Tuesday, June 29, 2021

The Feast of the First Martyrs of the Roman Church.

"God heard the boy's [Ismael] voice, and God’s angel called to Hagar from heaven: “What is the matter, Hagar? Do not fear; God has heard the boy’s voice in this plight of his. Get up, lift up the boy and hold him by the hand; for I will make of him a great nation.”  Then God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water. She went and filled the skin with water, and then let the boy drink." (Genesis 21: 17 - 19).

Wednesday 30th June 2021, in the 13th Week in Ordinary Time is the
feast of the First Holy Martyrs of the Holy Roman Church. In 64 AD, the vicious Emperor Nero set Rome on fire. To escape the wrath of the Romans, he blamed the Christians. Then he ordered all Christians arrested and be put to death. We celebrate today the witness of the multitude of Christians who perished in the persecution of Emperor Nero.

Abraham's concubine, Hagar was driven away from home at the insistence of Sarah. When their food and water ran out in the desert, Hagar and her son Ismael cried. Ismael: means "Ishma-El: God hears"

The Lord hears their cry.

This may be the message of the first Reading from Genesis.
"When the poor one called out, the Lord heard, and from all his distress he saved him. The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them." (Psalm 34 - Responsorial).

What a great confidence we have in prayer to know that God hears us when we cry to Him in our distress.
The First Martyrs of the Roman Church were probably the first large group of martyrs who witnessed to Jesus, the faithful and true Martyr. It was a big spectacle for the Romans who were gathered in the Nero Circus to witness the sport.
Tertulian said: "The blood of martyrs is the seed of Christianity." Rome became chosen by God to be the seat of the universal Church.

Mary, Queen of Martyrs tells us the power of the Blood of Jesus.
"The Blood of my Son brings purity and healing and new life wherever it flows. Implore the power of the precious Blood over yourself and over all priests. Whenever you are asked to intercede for souls, invoke the power of the precious Blood over them, and present them to the Father covered with the Blood of the Lamb." (IN SINU JESU).

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirst.blogspot.com

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