Archive for the ‘December 7’ Category

Feast of John Howard Bertram Masterman (December 7)   1 comment

Above:  The Flag of England

Image in the Public Domain

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JOHN HOWARD BERTRAM MASTERMAN (DECEMBER 6, 1867-NOVEMBER 5, 1933)

Anglican Scholar, Hymn Writer, Priest, and Bishop of Plymouth

Also known as J. H. B. Masterman and John H. B. Masterman

John Howard Bertram Masterman comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Methodist Hymnal (1966).

Our saint was an Anglican priest and a great scholar.  He, born in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England, on December 6, 1867, was a son of Thomas William Masterman.  Young John studied at Weymouth College, Weymouth; University College School, London; and St. John’s College, Cambridge (B.A., 1893; M.A., 1897; D.D., 1923).  He married Margarethe M. T. Bodemer in 1893.  The couple had one son.  Masterman, ordained to the diaconate in 1893 and the priesthood the following year, remained active in the church and the academy for the rest of his life.

Masterman spent 1893-1896 as an academic and clergyman in Cambridge.  He was lecturer to non-college students (1893-1895), Lecturer in History (1894-1896), and priest at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, a.k.a. the Round Church (1893-1895).  He visited Cambridge as the Hulsean Lecturer (1907-1908) and the Select Proctor (1900, 1904, 1908, 1914, and 1918).

Masterman was the Vicar of St. Aubyn, Devonport, near Plymouth, from 1896 to 1899.  During this time he wrote The Age of Milton (1897).

Masterman spent 1899-1912 in Birmingham or the vicinity thereof.  He was the Principal of Midlands Classical College, Edgbaston, from 1899 to 1901.  Then our saint served as the Lecturer of St. Philip’s Church, Birmingham (1901-1902); the Warden of Queen’s College, Birmingham (1901-1907); Honourary Canon of Birmingham (1905-1907); Professor of History, Birmingham University (1902-1909); the Examining Chaplain to the Bishop of Manchester (1903-1909); the Vicar of St. Michael’s College Church, Coventry (1907-1912); the Sub-Dean of St. Michael’s, Coventry (1908-1912); and the Rural Dean of Coventry (1912).  During this time, Masterman wrote

  1. Introduction and Notes to the Epistle of St. Peter (1900),
  2. Was Jesus Christ Divine:  An Enquiry Into the Credibility of the Incarnation (1904),
  3. I Believe in the Holy Ghost (1906),
  4. The Rights and Responsibilities of National Churches (1908),
  5. The House of Commons:  Its Place in National History (1908),
  6. The Dawn of Medieval Europe (1909),
  7. Parliament and the People (1909), and
  8. A History of the British Constitution (1911).

Masterman doubled as Canon of Coventry and the Rector of St. Mary-le-Bow, All Hallows, and St. John the Evangelist, London, from 1912 to 1922.  He edited the London Diocesan Magazine from 1919 to 1922.  Our saint also wrote:

  1. The Challenge of Christ (1913),
  2. Studies in the Book of Revelation (1918), and
  3. Aspects of Christian Character (1921).

Masterman spent the final stage of his ministry in Plymouth.  He, the Rector of Stoke Dameral Church (1922-1933), doubled as the Bishop of Plymouth (1923-1933).  During this time, he wrote The Christianity of Tomorrow (1929).

Masterman published a hymn, “Almighty God, Who Dost Give,” in the Missionary Handbook of the Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge in 1922.  The words have never ceased to be relevant.

Our saint, a month away from his sixty-sixth birthday, died in Devenport on November 5, 1933.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MAY 24, 202O COMMON ERA

THE SEVENTH SUNDAY OF EASTER, YEAR A

THE FEAST OF NICOLAUS SELNECKER, GERMAN LUTHERAN, THEOLOGIAN, AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF JACKSON KEMPER, EPISCOPAL MISSIONARY BISHOP

THE FEAST OF EDITH MARY MELLISH (A.K.A. MOTHER EDITH), FOUNDRESS OF THE COMMUNITY OF THE SACRED NAME

THE FEAST OF MARIA GARGANI, FOUNDRESS OF THE SISTERS APOSTLES OF THE SACRED HEART

THE FEAST OF MARY MADELEVA WOLFF, U.S. ROMAN CATHOLIC NUN, POET, SCHOLAR, AND PRESIDENT OF SAINT MARY’S COLLEGE, NOTRE DAME, INDIANA

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O God, you have endowed us with memory, reason, and skill.

