Archive for the ‘February 22’ Category

Feast of Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl, and Christoph Probst (February 22)   Leave a comment

hans-and-sophie-scholl

Above:  Hans and Sophie Scholl

Image in the Public Domain

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HANS SCHOLL (SEPTEMBER 22, 1918-FEBRUARY 22, 1943)

Anti-Nazi Martyr at Munich, Germany

brother of

SOPHIE SCHOLL (MAY 9, 1921-FEBRUARY 22, 1943)

Anti-Nazi Martyr at Munich, Germany

colleague of

CHRISTOPH PROBST (NOVEMBER 6, 1918-FEBRUARY 22, 1943)

Anti-Nazi Martyr at Munich, Germany

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Everywhere and at all times of greatest trial men have appeared, prophets and saints who cherished their freedom, who preached the One God and who with His help brought the people to a reversal of their downward course.  Man is free, to be sure, but without the true God he is defenseless against the principle of evil….We will not be silent.  We are your bad conscience.  The White Rose will not leave you in peace.

–A White Rose leaflet, quoted in Robert Ellsberg, All Saints:  Daily Reflections on Saints, Prophets, and Witnesses for Our Time (New York:  The Crossroad Publishing Company, 1997), page 88

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Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl, and Christoph Probst were the core members of the White Rose, an anti-Nazi organization of university students at Munich founded in June 1942.  Hans was a medical student and a veteran of the Russian front.  His sister, Sophie, studied philosophy.  Their colleague, Christoph Probst, was also a medical student.  Members of the White Rose wrote and distributed anti-Nazi leaflets and wrote (in German, of course) “Down with Hitler” in public places.  Our saints’ Christian faith drove them to resist tyranny.  On February 18, 1943, agents of the Gestapo arrested the brother and sister while they were distributing leaflets.  Shortly thereafter the other members of the White Rose were also in custody.  Within four days the Scholls and Probst were dead (via guillotine), their penalty following their conviction on the charge of treason.

These saints knew that following the dictates of their consciences would be dangerous.  Yet they did what knew was correct.  In so doing they glorified God and stood up for their fellow human beings.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 6, 2016 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICETIUS OF TRIER, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK, ABBOT, AND BISHOP; AND SAINT AREDIUS OF LIMOGES, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF SAINT ABRAHAM OF KRATIA, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK, ABBOT, BISHOP, AND HERMIT

THE FEAST OF HENRY USTICK ONDERDONK, EPISCOPAL BISHOP, LITURGIST, AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICHOLAS OF MYRA, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

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Almighty God, by whose grace and power your holy martyrs

Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl, and Christoph Probst

triumphed over suffering and were faithful even to death:

Grant us, who now remember them in thanksgiving,

to be so faithful in our witness to you in this world,

that we may receive with them the crown of life;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) 51:1-12

Psalm 116 or 116:1-8

Revelation 7:13-17

Luke 12:2-12

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 714

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Feast of St. Margaret of Cortona (February 22)   Leave a comment

st-margaret-of-cortona

Above:  St. Margaret of Cortona

Image in the Public Domain

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SAINT MARGARET OF CORTONA (1247-FEBRUARY 22, 1297)

Penitent and Foundress of the Poor Ones

St. Margaret of Cortona, born at Laviano, Umbria, in 1247, was a daughter of a farmer.  Her mother died when our saint was seven years old.  Eventually St. Margaret’s father remarried; his second wife thought of our saint as a nuisance.  For nine years St. Margaret was the mistress of a nobleman of Montepulciano, whose child she bore.  Our saint, interpreting her lover’s murder by brigands in 1274 as not only an unfortunate event but a message from God that she should never have entered into that relationship, became a penitent.  When she attempted to return to her father’s home, he turned her and his grandchild away.  Fortunately, the Franciscans at Cortona, Tuscany, took them in.  Nevertheless, St. Margaret continue to have affairs.  She also felt self-loathing after each liaison.

Eventually, however, St. Margaret turned a spiritual corner.  She began to take care of sick women.  Then she cared for poor women without charge while she lived on alms.  In 1777 our saint became a Franciscan tertiary.  She had an intense prayer life and reported ecstasies.  In 1286 St. Margaret gathered a congregation of women (the Poor Ones) around her to care for the sick poor.  She also founded a hospital at Cortona, preached against vice, and had a devotion to the Eucharist and the Passion.  Despite her reformed life, marked by a plethora of good works, St. Margaret remained a target of much malicious gossip.

