Vol 13 Issue 22 ~ Editor: Rev. Fr. Courtney Edward Krier
May 30, 2020 ~ Vigil of Pentecost
1. What is the Holy Eucharist
2. Pentecost Sunday
3. Mary, Queen
4. Family and Marriage
5. Articles and notices
This Sunday the Church will be celebrating Pentecost. The two greatest feasts celebrated in the Old Testament were the Passover and Pentecost (cf. Lev. 23) and, in the fulfillment of the Old Testament types the New Testament also places these two feasts as the two greatest feasts: The Paschal Feast and, fifty days (pentecost) later, Pentecost. As the Paschal Feast celebrates the Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ after His sacrifice as the Lamb of God, so Pentecost celebrates the giving of God’s Spirit just as Moses was given the Ten Commandments: One the Law of Love written in the heart the other the Law of Justice written in stone; one gives life the other death.
Pentecost, in the Old Testament was a celebration of the beginning of the harvest, and it is also a celebration for the Church in the New Testament of the harvest of souls: The harvest indeed is great, but the labourers are few. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he send labourers into his harvest. (Luke 10:2) Therefore the Church sees this feast as the birth of the Church that goes out into the world to bring it to Christ.
With the coming of the Holy Ghost on Pentecost, we receive the sevenfold gifts of God: Wisdom, understanding, knowledge, counsel, fortitude, piety and fear of the Lord. (Cf. Isaias 11:2-3) We know that the Spirit of God is working in us when we see the Fruits of the Spirit: Charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity, goodness, longanimity, mildness, faith, modesty, continency, chastity. (Cf. Gal. 5:22-23)
Our Pentecost was when we received the Sacrament of Confirmation. If we have not received this Sacrament (which we have an obligation under pain of sin to receive) let us do everything possible to receive it as quickly as possible so we do not lack the operation of the Gifts of the Holy Ghost in our souls.
As always, enjoy the readings provided for your benefit.—The Editor
WHAT IS THE HOLY EUCHARIST
By Rev. Courtney Edward Krier
The Institution of the Holy Eucharist
As said above, as the Passover meal was over and it was forbidden to eat anything after the Passover, including according to the Mishnah (Pesachim 10:8) the prohibition of the eating of the Afikoman: אין מפטירין אחר הפסח אפיקומן, the fulfilment is expressed by Jesus Christ taking the Afikoman to change into His Body that was to be the new Passover sacrifice: Purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new paste, as you are unleavened. For Christ our pasch is sacrificed. (1 Cor. 5:7)
Therefore one reads:
Matthew: Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke: and gave to his disciples, and said: Take ye, and eat. This is my body. (Matt. 26:26)
Mark: Jesus took bread; and blessing, broke, and gave to them, and said: Take ye. This is my body. (Mark 14:22)
Luke: And taking bread, he gave thanks, and brake; and gave to them, saying: This is my body, which is given for you. (Luke 22:19)
John: If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever; and the bread that I will give, is my flesh, for the life of the world. (John 6:52)
Paul: took bread. And giving thanks, broke, and said: Take ye, and eat: this is my body, which shall be delivered for you (1 Cor. 11: 23, 24)
The words, took bread (the Douay Rheims translates having taken for Luke, but the Greek is the same—λαβὼν) points to Genesis 2:21: God took a rib from Adam and form from it flesh; and 22:13: Abraham took the ram and offered it for a holocaust instead of his son (cf. Gen. 22:13). It also points to Exodus 12:3: On the tenth day of this month let every man take a lamb by their families and houses.
Here, as mentioned above, the bread is the aphikoman that is hidden and represents the One Who is to Come. It is the middle of the three unleavened breads that was broke in half, with one half eaten and the other half set aside.
