+ This Friday will be the 1st Class feast Day of SS. Peter and Paul, red vestments. I am wondering if some of you more experienced folks (ok...older folks) used to observe these feast days in a special way, beyond the obvious prayers. I guess what I am asking is; did folks actually celebrate these days with some sort of remembrance outside of liturgical functions and prayers? Special foods? Flowers? It seems silly of me to ask but what I don't know...I don't know.
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Feast Day of SS. Peter and Paul
Frdiay June 29
St. Peter suffered martyrdom under Nero, in A.D. 66 or 67. He was buried on the hill of the Vatican where recent excavations have revealed his tomb on the very site of the basilica of St. Peter's. St. Paul was beheaded in the via Ostia on the spot where now stands the basilica bearing his name. Down the centuries Christian people in their thousands have gone on pilgrimage to the tombs of these Apostles. In the second and third centuries the Roman Church already stood pre-eminent by reason of her apostolicity, the infallible truth of her teaching and her two great figures, Sts. Peter and Paul.
A plenary indulgence may be gained today by anyone who makes devout use of a religious article blessed by a bishop and who also recites any approved profession of faith (e.g. the Apostles Creed), as long as the usual conditions are satisfied.
Peter's original name was Simon. Christ Himself gave him the name Cephas or Peter when they first met and later confirmed it. This name change was meant to show both Peter's rank as leader of the apostles and the outstanding trait of his character — Peter (in Hebrew Kephas) the Rock. Peter was born in Bethsaida on the Sea of Galilee. Like his younger brother Andrew, he was a fisherman and dwelt at Capernaum. Peter's house often became the scene of miracles, since the Master would stay there whenever He was teaching in that locality. Together with his brothers John and Andrew, Peter belonged to the first of Jesus' disciples (John 1:40-50).
After the miraculous draught of fish on the Sea of Galilee, Peter received his definitive call and left wife, family, and occupation to take his place as leader of the Twelve. Thereafter we find him continually at Jesus' side, whether it be as spokesman of the apostolic college (John 6:68; Matt. 16:16), or as one specially favored (e.g., at the restoration to life of Jairus' daughter, at the transfiguration, during the agony in the garden). His sanguine temperament often led him into hasty, unpremeditated words and actions; his denial of Jesus during the passion was a salutary lesson. It accentuated a weakness in his character and made him humble.
After the ascension, Peter always took the leading role, exercising the office of chief shepherd that Christ had entrusted to him. He delivered the first sermon on Pentecost and received the first Gentiles into the Church (Cornelius; Acts 10:1). Paul went to Jerusalem "to see Peter." After his miraculous deliverance from prison (Easter, 42 A.D.), Peter "went to a different place," most probably to Rome. Details now become scanty; we hear of his presence at the Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15:1), and of his journey to Antioch (Gal. 2:11).
It is certain that Peter labored in Rome as an apostle, that he was the city's first bishop, and that he died there as a martyr, bound to a cross (67 A.D.). According to tradition he also was the first bishop of Antioch. He is the author of two letters, the first Christian encyclicals. His burial place is Christendom's most famous shrine, an edifice around whose dome are inscribed the words: Tu es Petrus, et super hanc petram aedificabo ecclesiam meam.
Excerpted from The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch
Patron: Against frenzy; bakers; bridge builders; butchers; clock makers; cobblers; Exeter College Oxford; feet problems; fever; fishermen; harvesters; locksmiths; longevity; masons; net makers; papacy; Popes; ship builders; shipwrights; shoemakers; stone masons; Universal Church; watch makers; Poznan, Poland; Rome; Diocese of Jackson, Mississippi; Diocese of Las Vegas, Nevada; Diocese of Marquette, Michigan; Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Diocese of Providence, Rhode Island; Diocese of Scranton, Pennsylvania.
Symbols: Two keys saltire; pastoral staff and two large keys; inverted cross; inverted cross and two keys saltire; crowing cock; fish; two swords; patriarchal cross and two keys saltire; two keys and a scroll; sword.
