DAY 37 - MARY, HELP OF CHRISTIANS, PRAY FOR US
SET THE WORLD ABLAZE
PRAY A ROSARY
- Rosary of the Day: Joyful Mysteries
- Traditional 54 Day Rotation: Joyful Mysteries
103 KOREAN MARTYRS-SUKKOT-Day of Peace-Harvest Moon
Job, Chapter 6, Verse 21
It is thus that you have now become for me; you see a terrifying thing and are AFRAID.
Job is a horrifying thing to look upon. He is just plain nasty. Full of oozing sores and covered in filth. He kind of looks like our savior on the way to pay for our sins. Job is scaring his neighbors and they find no fun in fear. Can you run away from your fears?
The words “Be Not Afraid” are written more than 365 times in the Bible. God has reminded us continuously throughout Sacred Scripture to have no fear and trust in Him. Sometimes circumstances let our fear take the lead while our faith in God lags behind.
St. John Paul II reminds us to “Be Not Afraid”.
“Have no fear of moving into the unknown. Simply step out fearlessly knowing that I am with you, therefore no harm can befall you; all is very, very well. Do this in complete faith and confidence.”
We must remember the greatness of our God and trust in His plan, even during times when it seems like He is not there.
1. Here are three important tips to keep in mind:
Remember that Christ has defeated sin and death so that we can have an abundant life in Him.
John 10:10 says that “A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy; I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). Christ came into this world, vulnerable and susceptible to suffering, so that we may be freed from the bondage of sin through His death. His Resurrection from the dead should be a cause of great joy for us. Our fears should shrink from the realization of Christ’s Redemption.
2. Get out of your comfort zone.
This saying may sound cliche, but it is imperative! As Neale Donald Walsch has said: “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” It is not until we face our fears that we will truly start living our lives to the full.
3. Do not become discouraged!
Bad times are bound to happen, but it is important to have faith during those times, though it may be difficult. Deuteronomy 31:8 says that “It is the LORD who goes before you; he will be with you and will never fail you or forsake you. So do not fear or be dismayed.” It is important to remember God’s presence in our lives. Although there is bound to be hard times throughout life, we must recognize that God is with us more than ever during those tumultuous times, even if His Presence is not felt. When confronted with unforeseen circumstances, we have two choices to make. We can either allow ourselves to be paralyzed by fear, or we can surrender ourselves to God. In the end, the choice to have faith in the face of fear will deepen our trust in God. Let us not run away from fear, but face it head on, knowing that God is in control. He will not allow our fears to get the better of us, but He will use them for our own benefit, drawing us closer and closer to Himself.
1805 Four virtues play a
pivotal role and accordingly are called "cardinal"; all the others
are grouped around them. They are prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance.
"If anyone loves righteousness, [Wisdom's] labors are virtues; for she
teaches temperance and prudence, justice, and courage." These virtues are
praised under other names in many passages of Scripture.
During the 17th century the Christian faith was brought to Korea through the zeal of lay persons. From the very beginning these Christians suffered terrible persecutions and many suffered martyrdom during the 19th century. Today's feast honors a group of 103 martyrs. Notable of these were Andrew Kim Taegon, the first Korean priest, and the lay apostle, Paul Chong Hasang. Also, among the Korean martyrs were three bishops and seven priests, but for the most part they were heroic laity, men and women, married and single of all ages. They were canonized by Pope John Paul II on May 6, 1984.
St. Andrew Kim Taegon and St. Paul Chong
Hasang and their companions
This first native Korean priest was the son of Korean converts. His father, Ignatius Kim, was martyred during the persecution of 1839 and was beatified in 1925. After baptism at the age of fifteen, Andrew traveled thirteen hundred miles to the seminary in Macao, China. After six years he managed to return to his country through Manchuria. That same year he crossed the Yellow Sea to Shanghai and was ordained a priest. Back home again, he was assigned to arrange for more missionaries to enter by a water route that would elude the border patrol. He was arrested, tortured and finally beheaded at the Han River near Seoul, the capital. Paul Chong Hasang was a lay apostle and a married man, aged forty-five. Christianity came to Korea during the Japanese invasion in 1592 when some Koreans were baptized, probably by Christian Japanese soldiers. Evangelization was difficult because Korea refused all contact with the outside world except for an annual journey to Beijing to pay taxes. On one of these occasions, around 1777, Christian literature obtained from Jesuits in China led educated Korean Christians to study. A home church began. When a Chinese priest managed to enter secretly a dozen years later, he found four thousand Catholics, none of whom had ever seen a priest. Seven years later there were ten thousand Catholics. Religious freedom came in 1883.
