Monday, 30 September 2013

Month of the Holy Rosary

Lady Cloister
----- Forwarded Message -----Holy Rosary and Sr. Teresa
Mary, hand to hand

Dear Father Donald,
Here I am again up to the feast of St. Teresa and the month of the Holy Rosary. The Rosary was always so much part of our upbringing in the family
 . . .
Best wishes - Sr. Teresa

Month of the Holy Rosary

October, 2013 - Overview for the Month
The month of October is dedicated to the Holy Rosary. The Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary is celebrated on October 7. October falls during the liturgical season known as Ordinary Time, which is represented by the liturgical color green.
The Holy Father's Intentions for the Month of October 2013
Pope's motto, Miserando atque Eligendo [By Having Mercy and by Choosing Him]
General: That those feeling so crushed by life that they wish to end it may sense the nearness of God's love.
Missionary: That the celebration of World Mission Day may help all Christians realize that we are not only receivers but proclaimers of God's word. (See also
Feasts for October
The feasts on the General Roman Calendar celebrated during the month of October are:
Focus of the Liturgy
All the Gospels for the Sundays in October 2013 are taken from Year C, Cycle 1, the Gospel of St. Luke.
October 6th - 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Our Lord compares faith to a mustard seed.
October 13th - 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time
This Gospel tells the story of the ten lepers Jesus healed.
October 20th - 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time
The Gospel tells the parable of the persistent widow and the unjust judge.
October 27th - 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time
The Gospel tells the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector.
Highlights of the Month
During October, as in all of Ordinary Time (formerly known as Time After Pentecost), the Liturgy does not focus on one particular mystery of Christ, but views the mystery of Christ in all its aspects. We follow the life of Christ through the Gospels, and focus on the teachings and parables of Jesus and what it means for each of us to be a follower of Christ. During Ordinary Time we can concentrate more on the saints and imitate their holiness as Christ's followers.
This month the main liturgical feasts are St. Thérèse (October 1), Guardian Angels (October 2), St. Francis of Assisi (October 4), St. Faustina (October 5), Our Lady of the Rosary (October 7), St. Teresa of Jesus (October 15), St. Hedwig and St. Margaret Mary(October 16)St. Ignatius of Antioch (October 17), St. Luke (October 18), St. Isaac JoguesSt. John de Brébeuf and Companions (October 19), St. Anthony Mary Claret (October 24) andSts. Simon and Jude (October 28).
The feasts of St. Bruno (October 6) and St. Paul of the Cross (October 20) are superseded by the Sunday liturgy.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Feast of Sts. Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, Archangels

Congratulations to Fr. Edward, O.P. 
on the Jubilee, 
anniversary of Ordination 
on the Feast of Sts. of Michael, Gabriel and Raphael.

The name of the archangel Michael means, in Hebrew, who is like unto God? and he is also known as "the prince of the heavenly host."
He is usually pictured as a strong warrior, dressed in armor and wearing sandals. His name appears in Scripture four times, twice in the Book of Daniel, and once each in the Epistle of St. Jude and the Book of Revelation. From Revelation we learn of the battle in heaven, with St. Michael and his angels combatting Lucifer and the other fallen angels (or devils). We invoke St. Michael to help us in our fight against Satan; to rescue souls from Satan, especially at the hour of death; to be the champion of the Jews in the Old Testament and now Christians; and to bring souls to judgment.​...

Ordinary Time: September 29th Feast of Sts. Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, Archangels

