Sunday, September 20, 2015

Saint September 21 : St. Matthew : #Apostle : Patron of Accountants, Taxes and Bankers

St. Matthew
APOSTLE
Feast: September 21
Information:
Feast Day:
September 21
Died:
January 24, near Hierapolis or Ethiopia
Patron of:
accountants, bankers, bookkeepers, customs officers, financial officers, guards, money managers, security forces, security guards, stock brokers, tax collectors

Apostle and evangelist. The name Matthew is derived from the Hebrew Mattija, being shortened to Mattai in post-Biblical Hebrew. In Greek it is sometimes spelled Maththaios, B D, and sometimes Matthaios, CEKL, but grammarians do not agree as to which of the two spellings is the original. Matthew is spoken of five times in the New Testament; first in Matt., ix, 9, when called by Jesus to follow Him, and then four times in the list of the Apostles, where he is mentioned in the seventh (Luke, vi, 15, and Mark, iii, 18), and again in the eighth place (Matt., x, 3, and Acts, i, 13). The man designated in Matt., ix, 9, as "sitting in the custom house", and "named Matthew" is the same as Levi, recorded in Mark, ii, 14, and Luke, v, 27, as "sitting at the receipt of custom". The account in the three Synoptics is identical, the vocation of Matthew-Levi being alluded to in the same terms. Hence Levi was the original name of the man who was subsequently called Matthew; the Maththaios legomenos of Matt., ix, 9, would indicate this. The fact of one man having two names is of frequent occurrence among the Jews. It is true that the same person usually bears a Hebrew name such as "Shaoul" and a Greek name, Paulos. However, we have also examples of individuals with two Hebrew names as, for instance, Joseph-Caiaphas, Simon-Cephas, etc. It is probable that Mattija, "gift of Iaveh", was the name conferred upon the tax-gatherer by Jesus Christ when He called him to the Apostolate, and by it he was thenceforth known among his Christian brethren, Levi being his original name. Matthew, the son of Alpheus (Mark, ii, 14) was a Galilean, although Eusebius informs us that he was a Syrian. As tax-gatherer at Capharnaum, he collected custom duties for Herod Antipas, and, although a Jew, was despised by the Pharisees, who hated all publicans. When summoned by Jesus, Matthew arose and followed Him and tendered Him a feast in his house, where tax-gatherers and sinners sat at table with Christ and His disciples. This drew forth a protest from the Pharisees whom Jesus rebuked in these consoling words: "I came not to call the just, but sinners". No further allusion is made to Matthew in the Gospels, except in the list of the Apostles. As a disciple and an Apostle he thenceforth followed Christ, accompanying Him up to the time of His Passion and, in Galilee, was one of the witnesses of His Resurrection. He was also amongst the Apostles who were present at the Ascension, and afterwards withdrew to an upper chamber, in Jerusalem, praying in union with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and with his brethren (Acts, i, 10 and 14).
Of Matthew's subsequent career we have only inaccurate or legendary data. St. Irenæus tells us that Matthew preached the Gospel among the Hebrews, St. Clement of Alexandria claiming that he did this for fifteen years, and Eusebius maintains that, before going into other countries, he gave them his Gospel in the mother tongue. Ancient writers are not as one as to the countries evangelized by Matthew, but almost all mention Ethiopia to the south of the Caspian Sea (not Ethiopia in Africa), and some Persia and the kingdom of the Parthians, Macedonia, and Syria. According to Heracleon, who is quoted by Clement of Alexandria, Matthew did not die a martyr, but this opinion conflicts with all other ancient testimony. Let us add, however, that the account of his martyrdom in the apocryphal Greek writings entitled "Martyrium S. Matthæi in Ponto" and published by Bonnet, "Acta apostolorum apocrypha" (Leipzig, 1898), is absolutely devoid of historic value. Lipsius holds that this "Martyrium S. Matthæi", which contains traces of Gnosticism, must have been published in the third century. There is a disagreement as to the place of St. Matthew's martyrdom and the kind of torture inflicted on him, therefore it is not known whether he was burned, stoned, or beheaded. The Roman Martyrology simply says: "S. Matthæi, qui in Æthiopia prædicans martyrium passus est". Various writings that are now considered apocryphal, have been attributed to St. Matthew. In the "Evangelia apocrypha" (Leipzig, 1876), Tischendorf reproduced a Latin document entitled: "De Ortu beatæ Mariæ et infantia Salvatoris", supposedly written in Hebrew by St. Matthew the Evangelist, and translated into Latin by Jerome, the priest. It is an abridged adaptation of the "Protoevangelium" of St. James, which was a Greek apocryphal of the second century. This pseudo-Matthew dates from the middle or the end of the sixth century. The Latin Church celebrates the feast of St. Matthew on 21 September, and the Greek Church on 16 November. St. Matthew is represented under the symbol of a winged man, carrying in his hand a lance as a characteristic emblem.

