日曆

一月紀念的聖人

一月1日:天主之母 (節日)Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God

 早於431年厄弗所大公會議,已宣認天主之母(誕神女)的信道,強調耶穌基督是真天主,也是真人。 天主子耶穌基督為了我們的得救,從天降下;他因聖神,由聖母瑪利亞取得肉軀,而成為人。

 同時,這信道也闡明天主的救世計劃,也需要人的合作。聖母瑪利亞,也就是天主救世計劃的合作者;她是我們的典範。

 1931年教會為紀念厄弗所大公會議1500周年,遂把「天主之母」慶日,移於聖誕後第八天(一月一日)慶祝。

(一月一日本來是羅馬神Janus的狂歡節日,教會移風易俗,以「天主之母節」取而代之。)

吳智勳神父「天主之母節」講道詞

根據路加福音2:16-24,耶穌誕生後八天,便被帶去聖殿行割損禮,取名叫耶穌,從此, 聖經上就稱瑪利亞為「耶穌的母親」,通常我們在聖經上看到的就是這樣。 聖經從來沒直接稱瑪利亞為「天主之母」,雖然聖母領報的時候,天使曾經說過你所生的要稱為天主的兒子, 但始終聖經沒直接提到聖母是「天主之母」,但很奇怪,教會自第二個世紀以來,一直都是這樣稱呼聖母為「天主之母」, 甚至在聖經還未被教會肯定之前,就已經這樣稱呼了。 教會稱呼聖母是「天主之母」一定有一個好深的意思,今日我先介紹一下「天主之母」這樣的一個稱呼在信理上的意義是甚麼, 然後,大家一齊反省:為甚麼這個時代還會這樣稱呼聖母?這個稱呼對我們這個時代的人還有甚麼意義?

首先,很簡單地介紹一下「天主之母」在信理上的意義。教會早就知道天主是無始無終的, 這個無始無終的天主是沒有母親的,但教會同時肯定一件事,就是天主降生成人。 聖經上很清楚地說:生於女人(迦4:4),而瑪利亞就是耶穌的母親。 為了肯定耶穌祂既是天主又是人,有真的天主性又有真的人性,教會在這個意義之下稱呼聖母為「天主之母」。 所以要小心,當我們講「天主之母」的時候,其實最主要是想顯示出耶穌的身份:祂是真天主又是真人。 聖經上顯示耶穌的天主性和祂的人性是很清楚的,無人可以否認。 耶穌作為一個人,在聖經上可以看見耶穌會疲倦﹑要睡覺﹑會肚餓﹑會口渴,祂很多時會傷感, 當祂朋友死時祂會流淚,這是人性的表現,所以很少人會否認耶穌是一個人; 至於作為天主,在聖經上我們見到耶穌會顯奇蹟,特別是祂寬赦人的罪 - 只有天主才會寬赦人的罪! 祂又派遣聖神來臨,因著祂這個天主性的身份,並且清楚祂自己的身份是怎樣,當權的人認為祂褻瀆天主, 所以才定祂死罪,至少當權的人給祂的罪名是這樣。 所以,聖經上清楚反映出耶穌祂是一個真的人,亦同時是一個真的天主。

初期的基督徒對基督的經驗是很新的,所以不難接受耶穌這一個特別的身份  - 在世界上找不到另一個這樣的人物,祂是一個真的人又同時是天主。 但是過了幾個世紀,早期的基督徒已死光了,基督徒慢慢就能夠對耶穌基督的天主性發生懷疑,事實上在自己教會裏是發生了。 耶穌作為一個人,大概很少人會否認,但作為天主,卻能夠對祂的身份發生懷疑, 有些人就會認為這一定是初期的門徒誇大了耶穌所做的一切,所以在第五世紀的時候, 就有一個君士坦丁的主教,名叫聶斯多略(NESTORIUS),他就認為天主聖子只是暫時寄居在一個名叫耶穌的人身上, 所以,耶穌這個人並不是真天主,只不過是天主子暫時寄居在他身上而已,所以聖母只是耶穌的母親,不是天主的母親, 在當時有個這樣的講法,但是教會很清楚,抨擊這種將耶穌的身份分裂的講法,稱它為異端。在第五世紀的時候, 有一個大公會議肯定了耶穌的身份,並宣稱「天主之母」這一個東西方教會都同時肯定的信理, 主要就是想告訴基督徒耶穌的真正身份是怎樣:祂是一個真天主亦是真人。

很簡單地介紹了「天主之母」在信理上的意義,可能你聽了之後仍是似懂非懂,在聽了我們教會歷史上有關這個名銜的爭論之後, 可能你仍然會質疑:在這個時代再講「天主之母」還有甚麼意思呢?這個名銜對我的信仰生活有甚麼幫助? 給我的信仰生活有甚麼啟示呢? 我覺得這一點可能更重要。 過去有關信理上的爭論,教會訂出了的一些東西,很可能我們就是這樣接受了,但是我們要問的也許是第二點, 我覺得我們在這個時代有許多人都像聖多默宗徒那樣:見了才信。 我們這個時代就是如此,因為科學太成功了,科學帶來的成就太大了,我們個個都感受到並且正享用科學的成果, 所以每個人(起碼大部份的人)對科學都有一種崇拜,太相信它,甚至崇拜到有時近乎迷信的地步。 即使我們的宗教信仰都受到這種相信科學的心態影響,許多時我們為了適應這種時代的人的要求, 甚至會將自己的信仰加上一個科學的包裝,因為加上一個科學的包裝,其可信性就高了,人家就會接受你的信仰, 所以,許多時我們這個時代的人又喜歡說奇蹟!我特別記得,在意大利有一件似乎每年都發生的事,就是一個聖人的血, 本來已經是凝固了的,但到了某一個時辰,特別是在他的瞻禮日那天,當拿出這凝固了的血的時候,它就會在你的面前, 甚至在許多電視機鏡頭對著之下,變成了液體。這件事似乎每年都會發生的。 我們這一代的人特別喜歡看這一類型的東西,看著它變的時候,基督徒就鬆一口氣,啊! 又靈驗了!我們會是這樣,很喜歡聽這些事,假如那一年不變的話,又會給一個藉口說: 「定是今年有些不幸的事情會發生!」總之,我們要將這些東西加上一塊神秘的面紗,令到科學好似無能為力, 或者說要過到科學這一關,我們的宗教信仰才是可信的。 如果有些東西過不到科學這一關,它的可信性就減低了,比方,當那說了很長時期的聖殮布過不到科學一關的時候,它的可信性就立刻低了許多。 許多時我們其實是很笨的,因為將自己的信仰放在科學之下,你會被它牽著鼻子走!所以大家要反省這一點。

為甚麼今日要提出這一點呢?當我們說「天主之母」是想突出耶穌基督真天主真人的身份,但這個身份是無需科學去鑑證的, 如果我們又拿科學出來,鑑證過才相信,我們的信仰就很糟糕了。 我們對耶穌基督這份信仰,不需要一些科學的包裝,亦不需要拿一些耶穌顯靈的照片出來。 有人喜歡將耶穌某一次顯現拍成照片拿出來,好像要拿出來才能使那對耶穌基督的信仰的可信性增高的。 這有一個危險性,就是太崇拜科學,認為一定要這樣鑑證才成。 要時常記得這一點: 我們的信仰不是建築在科學上,而是建築在耶穌基督的說話上,建築在耶穌基督的門徒的作證上, 他們用自己的血去證實耶穌所講所做的一切是真的,我們的信仰的根基是在這裏,而不是在科學的鑑證上,願意大家記得這一點。 所以相信耶穌基督真天主真人這端道理,完全是對耶穌基督的信仰。

「天主之母」這個稱呼,雖然說主要是肯定耶穌基督的身份,但不要忘記它始終是對聖母的一個稱呼 - 「天主之母」。 教會肯定對聖母這個稱呼的時候,是希望我們偕同聖母走向耶穌基督,在今日的福音就有一句說話很值得我們帶回家去,就是: 「瑪利亞把這一切牢記在心中,反覆思索。」(參閱路2:19)這是一句很深的說話,即是說,聖母在當時對於發生的事並不是很明白, 所以我自己就不相信聖母一開始就完全懂得天主降生奧蹟的道理。開始時是不懂的,就好像我們許多人在信仰早期一樣。 耶穌基督是真天主真人這個信理,聖母大概一開始都是不懂的,不要忘記聖母是一個普通的女孩子, 不是一個很會思想,讀了許多書的人,她是一個很簡單的人物,她面對著一個這麼深的信理,大概她當時都是不明的, 起碼聖經上有幾次說她將這些東西默存在心裏,反覆思量,作為她日後整個信仰生活反省的材料。 許多時在當時是不明白的,但她相信天主的話,這就是她有福的地方,這正如依撒伯爾對她所說的: 「那相信天主的話而會完成的,是有福的。」(參閱路1:45)而聖母就是這樣的一個人物,很值得我們效法的也就是這一點。 許多信仰上的東西,也許我們不太明白,特別在慕道的早期,甚至是在我們現在的信仰階段, 好可能你對自己信仰上許多道理都是一知半解,聖母今日就教我們,將這些話放在自己的心裏,在生活上反覆思量, 讓天主的恩寵慢慢在你身上產生作用,有一天你會豁然貫通,這一天在甚麼時候來,我們不清楚, 好可能在你生命裏很後期的時間才出現,使你突然之間懂得天主降生等等的道理, 但是願意將這些話放在自己心裏,相信耶穌基督的話,這個是我們信仰的根基。 所以我們今日的人既然是這麼受科學影響,好可能我們對許多在自己信仰上的東西仍然是會懷疑的, 可能我們間中都會懷疑一下究竟有沒有天主存在? 究竟聖經上所說的奇蹟是不是真的?耶穌是不是天主? 有一套電影說耶穌基督的最後的誘惑,這都是現代人只強調耶穌人性而產生的結果,就是不太相信祂天主性的一面。

今日我們不單只向聖母學習,將東西放在心裏反覆思量,還可以向她祈求,聖母不但是「天主之母」, 而且還是「教會之母」,亦是我們每一個基督徒的母親,做母親的特別知道自己子女需要的是甚麼東西,這正如在聖經上加納婚筵裏,(參閱若 2:1-12) 聖母很快便認出別人的需要是甚麼,她主動為他們祈求:「他們沒有酒了。」酒有一個象徵性的意義, 能夠代表著天主的恩寵,所以加納婚筵這個奇蹟,結果並不但是使到這對新人不用丟臉,最主要的﹑起碼聖經說它的結果,就是他們相信了耶穌, 所以,因著聖母的祈求,結果就是相信耶穌,我們都求聖母幫助我們能夠相信耶穌基督。 不知你們有沒有注意你們經常唸的聖母經,它的下半截是甚麼東西?下半截呼求「天主聖母瑪利亞」, 其實就是「天主之母」瑪利亞,這個就是再重覆早期教會對聖母的稱呼,肯定自己的信仰:聖母是「天主之母」 ,你是向「天主之母」瑪利亞呼求。求甚麼呢? 你若看清楚便知道原來聖母經沒告訴你求甚麼東西,只是求聖母為我們祈求而已, 所以,我們今日在「天主之母」這個瞻禮中,用聖母經向我們天上的母親呼求: 「天主之母」瑪利亞,求你現在和我們臨終時,為我們罪人祈求天主,賞賜信仰基督的恩寵。亞孟。因父及子及聖神之名,亞孟。

資料取自:

吳智勳神父,「和平綸音:主日聖道禮儀(丙年)」之二,天主之母節錄音帶,思維出版社,1995

(文稿由李宏基主教教友培育中心整理,未經講者審閱)

返回一 月聖人目錄

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一月1日:1/1: St. Fulgentius of Ruspe

(465-533)

Born to a Roman senatorial family. Well educated. Provincial fiscal procurator and lieutenant governor of Byzacena. He became a monk early in life, led to the religious life by the writings of Saint Augustine of Hippo, whose work remained a touchstone for him in the rest of his life. Priest. Abbot. Bishop of Ruspe (modern Kudiat Rosfa, Tunisia) in 508, an illegal election in the Arian controlled land following the invasion of the Vandals led by Thrasimund.