St. Michael

St. Michael

Old Calendar: Dedication of the Basilica of St. Michael the Archangel (Michaelmas Day)
The liturgy celebrates the feast of these three archangels who are venerated in the tradition of the Church. Michael (Who is like God?) was the archangel who fought against Satan and all his evil angels, defending all the friends of God. He is the protector of all humanity from the snares of the devil. Gabriel (Strength of God) announced to Zachariah the forthcoming birth of John the Baptist, and to Mary, the birth of Jesus. His greeting to the Virgin, "Hail, full of grace," is one of the most familiar and frequent prayers of the Christian people. Raphael (Medicine of God) is the archangel who took care of Tobias on his journey.
According to the 1962 Missal of Bl. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the feast of St. Michael. St. Gabriel is observed on March 24 and St. Raphael on October 24.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches us that, "[T]he existence of the spiritual, non-corporeal beings that Sacred Scripture usually calls "angels" is a truth of faith. The witness of Scripture is as clear as the unanimity of Tradition."
Angels are pure, created spirits. The name angel means servant or messenger of God. Angels are celestial or heavenly beings, on a higher order than human beings. Angels have no bodies and do not depend on matter for their existence or activity. They are distinct from saints, which men can become. Angels have intellect and will, and are immortal. They are a vast multitude, but each is an individual person. Archangels are one of the nine choirs of angels listed in the Bible. In ascending order, the choirs or classes are 1) Angels, 2) Archangels, 3) Principalities, 4) Powers, 5) Virtues, 6) Dominations, 7) Thrones, 8) Cherubim, and 9) Seraphim.

This day is referred to as "Michaelmas" in many countries and is also one of the harvest feast days. In England this is one of the "quarter days", which was marked by hiring servants, electing magistrates, and beginning of legal and university terms. This day also marks the opening of the deer and other large game hunting season. In some parts of Europe, especially Germany, Denmark, and Austria, a special wine called "Saint Michael's Love" (Michelsminne) is drunk on this day. The foods for this day vary depending on nationality. In the British Isles, for example, goose was the traditional meal for Michaelmas, eaten for prosperity, France has waffles or Gaufres and the traditional fare in Scotland used to be St. Michael's Bannock (Struan Micheil) — a large, scone-like cake. In Italy, gnocchi is the traditional fare.
Patron: Against temptations; against powers of evil; artists; bakers; bankers; battle; boatmen; cemeteries; coopers; endangered children; dying; Emergency Medical Technicians; fencing; grocers; hatmakers; holy death; knights; mariners; mountaineers; paramedics; paratroopers; police officers; radiologists; sailors; the sick; security forces; soldiers; against storms at sea; swordsmiths; those in need of protection; Brussels, Belgium; Caltanissett, Sicily; Cornwall, England; Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee Florida; England; Germany; Archdiocese of Mobile, Alabama; Papua, New Guinea; Puebla, Mexico; San Miguel de Allende, Mexico; Sibenik, Croatia; Archdiocese of Seattle, Washington; Diocese of Springfield, Massachusetts.
Symbols: Angel with wings; dressed in armour; lance and shield; scales; shown weighing souls; millstone; piercing dragon or devil; banner charged with a dove; symbolic colors orange or gold.

St Gabriel
St. Gabriel
 St. Gabriel's name means "God is my strength". Biblically he appears three times as a messenger. He had been sent to Daniel to explain a vision concerning the Messiah. He appeared to Zachary when he was offering incense in the Temple, to foretell the birth of his son, St. John the Baptist. St. Gabriel is most known as the angel chosen by God to be the messenger of the Annunciation, to announce to mankind the mystery of the Incarnation.
The angel's salutation to our Lady, so simple and yet so full of meaning, Hail Mary, full of grace, has become the constant and familiar prayer of all Christian people.
Patron: Ambassadors; broadcasting; childbirth; clergy; communications; diplomats; messengers; philatelists; postal workers; public relations; radio workers; secular clergy; stamp collectors; telecommunications; Portugal; Archdiocese of Seattle, Washington.
Symbols: Archangel; sceptre and lily; MR or AM shield; lantern; mirror; olive branch; scroll with words Ave Maria Gratia Plena; Resurrection trumpet; shield; spear; lily; symbolic colors, silver or blue.