When Pope John Paul II visited Korea in 1984, he canonized Andrew, Paul, ninety-eight Koreans and three French missionaries who had been martyred between 1839 and 1867. Among them were bishops and priests, but for the most part they were laypersons: forty-seven women, forty-five men. Among the martyrs in 1839 was Columba Kim, an unmarried woman of twenty-six. She was put in prison, pierced with hot awls and seared with burning coals. She and her sister Agnes were disrobed and kept for two days in a cell with condemned criminals but were not molested. After Columba complained about the indignity, no more women were subjected to it. The two were beheaded. A boy of thirteen, Peter Ryou, had his flesh so badly torn that he could pull off pieces and throw them at the judges. He was killed by strangulation. Protase Chong, a forty-one-year-old noble, apostatized under torture and was freed. Later he came back, confessed his faith and was tortured to death.
Today there are approximately four million Catholics in Korea.
(Camping with Christ)begins at sunset
Sukkot (Hebrew: סוכות),
meaning Tabernacles, is the autumnal
'foot festival' in which the Jews are commanded to leave their permanent houses
and to dwell in booths for seven days. The idea behind this is to remember that
the Israelites lived in booths in the Wilderness for forty years. Additionally,
when the Temple stood in Jerusalem, this was a pilgrimage holiday to celebrate
the harvest. It is most likely our
Lord did this every year as He was a devout Jew.
Tabernacles are typically built out of wood, sheets and have a roof of a natural product, such as leaves, palm branches, through which the stars can be seen at night. The Succah must be built of certain dimensions (not too low or too high) and should have three or four walls. On Succot, it is customary for Jewish men buy a set of the four kinds/species comprising a lulav (a palm branch), an etrog (a citron), hadassim (myrtle) and aravot (willows).
Sukkot Facts & Quotes
· Sukkot is also a harvest festival and is sometimes referred to as Chag Ha-Asif, the Festival of Ingathering. No work is permitted on the first day, but some work is allowed on the intermediate days which are known as Chol Hamoed.
· Each day of Succot is associated with Ushpezin (visitors), one of seven Succah visitors. Each day has its visitor, starting with Abraham. The other visitors are Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Aaron, David and Solomon.
Hebrews 11:8 “By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going.”
· The book of Ecclesiastes is typically read in Synagogues. This book relates to the futility of man under the sun but concludes optimistically with the notion that we should just do our thing and serve God.
· There is a special Priest's (Cohen's) blessing performed at the Western Wall during Succot. The Western Wall is the last surviving wall of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem at the side of the Temple Mount. Thousands of Priests, who are believed to be descendants of the original priests, assemble at the Western Wall and perform blessings.
· In the days of Nehemiah, an original Bible was found with the passages relating to the building of a Succah.
a. All the people came together as one in the square before the Water Gate. They told Ezra the teacher of the Law to bring out the Book of the Law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded for Israel (Nehemiah 8:1).
b. They found written in the Law, which the Lord had commanded through Moses, that the Israelites were to live in temporary shelters during the festival of the seventh month (Nehemiah 8:14).
Sukkot Top Events and Things to Do
· Purchase or make your own Sukkah. They are typically designed to be assembled and disassembled quickly - in less than two hours by two people.
· One can buy the four kinds (of material used to build Sukkot as per the Torah) or order them from Israel. The four kinds include palm branches, an Etrog (citron), three willow branches and two myrtle branches. The palm, myrtle and willow are bound together in a palm holder.
· See the movie Ushpezim with English subtitles. It which relates to the four kinds and a couple's efforts to buy a most beautiful four species set, despite their poor economic situation. Ushpizin can be viewed on YouTube.
· Read the book of Ecclesiastes or watch a lecture about it. It was written by King Solomon. It relates to the futility of life, apart from basic belief and being righteous.
· Attend a local Succot fair.
A visit from Abraham
Genesis 22:9-10 “When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to slaughter his son.”
Just as the knife was being hurled downward, the angel of the Lord said “Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me” (Gen 22:12), and “because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will surely bless you, and I will surely multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore. And your offspring shall possess the gate of his enemies, and in your offspring shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed my voice” (Gen 22:16-18).
Catechism of the Catholic Church
· 60 The people descended from Abraham would be the trustee of the promise made to the patriarchs, the chosen people, called to prepare for that day when God would gather all his children into the unity of the Church. They would be the root on to which the Gentiles would be grafted, once they came to believe.
