Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Wed, Jan 9, 2013 - Litany Lane Blog: Martyr, First John 4:11-18, Psalms 72:10-13, Mark 6:45-52, St Basilissa, Catholic Catechism Chapter 2:1-2 Stages of Revelation

Wednesday, January 9, 2013 - Litany Lane Blog:

Martyr, First John 4:11-18, Psalms 72:10-13, Mark 6:45-52, St Basilissa, Catholic Catechism Chapter 2:1-2 Stages of Revelation

Good Day Bloggers!  Happy New Year, Bonne Annee!
Wishing everyone a Blessed Week!

Year of Faith - October 11, 2012 - November 24, 2013

P.U.S.H. (Pray Until Serenity Happens). It has a remarkable way of producing solace, peace, patience and tranquility and of course resolution...God's always available 24/7.

The world begins and ends everyday for someone.  We are all human. We all experience birth, life and death. We all have flaws but we also all have the gift of knowledge and free will, make the most of these gifts. Life on earth is a stepping stone to our eternal home in Heaven. Its your choice whether to rise towards eternal light or lost to eternal darkness. Material items, though needed for sustenance and survival on earth are of earthly value only. The only thing that passes from this earth to Purgatory and/or Heaven is our Soul, our's God's perpetual gift to us...Embrace it, treasure it, nurture it, protect it...

"Raise not a hand to another unless it is to offer in peace and goodwill." ~ Zarya Parx 2012


January 02, 2013 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:
 "Dear children, with much love and patience I strive to make your hearts like unto mine. I strive, by my example, to teach you humility, wisdom and love because I need you; I cannot do without you my children. According to God's will I am choosing you, by His strength I am strengthening you. Therefore, my children, do not be afraid to open your hearts to me. I will give them to my Son and in return, He will give you the gift of Divine peace. You will carry it to all those whom you meet, you will witness God's love with your life and you will give the gift of my Son through yourselves. Through reconciliation, fasting and prayer, I will lead you. Immeasurable is my love. Do not be afraid. My children, pray for the shepherds. May your lips be shut to every judgment, because do not forget that my Son has chosen them and only He has the right to judge. Thank you."

December 25, 2012 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:
Our Lady came with little Jesus in her arms and she did not give a message, but little Jesus began to speak and said : “I am your peace, live my commandments.” With a sign of the cross, Our Lady and little Jesus blessed us together.

December 2, 2012 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:
Dear children, with motherly love and motherly patience anew I call you to live according to my Son, to spread His peace and His love, so that, as my apostles, you may accept God's truth with all your heart and pray for the Holy Spirit to guide you. Then you will be able to faithfully serve my Son, and show His love to others with your life. According to the love of my Son and my love, as a mother, I strive to bring all of my strayed children into my motherly embrace and to show them the way of faith. My children, help me in my motherly battle and pray with me that sinners may become aware of their sins and repent sincerely. Pray also for those whom my Son has chosen and consecrated in His name. Thank you." 


Today's Word:  martyr   mar·tyr  [marh-tuh]

Origin: before 900;  (noun) Middle English marter, Old English martyr  < Late Latin  < Late Greek mártyr,  variant of Greek mártys, mártyros  witness; (v.) Middle English martiren, Old English martyrian,  derivative of noun

1. a person who willingly suffers death rather than renounce his or her religion.
2. a person who is put to death or endures great suffering on behalf of any belief, principle, or cause: a martyr to the cause of social justice.
3. a person who undergoes severe or constant suffering: a martyr to severe headaches.
4. a person who seeks sympathy or attention by feigning or exaggerating pain, deprivation, etc.
verb (used with object)
5. to make a martyr of, especially by putting to death.
6. to torment or torture.