St. Raphael
St. Raphael
Our knowledge of the Archangel Raphael comes to us from the book of Tobit. His mission as wonderful healer and fellow traveller with the youthful Tobias has caused him to be invoked for journeys and at critical moments in life. Tradition also holds that Raphael is the angel that stirred the waters at the healing sheep pool in Bethesda. His name means "God has healed".
Patron: Blind; bodily ills; counselors; druggists; eye problems; guardian angels; happy meetings; healers; health inspectors; health technicians; love; lovers; mental illness; nurses; pharmacists; physicians; shepherds; against sickness; therapists; travellers; young people; young people leaving home for the first time; Archdiocese of Dubuque, Iowa; Archdiocese of Seattle, Washington.
Symbols: Staff; wallet and fish; staff and gourd; archangel; young man carrying a staff; young man carrying a fish; walking with Tobias; holding a bottle or flask; symbolic colors, gray or yellow.
Things to Do:
This is a good feast to learn more about the angels. Children especially are fascinated by these celestial beings. The best place to start is the Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 328-336 to see the teachings of the Church on angels. John Paul II also did a Catechesis on the Angels during his General Audiences from July 9 to August 20, 1986.
Find the passages in the Bible about angels, in particular the passages about Michael, Gabriel and Raphael.
Read the section on angels in the Directory on Popular Piety and Liturgy. The document examines the doctrine and devotions of the angels. Devotion to angels is good, but also can have deviations.
Devotion to the Holy Angels gives rise to a certain form of the Christian life which is characterized by:
devout gratitude to God for having placed these heavenly spirits of great sanctity and dignity at the service of man;
an attitude of devotion deriving from the knowledge of living constantly in the presence of the Holy Angels of God — serenity and confidence in facing difficult situations, since the Lord guides and protects the faithful in the way of justice through the ministry of His Holy Angels. Among the prayers to the Guardian Angels the Angele Dei is especially popular, and is often recited by families at morning and evening prayers, or at the recitation of the Angelus.
217. Popular devotion to the Holy Angels, which is legitimate and good, can, however, also give rise to possible deviations:
when, as sometimes can happen, the faithful are taken by the idea that the world is subject to demiurgical struggles, or an incessant battle between good and evil spirits, or Angels and daemons, in which man is left at the mercy of superior forces and over which he is helpless; such cosmologies bear little relation to the true Gospel vision of the struggle to overcome the devil, which requires moral commitment, a fundamental option for the Gospel, humility and prayer;
when the daily events of life, which have nothing or little to do with our progressive maturing on the journey towards Christ are read schematically or simplistically, indeed childishly, so as to ascribe all setbacks to the devil and all success to the Guardian Angels. The practice of assigning names to the Holy Angels should be discouraged, except in the cases of Gabriel, Raphael and Michael whose names are contained in Holy Scripture.
Memorize the prayer to St. Michael the Archangel. Although no longer formally recited after Mass, our Holy Father John Paul II has encouraged us to recite this prayer daily. Read about this prayer. Here is the Regina Caeli message from April 24, 1994 during which the pope encouraged this prayer.
In honor of St. Gabriel, Learn the Angelus and recite it daily. Traditionally, the prayer is prayed at the 6:00 and 12:00 hours (am and pm). There is a partial indulgence attached to those who pray this prayer.
Read the Book of Tobit for the story of St. Raphael helping Tobit and Tobias.
Make some recipes related to Michaelmas. Of special mention is the St. Michael Bannock from Scotland, roast goose and stuffing from Britain, waffles from France, and roast duck from Germany or France, gnocchi from Italy. Blackberries, apples and carrots also play a large role on this feast in various countries. Other ideas: make an angel food cake, devil's food cake or angel hair pasta. Decorate with white, symbolizing the angels, or use other symbolic colors (see above). Non-dessert items: deviled eggs, deviled meats, etc.
Try to find the Michaelmas daisy, a purple aster, to use for decoration. It also comes in other colors, including white, but purple is the most popular. It usually blooms in late summer until October. The official name is Aster novi-belgii, but is also known as New York aster. If you find plants or seeds to plan for next year's garden. This site has photos and gardening information for the Michaelmas daisy.
Folklore in the British Isles suggests that Michaelmas day is the last day that blackberries can be picked. It is said that when St. Michael expelled Lucifer, the devil, from heaven, he fell from the skies and landed in a prickly blackberry bush. Satan cursed the fruit, scorched them with his fiery breath, and stamped and spat on them, so that they would be unfit for eating. A Traditional Irish proverb says:
On Michaelmas Day the devil puts his foot on the blackberries.
If you have access to blackberries, make this the last picking and eating. Perhaps make a blackberry pie? See Michaelmas Pie for a great recipe.