We thank you for the faithful legacy of [John Howard Bertram Masterman and all others]

who have dedicated their lives to you and to the intellectual pursuits.

May we, like them, respect your gift of intelligence fully and to your glory.

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

Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Psalm 103

Philippians 4:8-9

Mark 12:28-34

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MARCH 6, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT CHRODEGANG OF METZ, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF EDMUND KING, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF LINCOLN

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Feast of John Greenleaf Whittier (December 7)   3 comments

Above:  John Greenleaf Whittier

Image in the Public Domain

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JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER (DECEMBER 7, 1807-SEPTEMBER 7, 1892)

U.S. Quaker Abolitionist, Poet, and Hymn Writer

John Greenleaf Whittier was one of the greatest American poets of the nineteenth century.

Whittier, born and raised in a Quaker family on a farm near Haverhill, Massachusetts, on December 7, 1807, worked hard as a youth.  He was a farmer, of course, but was also a cobbler.  (Farming was not his sole concern, although he remained a grounded person.)  Our saint had little formal education–a few terms at Haverhill Academy, actually.  While there, he began to write.  William Lloyd Garrison (1805-1879) made Whittier a published poet in the Newburyport Free Press, in 1826.  The two men became lifelong friends in 1829.

Whittier’s friendship with Garrison advanced our saint professionally.  In 1829 Garrison helped Whittier become the editor of The American Manufacturer, Boston, Massachusetts.  This was a politically Whig publication that focused on industrial and agricultural interests.  While editor of The American Manufacturer, Whittier became involved in the abolitionist movement.  Our saint went on to edit The New England Weekly Review (1830-1832), The Pennsylvania Freeman (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1838-1840), and The Middlesex Standard (Lowell, Massachusetts, 1844-1845), as well as to join the staff of The Washington National Era (1847-1869).

Whittier put his literary skills to work in the service of abolitionism in other ways, too.  He wrote Justice and Expediency (1833), a best-selling pamphlet.  That year, as the secretary of the Anti-Slavery Convention, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, our saint helped to draft the declaration of principles.  Four years later, he published Poems Written During the Progress of the Abolitionist Cause in the United States.

Whittier did more than write and edit.  In 1835 he won a seat in the Massachusetts legislature.  The following year, he became the secretary of the American Anti-Slavery Society.  In 1835 and 1838 Whittier experienced pro-slavery mob violence–first in Concord, New Hampshire.  Three years later, he witnessed the burning of the offices of The Pennsylvania Freeman.

Throughout mob violence and the United States Civil War Whittier, a womb-to-tomb Quaker, remained a staunch pacifist.  Although he preferred secession to war, he welcomed Confederate defeat at the end of that war.

Whittier became more radical as he aged.  By the end of his life, he had abandoned enough of his former, traditional ideas about gender to support women’s suffrage.

Whittier also composed religious poems, some of which congregations sang as hymns, starting during his lifetime.  He denied being a hymn writer, though; his Quaker congregations did not sing hymns.  Nevertheless, generations of Christians have sung some of his texts, including “Dear Lord and Father of Mankind,” as hymns.

Whittier moved in with three female cousins in Danvers, Massachusetts, in 1876.  He died in Hampton Falls, New York, on September 7, 1892.  He was 86 years old.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 26, 2019 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF ISABEL FLORENCE HAPGOOD, U.S. JOURNALIST, TRANSLATOR, AND ECUMENIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT ANDRA GIACINTO LONGHIN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF TREVISO

THE FEAST OF PHILIP DODDRIDGE, ENGLISH CONGREGATIONALIST MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF VIRGIL MICHEL, U.S. ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK, ACADEMIC, AND PIONEER OF LITURGICAL RENEWAL

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Eternal God, light of the world and Creator of all that is good and lovely:

We bless your name for inspiring John Greenleaf Whittier

and all those who with words have filled us with desire and love for you;

through Jesus Christ our Savior, who with you and the Holy Spirit

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

1 Chronicles 29:14b-19

Psalm 90:14-17

2 Corinthians 3:1-3

John 21:15-17, 24-25

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 728

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Feast of Emma Francis (December 7)   Leave a comment

Above:  Flag of the United States Virgin Islands

Image in the Public Domain

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EMMA FRANCIS (DECEMBER 7, 1875-APRIL 8, 1945)

Lutheran Deaconess in the United States Virgin Islands and Harlem

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God is God.  He alone is All-wise.  On Him we must trust for the future although it appears dark to us.

–G. Scott Cady and Christopher L. Webber, A Year with American Saints (2006), 389

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Emma Francis devoted her life to serving God and being a positive influence in society.  She, born on St. Kitts (in the West Indies) on December 7, 1875, was a daughter of Mary H. Francis and the Reverend Joseph Francis.  After a Moravian education on Antigua, our saint trained in Germany to become a missionary.  She was originally supposed to go to Africa, but the leaders of the missionary training school became concerned that white missionaries would discriminate against her.  So, in 1906, Frances began to train in Friendenshort to become a deaconess.  She, consecrated in 1907, transferred in 1908 to the Ebenezer Home for Girls, Frederikstad, St. Croix, Danish territory until 1917.  She taught in the orphanage for all but six years of the remainder of her life.

Frances spent 1921-1927 in Harlem, New York, New York.  In 1922 she became the first African-American deaconess in North American Lutheranism–in the United Lutheran Church in America (extant 1918-1962), a predecessor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.  While in Harlem, she helped to found the Lutheran Church of the Transfiguration, now the Christ Center at Transfiguration.

Francis, a stickler about observing the Sabbath, worked well with at-risk youth for decades.  She also learned German and Spanish so she could expand her ministry.

Deaconess Emma Francis, 69 years old, died on April 8, 1945.

In 2019 the Queen Louise Home campus of Lutheran Social Services of the Virgin Islands has a special unit for children and young adults with severe physical and developmental disabilities.  The name for that unit is the Sister Emma Cottage, appropriately.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2019 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

THE FEAST OF SAINT DOMINGO HENARES DE ZAFIRA CUBERO, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF PHUNHAY, VIETNAM, AND MARTYR; SAINT PHANXICÔ DO VAN CHIEU, VIETNAMESE ROMAN CATHOLIC CATECHIST AND MARTYR; AND SAINT CLEMENTE IGNACIO DELGADO CEBRIÁN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP AND MARTYR IN VIETNAM

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O God, your Son came among us to serve and not to be served,

and to give his life for the life of the world.

Lead us by his love to serve all those to whom

the world offers no comfort and little help.

Through us give hope to the hopeless,

love to the unloved,

and rest to the weary,

through Jesus Christ, our Savior and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Hosea 2:18-23

Psalm 94:1-15

Romans 12:9-21

Luke 6:20-36

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), 60

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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 William Gustave Polack (December 7)   4 comments

Polacks

Above:  The Family Tree of William Gustave Pollack

Scan by Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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WILLIAM GUSTAVE POLACK (DECEMBER 7, 1890-JUNE 5, 1950)

U.S. Lutheran Minister, Liturgist, and Hymn Writer and Translator

The name of William Gustave Polack came to my attention because I collect hymnals and their companion volumes.  More than a decade ago I acquired a copy of The Lutheran Hymnal (1941).  More recently I purchased a copy of the Handbook thereto.  Then I saw the name of the author of that volume:  William Gustave Polack.

