Archive for the ‘January 24’ Category

Feast of the Ordination of Florence Li Tom-Oi (January 24)   Leave a comment

florence-li-tom-oi

Above:  Icon of Florence Li Tim-Oi

Image Source = Link

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FLORENCE LI TIM-OI (MAY 5, 1907-FEBRUARY 26, 1992)

First Female Priest in the Anglican Communion

Ordained on January 25, 1944

All civil rights issues are inherently theological and contingent upon the reality that all people bear the image of God.  Among these civil rights issues is the equality of men and women in the Church.  This remains a controversial argument, unfortunately.

Florence Li Tim-Oi was a pioneer in the continuing struggle for the equality of women in the Church.

Tim-Oi (“Much Beloved”) born in Hong Kong on May 5, 1907, chose the baptized name Florence, after Florence Nightingale.  She became a deaconess in 1931, studied theology for four years in Canton, and, on the Feast of the Ascension, 1941, became a deacon.  She served a parish in Macao.  Wartime circumstances meant that a priest could not come to the Portuguese colony regularly, so Bishop Ronald Owen Hall (in office 1932-1951) of the Anglican Diocese of Victoria (spanning Hong Kong and South China) licensed her to preside at the Holy Eucharist.  Finally, on January 25, 1944, in the village of Shui Hing, Hall ordained our saint a priest.  She was already functioning as one, he reasoned.  Due to the controversy regarding her priestly ordination Tim-Oi surrendered her license (yet not her Holy Orders) in 1946.  From 1947 to 1949 she served as the Rector of St. Barnabas Church, Hepui; Bishop Hall ordered that people refer to her as a priest.

In 1949 the People’s Republic of China supplanted the Republic of China on the mainland.  Tim-Oi continued her theological studies.  She also served and taught at the Cathedral of Our Savior, Guangzhou.  Then, in 1958, the People’s Republic closed all the churches.  Our saint had to work on a farm then in a factory.  She was able to resume her public ministry in 1979.

Tim-Oi, while visiting relatives in Canada in 1981, had an opportunity to exercise her priestly office in that country.  The Anglican Diocese of Montreal licensed her; the Diocese of Ontario followed suit two years later.  She died at Toronto on February 26, 1992.  She was 84 years old.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 24, 2016 COMMON ERA

THANKSGIVING DAY (U.S.A.)

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM COOKE AND BENJAMIN WEBB, ANGLICAN PRIESTS AND TRANSLATORS OF HYMNS

THE FEAST OF SAINTS ANDREW DUNG-LAC AND PETER THI, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIESTS AND MARTYRS IN VIETNAM

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Gracious God, we thank you for calling Florence Li Tim-Oi, much beloved daughter,

to be the first woman to exercise the office of a priest in our Communion:

By the grace of your Spirit, inspire us to follow her example,

serving your people with patience and happiness all our days,

and witnessing in every circumstance to our Savior Jesus Christ,

who lives and reigns with you and the same Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Numbers 11:16-17, 24-29

Psalm 99 or 27:1-9

1 Corinthians 3:5-11

John 4:31-38

A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  A Calendar of Commemorations (2016)

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Feast of the Martyrs of Podlasie (January 24)   Leave a comment

martyrs-of-pratulin

Above:  Icon of the Martyrs of Podlasie

Image in the Public Domain

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THE MARTYRS OF PODLASIE (SHOT JANUARY 14, 1874)

Also known as the Martyrs of Pratulin

The Russian Empire, at its height, contained 100 ethnic groups.  The empire, not encouraging multiculturalism, pursued a policy of Russification instead.  As part of this effort the government sought to convert Eastern Rite Roman Catholics within its realm to the Russian Orthodox Church and used force to make this happen.  Bishops and priests who refused to submit either went to Siberia or to prison.  This strategy left members of the laity to defend their faith.

On January 24, 1874, Russian soldiers entered the Polish village of Pratulin, in the region of Podlasie, to seize the parish church for the Russian Orthodox Church.  A crowd of villagers gathered to protest this action.  The military commander ordered them to disperse and threatened them if they disobeyed.  To encourage submission he ordered the fatal shooting of 13 laymen, who were singing hymns.   These martyrs were:

  1. Anicet Hryciuk (born in 1855),
  2. Bartlomiej Orypiuk (born in 1843),
  3. Daniel Karmasz (born in 1826),
  4. Filip Geryluk (born in 1830),
  5. Ignacy Franczuk (born in 1824),
  6. Jan Andrzejuk (born in 1848),
  7. Konstanty Bojko (born in 1826),
  8. Konstanty Lukaszuk (born in 1829),
  9. Lukasz Bojko (born in 1852),
  10. Maksym Hawryluk (born in 1840),
  11. Michal Wawryszuk (born in 1853),
  12. Onufry Wasyluk (born in 1853), and
  13. Wincenty Lewoniuk (born in 1849).

