Archive for the ‘December 3’ Category

Feast of Venerable Jan Franciszek Macha (December 3)   Leave a comment

Above:  Venerable Jan Franciszek Macha

Image in the Public Domain

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VENERABLE JAN FRANCISZEK MACHA (JANUARY 18, 1914-DECEMBER 3, 1942)

Polish Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1942

Alternative feast day = June 12 (Polish Martyrs of World War II)

Venerable Jan Franciszek Macha comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via the Roman Catholic Church.

Macha, born a Russian subject, grew up in independent Poland.  He debuted in what is now Chozrów, Poland, on January 18, 1914.  Our saint was one of four children of Pawel Macha and Anna Cofalka.  Young Jan grew up in a devout household.  He, having perceived his vocation to the priesthood, applied to the Silesian Theological College in 1933.  That application failed, so our saint briefly studied law.  However, the second application, in 1934, succeeded.  Macha joined the Sacred Order of Deacons on May 1, 1938, then became a priest on June 25, 1939.

Europe was descending into World War II, and Macha understood that his life and priesthood would be brief.  They were holy, however.  Our saint, assigned to St. Josef Parish, Ruda Slaska, in the summer of 1939, ministered to his flock faithfully under wartime conditions.  German forces invaded Poland on September 1, 1939.  Merely being a Roman Catholic priest was sufficient to receive a death sentence from Nazi officials.  Macha tended to his congregation spiritually and raised funds to help the poor.  He did this until his arrest by agents of the Gestapo, at Katowice, on September 5, 1941.

Macha spent the rest of his short life as a prisoner of the Third Reich.  Nazi officials interrogated, abused, and humiliated him.  They moved Macha from prison to prison.  Our saint prayed for God to forgive them.  Macha, sentenced to death on July 17, 1942, went to the guillotine, at Katowice, shortly after Midnight on December 3, 1942.  He was 28 years old.  Prison authorities refused requests for a proper burial.

Holy Mother Church has formally recognized Macha.  Pope Francis declared him a Venerable in 2019.  The Vatican has approved our saint for advancement to the status of beatus.  However, the COVID-19 pandemic has postponed that ceremony.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 2, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF GEORG WEISSEL, GERMAN LUTHERAN PASTOR AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF ANNA BERNADINE DOROTHY HOPPE, U.S. LUTHERAN HYMN WRITER AND TRANSLATOR

THE FEAST OF CHRISTIAN GOTTFRIED GEBHARD, GERMAN MORAVIAN COMPOSER AND MUSIC EDUCATOR

THE FEAST OF FREDERICK WILLIAM FOSTER, ENGLISH MORAVIAN BISHOP, LITURGIST, HYMN WRITER, AND HYMN TRANSLATOR

THE FEAST OF PETER JULIAN EYMARD, FOUNDER OF THE PRIESTS OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT, THE SERVANTS OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT, AND THE PRIESTS’ EUCHARISTIC LEAGUE; AND ORGANIZER OF THE CONFRATERNITY OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT

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Almighty and everlasting God,

who kindled the flame of your love in the heart of your holy martyr,

Venerable Jan Franciszek Macha;

Grant to us, your humble servants, a like faith and power of love,

that we who rejoice in his triumph may profit by his example;

through Jesus Christ our Lord,

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Jeremiah 15:15-21

Psalm 124 or 31:1-5

1 Peter 4:12-19

Mark 8:34-38

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 715

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Feast of M. Woolsey Stryker (December 3)   Leave a comment

Above:  Melancthon Woolsey Stryker

Image in the Public Domain

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MELANCTHON WOOLSEY STRYKER (JANUARY 7, 1851-DECEMBER 6, 1929)

U.S. Presbyterian Minister, Educator, Author, Hymnal Editor, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Translator

The Reverend Doctor Melancthon Woolsey Stryker, sometimes listed in life as M. Woolsey Stryker, comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Our saint was a child of Alida Livingston Woolsey Stryker and the Reverend Isaac Pierson Stryker (b. 1815), a Presbyterian minister in Vernon, New York (1847-1852).  The newest Stryker, born in Vernon, New York, on January 7, 1851, imbibed deeply of faith and intellect.  Our saint graduated from Hamilton College, Clinton, New York (founded by a Presbyterian minister in 1793), in 1872.  Four years later, Stryker graduated from Auburn Theological Seminary and became a Presbyterian minister.

Stryker married Clara Elizabeth Goss (1856-1936) of Auburn, New York, on September 27, 1876.  The couple had six children:

  1. Goss Livingston Stryker (1877-1971),
  2. Alida Stryker Root (1881-1951),
  3. Robert McBurney Stryker (1883-1955),
  4. Lloyd Paul Stryker (1885-1955),
  5. Evelyn Stryker (1888-1976), and
  6. Elizabeth Woolsey Stryker (b. 1896).

