Mark, Chapter 5, Verse 33
The woman, realizing what had happened to her, approached in FEAR and trembling. She fell down before Jesus and told him the whole truth.
The woman in the chapter had suffered from a hemorrhage for twelve years and was ritually unclean by Jewish laws.
An unclean person in general had to avoid that which was holy and take steps to return to a state of cleanness. Uncleanness placed a person in a "dangerous" condition under threat of divine retribution, even death, if the person approached the sanctuary. Uncleanness could lead to expulsion of the land's inhabitants and its peril lingered upon those who did not undergo purification. Bodily discharges (blood for women, semen for men) represented a temporary loss of strength and life and movement toward death. Because decaying corpses discharged, so natural bodily discharges were reminders of sin and death. Physical imperfections representing a movement from "life" toward "death" moved a person ritually away from God who was associated with life. Purification rituals symbolized movement from death toward life and accordingly involved blood, the color red, and spring (lit. "living") water, all symbols of life.
For you know the gracious act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, for your sake he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9). Christ also being clean took this woman uncleanliness and gave her his Holiness. Indeed, she was filled with wonder and awe.
This day emulate our Lord by reflecting and living the prayer of St. Francis.
The Prayer of Saint Francis
Lord, make me an instrument of thy
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console,
To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life.
The Mediocre Man
· “The truly mediocre man admirers everything a little and nothing with warmth… He considers every affirmation insolent, because every affirmation excludes the contradictory proposition. But if you are slightly friendly and slightly hostile to all things, he will consider you wise and reserved. The mediocre man says there is good and evil in all things, and that we must not be absolute in our judgments.
· If you strongly affirm the truth, the mediocre man will say that you have too much confidence in yourself.
· The mediocre man regrets that the Christian religion has dogmas. He would like it to teach ethics, and if you tell him that its code of morals comes from its dogmas as the consequence comes from the principle, he will answer that you exaggerate…If the word ‘exaggeration’ did not exist, the mediocre man would invent it.
· The mediocre man appears habitually modest. He cannot be humble, or he would cease to be mediocre.
· The humble man scorns all lies, even where glorified by the whole earth, and he bows the knee before every truth…If the naturally mediocre man becomes seriously Christian, he ceases absolutely to be mediocre…
· The man who loves is never mediocre.”
For as the heavens tower over the earth, so his mercy towers over those who fear him.
Today, July 14, is Bastille Day, the commemoration of the revolution that brought down France’s Ancien Régime and led to the establishment of a new order that promised to totally refashion society. Unlike the American Revolution, which was fought to conserve rights and maintain political order, the French Revolution destroyed the fabric of French society. No aspect of human life was untouched. The Committee of Public Safety – influenced by Rousseau – claimed that to convert the oppressed French nation to democracy, “you must entirely refashion a people whom you wish to make free, destroy its’ prejudices, alter its habits, limit its necessities, root up its vices, purify its desires.” To achieve this end, the new rational state, whose primary ideological plank was that the sovereignty of “the people” is unlimited, attempted to eliminate French traditions, norms, and religious beliefs.
The revolutionary governing bodies were particularly determined to destroy every vestige of the Roman Catholic Church because France was hailed by Rome as the Church’s “eldest daughter” and the monarch had dedicated “our person, our state, our crown and our subjects” to the Blessed Virgin. The Constituent Assembly began the campaign against the Church by stating in the Declaration of the Rights of Man, “no body or individual may exercise any authority which does not proceed directly from the nation.” In other words, the Church could no longer have any say in public matters. The secular state would now have the final word over every aspect of human and social life.
Next, the government abrogated the 1516 Concordat that defined France’s relationship with the Vicar of Christ. Financial and diplomatic relations with the papacy ceased. In the name of freedom, all monastic vows were suspended and in February 1790, legislation was approved to suppress the monasteries and confiscate their properties. The Civil Constitution of the Clergy, passed on July 12, 1790, decreed that the priesthood was a civil body and all bishops and priests were to be selected by the people and paid by the state.
· The pope was to have no say in the matter. In addition, clerics had to swear an oath of loyalty to the French Constitution. Dissidents had to resign their ministries, and many were prosecuted as criminals. Lay Catholics loyal to the pope were treated as rebels and traitors. With only four out of 135 bishops taking the oath in 1791, the more radical Legislative Assembly ordered additional sanctions against the Church. All religious congregations were suppressed and wearing clerical garb was forbidden.
· Priests loyal to the papacy were automatically guilty of “fanaticism” and sentenced to ten years imprisonment. Processions were forbidden; crucifixes and religious artifacts were stripped out of churches. Government priests were granted freedom to marry, divorce was permissible, and marriage became a civil procedure.