Blessing and giving thanks, or thanksgiving is synonymous amongst the Hebrews of the Old Testament. In the Old Testament there is no mention of thanksgiving in the term, eucharist, rather where one does read thanksgiving, it usually is the translation for hymns of praise or a choir giving praise (cf. Nehemias 12:8; Psalms 104, 105, 106). In the hymn of thanksgiving for the Last Supper (Psalm 117), one reads for hymns of praise in the Hebrew, Give thanks in the English. The Septuagint does not use eucharist (ευχαριστία) at all in the Old Testament. It is first encountered in the New Testament with the multiplication of the loaves and fishes:
Matthew: And taking the seven loaves and the fishes, and giving thanks, he brake, and gave to his disciples, and the disciples to the people. (15:36)
Mark: And taking the seven loaves, giving thanks, he broke, and gave to his disciples for to set before them; and they set them before the people. (8:6)
John: And Jesus took the loaves: and when he had given thanks, he distributed to them that were set down. In like manner also of the fishes, as much as they would. (6:11; cf. also 6:23)
The word Eucharist is not used elsewhere except in Luke where the Samaritan gives thanks to Christ (cf. Luke 17:16) and the Pharisee pharisaically giving thanks to God in the temple (cf. Luke 18:11) and Christ says to His Father, before raising Lazarus: Father, I give thee thanks that thou hast heard me. (John 11:41) The Evangelists, therefore, reserve this word first, in giving thanks only to God; secondly, only in conjunction with the Eucharist as both Matthew and Mark are found to only use the word with the multiplication of the loaves and fishes (John joining this with the discourse on Christ offering His Body and Blood for food and drink) and the Institution of the Eucharistic Sacrifice:
Matthew: And taking the chalice, he gave thanks, and gave to them, saying: Drink ye all of this. (26:27)
Mark: And having taken the chalice, giving thanks, he gave it to them. (14:23)
Luke: And having taken the chalice, he gave thanks . . . And taking bread, he gave thanks, and brake; and gave to them (22:17, 19)
Paul: And giving thanks, broke, and said: Take ye, and eat: this is my body, which shall be delivered for you. (1 Cor. 11:24)
It should be noted that thanks, found in in Luke, chapter six, is from the Greek charis (cf. Luke 6:32, 33 and 34), that is, without the prefix eu (good), and is translated as thanks as opposed to giving thanks:
And as you would that men should do to you, do you also to them in like manner. And if you love them that love you, what thanks are to you? for sinners also love those that love them. And if you do good to them who do good to you, what thanks are to you? for sinners also do this. And if you lend to them of whom you hope to receive, what thanks are to you? for sinners also lend to sinners, for to receive as much. (Luke 6:31-34)
In Matthew, the deliberate use of blessed (26:26), the Greek, eulogia (a good word or benediction), and gave thanks (26:27), the Greek eucharistia (a good giving or thanksgiving), may be indicative of the Scriptural terminology expressing the conclusion of the Old Covenant and the sealing the New Covenant through the Blood of Christ. This is stated in as much as was said previously, eucharistia is not found in the Old Testament Greek, and the Hebrew expresses a hymn of praise where give thanks is the translation. Therefore, there is a change of giving praise to God to giving thanks to God. It may be understood in as much as one could only hope for salvation, whereas, salvation received, one could give thanks—because Christ gives His body and blood in sacrifice, which obtained salvation for mankind.
Next, Christ gave the Apostles alone the consecrated Bread: and gave to them (the Apostles). Here it is understood that He was both giving them the power to change the bread into His Body and that they alone who partook in the sacramental priesthood of Christ could give the Sacrament of the Body and Blood to the faithful, for no other was allowed to touch His Body. One can observe this after His resurrection. When Mary Magdalene encountered Christ, Christ said: Do not touch me. Nor does one read in the account the others touching Him. (John 20:17) But when the Apostles encountered Christ, He said: Put your fingers . . . (John 20:27; cf. Matt. 28:9 and Luke 24:39). That Matthew and Mark record the command, Take ye,further emphasize that the Holy Eucharist is delivered to their ministry. And eat connects the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, when, as read in chapter six of John’s Gospel, Christ says: If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever; and the bread that I will give, is my flesh, for the life of the world. (v. 52) Christ, therefore, shows that what He had said then was now accomplished: This is my body.
And he [God] said: Behold Adam is become as one of us, knowing good and evil: now, therefore, lest perhaps he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever. (Gen. 3:22) As seen in John’s sixth chapter, Christ was restoring what was lost through the sin of Adam, eternal life—given to those who ate from the tree of life—which would be His Body, which Peter announces, was hanging . . . upon a tree. (Acts 5:30 and 10:39) as Luke adds: which is given for you. (Luke 22:19; cf. I Cor. 11:24) Christ had already proclaimed: And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all things to myself. (John 12:32)
In fulfilling His promise delivered after the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, Christ proceeds to offer His Blood.