Our saint, a son of Herman Adolph Polack (June 10, 1862-April 25, 1930), a native of Crete Township, Illinois, and his German-born wife, Wilhemina “Minnie” Henrietta Carolina Stohs Polack (born circa 1863), entered the world at Wassau, Wisconsin, on December 7, 1890.  Herman was a son of the Reverend Wilhelm Gustave Polack (1825-1898), a German emigrant, and Maria Elizabetha Hansz Polack (1834-1922), a native of Alsace.  Herman, a school teacher, taught in public schools then in Lutheran parochial schools.  He was also an organist, a composer, and a choir director.  He composed the tune CLAIRVAUX for the hymn “Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee.”  Herman also served on the music committee for the Evangelical Lutheran Hymn-Book (1912), the first English-language official hymnal of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS), then called the German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Missouri, Ohio, and Other States (GELSMOOS).  At least three hymnals–the Evangelical Lutheran Hymn-Book (1912), The Lutheran Hymnal (1941), and the Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary (1996)–included that tune.  Herman died at Lakewood, Ohio, on April 25, 1930.  Attendees at his funeral sang “Jesus the Very Thought of Thee” to the tune CLAIRVAUX.

Our saint became a Lutheran minister.  Preparation for ordination included attending Concordia College, Fort Wayne, Indiana, and Concordia Theological Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri.  He graduated from seminary in 1914.  The Reverend Carl Adolf Frank (1846-1922), founder (in 1882) and first editor (1882-1891) of the Lutheran Witness, ordained Polack and mentored him.  From 1914 to 1925 our saint served  Trinity Lutheran Church, Evansville, Indiana, as assistant pastor (under Frank) from 1914 to 1921 and as pastor from 1921 to 1925.  On August 14, 1914, our saint had married Iona Mary Gick (1891-1971).  By the time of the 1920 Census the couple had three children.  Three more had joined the family in time for the 1930 Census.

In 1925 Polack became a Professor of Theology at Concordia Theological Seminary, St. Louis, teaching liturgics and church history mainly.  At that time he became more involved in denominational life.  From 1925 to 1950 he served as the Associate Editor of the Lutheran Witness.  He edited the Concordia Historical Quarterly from 1927 to 1949, served as the Secretary of the Concordia Historical Institute from 1927 to 1937, and led the organization from 1945 to 1949.  Other editorial duties included those for the Concordia Junior Messenger (from 1928 to 1939) and denominational Sunday School literature for young people.

Polack was a leading liturgist in his denomination.  In 1929 he became the Chairman of the Committee on Hymnology and Liturgics of the Missouri Synod.  The following year he organized the Intersynodical Committee on Hymnology and Liturgics for the Evangelical Lutheran Synodical Conference of North America.  In that capacity he oversaw the creation of The Lutheran Hymnal (1941), which included twelve of his hymns–three original texts and nine translations.

Polack wrote many books.  Among his favorite topics were church history and foreign missions.  Some of those volumes were:

  1. The Building of a Great Church:  A Brief History of Our Lutheran Church in America (1926);
  2. David Livingstone:  The Story of a Great Missionary Hero (1929);
  3. Into All the World:  The Story of Lutheran Foreign Missions (1930);
  4. The Story of Luther (1931);
  5. Famous Missionary Pioneers (1933);
  6. The Story of C. F. W. Walther (1935);
  7. The Lord is My Shepherd (1938);
  8. Fathers and Founders (1938);
  9. The Handbook to the Lutheran Hymnal (1942);
  10. Rainbow Over Calvary (1943); and
  11. Beside Still Waters (1950, published posthumously).

Polack died of a brain tumor on June 5, 1950.  He was 59 years old.  His grave site is at Clear Lake Lutheran Church, Clear Lake, Indiana, which he helped to found (near his cottage) in 1938.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JULY 20, 2015 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAMUEL HANSON COX, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN MINISTER AND ABOLITIONIST; AND HIS SON, ARTHUR CLEVELAND COXE, EPISCOPAL BISHOP OF WESTERN NEW YORK, HYMN WRITER, AND TRANSLATOR OF HYMNS

THE FEAST OF SAINT ANSEGISUS OF FONTANELLE, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

THE FEAST OF ELIZABETH CADY STANTON, AMELIA BLOOMER, SOJOURNER TRUTH, AND HARRIET ROSS TUBMAN, WITNESSES TO CIVIL RIGHTS FOR AFRICAN AMERICANS AND WOMEN

THE FEAST OF SAINTS FLAVIAN II OF ANTIOCH AND ELIAS OF JERUSALEM, ROMAN CATHOLIC PATRIARCHS

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

thank you for those (especially William Gustave Polack)