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#PopeFrancis at #Vespers "Jesus prays and he invites us to pray, because he knows that some things can only be received as gifts..." FULL TEXT/Video

Pope Francis arrives at Havana cathedral - AP
Pope Francis arrives at Havana cathedral - AP
20/09/2015 23:30

Speaking at Vespers in Havana's Cathedral on Sunday, Pope Francis put aside his prepared homily and spoke from the heart to priests:
A full report on the Pope's words at Vespers will follow -  below please find an English translation of the Pope’s prepared homily:
“We are gathered in this historic Cathedral of Havana to sing with psalms the faithfulness of God towards his people, with thanksgiving for his presence and his infinite mercy.  A faithfulness and mercy not only commemorated by this building, but also by the living memory of some of the elderly among us, who know from experience that “his mercy endures forever and his faithfulness throughout the ages”.  For this, brothers and sisters, let us together give thanks.
Let us give thanks for the Spirit’s presence in the rich and diverse charisms of all those missionaries who came to this land and became Cubans among Cubans, a sign that God’s mercy is eternal.
The Gospel presents Jesus in dialogue with his Father.  It brings us to the heart of the prayerful intimacy between the Father and the Son.  As his hour drew near, Jesus prayed for his disciples, for those with him and for those who were yet to come (cf. Jn 17:20).  We do well to remember that, in that crucial moment, Jesus made the lives of his disciples, our lives, a part of his prayer.  He asked his Father to keep them united and joyful.  Jesus knew full well the hearts of his disciples, and he knows full well our own.  And so he prays to the Father to save them from a spirit of isolation, of finding refuge in their own certainties and comfort zones, of indifference to others and division into “cliques” which disfigure the richly diverse face of the Church.  These are situations which lead to a kind of isolation and ennui, a sadness that slowly gives rise to resentment, to constant complaint, to boredom; this “is not God’s will for us, nor is it the life in the Spirit” (Evangelii Gaudium, 2) to which he invited them, to which he has invited us.  That is why Jesus prays that sadness and isolation will not prevail in our hearts.  We want to do the same, we want to join in Jesus’ prayer, in his words, so that we can say together: “Father, keep them in your name… that they may be one, even as we are one” (Jn 17:11), “that your joy may be complete” (Jn 15:11).
Jesus prays and he invites us to pray, because he knows that some things can only be received as gifts; some things can only be experienced as gifts.  Unity is a grace which can be bestowed upon us only by the Holy Spirit; we have to ask for this grace and do our best to be transformed by that gift.
Unity is often confused with uniformity; with actions, feelings and words which are all identical.  This is not unity, it is conformity.  It kills the life of the Spirit; it kills the charisms which God has bestowed for the good of his people.  Unity is threatened whenever we try to turn others into our own image and likeness.  Unity is a gift, not something to be imposed by force or by decree.  I am delighted to see you here, men and women of different generations, backgrounds and experiences, all united by our common prayer.  Let us ask God to increase our desire to be close to one another.  To be neighbors, always there for one another, with all our many differences, interests and ways of seeing things.  To speak straightforwardly, despite our disagreements and disputes, and not behind each other’s backs.  May we be shepherds who are close to our people, open to their questions and problems. Conflicts and disagreements in the Church are to be expected and, I would even say, needed.  They are a sign that the Church is alive and that the Spirit is still acting, still enlivening her.  Woe to those communities without a “yes” and a “no”!  They are like married couples who no longer argue, because they have lost interest, they have lost their love.
The Lord prays also that we may be filled with his own “complete joy” (cf. Jn 17:13).  The joy of Christians, and especially of consecrated men and women, is a very clear sign of Christ’s presence in their lives.  When we see sad faces, it is a warning that something is wrong.  Significantly, this is the request which Jesus makes of the Father just before he goes out to the Garden to renew his own “fiat”.  I am certain that all of you have had to bear many sacrifices and, for some of you, for several decades now, these sacrifices have proved difficult.  Jesus prays, at the moment of his own sacrifice, that we will never lose the joy of knowing that he overcomes the world.  This certainty is what inspires us, morning after morning, to renew our faith.  “With a tenderness which never disappoints, but is always capable of restoring our joy” – by his prayer, and in the faces of our people – Christ “makes it possible for us to lift up our heads and to start anew” (Evangelii Gaudium, 3).
How important, how valuable for the life of the Cuban people, is this witness which always and everywhere radiates such joy, despite our weariness, our misgivings and even our despair, that dangerous temptation which eats away at our soul!
Dear brothers and sisters, Jesus prays that all of us may be one, and that his joy may abide within us.  May we do likewise, as we unite ourselves to one another in prayer.”