· Also, education, managed for centuries by the Church, was nationalized. To further de-Christianize France, a new civil religion was introduced – patriotism. The Gregorian calendar was eliminated and replaced with names related to nature. To abolish Sunday worship, months were rearranged to contain three “weeks” of ten days apiece, thus designating every tenth day for rest.
· Catholic holy days were replaced with national holidays and civic days of worship. The “Cult of Great Men” (i.e., Rousseau) replaced the veneration of saints. The use of the word “saint” was forbidden. “There should be no more public and national worship but that of Liberty and Holy Equality,” declared the revolutionary government. Every city and village were ordered to erect an “altar to the fatherland” and to conduct July “Federation Month” patriotic rites.
· The Feast of Nature was observed in August and the Cult of Reason was celebrated at Paris’ Civic Temple, formerly the Cathedral of Notre Dame. A female dancer was crowned as the Goddess of Reason and performed for the assembly. In 1794, the deistic cult of the Supreme Being replaced the atheistic adoration of reason. At the first public worship, the self-declared high priest, Robespierre, pronounced in his homily, “the idea of the Supreme Being and the soul’s immortality is a continuous summons to justice and consequently social and republican.”
· Despite all the efforts of the missionaries of terror, the Church was not stamped out of existence. The heroism of the thousands of martyred bishops, priests, and religious inspired millions of the faithful and caused a spiritual renascence in France during the nineteenth century. The notorious political rogue and excommunicated bishop of Autun, the Prince de Talleyrand, reviewing that terrible period of persecution, conceded, “Regardless of my own part in this affair, I readily admit that the Civil Constitution of the Clergy . . . was perhaps the greatest political mistake of the Assembly, quite apart from the dreadful crimes which flowed there from.” General of the Republic, Henri Clarke, agreed. In a report to the government in 1796, he wrote, “Our revolution, so far as religion is concerned, has proved a complete failure.
· France has become once more Roman Catholic, and we may be on the point of needing the pope himself in order to enlist clerical support for the Revolution.” The French ideologues learned, as did their barbaric heirs in the twentieth century, that every effort to destroy the Church and eliminate the faithful fails. As Christ Himself promised: “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
“Therefore, do not be afraid of them. Nothing is concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known. What I say to you in the darkness, speak in the light; what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna.
Bastille Day-the other story
Bastille Day marks the anniversary of the attacks on the French prison of Bastille, a symbol of King Louis XVI's power. On, July 14, 1789, a group of Parisian revolutionaries attacked the Bastille looking for gun powder to go with the rifles they had recently stolen from the Invalides. The revolutionaries stormed the prison, defeating the soldiers and bringing victory to the common people of France. This event marked the beginning of the French Revolution, the defeat of a monarchy and the birth of a republic as King Louis XVI was beheaded by use of a guillotine on July 21, 1793, in front of a crowd of Parisians. The anniversary of this attack is now the French National holiday and is observed on July 14th each year.
Bastille Day Facts & Quotes
· The French Revolution was brought about partially due to the unequal class system found in France during the late 1700s. The Catholic clergy held the highest position, next came Louis XVI and his court, and lastly were the general population. Without the benefit of being born into a higher class, the general population had almost no hope of ever bettering their station in life.
· Louis XVI's spending at Versailles and his financial support of the American Revolutionary War against the British, placed France in severe economic crisis. The general population was starving while King Louis XVI was building a great navy and continuing his lavish lifestyle in Versailles.
· The French flag consists of blue, white and red. White was the color of the Monarchy and red and blue represented Paris. During the Revolution, the white was surrounded by blue and then red.
· A revolution can be neither made nor stopped. The only thing that can be done is for one of several of its children to give it a direction by dint of victories. - Napoleon Bonaparte
Bastille Day Top Events and Things to Do
· Watch the Fireworks at the Eiffel Tower. They usually start around 11pm and can be viewed from the Champs de Mars and Trocadero.
· Attend a French military parade.
· Visit a French national museum as most are free to visit on Bastille Day or visit a local firehouse in France - they are open to the public on this holiday.
· Watch a movie or a documentary about the French Revolution. Our picks: The French Revolution (2005), Jefferson in Paris (1995), Marie Antoinette (2006), Danton (1983) and That Night in Varennes (1982)
· Go out to a French Restaurant. Many have specials for this day.