Friday, 27 September 2013

COMMENT: Exlusive interview with Pope Francis - extract

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: William ...
To: Donald. . . . .
Sent: Friday, 27 September 2013, 19:56
Subject: Exlusive interview with Pope Francis - full text

Dear Father Donald,
A newsletter from a parish priest in Carlisle (would that I were nearer to the parish) has provided a link to the full text of the exclusive interview with Pope Francis of which I have heretofore only obtained snippets.
Almost everyday I discover the great extent of the internet!

I always felt my motto, Miserando atque Eligendo [By Having Mercy and by Choosing Him], was very true for me.”
The motto is taken from the Homilies of Bede the Venerable, who writes in his comments on the Gospel story of the calling of Matthew: “Jesus saw a publican, and since he looked at him with feelings of love and chose him, he said to him, ‘Follow me.’” The pope adds: “I think the Latin gerund miserando is impossible to translate in both Italian and Spanish. I like to translate it with another gerund that does not exist: misericordiando[“mercy-ing”].
"The Calling of Saint Matthew," Caravaggio
“That finger of Jesus, pointing at Matthew. That’s me. I feel like him. Like Matthew.” Here the pope becomes determined, as if he had finally found the image he was looking for: “It is the gesture of Matthew that strikes me: he holds on to his money as if to say, ‘No, not me! No, this money is mine.’ Here, this is me, a sinner on whom the Lord has turned his gaze. And this is what I said when they asked me if I would accept my election as pontiff.” Then the pope whispers in Latin: “I am a sinner, but I trust in the infinite mercy and patience of our Lord Jesus Christ, and I accept in a spirit of penance.”    
Pope Francis continues his reflection and says, jumping to another topic: “I do not know Rome well. I know a few things. These include the Basilica of St. Mary Major; I always used to go there. I know St. Mary Major, St. Peter’s...but when I had to come to Rome, I always stayed in [the neighborhood of] Via della Scrofa. From there I often visited the Church of St. Louis of France, and I went there to contemplate the painting of ‘The Calling of St. Matthew,’ by Caravaggio.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Cushley and the voice from the deep!

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: William . . .
To: Donald . . . .
Sent: Wednesday, 25 September 2013, 20:01
Subject: Re: Cushley and the voice from the deep!

Dear Father Donald,
Thank you! You experienced a wonderful event in the life of the Edinburgh diocese. How well Archbishop Cushley spoke to the young people, heart warming words for the ears of those of us out-of-age! I delighted in his words of approach to this essential role. It is a remarkably welcoming and open face I see on the attachment you sent (so often the faces of high ranking prelates reveal only their diplomat side). You will have enjoyed having him amongst you, and will delight in his friendship.

New archbishop brings Papal message to the young

After his Episcopal ordination this morning, Mgr Leo Cushley said that Pope Francis has asked him to take special care of the young people of St Andrews and Edinburgh
The newly ordained Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh expressed a special plea this morning asking young Catholics to carry the Gospel forwards to the next generation.
 “He told me to have a special care for all of you, and to make sure that you have the best preparation for your adult lives from our Catholic schools,” Archbishop Cushley is expected to say.
“You are the future —you are our future fathers and mothers, priests and sisters. Sitting among you are the next priests of this Archdiocese: you will stand here too one day and guide this Church. This is your greatest challenge—don’t be afraid to become priests, to pick up where we will leave off and to give the Gospel, entire and whole, to the next generation.
“Dear young people, all our eyes are fixed on you, for you are our future and our hope! … May God bless all of you abundantly!”
The new archbishop, originally from Motherwell Diocese, was consecrated by Cardinal James Harvey, from Wisconsin, US, Mgr Cushley’s first superior in the Secretariat of State and long-time colleague in the diplomatic service, at St Mary’s Cathedral in Edinburgh.