#PopeFrancis meets Fidel Castro in #Cuba a Historic Event - #PopeinCuba

Pope Francis meets former Cuban leader Fidel Castro at his home in Havana on Sunday  - AP
Pope Francis meets former Cuban leader Fidel Castro at his home in Havana on Sunday - AP
20/09/2015 20:49



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday met with former Cuban president Fidel Castro, shortly after celebrating Mass in Havana's Plaza de la Revolución. The 30-40 minute meeting took place in Fidel Castro's home, with his wife, children, and grandchildren also present at the encounter.
Pope Francis gave Castro several books,  including one by Italian priest Alessandro Pronzato and another by Spanish Jesuit Segundo Llorentea. The Holy Father also gave him a book and two CDs of his homilies, as well as his two encyclical letters, Lumen Fidei and Laudato si'.
In return, Castro gave Pope Francis an interview book entitled, "Fidel and Religion," written in 1985 by Brazilian priest Frei Betto. The dedication reads: "For Pope Francis, on occasion of his visit to Cuba, with the admiration and respect of the Cuban people."
The head of the Vatican Press Office, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, said the meeting was "familiar and informal," and the two men spoke about "protecting the environment and the great problems of the contemporary world."
Father Lombardi compared the private encounter to that which took place with Pope Benedict XVI in 2012, saying Fidel Castro asked Pope Benedict many questions, while Sunday's meeting with Pope Francis was "more of a conversation." Text Shared from Radio Vaticana - Video RomeReports:

#Novena for Feast of the #Archangels St. Michael - St. Gabriel - St. Raphael

September 29th is the Feast of the Archangels. Here are three novenas to the archangels St. Michael, St. Gabriel, and St. Raphael.

Novena to St. Michael the Archangel
Novena Dates September 21 - 29, Feast Day September 29

St. Michael the Archangel, loyal champion of God and His people, I turn to you with confidence and seek your powerful intercession. For the love of God, Who made you so glorious in grace and power, and for the love of the Mother of Jesus, the Queen of the Angels, be pleased to hear my prayer. You know the value on my soul in the eyes of God. May no stain of evil ever disfigure its beauty. Help me to conquer the evil spirit who tempts me. I desire to imitate your loyalty to God and Holy Mother Church and your great love for God and people. And since you are God's messenger for the care of his people, I entrust to you this special request: (Mention your request).

