Today Christians Celebrate the Feast of “Good King” Saint Wenceslaus, Martyr for Christ

Saint Wenceslaus

Saint Wenceslaus (907-929)
Image: Pinterest

(EWTN) Born in Prague Bohemia what is today the Czech Republic, Wenceslaus was the son of Duke Wratislaw a Christian and Dragomir a wicked heathen according to Catholic Encyclopedia — Wenceslaus received a good Christian education from his Grandmother Saint Ludmilla (Feast Day: 18 September)

Following the death of his father (Duke Wratislaw) Dragomir, acting as regent, opposed Christianity — Wenceslaus was urged by the people to take the reigns of government, he would place his Duchy, under the protection of Germany and introduced German Priests.

Wenceslaus took the vow of chastity and became known and respected for his virtues. — Emperor Otto I conferred on him the regal dignity and title.

For religious and national motives and at the instigation of his evil mother Dragomir, Wenceslaus was murdered by his brother Boleslaw at the door of the Church according to SQPN and buried there. 

Emperor Otto responded to Wenceslaus death by invading Bohemia according to Catholic News Agency and engaging in battle for several years conquering the region. Otto I forced Boleslaw (some write Boleslaus) to reverse the anti-Christian measures that he and his evil mother Dragomir had taken.

There is no evidence that Dragomir who died soon after the murder of Wenceslaus ever repented for the murder of her son. Boleslaw however came to regret his wicked deed of murdering his own brother (and repented) when he learned of miracles that were taking place where Wenceslaus was buried.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI on this date in 2009 in the Czech Republic during his homily said: “This is the lesson we can learn from Saint Wenceslaus, who had the courage to prefer the Kingdom of Heaven to the enticement of world power. His gaze never moved away from Jesus Christ who suffered for us, leaving us an example that we should follow in His steps…As an obedient disciple of the Lord, the young Prince Wenceslaus, remained faithful to the Gospel teachings he had learned from his Grandmother Saint Ludmilla — In observing these, even before committing himself to build peaceful relations within his lands and with neighboring countries, he took steps to spread the Christian faith, summoning Priests and building Churches…he was benevolent to the poor, clothed the naked, gave food to the hungry, welcomed Pilgrims just as the Gospel enjoins. He (Wenceslaus) did not allow injustice to be done to widows, he loved all people whether rich or poor. — He learned from the Lord to be merciful and gracious…”

Saint Wenceslaus is the subject of the well known favorite Christmas Carol ‘Good King Wenceslaus’ written  in 1853 by English Hymnwriter John Mason Neale in collaboration with music editor Thomas Helmore.

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Today Christians Celebrate the Feast of St. Thomas of Villanova — Father of the Poor

St Thomas of VillanovaSt. Thomas of Villanova (1488-1555) Image Courtesy: Catholic Fire

(Franciscan Media) Thomas was born at Spain Fuentellana in the Kingdom of Castile and was reared on the practices of Christianity and charity according to EWTN — Every Friday, Thomas’ father (Alazo Tomas Garcia) would give to charity all that he had earned at the mill besides his daily ration of bread however on ‘Great Feast Day’s’ he would add wood, wine and money while to poor farmers, he’d loan them money and seed.

Upon Alazo’s death, Thomas’s mother (Lucia) continued the practice that her late husband had started, together with supplying indigent Maidens in the neighborhood with clothing and money.

When 16 year old Thomas entered the Univ of Alcala, after completing his studies and earning a Masters of Arts and Theology degrees, he became a popular teacher there.

In 1516 Thomas joined the Augustinian Friars, taking his vows a year later and was Ordained a Priest the following year–his first Mass Celebrated as a Priest was on Christmas Day 1518

Fr. Thomas would resume his teaching of Theology at Salamanca Convent, preaching at Churches in Spain was soon added to his duties. Fr. Thomas was later nominated by the Emperor to be Archbishop of  Granada but refused. When the See became vacant again he was pressured to accept.

The money the Cathedral Chapter offered to Bishop Thomas to furnish his house was instead donated to a hospital with his explanation:

“Our Lord will be better served by your money being spent on the poor in the hospital. What does a poor Friar like myself want with furniture?”

Bishop Thomas wore the same Habit he had received in the Novitate, mending it himself, his Servants and Domestic help were ashamed of him but couldn’t convince him to change. — Each day, several hundred poor people would come to Archbishop Thomas’s door, receiving a free meal, wine and money. — When Archbishop Thomas was criticized that people were taking advantage of him he replied:

“If there are people that refuse to work, that is for the Governor and the Police to deal with. My duty is to assist and relieve those who come to my door.”

