Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Memorial of Our Lady of Ransom

It's not that difficult to guess who Our Lady of Ransom is, right? Yep, it's dear Mama Mary again. Read more about her here (or you can just look down):

- The Blessed Virgin appeared in 1218 in separate visions to St. Peter Nolasco, St. Raymond of Penafort and James the king of Aragon, asking them to found a religious order dedicated to freeing Christian captives from the barbarous Saracens or Moors, who at the time held a great part of Spain.
- On August 10, 1218, King James established the royal, military and religious Order of our Lady of Ransom (first known as the Order of St. Eulalia, now known as the Mercedarian Order). The work of the Mercedarians was in ransoming impoverished captive Christians (slaves) held in Muslim hands, especially ordinary people who had not the means to negotiate their own ransom (the "poor of Christ"). They also organized many hospices and hospitals and also established local charitable institutions such as almshouses.
- The order included religious priests who prayed and gathered the means for ransoming captives while the lay monks or knights went into the very camps of the Moors to buy back Christians, and, if necessary, take their places.
- This feast, once kept only by the Order, was extended to the whole Church by Pope Innocent XII in the 17th century.

Today's Bible Readings (24 Sep, Wed - 25th Week)

Proverbs 30: 5-9
Every word of God is purified;
he is like a shield for those who take refuge in him.
Do not add to his words,
lest he reprove you, and prove you to be a liar.
Two things I ask from you;
do not refuse me before I die:
Remove falsehood and lies far from me;
do not give me poverty or riches,
feed me with my allotted portion of bread,
lest I become satisfied and act deceptively
and say, “Who is the Lord?”
Or lest I become poor and steal
and demean the name of my God.

Luke 9: 1-6
After Jesus called the twelve together, he gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He said to them, “Take nothing for your journey – no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, and do not take an extra tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave the area. Wherever they do not receive you, as you leave that town, shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” Then they departed and went throughout the villages, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.