St. Justin described the Mass as it was offered in the year 160 a.d.

Thursday, 6/1/27

Today we honor St. Justin, born around th year 100, he had a doctorate in the Greek Philosophies of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, and his high rank had him wearing a philosopher’s robe as his daily attire.

We owe so much to those early Greeks. In centuries when people were worshipping the stars and the idols they had carved, those Greeks had come to know that there was only one God, and that he rewarded men for their lives. Socrates had never done his own writing, but he contributed to us   the conviction that every human is born with the responsibility of finding truth.

An old Christian who fell in with him, convinced him that although he knew all about God, he didn’t know him personally. And that brought him around not only to receiving Baptism, but also to opening a school next to the Roman Forum where he not only prepared people for Baptism, but also kept track of measures by which Rome might damage Christianity. 

After a Roman senator alleged that Christians come together to worship a goat, Justin posted this account of our Sunday worship.

On that day which is called after the sun, all who are in the towns and in the country gather together for a communal celebration. And then the memoirs of the Apostles or the writings of the Prophets are read as much as time permits. After the reader has finished his task, the one presiding gives an address, earnestly admonishing his hearers to practice these beautiful teachings in their lives.
Then, together all stand and recite prayers, and bread and wine mixed with water are brought, and the president offers up prayers and thanksgivings (sic) as much as in him lies. The people chime in with Amen.
Then takes place the distribution to all attending of the things over which the thanksgiving (sic) had been spoken, and the deacons bring a portion to the absent.
Besides, those who are well to do give whatever they will. What is gathered is deposited with the one presiding who therewith helps widows and orphans.

Every pregnancy and birth is a miracle.

Wednesday, 5/31/17

Mary was a week into her pregnancy, and Elizabeth, six months into hers, and each of them gave voice to the miraculous nature of their child bearing, so forgive me for commenting on the non-miraculous aspects of their pregnancies .

P.B.S. features a show they call “Call the Midwife,” and in it they often let us see the actual birth of a child. And as ordinary as it is, I just can’t understand how it could be real. How can this new complete human have been living his or her own life inside a woman’s body?  

You and I came that way with our distinctive fingernails, and with our individual  taste in music. I find that more miraculous then anythng that happened in the Bible story.    

Our Lord's final prayer for his followers.

Tuesday, 5/30/17

Our daily Gospels from Easter on have been monologues by Jesus. However, rather than their being exact, word for word, quotations of Our Lord’s words, they have been John’s paraphrase of the kind of things he heard Jesus say.

In today’s Gospel John, who knew Jesus better than anyone, summarizes Our Lord’s final prayer before he left the Last Supper.

He prayed that we his followers might have eternal life. And he said, that by eternal life he meant more than just living on and on; it meant our truly knowing the Father, and the Son whom he has sent.    

Although all the world is his, and is his concern, yet in his final moments he wanted to pray for his  followers than God has turned over to him.

As he prepares to leave this world, he commissions his followers to carry on in his name.