Thursday, 4 September 2008

Holy Moses

For some months now, as part of my daily devotions, I've been reading the day's Martyrlogy. My family kindly bought me a copy when we had a reunion in Rome in the spring. It really has been an interesting exercise. For instance, did you know that the Old Testament prophets and some other figures have an annual feastday? Today is the feastday of Saint Moses, for instance. The translation below is my own, done in rather a hurry, so excuse any blunders.

4th September
The day before the Nones of September, the third day of the current lunar cycle.
1. The commemoration of Saint Moses, prophet, whom God chose to lead his oppressed people out of Egypt and into the promised land, to whom also he revealed himself on Mount Sinai, saying 'I am who am' and gave the Law to govern the lives of the chosen people. This servant of God died, full of days, on Mount Nebo in the land of Moab, in sight of the promised land.
2. At Chalons, in Gaul, St Marcellus, martyr.
3. At Rome, in the cemetery of Maximus, on via Salaria, the burial of Pope St Boniface I, who settled many disputed ecclesiastical matters.
4. Chartres, in Neustria, St Caletricus, bishop.
5. Heresfeld in Saxony, St Ida, widow of Duke Ecbert, noted for her care of the poor and her assiduous prayers.
6. At Mende in Aquitaine, St Fredaldus, bishop and martyr.
7. At Cologne in Lotharingia, St Irmgard, who, as Countess of Süchteln, gave her goods for church building.
8. At Palermo in Sicily, St Rosalia, virgin, who on Monte Pellegrino is believed to have lived a solitary life.
9. At Cuneo in Piedmont, blessed Catherine Mattei, virgin, Penitential Sister of St Dominic, who suffered constant bad health, the calumnies of men and many temptations with wonderful charity and bore them with a host of virtues.
10. At anchor on the open sea just outside Rochefort on the French coast, blessed Scipio Jerome Brigéat de Lambert, priest and martyr, who, during the persecution of the French Revolution, being a canon of Avranches, was thrown into a prison hulk under inhuman conditions on account of his priesthood, where he died of hunger.
11. In the town of Sillery in Quebec, Canada, blessed Mary of St Cecilia of Rome (Dinah) Bélanger, virgin, from the religious Congregation of Jesus and Mary who lived only a short time dedicated to God on account of grave illness.
12. In the town of Oropesa, in Castille, on the Spanish coast, blessed Joseph Paschal Carda Saporta, priest from the Priestly Society of Diocesan Work, and martyr, who, while the persecution of the Church [in the Spanish Civil War] raged, was taken in glorious martyrdom in the hatred of religion.
13. In the village of Teulada in Spain near Lucentum [I can't translate this: anyone?], blessed Francisco Sendra Ivars, priest and martyr, who was martyred in the same persecution of the faith.
14. Near the village of Genovés in the district of Valencia, also in Spain, blessed Bernard (Joseph) Bieda Grau, a religious of the Order of Friars Minor (Capuchins) and martyr, who in the same turbulent period fought mightily for Christ.
et alibi aliorum plurimorum sanctorum Martyrum, Confessorum, atque sanctarum Virginum.
This is a fairly typical day, in fact. They might have added (but didn't) St Cuthbert, of course. Him they put on the 20th March. In the Sarum Calendar, Cuthbert is kept on 20th March, whereas today was his translation (presumably from Lindesfarne to Durham).
There are usually a couple of English martyrs—they often tend to coalesce around the quarterly Assizes—and a couple of priests from the prison hulks at Rochefort, some martyrs of the Spanish Civil War period, and usually a couple of names of people killed for being Polish by the Nazis, and beatified by Pope John Paul II.
Yesterday and the day before, there were commemorated countless numbers of clerics guillotined in Paris during the revolution. The numbers done on one day are quite shocking: On 1st September, 116 bishops, priests and other clerics in Paris, and on 2nd September another 75.


Anonymous said...

I had bought the new martyrology when it was published in 2001 and started reading it daily, but then ceased again. Now that I have changed to the 1962 Breviary, there is an actual place for the martyrology at Prime; however, I am using the old martyrology, as that seems more consistent, although I certainly miss the new Saints (sometimes, when I have time, I read the new martyrology along and take the liberty of simply adding the new Saints). However, I thought (but maybe i misremember) that the "Et alibi aliorum" hadn't made it into the new martyrology?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for that Father. I have the Martyrology and keep meaning to try to get into the habit of reading it. This encourages me.

ps. Lucentum = Alicante.

Fr Michael Brown said...

Today is the Translation of St Cuthbert in H & N. For the last couple of years it had been a feria, while we kept the 20th March as a solemnity, but the new diocesan calendar has restored this other feast I`m glad to say.

Anonymous said...

Mmmpph. Surely if they were killed for being Polish then they wouldn't count as martyrs?

Pastor in Monte said...

Berenike: "you can say that; I couldn't possibly comment……"