Cardinal Harvey, who himself worked as a deacon in a parish Edinburgh in the summer of 1974, has said he was very happy to be back in Edinburgh for such a special occasion.
“I am delighted and honoured to part of this historic moment in the life of the Church of St Andrews and Edinburgh,” the cardinal said. “Archbishop Cushley brings many gifts of mind and heart to his new office. I am convinced that these gifts, suitable for prudent pastoral governance, will redound to the good of this archdiocese and beyond.”
The cardinal’s co-consecrators today will be Archbishop Antonio Mennini, Apostolic Nuncio to Great Britain, and Archbishop Philip Tartaglia of Glasgow, in his capacity as Apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh.
Episcopal ordination of Leo Cushley
at St. Mary's Cathedral, St Andrews and Edinburgh

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

St. Matthew, Jean Danielou

Night Office
Cardinal Jean Danielou, further inspiration of St. Matthew from previous Posts.
  • Jean-Guenolé-Marie Daniélou, S.J., was a Jesuit theologian, historian, Cardinal
  • Wednesday, 25 September 2013  Twenty-fifth week in Ordinary Time

    First Reading
    Isaiah 7:1-17
    Responsory              Is 7:13; 2 Srm 7:8.16
    Listen, House of David: The Lord of his own accord will give you a sign: + The maiden is with child, and she shall give birth to a son whom she will call Immanuel.
    V. Say to my servant David: Your family and your kingdom shall be established forever in my sight; your throne shall endure for all time.+ The maiden ...
    Second Reading
    From The Infancy Narratives by Jean Danielou
    The Infancy Narratives, 47-52.
    The Inspiration of
    Saint Matthew

    One of the most characteristic preoccupations of Matthew is to show the events of Jesus' life as the fulfilment of Old Testament prophecies. That is what he is doing when he quotes the prophecy in Isaiah 7:14 that a virgin will conceive and bear a son, after explaining: All this took place to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet.

    Now if we look at the text from Isaiah, we find that the prophecy, addressed to a king descended from David, Ahaz, begins: Hear, then, 0 house of David, and its purpose is to foretell the birth of a descendant of David who will be a "sign." Therefore, the prophecy essentially supports the basic statement contained in the episode, namely that Jesus is of the house of David. Indeed, that is its prin inspirationfrocipal purpose. But furthermore, the prophecy contains one verse that links it extremely well with a major element in the story - the verse which says that the child to come will be the son of a woman whom the Hebrew text designates by a word that could mean "virgin," and which the Greek text deliberately translates so. That is why it is that verse that Matthew quotes. But he uses it as a reference to the prophecy as a whole. The text makes this quite clear in saying that it is all this, all the events in question, and therefore, first and foremost, the filiation to David, that took place to fulfil the prophecy. The connection between the almah, virgin theme and the virgin birth is only secondary. It does not base faith in the virgin birth on the fact that it is the fulfilment of a prophecy: on the contrary, it provides a Christian exegesis of the prophecy in the light of the virgin birth. This was something specially characteristic of the targumin of the Judeo-Christians, who, because of their legitimate certainty that Christ was the fulfilment of the Old Testament, felt it their right to project onto the Old Testament the affirmations of the New.
    This has some very important consequences. Whereas all too many exegetes like to see the infancy narratives as myths presented in the guise of history, our analysis leads us to precisely the opposite conclusion. The essential things in our text are the historical statements, first among them the fact of Jesus' being adopted by Joseph despite the virgin birth. And it is these statements that are so rich in theological consequences, for they make it clear that Jesus is both Son of God and Son of David.
    Responsory              Mt 1:20-23
    Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because she has conceived through the Holy Spirit. + She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.
    V. All this happened to fulfill the words spoken by the Lord though the prophet: A virgin will conceive and bear a son, and he shall be called Emmanuel, which means God is with us. + She will bear ...

