, Feria in Ordinary Time. We don't often see jays in our garden, but the other afternoon no fewer than three appeared! One was on the ground (this one), and two others were in the trees above, keeping guard. We give thanks for the rich variety of God's creation, even in the city, and pray that it will be safeguarded and protected. God bless you.

Wednesday 19 July 2017, Feria in Ordinary Time. Today we have the story of Moses and the Burning Bush at Mass: 'And Moses said, "I will turn aside and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt." Then God reveals His Most Holy Name to him: 'I AM who I AM', and His almighty purpose of redemption. 'I have seen … I have heard … I know … I have come down to deliver'. We may rest assured that God, the Beloved of our heart, has heard, and seen; He knows, and comes down to deliver us in all our need. God bless you and may you know the Truth of His words in your life today.

Tuesday 18 July 2017, Feria in Ordinary Time. In today's Old Testament Mass reading, water appears twice, at the beginning and end of the passage, as if to frame it. The first occurrence is when the baby Moses is drawn out of the water by the daughter of Pharaoh; the second is when Moses, who has killed an Egyptian and is on the run, sits down by a well. The first may remind us of our baptism, when we are indeed drawn out of the water, to have a new identity as a child of God. The second recalls the Samaritan woman in John's Gospel who comes upon Jesus sitting by a well, tired and wearied from His journey. He has not sinned, but she has, and so begins her new life and identity, stemming from this encounter with Truth. May you too draw water from the wells of salvation this day, and may God bless you.

Monday 17 July 2017, Feria in Ordinary Time. Today in the Archdiocese of Birmingham is commemorated the ninth century Mercian prince, St Kenelm, venerated since mediaeval times as a martyr. Also on this day were martyred Blessed John Sugar and Blessed Robert Grissold, executed at Warwick on 16 July 1604. Bl John Sugar was a convert from Anglicanism who had studied at Douai, and was ordained a priest in 1601. His ministry was in Warwickshire, Staffordshire and Worcestershire, where he travelled on foot. Blessed Robert Grissold was the son of a weaver and had a special reverence for Catholic priests. He and Fr John Sugar were arrested on 8 July 1603 after a raid on the Grissold house. Both were offered their freedom if they would conform. They did not, and so they died. As we give thanks for their witness, let us ask for their prayers and for our own strengthening in the Faith. God bless you.

16 July 2017, Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. 'For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and return not thither but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and prosper in the thing for which I sent it'. These words form our Old Testament Mass reading today. The reference to the Word that does not return empty recalls the story of the foot washing in John's Gospel, where it says: 'Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going to God, rose from supper, laid aside his garments, and girded himself with a towel'. The Eternal Word in returning to His Father carries redemption in His hand, poured out freely for all of us. May God bless you this Sunday, and may you know the power of His redemption.


©SBVM 2013