St. Margaret died at Cortona on February 22, 1297.  She was either 49 or 50 years old.  Pope Leo X beatified her in 1516.  Pope Benedict XIII canonized our saint in 1728.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 6, 2016 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICETIUS OF TRIER, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK, ABBOT, AND BISHOP; AND SAINT AREDIUS OF LIMOGES, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF SAINT ABRAHAM OF KRATIA, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK, ABBOT, BISHOP, AND HERMIT

THE FEAST OF HENRY USTICK ONDERDONK, EPISCOPAL BISHOP, LITURGIST, AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICHOLAS OF MYRA, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

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Almighty God, by your Holy Spirit you have made

us one with your saints in heaven and on earth:

Grant that in our earthly pilgrimage we may always

be supported by this fellowship of love and prayer,

and know ourselves to be surrounded by

their witnesses to your power and mercy.

We ask this for the sake of Jesus Christ, in whom

all our intercessions are acceptable through your Spirit,

and who lives and reigns for ever and ever.  Amen.

Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) 2:7-11

Psalm 1

1 Corinthians 1:26-31

Matthew 25:1-13

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 726

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Feast of St. Praetextatus (February 22)   2 comments

Above:  Gaul in 561 C.E.

Image in the Public Domain

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SAINT PRAETEXTATUS (DIED 586)

Roman Catholic Bishop of Rouen

St. Praetextatus , Bishop of Rouen from 549 to 586, became caught up in struggles among sons of Clotaire/Lothair I, King of Soissons from 511 to 558 and King of all Franks from 558 to 561.  Clotaire/Lothair I had four sons:

  • Chilperic I, King of Soissons from 561 to 584
  • Sigebert I, King of Austrasia from 561 to 575
  • Charibert I, King of Paris from 561 to 567
  • Guntram, King of Burgundy from 561 to 593.

Fredegunde, Chilperic I’s mistress then wife, caused the murder of Sigebert I and his sons, and probably of her husband as well, so that Clotaire/Lothair II, her son, the King of Neustria (from 584), could become King of all Franks, which he was from 613 to 629.  The bishop denounced her actions, so he had to go into exile.  The saint had, by his own admission, aided Chilperic I’s son, Meroveus, in an uprising.  Chilperic I died in 584, at which point Guntram, King of Burgundy, permitted St. Praetextatus to return.  Yet Fredegunde sent an assassin, who proved successful.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 8, 2011 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF MARTIN RINCKART, ARCHDEACON OF EILENBURG

THE FEAST OF RICHARD BAXTER, ANGLICAN THEOLOGIAN

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Gracious God,

in every age you have sent men and women

who have given their lives in witness to your love and truth.

Inspire us with the memory of Saint Praetextatus,

whose faithfulness led to the way of the cross,

and give us courage to bear full witness with our lives

to your Son’s victory over sin and death,

for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Ezekiel 20:40-42

Psalm 5

Revelation 6:9-11

Mark 8:34-38

–Adapted from Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 59

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Revised on December 5, 2016

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Saints’ Days and Holy Days for February   Leave a comment

Winter, by Hendrick Avercamp

Image in the Public Domain

1 (Henry Morse, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr)

  • Benedict Daswa, Roman Catholic Catechist and Martyr
  • Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Roman Catholic Composer and Musician
  • Sigebert III, King of Austrasia

2 (PRESENTATION OF JESUS IN THE TEMPLE)

3 (Anskar and Rimbert, Roman Catholic Archbishops of Hamburg-Bremen)

  • Alfred Delp, German Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
  • Charles Seymour Robinson, U.S. Presbyterian Minister, Hymn Writer, and Hymnologist
  • Nicholas Kasatkin, Orthodox Archbishop of All Japan

4 (CORNELIUS THE CENTURION, WITNESS TO THE CRUCIFIXION)

5 (Martyrs of Japan, 1597-1639)

  • Avitus of Vienne, Roman Catholic Bishop
  • Jane (Joan) of Valois, Cofounder of the Sisters of the Annunciation
  • Phileas and Philoromus, Roman Catholic Martyrs

6 (Marcus Aurelius Clemens Prudentius, Poet and Hymn Writer)

  • Mateo Correa-Magallanes and Miguel Agustin Pro, Mexican Roman Catholic Priests and Martyrs
  • Vedast (Vaast), Roman Catholic Bishop of Arras and Cambrai
  • William Boyce and John Alcock, Anglican Composers

7 (Helder Camara, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Olinda and Recife)

  • Adalbert Nierychlewski, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
  • Mitchell J. Dahood, Roman Catholic Priest and Biblical Scholar
  • Moses, Apostle to the Saracens

