• The food that makes us live forever

    From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Fri Apr 23 23:50:28 2021
    The food that makes us live forever

    When we receive from the Lord's table we unite ourselves to Jesus
    Christ, who makes us sharers in his body and blood and partakers of
    his divine life. Ignatius of Antioch (35-107 A.D.), an early church
    father and martyr, calls it the "one bread that provides the medicine
    of immortality, the antidote for death, and the food that makes us
    live for ever in Jesus Christ" (Ad Eph. 20,2). This supernatural food
    is healing for both body and soul and strength for our journey

    24 April - St. Mary "of Cleophas"
    Also known as Mary of Clopas

    24 April
    9 April (Armenian calendar; Catholic prior to 2001)
    23 May (Orthodox calendar)
    3 August (Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod calendar)

    "And there were standing by the cross of Jesus His mother and His
    mother's sister, Mary of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalen." How should we
    understand "His mother's sister," literally, as in having the same
    parents, or in the same sense that Jesus' "brothers" are to be
    understood as close relatives?

    The short answer is that Mary of Cleophas is probably the Blessed
    Virgin's sister-in-law. Mary of Cleophas may have had a previous
    husband named Alpheus, or this Alpheus may have been Cleophas. The
    Blessed Virgin Mary, of course, only had one husband (Joseph) and
    remained a virgin. The long answer follows.

    Jesus' relatives

    Reading the Bible, we find that Jesus had brethren named James,
    Joseph, Simon (Simeon) and Jude (Mt 13:55). We also know that His
    mother Mary had a "sister" called Mary. This other Mary in turn had a
    husband named Cleophas (Jn 19:25). I hope here to summarize and
    untangle this maze of relatives.

    First, let us see what the Gospels tell us. At the death of Jesus, we
    are told that Mary, wife of Cleophas/Clopas (Jn 19:25) was present. She
    was described as the mother of James and Joseph (Mt 27:56) in one
    account, and mother of James the Less and Joses in another (Mk 15:40).
    On the other hand, James is described as the son of Alphaeus in the
    synoptic Gospels' listing of the Apostles (Mt 10:3, Mk 3:18, Lk 6:15).
    We can infer that Mary wife of Cleophas is unlikely to be a true
    sister of the Virgin Mary, since they bear the same name. However,
    they are related in some way. This parallels the semitic use of
    "brother" in relating James to Jesus.

    An ancient historian named Hegesippus can shed further light. A native
    of Palestine, Hegesippus finished his Memoirs in the reign of Pope
    Eleutherius (AD 175-189) when he was an old man. He draws his
    information from personal sources, as he was able to question some
    surviving members of Jesus' family. Hegesippus can tell us that:

    "After the martyrdom of James, it was unanimously decided that Simeon,
    son of Clopas, was worthy to occupy the see of Jerusalem. He was, it
    is said, a cousin of the Saviour;" Hegesippus recounts in fact that
    Clopas was a brother of Joseph (Eusebius, Hist. eccl., III, 11).

    St. Epiphanius (Haer., LXXVII, 7) says the same and adds (ibid., 14)
    "that this Simeon, the son of Clopas, was a cousin of James the Just,"
    as Hegesippus says in another passage. (Prat, Jesus Christ, p. 505).

    Cleophas is the brother of Joseph (Jesus' adopted father). It follows
    that Cleophas' wife Mary is the Virgin Mary's sister in law, which
    explains why they can have the same name and are called sisters. It
    also follows that James is Jesus' cousin. Ferdinand Prat reasons:

    "We know, then that the mother of two of the brothers of the Lord was
    Mary of Cleophas, the sister of the Blessed Virgin. We also know that
    Cleophas, St Joseph's brother, was the father of a third, called Simon
    or Simeon. Since the remaining one, Jude, is always connected with
    Simon and is, like him, part of the family of David, it is natural to
    suppose that he was also a son of Cleophas.

    All the points that remain obscure would be cleared up, in our
    opinion, if two hypotheses are risked. Mary, the sister of the Blessed
    Virgin, having two sons, James and Joseph, by a first marriage, was
    married a second time to Cleophas, brother of St. Joseph, who also had
    two sons, Simon and Jude, by a former marriage. In light of the
    customs of the country and the age, there was nothing extraordinary in
    the marriage of a widow and a widower, each with children. The second hypothesis is that the sister of the Blessed Virgin had as her first
    husband a man of the tribe of Levi, called Alpheus.

    In this fashion nine or ten problems would be solved. Thus one could
    explain why James, Joseph, Simon and Jude are always named in that
    order, as brethren of the Lord; why James and Joseph are a pair
    distinct from Simon and Jude; why Mary, sister of the Blessed Virgin,
    is called the mother of James and Joseph and not the mother of Simon
    and Jude; why, according to Hegesippus, Simon and not James is the son
    of Cleophas; why, again according to Hegesippus, Simon and Jude are of
    the family of David; why, according to tradition, James was of
    sacerdotal ancestry; why the common opinion of Catholics identifies
    James, son of Mary, sister of the Blessed Virgin, with James the
    Apostle, the son of Alpheus; why Mary of Cleophas is called in the
    Gospel sister of the Blessed Virgin, when she was really her
    sister-in-law, being the wife of St. Joseph's brother; finally, why,
    after the deaths of Joseph and Cleophas, the two sisters brought their
    families together, so that thereafter the two families seemed to be
    but one." (Prat, Jesus Christ, p. 136-137).

    We do not hear of Cleophas or Joseph (Jesus' adopted father) in the
    Gospels during Jesus' adult life. We can imagine that after their
    deaths, the two families--deprived of their protectors and heads--came
    together under one roof. This would further strengthen their ties: the
    two Marys as "sisters" and Jesus and His cousins as "brothers". Gospel
    and tradition kept these names without denying Mary's perpetual

    Saint Quote:
    One must pass through the desert and spend some time there in order to
    receive the grace of God; it is there that one empties oneself, that
    one drives away from oneself everything which is not God and that one
    empties completely the house of one's soul in order to leave all of it
    to God alone.
    --Blessed Charles de Foucald

    Bible Quote:
     And he said to his disciples: It is impossible that scandals should
    not come. But woe to him through whom they come! It were better for
    him that a millstone were hanged about his neck and he cast into the
    sea, than that he should scandalize one of these little ones.  [Luk
    17:1-2] DRB

    Mary at the foot of the Cross

    "She is at the foot of the Cross on Calvary, though all the Apostles,
    St John only excepted, have fled; she stands erect there, firm in her
    faith that her Son is the Son of God, that He is the Lamb of God Who
    is even then taking away the sins of the world, that though apparently defeated, He is Victor over Satan and sin, and that in three days He
    will conquer death by His resurrection. Mary's act of faith on Calvary
    was the greatest ever elicited on earth, for the hour was unspeakably
    dark and its object was the most difficult of all - that Jesus had won
    the greatest of victories by making the most complete of immolations.
    Her faith was aided then by the gifts of the Holy Ghost. By the gift
    of Understanding she read far into the revealed mysteries, far into
    their inner meaning, their harmony, their appropriateness, their
    consequences. She was particularly favoured in her understanding of
    the mysteries in which she herself had a part to play, such as the
    virginal conception of Christ, His Incarnation, and the whole economy
    of the Redemption. ... It was increased also by the fact that Mary was confirmed in grace and preserved free from every shortcoming - lack of confidence as well as presumption."
    --Fr. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange:

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