· 72 God chose Abraham and made a covenant with him and his descendants. By the covenant God formed his people and revealed his law to them through Moses. Through the prophets, he prepared them to accept the salvation destined for all humanity.
· 146 Abraham thus fulfils the definition of faith in Hebrews 11:1: "Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen": "Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness." Because he was "strong in his faith", Abraham became the "father of all who believe".
· 165 It is then we must turn to the witnesses of faith: to Abraham, who "in hope... believed against hope"; to the Virgin Mary, who, in "her pilgrimage of faith", walked into the "night of faith" in sharing the darkness of her son's suffering and death; and to so many others: "Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith."
· 706 Against all human hope, God promises descendants to Abraham, as the fruit of faith and of the power of the Holy Spirit. In Abraham's progeny all the nations of the earth will be blessed. This progeny will be Christ himself, in whom the outpouring of the Holy Spirit will "gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad." God commits himself by his own solemn oath to giving his beloved Son and "the promised Holy Spirit . . . [who is] the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it."
International Day of Peace
International Day of Peace seeks to promote peace among nations and peoples. Peace is recognized as both an innate state of being, and a dynamic evolutionary process wherein constructive growth can occur and the children of this and future generations may gain hope for a better world to inherit. International Day of Peace was established by the United Nations in 1981. In 2002, the United Nations declared it a permanent holiday. Through education and public awareness events, the UN endeavors to strengthen the ideals of peace among all of the world's inhabitants. International Day of Peace is observed on September 21st each year. On this day, the UN urges all hostilities to stop, worldwide.
Inner Peace of Christ
On Dec. 14, 1989, the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith released its "Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on Some Aspects of Christian Meditation." This document, approved by Pope John Paul II, recognizes that some Christians, experiencing a "spiritual restlessness arising from a life subjected to the driving pace of a technologically advanced society," have investigated certain Eastern techniques of prayer, seeking "a path to interior peace and psychic balance." Eastern methods of prayer often depart from Christian principles by "abandoning not only meditation on the salvific works accomplished in history by the God of the Old and New Covenant, but also the very idea of the One and Triune God." Instead, inner peace and union with the Absolute is attained by "immersion 'in the indeterminate abyss of the divinity'"; hence, a person can lose his identity by being "swallowed up" by the Deity. Contemporary Catholics seeking inner peace need not dive headlong into Eastern mysticism. A host of Catholic writers has advocated ways by which spiritual happiness may be realized. One of the best but least recognized guides is Saint Leonard of Port Maurice (1676-1751), a Franciscan friar known for his preaching in defense of the Immaculate Conception. He offered four "rules" to help achieve peace of soul.
1. To be attached only to God. Status and wealth may be beneficial, but to be overly concerned about them is to invite inner spiritual havoc. The soul's primary need is communication with its Creator. One needs to view objects and persons in reference to God and His will if peace is to reign. To be "dead" to the world and creatures is paramount.
2. To surrender to Divine Providence. All Catholic spiritual writers are unanimous on this point: Sanctity and inner peace are attained only when God's will holds sway. The Lord knows best. Humbly accepting His will is vastly different from reluctantly putting up with it. When a person yields to the divine plan, he demonstrates a belief that God will sustain him--come what may.
3. To welcome suffering and hardship. Human nature tends to resist difficulties. Yet, spiritual perfection entails carrying the cross of Jesus. Scorn and rejection from others--while hardly pleasant--must be seen as an opportunity to experience solidarity with the suffering Christ.
4. To undertake only that which our situation in life demands. Often a person takes upon himself too many activities at once. "The more, the better" does not necessarily apply in the realm of good works. Prudence dictates what one can accomplish. Inner turmoil may spring from a plethora of activities, even when they are morally good acts. Prayer and counsel will determine what to undertake and what to forego.
When thousands are turning to Eastern methods of prayer in search of peace, Catholics should take heed of the advice offered nearly three centuries ago by this Italian preacher. Happiness of soul occurs when a person conforms himself to Christ through acceptance of the Father's will. Only then may one experience the peace which the world cannot give (cf. John 14:27).
Full Harvest Moon
to the almanac today is a Full Harvest Moon; take your children/grandchildren
for a hayride or a hike and camping trip and review this year’s harvests
35 Promises of God cont.
“So I say to you,
Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door
will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who
searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there
anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead
of a fish? Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? If you then,
who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will
the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
· Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Today's Fast: Reparations for offenses and blasphemies against God and the Blessed Virgin Mary
· Eat waffles and Pray for the assistance of the Angels
· Iceman’s Total Consecration to Mary-Day 10
· Monday: Litany of Humility