8 (Josephine Bakhita, Roman Catholic Nun)

  • Jerome Emiliani, Founder of the Company of the Servants of the Poor
  • John of Matha and Felix of Valois, Founders of the Order of the Most Holy Trinity
  • Josephina Gabriella Bonino, Foundress of the Sisters of the Holy Family

9 (Benjamin Schmolck, German Lutheran Pastor and Hymn Writer)

  • Adelaide Anne Procter, English Poet and Feminist
  • Alto of Altomunster, Roman Catholic Hermit
  • Porfirio, Martyr

10 (Scholastica, Abbess of Plombariola; and her twin brother, Benedict of Nursia, Abbot of Monte Cassino and Father of Western Monasticism)

  • Benedict of Aniane, Restorer of Western Monasticism; and Ardo of Aniane, Roman Catholic Abbot
  • Henry Williams Baker, Anglican Priest
  • Philip Armes, Anglican Church Organist and Composer

11 (ONESIMUS, BISHOP OF BYZANTIUM)

12 (Absalom Jones, Richard Allen, and Jarena Lee, Evangelists and Social Activists)

  • Charles Freer Andrews, Anglican Priest
  • Christoph Carl Ludwig von Pfeil, German Lutheran Hymn Writer
  • Michael Weisse, German Moravian Minister and Hymn Writer and Translator; and Jan Roh, Bohemian Moravian Bishop and Hymn Writer

13 (AQUILA, PRISCILLA, AND APOLLOS, COWORKERS OF SAINT PAUL THE APOSTLE)

14 (Abraham of Carrhae, Roman Catholic Bishop)

  • Cyril and Methodius, Missionaries to the Slavs
  • Johann Michael Altenburg, German Lutheran Pastor, Composer, and Hymn Writer
  • Victor Olof Petersen, Swedish-American Lutheran Hymn Translator

15 (New Martyrs of Libya, 2015)

  • Francis Harold Rowley, Northern Baptist Minister, Humanitarian, and Hymn Writer
  • Michael Praetorious, German Lutheran Composer and Musicologist
  • Thomas Bray, Anglican Priest

16 (Philipp Melanchton, German Lutheran Theologian and Scribe of the Reformation)

  • Christian Frederick Martin, Sr., and Charles Augustus Zoebisch, German-American Instrument Maker
  • Louis (Lewis) F. Kampmann, U.S. Moravian Minister, Missionary, and Hymn Translator
  • Norbert of Xanten, Founder of the Premonstratensians; Hugh of Fosses, Second Founder of the Premonstratensians; and Evermod, Bishop of Ratzeburg

17 (August Crull, German-American Lutheran Minister, Poet, Professor, Hymnodist, and Hymn Translator)

  • Francis Serrano, Roman Catholic Priest and Missionary
  • Janani Luwum, Archbishop and Martyr
  • Marie Adolphine Dierks, Roman Catholic Nun, Missionary, and Martyr

18 (Ben Salmon, Roman Catholic Pacifist and Conscientious Objector)

  • Barbasymas, Sadoth of Seleucia, and Their Companions, Martyrs
  • Colman of Lindisfarne, Agilbert, and Wilfrid, Bishops
  • Guido di Pietro, a.k.a. Fra Angelico, Roman Catholic Monk and Artist

19 (Nerses I the Great, Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic Church, and Mesrop, Bible Translator)

  • Bernard Barton, English Quaker Poet and Hymn Writer
  • James Drummond Burns, Scottish Presbyterian Minister, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Translator
  • Samuel Davies, American Presbyterian Minister and Hymn Writer

20 (Johann Heermann, German Lutheran Minister and Hymn Writer)

  • Henri de Lubac, Roman Catholic Priest, Cardinal, and Theologian
  • Karl Friedrich Lochner, German Lutheran Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Wulfric of Haselbury, Roman Catholic Hermit

21 (John Henry Newman, Cardinal)

  • Arnulf of Metz, Roman Catholic Bishop; and Germanus of Granfel, Roman Catholic Abbot and Martyr
  • Robert Southwell, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
  • Samuel Wolcott, U.S. Congregationalist Minister, Missionary, and Hymn Writer

22 (Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl, and Christoph Probst, Anti-Nazi Martyrs at Munich, Germany)

  • Eric Liddell, Scottish Presbyterian Missionary to China
  • Margaret of Cortona, Penitent and Foundress of the Poor Ones
  • Praetextatus, Roman Catholic Bishop of Rouen

23 (Ignatius of Antioch, Polycarp of Smyrna, and Irenaeus of Lyons, Bishops and Martyrs)