Often portrayed as: Bald man, often with a fringe of hair on the sides and a tuft on top; book; keys; man crucified head downwards; man holding a key or keys; man robed as a pope and bearing keys and a double-barred cross.
Paul, known as Saul (his Roman name) before his conversion, was born at Tarsus in the Roman province of Silicia about two or three years after the advent of the Redeemer. He was the son of Jewish parents who belonged to the tribe of Benjamin, was reared according to the strict religious-nationalistic party of the Pharisees, and enjoyed the high distinction of Roman citizenship.
As a youth he went to Jerusalem to become immersed in the Law and had as a teacher the celebrated Gamaliel. He acquired skill as a tent-maker, a work he continued even as an apostle. At the time of Jesus' ministry he no longer was at Jerusalem; neither did he see the Lord during His earthly-life. Upon returning to the Holy City, Paul discovered a flourishing Christian community and at once became its bitter opponent. When Stephen impugned Law and temple, Paul was one of the first at his stoning; thereafter his fiery personality would lead the persecution. Breathing threats of slaughter against the disciples of Jesus, he was hurrying to Damascus when the grace of God effected his conversion (about the year 34 A.D.; see January 25, Conversion of St. Paul).
After receiving baptism and making some initial attempts at preaching, Paul withdrew into the Arabian desert (c. 34-37 A.D.), where he prepared himself for his future mission. During this retreat he was favored with special revelations, Christ appearing to him personally. Upon his return to Damascus he began to preach but was forced to leave when the Jews sought to kill him. Then he went to Jerusalem "to see Peter." Barnabas introduced him to the Christian community, but the hatred of the Jews again obliged him to take secret flight. The following years (38-42 A.D.) he spent at Tarsus until Barnabas brought him to the newly founded Christian community at Antioch, where both worked a year for the cause of Christ; in the year 44 he made another journey to Jerusalem with the money collected for that famine stricken community.
The first major missionary journey (45-48) began upon his return as he and Barnabas brought the Gospel to Cyprus and Asia Minor (Acts 13-14). The Council of Jerusalem occasioned Paul's reappearance in Jerusalem (50). Spurred on by the decisions of the Council, he began the second missionary journey (51-53), traveling through Asia Minor and then crossing over to Europe and founding churches at Philippi, Thessalonia (his favorite), Berea, Athens, Corinth. He remained almost two years at Corinth, establishing a very flourishing and important community. In 54 he returned to Jerusalem for the fourth time.
Paul's third missionary journey (54-58) took him to Ephesus, where he labored three years with good success; after visiting his European communities, he returned to Jerusalem for a fifth time (Pentecost, 58). There he was seized by the Jews and accused of condemning the Law. After being held as a prisoner for two years at Caesarea, he appealed to Caesar and was sent by sea to Rome (60 A.D.). Shipwrecked and delayed on the island of Malta, he arrived at Rome in the spring of 61 and passed the next two years in easy confinement before being released. The last years of the saint's life were devoted to missionary excursions, probably including Spain, and to revisiting his first foundations. In 66 he returned to Rome, was taken prisoner, and beheaded a year later. His fourteen letters are a precious legacy; they afford a deep insight into a great soul.
Excerpted from The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch
Patron: Against snakes; authors; Cursillo movement; evangelists; hailstorms; hospital public relations; journalists; lay people; missionary bishops; musicians; poisonous snakes; public relations personnel; public relations work; publishers; reporters; rope braiders; rope makers; saddlemakers; saddlers; snake bites; tent makers; writers; Malta; Rome; Poznan, Poland; newspaper editorial staff, Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Diocese of Covington, Kentucky; Diocese of Birmingham, Alabama; Diocese of Las Vegas, Nevada; Diocese of Providence, Rhode Island; Diocese of Worcester, Massachusetts.
Symbols: Book and sword, three fountains; two swords; scourge; serpent and a fire; armour of God; twelve scrolls with names of his Epistles; Phoenix; palm tree; shield of faith; sword; book.
Often portrayed as: Thin-faced elderly man with a high forehead, receding hairline and long pointed beard; man holding a sword and a book; man with 3 springs of water nearby.