St. Michael, since you are, by the Will of the Creator, the powerful intercessor of Christians, I have great confidence in your prayers. I earnestly trust that if it is God's holy Will, my petition will be granted.

Pray for me, St. Michael, and also for those I love. Protect us in all dangers of body and soul. Help us in our daily needs. Through your powerful intercession, may we live a holy life, die a happy death, and reach heaven where we may praise and love God with you forever. Amen.


Novena to St. Gabriel the Archangel
Novena Dates September 21 - 29, Feast Day September 29

St. Gabriel the Archangel, I venerate you as the "Angel of the Incarnation," because God has specially appointed you to bear the messages concerning the God-Man to Daniel, Zechariah, and the Blessed Virgin Mary. Give me a tender and devoted Mother, more like your own.

I venerate you also as the "strength from God," because you are the giver of God's strength, consoler and comforter chosen to strengthen God's faithful and to teach them important truths. I ask for the grace of a special power of the will to strive for holiness of life. Steady my resolutions, renew my courage, comfort and console me in the problems, trials, and sufferings of daily living, as you consoled our Savior in His agony and Mary in her sorrows and Joseph in his trials. I put my confidence in you.

St. Gabriel, I ask you especially for this favor: (Mention your request). Through your earnest love for the Son of God-Made-Man and for His blessed Mother, I beg of you, intercede for me that my request may be granted, if it be God's holy Will.

Pray for us, St. Gabriel the Archangel. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us Pray. Almighty and ever-living God, since You chose the Archangel Gabriel from among all the Angels to announce the mystery of Your Son's Incarnation, mercifully grant that we who honor him on earth may feel the benefit of his patronage in heaven. You live and reign for ever. Amen.



Novena to St. Raphael the Archangel
Novena Dates September 21 - 29, Feast Day September 29

Holy Archangel Raphael, standing so close to the throne of God and offering Him our prayers, I venerate you as God's special Friend and Messenger. I choose you as my Patron and wish to love and obey you as young Tobiah did. I consecrate to you my body and soul,all my work, and my whole life. I want you to be my Guide and Counselor in all the dangerous and difficult problems and decisions of my life.

Remember, dearest, St. Raphael, that the grace of God preserved you with the good Angels in heaven when the proud ones were cast into hell. I entreat you, therefore, to help me in my struggle against the world, the spirit of impurity, and the devil. Defend me from all dangers and every occasion of sin. Direct me always in the way of peace, safety, and salvation. Offer my prayers to God as you offered those of Tobiah, so that through your intercession I may obtain the graces necessary for the salvation of my soul. I ask you to pray that God grant me this favor if it be His holy Will: (Mention your request).

St. Raphael, help me to love and serve my God faithfully, to die in His grace, and finally to merit to join you in seeing and praising God forever in heaven. Amen.

#PopeFrancis "To learn to see Jesus in every person bent low on the path of life, in all our brothers and sisters..." #Angelus FULL TEXT/Video