  • Alexander Akimetes, Roman Catholic Abbot
  • Stefan Wincenty Frelichowski, Polish Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
  • Willigis, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Mainz; and Bernward, Roman Catholic Bishop of Hildesheim

24 (MATTHIAS THE APOSTLE, MARTYR)

25 (Gregory of Nazianzus the Elder, Nonna, and Their Children:  Gregory of Nazianzus the Younger, Caesarius of Nazianzus, and Gorgonia of Nazianzus)

  • Felix Varela, Cuban Roman Catholic Priest and Patriot
  • John Roberts, Episcopal Missionary to the Shoshone and Arapahoe
  • Theodor Fliedner, Renewer of the Female Diaconate; and Elizabeth Fedde, Norwegian Lutheran Deaconess

26 (Antonio Valdivieso, Roman Catholic Bishop of Leon and Martyr)

  • Emily Malbone Morgan, Founder of the Society of the Companions of the Holy Cross
  • Paula of St. Joseph of Calasanz, Foundress of the Daughters of Mary

27 (Nicholas Ferrar, Anglican Deacon; George Herbert, Anglican Priest and Metaphysical Poet; and All Saintly Parish Priests)

  • Anne Line and Roger Filcock, Roman Catholic Martyrs
  • Gabriel Possenti, Penitent
  • Luis de Leon, Spanish Roman Catholic Priest and Theologian

28 (Thomas Binney, English Congregationalist Minister, Liturgist, and “Archbishop of Nonconformity”)

  • Andrew Reed, English Congregationalist Minister, Humanitarian, and Hymn Writer
  • Anna Julia Haywood Cooper and Elizabeth Evelyn Wright, African-American Educators
  • Elizabeth C. Clephane, Scottish Presbyterian Philanthropist and Hymn Writer

29 (John Cassian and John Climacus, Roman Catholic Monks and Spiritual Writers)

  • Bernhardt Severin Ingemann, Danish Lutheran Author and Hymn Writer
  • Edward Hopper, U.S. Presbyterian Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Jemima Thompson Luke, English Congregationalist Hymn Writer; and James Edmeston, Anglican Hymn Writer

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

Feast of Eric Liddell (February 22)   3 comments

Above:  Olympic Flag

Image in the Public Domain

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ERIC LIDDELL (1902-1945)

Scottish Missionary and Martyr

There are two ways to stand up for what one believes:  properly (as in sacrifice) and improperly, which is to say, obnoxiously.  The life of Eric Liddell demonstrates the former.

Eric Liddell was a son of missionary parents in China.  He and his brother began to attend Elthan College, Blackheath, in England, when Eric was six years old.  This was a boarding school for the children of missionaries.  Today’s saint excelled at athletics, such as rugby and track, at Elthan.

Liddell joined his brother at the University of Edinburgh in 1921.  There he continued to run and to play rugby.  He became a noted track runner, going to the 1924 Summer Olympic Games.  Liddell won the gold medal in the 400 meter race and the bronze medal in the 100 meter race.  He could have won a medal in the 100 meter race, his best event in college, but he did not participate because that race was scheduled for a Sunday.  Liddell kept the Sabbath.

Liddell graduated from the University of Edinburgh and spent most of the rest of his life (1925-1943) as a missionary in China.  Ordained in 1932, he married Florence Mackenzie two years later.  They had three children, all daughters.

The Presbyterian missionary family suffered many hardships, for this was the time of the Second Sino-Japanese War, which expanded to become the Pacific Theater of World War II.  Liddell’s wife and children sought and found safety in Canada after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, but he stayed behind to continue the good work.  The Japanese interned today’s saint at Weihsein in 1943.  There he died 1945, shortly before Allied forces liberated the camp.

The willing sacrifices of Eric Liddell brought glory to the Lord and Savior whose name he professed.  May we do likewise, each in our own way, as God leads us.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

OCTOBER 25, 2010 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST AND ANGELINA AND SARAH GRIMKE, ABOLITIONISTS

THE FEAST OF VINCENT PRICE, ACTOR

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A link to the Eric Liddell Centre:

http://www.ericliddell.org/

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God whose strength bears up as on mighty wings:  We rejoice in remembering your athlete and missionary, Eric Liddell, to whom you gave courage and resolution in contest and in captivity; and we pray that we may run with endurance the race that is set before us and persevere in patient witness, until we wear that crown of victory won for us by Jesus our Savior; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Isaiah 40:27-31

Psalm 18:21-25, 29-34

2 Peter 1:3-11

Mark 10:35-45

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Revised on December 5, 2016

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