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 Georg Friedrich Hellstrom (December 7)   Leave a comment

Moravian Logo

Above:  Logo of the Moravian Church

Scan by Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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GEORG FRIEDRICH HELLSTROM (DECEMBER 7, 1825-1912)

Dutch-German Moravian Musician, Composer, and Educator

Georg Friedrich Hellstrom was one of many composers and musicians of the Moravian Church (Unitas Fratrum) who used his talents for the glory of God and the spiritual enrichment of his faith community.  He, whose father was Swedish and mother was Danish, entered the world at Zeist, The Netherlands.  Our saint studied at Niesky, where he played viola in the orchestra, sang in the choir, and trained as an organist.  Later Hellstrom taught in the Moravia Church schools at Niesky, Kleinwelka, and Ebersdorf.  From 1852 to 1894 he served at Christiansfeld, Denmark, where he observed the development of the congregation’s musical style into a more Romantic one.  He left for Gradenfrei in 1845, Kleinwelka in 1895, and Neudietendorf in 1898.  There he died in 1912.

Hellstrom was a frugal man and a prolific composer.  He was also a much sought-after music teacher and organist.  In 1859 he turned down an offer to move to Gradenfrei (where he moved in 1894) so he could remain at Christiansfeld.  Our saint was so frugal that he often copied his music on the back of works of other composers, not that using new paper would have constituted an offense.  Among his works was a setting of Morning Star, the great Christmas text, which, in his hands, came accompanied by a brass quartet.

Hellstrom and others like him were reasons the Moravian Church earned a reputation for musical excellence.  If one will praise God with music, why not do so with the best music?

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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Eternal God, light of the world and Creator of all that is good and lovely:

We bless your name for inspiring Georg Friedrich Hellstrom and

all who with music have filled us with desire and love for you;

through Jesus Christ our Savior, who with you and the Holy Spirit

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

1 Chronicles 29:14b-19

Psalm 90:14-17

2 Corinthians 3:1-3

John 21:15-17, 24-25

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 728

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Feast of St. Maria Josepha Rossello (December 7)   Leave a comment

Above:  The Unification of Italy

SAINT MARIA JOSEPHA ROSSELLO (MAY 27, 1811-DECEMBER 7, 1880)

Cofounder of the Daughters of Our Lady of Pity

Benedetta Rossello was born at Abisola Marina, Liguria, Sardinia, on May 27, 1811.  She became a Franciscan tertiary at age sixteen and meant to become a hermitess, but her spiritual director talked her out of that path.  No, the saint’s vocation took in a different direction.  The saint, instead of becoming a hermitess, became a caregiver to an invalid man at Savona, Sardinia, for the last nine years of his life.  Then  the saint and two cousins, Angela and Domenica Pescio, founded a new religious order devoted to founding and operating hospitals, and educating poor girls.  Angela served as the first superior and St. Benedetta/Maria Josepha as the first mistress of novices.  The saint served as superior from 1840 to her death, when the order operated 86 foundations–schools, hospitals, children’s homes, and a house to encourage priestly vocations.  Unfortunately, physical illness and what John J. Delaney, in his Dictionary of Saints, described as “spiritual aridity,” marked the saint’s last few years.

“Spiritual aridity” is a common condition among both the canonized and uncanonized faithful of the Christian flock.   I am certainly familiar with it, and I have felt close to God for most of my life, since childhood.  The proper response to “spiritual aridity” is to keep walking through the proverbial desert, to continue on one’s spiritual pilgrimage.  That is what St. Maria Josepha Rossello did, and she emerged from the desert at the end.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 16, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARGARET OF SCOTLAND, QUEEN

THE FEAST OF SAINT GIUSEPPE MOSCATI, PHYSICIAN

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Almighty God, you have surrounded us with a great cloud of witnesses:

Grant that we, encouraged by the good example of your servant Saint Maria Josepha Rossello,

may persevere in running the race that is set before us,

until at last we may with him attain to eternal joy;

through Jesus Christ, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith,

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Micah 6:6-8

Psalm 15

Hebrews 12:1-2

Matthew 25:31-40

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 724

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 of Treguier
  • 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 (Hormisdas, Bishop of Rome; and his son, Silverius, Bishop of Rome, and Martyr, 537)