Stryker ministered in Congregations from 1876 to 1892.  He started at Calvary Presbyterian Church, Auburn, New York (1876-1878).  Next, our saint served at a Presbyterian church in Ithaca, New York (1878-1883).  A brief tenure (1883-1885) at Second Congregational Church, Holyoke, Massachusetts, followed.  Then Stryker was the pastor of Fourth Presbyterian Church, Chicago, Illinois (1885-1892).

Above:  Hamilton College, Clinton, New York, 1913

Image Source = Library of Congress

Copyright Claimaint = Haines Photo Company

Stryker served as the President of Hamilton College from 1892 to 1917.  He, relatively liberal, by the standards of his era, staunchly defended classical education, firmly opposed anti-Semitism, spared no words in condemning corruption in public offices, and stood with the organized labor movement.  Yet Stryker was, according to some of his own words, uttered in public and committed to printing presses, racist, xenophobic, Nativistic, and ethnocentric.  (I read some primary sources at archive.org.)  He was simultaneously of his time and ahead of it.

Stryker, in the context of the unfolding troubles facing fellow Presbyterian minister and academic Charles Augustus Briggs (1841-1913), understood that denominational politics could threaten the academic integrity of a college.  Therefore, our saint, upon becoming the President of Hamilton College, immediately asserted the independence of that institution from ecclesiastical control.  Briggs, marginalized within the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A., eventually found safe harbor in The Episcopal Church.  However, Stryker remained within the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A..  He, unlike Briggs, lived long enough to witness the Modernist faction triumph in the Modernist-Fundamentalist controversy in that denomination.

Stryker was a student of hymnody, as well as a writer and translator of hymns.  He translated the Dies Irae and wrote an analysis of the text.  Our saint’s translation of Martin Luther‘s great hymn, Ein Feste Burg, as “A Tower of Safety is Our God,” has fallen into obscurity.  An original hymn, “Almighty Lord, with One Accord” (1896), became a commencement hymn at many Christian colleges.  Stryker also produced or helped to produce the following volumes related to hymnody:

  1. The Alleluia:  A Collection of Hymns and Tunes for the Church School, and the Mid-Week Meeting (1880), as co-editor;
  2. The Church Praise Book:  A Selection of Hymns and Tunes for Christian Worship (1881), as co-editor;
  3. Christian Chorals for the Chapel and Fireside (1885), as editor;
  4. The New Alleluia:  A Collection of Hymns and Tunes for the Church School, and the Mid-Week Meeting (1886), as co-editor;
  5. The Song of Miriam and Other Hymns and Verses, Translated and Original (1888);
  6. Church Song:  For the Uses of The House of God (1889), as editor;
  7. Lattermath:  Hymns and Verses, Translated and Original (1896);
  8. The College Hymnal (1897, 1904), as editor;
  9. The Psalms of Israel in Rhymed English Metre (1915); and
  10. Christian Praise (1923), as editor.

Hymnary.org lists 80 hymn texts, translated and original, for Stryker.  Some of these titles are duplicates, but the volume of his output remains impressive.

Other published works of Stryker included volumes of history, speeches, sermons, and poetry, as well as a college textbook about the English Bible.  These works included the following:

  1. Historical Sketch of the Missions in Mexico Under the Board of Foreign Missions of the Presbyterian Church (1881);
  2. Hamilton, Lincoln, and Other Addresses (1896);
  3. The Well by the Gate (1903);
  4. Baccalaureate Sermons:  President M. Woolsey Stryker to the Graduating Classes of Hamilton College, 1893-1905 (1905);
  5. An Outline Study of the History of the Bible in English, with a Brief Essay Upon Its Quality as Literature (1914);
  6. Abraham Lincoln (1917);
  7. Faculae Annorum (1917);
  8. Vesper Bells (1919);
  9. Lincoln’s Land and Other Recent Verses (1921); and
  10. Ethics in Outline (1923).

Stryker, who received honorary degrees, retired from the presidency of Hamilton College in 1917.  He remained in Clinton, New York, where he died on December 6, 1929.  Our saint was 78 years old.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 1, 2021 COMMON ERA

PROPER 13:  THE TENTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST, YEAR B

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOSEPH OF ARIMATHEA, DISCIPLE OF JESUS

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Melancthon Woolsey Stryker)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Feast of Sophie Koulomzin (December 3)   2 comments

Above:  Russian Orthodox Cross

Image in the Public Domain

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SOPHIE SCHIDLOVSKY KOULOMZIN (DECEMBER 3, 1903-SEPTEMBER 29, 2000)

Russian-American Orthodox Christian Educator

Sophie Koulomzin served God most effectively in Christian education.

Our saint, born Sophie Schidlovsky in St. Petersburg, Russian Empire, on December 3, 1903, knew the life of a Russian elite and the life of struggling émigré.  Her father, Sergei Schidlovsky, was the last vice president of the old Duma.  The Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 forced the family to flee, ultimately to Paris.  Sophie studied (on scholarships) at the University of Berlin then at Columbia University, New York, New York, from which she earned her M.A. in Religious Education in 1926.  She became the first woman from the Eastern Orthodox tradition to earn that degree there.

