Oct 23, 2021, 3:13:29 AMOct 23
Take pride in the title of Christian
If with faith and religious feeling you take pride in the title of
Christian, value the grace of this reconciliation at its true worth.
Once you were cast off, driven from paradise, dying in weary exile.
Reduced to dust and ashes, you have no further hope of life; but now
through the incarnation of the Word you have the power to return from
afar to your Creator, to recognize your Father, to be freed from
slavery, and raised from the status of a stranger to that of a child.
You were born with a nature liable to decay, but now you can be reborn
through the Spirit of God and obtain by grace what you lacked by
nature. You need have no doubt that if you keep the terms of your
engagement in the heavenly army, you will receive the victor's crown
in the triumphant camp of the eternal King. You will rise again with
the just to enter into the fellowship of the kingdom of heaven.
--Excerpt from sermon of St. Leo the Great
October 23rd - St. Theodoret, Martyr
About the year 361, a man by the name of Julian, was Emperor at that
time. The Emperor also had a nephew by the name of Julian, who was
made Count (Governor) of the East. The terrible thing about these two
men is that they were Apostates. An Apostate is a person who was a
Catholic at one time but has left the Catholic Church.
The Count was told that there was a great amount of gold and silver in
the main Catholic Church in Antioch. He was eager to steal all the
gold and silver from the Church, which was a terrible sin! He closed
all the Catholic Churches at Antioch and ordered all the priests and
clergy to leave the city.
St. Theodoret was a very good and holy priest, who had destroyed many
false idols in the past, built many churches and shrines over the
relics of martyrs. He refused to obey the sinful ideas of the Count!
The holy priest gathered the Christians together and continued to have
the Mass and other prayers said publicly.
Count Julian was terribly angry about this and ordered St. Theodoret
to be brought before him, with his hands tied. The Count ordered him
to be beaten and tortured. The holy priest’s arms and legs were tied
to pulleys and stretched until his body was about eight feet long!
When St. Theodoret was tormented and bleeding, Count Julian sneered,
“I see that you are not suffering enough!”
The saint replied, “God is with me and I do not feel any pain!”
The wicked Count then had fire applied to the body of the martyr. As
his skin was burning, the saint prayed aloud, “ Dear Lord, I beg of
Thee to glorify my name throughout all ages.” Then God worked a
miracle and caused the tormenters to fall to the ground.
Julian was afraid, but then ordered the men to continue burning this
priest! The tormenters then cried out, “We can not torture this man.
There are four angels clothed in white, standing with Theodoret! Then
the Count in a rage, ordered the tormentors to be thrown in the water
Then St. Theodore cried out, “O wretched man, you know well that on
the Day of Judgment God will send you and the tyrant you serve to
Hell!” The saint was then beheaded and he flew to Heaven! A short
time afterwards, the judge himself was arraigned before the
judgment-seat of God.
Reflection: Take care to reflect upon the four last realities--death,
judgment, resurrection, and eternity in either heaven or hell. Thus
you will live in holy fear, and will learn to love God better. His
justice is part of His goodness and is worthy like Himself of
Read some chapter of a devout book. It is very easy and most
necessary, for just as you speak to God when at prayer, God speaks to
you when you read.
--St. Vincent de Paul
For I will not trust in my bow: neither shall my sword save me. But
thou hast saved us from them that afflict us: and hast put them to
shame that hate us. In God shall we glory all the day long: and in thy
name we will give praise for ever. (Psalms 43:7-9)
"Heavenly Father, during this time of world crisis, let all souls find
their peace and security in Your Divine Will. Give each soul the
grace to understand that Your Will is Holy Love in the present
"Benevolent Father, illuminate each conscience to see ways that
he is not living in Your Will. Grant the world the grace to change
and the time in which to do it. Amen."
May the Holy Cross be to you light and health, the benediction
and the Will of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.