Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Feast of Saints Bede the Venerable, Gregory VII and Mary Magdalene de Pazzi.

The Feast of St Bede the Venerable, Pope St Gregory VII & St Magdalene de Pazzi. 

"Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed saying: “I pray not only for these, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me. 

"And I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me. 

"Father, they are your gift to me. I wish that where I am they also may be with me, that they may see my glory that you gave me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world.

"Righteous Father, the world also does not know you, but I know you, and they know that you sent me. I made known to them your name and I will make it known, that the love with which you loved me may be in them and I in them.” (John 17: 20 - 26)

Thursday May 25th in the 7th Week of Easter is the feast of:

St Bede the Venerable, Pope St Gregory VII & St Magdalene de Pazzi. 

  1. St Bede the Venerable (672 - 735). English Benedictine Priest and Doctor of the Church. St Bede worked hard to help the Church in England grow stronger in faith and numbers. He accomplished this through his application of the study of Scriptures and History to Evangelization. He was a brilliant light in England of his day.

  1.  St Gregory VII, (+ 1085),Pope and  Monk of Cluny. Gregory incurred the wrath of Emperor Henry IV by fighting against the evils of Lay Investiture. The Emperor exiled him to Salerno where he died.

3. St Mary Magdalene de Pazzi (1566 - 1607), Italian Carmelite from Florence. Great ascetic. Worked untiringly for the renewal of the Church. 

In our key Scripture for today, Jesus prayed for Church Unity.

He wants Christians to be of one heart and one mind so that the world would look at Christians and see Jesus in us.  

The gold standard for this unity is: "Just as you [Father] are in me and I am in you, so they will be in us, and the world will believe you sent me."

Today there may be more than 40,000 denominations in the world.  Each with its credo and liturgy. You may wonder: What type of answer is this to Jesus' prayer for the unity of His disciples. This is surely a mystery of Divine Providence.

One of the greatest obstacles to Unity is that a sizable number of denominations have no desire for unity and may not even believe in the type of Unity that Jesus prayed for His Church. 

Number one obstacle to Unity without doubt is Sin. Sin exists in all churches. Let us pray that the Holy Spirit deals  with sins in the churches. Can we hope to see visible unity of the churches in our lifetime? 

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