Wednesday, June 1, 2011

On the Feast of St. Justin Martyr

I haven't read much on St. Justin Martyr but I was introduced to a small log of his writing at a recent class on the Holy Mass and I thought it very enlightening that what he experienced in the 2nd century (100-165? A.D.) and ventured to pass to a pagan emperor, all Catholics still breathe-in this 21st century.

How richly historic and Scriptural is our Catholic Mass!

"On the day we call the day of the sun, all who dwell in the city or country gather in the same place.

"The memoirs of the apostles and the writings of the prophets are read, as much as time permits.

"When the reader has finished, he who presides over those gathered admonishes and challenges them to imitate these beautiful things.

"Then we all rise together and offer prayers* for ourselves . . .and for all others, wherever they may be, so that we may be found righteous by our life and actions, and faithful to the commandments, so as to obtain eternal salvation.

"When the prayers are concluded we exchange the kiss.

"Then someone brings bread and a cup of water and wine mixed together to him who presides over the brethren.

"He takes them and offers praise and glory to the Father of the universe, through the name of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and for a considerable time he gives thanks (in Greek: eucharistian) that we have been judged worthy of these gifts.

"When he has concluded the prayers and thanksgivings, all present give voice to an acclamation by saying: 'Amen.'

"When he who presides has given thanks and the people have responded, those whom we call deacons give to those present the "eucharisted" bread, wine and water and take them to those who are absent. " ~ St. Justin Martyr to the pagan emperor Antoninus Pius (pdf file) (CCC 1345)

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