Bishop Thomas would take-in Orphans and paid his Servants for every deserted child they brought to him. — Bishop Thomas encouraged the wealthy to mirror his example, in order to be richer in mercy in charity, than they were in earthly possessions.

Criticized for not being more strict with transgressors, Bishop Thomas said:

“Let him (the Complainer) inquire whether Saint Augustine or Saint John Chrysostom used anathemas (censure) or excommunication to stop the drunkenness and blasphemy which was so common among the people under their care?”

During Bishop Thomas’ final days, he commanded that all of the money he possessed be distributed to the poor, his material goods were to be given to the rector of his Alma mater. — As Mass was being celebrated in Bishop Thomas’s honor, he breathed his last, reciting the words of Jesus:

“Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.” —Psalm 31:5

Bishop Thomas in his lifetime was called the ‘Almsgiver’ and the ‘Father of the Poor’ — He was Beatified in 1618 by Pope Paul V and Canonized in 1658 by Pope Alexander VII

More here from American Catholic

An Inspiration Of Time With God For Today

Let the peace of Christ control your hearts, the peace in which you were also called in one body and be thankful. Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly, as in all wisdom you teach and admonish one another, singing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.  Colossians 3:15-16
Image Courtesy: Archbishop Jose Gomez

Related: For Today’s Bible Readings and More Visit: -USCCB

Christmas Day, Christians Celebrate the Solemnity of the Nativity

Nativity PictureSolemnity of the Nativity –Image: St Athanasius Church Norwich, UK

(American Catholic) On Christmas Day, the Church focuses especially on the new born Child Jesus, God became human, who embodies for us all the hope and peace we seek. We need no other Special Saint to lead us to Christ in the manger, although His Mother Mary and Joseph caring for his foster Son, help round out the scene.

If we were to select a Patron Saint, perhaps it might be appropriate for us to imagine an anonymous shepherd, summoned to the birthplace by a wondrous and even disturbing a vision in the night–a summons from an angelic choir, promising peace and goodwill. A shepherd willing to seek out something that might be just too unbelievable to chase after and yet compelling enough to leave behind their flocks in the field and search for the mystery.

On the day of our Lord’s birth, let an ‘uncelebrity’ at the edge of the crowd, model for us the way to discover Christ in our own hearts–somewhere between skepticism, wonder, between mystery and faith. Like Mary and the Shepherds, let us treasure that discovery in our hearts.

Related: Solemnity of the Nativity –USCCB

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“One Cannot Place a Value on Any Person’s Life, Their Impact is Infinite.”
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An Inspiration Of Time With God For Today

“Do not be afraid, for see — I am bringing you news of great joy for all the people. To you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.”  Luke 2:10-11
Image: Archbishop Jose Gomez

The Birth of Jesus

In those days a decree went out from the Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was Governor of Syria, all went to their own towns to be registered.

Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the City of David called Bethlehem because he was descended from the House and Family of David, he went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and was expecting a Child. While they were there, the time came for her (Blessed Virgin Mary) to deliver her Child and she gave birth to her firstborn Son and wrapped him in bands of cloth and laid Him in a manger because there was no place for them in the Inn.

The Shepherds and the Angels

In that region there were Shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an Angel of the Lord stood before them and the Glory of the Lord shone around them and they were terrified but the Angel said to them:

“Do not be afraid, for see — I am bringing you Good News of Great Joy for all the people: To you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign for you: You will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly there was with the Angel a multitude of the Heavenly Host, praising God and saying:

“Glory to God in the Highest Heaven and on earth, peace among those whom He favors.”

When the Angels had left them and gone into Heaven, the Shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.”

So they went with haste and found Mary, Joseph and the Child (Jesus) lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about the Child and all who heard it were amazed at what the Shepherds told them but Mary, treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart.

The Shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for they had heard and seen as it had been told them. Luke 2:1-20

An Inspiration Of Time With God For Today

“Behold, a Virgin Shall Conceive and Bear a Son and His Name Shall be Called Emmanuel” (Which Means: God With Us) Matthew 1:23  Image Courtesy: Archbishop Jose Gomez

The Birth of Jesus The Messiah

Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place this way. When His Mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with Child of the Holy Spirit and her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to send her away quietly but as he considered this, behold an Angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream saying: “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit, she will bear a Son and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”

All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the Prophet:

“Behold a Virgin shall Conceive and Bear a Son and His name shall be called Emmanuel” (Which means: God With Us) –Isaiah 7:14

When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the Angel of the Lord commanded him, he took his wife but knew her not until she had borne a Son and he called His name Jesus. Matthew 1:18-25

Related: For Today’s Bible Readings and More Visit: -USCCB

Mommy, I Want a St. Joan of Arc Doll — Makes a Great Christmas Gift


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