• Brief Teaching

    From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Wed Nov 10 23:49:26 2021
    Brief Teaching

    "Here is a brief teaching: you should realize that he gives with mercy
    when he gives and takes away with mercy when he takes away. Yet do not
    think that you are neglected by his mercy, since he either bolsters
    you through his gifts lest you weaken, or corrects you in your pride
    lest you perish."
    --St. Augustine--Commentary on Psalm 144, 4

    Prayer: Lord, you have become a refuge for us, that you might care for
    those who deserted you. You are a refuge so that you can encourage and
    guide your children.
    --St. Augustine--Sermon 55, 6

    November 11th - St. Mennas, Martyr

    THE outline of the legend of St. Mennas (Menas) is that he was an
    Egyptian by birth and a soldier in the Roman army. He was at Cotyaeum
    in Phrygia when the persecution of Diocletian began, whereupon he
    deserted and hid himself in the mountains, where he led a life of
    prayer and austerity. On the occasion of some games at Cotyaeum he
    left his hiding-place and displayed himself in the amphitheatre,
    announcing that he also was a Christian. He was arrested and brought
    before the president who, after having him beaten and tortured,
    ordered him to be beheaded. His remains were recovered and brought
    back to Egypt, where the miracles reported at his tomb soon made it a
    great centre of devotion. The cultus of St. Mennas spread far and wide
    in the East, his true history was overlaid and distorted by fictions
    and embellishments which brought him into the ranks of the "warrior
    saints ", and he was credited with absurd wonders) one of them (which,
    however, he shares with SS. Cosmas and Damian) being, in the words of Tillemont, "in the highest degree scandalous ".

    Father Delehaye is of the opinion that all that can be fairly
    certainly known about St. Mennas is that he was an Egyptian who was
    martyred and buried in his native place. Churches were built in his
    honour at, among other places, Cotyaeum, and these gave rise to
    mythical duplicates of the martyr connected with those cities. The
    great shrine of St. Mennas, built over his tomb, was at flumma (Karm
    Abu-Mina), south-west of Alexandria, which was a principal pilgrimage
    sanctuary until the Arab invasion in the seventh century. Its ruins,
    basilica, monastery, baths, secular buildings, were excavated by Mgr
    K. M. Kaufmann in 1905-08, who found innumerable traces of the former
    popular cultus of the martyr. Among them were numerous phials bearing
    such inscriptions as " Souvenir of St. Mennas ", which were shown to
    have been made to contain water from a well near the shrine.

    Such phials had been long previously found elsewhere in Africa and in
    Europe, and had hitherto been supposed to have contained " oil of St.
    Mennas taken from the lamps in the church. In 1943 the Orthodox
    patriarch of Alexandria, Christopher II, issued an encyclical letter
    in which he attributed the saving of Egypt from invasion at the battle
    of Alamein to "the prayers to God of the holy and glorious great
    martyr Mennas, the wonder-worker of Egypt "; and he put forward a
    project for restoring the saint's ruined sanctuary near Alamein as a
    memorial to the fallen.

    The Roman Martyrology mentions to-day another ST MENNAS, who was a
    solitary in the Abruzzi. He was a Greek from Asia Minor whose
    holiness and zeal are spoken of by Pope St. Gregory in his Dialogues.

    Like the great St. George, we have here to do with a martyr of whose
    historical existence, owing to his localized, wide-spread and early
    cult, we can hardly entertain a doubt, but whose story has been lost
    and supplied at a later date by deliberate fabrication. Starting from
    this primitive fiction it has been transmitted to subsequent
    generations with endless varieties of detail, and translated into many languages, oriental and western.

    <> The Greek passio is known to us in three distinct families, but
    the kernel recognizable in all of them has been obtained by the simple
    process of borrowing the story of another martyr and giving him a new
    name. The martyr in this case was St. Gordius, whose conflict is
    described to us in a panegyric preached by St. Basil. An immense
    amount of research has been lavished upon St. Mennas by such scholars
    as Krumbacher, Delehaye, P. Franchi de' Cavalieri, K. M. Kaufmann and
    others. What is of main interest is that the cradle of the cultus of
    this Egyptian martyr was brought to light in the present century
    through the excavations of Mgr Kaufmann. It has been described in his
    folio volume, Die Menas-stadt und das Nationalheiligtum der
    altchristlichen Aegypter (1910). Father Delehaye in particular has
    written very fully on the subject. See the Analecta Bollandiana, vol.
    xxix (1910), pp. 117-150; and vol. xliii, pp. 46-49; Origines du culte
    des martyrs (1933), pp. 222-223 and passim; Les passions des martyrs
    et les genres litteraires, pp. 388-389 ; and CMH., pp. 595-596. See
    also Budge, Texts relating to St. Mena of Egypt (1909) ; P. Franchi
    de' Cavalieri in Studi e Testi, vol. xix (1908), pp. 42-108 ; and H.
    Leclercq in DAC., vol. xi, cc. 324-397, where also is a full

    Saint Quote:
    A slight sabre-cut will separate my head from my body, like the spring
    flower which the Master of the garden gathers for His pleasure. We are
    all flowers planted on this earth, which God plucks in His own good
    time: some a little sooner, some a little later . . . Father and son
    may we meet in Paradise. I, poor little moth, go first. Adieu.
    --Saint Theophane in a letter to his father just before his martyrdom

    Bible Quote:
    Every individual is capable of sin and every individual can by God's
    grace repent of sin. As Jesus said in the parable about the rich man,
    "For God, everything is possible." (Matt. 19:25-26)


    Twenty-Sixth Day
    According to St. Paul, the Apostle, the honor and glory of God
    should be the principal motive of all our actions: "Whether you eat or
    drink, or whatsoever else you do; do all things for the glory of God"
    (I. Cor. x. 31.) "The glorification of God" ought to be our special
    aim in our works, most particularly in our acts of charity for the
    dead; and justly so, for, by delivering these holy souls, we lead them
    to Heaven, where alone God is perfectly known, loved, and glorified.

    If St. Teresa and other saints have declared their readiness to
    suffer all tortures imaginable for the promotion of God's glory in a
    single degree, what should not we do and suffer for the deliverance of
    these souls from the flames of Purgatory, since by doing so we
    increase His glory by millions of degrees, and not for one moment
    only, but for eternity!

    Prayer: Increase, O Lord! Thy honor and glory, that all created beings
    may praise Thy mercy forever, because Thou hast shown clemency towards
    the souls who love Thee and ardently desire to behold Thee. Comfort
    them, then, O Lord! Let them behold Thy face in the land of the
    blessed, where they shall honor, praise, and glorify Thee, world
    without end. Amen.

    Special Intercession: Pray for the souls, who, while on earth,
    promoted the glory of God.

    Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine
    upon them; may they rest in peace. Amen. (Three times)

    Practice: Make a good intention before every work which you perform.

    Invocation: My Jesus, mercy!

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