Grand Marnier Day
Grand Marnier Day celebrates this innovative adult beverage and all of the wonderful ways it can be used. Grand Marnier was the labor of love of Louis-Alexandre Marnier Lapostolle, founder of the Grand Marnier brand. His ambition to blend together Haitian tropical oranges with traditional Cognac out of France was seen as entirely unexpected during its time, but that didn’t deter him at all. Since then his family name has risen to mean quality and innovation in the liquor industry and maintains a position of distinction among connoisseurs. Nothing but the highest quality Cognac is used in the creation of Grand Marnier, specifically the Ugni Blanc grapes from within the Cognac region of France. The grapes are double distilled in copper stills to bring out the richest aromas and delicious flavor profile. The same Cognac has been sourced since the creation of Grand Marnier in 1880. Since their first release, they’ve continued to release other groundbreaking liquors including their Cordon Jaune, produced with a neutral grain spirit instead of Cognac, and their Cuvee du Centenaire, a limited release made with 25-year-old Cognacs.
How to Celebrate Grand Marnier Day
· The best way to celebrate Grand Marnier Day is to try out a few of the mixed drinks that can be made with it, and indulge in its rich succulent flavors.
· Why not start off with a Marnier & Bubbles! All you need to do is mix Grand Marnier with Champagne or another French sparkling white wine. The proportions are 1 ounce of Grand Marnier and 4 ounces of sparkling white wine. Then, for a splash of color, add a cherry.
· Or you can mix up a Grand Marnier-Ita. Simply mix 2 parts Tequila with 1-part juice of lime and mix it up. Pour it into a cocktail glass through a strainer with ice, and then add some lime wheels to finish it off.
Catechism of the Catholic Church
PART TWO: THE CELEBRATION OF THE CHRISTIAN MYSTERY
SECTION ONE THE SACRAMENTAL ECONOMY
CHAPTER TWO-THE SACRAMENTAL CELEBRATION OF THE PASCHAL MYSTERY
Article 2 LITURGICAL DIVERSITY AND THE UNITY OF THE MYSTERY
Liturgical traditions and the catholicity of the Church
1200 From the first community of Jerusalem until the parousia, it is the same Paschal mystery that the Churches of God, faithful to the apostolic faith, celebrate in every place. the mystery celebrated in the liturgy is one, but the forms of its celebration are diverse.
1201 The mystery of Christ is so unfathomably rich that it cannot be exhausted by its expression in any single liturgical tradition. the history of the blossoming and development of these rites witnesses to a remarkable complementarity. When the Churches lived their respective liturgical traditions in the communion of the faith and the sacraments of the faith, they enriched one another and grew in fidelity to Tradition and to the common mission of the whole Church.
1202 The diverse liturgical traditions have arisen by very reason of the Church's mission. Churches of the same geographical and cultural area came to celebrate the mystery of Christ through particular expressions characterized by the culture: in the tradition of the "deposit of faith," in liturgical symbolism, in the organization of fraternal communion, in the theological understanding of the mysteries, and in various forms of holiness. Through the liturgical life of a local church, Christ, the light and salvation of all peoples, is made manifest to the particular people and culture to which that Church is sent and in which she is rooted. the Church is catholic, capable of integrating into her unity, while purifying them, all the authentic riches of cultures.
1203 The liturgical traditions or rites presently in use in the Church are the Latin (principally the Roman rite, but also the rites of certain local churches, such as the Ambrosian rite, or those of certain religious orders) and the Byzantine, Alexandrian or Coptic, Syriac, Armenian, Maronite and Chaldean rites. In "faithful obedience to tradition, the sacred Council declares that Holy Mother Church holds all lawfully recognized rites to be of equal right and dignity, and that she wishes to preserve them in the future and to foster them in every way."
Liturgy and culture
1204 The celebration of the liturgy, therefore, should correspond to the genius and culture of the different peoples. In order that the mystery of Christ be "made known to all the nations . . . to bring about the obedience of faith," it must be proclaimed, celebrated, and lived in all cultures in such a way that they themselves are not abolished by it, but redeemed and fulfilled: It is with and through their own human culture, assumed and transfigured by Christ, that the multitude of God's children has access to the Father, in order to glorify him in the one Spirit.
1205 "In the liturgy, above all that of the sacraments, there is an immutable part, a part that is divinely instituted and of which the Church is the guardian, and parts that can be changed, which the Church has the power and on occasion also the duty to adapt to the cultures of recently evangelized peoples."
1206 "Liturgical diversity can be a source of enrichment, but it can also provoke tensions, mutual misunderstandings, and even schisms. In this matter it is clear that diversity must not damage unity. It must express only fidelity to the common faith, to the sacramental signs that the Church has received from Christ, and to hierarchical communion. Cultural adaptation also requires a conversion of heart and even, where necessary, a breaking with ancestral customs incompatible with the Catholic faith."
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Nineveh 90-Day 89