Matthew: And taking the chalice, he gave thanks, and gave to them, saying: Drink ye all of this. For this is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto remission of sins. (26:27-28)
Mark: And having taken the chalice, giving thanks, he gave it to them. And they all drank of it. And he said to them: This is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many. (14:23-24)
Luke: In like manner the chalice also, after he had supped, saying: This is the chalice, the new testament in my blood, which shall be shed for you. (22:20)
Paul: In like manner also the chalice, after he had supped, saying: This chalice is the new testament in my blood. . . (1 Cor. 11:25)
I will take the chalice of salvation; and I will call upon the name of the Lord. (Psalms 115:13) Jesus Christ, in instituting the Holy Eucharist, repeats the words of Moses:
And Moses wrote all the words of the Lord: and rising in the morning he built an altar at the foot of the mount, and twelve titles according to the twelve tribes of Israel. And he sent young men of the children of Israel, and they offered holocausts, and sacrificed pacific victims of calves to the Lord. Then Moses took half of the blood, and put it into bowls: and the rest he poured upon the altar. And taking the book of the covenant, he read it in the hearing of the people: and they said: All things that the Lord hath spoken we will do, we will be obedient. And he took the blood and sprinkled it upon the people, and he said: This is the blood of the covenant which the Lord hath made with you concerning all these words. (Exodus 24:4-8)
Moses sealed a covenant between God and the Israelites, but it was temporary. Paul explains in his Epistle to the Hebrews:
It was answered to Moses, when he was to finish the tabernacle: See (saith he) that thou make all things according to the pattern which was shewn thee on the mount. But now he [Christ] hath obtained a better ministry, by how much also he is a mediator of a better testament, which is established on better promises. For if that former [of Moses] had been faultless, there should not indeed a place have been sought for a second. For finding fault with them, he saith: Behold, the days shall come, saith the Lord: and I will perfect unto the house of Israel, and unto the house of Juda, a new testament: Not according to the testament which I made to their fathers, on the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt: because they continued not in my testament: and I regarded them not, saith the Lord. For this is the testament which I will make to the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord: I will give my laws into their mind, and in their heart will I write them: and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. . . . (Heb. 8:5-10)
And therefore he [Christ] is the mediator of the new testament: that by means of his death, for the redemption of those transgressions, which were under the former testament, they that are called may receive the promise of eternal inheritance. (Heb. 9:15.)
After he had supped:Luke and Paul write later than Matthew and Mark and perhaps are making it clearer the separation between the Passover Sacrifice and the Institution of the Holy Eucharist, the Sacrifice of the New Covenant. This may also be seen in Luke’s account, stating before the Institution:
And he said to them: With desire I have desired to eat this pasch with you, before I suffer. For I say to you, that from this time I will not eat it, till it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. And having taken the chalice, he gave thanks, and said: Take, and divide it among you: For I say to you, that I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, till the kingdom of God come. (22:15-18)
The Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers
M. F. Toal
THE GOSPEL OF THE SUNDAY
John xiv. 23-31
AT THAT TIME: Jesus said to his disciples: If anyone love me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our abode with him. He who does not love me, does not keep my words. And the word that you have heard is not mine, but the Father’s who sent me. These things I have spoken to you while yet dwelling with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your mind whatever I have said to you.
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, or be afraid. You have heard me say to you, ‘I go away and I am coming to you.’ If you loved me, you would indeed rejoice that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I.
And now I have told you before it comes to pass, that when it has come to pass you may believe. I will no longer speak much with you, for the prince of the world is coming, and in me he has nothing. But he comes that the world may know that I love the Father, and that I do as the Father has commanded me.
EXPOSITION FROM THE CATENA AUREA
V. 27. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you.
CHRYSOSTOM: Because they were troubled at hearing of the hatred and strife they would meet when He was gone, He again comforts them by saying: Peace I leave you etc.
AUGUSTINE: He has left us peace in this world, abiding in which we shall overcome the enemy, and that also here below we may love one another. His own peace He will give us in the world to come: when we shall reign without an enemy, and where there can be no discord. But He is Himself our peace: both when we believe He is, and when we shall see Him as He is.