Today's Old Testament Reading -  Psalms 72:1-2, 10, 12-13

1 [Of Solomon] God, endow the king with your own fair judgement, the son of the king with your own saving justice,
2 that he may rule your people with justice, and your poor with fair judgement.
10 the kings of Tarshish and the islands will pay him tribute. The kings of Sheba and Saba will offer gifts;
12 For he rescues the needy who calls to him, and the poor who has no one to help.
13 He has pity on the weak and the needy, and saves the needy from death


Today's Epistle -   First John 4:11-18

11 My dear friends, if God loved us so much, we too should love one another.
12 No one has ever seen God, but as long as we love one another God remains in us and his love comes to its perfection in us.
13 This is the proof that we remain in him and he in us, that he has given us a share in his Spirit.
14 We ourselves have seen and testify that the Father sent his Son as Saviour of the world.
15 Anyone who acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God remains in him and he in God.
16 We have recognised for ourselves, and put our faith in, the love God has for us. God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him.
17 Love comes to its perfection in us when we can face the Day of Judgement fearlessly, because even in this world we have become as he is.
18 In love there is no room for fear, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear implies punishment and no one who is afraid has come to perfection in love.


Today's Gospel Reading -  Mark 6:45-52

And at once he made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead to the other side near Bethsaida, while he himself sent the crowd away. After saying goodbye to them he went off into the hills to pray. When evening came, the boat was far out on the sea, and he was alone on the land. He could see that they were hard pressed in their rowing, for the wind was against them; and about the fourth watch of the night he came towards them, walking on the sea. He was going to pass them by, but when they saw him walking on the sea they thought it was a ghost and cried out; for they had all seen him and were terrified. But at once he spoke to them and said, 'Courage! It's me! Don't be afraid.' Then he got into the boat with them and the wind dropped. They were utterly and completely dumbfounded, because they had not seen what the miracle of the loaves meant; their minds were closed.

• After the multiplication of the loaves (yesterday’s Gospel), Jesus ordered the disciples to go into the boat. Why? Mark does not explain this. The Gospel of John says the following. According to the hope people had at that time, the Messiah would repeat the gesture of Moses and would feed the multitude in the desert. This is why, before the multiplication of the loaves, the people concluded that Jesus must be the expected Messiah, announced by Moses (cf. Dt 18, 15-18) and they wanted to make him a King (cfr. Jn 6, 14-15). This decision of the people was a temptation for Jesus as well as for the disciples. And for this reason, Jesus obliged the disciples to take the boat and leave. He wanted to avoid that they got contaminated with the dominating ideology, because the “leaven of Herod and of the Pharisees was very strong (Mk 8, 15). Jesus himself faces the temptation through prayer.

• Mark describes the events with great art. On one side, Jesus goes up to the mountain to pray. On the other, the disciples go toward the sea and get into the boat. It almost seems like a symbolical picture which foreshadows the future: it is as if Jesus went up to Heaven, leaving the disciples alone in the midst of the contradictions of life, in the fragile boat of the community. It was night. They are in the high seas, all together in the small boat, trying to advance, rowing, but the wind was strong and contrary to them. They were tired. It was night, between three and six o’clock in the morning. The communities of the time of Mark were like the disciples. In the night! Contrary wind! They caught no fish, in spite of the efforts made! Jesus seemed to be absent! But he was present and came close to them, but they, like the disciples of Emmaus, did not recognize him (Lk 24, 16).

• At the time of Mark, around the year 70, the small boat of the communities had to face the contrary wind on the part of some converted Jews who wished to reduce the mystery of Jesus to the prophecies and figures of the Old Testament, as well as some converted Pagans who thought it was possible to have a certain alliance of the faith in Jesus with the empire. Mark tries to help the Christians to respect the Mystery of Jesus and not to want to reduce Jesus to their own desires and ideas.

• Jesus arrives walking on the water of the sea of life. They scream taken up by fear, because they think that it is a question of a phantasm. As it happens in the passage of the Disciples of Emmaus, Jesus pretends that he wants to continue to walk (Lk 24, 28). But they cry out and this causes him to change the way, he gets close to them and says: “Courage, it is I, do not be afraid!”. Here, once again, for one who knows the story of the Old Testament this recalls some very important facts: (a) Remember that the people, protected by God, crossed the Red Sea without fear; (b) Remember, that God calling Moses, declared his name several times, saying “I am he who is!” (cfr. Ex 3, 15); (c) Remember also the Book of Isaiah which represents the return from the exile as a new Exodus, where God appears repeating numerous times: “I am he who is!” (cfr. Is 42, 8; 43, 5-11-13; 44, 6.25; 45, 5-7). This way of recalling the Old Testament, of using the Bible, helped the communities to perceive better the presence of God in Jesus and in the facts of life. Do not be afraid!