Our saint, back in Paris, put her degree to work.  She taught émigré children and edited My First Book about the Orthodox Faith and My Second Book about the Orthodox Faith.  She also worked with St. Maria Skobtsova (1891-1945), a nun who sheltered Jews during the German occupation and died for doing so.

Sophie Schidlovsky became Sophie Koulomzin in 1932, when she married engineer Nikita Koulomzin.  The couple had three daughters and one nun.

The family resided in the United States, starting in 1949, when they settled in Nyack, New York.  Sophie taught in her parish and joined the Metropolitan Council Church School Committee.  She encouraged Orthodox jurisdictions in the United States to cooperate and to conduct Christian education of the young in English–to leave the Old World psychologically and emotionally.  In 1957 she helped to create the ecumenical Orthodox Christian Education Commission, in which she was prominent.

NOTE:  I have read histories of immigrant, minority denominations–Lutheran and Reformed, mainly–in the United States.  Regardless of the denomination, some patterns have been consistent.  The denominations have, most strongly at first, functioned as means of preserving a culture and handing it down from one generation to the next.  This has restricted the appeal of the denomination to a particular ethnicity for a long time.  Meanwhile, cultural and linguistic transitions have occurred as the first-generation immigrants have died and the generations born in the United States have begun to assimilate.  This transition has been psychologically difficult for many of those who left the Old World only physically.  During these long transitions these immigrant denominations have lost many younger, culturally-assimilated members.  As English has become the dominant or only language in a particular denomination, mergers have occurred.

I have a mixed opinion about this.  I do not consider myself ethnic; I descend mainly from Anglo-Saxons who moved to North America in the 1600s.  I have a sprinkling of other cultures–French (Huguenot, to be precise), German, and Cherokee, for example–in my family tree.  Furthermore, people stop me occasionally and ask if I am Greek or Italian.  As I was writing, I do not consider myself ethnic, especially in the United States.  However, I like many of the old Danish and Swedish Lutheran hymns that have fallen out of favor with Lutheran hymnal committees since cultural assimilation and denominational mergers.  Different cultures add to the collective life of the United States; variety is indeed the spice of life.  Members of different cultures can learn much from each other.

Koulomzin taught future priests and bishops at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, Yonkers, New York, form 1956 to 1970, when she retired.  The seminary awarded her an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree as she entered retirement.

In the 1990s our saint was active in efforts related to the Christian education of children in the former Soviet Union, as the Russian Orthodox Church emerged from decades of persecution.  Patriarch of Moscow Alexis II awarded her the Order of Saint Olga in 1999.

Koulomzin, a member of what became the Orthodox Church in America in 1970, lived to the age of 96 years.  She died on September 29, 2000.

Christian education is one of the elements of parish life that many adherents take lightly, unfortunately.  The life and work of Sophie Koulomzin should remind us of the importance of Christian education–certainly, for children, but also for adults.

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Loving God, in whom we find the path to salvation and shalom,

we thank you for the life and work of Sophie Koulomzin in Christian education.

May we take Christian education seriously, deepen our faith, and lead others on the right paths,

for your glory and the common good.  In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Nehemiah 8:1-12

Psalm 119:105-112

Acts 8:26-40

Matthew 13:1-17

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 23, 2019 COMMON ERA

PROPER 7:  THE SECOND SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST, YEAR C

THE FEAST OF JOHN JOHNS, PRESBYTERIAN MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF HEINRICH GOTTLOB GUTTER, GERMAN-AMERICAN INSTRUMENT MAKER, REPAIRMAN, AND MERCHANT

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICETAS OF REMESIANA, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF WILHELM HEINRICH WAUER, GERMAN MORAVIAN COMPOSER AND MUSICIAN

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Holiday Busyness   2 comments

Above:  A Domestic Scene, December 8, 2018

Photographer = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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On my bed when I think of you,

I muse on you in the watches of the night,

for you have always been my help;

in the shadow of your wings I rejoice;

my heart clings to you,

your right hand supports me.

–Psalm 63:6-8, The New Jerusalem Bible (1985)

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In my U.S. culture, the time from Thanksgiving (late November) to New Year’s Day is quite busy.  Holidays populate the calendar.  Some of these holidays are, for lack of a better word, ecumenical.  Others are religiously and/or culturally specific, though.  Christmas, originally the Christ Mass, has become an occasion, for many, to worship the Almighty Dollar at the high altar of commercialism.  This is how many Evangelicals of the Victorian Era wanted matters to be.

On the relatively innocuous side, this is the time of the year to populate one’s calendar with holiday social events, such as parties, school plays, and seasonal concerts.  Parents often like to attend their children’s events, appropriately.  Holiday concerts by choral and/or instrumental ensembles can also be quite pleasant.