What does He mean when He says, Peace I leave with you, but does not add, my; but where He says, I give unto you, He there says my? Are we to understand that my is implied even where it is not said; or is there perhaps something hidden here? His peace, He wishes us to understand, is that which He has Himself That peace which He has left us in this world, must be called ours rather than his: since He has nothing within Himself to combat, being wholly without sin, while we now possess but that peace in which we yet must say: Forgive us our trespasses. In like manner have we peace amongst ourselves; for we trust each other that we do love one another. But neither is this a perfect peace: for we do not see into the thoughts of each other’s heart. I am aware just the same that these words of the Lord can be taken as a simple repetition of the same sentence.
That the Lord adds: Not as the world giveth, do I give unto you, what else does He imply but, not as men give who love the world? They give themselves peace: that they may enjoy the world untroubled. And even when they leave the just in peace, by not persecuting them, even this cannot be called true peace: for there is no true harmony, because their hearts are divided.
CHRYSOSTOM: Outward peace can also be an evil, and of no profit to those who enjoy it. AUGUSTINE, Serm. 59: Peace is serenity of mind, tranquillity of soul, simplicity of heart, the bond of love, the company of charity. No man can enter into the inheritance of the Lord who refuses to observe the covenant of peace; and neither can he live in peace with Christ who of his own will lives in conflict with a Christian. Then follows: Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid.
CHRYSOSTOM: As He had said, Peace I leave you, the speech of one who is departing, and as this could cause them sorrow, He then says: Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid; since they suffered one emotion through loving Him, the other because of fear.
V. 28. You have heard that I said to you I go away, and I come unto you.
AUGUSTINE, Tr. 78 in John: Their hearts could be troubled and afraid because He was going from them, though He was to come to them again, for fear that in the absence of the Shepherd the wolf might then attack the flock. So there follows: You have heard etc.
He was going from them as man, and remaining with them as God. Why then should their hearts be troubled or afraid when He was going only from before their eyes, but not from their heart? To make them understand that it was as man that He said, I go away, and I come unto you, He goes on to say: If you loved me you would indeed be glad, because I go to the Father; for the Father is greater than I.
In that therefore wherein the Son is not equal to the Father, through this it is He goes to the Father: from Whom He will come again, to judge the living and the dead. In that wherein He is equal to the Father, at no time does He leave the Father, but is everywhere wholly One with Him in the Undivided Trinity, which no place confines. He then, the Son of God, equal to the Father in the Form of God (because He emptied Himself, not losing the Form of God, but taking the form of a servant), is greater even than Himself; for greater is the Form of God, which was not forfeited, than the form of a servant, which was assumed by Him. It is in this form of a servant, therefore, that the Son of God is less than the Holy Spirit, as well as less than the Father. In this form the Child Jesus was less even than His parents, when as a Child He was subject to them, as it is written.
Let us then acknowledge the twofold substance (nature) of Christ: the divine, namely, in which He is equal to the Father, and the human, than which the Father is greater. But both together are not two, but one Christ: lest God be believed to be a quaternity, not a Trinity. And so He says: If you loved me, you would indeed be glad, because I go to the Father. For human nature should rejoice at being taken up to heaven, by the Only-Begotten, and made immortal there: that what was of earth should become sublime, and that perishable dust should sit at the right hand of God. Who that loves Christ should not rejoice at this, seeing his own nature now immortal, and that he too has the hope of becoming the same, in Christ?
HILARY, On the Trinity, 9: Or, if the Father is greater than Me by virtue of giving, is the Son lesser through confessing the gift? Greater is the one giving, but He is not lesser to Whom is given Oneness with the Giver. CHRYSOSTOM: The Apostles did not yet know what this resurrection was which He had foretold, when He said: I go away, and I come unto you, nor what they were to think of it. The Father, they knew, was mighty. So He says to them: Although you fear for Me, that I cannot defend Myself, and you are not certain that I shall see you again after My Crucifixion, yet, at hearing that I go to the Father you ought to rejoice, since I am going to One Who is greater than Me, and able to scatter all such tribulations. All this He said because of the timidity of the Disciples; so He continues:
V. 29. And now I have told you before it come to pass . . .
AUGUSTINE, Tr. 79: Why does He say this? For if a thing is to be believed, it should be believed before it happens. Is it not the glory of faith that it believes what is not seen? For the one to whom it was said: Because thou hast seen thou hast believed, saw one thing, and believed another. He saw man, but believed Him God. But though belief is used of things seen, as when a man says he believes his own eyes, this is not the faith in which we are formed; but from what we see we are prepared to believe that which we do not see.
