This blog is based on references in the Bible to fear. God wills that we “BE NOT AFRAID”. Many theologians state that the eighth deadly sin is fear. It is fear and its natural animal reaction to fight or flight that is the root cause of our failings to create a Kingdom of God on earth. By “the power of the Holy Spirit” we can be witnesses and “communicators” of a new and redeemed humanity “even to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:7 8). This blog is dedicated to Mary the Mother of God.
Friday, December 27, 2019
FEAST OF ST. JOHN
Proverbs, Chapter 28,
Happy those who
always fear; but those who harden
their hearts fall into evil.
Fear is a different verb than in the
phrase “to fear (or revere) the Lord.” The verb means to dread an oppressor.
The saying states a paradox: those who fear in the sense of being cautious are
declared happy, whereas those who are fearless will fall into traps they did
not “fear.” In short, there is good fear and bad fear. Speaking of fearless
today is the Feast of St. John, the only apostle that did not abandon our Lord
out of fear and witnessed his crucifixion.
brother of St. James the Greater, was a son of Zebedee, a fisherman of Galilee,
and of Salome, a cousin of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Matt. iv. 21). He was the
youngest of the apostles, and, with Peter and James, was the most trusted of
the disciples of Jesus, by Whom he was most tenderly loved, on which account he
is called the Disciple of Love. Of this Jesus gave the most convincing evidence
when, at the Last Supper, He allowed that disciple to lean upon His breast, and
when, from the cross, He committed to the care of John His own Mother. After
the ascension John preached the Gospel in Palestine; afterwards went to Asia
Minor, fixed his residence in Ephesus, and established many churches there. He
was, with the other apostles, taken prisoner and scourged by the Jews, and in
the year 95, under the Emperor Domitian, before the Latin Gate, at Rome, was
thrown into a vessel of boiling oil. Having endured this torture without
injury, he was then banished to the island of Patmos, where, by command of the
Lord, he wrote the Apocalypse, or Revelation, concerning the fortunes of the
Church. On returning from his banishment he again governed the churches of Asia
Minor as chief pastor, as he had done before, and, at the age of nearly one
hundred years, died at Ephesus a peaceful arid natural death.
Introit of the Mass reads: “In the midst of the Church the Lord opened his
mouth, and filled him with the spirit of wisdom and understanding, and clothed
him with a robe of glory. It is good to give praise to the Lord, and to sing to
Thy name, O Most High.”
Mercifully illustrate Thy Church, O Lord, that,
enlightened by the doctrines of Thy blessed apostle and evangelist St. John,
she may arrive at gifts everlasting.
feareth God will do good: and he that possesseth Justice shall lay hold on her,
and she will meet him as an honorable mother, and will receive him as a wife
married of a virgin. With the bread of life and understanding, she shall feed
him and give him the water of wholesome wisdom to drink: and she shall be made
strong in him, and he shall not be moved : and she shall hold him fast, and he
shall not be confounded: and she shall exalt him among his neighbors, and in
the midst of the Church she shall open his month, and shall fill him with the
spirit of wisdom and understanding, and shall clothe him with a robe of glory.
She shall heap upon him a treasure of joy and gladness, and our Lord God shall
cause him to inherit an everlasting name.
“He that loves wisdom,”
saith the Holy Ghost, “will obtain it, for it will not enter into a malicious
soul, nor dwell in a body subject to sins” (Wis. i. 4). St. John was from his
childhood an angel of purity, on which account he was particularly be loved by
Jesus, and endowed by the Holy Ghost with such wisdom and knowledge that, as
St. Augustine has remarked, he begins his gospel in a manner more lofty and
sublime than the other three evangelists. For while they walk with the God-man
upon earth, speaking comparatively little of His divinity, St. John, as if
despising the world, soars beyond the vault of heaven, above the hosts of
angels, and comes to Him by Whom all things are made, saying, “In the beginning
was the Word.” At the Last Supper he was permitted to lean on the bosom of
Jesus, but what he there drank in secretly he imparted openly. Apply thyself,
therefore, to purity of heart, and thou shalt be like St. John, a beloved
disciple of Jesus, and shalt be filled with heavenly wisdom.
At that time: Jesus said to Peter: Follow Me. Peter
turning about, saw that disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also leaned on
His breast at supper, and said: Lord, who is he that shall betray Thee? Him
therefore when Peter had seen, he saith to Jesus: Lord, and what shall this man
do? Jesus saith to him: So, I will have him to remain till I come, what is it
to thee? follow thou Me. This saying therefore went abroad among the brethren,
that that disciple should not die. And Jesus did riot say to him: He should not
die; but, So I will have him to remain till I come, what is it to thee? This is
that disciple who giveth testimony of these things, and hath written these things:
and we know that his testimony is true.
Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896. Feast of St John
Feast of St. John the Apostle commemorates his life. He was one of Jesus'
12 disciples. He was one of the three disciples, which included Peter and
James, who were involved in some of the most important events in the life and
ministry of Jesus Christ, including Jesus' crucifixion and transfiguration.