    Tuesday, 24 September 2013

    St. Fulgentius. Monastic Office of Vigils,

    Tuesday, 24 September 2013
    Tuesday of the Twenty-fifth week in Ordinary Time
    Saint Fulgentius of Ruspe

    Second Reading
    From a sermon by Fulgentius of Ruspe
    Saint Fulgentius of Ruspe, Sermon 5, 5-6: CCL 91A, 992-923

    When our Lord gave the commandment of love for one's enemies, his hearers may have found it bitter: I ask you, therefore  to taste the sweetness of his promise to those who obey. Let this sweet delight abide in your heart, and the difficulty of that bitterness will be surmounted. People who love their enemies and do good to those who hate them will be children of God!

    The blessed Apostle reveals the reward these children of God are to receive: The Spirit himself bears witness to our spirit that we are children of God. But if we are children then we are heirs as well: heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ. Pay heed, then, Christians; pay heed, children of God; pay heed, heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ: If you wish to receive your patrimony, love not only your friends but also your enemies. Deny no one the love which all the righteous have as a common possession. Let everyone have it at once, and so that you may have it more fully, bestow it upon good and bad alike. Such a sharing of good things in common is by no means an earthly virtue: it is heavenly. There is therefore nothing in it to restrict those who share in it.

    Love increases as cupidity decreases; moreover, love never fails to free those whom worldly desires do not hold captive. Love is a gift of God. As the Apostle says: God's love has flooded our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. Avarice is a snare of the devil, and not only a snare but a sword: by means of it he captures poor wretches and puts them to death. Love is the root of all good; avarice is the root of all evil.

    Avarice brings ceaseless torment because it is never satisfied with its booty. Love, on the other hand, brings joy because the more it increases the more generously it gives. Consequently, while their acquisitions impoverish those who desire evil, charitable givers are enriched by their gifts. The greedy are troubled, seeking revenge for injuries inflicted on them; the charitable are at peace, delighting to forgive any harm done to them. The avaricious avoid practicing the works of mercy, while the charitable perform them cheerfully. The object of the avaricious is to injure their neighbors; the charitable do them no harm. By self-exaltation the greedy sink down into hell; by humbling themselves the charitable ascend to heaven.

    But when shall I ever be able fittingly to sing the praises of love, which is not solitary in heaven or bereft on earth? For on earth it is fed by the words of God; in heaven it is filled by the words of God. On earth it has the company of friends, in heaven the fellowship of angels. It toils in the world; it finds rest in heaven.

    Responsory           1 In 4:16.7
    God is love, and those who live in love live in God, + and God lives
    in them.
    V. Let us love one another, for love comes from God and knows God. + And God lives ...

    Saint Matthew, Fr. Edward O.P., Sermon

    Dear Fr. Edward,
    Thank you for the welcome St. Matthew critical explanation of his Gospel
    It is all the more illuminating after The Times caption to the article "The Cups Runneth over at the Actors' Last Supper", the photograph called Actor's Last Supper. See the previous Website Post. 
    To navigate your study, I have emboldened the name "Matthew".
    You are kept busy, D.G.

    ----- Forwarded Message -----
    From: edward ... (Google Drive). . .
    To: Donald . . .
    Sent: Saturday, 21 September 2013, 17:05
    Subject: Saint Matthew 2013

    Attached: Saint Matthew 2013
    Dear Donald,
    . . . . .
    Last evening I prepared a rather long sermon on Saint Matthew. It begins with a comparison with the Gospel of Saint Mark and includes a summary of the whole. I wonder whether this would interest you. Recent poems are on the Concordia refloating and the battles which have raged in the Christian Village near to Damascus (Maa'lula). I will look over them to see whether there is something more intensely religious.

    Blessings from
    fr Edward O.P.