The words of our Lord then: That when it shall come to pass, that they shall see Him living, after His death, and ascending to the Father, mean, that when they see Him they will believe He is Christ the Son of God, able to do this, and to foretell He would do it. And they would believe this, not by a new faith, but by an increased one; or by a faith grown faint when He died, but renewed at His Resurrection.
V. 30. I will not now speak many things with you. For the prince of . . .
HILARY: He goes on then to speak of the re-assumption of His glory: I will not now speak. BEDE: He says this because the time was drawing near for His capture, and delivering up to death. For the prince of this world cometh. AUGUSTINE: Who is this but the devil? The devil is not a prince of creatures, but of sinners; as the Apostle explains when he says our warfare was against the rulers of the world (Eph. vi. 12); he further explains what world means when he adds: of this darkness: the world, that is, of evil doers. And in me he hath not anything. For God had come without stain of sin, nor had the Virgin brought forth His Body from a root of sin. And as though asked, why then do You die if you are without sin, of which death is the punishment, He goes on:
V. 31. But that the world may know, that I love the Father . . .
He had been sitting at table with them while He spoke. Let us go, He said: to that place from which He was to be delivered up to death, Who had not deserved death. But he had a commandment from the Father that He should die.
AUGUSTINE, Contra serm. Arianorum, II: That the Son is obedient to the will and to the commandment of the Father does not, no more than among men, show a difference and an inequality of nature as between Father commanding and the Son obeying. And to this is to be added that Christ is not alone God, and in this Equal in Nature with the Father, but also man, in which He is by nature less than the Father.
CHRYSOSTOM: Arise let us go hence. This is the beginning of another discourse. The time and place had made the Disciples fearful; for they were now in the depth of night, and in the midst of the city, and so probably not paying full attention to what He was saying to them, but turning their eyes this way and that, imagining an attack at any moment, especially when they heard Him say: Yet a little while I am with you, and then, the prince of this world cometh. Frightened as they were at these and like words, He brings them to another place, where, thinking themselves safe, they would listen with attention. For now they were to hear great and sublime truths.
Our Lady, Queen of All Saints, and Mother of Noble Love
1. On the afternoon of October 31, 1954, in Rome, the miraculous picture of Mary, Salvation of the Roman people, was carried in procession from its throne in St. Mary Major to the Basilica of St. Peter. There were 480 Marian banners from the best-known places of pilgrimage in the world, as well as 280 Italian banners of Mary, in the vast procession. The international Marian Congress had begun its sessions in Rome just a week before; now, its climax and conclusion was to be the announcement of the new feast of “Our Lady, Queen” and the solemn crowning of her image. Pope Pius XII appointed May 31 as the date of the future feast, and he asked that on this day each year, the consecration of mankind to Mary be renewed. As the Holy Father crowned the picture of Christ, he prayed: “As we now crown Thee on earth, may we be found worthy to be crowned by Thee in heaven with honor and glory.” While placing the diadem of twelve stars on the image of Mary the Pope said: “As we crown thee with our hands, may we, through thee, be found worthy to be crowned by Jesus, thy Son, with honor and glory in heaven.”
2. The Church has for centuries believed in the queenship of Mary, as is evidenced by various prayers and expressions, especially in the recitation of the Rosary and in the Litany of Loreto. In the Rosary we praise her for the glory she received when God crowned her Queen of Heaven. In the Litany we call upon her as Queen of angels, of patriarchs, and prophets, of apostles, martyrs, confessors, virgins, and all saints; as Queen conceived without sin, Queen taken into heaven, and Queen of peace. The Church believes firmly that Mary has a kingdom and royal powers; the faithful have great confidence in her queenly intercession.
