NOVENA ST. JOHN VIANNEY
Tobit, Chapter 5, Verse 16
I will even add a bonus to your wages!” The young man replied: “I will go with him. Do not fear. In good health we will leave you, and in good health we will return to you, for the way is safe.”
This young man referred to in this reading is the angel Raphael who says to do not fear. It is interesting to note that Raphael name and function means the medicine of God.
One of the Seven
Raphael in Christian TheologyRaphael was a favorite figure in Christian as well as in Jewish angelology, and early Christian amulets, encolpions, tombstones, and other monuments have been found bearing the names of the angels Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael. A small, gold tablet discovered in the grave of Maria, the wife of the emperor Honorius, bears a similar inscription. The names of the same angels occur on Basilidian gems, and Origen likewise mentions them.
His name occurs in Judæo-Babylonian conjuring texts, and is conspicuous in the liturgy—as in the evening prayer, where he is mentioned together with the three other angels, at whose head stands God, exactly as in the Christian version of Zechariah.
- Tobias went out to look for someone to accompany him and who should he run into but Raphael, the angel!
- When asked if he knew the way to Media, Raphael replied that he often stayed there with Gabael (who just happened to be the guy holding the bag of money) because they were kinsmen. (Though this seems to be an amazing stroke of luck, it, of course, reflects the providence of God.)
- Tobit wanted to meet him and when pressed for a name, Raphael said it was Azariah, which means “Yahweh has helped.”
- Both Tobit and Tobias had no clue as to Azariah’s true identity even though he told Tobit he would soon be healed.
- Tobit wished them a safe journey, saying, “May [God’s] angel accompany you both and protect you!” (Another example of great irony!)
Amoris Lætitia Love in Marriage Love is not boastful (95-96)
The word, perpereúetai, denotes vainglory, the need to be haughty, nit-picking and somewhat pushy. Those who love not only refrain from speaking too much about themselves, but are focused on others; they do not need to be the center of attention. The word that comes next – physioútai – is similar, indicating that love is not arrogant. Literally, it means that we do not become “puffed up” before others. It also points to something more subtle: an obsession with showing off and a loss of a sense of reality. Such people think that, because they are more “spiritual” or “wise”, they are more important than they really are. Paul uses this verb on other occasions, as when he says that “knowledge puffs up”, whereas “love builds up” (1 Cor 8:1). Some think that they are important because they are more knowledgeable than others; they want to lord it over them. Yet what really makes us important is a love that understands, shows concern, and embraces the weak. Elsewhere the word is used to criticize those who are “inflated” with their own importance (cf. 1 Cor 4:18) but in fact are filled more with empty words than the real “power” of the Spirit (cf. 1 Cor 4:19). It is important for Christians to show their love by the way they treat family members who are less knowledgeable about the faith, weak or less sure in their convictions. At times the opposite occurs: the supposedly mature believers within the family become unbearably arrogant. Love, on the other hand, is marked by humility; if we are to understand, forgive and serve others from the heart, our pride has to be healed and our humility must increase. Jesus told his disciples that in a world where power prevails, each tries to dominate the other, but “it shall not be so among you” (Mt 20:26). The inner logic of Christian love is not about importance and power; rather, “whoever would be first among you must be your slave” (Mt 20:27). In family life, the logic of domination and competition about who is the most intelligent or powerful destroys love. Saint Peter’s admonition also applies to the family: “Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility towards one another, for ‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble’” (1 Pet 5:5).
Novena in Honor of Saint John Marie Vianney
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be
Scotch Whisky Day
Scotch Whisky Day was created to celebrate this alcoholic beverage in all of its glory and remind people that Ballantine’s is not as good as it gets!
How to celebrate Scotch Whisky DayThere are hundreds of distilleries in Scotland you have likely never heard of that make whisky better than you’ve ever tried before, and this day is the day to experience them. The best part is that not all good Scotch whiskies are expensive, so if you want to enjoy this day to the fullest, you can order 5 or 6 miniatures—or more, if you decide to invite people over to share the fun—and enjoy an evening of sampling the unique whiskies Scotland has to offer. Ten-, twelve- and even fifteen-year-old single malt Scotch whisky miniatures can be purchased for under £5 and are sure to help you understand why this drink is loved worldwide. and because it is usually a bad idea to drink strong alcohol on an empty stomach, make sure you have some snacks on hand during your whisky-tasting as well! Cheeses like Roquefort go well with many whiskies, as does high-quality dark chocolate. If you feel like eating something more filling, try a simple meat dish like slow-roasted pork spareribs.
There are also quite a few films to choose from that would be perfect for this day, such as The Angel’s Share, an acclaimed Scottish comedy-drama about a man trying to get his life back on track after narrowly avoiding a prison sentence. The titular “angel’s share”, is what distilleries call the portion (share) of a whisky’s volume that is lost to evaporation during aging in oak barrels.
 Pope Francis, Encyclical on Love.