Yet, amid all this busyness (sometimes distinct from business), are we neglecting the innate human need for peace and quiet?  I like classical Advent and Christmas music, especially at this time of the year (all the way through January 5, the twelfth day of Christmas), but I have to turn it off eventually.  Silence also appeals to me.  Furthermore, being busy accomplishing a worthy goal is rewarding, but so is simply being.

The real question is one of balance.  Given the absence of an actual distinction between the spiritual and the physical, everything is spiritual.  If we are too busy for God, silence, and proper inactivity, we are too busy.  If we are too busy to listen to God, we are too busy.  If we are too busy or too idle, we are not our best selves.

May we, by grace, strike and maintain the proper balance.  May we, especially at peak periods of activity, such as the end of the year, not overextend ourselves, especially in time commitments.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 14, 2018 COMMON ERA

THE THIRTEENTH DAY OF ADVENT, YEAR C

THE FEAST OF SAINT VENANTIUS HONORIUS CLEMENTIUS FORTUNATUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF POITIERS

THE FEAST OF DOROTHY ANN THRUPP, ENGLISH HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN OF THE CROSS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MYSTIC

THE FEAST OF ROBERT MCDONALD, ANGLICAN PRIEST AND MISSIONARY

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Published originally at BLOGA THEOLOGICA

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Feast of Archibald Campbell Tait (December 3)   3 comments

archibald-campbell-tait

Above:  Archibald Campbell Tait

Image in the Public Domain

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ARCHIBALD CAMPBELL TAIT (DECEMBER 21, 1811-DECEMBER 3, 1882)

Archbishop of Canterbury

Archibald Campbell Tait, a Broad Churchman, occupied the middle ground in an ongoing dispute between the Evangelical and Anglo-Catholic wings of The Church of England.

Tait, born at Edinburgh, Scotland, on December 21, 1811, was a son of Craufurd Tait (1777-1832) and Susan Campbell (1777-1814)  He grew up a Presbyterian, but felt drawn to the Scottish Episcopal Church.  Our saint studied at Edinburgh High School; Edinburgh Academy; Glasgow University; and Baillol College, Oxford.  At Oxford he converted to The Church of England.  Our saint was 19 years old.  He remained associated with Baillol College until 1842, serving as a tutor from 1835 to 1842.  Tait had become an Anglican deacon and curate in 1836 and a priest two years later.

Tait left Oxford for Rugby School.  In 1842 he succeeded Thomas Arnold as headmaster.  The following year our saint married Catherine Spooner (1819-1878).  He had the misfortune of burying her and all their children.

Tait’s ascent into the Anglican hierarchy continued.  From 1849 to 1856 he was the Dean of Carlisle Cathedral.  Next our saint served as the Bishop of London (1856-1868), due to an appeal by Queen Victoria.  He was already upsetting members of both the Evangelical and Anglo-Catholic wings of The Church of England by being a Broad Churchman.  Of course, had Tait been an Evangelical Anglican, he would have antagonized many Anglo-Catholics anyway.  Likewise, if he had been an Anglo-Catholic, our saint would have upset many Evangelicals anyway.  What was the man supposed to do and be?  He was just not going to satisfy some people.  As the Bishop of London Tait performed the job well; he founded churches and provided more clergymen to those congregations in need of them.

From 1868 to 1882 Tait served as the Archbishop of Canterbury.  Although he initially opposed the disestablishment of The Church of Ireland, he accepted it as being inevitable after Queen Victoria spoke to him.  Tait also secured the best possible deal for The Church of Ireland.  He also attempted unsuccessfully to have the unwieldy Athanasian Creed removed from the services of The Church of England.  Our saint, as part of an attempt to create peace in The Church of England by writing the first draft of the Public Worship Regulation Act (1874), which emerged from the Parliament in an altered, more Protestant, and stricter form, to which he objected.  The law, in its final form, created ecclesiastical courts for priests accused of practicing ritualism and led to the imprisonment of four priests, starting in 1877 and ending in 1882.  However, Tait secured veto powers and worked to render the law obsolete.  Backlash against the Act completed the process of rendering it obsolete.

Tait died at December 3, 1882, at Addington, Surrey, England.  He was 70 years old.  He had labored to bring peace to The Church of England, a denomination with three distinct branches.  His efforts proved the truth of the statement that for every action there is an equal and opposite criticism.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 6, 2016 COMMON ERA

ALL SAINTS’ SUNDAY

THE FEAST OF CHRISTIAN GREGOR, FATHER OF MORAVIAN CHURCH MUSIC

THE FEAST OF GIOVANNI GABRIELI AND HANS LEO HASSLER, COMPOSERS AND ORGANISTS; AND CLAUDIO MONTEVERDI AND HEINRICH SCHUTZ, COMPOSERS AND MUSICIANS

THE FEAST OF SAINT THEOPHANE VENARD, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST, MISSIONARY, AND MARTYR IN VIETNAM

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM TEMPLE, ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY

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Almighty Father, whose blessed Son before his passion prayed for his disciples

that they might be one, as you and he are one:

Grant that your Church, being bound together in love and obedience to you,

may be united in one body by the one Spirit,

that the world may believe in him whom you have sent,

you Son Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit, now and for ever  Amen.