The Pope’s appeal came in his Angelus address following Mass On his visit to Cuba.
Please find below the English translation of the Pope’s Angelus Message delivered from Havana’s Revolution Square: “I thank Cardinal Jaime Ortega y Alamino, Archbishop of Havana, for his kind words, and I greet all my brother bishops, priests, religious and lay faithful. I also greet the President and all the authorities present.
We have heard in the Gospel how the disciples were afraid to question Jesus when he spoke to them about his passion and death. He frightened them, and they could not grasp the idea of seeing Jesus suffer on the cross. We too are tempted to flee from our own crosses and those of others, to withdraw from those who suffer. In concluding this Holy Mass, in which Jesus has once more given himself to us in his body and blood, let us now lift our gaze to the Virgin Mary, our Mother. We ask her to teach us to stand beside the cross of our brothers and sisters who suffer. To learn to see Jesus in every person bent low on the path of life, in all our brothers and sisters who hunger or thirst, who are naked or in prison or sick. With Mary our Mother, on the cross we can see who is truly “the greatest” and what it means to stand beside the Lord and to share in his glory.
Let us learn from Mary to keep our hearts awake and attentive to the needs of others. As the wedding feast of Cana teaches us, let us be concerned for the little details of life, and let us not tire of praying for one another, so that no one will lack the new wine of love, the joy which Jesus brings us.
At this time I feel bound to direct my thoughts to the beloved land of Colombia, “conscious of the crucial importance of the present moment when, with renewed effort and inspired by hope, its sons and daughters are seeking to build a peaceful society”. May the blood shed by thousands of innocent people during long decades of armed conflict, united to that of the Lord Jesus Christ crucified, sustain all the efforts being made, including those on this beautiful island, to achieve definitive reconciliation. Thus may the long night of pain and violence can, with the support of all Colombians, become an unending day of concord, justice, fraternity and love, in respect for institutions and for national and international law, so that there may be lasting peace. Please, we do not have the right to allow ourselves yet another failure on this path of peace and reconciliation.
I ask you now to join with me in praying to Mary, that we may place all our concerns and hopes before the heart of Christ. We pray to her in a special way for those who have lost hope and find no reasons to keep fighting, and for those who suffer from injustice, abandonment and loneliness. We pray for the elderly, the infirm, children and young people, for all families experiencing difficulty, that Mary may dry their tears, comfort them with a mother’s love, and restore their hope and joy. Holy Mother, I commend to you these your sons and daughters in Cuba. May you never abandon them!”

#PopeFrancis in #Cuba "Service always looks to their faces, touches their flesh, senses their closeness and even, in some cases, “suffers” Homily FULL TEXT/Video

