Thursday, February 23, 2017


'Tis the Memorial of Saint Polycarp, Bishop & Martyr (circa 69-155), martyred in the reign of the emperor Antoninus Pius: Martyr-link ūnus, Martyr-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine. Quoth the Holy Redeemer bulletin:
Polycarp was a second-century Christian bishop of Smyrna. According to the Martyrdom of Polycarp he died a martyr, bound & burned at the stake, then stabbed when the fire failed to touch him.
Quoth the Holy Family bulletin:
Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna, disciple of Saint John the Apostle (27 December), & friend of Saint Ignatius of Antioch (17 October), was a revered Christian leader during the first half of the second century. Saint Ignatius, on his way to Rome to be martyred, visited Polycarp at Smyrna, & later at Troas wrote him a personal letter. The Asian Minor Churches recognized Polycarp's leadership by choosing him as a representative to discuss with Pope (St.) Anicetus (20 April) the date of the Easter celebration in Rome—a major controversy in the early Church. Only one of the many letters written by Polycarp has been preserved, the one he wrote to the Church of Philippi in Macedonia. At (age) eighty-six, Polycarp was led into the crowded Smyrna stadium to be burned alive. The flames did not harm him & he was finally killed by a dagger.
'Tis also the festival of Saint Serenus the Gardener, Martyr (died circa 305), martyred in the reign of the emperor Maximian: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the festival of Blessed Ludwik Mzyk, Priest & Martyr, S.V.D. (1905-1940), martyred in the reign of the Führer Adolf Hitler, one of the One Hundred Eight Martyrs of World War II: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link CVIII.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Sirach, chapter five, verses one thru eight;
Psalm One, verses one thru four & six;
The Gospel according to Mark, chapter nine, verses forty-one thru fifty;

or, for St. Polycarp:
The Book of Revelation, chapter two, verses eight thru eleven;
Psalm Thirty-one, verse six;
The Gospel according to John, chapter fifteen, verses eighteen thru twenty-one.

Individual Reading
The Book of Wisdom, chapter three, verses one thru twelve.

Commentary: The Hidden Counsels of God: A. On Suffering.

Urbi et Orbi
As is par for the course, Eye of the Tiber is funniest when it hits a little too close to home: Tiber-link.

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