Then the soldiers buried the corpses without sacred rites.  The idea was to cause people to forget that these men had even lived.  The soldiers failed, obviously.  Pope John Paul II beatified the martyrs in 1996.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 24, 2016 COMMON ERA

THANKSGIVING DAY (U.S.A.)

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM COOKE AND BENJAMIN WEBB, ANGLICAN PRIESTS AND TRANSLATORS OF HYMNS

THE FEAST OF SAINTS ANDREW DUNG-LAC AND PETER THI, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIESTS AND MARTYRS IN VIETNAM

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Almighty God, by whose grace and power your holy Martyrs of Podlasie

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. Suranus of Sora (January 24)   Leave a comment

533-600

Above:  Italy, 533-600

Image in the Public Domain

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SAINT SURANUS OF SORA (DIED CIRCA 580)

Roman Catholic Abbot and Martyr

As St. Laurence of Rome (died in 258) understood, the poor are the treasures of the Church.  Roman imperial officials during the Valerian persecution (257-260) did not like that answer when they sought treasures to seize for the empire, so they roasted him alive on a gridiron.

St. Suranus of Sora came from the same theological cloth as St. Laurence.  St. Suranus was the abbot of the monastery at Sora, Italy.  The Lombards had invaded Italy and were seeking items to plunder.  Our saint gave away the physical treasures of the monastery to refugees, the real treasures of the Church.  When Lombards arrived at the monastery they found no loot, so they murdered the abbot out of spite.

Today the Roman Catholic Church remembers St. Suranus with honor.

Violent people, such as the Emperor Valerian’s forces in the time of St Laurence of Rome and the Lombards in the time of St. Suranus of Sora, have always been present.  The names, places, and timeframes vary, but sin and human nature remain constant.  The barbarians at the gate might be from the government or they might be non-state actors.  Regardless of their origin, they are agents of perfidy who might seem, in the short term, to have triumphed.  In reality, however, they are accountable to the God of Sts. Laurence and Suranus.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 23, 2016 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF JOHN KENNETH PFOHL, SR., U.S. MORAVIAN BISHOP; HIS WIFE, HARRIET ELIZABETH “BESSIE” WHITTINGTON PFOHL, U.S. MORAVIAN MUSICIAN; AND THEIR SON, JAMES CHRISTIAN PFOHL, SR., U.S. MORAVIAN MUSICIAN

THE FEAST OF CASPAR FRIEDRICH NACHTENHOFER, GERMAN LUTHERAN MUSICIAN, LITURGIST, AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINT CLEMENT OF ROME, BISHOP

THE FEAST OF SAINT COLUMBAN, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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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 St. Suranus of Sora,  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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Saints’ Days and Holy Days for January   Leave a comment

Snow in January

Image in the Public Domain

1 (EIGHTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS:  HOLY NAME OF JESUS)

  • World Day of Peace

2 (NINTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS: Johann Konrad Wilhelm Loehe, Bavarian Lutheran Minister and Coordinator of Domestic and Foreign Missions)

  • Narcissus, Argeus, and Marcellinus of Tomi, Roman Martyrs
  • Odilo of Cluny, Roman Catholic Abbot
  • Sabine Baring-Gould, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer

3 (TENTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS: William Alfred Passavant, Sr., U.S. Lutheran Minister, Humanitarian, and Evangelist)

  • Edward Caswall, Roman Catholic Priest and Hymn Writer
  • Edward Perronet, British Methodist Preacher
  • Gladys Aylward, Missionary in China and Taiwan

4 (ELEVENTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS: Felix Manz, First Anabaptist Martyr)

  • Elizabeth Ann Seton, Foundress of the American Sisters of Charity
  • Gregory of Langres, Terticus of Langres, Gallus of Clermont, Gregory of Tours, Avitus I of Clermont, Magnericus of Trier, and Gaugericus, Roman Catholic Bishops
  • Johann Ludwig Freydt, German Moravian Composer and Educator

5 (TWELFTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS: John Nepomucene Neumann, Roman Catholic Bishop of Philadelphia)

  • Antonio Lotti, Roman Catholic Musician and Composer
  • Genoveva Torres Morales, Foundress of the Congregation of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Holy Angels
  • Margaret Mackay, Scottish Hymn Writer

6 (EPIPHANY OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST)

7 (François Fénelon, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Cambrai)

  • Aldric of Le Mans, Roman Catholic Bishop
  • Angelia of Foligno, Penitent and Humanitarian
  • Lucian of Antioch, Roman Catholic Martyr

8 (Thorfinn of Hamar, Roman Catholic Bishop)