For more than a thousand years the Church has been greeting Mary in the Divine Office and in private devotion with the words: “Hail Holy Queen; our life, our sweetness, and our hope.” On her feast days we pray the forty-fourth psalm, that prophetic song honoring the mystical nuptials of Christ, the Royal Bridegroom, with Mary, His Bride: “Joyful the thoughts that well up from my heart, the King’s honor for my theme. . . . Thy throne, O God, endures for ever and ever. . . . At Thy right hand stands the queen, in a vesture of gold. (Listen, my daughter, and consider my words attentively. . . thy beauty, now, is for the King’s delight; he is thy Lord and God, and worship belongs to him.) The women of Tyre, too, will have their presents to bring; all that are rich among the citizens will be courting thy favor. All her splendour is the splendour of a princess, through and through; so bedecked is she with embroidery, and tassels of gold. Maidens will follow in her retinue into the King’s presence, all rejoicing; all triumphant, those companions of hers, as they enter the King’s palace.” Mary is the Bride of the King. She, the new Eve, stands at the right of the second Adam, Christ the King, in her splendor as a sublime, matchless Queen. “Hail, Holy Mother, in thy womb there lay a King who bears o’er earth and heaven endless sway” (Introit of Mass of the Blessed Virgin). It is quite true, then, as Pope Pius XII said, that the feast of Mary, Queen, does not introduce anything new. The Pontiff gives recognition to traditional Catholic belief when he “acknowledges and crowns, before all the world, a truth that can help us to overcome the evils of our day and protect Christians.”
Mary’s dignity and power as Queen flow from her intimate union with Christ, the Redeemer. Fundamentally, all her prerogatives stem from the fact that she answered the angel: “Be it done according to thy word,” and thus became the Mother of the Son of God, the King and Lord to whom “all authority in heaven and on earth has been given” (cf. Matt. 28: 18). She is the Mother of the divine King and therefore shares in His royal dignity in a limited and subordinate way. If Christ is our King because, as the new Adam, He is our Redeemer, then, also, is Mary our Queen, since as the new Eve she was associated in God’s plan with Christ, our Savior, in His redemptive work. She is thus rightly called “Co-Redemptrix” and properly enjoys a certain dominion over the redeemed, granted her by her Son. Christ is King by nature and by His redeeming death; Mary is Queen by grace, through Christ and with Him. By virtue of her intimate association with Him, she possesses a dignity and sublimity above all other creatures; she has gained the power to distribute to us men the treasures that Christ merited, and, by virtue of her unique, maternal right of intercession, to obtain for us grace and aid from God.
3. The power of Mary, the Queen, is a power over the heart of Christ, the King. Out of love for her, He listens to the petitions which she has the duty and right to lay before Him on behalf of the welfare of our souls.
Mary’s power is a power over us men, whom she has taken as her children and whom she desires to guide and mold “until Christ be formed in us” and we gain admittance to the blessed kingdom of her Son. She can influence our wills, so that we shall seek what is good; she can influence our hearts, so that we shall love what God wills for us.
The royal power of Mary is a power and dominion over the universe, but especially over mankind, over each individual, whether he be on the way to God or gone astray. On behalf of all of us God has given her the maternal power to assist us in attaining to eternal salvation; the power to obtain for us pardon, grace, light, and strength.
Mary also has power over the evil spirits and the tyranny of hell, sin, and Satan. Already in Paradise she was pointed out as the one who would crush the serpent’s head.
Mary’s queenly power also extends in a marvelous manner over the affairs of the world, over the laws of nature, over sickness, and over the occurrence of mishaps. Witnesses of this power of Mary are Lourdes, Fatima, Loreto, and the numerous places of pilgrimage with their thousands of votive plaques, crutches, and the like. These are unmistakable proofs of Mary’s intercessory power as Queen: Mary, Queen, Help of Christians, pray for us.
Finally, our Queen exercises a motherly as well as a dominative power over Holy Church, over dioceses, parishes, families, religious orders, and monasteries, as history records. Even Christian states and countries may claim the benefit of her power. She is the “conqueror in all the battles of God,” against the heathen (e.g., the Turks at Lepanto) and against the heresies of all ages.
We appreciate our good fortune in having Mary as our Queen, in being under her royal power and dominion. As her beloved children we may turn to her with complete confidence in time of need, using the words of the hymn: “Gracious Queen, remember, it has never been heard of on earth that a pilgrim appealing to thee has been forsaken.” Pope Pius IX exhorts us, in the Bull concerning the Immaculate Conception: “In every necessity, anxiety, and danger, one must take refuge to her and approach her with confidence. Constituted Queen of heaven and earth, she stands at the right hand of her Son and storms Him with motherly petitions. Whatever request Mary wishes to obtain from Him, she will find a hearing: her prayers are never fruitless.”