Isaiah 35:1-10

Psalm 122

Ephesians 4:1-6

John 17:6a, 15-23

A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  A Calendar of Commemorations (2016), page A48

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Feast of St. Francis Xavier (December 3)   5 comments

st-francis-xavier

Above:  St. Francis Xavier

Image in the Public Domain

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SAINT FRANCIS XAVIER (APRIL 7, 1506-DECEMBER 3, 1552)

Roman Catholic Missionary to the Far East

St. Francis Xavier lived for about 46 years and 8 months.  During his adult life, according to estimates, he converted about 40,000 or perhaps about 70,000 or maybe more than a million people to Christianity.  He was, as John K. Ryan, author of the article on our saint in The Encyclopedia Britannica (1962),

the greatest missionary since St. Paul.

–Volume 11, page 759

Our saint, who devoted his life to God, came from a Basque noble family.  He, born at the Castle of Xavier, Navarre, on April 7, 1506, was the youngest of three sons of Juan de Jasso y Atondo (steward of the castle) and Dona Maria de Azpilcueta y Aznarez (of Navarrese nobility).  In 1526 our saint commenced his study of philosophy at the University of Paris.  For a few years, starting in 1528, St. Ignatius Loyola was among his roommates.  After Xavier graduated in 1530 he started his theological studies and became a professor of philosophy.  Four years later Loyola, Xavier, and five other men–close associates for years and the core of what became the Society of Jesus in 1540–took vows of poverty and chastity then made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem.  In 1537, at Venice, these men became priests.  Loyola dispatched Xavier to preach to the poor of Bologna in 1538.  Later our saint became Loyola’s secretary.

King Joao (John) III (the Pious) of Portugal (reigned 1521-1557) requested that the Church send six Jesuits to the far eastern part of the Portuguese Empire.  Loyola could send only two.  Among these was our saint, who took the place of a man who had fallen ill.  On May 6, 1541, Xavier and Martin Alfonso de Sousa, the governor of Goa, sailed from Lisbon.  They spent six months (August 1541-February 1542) in Mozambique then arrived in Goa on May 6, 1542.  Xavier carried with him credentials of his new position, papal legate for the Indies.  Holy Mother Church already had missionaries from various orders active in the region.  Our saint not only built on the foundations other had laid but also laid foundations on which others built.

At first Xavier focused on the needs of colonists at Goa.  He lived in a hospital, visited prisoners, preached to the poor, and catechized children, poor free adults, and slaves.  There was much work for him to do, for immorality, such as harsh treatment of slaves, was rampant.

Then, after five months, Sousa suggested that our saint commence evangelism among the Paravan people.  Xavier accepted and followed this advice.  Through the end of 1544 Xavier helped them build up and organize their defenses and to make peace with their enemies.  He also converted many of them to Christianity.  Furthermore, in December 1544 alone, our saint baptized 10,000 in the neighboring Kingdom of Travancore and arranged for others to teach them.

Xavier, as a missionary, did not remain in one place for long.  Sometimes he was in Goa, but usually he was elsewhere.  In 1545 our saint began to evangelize in the East Indies.  He remained there until 1548, when he began to make plans to engage in missionary work in Japan.  In 1547, while at Malacca, Xavier had met Anjiro, a Japanese man interested in Christianity.  Our saint sent Anjiro and two other Japanese men to Goa for preparation for baptism.  On August 15, 1549, Xavier, two other Jesuits, Anjiro, and the two other Japanese converts arrived at the island of Kyushu.  Xavier’s mission in Japan proved successful and ended in September 1551.

Xavier, the new Jesuit Provincial for India, intended to evangelize in China, where foreigners were forbidden.  Diplomatic complications delayed our saint’s attempts to enter the empire as a missionary.  Finally Xavier made plans to go anyway.  For three months he waited on Sancian Island, near the port of Canton, for a ship to take him into China.  In November 1552 Xavier became ill.  He died on this island on December 3, 1552, aged 46 years.

Pope Paul V beatified Xavier in  1619.  Pope Gregory XV canonized our saint three years later.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

SEPTEMBER 23, 2016 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF ALL FAITHFUL BISHOPS

THE FEAST OF GERARD MOULTRIE, ANGLICAN PRIEST, HYMN WRITER, AND TRANSLATOR OF HYMNS

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Loving God, you called Francis Xavier to lead many in India and Japan

to know Jesus Christ as their Redeemer:

Bring us to the new life of glory promised to all who follow in the Way;

through the same Jesus Christ, who with you and the Holy Spirit

lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) 2:1-11

Psalm 62:1-2, 6-9

1 Corinthians 9:16-19, 22-23

Mark 16:15-20

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 99

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Feast of Amilie Juliane, Countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt (December 3)   1 comment

Flag of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt

Above:  The Flag of the County of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt

Image in the Public Domain

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AMILIE (OR EMILIE) JULIANE, COUNTESS OF SCHWARZBURG-RUDOLSTADT (AUGUST 16, 1637-DECEMBER 3, 1706)

German Lutheran Hymn Writer

Amilie Juliane, Countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt (1637-1706), wrote about 600 hymns.  She was therefore the most productive German female hymn writer.  Of those nearly 600 hymns, only three exist in English translations.  Once again, I notice that a great wealth of German hymnody remains off-limits to those of us who do not read German.