  • 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
  • Justin Heinrich Knecht, German Lutheran Organist, Music Teacher, and Composer
  • Maura Clarke and Her Companions, U.S. Roman Catholic Martyrs in El Salvador, December 2, 1980
  • 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 of Parma
  • 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 of Salisbury

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 of Trier; 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 of Myra)

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

7 (John Greenleaf Whittier, U.S. Quaker Abolitionist, Poet, and Hymn Writer)

  • Emma Francis, Lutheran Deaconess in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Harlem
  • Georg Friedrich Hellstrom, Dutch-German Moravian Musician, Composer, and Educator
  • John Howard Bertram Masterman, Anglican Scholar, Hymn Writer, Priest, and Bishop of Plymouth
  • Maria Josepha Rossello, Co-Founder of the Daughters of Our Lady of Pity
  • 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
  • Ambrose Reeves, Anglican Bishop of Johannesburg, and Opponent of Apartheid
  • Erik Christian Hoff, Norwegian Lutheran Composer and Organist
  • Marin Shkurti, Albanian Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1969
  • Narcisa de Jesús Martillo-Morán, Ecuadorian Roman Catholic Mystic and Ascetic

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

  • David Brüning, S. German Evangelical Minister, Hymnal Editor, and Hymn Tune Composer
  • George Job Elvey, Anglican Composer and Organist
  • John Zundel, German-American Organist, Hymnal Editor, Hymn Tune Composer, and Music Editor
  • Peter Fourier, “The Good Priest of Mattaincourt;” and Alix Le Clerc, Founder of the Congregation of Notre Dame of Canonesses Regular of Saint Augustine
  • Thomas Merton, S. Roman Catholic Priest, Monk, and Spiritual Writer

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 (Martyrs of El Mozote, El Salvador, December 11-12, 1981)

  • Howard Chandler Robbins, Episcopal Priest, Hymn Writer, Hymn Translator, and Hymn Tune Composer
  • Kazimierz Tomas Sykulski, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1942
  • Lars Olsen Skrefsrud, Hans Peter Boerresen, and Paul Olaf Bodding, Lutheran Missionaries in India
  • Luke of Prague and John Augusta, Moravian Bishops and Hymn Writers
  • 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
  • Jonathan Krause, Silesian Lutheran Minister, Hymn Writer, and Hymnal Editor
  • Ludwik Bartosik, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1941
  • Thomas Canning, U.S. Composer and Music Educator
  • 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

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
  • R. Birch Hoyle, English Baptist Minister and Hymn Translator

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)

  • Alexis Feodorovich Lvov, Russian Orthodox Musician and Composer
  • Conrad Kocher, German Composer and Music Educator; Reformer of Church Music in Germany
  • Filip Siphong Onphithakt, Roman Catholic Catechist and Martyr in Thailand, 1940
  • Lewis Henry Redner, Episcopal Organist and Hymn Tune Composer
  • Maude Dominica Petre, Roman Catholic Modernist Theologian

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

  • Althea Brown Edmiston, African-American Southern Presbyterian Missionary in the Congo Free State then Belgian Congo
  • 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
  • Horatio William Parker, Episcopal Composer, Organist, and Music Educator
  • 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
  • Benjamin Tucker Tanner, African Methodist Episcopal Bishop and Renewer of Society
  • D. Elton Trueblood, U.S. Quaker Theologian
  • Johann Christoph Schwedler, German Lutheran Minister and Hymn Writer
  • 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”
  • Demetrius A. Gallitzin, Russian-American Roman Catholic Missionary Priest; “The Apostle of the Alleghenies”
  • 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
  • Henry Schwing, U.S. Organist and Music Educator; “The Grand Old Man of Maryland Music”
  • James Prince Lee, Anglican Bishop of Manchester
  • Thomas Baldwin, U.S. Baptist Minister and Hymn Writer
  • 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
  • Josiah Booth, English Organist, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Tune Composer
  • 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
  • Henry Irving Louttit, Jr., Episcopal Bishop of Georgia
  • 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.