Exiled with 60 other bishops to Sardinia. There they built a monastery, and continued to write, pray, and study. He returned to Carthage in 515 to debate with Arians; he was so convincing that he was exiled again in 518. King Hilderic succeeded Thrasimund in 523, and permitted the exiles to return. Fulgentius preferred to return to his monastery and resume his studies, but he was such a popular preacher, he was kept busy in the pulpit until his death.

Eucharist quotes (1/1 St. Fulgentius of Ruspe)

“Hold most firmly and never doubt in the least that the Only-begotten God the Word Himself become flesh offered Himself in an odor of sweetness as a Sacrifice and Victim to God on our behalf; to whom, with the Father, and the Holy Spirit, in the time of the Old Testament animals were sacrificed by the patriarchs and prophets and priests; and to whom now, I mean in the time of the New Testament, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, with whom He has one Godhead, the Holy Catholic Church does not cease in faith and love to offer throughout all the lands of the world a sacrifice of Bread and Wine … In those former sacrifices what would be given us in the future was signified figuratively; but in this sacrifice which has now been given us, it is shown plainly. In those former sacrifices it was fore-announced that the Son of God would be killed for the impious; but in the present it is announced that He has been killed for the impious.” (The Rule of Faith [62])

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一月二日:聖巴西略 (主教、聖師)(紀念) St. Basil the Great (330-379)

教父、聖師 主保:醫院管理者

 聖巴西略說道:「你未曾食用的麵包,就是饑渴者的麵包;你懸掛在衣櫃裡的長袍,就是赤身露體者衣服; 你不穿的鞋子,就是赤足者的鞋履;你保持深鎖的錢財,就是窮人的錢財;你不願踐行的愛德,就是諸多你所干犯的罪過。」

 聖人330年時誕生於小亞細亞的凱撒肋雅( Caesarea 今日土耳其的東南方)。 他的父母皆出生貴族,且信仰甚篤,後來亦被教會冊封為聖人。 這個聖善的家庭育有十個子女,其中就有四位是教會公開列品的聖人(除了聖巴西略外,還包括與聖巴西略、聖額我略納齊盎齊名的聖額我略尼沙 St. Gregory of Nyssa 335-394)。

 聖人年輕時在君士坦丁堡求學,後來在雅典學習時,認識了聖額我略納齊盎 (St. Gregory Nazianzen 330-390,素有「神學家」的稱號),二人結為莫逆之交,後來都成了偉大的學者。 當越來越多的人慕名前來聆聽聖人的宣講時,聖人意識到一種驕傲的思想在他心內升起。 於是,他變賣所有財物,施與窮人後,便決定到曠野隱修去了。 他先在曠野中拜訪隱士們,然後將他們組織起來,並發展出一套完整的隱修規則與制度。 當時,他創建了極可能是小亞細亞的第一座隱修院。為東方的隱修制度而言,聖巴西略的地位就如同聖本篤之於西方教會一樣。 他所訂下的原則,至今對東方教會的隱修制度仍有著莫大的影響。 當聖人決定按福音的貧窮勸諭開始修道生活時,他已走在一條成為知名教師的路上了。

 聖人被祝聖為司鐸後,先擔任凱撒肋雅總主教的助理,隨後,自己也成了該地的總主教(370)。 不過,在他任內,曾有幾位副主教反對他,或許是因為這些人已預先看到那以後要來的革新吧!

 亞略異端是教會歷史中最危險的邪說之一,它否認基督的天主性,為正統信仰有極大的危害。 在聖人的時代,此番論述正達頂峰。當時的帝國皇帝華倫斯 (Valens) 迫害著具有正統信仰的信眾,並對巴西略施以壓力,要求聖人對迫害保持沉默,並強迫他接受亞略與教會的共融。 巴西略堅持不從,華倫斯只好放棄,但問題卻依然存在。當偉大的教師聖亞大納修 (St. Athansius 295-373) 辭世後,教會對抗亞略異端的重責大任就落在聖人的肩上了。 他付出極大的努力,將那些因暴政或內部分歧而四散的團體凝聚在一起,然而,卻因此被誤解、造謠中傷,且被控以邪說與野心。 在這樣的處境下,他雖求助於教宗的協助,卻未獲得任何的回應。他說:「因著我的罪過,每一件事都看似失敗。」

 聖人在牧靈關懷上總是孜孜不倦,他一日向群眾講道二次, 且創建了一座被稱為「一個世界的驚奇」的醫院(聖人年輕時曾為安頓饑荒者組織過一小團體,並親自在廚房中從事煮湯食的工作); 並且,為救助人靈,聖人也努力對抗賣淫業者。

 聖人的雄辯之才極負盛名;他的著作,在聖人尚在人世時,並未在教會內獲得應有的地位。 然而,在他過世72年後,加采東大公會議 (the Council of Chalcedon, 451)描述他為:「偉大的巴西略,將真理傳佈至整個世界的恩寵管理者。」聖人於主後三七九年的一月一日辭世,著作等身為他在教會內贏得「聖 師」的頭銜; 他所制定的隱修規則,則成為東方教會隱修院的圭臬。

1/2: St. Basil the Great

“The bread which you do not use is the bread of the hungry; the garment hanging in your wardrobe is the garment of him who is naked; the shoes that you do not wear are the shoes of the one who is barefoot; the money that you keep locked away is the money of the poor; the acts of charity that you do not perform are so many injustices that you commit.”

Basil was on his way to becoming a famous teacher when he decided to begin a religious life of gospel poverty. After studying various modes of religious life, he founded what was probably the first monastery in Asia Minor. He is to monks of the East what St. Benedict is to the West, and his principles influence Eastern monasticism today.

He was ordained a priest, assisted the archbishop of Caesarea (now southeastern Turkey), and ultimately became archbishop himself, in spite of opposition from some of his suffragan bishops, probably because they foresaw coming reforms.

One of the most damaging heresies in the history of the Church, Arianism, which denied the divinity of Christ, was at its height. Emperor Valens persecuted orthodox believers, and put great pressure on Basil to remain silent and admit the heretics to communion. Basil remained firm, and Valens backed down. But trouble remained. When the great St. Athanasius (May 2) died, the mantle of defender of the faith against Arianism fell upon Basil. He strove mightily to unite and rally his fellow Catholics who were crushed by tyranny and torn by internal dissension. He was misunderstood, misrepresented, accused of heresy and ambition. Even appeals to the pope brought no response. “For my sins I seem to be unsuccessful in everything.”

He was tireless in pastoral care. He preached twice a day to huge crowds, built a hospital that was called a wonder of the world (as a youth he had organized famine relief and worked in a soup kitchen himself) and fought the prostitution business.

Basil was best known as an orator. His writings, though not recognized greatly in his lifetime, rightly place him among the great teachers of the Church. Seventy-two years after his death, the Council of Chalcedon described him as “the great Basil, minister of grace who has expounded the truth to the whole earth.”

Eucharist quotes (1/2 St. Basil the Great)

“We should not accept in silence the benefactions of God, but return thanks for them.”

“Eternal Son of the living God, Whom I here acknowledge really present! I adore Thee with all the powers of my soul. Prostrate with the Angels in the most profound reverence, I love Thee, O my Savior, Whom I now behold on the throne of Thy love! O dread Majesty, O infinite Mercy! Save me, forgive me! Grant that I may never more be separated from Thee.”

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一月二日:聖額我 略.納齊安 (主教、聖師)(紀念) St. Gregory Nazianzen

 額我略.納齊安與巴西略同年出生於納齊安附近。為求學起見,多次遠行。在曠野中,與巴西略為友,亦先後祝聖為司鐸和主教。公元三八一 年當選為君士坦丁堡主教;因教區內發生黨派糾紛,乃返納齊安;三八九或三九○年一月二十五日安逝於該城,聖人博學善辯,故有「神學家」之稱。

Eucharist quotes (1/2 St. Gregory Nazianzen)

“Cease not to pray and plead for me when you draw down the Word by your word, when in an unbloody cutting you cut the Body and Blood of the Lord, using your voice for a sword.” (Letter to Amphilochius, Bishop of Iconium, ca. 383 A.D.)

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1月2-8的主日: 主顯節 (節日)The Epiphany of the Lord

 主顯節是聖誕慶祝期的高峰:慶祝基督最初的幾次顯示,包括:顯示給東方賢士(三王來朝),表示了天主子向萬民顯露了自己的身分;主受 洗時,將天主子的身分顯示出來;以及在加納婚宴中,藉變水為酒的記號,顯示新紀元的來臨。

 主顯節尤以基督向萬民(由東方賢士代表)顯示自己,作為核心意義,重申了基督乃萬民的救主;他來是為召叫普世人類,成為天主的新選 民,生活在主的慈愛、平安和光明當中。

 一月六日本是埃及尼羅河的河汛,埃及教友趁機以耶穌受洗,及加納婚宴的事件,來顯揚基督是天主子、人類的救主。羅馬教會採用了這埃及 教會的節日後,加上了賢士來朝的故事。

 今日羅馬教會在日課中的對經,把這三件「主顯示自己」的事件,連成一個救恩事蹟,讓我們體味:

 「今天教會與她天上的淨配結合;因為基督在約但河受洗,除去了她的罪過,賢士帶著禮品迅速前來,奔赴王家的婚宴,變水為酒,使賓客喜 形於色,亞肋路亞!」(晨禱讚主曲對經)

 「我們慶祝由三個奧蹟所裝飾的聖日,今日異星引導賢士,來到馬槽前,今日在婚宴之中水變成酒,今日基督為拯救我們,願在約但河中,接 受若翰的洗禮。亞肋路亞!」(晚禱謝主曲對經)

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一月3日:耶穌聖名 Holy Name of Jesus

 「耶穌」的名,是阿辣美語(Yeshua),解釋「天主拯救」。正是天主經天使,轉告瑪利亞(路1:31)和若瑟(瑪1:21),要 給嬰孩所起的名。這個名字說明耶穌的使命。教會常宣揚耶穌的名號,明認他是救主。

 自聖伯納定(St Bernardine of Siena,1380-1444)提倡,耶穌的名號更常受頌揚,且常以IHS為標記,顯揚耶穌聖名;又在聖母經加上「你的親子耶穌,同受讚 頌」。