Collect: O God, by whose gift we revere the Blessed Virgin Mary as Queen of all saints and Mother of noble love, graciously grant that under her protection we may love Thee in all things, and above all things on earth, and in heaven enjoy glad fellowship with Thy saints. Amen.
Boys and Girls!
REV. THOMAS J. HOSTY, M.A., S.T.B.
A TERRIBLE KISS!
GOOD MORNING, BOYS AND GIRLS!
I have something very disagreeable that I want to talk to you about this morning. When I mention the subject, at first, you may not think it is so disagreeable. In fact, you may even consider it rather exciting, until I explain exactly what I mean. This morning, I am going to speak to you about spies!
Some of you are probably thinking, “What’s wrong with spies? Our country uses them, doesn’t she?” Oh, it’s true, they use big words like “counter-intelligence officer,” or “secret service man,” or “espionage detail,” or the slang term, “cloak and dagger boy,” but they all come down to the same thing, don’t they? A spy is a spy, no matter what fancy or high-sounding or mysterious name you give to him!
What’s the difference between one spy and another?
There’s all the difference in the world, between one spy and another! If a man risks his life for his country, and that man has absolutely no reason to suspect that his country is not doing what is right, we should have the greatest respect and admiration for the courage and the patriotism of that man. And it’s the truth that most of the great secret agents of our government never get enough praise for the good they do. This is not the kind of spy that I am going to tell you about.
I have in mind a man like General Benedict Arnold, whose name will be mentioned with shame, as long as true Americans review the history of their country. General Arnold, as you all know from your study of history, was a prominent soldier, during the Revolutionary War, who “sold out” to the English. But we don’t have to go back one hundred and seventy-five years for an example. We’ve heard of some of the wrong kinds of spies, right here in our own time. Not too long ago, a man named Alger Hiss, a prominent member of our State Department, was convicted in connection with giving away some of our top government secrets to Russia. I’m sure you’re familiar with both that name and that case, because the newspapers devoted so much space to it.
From time to time, the FBI turns up secret communists in our government plants and organizations who are doing their best to betray our country to Russia. Naturally, you and I and all real Americans become very angry at these men. Why? Because they are supposed to be American citizens! The United States goes to a great deal of effort and expense to see that their rights as human beings are always respected and protected. And then what happens? They turn right around and bite the very hand that is feeding them.
But there are worse traitors than the “commies” who are in some of our government jobs. I wonder if any of you boys or girls could give me the name of the person who was undoubtedly the worst spy and traitor of all times?
Yes, that is correct! Judas Iscariot, one of our Lord’s Apostles, was certainly the worst of all spies. He is the only spy that I know of who has a day named after him! The day before Holy Thursday is known among Catholics as “Spy Wednesday,” to commemorate Judas’ betrayal of Christ.
But why was Judas’ betrayal such a terrible thing? Well, let’s figure it out.
Judas was absolutely a “nobody,” when Christ picked him as one of His Apostles; he was just a poor, ordinary fisherman, who could neither read nor write. For three long years he had the privilege of talking, walking, praying, and associating with our blessed Lord. He heard the great sermons which Christ preached; he saw Him give sight to the blind; he witnessed Him making the lame walk. He watched the lepers as they were cleansed of their terrible disease by Christ; he marveled at the thousands who were fed by Christ, with only five loaves of bread and a few fishes; he was thrilled, together with the other Apostles, when the Master raised a dead man to life; and he very likely heard many beautiful words of advice and counsel from our Lord. Christ gave him a special and important job, when He made him the treasurer of the Apostles. He received his first Holy Communion from the hands of our blessed Lord Himself, at the Last Supper. He was ordained a priest by the great High Priest Himself; he, too, was given the tremendous power of changing bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ.
Yet, in spite of all these wonderful gifts from his perfect Friend, Judas plotted with the Jewish priests to betray Christ. And finally, he agreed to put Christ “on the spot,” for just thirty pieces of silver! Terrible as all this sounds, the worst was yet to come. Christ, because He was the Son of God and knew all things, understood that Judas was planning to betray Him. He even knew when and where the attempt was to be made. And so He gave Judas a chance to straighten out the terrible mess into which he had gotten himself. He warned Judas, during the Last Supper, that He knew about his plans. He said publicly, in the presence of all of his Apostles, that one of them was preparing to betray Him. He even gave Judas a spe…
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