When four-year-old Louis Bigari arrives at St. Mary of Victories Church Downtown, he makes a beeline for the side chapel, stopping only to genuflect before the Blessed Sacrament, held in the tabernacle of the main church.
|Lisa Johnston | firstname.lastname@example.org|
Louis and his mother, Lesley, attend this Mass during the week -- and sometimes with older brother Wyatt, 12. When it is celebrated early enough, Louis' father, Matt, is able to join them before heading to his job Downtown. Since he was just 2 years old, Louis has been assisting Father Harrison during parts of the Mass. Over time, he has learned how to handle the cruets holding the Holy water and wine, ringing the bells during the consecration and other parts of the Mass, holding Father Harrison's biretta, moving the kneeler forward for Communion and extinguishing the candles after Mass.
Father Harrison said he first recognized Louis' profound interest in the Mass when the boy was just 2 years and 10 months old.
"During Mass, I went to raise the consecrated Host, and I hear this little voice: 'Dring, dring, dring!'" The young boy was making a ringing sound in place of the part during the consecration, where the bells normally would have been rung, had a server been there to assist. Father Harrison gave him a set of bells to ring, and now Louis knows all 13 places during the Mass that call for the ringing of bells.
Part of Louis' interest in the Mass comes from a watchful eye on brother Wyatt, who serves at St. Francis de Sales Oratory in south St. Louis, where the family regularly attends Mass. But Lesley Bigari also said none of this would be possible without the intercession of the Blessed Mother. Lesley and Matt consecrated Louis to the Immaculate Heart of Mary when he was a baby. (See related.)
"It is just amazing to see how our Good Mother works," said Lesley Bigari, who is expecting a daughter in October. Louis also prays a little prayer each day where he asks Our Lord to 'show him his vocation and to protect his baptismal innocence.'"
Father Harrison said that the Church does not have an age restriction on servers, but he "has to know all of the Latin responses, which would be especially difficult to learn for a Latin Mass if he didn't yet know how to read." Traditionally, most servers begin around the time of their First Communion. The priest said Louis is the youngest person he's ever had assist him at Mass.
"He's wanting me to make him those," said Lesley Bigari.
These days, Louis is into making processions around the house, said his father. Sometimes he carries a candle, and the family will follow with a Litany to the Sacred Heart of Jesus or the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The family often prays the Rosary together -- and you guessed it, Louis already knows most of the prayers in Latin.
"To say that it is important to raise our children in the one true faith is an understatement," said Matt Bigari. "When today's popular belief is, 'all religions are pleasing to God,' and most Catholics don't even believe the dogma of no salvation outside the Church, it is essential that we prepare the children for their vocation of suffering.
There are many different vocations, he said, but all include redemptive suffering.
"Lesley and I want to prepare our children to follow the Mother of God's commands to suffer for the love of God and the salvation of souls," he said. "We know that parenting by our own strength will fail, so we place our trust Our Blessed Mother.
"God wants to establish devotion in the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, therefore, my childrens' vocation is to establish devotion in the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary," he said. "She will take care of everything else ... like a good mother always does."
Act of Consecration for a child to the Immaculate Heart of Mary
O Blessed Virgin Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth, to your Immaculate Heart, the channel of graces we consecrate this child whom we have received from God’s goodness. We offer (NAME)to you that so that you may present (NAME) to your Divine Son, that you may take HIM/HER under your loving, maternal protection, that you may preserve (NAME) from dangers, that you may keep (NAME) from all sin, that you may make (NAME) grow in piety and in all virtue so that (NAME) may always be worthy to call (NAME) your child. May (NAME) grow daily in wisdom and in grace, may (NAME) go through life having you always as HIS/HER refuge and Mother. May all virtues shine in (NAME) and may (NAME) never offend your Maternal Heart.
May the Eternal Father always look upon (NAME) with delight and see in (NAME) a ray and reflection of your Immaculate Beauty.
And as Today, (NAME) gladdens our home, so may (NAME) one day gladden the Eternal Home which we pray will be (HIS/HERS). Amen.