 IHS乃「耶穌」之希臘文IHΣOYΣ的首三個字母;另一說法則以IHS為拉丁文Jesus Hominum Salvator,意思是「耶穌、人類救主」。

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一月四日:聖依麗莎 白安施頓 (修女)(紀念) St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

 依麗莎白一七七四年八月二十八日生於紐約市一家基督徒望族。她的父親是一位知名的內科醫生兼皇家醫學院解剖學教授,她的母親卡德琳• 貝蘭是一位基督教主教的女兒。絲彤很小的時候,她母親即與世長辭,父親將她養大成人。她從父親接受了很好的教育和品德的修煉。她從孩提時代就 特別關心窮人 和病人。她侍候病人體貼入微。人們稱她是一位「基督徒愛的天使。」她的著述洋溢著沁人心脾的崇高思想和爐火純青的神修品德。

 她十二三歲的時候,就懂得神修操練,根本不需要她的爸爸為她操心,她佩帶十字架,天天做反省、閱讀《師主篇》和聖經。

 一七九四年八月二十五日,她嫁給了一個青年商人,名叫威廉•梅及•絲彤,他們生了五個孩子,後來絲彤財運不佳,嚴重的影響了他的健 康,人們勸他換換環境,改變改變思想。意大利萊根有一個朋友名叫斐里奇邀請他和妻子、孩子遠渡重洋來意大利。他們於一八三O年抵達萊根,然而 六個星期之 後,威廉逝於比,隆。

 依麗莎白在斐里奇這家天主教家庭裏度過了她一個月的寡婦生涯。在此,她了解了天主教的信仰,很感興趣。這一家擁有一所家庭聖堂,而且 特別敬禮聖母,她參與了他們的全部宗教活動,當她返回美國的時候,她的內心已經是一位天主教徒了。

 一八O五年三月四日,她加入了天主教會。為此她的基督教親友群起反對,甚至剝奪了她的生活必需品,面對這一切遭遇,她默默地予以忍 受。後來她應巴帝毛修院長杜邦神父的邀請,前往加拿大,在帕卡街上聖瑪麗修院附近辦一所女子學校。她接受了這一任務,很快就有許多婦女前來獻 身做她的助 手,很多學生前來就學,而且一致要求將學校改為修院。巴帝毛教區主教幫她製定了修會的會規,並且指導她接受女生度修女生活。主教接受了她的意 願,允許她度 修女的生活,委任她為該團體的領導。

 一八O九年她遷往瑪利蘭的一個小村莊依米茲堡,在這裏她遵照聖文生保祿的會規培育仁愛會的修女。她奠定了美國教區學校體係的基礎,培 訓了教師,編訂了教材,並擬寫了許多神修論文。她看顧病人,周濟窮人,她開辦了費城和紐約的孤兒院,感化了許多人改邪歸正。

 她積勞成疾,於一八二一年一月四日閉上了雙目,離開了塵世。一九七五年九月十四日教宗保祿六世為她聖品。由於她是一位經歷了一個女性 所能經歷的青春、處女、婚姻、寡婦和神修各個階段,教廷把她的立品日定為婦女節。

警言:「她的崇高的品質是對窮苦罪人的同情與寬容,她的愛德使她一貫堅持對人從不批評而為別人開脫或者沉默不語。」----- 安東尼奧•斐里奇。

1/4: St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (1774-1821)

“The first end I propose in our daily work is to do the will of God; secondly, to do it in the manner he wills it; and thirdly, to do it because it is his will.”

Mother Seton is one of the keystones of the American Catholic Church. She founded the first American religious community for women, the Sisters of Charity. She opened the first American parish school and established the first American Catholic orphanage. All this she did in the span of 46 years while raising her five children.

Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton is a true daughter of the American Revolution, born August 28, 1774, just two years before the Declaration of Independence. By birth and marriage, she was linked to the first families of New York and enjoyed the fruits of high society. Reared a staunch Episcopalian by her mother and stepmother, she learned the value of prayer, Scripture and a nightly examination of conscience. Her father, Dr. Richard Bayley, did not have much use for churches but was a great humanitarian, teaching his daughter to love and serve others.

The early deaths of her mother in 1777 and her baby sister in 1778 gave Elizabeth a feel for eternity and the temporariness of the pilgrim life on earth. Far from being brooding and sullen, she faced each new “holocaust,” as she put it, with hopeful cheerfulness.

At 19, Elizabeth was the belle of New York and married a handsome, wealthy businessman, William Magee Seton. They had five children before his business failed and he died of tuberculosis. At 30, Elizabeth was widowed, penniless, with five small children to support.

While in Italy with her dying husband, Elizabeth witnessed Catholicity in action through family friends. Three basic points led her to become a Catholic: belief in the Real Presence, devotion to the Blessed Mother and conviction that the Catholic Church led back to the apostles and to Christ. Many of her family and friends rejected her when she became a Catholic in March 1805.

To support her children, she opened a school in Baltimore. From the beginning, her group followed the lines of a religious community, which was officially founded in 1809.

The thousand or more letters of Mother Seton reveal the development of her spiritual life from ordinary goodness to heroic sanctity. She suffered great trials of sickness, misunderstanding, the death of loved ones (her husband and two young daughters) and the heartache of a wayward son. She died January 4, 1821, and became the first American-born citizen to be beatified (1963) and then canonized (1975). She is buried in Emmitsburg, Maryland. 

Eucharist quotes (1/4 St. Elizabeth Ann Seton)

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton received great solace by bringing her sorrows to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and speaking heart to heart with Him there: “How sweet, the presence of Jesus to the longing and harassed soul! He is instant peace and balm to every wound.”

"God is everywhere, in the very air I breathe, yes everywhere, but in His Sacrament of the Altar He is as present actually and really as my soul within my body; in His Sacrifice daily offered as really as once offered on the Cross,"

“There is a mystery, the greatest of all mysteries—not that my adored Lord is in the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar—His word has said it, and what so simple as to take that word which is truth itself?—but that souls of His own creation, whom He gave His life to save, who are endowed with His choicest gifts in all things else, should remain blind, insensible, and deprived of that light without which every other blessing is unavailing!”

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1/4: Bl. Angela of Foligno

(1248-1309)widow, mother, secular Franciscan

Source: http://www.saintpatrickdc.org/ss/0104.shtml

Born in Foligno (near Assisi), Italy, Blessed Angela was self-indulgent early in life, living a worldly life of riches. She was quite young when she married, and when she was widowed about 1290. Around that time she experienced a conversion and joined the Third Order of Saint Francis. Once her husband and all her children had died, she gave herself up completely to God. Consistent with a life dedicated to penance, she donated all her possessions to the poor and lived only on charity.

Angela is remembered as a mystic, a form of spirituality that gained prominence in the Western Church around the mid-11th century. Mysticism is an attempt to reach a knowledge of and union with God directly and experientially. The mystic renounces his senses and the images they offer of God, called the via negativa, in order to allow God to replace them.

Mysticism is characterized by an abnormal psychic state which may culminate in ecstasy. Such states are sanctified when the individual is perfectly united with God and the whole personality is fully free; otherwise, it may simply be a sign of psychosis. True mystical experience leads the individual to an ever more passionate love of God. As a rule, mystics exhibit extraordinary self-knowledge.

At the request of her confessor, Friar Arnold, Angela dictated to him an account of her visions and ecstasies in which she reveals herself as one of the greatest mystics. Authentic transcriptions of the visions and messages of Blessed Angela are now housed in Assisi, Subiaco, and Rome. These originals are much more vivid than the logical arrangements made from them in the 15th century and reproduced by the Bollandists. They make it possible to sense the overwhelming religious ecstasy of Blessed Angela.

In them it is especially the Passion that we relive with her: a vision of absolute torture in which even the words of Christ seem to be heard:

"Then, as He was showing me all that He had endured for me, He said to me: 'What can you do which suffices you?' . . . He showed me His torn beard, His eyebrows and His head; He enumerated the entire list of His sufferings of the scourging . . . and He said: 'I suffered all that for you . . .' and He said: 'What can you do for me which suffices you?' And then I wept and moaned so ardently that the tears burnt my flesh. Then I had to pour cold water on myself to cool off."

". . . When I had arisen for the prayer, Christ appeared to me on the Cross . . . And He called me and told me to put my mouth on the wound on His side. And it seemed to me that I saw and drank His blood flowing from His side . . . and He purified me. And then I experienced a great joy, although contemplating the Passion I felt very sorrowful. And I prayed to God to have me, as He Himself had done, shed all my blood."

"And He began by saying to me: 'My daughter, sweet to me, my daughter, my delight, my temple, my daughter, love me, for you are greatly loved by me, more than you love me.'."

"And I swooned and lost the use of my speech. And it seemed to me that my soul entered into the side of Christ; and it was not sadness, but a kind of indescribable joy."

"On Thursday of Holy Week I went to meditate upon the incarnate Son of God . . . and a divine voice spoke to my soul, saying: 'I did not love you as a joke.' These words caused me mortal pain for immediately the eyes of my soul were opened and I saw all that He suffered in life and death . . . and that it was not as a joke but because of perfect and tender love that He loved me. And I say that it was just the opposite with me; for I only loved Him as a joke and not really. And it caused me mortal pain and such unbearable suffering that I thought I would die.

"And after He had said: 'I did not love you as a joke' . . . He said: 'I did not serve you by pretending. . . .' My soul then exclaimed: 'Oh master, what you say is not in your heart fills mine completely. For I never wished to approach You in truth so as to feel the pains you bore for me. And I served You only through simulation and falsehood.' . . . And on seeing just the opposite in me such pain and suffering filled my heart that I thought I would die; and I felt as if the sides of my chest were being disjoined and that my heart would burst . . . And He continued, saying: 'I am closer and more intimate with your soul than your soul is with itself!' And this increases my suffering."

This is just a small sampling of Blessed Angela's writing about her mystical experiences.

The collection of the Rotuli is enriched by a large number of letters or notes that Angela wrote to her disciples and in which she develops her spiritual doctrine. Through poverty and detachment, she lead them to the contemplation of the Passion. In the midst of the doctrines of the so-called Spirituals, among whom she lived, Angela defended orthodoxy. She and her group trace out a road on which all the ardor of human love as well as contemplation aspire to be united to divine wisdom. She died surrounded by many of these male and female disciples whom she loved as children. Considered by her contemporaries as a saint, Angela became the subject of a faithful cultus immediately after her death--a cultus that has been approved by the Church (Benedictines, Encyclopedia, Harrison, Martindale).

Eucharist quotes (1/4 Bl. Angela of Foligno)

“If we but paused for a moment to consider attentively what takes place in this Sacrament, I am sure that the thought of Christ's love for us would transform the coldness of our hearts into a fire of love and gratitude.”

