Blog Post - August 10th

S. Lawrence| Daily Meditation| Daily Quote by S. Padre Pio| Divine Mercy Reflection



St. Lawrence

(d. 258?)

Both Calendars

The esteem in which the Church holds Lawrence is seen in the fact that today’s celebration ranks as a feast. We know very little about his life. He is one of those whose martyrdom made a deep and lasting impression on the early Church. Celebration of his feast day spread rapidly.

He was a Roman deacon under Pope St. Sixtus II. Four days after this pope was put to death, Lawrence and four clerics suffered martyrdom, probably during the persecution of the Emperor Valerian.

Legendary details of his death were known to Damasus (Dec 11), Prudentius, Ambrose (December 7) and Augustine (August 28). The church built over his tomb became one of the seven principal churches in Rome and a favorite place for Roman pilgrimages.

A well-known legend has persisted from earliest times. As deacon in Rome, Lawrence was charged with the responsibility for the material goods of the Church, and the distribution of alms to the poor. When Lawrence knew he would be arrested like the pope, he sought out the poor, widows and orphans of Rome and gave them all the money he had on hand, selling even the sacred vessels to increase the sum. When the prefect of Rome heard of this, he imagined that the Christians must have considerable treasure. He sent for Lawrence and said, “You Christians say we are cruel to you, but that is not what I have in mind. I am told that your priests offer in gold, that the sacred blood is received in silver cups, that you have golden candlesticks at your evening services. Now, your doctrine says you must render to Caesar what is his. Bring these treasures—the emperor needs them to maintain his forces. God does not cause money to be counted: He brought none of it into the world with him—only words. Give me the money, therefore, and be rich in words.”

Lawrence replied that the Church was indeed rich. “I will show you a valuable part. But give me time to set everything in order and make an inventory.” After three days he gathered a great number of blind, lame, maimed, leprous, orphaned and widowed persons and put them in rows. When the prefect arrived, Lawrence simply said, “These are the treasure of the Church.”

The prefect was so angry he told Lawrence that he would indeed have his wish to die—but it would be by inches. He had a great gridiron prepared, with coals beneath it, and had Lawrence’s body placed on it. After the martyr had suffered the pain for a long time, the legend concludes, he made his famous cheerful remark, “It is well done. Turn me over!”

Stories:

A well-known legend has persisted from earliest times. As deacon in Rome, Lawrence was charged with the responsibility for the material goods of the church and the distribution of alms to the poor. When Lawrence knew he would be arrested like the pope, he sought out the poor, widows and orphans of Rome and gave them all the money he had on hand, selling even the sacred vessels to increase the sum.

When the prefect of Rome heard of this, he imagined that the Christians must have considerable treasure. He sent for Lawrence and said, “You Christians say we are cruel to you, but that is not what I have in mind. I am told that your priests offer in gold, that the sacred blood is received in silver cups, that you have golden candlesticks at your evening services. Now, your doctrine says you must render to Caesar what is his. Bring these treasures—the emperor needs them to maintain his forces. God does not cause money to be counted: He brought none of it into the world with him—only words. Give me the money, therefore, and be rich in words.”

Lawrence replied that the church was indeed rich. “I will show you a valuable part. But give me time to set everything in order and make an inventory.” After three days he gathered a great number of blind, lame, maimed, leprous, orphaned and widowed persons and put them in rows. When the prefect arrived, Lawrence simply said, “These are the treasure of the church.”

The prefect was so angry he told Lawrence that he would indeed have his wish to die—but it would be by inches. He had a great gridiron prepared, with coals beneath it, and had Lawrence’s body placed on it. After the martyr had suffered the pain for a long time, the legend concludes, he made his famous cheerful remark, “It is well done. Turn me over!”

Comment:

Once again we have a saint about whom almost nothing is known, yet one who has received extraordinary honor in the Church since the fourth century. Almost nothing—yet the greatest fact of his life is certain: He died for Christ. We who are hungry for details about the lives of the saints are again reminded that their holiness was, after all, a total response to Christ, expressed perfectly by a death like this.

Patron Saint of:

Cooks

Poor

Daily Meditation

Gospel of Freedom:

Your own holiness is the best “gospel of freedom” you can offer. If you are holy and happy, people will know you are somehow different, and they will want what you have.

Quote by S. Padre Pio:

If it is necessary to practice the virtue of patience on others, it is useful to firstly practice it on ourselves.

Divine Mercy Reflection

Reflections on Notebook Three: 189-236


We continue now to the third notebook that Saint Faustina filled with messages of Mercy from our Lord. As you enter into this notebook, pause and reflect upon all that you have read so far. Has it changed your perspective on life? Has it changed you? If it has, then continue down that same path and trust that the Lord will continue to do great things in your life. If it has not, reflect upon why!


Sometimes we need more than the words we read. We also need true prayer, deep prayer and what we may call “soaking prayer.” Consider this as you read through the reflections flowing from this notebook and allow the words to not only enter your mind, but to also enter deeper. Read them prayerfully and carefully. Speak to our Lord as Saint Faustina did. Read some more of her actual diary in addition to these reflections and learn from her humble and childlike faith.


The Lord wants to do great things in your life! Open the door, through prayer and reflection, and let Him in!


Reflection 222: Feeling Overwhelmed


There are days when you most likely feel overwhelmed on account of one thing or another. It may be that you find yourself with much responsibility and are anxious about being able to properly fulfill your duties well. Or you may feel overwhelmed for the opposite reason, finding that life seems to be at a standstill and you are not sure what to do next. In these moments, of feeling overwhelmed, we must make an act of trust in God. The truth is that God could enter any situation in an instant and transform it, enabling us to face what is before us with the ease of a child. But He doesn’t always do that. Sometimes He allows us to wait on Him so that the situation we face will help to purify us and urge us toward greater surrender and love. Know that God loves you and could do anything to immediately lighten your struggle. Knowing that will help you also realize that, at times, He remains at an apparent distance as an act of hidden Mercy. It’s a Mercy because His wisdom is perfect and He will always act in a way that is most fruitful for your soul (See Diary #1153).


Look at your life this day and identify that which has the appearance of being your greatest struggle. How does that make you feel? If you do feel overwhelmed then pause and try to see the wisdom of God. He will never abandon you and may actually be offering you a hidden gift of Mercy through which He is calling you to greater holiness than if He immediately made your burdens light and easy.


Lord, help me to trust in You especially when I feel overwhelmed by the hardships of life. May I never doubt Your perfect love and perfect wisdom in all things. Give me the grace to see beyond that which burdens me so as to discover the hidden Mercy You offer me to purify and strengthen my soul. I thank You for all things, dear Lord. Jesus, I trust in You.

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