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Catholic Missal of the day: Monday, July 17 2023

Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time

Book of Exodus


A new king, who knew nothing of Joseph, came to power in Egypt.
He said to his subjects, "Look how numerous and powerful the Israelite people are growing, more so than we ourselves!
Come, let us deal shrewdly with them to stop their increase; otherwise, in time of war they too may join our enemies to fight against us, and so leave our country."
Accordingly, taskmasters were set over the Israelites to oppress them with forced labor. Thus they had to build for Pharaoh the supply cities of Pithom and Raamses.
Yet the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and spread. The Egyptians, then, dreaded the Israelites
and reduced them to cruel slavery,
making life bitter for them with hard work in mortar and brick and all kinds of field work--the whole cruel fate of slaves.
Pharaoh then commanded all his subjects, "Throw into the river every boy that is born to the Hebrews, but you may let all the girls live."



Had not the LORD been with us–
let Israel say, had not the LORD been with us–
When men rose up against us,
then would they have swallowed us alive,
When their fury was inflamed against us.
Then would the waters have overwhelmed us;
The torrent would have swept over us;
over us then would have swept the raging waters.
Blessed be the LORD, who did not leave us
a prey to their teeth.
We were rescued like a bird
from the fowlers’ snare;
Broken was the snare,
and we were freed.
Our help is in the name of the LORD,
who made heaven and earth.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew


Jesus said to his Apostles: “Do not think that I have come to bring peace upon the earth. I have come to bring not peace but the sword.
For I have come to set a man 'against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
and one's enemies will be those of his household.'
Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me;
and whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me.
Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.
Whoever receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet's reward, and whoever receives a righteous man because he is righteous will receive a righteous man's reward.
And whoever gives only a cup of cold water to one of these little ones to drink because he is a disciple--amen, I say to you, he will surely not lose his reward."
When Jesus finished giving these commands to his twelve disciples, he went away from that place to teach and to preach in their towns.

St. Alexius(Confessor (+404))

SAINT ALEXIUS Confessor(+404) St. Alexius was the only son of noble Roman parents. On his wedding-night, he secretly quitted Rome and journeyed to Edessa in the East. There, he gave away all his possessions and lived on alms at the gate of Our Lady's church. It came to pass that Alexius' servants, sent by his father, saw him at the Church's gate; and gave him alms without recognizing him. The encounter was God's way of testing Alexius' vocation, and a prefiguring of St. Francis of Assisi, the founder of evangelical poverty. From Alexius' actions, we can deduce that he chose a life of penance over the one decided by his parents. After seventeen years, when Alexius' sanctity was manifested by the Blessed Virgin's image, he once more sought blessed solitude. On his way to Tarsus, contrary winds drove his ship to Rome. There, no one recognized in the wan and tattered mendicant the heir of Rome's noblest house: not even his sorrowing parents. From his father's charity, he begged a mean corner of the palace for shelter, and the scraps of his table for food. Thus Alexius spent seventeen years, bearing patiently the ill-usage of his servants and witnessing the grief of his parents. At last, when death came for Alexius, his household learned, from a writing in his own hand, who it was that they had unknowingly sheltered. God bore testimony to His servant's sanctity by many miracles. St. Alexius received God by way of self-renunciation. "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Mt. 5:3). With nothing on earth to cling to, Alexius' spirit soared to the heights of contemplation in union with God. He went into eternity where his treasure was stored, and where he lives with our Lord and Lady forever.

Bl. Pavol Gojdič((1888+1960))