Our saint came from nobility.  He father was Count Albert Friedrich of Barby and Muhlingen.  The Count and his pregnant wife, displaced by the Thirty Years’ War (1618-1648), found refuge at the castle of Albert Friedrich’s uncle, Count Ludwig Gunther I of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt (lived 1581-1646; reigned 1612-1646).  There, at the castle at Heidecksburg castle, Rudolstadt, our saint entered the world on August 16, 1637.  Her parents (her father, then her mother) died in 1641 and 1642, leaving Amilie Juliane an orphan.  Countess Emilie Antonia von Oldenburg-Delmenhorst, wife of Count Ludwig Gunther I, adopted her goddaughter (our saint) and raised her alongside our saint’s cousins at the castle.  Countess Emilie Antonia served as the regent of the County of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt from 1646 to 1662, after her husband died.  Count Albert Anton (lived 1641-1710; reigned 1662-1710) came of age, began to rule in his own right in 1662, and married Amilie Juliane on July 5, 1665.  That marriage ended just over four decades later, when our saint died on December 3, 1706.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 3, 2015 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF WILL CAMPBELL, AGENT OF RECONCILIATION

THE FEAST OF SAINT LIPHARDUS OF ORLEANS AND URBICIUS OF MEUNG, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOTS

THE FEAST OF THE MARTYRS OF UGANDA

THE FEAST OF SAINT MORAND OF CLUNY, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK AND MISSIONARY

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Dear God of beauty,

you have granted literary ability and spiritual sensitivity to

Amilie Juliane, Countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt,

and others, who have composed hymn texts.

May we, as you guide us,

find worthy hymn texts to be icons,

through which we see you.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Sirach/Ecclesiasticus 44:1-3a, 5-15

Psalm 147

Revelation 5:11-14

Luke 2:8-20

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 20, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS AMATOR OF AUXERRE AND GERMANUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS; SAINT MAMERTINUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT; AND SAINT MARCIAN OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF JOHANNES BUGENHAGEN, GERMAN LUTHERAN PASTOR

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCELLINUS OF EMBRUN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF OLAVUS AND LAURENTIUS PETRI, RENEWERS OF THE CHURCH

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Saints’ Days and Holy Days for December   Leave a comment

Poinsettia

Image Source = Andre Karwath

1 (Charles de Foucauld, Roman Catholic Hermit and Martyr, 1916)

  • Albert Barnes, U.S. Presbyterian Minister, Abolitionist, and Alleged Heretic
  • Brioc, Roman Catholic Abbot; and Tudwal, Roman Catholic Abbot and Bishop
  • Douglas LeTell Rights, U.S. Moravian Minister, Scholar, and Hymn Writer
  • Edward Timothy Mickey, Jr., U.S. Moravian Bishop and Liturgist
  • George Hugh Bourne, Anglican Priest, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Translator

2 (Maura Clarke and Her Companions, U.S. Roman Catholic Martyrs in El Salvador, December 2, 1980)

  • Channing Moore Williams, Episcopal Missionary Bishop in China and Japan
  • Gerald Thomas Noel, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer; his brother, Baptist Wriothesley Noel, Anglican Priest, English Baptist Evangelist, and Hymn Writer; and his niece, Caroline Maria Noel, Anglican Hymn Writer
  • Hormisdas, Bishop of Rome; and his son, Silverius, Bishop of Rome, and Martyr, 537
  • Justin Heinrich Knecht, German Lutheran Organist, Music Teacher, and Composer
  • Rafal Chylinski, Polish Franciscan Roman Catholic Priest

3 (Francis Xavier, Roman Catholic Missionary to the Far East)

  • Amilie Juliane, Countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt, German Lutheran Hymn Writer
  • Archibald Campbell Tait, Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Jan Franciszek Macha, Polish Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1942
  • M. Woolsey Stryker, U.S. Presbyterian Minister, Educator, Author, Hymnal Editor, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Translator
  • Sophie Koulomzin, Russian-American Christian Educator

4 (John of Damascus and Cosmas of Maiuma, Theologians and Hymnodists)