  • Archangelo Corelli, Roman Catholic Musician and Composer
  • Harriet Bedell, Episcopal Deaconess and Missionary
  • Nicolaus Copernicus and Galileo Galilei, Scientists

9 (Pepin of Landen, Itta of Metz, Their Relations, Amand, Austregisilus, and Sulpicius II of Bourges, Faithful Christians Across Generational Lines)

  • Anthony Mary Pucci, Roman Catholic Priest
  • Julia Chester Emery, Upholder of Missions
  • Philip II of Moscow, Metropolitan of Moscow and All Russia, and Martyr

10 (Theodosius the Cenobiarch, Roman Catholic Monk)

  • Charles William Everest, Episcopal Priest and Hymn Writer
  • John the Good, Roman Catholic Bishop of Milan
  • William Gay Ballantine, U.S. Congregationalist Minister, Educator, Scholar, Poet, and Hymn Writer

11 (Mary Slessor, Scottish Presbyterian Missionary in West Africa)

  • George Fox, Founder of the Religious Society of Friends
  • Miep Gies, Righteous Gentile
  • Paulinus of Aquileia, Roman Catholic Patriarch

12 (Benedict Biscop, Roman Catholic Abbot of Wearmouth)

  • Aelred of Hexham, Roman Catholic Abbot of Rievaulx
  • Henry Alford, Dean of Canterbury
  • Samuel Preiswerk, Swiss Reformed Minister and Hymn Writer

13 (Hilary of Poitiers, Roman Catholic Bishop of Poitiers, “Athanasius of the West,” and Hymn Writer; mentor of Martin of Tours, Roman Catholic Bishop of Tours)

  • Christian Keimann, German Lutheran Hymn Writer
  • Kentigern (Mungo), Roman Catholic Bishop of Glasgow
  • Marguerite Bourgeoys, Foundress of the Sisters of Notre Dame

14 (Macrina the Elder, Her Family, and Gregory of Nanzianzus the Younger)

  • Christian Keimann, German Lutheran Hymn Writer
  • Civil Rights Martyrs and Activists
  • Kristen Kvamme, Norwegian-American Hymn Writer and Translator

15 (MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR., CIVIL RIGHTS LEADER AND MARTYR)

16 (Pachomius the Great, Founder of Christian Communal Monasticism)

  • Greville Phillimore, English Priest, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Translator
  • Richard Meux Benson, Anglican Priest and Cofounder of the Society of St. John the Evangelist; Charles Chapman Grafton, Episcopal Priest, Cofounder of the Society of St. John the Evangelist, and Bishop of Fond du Lac; and Charles Gore, Anglican Bishop of Worcester, Birmingham, and Oxford; Founder of the Community of the Resurrection; Theologian; and Advocate for Social Justice and World Peace
  • Roberto de Nobili, Roman Catholic Missionary in India

17 (Antony of Egypt, Roman Catholic Abbot and Father of Western Monasticism)

  • Berard and His Companions, Roman Catholic Martyrs in Morocco
  • Edmund Hamilton Sears, Unitarian Pastor and Hymn Writer
  • Rutherford Birchard Hayes, President of the United States of America

18-25 (WEEK OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY)

18 (CONFESSION OF ST. PETER, APOSTLE)

19 (Sargent Shriver and Eunice Kennedy Shriver, Humanitarians)

  • Caesarius of Arles, Roman Catholic Bishop, and Caesaria of Arles, Roman Catholic Abbess
  • Henry Augustine Collins, Anglican then Roman Catholic Priest and Hymn Writer
  • Richard Rolle, English Roman Catholic Spiritual Writer

20 (Fabian, Bishop of Rome and Martyr)

  • Deicola and Gall, Roman Catholic Monks, and Othmar, Roman Catholic Abbot at St. Gallen
  • Euthymius the Great and Theoctistus, Roman Catholic Abbots
  • Harriet Auber, Anglican Hymn Writer

21 (Mirocles of Milan and Epiphanius of Pavia, Roman Catholic Bishops)

  • Alban Roe and Thomas Reynolds, Roman Catholic Priests and Martyrs
  • Gaspar del Bufalo, Founder of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood
  • John Yi Yon-on, Roman Catholic Catechist and Martyr in Korea

22 (Syncletica of Alexandria, Desert Mother)

  • Adelard of Corbie, Roman Catholic Monk
  • John Julian, Anglican Priest, Hymn Writer, and Hymnologist
  • Vincent Pallotti, Founder of the Pallotines

23 (John the Almsgiver, Roman Catholic Patriarch of Alexandria)

  • Caspar Neumann, German Lutheran Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Phillips Brooks, Episcopal Bishop of Massachusetts
  • Thomas A. Dooley, Physician and Humanitarian

24 (Ordination of Florence Li-Tim-Oi, First Female Priest in the Anglican Communion)