“My soul, if you wish to penetrate the depths of this Mystery, your gaze must be illumined by Love! You need to see and understand! Contemplate the Last Supper: see Jesus Who knows that He will soon be separated from the body of His humanity, and yet wishing to be united to us forever; contemplate the Love by which He institutes this Sacrament which permits Him to be corporeally and forever united to mankind. O Inextinguishable Love! O Love of Christ! O Love of the human race! What a true Furnace of Love! O Jesus, You already saw the death which awaited You; the sorrows and atrocious tortures of the Passion were already breaking Your Heart, and yet You offered Yourself to Your executioners, and permitted them, by means of this Sacrament, to possess You forever as an Eternal Gift, O You, Whose delights are to be with the children of men!”

“O my soul, how can you refrain from plunging yourself ever deeper and deeper into the love of Christ, who did not forget you in life or in death, but who willed to give Himself wholly to you, and to unite you to Himself forever?”

“O God, O Creator, O Spirit of Life overwhelming Your creatures with ever new graces! You grant to Your chosen ones the gift which is ever renewed: the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ!”

“O Jesus, You instituted this Sacrament, not through any desire to draw some advantage from it for Yourself, but solely moved by love which has no other measure than to be without measure. You instituted this Sacrament because Your love exceeds all words. Burning with love for us, You desired to give Yourself to us and took up Your dwelling in the consecrated Host, entirely and forever, until the end of time. And You did this, not only to give us a memorial of Your death which is our salvation, but You did it also, to remain with us entirely and forever.”

“It is the Sacrament of Love that excites the soul to ardent prayer. It stirs up the virtue of impetration and, as it were, forces God to grant our petition. It deepens the abyss of humility, above all it enkindles the flame of love in the heart; hence the Sacrament is the Gift of gifts, and the Grace of graces.”

“O Jesus Christ true God and true Man! My soul rejoices to find You in the Blessed Sacrament, You the uncreated God who became man, a creature! In this sacrament, O Christ, I find both Your humanity and Your divinity; from Your humanity I rise to Your divinity; and from it I go back to Your humanity. I see Your ineffable divinity which contains all the treasures of wisdom, of knowledge, of incorruptible riches. I see the inexhaustible fountain of delights which alone can satisfy our intelligence. I see Your most precious soul, O Jesus, with all the virtues and gifts of the Holy Spirit, a holy and unspotted oblation; I see Your sacred Body, the price of our redemption; I see Your Blood, which purifies and vivifies us; in brief, I find treasures which are so precious and so great that I cannot comprehend them.”

“This Sacrament really contains You, O my God, You whom the Angels adore, in whose presence the Spirits and mighty Powers tremble. Oh! if we could only see You clearly as they do, with what reverence would we approach this Sacrament, with what humility would we receive You.”

“O Most Holy Trinity, You instituted this Sacrament in order to obtain the object of Your love, that is, to attract to Yourself the soul of Your creature, and detaching it from all earthly things, to unite it to Yourself, the uncreated God. In doing this, You make it die to sin and give it spiritual life, eternal life. O Blessed Trinity, this Sacrament was instituted by Your infinite goodness that we might be united to You and You to us; that we might receive You into ourselves and be received by You; that at the same time we might hold You within ourselves and be held by You.”

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一月五日:聖若望紐 曼(主 教)(紀念) St.John Neumann

 紐曼於一八一一年三月二十八生於捷克波希米亞。他家六個孩子,他是老三,他在中學學習的時候,就表現出非凡智力。中學畢業以後,一八 三一年進入教區修院並在布拉格大學上課,對生物學和天文學很感興趣。由於政府的干預,推遲了他晉鐸的時間,他決定到北美傳教區去工作。

 一八三六年六月二十五日到達紐約之後,他從杜波主教手中接受了神品。做了四年傳教工作,他加入了救世主會,該會是聖亞爾豐索.利高元 烈創立的,不久他被選為美國救世主會副會長。

 由於他傑出的工作,一八五二年教宗比約九世擢升其為費城主教,他為發展教區學校歷盡艱辛。他努力吸引修士女教師到他的教區來服務,除 此之外,他還開發了大批堂口並開始修建總堂,美國移民的宗教信仰工作也委任他來管理。他編寫了《教友問答手冊》,這本小冊子於一八五二年出 版,日後在美國 廣為使用。他的一生是勤勞的一生。他於一八六O年一月五日逝世,教宗保祿六世於一九七七年將他列入聖品。

 他常常說:「人必須時時刻刻做好準備,因為隨時隨地都可以來臨。」

1/5: St. John Neumann (1811-1860)

Feastday: January 5

This American saint was born in Bohemia in 1811. He was looking forward to being ordained in 1835 when the bishop decided there would be no more ordinations. It is difficult for us to imagine now, but Bohemia was overstocked with priests. John wrote to bishops all over Europe but the story was the same everywhere no one wanted any more priests. John was sure he was called to be a priest but all the doors to follow that vocation seemed to close in his face.

But John didn't give up. He had learned English by working in a factory with English-speaking workers so he wrote to the bishops in America. Finally, the bishop in New York agreed to ordain him. In order to follow God's call to the priesthood John would have to leave his home forever and travel across the ocean to a new and rugged land.

In New York, John was one of 36 priests for 200,000 Catholics. John's parish in western New York stretched from Lake Ontario to Pennsylvania. His church had no steeple or floor but that didn't matter because John spent most of his time traveling from village to village, climbing mountains to visit the sick, staying in garrets and taverns to teach, and celebrating the Mass at kitchen tables.

Because of the work and the isolation of his parish, John longed for community and so joined the Redemptorists, a congregation of priests and brothers dedicated to helping the poor and most abandoned.

John was appointed bishop of Philadelphia in 1852. As bishop, he was the first to organize a diocesan Catholic school system. A founder of Catholic education in this country, he increased the number of Catholic schools in his diocese from two to 100.

John never lost his love and concern for the people -- something that may have bothered the elite of Philadelphia. On one visit to a rural parish, the parish priest picked him up in a manure wagon. Seated on a plank stretched over the wagon's contents, John joked, "Have you ever seen such an entourage for a bishop!"

The ability to learn languages that had brought him to America led him to learn Spanish, French, Italian, and Dutch so he could hear confessions in at least six languages. When Irish immigration started, he learned Gaelic so well that one Irish woman remarked, "Isn't it grand that we have an Irish bishop!"

Once on a visit to Germany, he came back to the house he was staying in soaked by rain. When his host suggested he change his shoes, John remarked, "The only way I could change my shoes is by putting the left one on the right foot and the right one on the left foot. This is the only pair I own."

John died on January 5, 1860 at the age of 48.

Eucharist quotes (1/5 St. John Neumann)

Jesus speaking to St. John Neumann on establishing Forty Hours Devotion - “(I shall) pour out my grace in the Blessed Sacrament without prejudice to My honor. Fear no profanation, therefore; hesitate no longer to carry out your design for my glory.”

St. John Neumann's favorite prayer during the solemn 40-hours exposition:
How much I love You, 0 my Jesus. I wish to love You with my whole heart; yet I do not love You enough.
My lack of devotion and my sloth make me anxious. I have one desire, that of being near you in the Blessed Sacrament. You are the sweet bridegroom of my soul, my Jesus, my love, my all; gladly would I endure hunger, thirst, heat and cold to remain always with You in the Blessed Sacrament.
Would that in your Eucharistic presence I might unceasingly weep over my sins. Take entire possession of me. To you I consecrate all the powers of my soul and body, my whole being. Would that I could infuse into all hearts a burning love for You. What great glory would be given to You here on earth, if every heart were an altar on which every human will were laid in perfect conformity with Your will to be consumed by the fire of Your love.

Quote:

"All people of whatever race, condition or age, in virtue of their dignity as human persons, have an inalienable right to education. This education should be suitable to the particular destiny of the individuals, adapted to their ability, sex and national cultural traditions, and should be conducive to amicable relations with other nations in order to promote true unity and peace in the world. True education aims to give people a formation which is directed towards their final end and the good of that society to which they belong and in which, as adults, they will have their share of duties to perform." (Declaration on Christian Education, 1, Austin Flannery translation).

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一月6日:聖安德烈 貝塞特 (修士) St. Andre Bessette

(1845-1937)

 聖安德烈貝塞(St Andre Bessette),也被稱為蒙特利爾的聖安德烈(St Andre of Montreal),1845-1937。在他對聖若瑟的強大信任啟發下,他向每一個受折磨的人推薦這位聖人的敬禮。他經常探訪病人,會建議 病人向聖若瑟 祈禱,並會用小許從他學校的教堂裡,聖若瑟祭台前常明燈處取的油,為病人傅油。人們聲稱,他們因這位善良修士和聖若瑟的代禱而得到痊癒,並感 謝他們的代禱 被垂聽。1924年,他開始了蒙特利爾聖若瑟小教堂的施工。

Biography:

Br. André Bessette called himself St. Joseph’s little dog. He was born in Saint-Grégoire d’Iberville Québec, Canada, August 9, 1845, and raised in a devout French Catholic family. By the time Br. André was twelve, both of his parents had died, and he was sent to live and work with relatives. Br. André’s father was a carpenter like St. Joseph and his mother had a great devotion to St. Joseph which she passed on to little André, who was a sickly child. Br. André “had already often thought of Saint Joseph watching over the Child Jesus and he had made up his mind to imitate this saintly Workman, for he also was to watch over the Infant God Whom he carried at all times in his soul by divine grace and Whom he received with such deep piety in Holy Communion” (Br. André: The Wonder Man of Mount Royal, H. P. Bergeron, CSC, 15).

Br. André faced many challenges, especially as he tried to become a Holy Cross Brother. He grew in holiness and received the great gifts of compassion for the sick and healing, through the intercession of St. Joseph. He wanted to build a Shrine to St. Joseph on Mt. Royal across from the college where he worked as a doorkeeper, in Montréal, Québec. He began with poor health, little education and no money and even his own Brothers’ said it was impossible. Still, Br. André placed total faith in God and the assistance of St. Joseph. A medal of St. Joseph was buried in the ground, where Br. André wished to build the Shrine, and countless prayers were offered. Miracles happened. A small Church was built, then a larger one. When the walls stood and there was no money for a roof, Br. André placed a statue of St. Joseph in the middle and said that the Saint would provide his own shelter; with Br. André’s help and hard work he did. St. Joseph’s home kept growing!

Br. André led weekly Stations of the Cross and a Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration in the small chapel. So great was Br. André’s love for the Blessed Sacrament that he often spent his nights in prayer before Jesus. Br. André’s bedroom, in which he cared for the sick and dying throughout the night, overlooked the chapel. Br. André cut out a window in his room so he could look at the tabernacle and pray to Him day and night.

It is often said that a dog is a man’s best friend. Br. André, St. Joseph’s little dog, certainly deserves the title of his best friend. Sometimes it was as if he was speaking with St. Joseph, said those who saw him in prayer. Br. André’s advice to those wanting cures was simple: “Rub yourself with the blessed medal [of St. Joseph] and with St. Joseph’s oil. Make a novena”. Br. André encouraged novenas of Holy Communions, the Sacrament of Confession and the Stations of the Cross.