BLESSED PAVOL GOJDIČ Basilian Bishop and Martyr (1888-1960) Pavol Gojdič was born on July 17, 1888, at Ruské Pekľany near Prešov. He was from the family of the Greek-Catholic priest Štefan Gojdič. His mother's name was Anna Gerberyová. In baptism, they named him Peter. Peter attended the elementary school at Cigeľka, Bardejov and Prešov, finishing his primary studies at Prešov, which he concluded with his maturity exam in 1907. Responding to God's invitation to the priesthood, Peter began his study of theology at Prešov. Since he obtained excellent results, he was sent to continue his studies in Budapest a year later. There, he continued to live with profound reliance on the will of God. While still a seminarian, Peter was told by his spiritual director, "Life is not difficult, but it is a serious matter." Those words guided Peter throughout his life and made him remarkably prudent. Having finished his studies on August 27, 1911, he was ordained priest at Prešov by Bishop Dr. Ján Valyi. After his ordination, he worked for a short period as an assistant parish priest. After a year, he was appointed prefect of the eparchial seminary, and at the same time taught religion in a higher secondary school. Later, he was put in charge of protocol and the archives in the diocesan curia. He was also entrusted with the spiritual care of the faithful in Sabinov as an assistant parish priest. In 1919, he became the director of the episcopal office. To everyone's surprise on July 20, 1922, Fr. Peter joined the Order of St. Basil the Great at Černecia Hora, near Mukačevo. Taking the habit on January 27, 1923, he took the name Pavol. He made this decision as a sign of modesty, humility and a desire to lead an ascetic life. However, God had other plans, and Fr. Pavol was ordered to a higher office as bishop. On September 14, 1926, he was nominated Apostolic administrator of the eparchy of Prešov. During his installation as Apostolic Administrator, he announced the program of his apostolate: "With the help of God, I want to be a father to orphans, a support for the poor and consoler to the afflicted." The first official act of Pavol Gojdič in his office as newly appointed administrator of the eparchy of Prešov was to address a pastoral letter on the occasion of the 1100th anniversary of the birth of St. Cyril, the apostle of the Slavs. Thus Bp. Pavol began his activity in the spirit of the apostle of the Slavs. He was Slavic himself, and was very fond of the oriental rite. A short time later, on March 7, 1927, he was nominated bishop with the title of Harpaš (Church of Harpaš - in Asia Minor). His episcopal consecration took place in the basilica of San Clemente, Rome, on March 25, 1927, on the feast of the Annunciation of Our Lady. After his episcopal consecration, he visited the basilica of St. Peter in Rome, where he prayed at the tomb of the Apostle. On March 29, 1927, together with Bishop Nyaradi, he was received in a private audience by the Holy Father Pius XI. The pope gave Bishop Pavol Gojdič a gold cross saying: "This cross is only a faint symbol of the heavy crosses that God will send you, my son, in your work as bishop." For his episcopal program, he chose the motto, "God is love, let us love Him!" As bishop, he was engaged in the promotion of spiritual life of both clergy and faithful. He insisted on the proper celebration of the liturgy and of church feasts. Following new conditions, he erected new parishes, for instance, in Prague, Bratislava, Levoča and elsewhere. Thanks to his hard work, the orphanage at Prešov was built and entrusted to the local sisters. His activity in the scholastic field was outstanding, as is proved by the foundation of the Greek-Catholic school in Prešov in the year 1936. He supported also the teaching academy, the seminary and colleges. He was interested in every aspect of spiritual reading, which resulted in the launching of the review Blahovistnik (Messenger of the Gospel), Da prijdet carstvije Tvoje (Thy Kingdom Come) and various prayers, published by the PETRA publishing house. For his kindness, caring and charitable work, he was described as "a man with a heart of gold." An important characteristic of the bishop was his strong affection for the Eucharistic Savior, continually strengthened through his visits to the Blessed Eucharist in the chapel at his residence. Another characteristic, not less evident, of his spiritual life, was his devotion to the Sacred Heart. As a seminarian in Budapest, he had already consecrated himself to the Sacred Heart; and he confirmed it upon waking every morninng with the words, "All the prayers, sacrifices and crosses I offer to make up for the sins of the whole world!" One must not forget that the bishop had a great devotion to the Mother of God; and as as a Marian devotee, held in his residential chapel a picture of the Virgin of Klokočov, in front of which he prayed every day and to whose protection he entrusted himself and the whole eparchy. On April 13, 1939, he was appointed apostolic administrator in Slovakia of the Apostolic Administration of Mukačevo. In the difficult situation of the Slovak State, he became a "thorn in the flesh" for the representatives of the government of the time and so offered his resignation from the post. In