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Monday, July 29, 2019


FEAST OF SAINT MARTHA


Tobit, Chapter 5, Verse 21
Tobit reassured her: “Do not worry! Our son will leave in good health and come back to us in good health. Your own eyes will see the day when he returns to you safe and sound. So, do not worry; do not fear for them, my sister.

It is natural to fear something you cannot control. Christ could not be controlled by the men in charge of the Temple system; so, they feared Him and they feared the crowd that followed Him. Christ’s message was good news to the crowd who were but pawns in the Jewish Temple system of wealth and power. We in times of trouble should be like Tobit and seek to walk all the days of our lives in paths of truth and righteousness. It was Tobit who defied those in power to do an act of mercy by burying the dead. While his neighbors mocked him and saying to one another: He is still not afraid! Once before he was hunted down for execution because of this very thing; yet now that he has scarcely escaped, here he is again burying the dead!” (Tobit 2:8) Love makes sacrifices. He (Christ) laid down His life for us. We should also lay down our life for our brothers. (1 John 3:16)

Tobit[1]
  1. On the first night out, Tobias and Raphael/Azariah camped by the Tigris River.
  2. When Tobias went to bathe, a fish jumped out of the water and tried to swallow his foot.  Scholars see much symbolism in this event.  Typically, water represents chaos; then it’s an attempt to disrupt their trip.  “Feet” sometimes has sexual connotations; then it’s an attack on his manhood.
  3. Azariah told him to grab the fish.
  4. He hauled it out on the shore, and Azariah told him to cut out the heart, liver, and gall bladder.  What he couldn’t eat, he salted and took with them.  Since he ate it, it could not have been an unclean fish. (Now, as an angel, Azariah never ate anything, which he will point out later in the story.  Tobias, however, didn’t catch on to any of this.)
  5. Along the way, the angel told Tobias what to do with those fish parts.
Most of us by the grace of God are never confronted with such terrors as Tobit. Yet, we too in our quiet lives can lay down ourselves in service to our brothers.

John McCain in his book Character is Destiny[2] highlights the life of John Wooden who in his own quiet way as a Basketball coach made a huge difference in countless lives of young men growing up teaching them the power of COOPERATION. Coach Wooden was a modest man who inspired young men under his tutelage, leading by example; teaching them wisdom and decency to become both winners and good men.

McCain states about Wooden:

He cared about his players, and paid strict attention to teaching them the small and big things that would help them become the best basketball players they could be, and, most important, the best men they could be. He would bench a player for using profanity or for criticizing a teammate or for treating an opponent disrespectfully. He expected his players to dress appropriately, be courteous to everyone, acknowledge their other teammates when they scored, and to refrain from showing excessive emotions on the court. He taught them dignity, based, as dignity is, on self-respect and respect for others. And he taught them not only the usefulness of teamwork, five men all playing their assigned roles, but the virtue of cooperation, and the sense of satisfaction it provided to an individual.

Coach Wooden[3] taught that success is, “peace of mind that is the direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.” Coach Wooden developed a Pyramid of Success which he taught his players which not only help them win at the game of basketball but also in the game of life.



The Masculine Spirit[4]


In America we are gradually seeing the wholesale destruction of the masculine spirit. We are so confused many of us don’t know which bathroom to use. Is this just another attempt by Satan to kill the body as God created it? Men and women need to value themselves and value the beneficial characteristics of masculinity and to reject the false images of being male. Men and women were created to be different. They were created to be in partnership, neither one dominating the other, each using their God-given gifts of gender for the benefit of the other and for the redemption of the world. The spirit of man is action oriented yet at times it is imperative that men to be fully men of God; must borrow from the female spirit the art of reflection. We must become aware of the wounds from our childhood that drive us toward destruction and trap us in unhealthy behavior as adults. We must reflect and learn from our mistakes, so we are not doomed to repeat them. As we reflect, we can see most men fall into one of four Archetypes—King, Warrior, Magician, and Lover. Archetypes are blueprints, primordial images that affect how we think, feel, and react to life’s situations. A balanced man can be all four simultaneously directing his energy to the problem at hand, but problems come when a man gets stuck and becomes trapped in one archetype. Each type has positive and negative characteristics of which a balanced man can tap to be a hero or a villain.

Feast of St. Martha[5]


According to legend, St Martha left Judea after Jesus' death, around AD 48, and went to Provence with her sister Mary (Mary Magdalene) and her brother Lazarus. With them, Martha first settled in Avignon (now in France). The Golden Legend, compiled in the 13th century, records the Provençal tradition:
Saint Martha, hostess of our Lord Jesus Christ, was born of royal kindred. Her father was named Syro and her mother Encharia. The father of her was duke of Syria and places maritime, and Martha with her sister possessed by the heritage of their mother three places, that was, the castle Magdalen, and Bethany and a part of Jerusalem. It is nowhere read that Martha had ever any husband or fellowship of man, but she as a noble hostess ministered and served our Lord, and would also that her sister should serve him and help her, for she thought that all the world was not sufficient to serve such a guest.