  • Alexander Hotovitzky, Russian Orthodox Priest and Martyr, 1937
  • Bernard of Parma, Roman Catholic Bishop
  • Joseph Mohr, Austrian Roman Catholic Priest; and Franz Gruber, Austrian Roman Catholic Teacher, Musician, and Composer
  • Maruthas, Roman Catholic Bishop of Maypherkat, and Missionary to Persia
  • Osmund of Salisbury, Roman Catholic Bishop

5 (Clement of Alexandria, Father of Christian Scholarship)

  • Cyran, Roman Catholic Abbot
  • Narcyz Putz, Polish Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1942
  • Nelson Mandela, President of South Africa, and Renewer of Society
  • Nicetius of Trier, Roman Catholic Monk, Abbot, and Bishop; and Aredius of Limoges, Roman Catholic Monk
  • Peter Mortimer, Anglo-German Moravian Educator, Musician, and Scholar; and Gottfried Theodor Erxleben, German Moravian Minister and Musicologist

6 (Nicholas of Myra, Bishop)

  • Abraham of Kratia, Roman Catholic Monk, Abbot, Bishop, and Hermit
  • Alice Freeman Palmer, U.S. Educator and Hymn Writer
  • Anne Ross Cousin, Scottish Presbyterian Hymn Writer
  • Henry Ustick Onderdonk, Episcopal Bishop, Liturgist, and Hymn Writer
  • Philip Berrigan and his brother, Daniel Berrigan, Roman Catholic Priests and Social Activists

7 (Maria Josepha Rossello, Co-Founder of the Daughters of Our Lady of Pity)

  • Emma Francis, Lutheran Deaconess in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Harlem
  • Georg Friedrich Hellstrom, Dutch-German Moravian Musician, Composer, and Educator
  • John Greenleaf Whittier, U.S. Quaker Abolitionist, Poet, and Hymn Writer
  • John Howard Bertram Masterman, Anglican Scholar, Hymn Writer, Priest, and Bishop of Plymouth
  • William Gustave Polack, U.S. Lutheran Minister, Liturgist, and Hymn Writer and Translator

8 (Walter Ciszek, Roman Catholic Missionary Priest and Political Prisoner)

  • Amatus of Luxeuil and Romaric of Luxeuil, Roman Catholic Monks and Abbots
  • Erik Christian Hoff, Norwegian Lutheran Composer and Organist
  • Marin Shkurti, Albanian Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1969

9 (Liborius Wagner, German Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1631)

  • George Job Elvey, Anglican Composer and Organist
  • Peter Fourier, “The Good Priest of Mattaincourt;” and Alix Le Clerc, Founder of the Congregation of Notre Dame of Canonesses Regular of Saint Augustine

10 (Karl Barth, Swiss Reformed Minister, Theologian, and Biblical Scholar; and his son, Markus Barth, Swiss Lutheran Minister and Biblical Scholar)

  • Howell Elvet Lewis, Welsh Congregationalist Clergyman and Poet
  • John Roberts, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1610
  • Olivier Messiaen, Claire Delbos, and Yvonne Loriod, French Roman Catholic Musicians and Composers
  • Paul Eber, German Lutheran Theologian and Hymn Writer
  • Robert Murray, Canadian Presbyterian Minister and Hymn Writer

11 (Luke of Prague and John Augusta, Moravian Bishops and Hymn Writers)

  • Kazimierz Tomas Sykulski, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1942
  • Lars Olsen Skrefsrud, Hans Peter Boerresen, and Paul Olaf Bodding, Lutheran Missionaries in India
  • Martyrs of El Mozote, El Salvador, December 11-12, 1981
  • Severin Ott, Roman Catholic Monk

12 (William Lloyd Garrison, Abolitionist and Feminist; and Maria Stewart, Abolitionist, Feminist, and Educator)

  • Bartholomew Buonpedoni and Vivaldus, Ministers among Lepers
  • William Louis Poteat, President of Wake Forest College, and Biologist; his brother, Edwin McNeill Poteat, Sr., Southern and Northern Baptist Minister, Scholar, and President of Furman University; his son, Edwin McNeill Poteat, Jr., Southern Baptist Minister, Missionary, Musician, Hymn Writer, and Social Reformer;  his brother, Gordon McNeill Poteat, Southern and Northern Baptist and Congregationalist Minister and Missionary; and his cousin, Hubert McNeill Poteat, Southern Baptist Academic and Musician
  • Ludwik Bartosik, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1941
  • Thomas Canning, U.S. Composer and Music Educator

13 (Samuel Johnson, “The Great Moralist”)

  • Christian Furchtegott Gellert, German Lutheran Minister, Educator, and Hymn Writer
  • Ella J. Baker, Witness for Civil Rights
  • Paul Speratus, German Lutheran Bishop, Liturgist, and Hymn Writer
  • Pierson Parker, U.S. Congregationalist Minister, Episcopal Priest, and Biblical Scholar

14 (Radegunda, Thuringian Roman Catholic Princess, Deaconess, and Nun; and Venantius Honorius Clementius Fortunatus, Roman Catholic Bishop of Poitiers)