Br. André died on January 6, 1937, on the Feast of the Epiphany. A million people traveled to Montréal in the cold and snow to pay their respects to Br. André. Above all, Br. André desired for people to grow close to God and be healed. He was willing to offer up any sacrifice for the conversion of one soul. Br. André cared deeply about the sick, poor and suffering of the world. Today, when visiting the St. Joseph’s Oratory, it is amazing to see the thousands of crutches and braces left behind by those who were cured. People continue to pray, through the intercession of St. Joseph and Br. André, for their many needs. In the words of Br. André: “Seldom have I met someone who has come to the shrine and left without consolation, without feeling better about life.” “Place yourself in God’s hands. He will not abandon you.” Yearly, over two million people visit St. Joseph’s Oratory in Montreal, the largest shrine in the world to St. Joseph! Br. André is entombed there.

Eucharist quotes (1/6 St. Andre Bessette)

St. Andre Bessette often spent long nights in adoration of our beloved Lord. From this he consoled and healed thousands of people while remaining a simple doorkeeper as a Brother for the Congregation of The Cross. Let us imitate him and sign up for at least a weekly Holy Hour of adoration at our local Eucharistic Adoration program.

“What would your wife say if you were a whole month without showing her any marks of affection? She would say that you do not love her. You would cause trouble in your home. Well, when you do not receive Communion God says to Himself that you do not love Him. And there is trouble in your soul.”

“If you ate only one meal a week would you survive? It is the same for your soul. Nourish it with the Blessed Sacrament.”

“Receive the Holy Communion often. Our Lord cannot refuse you anything when He is there in your heart. You will find strength and solace in this act.”

“O Holy angels, make me see God on the altar as you see Him in heaven.”

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一月6日後主日:主 受洗節 (慶日)The Baptism of the Lord

若主顯節在1月7-8日,主受洗節則移於翌日星期一。

 主受洗節本來是主顯節的內容之一;梵二後,成為結束聖誕期的節日,也是常年期的開始,因為主的受洗,是他公開傳教生活的開始。

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一月7日:聖雷孟 (司鐸) St. Raymond of Penyafort

主保:教會法編撰者

 1175年,聖雷孟誕生於西班牙的巴塞隆納附近;由於他是西班牙的貴族成員之一,因此從小便接受了極完備的教育,且很早就對聖母懷有 一份溫柔的愛與崇敬。聖人20歲時,已是一位名聞遐邇的哲學教師,他在30歲時同時取得了教會法與民法的博士學位。然而,他卻拋開一切世俗的 光榮,毅然地 在41歲時加入了「道明會」。

 當時的教宗額我略九世非常賞識他,將聖人召喚至羅馬為他工作,並成為教宗的個人告解神師。他在羅馬的主要工作是:彙整過去教會歷史 中,所有教宗與大公會議的典章律例,這巨大的工程在聖人接手前已進行了80個年頭。最後,聖人編出了一套五本名為《教會律例大全 -Corpus decretalium》的教會法典彙編。1917年新的教會法典彙編出版前,這部「教會律例大全」是最好的教會法典參考。稍早,他也曾寫過 一部助人善行 告解的著作,名為《個案大全-Summa de casibus poenitentiae》,那不僅是一部條列罪與補贖的著作,還更是討論教會道理與法律的書籍,是聽告解神師必備的工具書之一。

 60歲時,聖人被教宗指定為Aragon首都Tarragona的總主教,但他並不喜歡如此的尊榮,後來藉病重之名,二年後辭去了主 教的職務。然而,聖人卻無福享受平靜的生活,因為隔年即被自己的同會弟兄選為道明會的總會長。於是,聖人只好努力地工作,徒步拜訪所有的道明 會士,且修訂 會憲,允許總會長於任內辭去職務。新會憲通過的那一年,聖人時年65歲,他也順利地辭去了總會長的職務。

 生命的最後35年,聖人致力於對抗異端邪說與勸說摩爾人(Moors)皈依的工作。他為人極其謙和,且非常親近天主;他常做克苦,其 良善與仁慈也常為天主贏得罪人們的靈魂。聖人與Aragon的國王James、St. Peter Nolasco一起創建了「Our Lady of Ransom」修會,該修會致力於從摩爾人的手中救回被俘的可憐基督徒。

 James國王本是位秉性良善的人,可惜,他卻常隨自己的偏情私欲而行。一次,聖人與他一同前往瑪約卡島(the Island of Majorca)宣講耶穌基督,但King James卻立了壞榜樣,因為王在該島上與一位婦女有著苟且的關係,聖人命令王遣走那婦女,王雖口頭答應,卻未信守承諾,於是聖人便離開了那 座島。王盛 怒,便下令:凡載送聖人回巴塞隆納的船長,都應受嚴厲的懲罰。聖人只好全心信賴上主,於是他將自己的上衣平鋪在海面上,將其中的一端綁上木柴 做帆,劃了十 字聖號之後,便腳踏自己的上衣,一路航行了六小時,最後安抵巴塞隆納。國王被此神蹟所感動,於是對自己的行為深感愧疚,並且認真地追隨聖人的 教導。最後, 聖人一百足歲之時,天主才讓聖雷孟完全地從人世間退休。

「你們的純潔和虔誠要求應得的報酬;因為你們為天主所悅納,願你們的純潔由於不斷的打擊,而愈加純潔,直到完美的境界。如果你們一而 再,再而三地受天主的利劍打擊,應視其為圓滿的喜樂、是天主愛你們的標記。

天主的利劍內外鋒利:外有戰爭,內有恐懼;天主再再地磨練你們,是因為狡猾的惡神常以詭計和陰謀擾亂你們的內心。這一切的攻守,你們已 有相當的體驗,否則便不會獲致內心如此美好的平靜與安寧。…

切望慈愛與和平的天主親自使你們心靈安寧,並加速你們現世的旅程。也願祂將你們暫放在祂的身旁,遠離他人的騷擾,直到把你們安置在圓滿 的光榮中為止。在那裡,你們將永遠安居在平安的光榮中,和安全的帳幕中,安祥地享用無盡的富裕。」

(節選自一月七日《誦讀日課》──聖雷孟司鐸書信集選讀)

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1/12: St. Victorian of Asan

(?-560)Founder of many Monasteries and Hospices in Italy

Saint Victorian of Asan (Spanish: San Vitorián de Asan, in Aragonese San Beturián) was a Spanish saint. A native of Italy, he founded monasteries and hospices there before settling briefly in France.

He became the founder and abbot of the monastery of Asan (now called San Vitorián). Asan was situated in the Aragonese. Victorian was praised in the writings of Venantius Fortunatus (Benedictines).

Eucharist quotes (1/12 St. Victorian of Asan)

St. Victorian had a great devotion to the Eucharist and spent many hours in Eucharistic Adoration outside of Mass as was reflected in the biography of St. Victorian: “In this (chapel), more frequently and fervently, (St. Victorian daily) poured forth his prayers before that indescribably Sacrament of Divine Goodness, and commended to God the health of the whole Church.”

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1/12: St. Marguerite Bourgeoys

(1620-1700)Founder of the Congregation de Notre-Dame

Congregation de Notre-Dame: http://www.cnd-m.org/en/home/

Source: http://www.marguerite-bourgeoys.com/en/chapel/marguerite-Bourgeoys.asp

Marguerite was born in Troyes in the Champagne region of France in 1620. At the age of 20, she experienced a profound change in herself during a church procession that led her to set aside the frivolous things of life. By the time she met Monsieur de Maisonneuve, her qualities of leadership and her ability to gather people together for a common cause were well recognized.

Paul Chomedey de Maisonneuve, Governor of Montreal in New France, asked his sister Louise Chomedey (a sister in the cloistered Congregation de Notre-Dame of Troyes and director of an extern group of women) for help in finding a teacher for the settlement, Louise suggested Marguerite, the leader of the group of young women who taught the children of the poor.

Marguerite Bourgeoys listened to Maisonnneuve’s request and agreed to accompany the recruitment of 1653 that would shore up the defences of Ville-Marie and its fifty-some inhabitants against the constant attacks of the Iroquois. During the treacherous sea voyage to the New World, she became nurse, confidante, support and firm friend to the men and women whose arrival tripled the population of Montreal.

Marguerite joined Maisonneuve and Jeanne Mance, the hospital administrator, as an equal in the affairs of the settlement. She understood that the women of the colony had a significant role to play in the future of Canada. Ever practical, she opened workshops where ordinary women learned skills that enabled them to earn a living. She welcomed the filles du roi whose coming provided stable families and guaranteed the survival of the country. She lived with them, prepared them for their new role and witnessed their marriage contracts.

In 1655, she rallied the inhabitants of the town to help realize her dream of building a chapel of pilgrimage within easy walking distance of the settlement. After delays and some uncertainty, in 1675 Montreal’s first stone chapel was erected.

In the stable-school opened in 1658, the children of the colony learned the basics of their faith, as well as counting, reading and writing. The older girls learned household skills to prepare for their responsibilities as wives and mothers. And traditionally, on the feast of Saint Catherine in November, they all made taffy!

Once the school had opened, Marguerite Bourgeoys returned to France to find companions who shared her vision. Together they formed the nucleus of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame, a community of uncloistered women. Ecclesiastical approval for such a radical lifestyle for women, unheard of at the time, was not granted until just two years before Marguerite’s death in 1700. Saint Marguerite Bourgeoys was canonized in 1982. A pioneer woman who worked in an outpost of the French empire, she built houses and established a farm, and opened schools for native children as well as for children of the colony. She was deterred by neither bishop nor king in the pursuit of her mission. The Church presents her to us now as a model for modern times. In a moving ceremony in May 2005, the sisters of her community and the people of Montreal brought her mortal remains in procession to Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours through the neighborhood where she had lived and worked and died, back to her chapel. A woman of courage, vision, compassion and deep spiritual strength remains with us today, part of the fabric of our lives.

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一月13日:聖依拉 略(主 教、聖師)St. Hilary of Poitiers

 聖人於第四世紀初在法國保堤埃出生。約於公元三五○年被選任為該城主教,竭力攻斥亞略異端,為君士坦丁皇帝所迫害,流徙異地。生平著 作充滿智慧與思想,是堅強信德、詮解聖經不可多得之著述。聖人安逝於三六七年。

Hilary was born around 315 in Poitiers, France. He was a member of a distinguished family, raised in paganism, and trained in the classics and philosophy. He was already married and father to a daughter, Abra, when he converted to Christianity. The sublime descriptions of God found in the Bible, which contrasted sharply with the materialism of pagan mythology, moved him to his conversion.

Around 350, over his own objections, he was elected Bishop of Poitiers and was immediately involved in the Arian controversy. Arianism taught that, before all else, God created first a Son who neither equal nor eternal with the Father, and that Jesus Christ was a supernatural creature, not quite human and not quite divine, Hilary supported St. Athanasius in the movement against Arianism and as a result was exiled to Phyrygia (Turkey) in 356. During his exile he finished the remaining nine of twelve books of his De Trinitate, the first extensive study of the doctrine of the Trinity written in Latin. During his exile, he was so persuasive in his arguments against Arianism that the Arians requested the Emperor send him back to France.

He composed allegorical interpretations of the Bible, sacred poetry and hymns. He authored numerous treatises, including De Synodis, Opus Historicum and Liber Mysteriorum and was the first Latin writer to acquaint Western Christendom with the vast theological treasures of the Greek Fathers. In 1851, Pope Pius IX declared St. Hilary a “doctor of the Universal Church.”