  • Angela Merici, Founder of the Company of St. Ursula
  • Martyrs of Podlasie, 1874
  • Suranus of Sora, Roman Catholic Abbot and Martyr

25 (CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL, APOSTLE)

26 (TIMOTHY, TITUS, AND SILAS, COWORKERS OF THE APOSTLE PAUL)

27 (Allen William Chatfield, Anglican Priest, Hymn Writer, and Translator)

  • Jerome, Paula of Rome, Eustochium, Blaesilla, Marcella, and Lea of Rome
  • John Cosin, Anglican Bishop of Cosin
  • William Jones, Anglican Priest and Musician

28 (Albert the Great and his pupil, Thomas Aquinas, Roman Catholic Theologians)

  • Charles Kingsley, Anglican Priest, Novelist, and Hymn Writer
  • Joseph Barnby, Anglican Church Musician and Composer
  • Richard Frederick Littledale, Anglican Priest and Translator of Hymns

29 (LYDIA, DORCAS, AND PHOEBE, COWORKERS OF THE APOSTLE PAUL)

30 (Lesslie Newbigin, Missionary and Theologian)

  • Bathildas, Queen of France
  • Frederick Oakeley, Anglican then Roman Catholic Priest
  • Genesius I of Clermont and Praejectus of Clermont, Roman Catholic Bishops, and Amarin, Roman Catholic Abbot

31 (Charles Frederick Mackenzie, Anglican Bishop of Central Africa)

  • Henry Twells, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer
  • Mary Lundie Duncan, Scottish Presbyterian Hymn Writer
  • Menno Simons, Mennonite Leader


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

Feast of St. Angela Merici (January 24)   Leave a comment

Above:  St. Angela Merici 

Image in the Public Domain

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SAINT ANGELA MERICI (1474-1540)

Founder of the Company of St. Ursula

Born at Lake Garda, Italy, St. Angela Merici became an orphan.  She spent the rest of her life caring for orphans and the sick, and education poor girls.

St. Angela Merici became a Franciscan tertiary at age 15.  As a Franciscan she taught children at Brescia.  Later the saint made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land.  Legend has it that she lost her sight on that pilgrimage but regained it on a return visit; I am skeptical of this tale.  It might be true, but who knows for sure?

The saint founded the Company of St. Ursula (the Urseline nuns) in 1535.  She presided over them as they cared for the sick and educated poor girls.  Pope Paul III recognized the order in 1544.  The order continues the good work.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

SEPTEMBER 13, 2010 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF ST. JOHN CHRYSOSTOM, BISHOP OF CONSTANTINOPLE

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A Prayer from Lives of the Saints:

Lord, let St. Angela never cease commending us to your kindness.  By always imitating her charity and prudence may we succeed in keeping your teachings and preserving your morals.  Amen.

Readings I Have Selected:

Micah 6:6-8

Psalm 82

James 1:26-2:7

Matthew 25:31-46

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Revised on November 21, 2016

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Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (January 18-25)   Leave a comment

Above:  St. Barnabas Episcopal-Lutheran Worshiping Community, Jefferson City, Tennessee

(Their website is here:  http://stbarnabas.etdiocese.net/)

Let Us Emphasize Our Common Ground and Build On It

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From Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), the hymnal of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America:

Isaiah 2:2-4

Psalm 122

Ephesians 4:1-6

John 17:15-23

God our Father, your Son Jesus Christ prayed that his followers might be one.  Make all Christians one with him as he is one with you, so that in peace and concord we may carry to the world the message of your love, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.  Amen.

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Now, for my thoughts….

We Christians have divided ourselves into competing theological and liturgical tribes since the earliest decades of the Jesus movement.  For confirmation of this, read the New Testament epistles.  Sometimes these divisions are silly or based on ego gratification.  Other times, however, the matters are weightier.  Yet the tragedy of schism remains, even after stated issues which people used to justify the schism have become moot points or ceased to points of contention.  Inertia preserves a high degree of divisiveness within Christianity.

Sometimes schisms remain insurmountable.  Yet this fact should not prevent Christians of good will from reaching across boundaries to identify and build upon common ground, to do something positive and for the glory of God together.  I do not expect the Anabaptists and Roman Catholics to reconcile, but they can cooperate.  Last Sunday afternoon I listened to a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) radio interview with a Mennonite pastor who maintains a close faith-based relationship with nearby Catholic monks, often praying with them.

And I believe that when two or more denominations cease to have good reasons to remain separate they should open negotiations to unite organically.  But when issues, such as baptismal theology, prevent a merger, the groups can still cooperate on other matters.  We Christians have more in common with each other than not.  May we build on that.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 11, 2010

THE FEAST OF ST. BARNABAS THE APOSTLE

THE FEAST OF THE REVEREND VERNON JOHNS, U.S. CIVIL RIGHTS PIONEER