St John Facts
was a fisherman before he began following Christ. He was the brother of
St. James the Greater. Jesus gave the brothers the name, sons of thunder.
Jesus was dying on the cross, he asked John to take care of his mother (John
the Gospel of John, he frequently refers to the most beloved disciple. Some
theologians believe he is referring to himself, while others believe the
reference is used for the reader to insert himself into the role.
Paul, John was the most prolific writer in the New Testament. His body of
work includes 'The Revelation of John' and three epistles.
Feast Day for St. John the Apostle is held in the Roman Catholic Church and some
Protestant denominations on December 27, the third day of Christmas. In
the Orthodox Church, it is called the Feast of the Holy and Glorious Apostle
and Evangelist John the Theologian, which is held September 26. This
feast shouldn't be confused with the Feast of St. John the Baptist, which is
held in both faith traditions on June 24.
St John Top Events
and Things to Do
the Gospel of John. It is different than the other three Gospels and was
thought to be the last written of the four books in the New Testament.
the Revelation of John, thought to be written by the apostle. The rich
symbolism has been thought to foretell the end of the world, but many biblical
scholars believe it was written to offer hope to Christians persecuted by Rome.
John is the Patron Saint of Turkey. Consider visiting this beautiful
country - or take a virtual tour with Google Maps.
John answered the call to be an apostle of Jesus. Have you listened for Jesus's
call in your life?
wine is blessed on the Feast of St. John. Wine if used in moderation is a good
thing. Yet, sometimes it may cause an increase in our fears or make us fool
hardy when speaking, giving us a false sense of courage. So, blessing our wine
is a good idea to dedicate its use for our good and not our detriment.
Saint John was the only Apostle who did not suffer martyrdom,
though several attempts were made on his life. One of these involved giving him
a glass of wine that had been poisoned. The saint, however, suffered no harm
because he blessed it before he drank. It is in honor of this deliverance that
the blessing and drinking of wine on St. John's Day was once a popular custom.
People had a bottle of wine blessed after the Saint's Mass and then drank it at
the family dinner (notice how easily this can still be done). The special
blessing for this occasion from the Roman ritual sums up the meaning of this
%Blessing for the 1st
Holy Lord, Father
Almighty, eternal God! You willed that Your Son, equal to You in agelessness
and substance should descend from heaven and in the fullness of time be born of
the most holy Virgin Mary. Thus, He could seek the lost and wayward sheep and
carry it on His shoulders to the sheepfold, and could cure the man fallen among
robbers of his wounds by pouring in oil and wine. Deign now to bless and
sanctify this wine which You produced for man's drink. Whoever drinks of it on
this holy feast, grant him life in body and soul. By Your goodness, let it be
to him strength to prosper him on the way, that his journey may come to a
blessed end. Through the same Christ our Lord.Amen.
%Blessing for the 2nd
O Lord God deign to
bless and consecrate with Thy right hand this cup of wine and of whatever
drink: and grant that through the merits of Saint John, Apostle and Evangelist,
all who believe in Thee and who drink from this cup may be blessed and
protected. And as blessed John drank from the cup of poison and remained
completely unharmed, may, through his merits, all who drink from the cup on
this day in honor of blessed John be rescued from every sickness of poison and
from every kind of harm; and, offering themselves up body and soul, may they be
delivered from all fault. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
%Blessing of the 3rd Cup
Bless, O Lord, this
creature of drink: that it may be a remedy of salvation for all who consume it:
and grant through the invocation of Thy holy name that whoever will have tasted
of it may, through Thy giving, experience health of the soul as well as of the
body. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
%Blessing of the 4th Cup
Almighty God, Father,
Son, and Holy Spirit descend upon this creature of wine and of whatever drink
and remain forever. Amen.
Today, on the day honoring the disciple who lay closest to
Christ the High Priest during the first Mass, was the festival for priests.
The wine drunk or blessed
on this day is called "St.John's Love" (Johannesminne) or St.
John's Wine. When the wine has been blessed by a priest, it
becomes a sacramental, and is kept in the house throughout the year as a
good thing for a newlywed couple to drink on their return from church, as an
aid for travelers before a long trip, and as succor for the dying after they
have received the sacraments. In the Catholic Cookbook, William Kaufman
includes a recipe for St. John's Wine:
teaspoon ground cardamom
two-inch cinnamon sticks
teaspoon ground nutmeg
Pour the wine into a large
saucepan. Add the remaining ingredients. Boil for 5 minutes (after which point
the alcohol is virtually evaporated). (Serve hot. 8-10 servings).
Today is traditionally the third day of Christmas
and the Three French Hens from the song the 12 days of
Christmas represent the three cardinal virtues of Faith, Hope and
Charity. Let us talk to the Lord today and ask Him how we are doing
in these three virtues and how we may improve in them.