fact, the present Holy Father appreciated his work and not only refused his resignation, but also made him residential bishop of Prešov. And so, on August 8, 1940, he was solemnly consecrated at Prešov. On January 15, 1946, Bp. Pavol was confirmed in his jurisdiction over the Greek-Catholics in the whole of Czecho-Slovakia. The progress in religious and spiritual life in the eparchy was interrupted by the events of war, and especially with the coming to power of the communists in 1948. Their ideological program made itself felt above all against the Greek-Catholic Church. Bp. Pavol resisted any initiative to submit the Greek-Catholics to Russian orthodoxy assisted by the communist party and the power of the state, even though he knew he was risking persecution and arrest - maybe even death. Gradually, he was isolated from the clergy and the faithful. Even though under severe pressure to renounce the Catholic faith and break unity with the Pope, Bp. Pavol refused every attractive offer and exclaimed: "I am already 62 and sacrifice all my goods and residence, but I will not deny my faith in any way because I want to save my soul. Do not even come to me." During the events known as the Sobor of Prešov, starting April 28, 1950, when the State outlawed the Greek-Catholic Church and forbade her activity, Bp. Pavol was arrested and imprisoned. Thus began his via crucis in many prisons of what was Czecho-Slovakia, which ended with his death. In the days from January 11 to 15, 1951, in a trial set up against the so called high treason bishops (Vojtaššák, Buzalka and Gojdič), Bp. Pavol was given a life sentence, fined two hundred thousand crowns and deprived of all his civic rights. Transfers from one prison to another followed, where Bp. Pavol suffered physical and psychological punishments and humiliations. He was forced to do the most difficult and degrading jobs. Howewer, he never complained and never asked to be relieved. He made use of all available time to pray and celebrated the sacred liturgy in secret. Following the amnesty in 1953, given by State President A. Zapotocký, his life sentence was changed to twenty-five years detention. He was then 66 and his health deteriorating. Yet, all further requests for amnesty were denied. Bp. Pavol Gojdič could only leave prison at the cost of his faithfulness to the Church and to the Holy Father. Various offers were made to him as is proven by an event that he recounted: In the prison of Ruzyň, he was received by a high-ranking official at an office after being brought out of his cell. The official informed him that he would go straight to Prešov on condition that he was willing to become patriarch of the Orthodox church in Czecho-Slovakia. The bishop refused this offer, excusing himself and explaining that this would be a very grave sin against God, a betrayal of the Holy Father, of his conscience and of his faithful, most of whom were then suffering persecution. Even in the most difficult situation, Bp. Pavol abandoned himself to the will of God, as can be seen from these words of his: "I do not really know whether it is a gain to exchange the crown of martyrdom with two or three years of life in freedom. But I leave the good Lord to decide." On the occasion of his 70th birthday, even the Holy Father Pius XII sent him a telegram in prison. In it, he assured him he would not forget his heroic son. A great desire of bishop Gojdič was to die comforted by the sacraments on his birthday. Both desires were fulfilled. Father Alojz Vrána was transferred to the room of the prison hospital of Leopoldov (Slovakia), where the bishop passed his last days, and could hear his confession. The chalice of suffering of Bp. Pavol was about to overflow. An eye witness of his last moments, František Ondruška, gave a unique testimony: The Bishop died on July 17, 1960, on the day of his 72nd birthday. He died in the hospital of the prison of Leopoldov from illnesses caused by maltreatment. He was afterward buried without ceremony in a nameless tomb at the prison cemetery, with only the prisoner number 681. As a result of the easing of the political situation in Czecho-Slovakia after 1968, the state authorities, after many delays, gave permission to exhume the mortal remains of Bp. Pavol Gojdič. This happened in the cemetery of Leopoldov on October 29, 1968, and was followed by the transfer of his relics to Prešov. By a decision of the authorities set up after the Soviet occupation, Bp. Pavol's remains were then transferred to the crypt of the Greek-Catholic Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Prešov. From May 15, 1990, they can be found in a sarcophagus in the chapel of the cathedral. Bp. Pavol Gojdič was legally rehabilitated on September 27, 1990. Subsequently, he was decorated posthumously with the Order of T. G. Masaryk - II class, and with the Cross of Pribina - 1st class. The Holy Father Pope John Paul II, during his visit to Slovakia, while visiting Prešov, prayed at the tomb of this bishop-martyr in the chapel of the cathedral. Bp. Pavol Gojdič was beatified on November 4, 2001.

The Blessed Martyrs of Compiegne()


Category: Mass by Year / Catholic Missal 2023 / Catholic Missal of july 2023

Published: 2023-11-27T19:31:30Z | Modified: 2023-11-27T19:31:30Z