After the ascension of our Lord, when the disciples were departed, she with her brother Lazarus and her sister Mary, also Saint Maximum which baptized them, and to whom they were committed of the Holy Ghost, and many others, were put into a ship without sail, oars, or rudder, which by the conduct of our Lord they came all to Marseilles, and after came to the territory of Aix in Provence, and there converted the people to the faith. Martha was courteous and gracious to the sight of the people.


The Golden Legend also records the grand lifestyle imagined for Martha and her siblings in its entry on Mary Magdalene:

Mary Magdalene had her surname of Magdalo, a castle, and was born of right noble lineage and parents, which were descended of the lineage of kings. And her father was named Cyrus, and her mother Eucharis. She with her brother Lazarus, and her sister Martha, possessed the castle of Magdalo, which is two miles from Nazareth, and Bethany, the castle, which is nigh to Jerusalem, and also a great part of Jerusalem, which, all these things they departed among them. In such wise that Mary had the castle Magdalo, whereof she had her name Magdalene. And Lazarus had the part of the city of Jerusalem, and Martha had to her part Bethany. And when Mary gave herself to all delights of the body, and Lazarus extended all to knighthood, Martha, who was wise, governed nobly her brother's part and also her sister's, and also her own, and administered to knights, and her servants, and to poor men, such necessities as they needed. Nevertheless, after the ascension of our Lord, they sold all these things.


Love is a verb, a doing, sharing, acting, and living part of more than just speech.[6]

Today make some Lasagna to share with those you love.


National Lasagna Day[7]

National Lasagna Day is dedicated to appreciating lasagna.  The true origins of when and how National Lasagna Day came to be are unclear.  However, Google reports of National Lasagna Day began to appear in the 21st century.   Lasagna is a flat-shaped pasta that is layered with sauce and various ingredients, the most popular including beef, spinach, cheese or seafood.  Lasagna is believed to have originated in Naples, Italy.  The first lasagna recipe appears in The Liber de Coquina (The book of cooking/cookery), which is one of the oldest medieval cookbooks. Some have suggested that lasagna comes from the Greek word laganon, which stands for a flat sheet of pasta dough.  Others however suggest that lasagna comes from a 14th-century British recipe called Loseyn, which included layering ingredients between pasta sheets. National Lasagna Day is observed on July 29th of every year.
National Lasagna Day Facts & Quotes

·         As per the USDA, 100g of lasagna contains 135 calories, 4.9g of fat and 15g of carbohydrate.
·         Lasagna is the favorite food of Garfield, a comic strip cat.
·         Lasagna… nature's perfect food! – Garfield

National Lasagna Day Top Events and Things to Do

·         Enjoy lasagna specials on National Lasagna Day at your favorite eatery.  Many restaurants offer free lasagna, discounts and Lasagna special to celebrate the day.
·         Try a healthier alternative to the traditional lasagna.  Lasagna can be vegan, gluten-free, and made without dairy products.  Here are some vegan lasagna options:
1) Vegan lasagna with tofu ricotta and butternut squash
2) Mexican lasagna with layers of refried beans, avocado, guacamole and fresh veggies
3) Zucchini and tomato lasagna with a cashew and herb cheese
4) Mushroom, pesto, spinach and tofu cheese lasagna
5) Eggplant, summer squash, zucchini, mushroom, tomato and basil lasagna with tofu ricotta
·         Cook lasagna in the slow cooker, rather than a conventional oven.  As with baked lasagna, layer noodles, cheese and toppings in the slow cooker and let it cook slowly.  Slow cooker meals are great for a busy family that still likes to eat a nutritious meal at the end of a long day.
·         Cook your lasagna in a dishwasher.  According to MythBusters, the popular television show on the Discovery network, this is definitely feasible.
·         Attend a cooking vacation in Italy where you week-long cooking class at Taste of Italy cooking school in Tuscany, Italy where they teach students how to make lasagna the traditional, Italian way.

Novena in Honor of Saint John Marie Vianney[8]

True Love of Neighbor


Saint John Marie Baptist Vianney because of your love of God you showed great charity towards your neighbor. You could not preach on the Love of God without burning tears of love. During your last years, it seemed as though you could not talk about anything else or live for anything else. Thus, you sacrificed yourself to your neighbor by consoling, absolving and sanctifying them to the limits of your strength. Your charity inspires me to greater love of God, a love which is shown more by acts then by words. Help me to love my neighbor generously as Christ loves them. Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).


Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.

Daily Devotions
·         Drops of Christ’s Blood
·         90 Days for our Nation, Total Consecration-Day 20
·         Novena to the Holy face Day 6
·         Ask for the Prayers and assistance of the Angels. Today pray in reverse order starting with your guardian angel, archangels, virtues, powers, pricipalities, dominations, thrones...
·         Martha is the patron of cooks; tonight make Ratatouille and watch the movie with those you love.




[1]http://www.biblewise.com/bible_study/characters/tobit-and-tobias.php
[2] McCain, John; Salter, Mark (2005-10-25). Character Is Destiny.
[4] Max Olivia, The Masculine Spirit, 1997.
[6] Simple Wisdom Calendar, Publications International, Ltd.
[8]http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/prayers/view.cfm?id=1129

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