St. Hilary died at Poitiers around 367.

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一月14日:真福和 德理(司 鐸)Blessed Odoric of Pordenone

 真福和德理一二八六年出生於意國東部,一個極熱心的教友家庭中。長大後入方濟會,堪稱模範會士;後向會長要求赴遠方傳教。先到小亞細 亞一帶,後經印度,最後來到中國傳教,在北京首任總主教孟高維諾領導下傳教三年,皈依者甚多。總主教派遣他回國晉見教宗,回國後不幸因病逝 世,時在 一三三一年一月十四日 。

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Jan 15: St. Macarius the Great

(300-391)Egyptian Monk and Hermit

When, by decree of Emperor Constantine in 325, the persecution of Christians largely ceased, there was cause for rejoicing. Official sanction, however, brought its own temptations-laxity and worldliness-inspiring a great exodus into the desert which provided fertile soil for the ascetic exploits of those who thirsted, like the martyrs, to lose their life for Christ. Among the most renowned of these early desert-dwellers was St. Macarius the Great. So lofty was his spiritual attainment that in recording his Life one of his biographers feared it would be regarded as a fabrication.

St. Macarius was born in Egypt in 300, of Christian parents. Even as a child he had a sensitive conscience: once he ate a fig which a playmate had stolen and he mourned this sin the rest of his life. Withdrawing to the desert at the age of thirty, he sought out and was discipled by St. Anthony the Great until he reached sufficient maturity for solitary life, whereupon his abba sent him to the remote desert of Scetis. There Macarius' labors incited the fury of the demons, who attacked him physically and mentally in a variety of guises-as monsters, brigands, angels. The Saint was not deceived. Like the Prophet King, he called upon the name of the Lord and warded them off. The demons themselves admitted defeat. Once, when gathering palm branches in the desert, he encountered a demon who said to him: “I suffer great sorrow in being unable to conquer you. Everything that you do I do also: you fast-I eat nothing at all; you keep vigil-I never sleep. In one thing only do you surpass me-in humility.”

Wrapping his mind in God and sternly disciplining his body with vigils and fasting, Macarius rapidly ascended the ladder of perfection, garnering in the process a wealth of spiritual gifts: of healing, discernment, interpretation of Scriptures, prophecy, exorcism of demons, even the power to raise the dead.

There soon gathered around him a group of monks, and Macarius was ordained to the priesthood.

The community was besieged by people seeking to be cured of various afflictions. The Saint purposely delayed applying his power of healing in order that these people would benefit the more by being detained for a few days in the monastery. To find relief from his numerous visitors he dug a subterranean passageway to a cave where he would retire for solitude.

His gift of wonder-working was truly extraordinary. When one of his disciples was in town selling baskets, the Saint saw with his spiritual eyes that the monk was in danger of succumbing to the attraction of a harlot, and had him instantly transported back to his cell. Once a certain heretic by the name of Hierax came to the desert, sowing confusion by mocking the Christian faith in the resurrection of the dead. To prove the power of God, St. Macarius took the heretic to the cemetery and called forth a dead monk from his grave.

Saint Macarius taught a wonderful simplicity. “Christians,” he said, “should judge no one, neither an open harlot, nor sinners, nor dissolute people, but should look upon all with simplicity of soul and a pure eye. Purity of heart, indeed, consists in seeing sinful and weak men and having compassion for them and being merciful.” On the subject of prayer he counseled, “It is enough if you will often repeat from your whole heart, ‘Lord, as it pleases Thee and as Thou knowest, have mercy on me.’ And if temptation comes upon you: 'Lord, help me!' The Lord knows what is profitable for us and has mercy on us.” Saint Macarius reposed at the age of ninety.

Eucharist quotes (1/15 St. Macarius the Great)

“(Jesus) said: ‘This is my Body’; therefore the Eucharist is not the figure of his Body and Blood, as some have said, talking nonsense in their stupid minds, but it is in very truth the Blood and Body of Christ.”

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一月15日:聖劉方 濟(司 鐸、殉道)St. Francis de Capillas

來華傳教的西方教士中第一個為主殉道者是聖劉方濟,殉道地:福建福安。(1607-1648)

 聖劉方濟原名Francisco de Capillas O.P.,方濟各嘉彼來1607年生於西班牙西北部的巴倫西亞,八月十五日受洗,取名方濟。由於他生長在聖善的家庭中,受著公教德馨的陶冶, 所以從小就愛 慕德行,熱心事主。童年時期與人遊玩,不知何故,常口中喊叫:『福安!福安!』同伴和父母都聽慣了,只當兒歌。後來他在中國傳教,在福安為主 致命的消息一 傳到西班牙故鄉,眾人都驚訝不已,原來天主在他的童年,已把他為主殉道地方的名字,放在他口裡任他呼喚。

 嘉彼來大學畢業後,棄俗修道。1623年入道明會初學,其時他十六歲,謹小慎微,恪守會規。初學後依照嚴格的會規要求,開始研讀一切 高深的聖學,直到1631年領受了大品。其時,傳教士在遠東本來缺乏,再加上日本教難大作,成千累萬的司鐸和教友,前仆後繼地致命于刑場,因 此更需要大批 的傳教士來補充。嘉彼來修士為主致命之情熱切,這位年輕人決心成聖的志向,促使他在仍是六品時就自願前往菲律賓。隨同道明會的三十位修士,離 開故鄉向遠東 出發,那是163l年6月l9日,經過將近一年的海程旅行,備受艱辛,于1632年6月底抵達馬尼拉。就在馬尼拉晉升鐸品,那是同年的6月月 5日。

 嘉彼來神父從1632—1641年的九年的工夫,在菲島的北部傳教,在那裡奔波勞碌,向當地人民宣傳福音。在這段時間裡,他做過助理 本堂,也當過本堂主任司鐸,但他無論居何地位,總是始終如一,用全副精神,來盡他司鐸的職務。施行聖事,講解教理,常是欣勤殷切,心力傾注; 而個人起居, 嚴肅聖善,同在會院無異。嘉彼來總是跪著祈禱,在屋內工作也是跪著,因為時間過久,有時兩膝的外皮破裂,但他竟視若罔覺,不以為苦,他的苦修 功夫,乃因他 效法會祖聖道明的祈禱、苦修精神,也即『與主秘談,與人論道』,嘉彼來體會到唯有具備深刻的與主契合神修體驗,才能發揮道明會士弘道明德,普 渡眾生的淑世 情懷。

 嘉彼來神父在菲期間,早已渴望來華傳教,這位年輕神父在菲律賓北部的嘉牙茵省渡過了十年艱苦的福傳洗練,炎熱、蚊虫和異端使這位外國 人痛苦異常,然而『天之將大任於斯人也,必先苦其心志,勞其筋骨,餓其體膚,空乏其身,所以動心忍性,增益其所不能。』於是歷盡千槌百鍊的 他,雄心萬丈地 要求長上派他去一個傳教最困難的地區,也許他和當時許多年輕的會士一樣,極欲被派到當時迫害最厲害的日本。後來他被派到中國的福建省。

 嘉彼來獲准於1641年7月23日到達台灣,并遇著同會的徐神父。在他到達台灣的第二年,得了內渡的機會,踏進了中國大陸福建省,那 是1642年4月。

的典型。

 在閩東的仇教運動,福安尤為突出,始于1631年,福安城內陡起仇教暴動,多人竄入堂內,推毀聖堂,搜捕施自安會長及徐神父,幸虧他 們早已聞風逃走。1646年,福安聖堂兩次被劫。1647年,仇教分子趁官府仇恨白蓮教之危, 捏造種種莫須有罪名,誣告教士,以為天主教更屬于禁止之列。所以,福安知縣就在禁止白蓮教的詔令下,加批數語: "查得天主洋教,教義乖張,教規敗壞,有礙風化,嗣後嚴禁傳播,傳教士著即驅逐"。因此,在閩東地區掀起了一場教難。

 劉方濟神父與施自安會長躲藏到頂頭,但因要關照教友的終傅聖事,故劉神父去福安城關, 為教友行病人傅油聖事。但在返回途中,被官兵發現,束手就擒。營官查明真相後,轉交縣官發落,知縣本來偏聽謗言,懷恨教士。再加上仇教分子趁 機賄賂,欲致 劉神父于死地。故此三番兩次地對神父施加重刑。劉神父倚靠天主聖寵的助佑,不屈不撓。劉方濟在法庭上辨釋他們對教士的誤會,及排解天主教的要 理。他以極大 的勇氣,忍受這些人對他的殘忍待遇。

 法官們看見他平靜如常,於是對他的信仰也就有點好奇起來。他們雖以財富,權力和自由引誘他放棄信仰,但是他卻寧死不屈。他們對他施以 各種不同的刑罰,但是他卻利用時間來感化獄卒和同房的犯人。甚至官員也到獄中來勸他放棄信仰。官員們對他這種樂意為主受苦的說法憤怒異常,命 令手下加重用 刑,但這樣卻使他更為高興。最後他們使用各種毒辣的手段,決意致死劉神父;在嚴刑拷打之後,又以飢餓和寒凍來折磨他。但是,劉神父為主忍難, 無怨無尤,而 且神樂非常,不惜以身殉道,並用言語勸化了許多同囚的犯人。1648年(順治五年) l月16日黃昏在福安湖山被斬首處決。官方的判決書是這樣寫的:『在經過長時間痛苦後,他被斬首,這樣可以和他那位在同樣情形下被處死的主見 面。』

 聖劉方濟在生時,天主就屢次賞過他格外的神恩,如預知未來,洞燭人靈狀態等。致命升天後,天主聖寵的雨露,因著他的轉求,不斷的降到 世人身上。一九四三年,在西班牙亞味拉城—聖女德肋撒的家鄉,曾舉行極盛大的三日慶典,敬禮聖劉神父,這時聖人的首級,也特地從華拉達里城迎 了過來,受人 瞻仰。參與盛典的信友,肩磨踵接,道明會會士的聖堂內,萬頭鑽動。事後許多信友,互相訴說這三日內,自己獲得的特殊恩寵,都異口同聲的歸功于 聖劉方濟神父 在天的轉求。天主為光榮他的忠僕,曾屢次顯神跡,叫人在急難時,投奔祈求他。現在我們只把進行宣聖品時,經過考察證明的神跡,寫在下面:

 第一是他的遺體不朽不毀:劉方濟殉道後,遺體丟在坑內,兩月之久,沒有收歛。後來開坑收斂時,除了腹部開始有點腐爛外,其餘各部器官 和肌肉,都絲毫沒有腐朽,至於同坑的其他屍首,都不外兩種現象;或被野獸吞食,或已完全腐化,只留下殘骸而已。聖的肉身固然完好如初,就是和 它接觸的屍 體,也都保存無損。據當時開坑收歛的人說,聖死後不久,就有一個青年教友,也被處死,屍首同樣的丟在這坑內。,丟下時,他的一隻手臂,不知怎 樣竟橫置在聖 的胸部。兩個月後,他的屍首都已全部朽壞,只有這隻手臂,依然保存如昔。