Pope Francis celebrated the Sunday Mass in Havana's Plaza de la Revolución. The Pope greeted on the way, several young people with disabilites. Below please find the full text of Pope Francis’ prepared homily for the Holy Mass:
Holy Mass, Havana, Plaza de la Revolución
Sunday, 20 September 2015
The Gospel shows us Jesus asking a seemingly indiscreet question of his disciples: “What were you discussing along the way?” It is a question which he could also ask each of us today: “What do you talk about every day?” “What are your aspirations?” The Gospel tells us that the disciples “did not answer because on the way they had been arguing about who was the most important”. The disciples were ashamed to tell Jesus what they were talking about. As with the disciples then, we too can be caught up in these same arguments: who is the most important? Jesus does not press the question. He does not force them to tell him what they were talking about on the way. But the question lingers, not only in the minds of the disciples, but also in their hearts.
Who is the most important? This is a life-long question to which, at different times, we must give an answer. We cannot escape the question; it is written on our hearts. I remember more than once, at family gatherings, children being asked: “Who do you love more, Mommy or Daddy”? It’s like asking them: “Who is the most important for you?” But is this only a game we play with children? The history of humanity has been marked by the answer we give to this question.
Jesus is not afraid of people’s questions; he is not afraid of our humanity or the different things we are looking for. On the contrary, he knows the “twists and turns” of the human heart, and, as a good teacher, he is always ready to encourage and support us. As usual, he takes up our searching, our aspirations, and he gives them a new horizon. As usual, he somehow finds an the answer which can pose a new challenge, setting aside the “right answers”, the standard replies we are expected to give. As usual, Jesus sets before us the “logic” of love. A mindset, an approach to life, which is capable of being lived out by all, because it is meant for all. Far from any kind of elitism, the horizon to which Jesus points us is not for those few privileged souls capable of attaining the heights of knowledge or different levels of spirituality. The horizon to which Jesus points us always has to do with daily life, also here on “our island”, something which can season our daily lives with eternity. Who is the most important? Jesus is straightforward in his reply: “Whoever wishes to be the first among you must be the last of all, and the servant of all”. Whoever wishes to be great must serve others, not be served by others. Here lies the great paradox of Jesus. The disciples were arguing about who would have the highest place, who would be chosen for privileges, who would be above the common law, the general norm, in order to stand out in the quest for superiority over others. Who would climb the ladder most quickly to take the jobs which carry certain benefits.
Jesus upsets their “logic”, their mindset, simply by telling them that life is lived authentically in a concrete commitment to our neighbor. The call to serve involves something special, to which we must be attentive. Serving others chiefly means caring for their vulnerability. Caring for the vulnerable of our families, our society, our people. Theirs are the suffering, fragile and downcast faces which Jesus tells us specifically to look at and which he asks us to love. With a love which takes shape in our actions and decisions. With a love which finds expression in whatever tasks we, as citizens, are called to perform. People of flesh and blood, people with individual lives and stories, and with all their frailty: these are those whom Jesus asks us to protect, to care for, to serve. Being a Christian entails promoting the dignity of our brothers and sisters, fighting for it, living for it. That is why Christians are constantly called to set aside their own wishes and desires, their pursuit of power, and to look instead to those who are most vulnerable.
There is a kind of “service” which truly “serves”, yet we need to be careful not to be tempted by another kind of service, a “service” which is “self-serving”. There is a way to go about serving which is interested in only helping “my people”, “our people”. This service always leaves “your people” outside, and gives rise to a process of exclusion.
All of us are called by virtue of our Christian vocation to that service which truly serves, and to help one another not to be tempted by a “service” which is really “self-serving”. All of us are asked, indeed urged, by Jesus to care for one another out of love. Without looking to one side or the other to see what our neighbor is doing or not doing. Jesus tells us: Whoever would be first among you must be the last, and the servant of all”. He does not say: if your neighbor wants to be first, let him be the servant! We have to be careful to avoid judgmental looks and renew our belief in the transforming look to which Jesus invites us.
This caring for others out of love is not about being servile. Rather, it means putting our brothers and sisters at the center. Service always looks to their faces, touches their flesh, senses their closeness and even, in some cases, “suffers” in trying to help. Service is never ideological, for we do not serve ideas, we serve people.
God’s holy and faithful people in Cuba is a people with a taste for parties, for friendship, for beautiful things. It is a people which marches with songs of praise. It is a people which has its wounds, like every other people, yet knows how to stand up with open arms, to keep walking in hope, because it has a vocation of grandeur. Today I ask you to care for this vocation of yours, to care for these gifts which God has given you, but above all I invite you to care for and be at the service of the frailty of your brothers and sisters. Do not neglect them for plans which can be seductive, but are unconcerned about the face of the person beside you. We know, we are witnesses of the incomparable power of the resurrection, which “everywhere calls forth the seeds of a new world” (cf. Evangelii Gaudium, 276, 278). Let us not forget the Good News we have heard today: the importance of a people, a nation, and the importance of individuals, which is always based on how they seek to serve their vulnerable brothers and sisters. Here we encounter one of the fruits of a true humanity. “Whoever does not live to serve, does not ‘serve’ to live”. (Devin Sean Watkins)

Sunday Mass Online : Sun. September 20, 2015 - 25 in Ord. Time


Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 134


Reading 1WIS 2:12, 17-20

The wicked say:
Let us beset the just one, because he is obnoxious to us;
he sets himself against our doings,
reproaches us for transgressions of the law
and charges us with violations of our training.
Let us see whether his words be true;
let us find out what will happen to him.
For if the just one be the son of God, God will defend him
and deliver him from the hand of his foes.
With revilement and torture let us put the just one to the test
that we may have proof of his gentleness
and try his patience.
Let us condemn him to a shameful death;
for according to his own words, God will take care of him.