• Jesus goes into the boat and the wind ceased. But the fear of the disciples, instead of disappearing, increases. Mark, the Evangelist, makes a commentary criticizing them and says: “They had not understood what the miracle of the loaves meant, their minds were closed” (6, 52). The affirmation their minds were closed reminds us of the heart of Pharaoh which was hardened (Ex 7, 3.13.22) and of the people in the desert (Ps 95, 8) who did not want to listen to Moses and thought only of returning to Egypt (Nb 20, 2-10), where there was plenty of bread and meat to satisfy them (Ex 16, 3).

Personal questions
• Night, stormy sea, contrary wind! Have you ever felt like this? What have you done to overcome it?
• Have you been afraid so many times because you have not known how to recognize Jesus present and acting in your life?

Reference: Courtesy of Order of Carmelites,


Featured Item of the Day from Litany Lane


Saint of the Day:  St Basilissa and St Julian

Feast DayJanuary 9
Patron Saint Brussels,  single laywomen

Saints Julian and Basilissa (died ca. 304) were husband and wife. They were Christian martyrs who died at either Antioch or, more probably, at Antinoe, in the reign of Diocletian, early in the fourth century, on 9 January, according to the Roman Martyrology, or 8 January, according to the Greek Menaea.

Their feast day is also given as 6 January, while a group of people martyred with Julian (Celsus, Marcionilla, Anthony, Anastasius) have the feast day of January 9.

There exists no historically certain data relating to these two holy personages, and more than once this Julian of Antinoe has been confounded with Julian of Cilicia. The confusion is easily explained by the fact that thirty-nine saints of this name are mentioned in the Roman Martyrology, eight of whom are commemorated in the one month of January. But little is known of this saint, once we put aside the exaggerations of his Acts.


Forced by his family to marry, he agreed with his spouse, Basilissa, that they should both preserve their virginity, and further encouraged her to found a convent for women, of which she became the superior, while he himself gathered a large number of monks and undertook their direction. The two converted their home into a hospital which could house up to 1,000 people (thus, Julian is often confused with Julian the Hospitaller).

Basilissa died a very holy death, but martyrdom was reserved for Julian under the persecutions of Diocletian.
Celsus, the young son of Marcionilla, was martyred along with Julian. The priest Anthony (Antony) was martyred at the same time, as well as a convert and neophyte named Anastasius. Marcionilla's seven brothers are also said to have been killed.

Julian's Martyrdom

During the persecution of Diocletian he was arrested, tortured, and put to death at Antioch, in Syria, by the order of the governor, Martian, according to the Latins, at Antinoe, in Egypt, according to the Greeks, which seems more probable. Unfortunately, the Acts of this martyr belong to those pious romances so much appreciated in early times, whose authors, concerned only for the edification of their readers, drowned the few known facts in a mass of imaginary details. Like many similar lives of saints, it offers miracles, prodigies, and improbable utterances, that lack the least historical value.


In any case, these two saints must have enjoyed a great reputation in antiquity, and their veneration was well established before the eighth century. In the Martyrologium Hieronymianum they are mentioned under 6 January; Usuard, Ado, Notker of St Gall, and others place them under the ninth, and Rabanus Maurus under the thirteenth of the same month, while Vandelbert puts them under 13 February, and the Menology of Canisius under 21 June, the day to which the Greek Menaea assign St. Julian of Caesarea. There used to exist at Constantinople a church under the invocation of these saints, the dedication of which is inscribed in the Greek Calendar under 5 July.

Only a fragment of Ælfric's Passion of St. Julian and His Wife Basilissa from his Lives of the Saints has survived, but the traditional legend is there: the two saints vow not to consummate their marriage on their wedding night, and devote themselves to clænnysse ("chastity"). Julian suffers martyrdom by beheading.


  • Catholic Encyclopedia: Sts. Julian and Basilissa
  • St. Basilissa
  • St. Julian
  • Kevin Kiernan, Odd Couples in Ælfric's Julian and Basilissa in British Library Cotton MS Otho B. x
  • Julian, Basilissa, Antony, Anastasius and Companions
  • "Saints Marcianilla, Celsus, and Basilissa" in Christian Iconography
 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company.