    Saint Matthew 2013
            When one considers the gospel of Saint Mark one finds that it is inspired narrative. The first ten chapters pass from the preaching of John the Baptist, followed immediately by John´s baptism of Jesus to the visit to Jericho. The characteristic of the gospel, which was the first full length gospel. complete in itself, is the vividness of many of the accounts. Peter´s observations served him well, and Mark brought them together in such a simple way which was destined to be an authoritative compilation of material, meant to be read at the Liturgy, and to be studied privately. It was transparently honest like Peter himself, and intensely perceptive like Peter at his best. It is not encombred with a thematic; there is no such linkage inevitably artificial, but it does take us into the quality of the relationships of which Jesus was the form and developer. Whatever preconceptions they had about an account of the following of Jesus, the listeners were struck by the miracles carried out arising from compassion. The miracles and the discourses of instruction which were carried out in a manner at once homely and exalted were an opening of his heart, with the depths of its love and its strength. The transcendent theme was pursued more implicitly. Peter saw Jesus as the Son of God with prophetic and healing gifts both intended to raise men up to from where they had fallen, and to bind up their wounds of soul and body inflicted by life.
            But when we turn from this Gospel, all of whose qualities are arguments for its primacy, and turn to that of Matthew there is an explicit return time and again to a thematic Matthew (in Hebrew, Levi) to a more than cherubic arrow entering the heart of Saint Teresa of Avila, was immediate. His whole intelligence cooperated with this and accepted it with total generosity. Quickly he arranged a banquet so that his fellow taxmen could meet Jesus; they were fascinated by the force of his conversion which showed them that here was a way of return at a higher level.
      which is the relationship between Judaism and the spiritual and personal gospel of Jesus Christ, at the same time divine and human, where the human was an introduction to the Kingdom of Heaven establishing itself amongst the Jewish people in a way which was a revelation of a saving transcendence: the preaching and healing was an introduction to this, an opening to greater heights and depths in which Christ was the introducer, raiser and revealer. That was evident in the sudden and unexpected vocation which he received in his treasury of taxes, his place of work, as the definitive call of the apostles began when, having met some of them in the entourage of John, Jesus went to the Capernaum in Galilee to call the first four at their place of work. The painter Cavareggio represents the place of calling at his counting-room where he was compiling his accounts, appearing at the window and pointing to him. The reaction of
            We must look at the gospel which he wrote, fired by Mark´s example. When he came to write it several decades had passed and he had had many experiences and had collected much more material and had reflected deeply on it. At some early stage he had probably compiled a list of proof texts from the Old Testament which missionaries could use in controversy with the Rabbis. An Englishman, James Rendel Harris, who had been an Anglican but became a Quaker, had taken up this position, which has had some echoes among Catholic scholars of repute, especially a study from Notre Dame University in the United States, Martin C. Albl, in his "And Scripture cannot be broken" (published by Brill at Leiden in 1999). There seem to be traces of this in the accepted gospel, where formal allusions to Old Testament texts can be found throughout the Gospel. It would be more acceptable if more than a list were in view, with some comments on the texts and their Christian bearing.
            But to venture an overview of the gospel as known to us, we can say that Matthew showed himself as pre-occupied with the relationship of Christianity to Judaism. He begins with a genealogy deriving from Abraham, in three sections: up to King David; from him to the deportation of the Jews to Babylon; from then until the "birth of Jesus, who is called Christ". This is followed by an Infancy Narrative, with an account of his virginal birth, the visit of the Magi to Bethlehem, and the flight into Egypt to protect his life and the return of the Holy Family to Nazareth. The two latter are proper to Matthew, and we would like to know his sources, especially for the visit of the Magi: the word is of Persian origin though they probably came from Chaldea, and it entails that they were astronomers as also astrologers. Their names given elsewhere are derived from a baffling group of traditions. but they are not given here. Notice the linkage with Judaism. The star which they saw had entered into a part of the Zodiac concerned with the fortunes of the Jewish nation. That explains why they went to the Palace of Herod in Jerusalem. But the treatment by Herod of the Bethlehem babies was typical of