 聖人的遺體收斂以後,原是寄存在外教人家裏。可是過不多久,這家就發生火災,他的房子以及屋內的器皿什物,都焚化一空;只有聖的棺 柩,雖在熱火之中;仍絲毫無損,這不能說不是奇事。

 第二是賜人超性神恩:在菲律濱,有位同會的會士瑪定黎亞,多年來,肉情猛烈,無法遏止。雖用盡各種辦法,邪情仍有增無減。這樣使他日 夜煩惱,坐臥不安。當聖致命的消息,傳到馬尼拉時,他就怦然心動,覺得最後辦法,只有把自己託給聖。於是熱心的求他拯救自己,出此肉情難關。 求後不久,就 覺得多年退不去的誘惑,竟已煙消霧散,無影無蹤。

 第三是治愈病痛:那時馬尼拉總主教區的代牧若望斐迪南博士,多年患著膀胱炎,小便阻塞,疼痛異常,全馬尼拉的名醫都診治過,結果徒 然。有一天,兩位道明會的神父,為著進行聖列品事,向他陳述聖的生平事跡;以及致命的前後經過。他一聽傾心,等到倆神父出門後,他就跪倒在 地,至誠至懇的 將自己托給聖,求他醫治自己的病苦。說也奇怪,晚上睡覺時,他在夢中,覺著自己的疾病,已經霍然脫體;醒來以後,果然小便暢通,疼痛全消,他 的多年宿疾, 竟是不藥而愈。

 劉方濟神父殉道後,福安地區信友都奉他為主保。劉方濟死後被譽為中國的首位殉道者,是在中國傳教的西方教士中第一位為主而殉道的烈 士,教廷在調查過劉方濟的一生事跡、言行、聖德和靈跡後,由教宗比約十世在一九零九年封他為真福,教宗若望保祿二世於主曆2000年10月1 日冊封劉方濟為聖人。

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一月17日:聖安當 (院長) (紀念)St. Anthony the Abbot (251-356)

曠野隱修的始祖

 聖安當的一生,總讓人想起聖方濟亞西西。

 251年時,聖人誕生於埃及北部的苛瑪城(Coma),他的雙親是非常富有的基督徒,安當則是他們的獨子。為避免受到異教徒的影響, 聖人的雙親只好在自己家中教育安當。20歲生日之前,他的父母雙雙過世,聖人於是繼承了父母的大筆資產,且擔負起照顧妹妹的責任。

 安當的父母過世後約莫六個月,在偶然的機會下,他聽到聖堂內正宣讀著福音,內容是基督對富貴少年所說的話:「你若願意是成全的,去! 變賣你所有的,施捨給窮人,你必有寶藏在天上;然後來跟隨我」(瑪十九21)。當下,聖人覺得此話正是基督對他所說的,於是便立即將自己絕大 部分的土地都 送給了鄰人,並將妹妹託付給聖善的貞女們照管,自己則到曠野中作一位隱士去了。聖人在自家附近退隱達十五年之久,在那裡,他力行祈禱與苦行, 並向住在附近 的隱士們學習如何善度神修的生活。聖人並非一朝即成的,安當也是;他對天主的忠信常受到嚴厲的試煉。撰寫聖人生平的聖亞大納削(St. Athanasius)曾提及,聖安當常遭受魔鬼的可怕誘惑,這些魔鬼常以野獸的樣式出現,無情地把聖人鞭打得半死。但是,藉著祈禱,安當學 會了如何不去 注意這些魔鬼,且獲得了很好的效果。

 當聖人35歲時,他決意離開自己的家鄉去過一個完全獨修的生活。於是,他渡過尼羅河,走到東岸的古老曠野中,在一座名叫庇斯比爾 (Mt. Pispir)的山上定居了下來。他的聖德很快地就吸引了許多人來求教於他,以致他渴望的獨修生活並未持續很久。這些來尋求聖人指導的人們就 散居在庇斯比 爾山附近,後來都成了聖人的門徒,他們就住在天然形成的洞穴或小屋內獨修,聖人則固定地予以會晤並指導,這樣維持了五至六年。隨後,聖人又退 隱到尼羅河與 紅海間的克津山(Mt. Colzim)曠野,在那裡度過了他最後的45年半獨修生活。儘管,聖人寧願過著完全獨修的生活,但他對此世的「責任」,卻使得他時常往來於 自己的小室與 庇斯比爾山之間,甚至在311年時,他還一年二度前往亞歷山大。教會從未有過反社會性的聖人,聖安當也是,面對那些時常前來求助於他的人們, 聖人時常給予 他們靈性上的指引與教導。

 羅馬皇帝Maximinus興起教難期間,聖人鼓勵信友為堅持信仰而殉道;約355年時,他與聖亞大納削致力於對抗當時盛行的亞略邪 說;次年,聖人便過世了。由於聖人擔心自己死後遺骸會成為後人敬禮的對象,因此嚴厲地囑咐其弟子不可洩漏其安葬之地的所在。

 在東方教會裡,聖安當獨修生活的操練與教導,仍有許多人遵守;西方教會中,則以嘉都先會(the Order of Cathusians)為代表。聖安當不僅可以說是隱修的始祖,更可說是各種修道生活的始祖。

 在聖像中,安當常被描繪成一位手持著T型或十架型手杖的隱士,另一手則拿著一本書,然後身後會緊隨著一隻豬或其他牲畜。十架與豬象徵 著聖人他一生與邪魔的爭戰 -「十架」是他持續克勝邪魔的工具,而「豬」則是邪魔自身的象徵。「書」讓人憶起他曾為一本名為「本性之書-the Book of Nature」寫過注釋。聖人辭世時享有105歲的高壽。

 「一日,安當進入聖堂時,正有人在誦讀福音,他聽見吾主向富家少年說:『你若願意成為完善的人,就要去變賣你所有的,施捨給窮人,你 必有寶藏在天上;然後來跟隨我。』

 安當想到這段福音好像是為他而誦讀的,便立刻走出聖堂,把祖產全部贈送給村中的人,以免這些產業連累了他和他的妹妹。他也變賣了一切 其他財產,把所得的大量現金賙濟窮人,只為他妹妹留下一小部份。

 又有一次,他進入聖堂,聽見主在福音中說:『你們不要為明天而憂慮。』於是他再無法安心留在聖堂內,走出聖堂,把所存留的那一小部份 現金也完全施捨給更貧窮之人了。他把妹妹託付給巴德諾女修院照管後,便在自己的住宅附近,專務苦修,度著克己苦身的生活。

 安當靠手工維生,因為他曾聽說過:『誰若不肯工作,就不該吃飯。』他所賺來的錢,一部分用來買麵包餬口,其餘的都賙濟窮人了。

 他不斷祈禱,因為他曾學習應獨自祈禱,並應不斷祈禱。他專心聽唸福音,一字一句都不遺漏地牢記一切;以後,他的記憶就替代了書本。」

Anthony was born in the year 251 in Egypt. Our Lord spoke to him saying: “If thou wilt be perfect, go, sell, what thou hast, and give to the poor.

He gave away all he had tried and stated learning how to live a holy life. He lived in the desert, where he lived the life of a hermit for many years. He devoted himself to prayer and penance. For more than twenty years Anthony was tempted by the devil, but he overcame temptation by prayer and sacrifice. Many people flocked to him for advice. He consented to guide them in holiness. He started the first monastery, so people call him the father of monastic life and the patriarch of monks.

His miracles drew so many people so he left and went into the desert again, where he lived by hard work and prayer.

In 305, Anthony founded a religious community of hermits who lived in separate cells. He died in 356 at the age of one hundred and five.

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1/17: Bl. Matthew of Girgenti (Matthieu d’Argrigente) 

(?-1451)Bishop and Confessor; Franciscan

Blessed Matthew of Girgenti, born at Girgenti on the island of Sicily, entered the Franciscan Order when he was still quite young. When he had completed his studies and had been ordained a priest, the desire to enter upon a more perfect observance of the Franciscan rule led him to transfer to the Observant reform which was being promoted by St Bernardine of Siena.

St Bernardine soon perceived the outstanding qualities of the young religious and took him with him as a companion on the missions that he was then giving throughout Italy. By his ardent zeal Matthew was instrumental in the conversion of numerous sinners, and in rekindling the flame of piety where it had long since grown cold. In imitation of his master Bernardine, he did all in his power to promote devotion to the holy name of Jesus.

Believing that religious perfection is particularly meritorious before God, Matthew strove earnestly to promulgate the perfect observance of the rule of St Francis. He went to Spain, where he was successful in introducing the observance in many convents. Then he went to his own country of Sicily, where, with the approval of the Holy See, he established several convents and labored with much success among the people. In honor of the name of Jesus and that of His Blessed Mother, Matthew gave every convent he founded the title of St Mary of Jesus.

About this time the bishop of Girgenti died, and clergy and laity joined in the request to have Matthew as their chief pastor. He resisted at first, but Pope Eugene IV commanded him to accept the appointment. Blessed Matthew of Girgenti then discharged his office so well that his diocese was soon in a flourishing condition. He took vigorous action against prevalent vices and disorders. As a result powerful enemies denounced him to the pope. The gold was to be tried in the fire.

Blessed Matthew of Girgenti was called to Rome by Pope Eugene IV, to answer the charges brought against him. But the inquiry resulted in such a clear justification of the bishop that the pope declared him innocent and sent him back with honor to his diocese. However, not long after, Matthew, worn out by his labors, voluntarily resigned his office in order to return to a Franciscan convent and prepare himself for death.

For several years Matthew then suffered from severe maladies and, thus purified, he entered the eternal bliss of heaven. He died in the convent at Palermo in 1451. His body was taken to the Church on an open stretcher. When the procession arrived before the high altar, to the amazement and terror of all present, the deceased prelate raised himself on the litter, adored the Blessed Sacrament with folded hands, and then lay back again.

Numerous miracles occurred at his grave, and the people honored him as a saint from the time of his demise. Pope Clement XIII confirmed the veneration paid to him, and later Pope Pius VII renewed this confirmation.

*from: The Franciscan Book of Saints, ed. by Marion Habig, ofm

Eucharist quotes (1/17 St. Matthew of Girgenti)

When Blessed Matthew of Girgenti's body was in the church for his funeral Mass, his hands joined in adoration toward the Eucharist.

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1/19: St. Thomas of Cori

(1655 to 1729) Franciscan Priest known as the Apostle of Sublacense Italy

Thomas of Cori (1655-1729), priest, O.F.M. Born in Cori (Latina) on June 4, 1655, Thomas knew a childhood marked by the premature loss first of his mother and then of his father, thus being left alone at the age of 14 to look after his younger sister. Shepherding sheep, he learned wisdom from the simplest things. Once his sister was married, the youth was free to follow the inspiration that for some years he had kept in the silence of his heart: to belong completely to God in the Religious Life of a Franciscan. He had been able to get to know the Friars Minor in his own village at St. Francis convent. Once his two sisters were settled in good marriages and he was rendered free of all other preoccupations, he was received into the Order and sent to Orvieto (PG) to fulfill his novitiate year. After professing his vows according to the Rule of St. Francis and completing his theological studies, he was ordained to the priesthood in 1683. He was immediately nominated vice master of novices at Holy Trinity convent in Orvieto, since his superior recognized at once his gifts.