Featured Items Panel from Litany Lane



Catechism of the Catholic Church

Part One: Profession of Faith, Chapter 2:1-2


Article 2

II. The Stages of Revelation

In the beginning God makes himself known 

54 "God, who creates and conserves all things by his Word, provides men with constant evidence of himself in created realities. and furthermore, wishing to open up the way to heavenly salvation - he manifested himself to our first parents from the very beginning."DV 3; cf. Jn 1:3; Rom 1:19-20 He invited them to intimate communion with himself and clothed them with resplendent grace and justice. 

55 This revelation was not broken off by our first parents' sin. "After the fall, (God) buoyed them up with the hope of salvation, by promising redemption; and he has never ceased to show his solicitude for the human race. For he wishes to give eternal life to all those who seek salvation by patience in well-doing."DV 3; cf. Gen 3:15; Rom 2:6-7

Even when he disobeyed you and lost your friendship you did not abandon him to the power of death. . . Again and again you offered a covenant to man.Roman Missal, Eucharistic Prayer IV, 118

The covenant with Noah

56 After the unity of the human race was shattered by sin God at once sought to save humanity part by part. the covenant with Noah after the flood gives expression to the principle of the divine economy toward the "nations", in other words, towards men grouped "in their lands, each with (its) own language, by their families, in their nations". Gen 10:5; cf. 9:9-10, 16; 10:20-31.

57 This state of division into many nations, each entrusted by divine providence to the guardianship of angels, is at once cosmic, social and religious. It is intended to limit the pride of fallen humanityCf. Acts 17:26-27; Dt 4:19; Dt (LXX) 32:8. united only in its perverse ambition to forge its own unity as at Babel.Cf. Wis 10:5; Gen 11:4-6 But, because of sin, both polytheism and the idolatry of the nation and of its rulers constantly threaten this provisional economy with the perversion of paganism.Cf. Rom 1:18-25
58 The covenant with Noah remains in force during the times of the Gentiles, until the universal proclamation of the Gospel.Cf. Gen 9:16; Lk 21:24; DV 3 The Bible venerates several great figures among the Gentiles: Abel the just, the king-priest Melchisedek - a figure of Christ - and the upright "Noah, Daniel, and Job".Cf. Gen 14:18; Heb 7:3; Ezek 14:14. Scripture thus expresses the heights of sanctity that can be reached by those who live according to the covenant of Noah, waiting for Christ to "gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad".Jn 11:52

God chooses Abraham

59 In order to gather together scattered humanity God calls Abram from his country, his kindred and his father's house,Gen 12:1 and makes him Abraham, that is, "the father of a multitude of nations". "In you all the nations of the earth shall be blessed."Gen 17:5; 12:3 (LXX); cf. Gal 3:8
60 The people descended from Abraham would be the trustee of the promise made to the patriarchs, the chosen people, called to prepare for that day when God would gather all his children into the unity of the Church.Cf. Rom 11:28; Jn 11:52; 10:16 They would be the root on to which the Gentiles would be grafted, once they came to believe.Cf. Rom 11:17-18, 24
61 The patriarchs, prophets and certain other Old Testament figures have been and always will be honoured as saints in all the Church's liturgical traditions.

God forms his people Israel

62 After the patriarchs, God formed Israel as his people by freeing them from slavery in Egypt. He established with them the covenant of Mount Sinai and, through Moses, gave them his law so that they would recognize him and serve him as the one living and true God, the provident Father and just judge, and so that they would look for the promised Saviour.Cf. DV 3
63 Israel is the priestly people of God, "called by the name of the LORD", and "the first to hear the word of God",Dt 28: 10; Roman Missal, Good i Friday, General Intercession VI;
   see also Ex 19:6

 The people of "elder brethren" in the faith of Abraham.

64 Through the prophets, God forms his people in the hope of salvation, in the expectation of a new and everlasting Covenant intended for all, to be written on their hearts. Cf. Is 2:2-4; Jer 31:31-34; Heb 10:16 The prophets proclaim a radical redemption of the People of God, purification from all their infidelities, a salvation which will include all the nations.Cf. Ezek 36; Is 49:5-6; 53:11 Above all, the poor and humble of the Lord will bear this hope. Such holy women as Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel, Miriam, Deborah, Hannah, Judith and Esther kept alive the hope of Israel's salvation. the purest figure among them is Mary.Cf. Ezek 2:3; Lk 1:38