Responsorial PsalmPS 54:3-4, 5, 6 AND 8

R. (6b) The Lord upholds my life.
O God, by your name save me,
and by your might defend my cause.
O God, hear my prayer;
hearken to the words of my mouth.
R. The Lord upholds my life.
For the haughty men have risen up against me,
the ruthless seek my life;
they set not God before their eyes.
R. The Lord upholds my life.
Behold, God is my helper;
the Lord sustains my life.
Freely will I offer you sacrifice;
I will praise your name, O LORD, for its goodness.
R. The Lord upholds my life.

Reading 2JAS 3:16—4:3

Beloved:
Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist,
there is disorder and every foul practice.
But the wisdom from above is first of all pure,
then peaceable, gentle, compliant,
full of mercy and good fruits,
without inconstancy or insincerity.
And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace
for those who cultivate peace.

Where do the wars
and where do the conflicts among you come from?
Is it not from your passions
that make war within your members?
You covet but do not possess.
You kill and envy but you cannot obtain;
you fight and wage war.
You do not possess because you do not ask.
You ask but do not receive,
because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.

AlleluiaCF. 2 THESS 2:14

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
God has called us through the Gospel
to possess the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 9:30-37

Jesus and his disciples left from there and began a journey through Galilee,
but he did not wish anyone to know about it.
He was teaching his disciples and telling them,
“The Son of Man is to be handed over to men
and they will kill him,
and three days after his death the Son of Man will rise.”
But they did not understand the saying,
and they were afraid to question him.

They came to Capernaum and, once inside the house,
he began to ask them,
“What were you arguing about on the way?”
But they remained silent.
They had been discussing among themselves on the way
who was the greatest.
Then he sat down, called the Twelve, and said to them,
“If anyone wishes to be first,
he shall be the last of all and the servant of all.”
Taking a child, he placed it in the their midst,
and putting his arms around it, he said to them,
“Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me;
and whoever receives me,
receives not me but the One who sent me.”

Saint September 20 : St. Andrew Kim Taegon and Companions : #Martyrs : Patron of #Korean #Clergy


St. Andrew Kim Taegon
MARTYR
Feast: September 20
Information:
Feast Day:
September 20
Born:
August 21, 1821
Died:
September 16, 1846
Canonized:
6 May 1984 by Pope John Paul II
Major Shrine:
Chŏltusan (Martyr's Mound), Seoul, South Korea
Patron of:
Korean Clergy

Andrew Kim Tae-gon was born on 21 August 1821, in Chungchong Province, Korea. His parents, being converts to Catholicism, were subject to persecution, to avoid which they moved to Kyonggi Province. At 15 years old, Kim Tae-gon was chosen by a visiting priest to be a seminarian, and was sent with two other seminarians to Macao. He arrived in 1873 and began his studies with the missionaries of the Far Eastern Procure of the Parish Foreign Mission Society. In 1842 Kim Tae-gon left Macao as an interpreter for a French admiral aboard a warship. When the admiral returned to France, Kim Tae-gon tried to return to his homeland through the strictly guarded norther frontier, but he failed. He was ordained a deacon in China in 1844 and managed to return to Korea the next year, arriving in Seoul early in 1845. He then led the French missionaries by sea to Shanghai, where Bishop Ferreol ordained him the first Korean priest in the Church’s 60-year history in Korea. He returned to Korea with Bishop Ferreol, reaching Chungchong Province in October of the same year. In his home town and vicinity, he catechized the faithful, until Bishop Ferreol summoned him to Seoul. At the Bishop's command, he tried to introduce French missionaries from China into Korea, enlisting the aid of Chinese fishermen. For this, Father Kim Tae-gon was arrested and sent to the central prison in Seoul, where was charged as the ringleader of a heretical sect and traitor to his country. He was sentenced to death and was beheaded on 16 September 1846. He was beatified by Pope Pius XI in 1925, and canonized by Pope John-Paul II on 6 May 1984.
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