  • Dorothy Ann Thrupp, English Hymn Writer
  • Henry Aldrich, Anglican Priest, Composer, Theologian, Mathematician, and Architect
  • James Arnold Blaisdell, U.S. Congregationalist Minister, Scholar, and Hymn Writer
  • John of the Cross, Roman Catholic Mystic and Carmelite Friar
  • William Adams Brown, U.S. Presbyterian Minister, Theologian, and Social Reformer

15 (Thomas Benson Pollock, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer)

  • Fred D. Gealy, U.S. Methodist Minister, Missionary, Musician, and Biblical Scholar
  • Henry Fothergill Chorley, English Novelist, Playwright, and Literary and Music Critic
  • John Horden, Anglican Bishop of Moosenee
  • Ralph Wardlaw, Scottish Congregationalist Minister, Hymn Writer, and Liturgist
  • Robert McDonald, Anglican Priest and Missionary

16 (Ralph Adams Cram and Richard Upjohn, Architects; and John LaFarge, Sr., Painter and Stained-Glass Window Maker)

  • Filip Siphong Onphithakt, Roman Catholic Catechist and Martyr in Thailand, 1940
  • Maude Dominica Petre, Roman Catholic Modernist Theologian

17 (Eglantyne Jebb and Dorothy Buxton, Founders of Save the Children)

  • Dorothy Sayers, Anglican Poet, Novelist, Playwright, Translator, Apologist, and Theologian
  • Frank Mason North, U.S. Methodist Minister, Social Reformer, and Hymn Writer
  • Mary Cornelia Bishop Gates, U.S. Dutch Reformed Hymn Writer
  • Olympias of Constantinople, Widow and Deaconess

18 (Marc Boegner, French Reformed Minister and Ecumenist)

  • Alicia Domon and Her Companions, Martyrs in Argentina, 1977
  • Giulia Valle, Roman Catholic Nun
  • John Darwall, Anglican Priest and Composer
  • John MacLeod Campbell Crum, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer

19 (Raoul Wallenberg, Righteous Gentile)

  • Francesco Antonio Bonporti, Italian Roman Catholic Priest and Composer
  • Kazimiera Wolowska, Polish Roman Catholic Nun and Martyr, 1942
  • Robert Campbell, Scottish Episcopalian then Roman Catholic Social Advocate and Hymn Writer
  • William Henry Draper, Anglican Priest, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Translator
  • William Howard Bishop, Founder of the Glenmary Home Missioners

20 (Dominic of Silos, Roman Catholic Abbot)

  • Bates Gilbert Burt, Episcopal Priest, Hymn Writer, and Composer
  • D. Elton Trueblood, U.S. Quaker Theologian
  • Michal Piasczynski, Polish Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1940

21 (THOMAS THE APOSTLE, MARTYR)

22 (Frederick Temple and William Temple, Archbishops of Canterbury)

  • Chaeremon and Ischyrion, Roman Catholic Martyrs, Circa 250
  • Chico Mendes, “Gandhi of the Amazon”
  • Henry Budd, First Anglican Native Priest in North America; Missionary to the Cree Nation
  • Isaac Hecker, Founder of the Missionary Society of Saint Paul the Apostle

23 (John of Kanty, Roman Catholic Theologian)

  • Charbel, Roman Catholic Priest and Monk
  • James Prince Lee, Bishop of Manchester
  • William John Blew, English Priest and Hymn Writer

24 (CHRISTMAS EVE)

25 (CHRISTMAS DAY)

26 (SECOND DAY OF CHRISTMAS)

  • STEPHEN, DEACON AND MARTYR

27 (THIRD DAY OF CHRISTMAS)

  • JOHN THE EVANGELIST, APOSTLE

28 (FOURTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS)

  • HOLY INNOCENTS, MARTYRS, 4 B.C.E.

29 (FIFTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS)

  • Antonio Caldara, Roman Catholic Composer and Musician
  • John Burnett Morris, Sr., Episcopal Priest and Witness for Civil Rights
  • Philipp Heinrich Molther, German Moravian Minister, Bishop, Composer, and Hymn Translator
  • Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, and Martyr, 1170
  • Thomas Cotterill, English Priest, Hymn Writer, and Liturgist

30 (SIXTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS)

  • Allen Eastman Cross, U.S. Congregationalist Minister and Hymn Writer
  • George Wallace Briggs, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer
  • John Main, Anglo-Canadian Roman Catholic Priest and Monk
  • Frances Joseph-Gaudet, African-American Educator, Prison Reformer, and Social Worker

31 (SEVENTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS)

  • Giuseppina Nicoli, Italian Roman Catholic Nun and Minister to the Poor
  • New Year’s Eve
  • Rossiter Worthington Raymond, U.S. Novelist, Poet, Hymn Writer, and Mining Engineer
  • Zoticus of Constantinople, Priest and Martyr, Circa 351

 

Lowercase boldface on a date with two or more commemorations indicates a primary feast.