him, and it demonstrates an instinctive fear and cruelty which was set off when the Magi did not return to him as he had asked. This was a presentation of his infidelity and hypocrisy as a supposed Jew (his Idumean race was half-Jewish). An interlude tells of his baptism by John, his temptations in the desert, his return to Galilee to call his first Apostles and his preaching and healing there. Then comes the Sermon on the Mount which is presented primarily spiritually but also with some artistry. It provides an account of the differences and the superiority of his conceptions with the fullness of revelation which transcended that of Moses. There follows a section of very striking miracles, into which Matthew interposes his own vocation, with Jesus' two words "Follow me!". Then comes the naming and commissioning of the twelve apostles with his warning about the sublime holiness of their mission. He begins to reveal his personal awareness of the superficiality of the people, demonstrated in their failure to persevere with him. Jesus insists of the essential simplicity of his message, and addresses the Father in an ecstasy of prayer. The cures continue; Matthew introduces the prophesies of the Suffering Servant as an explanation of his activity. He is accused of being in league with the prince of devils as the intensity of opposition to him rises. Yet he continues his parabolic teaching, contemplating the simplicity of nature despite its weed-growth. He visits Nazareth where he is rejected. Herod the Tetrarch hears of him and says it is John the Baptist, whom he had had executed, risen from the dead (here Matthew retrospectively describes his execution). There is the miraculous feeding of the five thousand with bread and fish, and the calming of the lake storm. Here he turns on the excessive literalism of the Pharisees attitude to the Law, which is not deep: they are imperfectly converted. Despite all of his miracles, the Pharisees still demand a sign from heaven; he condemns Pharisees and Saducees together (the high priesthood was Saduceean). He prophesies at three instances his Passion. He rejects the casuistry of the Pharisees about divorce. Identifying himself with the children whom Judaism ignored until they came of age; he makes great demands on the seriousness of his disciples, emphatically asserting that leadership entails service. He comes to Jerusalem from Jericho and enters as Messiah; immediately he cleanses the Temple. King David had said that his Lord is greater than himself. Then comes a diatribe against the Scribes and Pharisees. Only he could have saved Jerusalem, instead of which there will be an ending at which he will return from Heaven to judge the world.
            The ending is in the Passion followed by his Resurrection. The Passion results from a conspiracy made possible by the treachery of Judas Iscariot. He is arrested in the Gethsemane garden, and passed by the Sanhedrin to Pontius Pilate for judgement; prompted by the Chief priests and Elders the crowd rejected Pilate´s intended liberation of Jesus and chose Barabbas; Pilate judged that he must comply, on the risk of a riot. So he was mockingly crucified. Matthew describes his dying in some detail. He was buried in Joseph of Arimathea´s own tomb, over which a guard was mounted. Towards Dawn the women went to the Tomb to perform the rites more perfectly. Coinciding with an earthquake an Angel rolled away the stone, and told the women that he would appear in Galilee, which he did before the eleven remaining disciples. There he told them that their mission would be to all nations, baptising them in the name of the Trinity and they should instruct them to observe all the commandments which he had given them; he would be always with them.
            In all of this narrative there has been a mounting thematic. The key to what had preceded it came at the very end. Christ is resurrected in a glorious and unconquerable state which will be eternal. Baptism into his mysteries which had taken place in their presence: the new Pasch from the slaughter of the sacrificial Victim to his resurrection in a state of glorification will be communicated to the Baptised, brought into the spiritual Church in total familiarity with him, participating in his divinity into which they will be adopted by baptism. There will be a universal ending for all men in a condition of being judged by him who is their life and their model. The defective Roman judgement is also accepted by the Divine Son as an additional weight of sin. Innumerable anticipations of this central mystery for mankind will be found in the Jewish Scriptures so that the life of God can be perfectly participated unendingly on earth, Those anticipations will disappear so that what they anticipated may come in fullness and effect a timeless and endless fulfilment and rectification of what had gone before. In the light if that the opposition and antagonism of Priests, Elders, Temple Scribes and so-called reformist Pharisees was totally irrelevant after the universal Messiah and King had terminated the whole thematic, and would lead humanity into an exalted and unanticipated peace. Amen.