After a short time, Fr. Thomas heard of the hermitages that were beginning to bloom in the Order and the intention of the superiors of the Roman Province to inaugurate one at the convent at Civitella (today Bellegra). His request was accepted, and the young friar thus knocked at the door of the poor convent in 1684, saying, “I am Fr. Thomas of Cori, and I come here to become holy!” In speech perhaps distant from ours, he expressed his anxiousness to live the Gospel radically, after the spirit of Saint Francis.

From then, Fr. Thomas lived at Bellegra until death, with the exception of six years in which he was Guardian at the convent of Palombara, where he initiated the Hermitage modeled after the one at Bellegra. He wrote the Rule first for one and then for the other, observing it scrupulously aid consolidating by word and example the new institution of the two Hermitages.

St. Thomas did not close himself up in the Hermitage, forgetting the good of his brothers and sisters, and the heart of the Franciscan vocation, which is apostolic. He was called with good reason the Apostle of Sublacense (the Subiaco region), having crossed the territory and its villages with the indefatigable proclamation of the Gospel, in the administration of the sacraments and the flowering of miracles at his passage, a sign of the presence and nearness of the Kingdom. His preaching was clear and simple, convincing and strong. He did not climb the most illustrious pulpits of his time; his personality was able to give its best in an ambit restricted to our territory, living his Franciscan vocation in littleness and in the concrete choice of the poorest.

Exquisite charity. St. Thomas of Cori was to his brothers a very gentle father. In face of the resistance of some brothers before his will to reform and his radicality in living the Franciscan ideal, the Saint knew how to respond with patience and humility, even finding himself alone to mind the convent. He had understood well that every true reform initiates itself. The considerable correspondence that is here annexed demonstrates St. Thomas' attention to the smallest expectations and needs of his Friars, and of numerous friends, penitents and Friars who turned to him for his counsel. In the convent, he demonstrated his spirit of charity in his availability for every necessity, even the most humble.

Rich in merits, he fell asleep in the Lord on January 11, 1729. St. Thomas of Cori shines among us and in Rome, of which he is the co-patron, above all in his thirst for a Christian and Franciscan ideal that is pure and lived in its essentials. A provocation for all of us not to take lightly the Gospel and its all-encompassing exigencies.

Eucharist quotes (1/19 St.Thomas of Cori)

Mass and Eucharistic Adoration was extremely important to St. Thomas of Cori, at the very core of his spiritual life, from which he would go forth to preach the Gospel, administer the sacraments and work miracles in Italy.

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一月20日:聖法俾 盎(教 宗、殉道)St. Fabian

 聖人於公元二三六年被選任羅馬主教,積極發展教會生活,為更有效地服務窮人而把羅馬分作七個執事區。教宗於二五○年在羅馬德西烏斯皇 教難初期壯烈殉道,葬於加利斯都墓。

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一月20日:聖巴斯 弟盎(殉 道)St. Sebastian

 聖人原為羅馬禁衛軍隊長,信德甚為堅強。戴克里先教難初期於羅馬殉道,時在二八八年一月二十日;葬於一地窟內。

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一月廿一日:聖依搦 斯(貞 女,殉道)(紀念) St. Agnes

主保:瑪麗亞的子女、貞潔、園丁、小女孩、訂婚男女、遭玷污者與貞女

 聖女的名字,在希臘文中有「純潔」之意;在拉丁文中則讓人想起「羔羊-Agnus」。

 對於這位聖女,我們除了知道她在第三世紀末,以約12、13歲的稚齡殉道致命之外,其他幾乎一無所知,僅有一些傳說流傳下來。傳說 中,聖女致命的方式有數種說詞:有斬首、焚燒或是絞刑等說法,莫衷一是。

 根據傳說,聖女是羅馬貴族的後裔,在13歲時因堅持信仰而殉道致命。依搦斯年幼之時,曾向天主誓許永保童貞,她愛主至深,痛惡罪惡甚 於死亡!由於聖女容貌甚美,因此許多年輕人皆想娶依搦斯為妻,但聖女的回覆總是:「耶穌基督是我唯一的夫君。」

 一位羅馬官長的的兒子名叫Procop,因聖女的拒絕而惱羞成怒,他曾試圖以豐厚的禮物與許諾為條件,欲說服聖女成為他的妻子。但是,這 位美麗的 女孩還是說:「我已向萬有之主許下承諾。祂的光輝勝過太陽與星辰,且絕不離棄我。」Procop在盛怒下控告她是一位基督徒,並且將聖女帶到 官長他父親那 裡去。這位官長慫恿聖女說,若她願意背棄上主,將可獲得許多珍貴的禮物。但是,聖女還是予以回絕。之後,這位羅馬官長欲以綑綁脅迫的方式,試 圖改變聖女的 心意,但她可愛的臉龐卻流溢著喜樂,連外教民眾都不忍見此美麗的女孩受死而偷偷哭泣著。然而,聖女的表情卻有如待嫁般地喜樂。她並未留意那些 求她留住自己 性命者的呼求,只回答說:「若取悅你們,我就冒犯了我的淨配;祂選我在先,所以應先擁有我。祂以恩寵與美德來妝點我的靈魂,因此我只屬於這位 天使們所服事 的天主。」說完,聖女即低頭等候致命的大刀了。

 據載,聖女被囚禁的期間,曾有一位男子帶著情慾的眼目注視著聖女,結果瞬間雙目失了明,賴聖女代求,才又使該名男子恢復視力。

 又有一種傳說這樣描述:由於羅馬法律不許處決貞女,所以在執刑前,羅馬官長命人先將聖女予以玷污。然而,聖女貞潔的榮冠卻奇跡地被保 留了下來。之後,當士兵將聖女拖至外頭,準備施以火刑時,乾柴卻無法點燃。無奈之下,官長只好命兵士拔出劍來,砍擊聖女的頭部,依搦斯遂光榮 致命了。聖女 致命後被葬在羅馬附近的地下墓穴之中。君士坦丁大帝的女兒為她蓋了一座大殿,以尊崇這位聖女。

 按歐洲部份地區的習俗,據聞只要在聖女慶日的前夕舉行特定的儀式,少女們就能看見自己未來夫婿的相貌。這種迷信的行為,在若望基德 (John Keat)的詩中「The Eve of Saint Agnes」曾被提及。

 聖女是貞潔、園丁、小女孩、訂婚男女、遭玷污者與貞女的主保。聖女的主要慶日是在1月21日,但在羅馬教會的禮儀裡,也常在1月28 日紀念這位聖女。

 在聖像中,聖女常被描繪成手持棕櫚樹枝,腳旁則伴有一隻羔羊,或懷中抱著羔羊的一位少女。

1/21: St. Agnes

St. Agnes was a Roman girl who was only thirteen years old when she suffered martyrdom for her Faith. Agnes had made a promise, a promise to God never to stain her purity. Her love for the Lord was very great and she hated sin even more than death! Since she was very beautiful, many young men wished to marry Agnes, but she would always say, "Jesus Christ is my only Spouse."

Procop, the Governor's son, became very angry when she refused him. He had tried to win her for his wife with rich gifts and promises, but the beautiful young girl kept saying, "I am already promised to the Lord of the Universe. He is more splendid than the sun and the stars, and He has said He will never leave me!" In great anger, Procop accused her of being a Christian and brought her to his father, the Governor. The Governor promised Agnes wonderful gifts if she would only deny God, but Agnes refused. He tried to change her mind by putting her in chains, but her lovely face shone with joy. Next he sent her to a place of sin, but an Angel protected her. At last, she was condemned to death. Even the pagans cried to see such a young and beautiful girl going to death. Yet, Agnes was as happy as a bride on her wedding day. She did not pay attention to those who begged her to save herself. "I would offend my Spouse," she said, "if I were to try to please you. He chose me first and He shall have me!" Then she prayed and bowed her head for the death-stroke of the sword.

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一月22日:聖味增 爵(執 事、殉道)St. Vincent

 聖人是西班牙撒拉高撒教會的一位執事,戴克里先迫害教會時,他在西班牙瓦倫西亞城,飽受苦刑而為主殉道。

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一月23日:聖白小 滿(殉 道)

 聖白小滿,貴州省水城縣人,一八二一年生, 一八五三年正月二十五日殉道。聖人受難時,仍囑妻子謹守十誡,把聖教會道理教給女兒。一九○○年由教宗良十三世宣佈他為真福。教宗若望保祿二 世於 二○○○年十月一日 宣佈他為聖人。

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一月23日:St. Marianne Cope

On January 23, 1838, a daughter was born to Peter and Barbara Cope of Hessen-Darmstadt, Germany. The girl was named after her mother. Two years later the Cope family emigrated to the United States and settled in Utica, New York. Young Barbara worked in a factory until August 1862, when she went to the Sisters of the Third Order of Saint Francis in Syracuse, New York. After profession in November of the next year, she began teaching at Assumption parish school.

Marianne held the post of superior in several places and was twice the novice mistress of her congregation. A natural leader, three different times she was superior of St. Joseph’s Hospital in Syracuse, where she learned much that would be useful during her years in Hawaii.

Elected provincial in 1877, Mother Marianne was unanimously re-elected in 1881. Two years later the Hawaiian government was searching for someone to run the Kakaako Receiving Station for people suspected of having leprosy. More than 50 religious communities in the United States and Canada were asked. When the request was put to the Syracuse sisters, 35 of them volunteered immediately. On October 22, 1883, Mother Marianne and six other sisters left for Hawaii where they took charge of the Kakaako Receiving Station outside Honolulu; on the island of Maui they also opened a hospital and a school for girls.

In 1888, Mother Marianne and two sisters went to Molokai to open a home for “unprotected women and girls” there. The Hawaiian government was quite hesitant to send women for this difficult assignment; they need not have worried about Mother Marianne! On Molokai she took charge of the home that St. Damien de Veuster [May 10, d. 1889] had established for men and boys. Mother Marianne changed life on Molokai by introducing cleanliness, pride and fun to the colony. Bright scarves and pretty dresses for the women were part of her approach.

Awarded the Royal Order of Kapiolani by the Hawaiian government and celebrated in a poem by Robert Louis Stevenson, Mother Marianne continued her work faithfully. Her sisters have attracted vocations among the Hawaiian people and still work on Molokai.

Mother Marianne died on August 9, 1918 and was beatified in 2005. A second miracle was officially confirmed in December 2011; Mother Marianne's canonization is on October 21 2012.

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1/23: St. Ildephonsus of Toledo

(607-667) Archbishop of Toledo

Doctor of the Virginity of Mary, Archbishop of Toledo, and recipient of a blessed priestly vestment from Our Blessed Mother, in reward for his zeal and love for her. Saint Ildephonsus is highly venerated in Spain, and considered a precursor in establishing the later official Vatican doctrine of the perpetual virginity of Our Blessed Mother. He was the first to establish the feast of the Expectation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Ildephonsus was born to a noble and distinguished family in Toledo, Spain. He was the nephew of Saint Eugenius, who proceeded him as Bishop of Toledo, and a pupil of Saint Isidore of Seville. While very young, he entered the Benedictine monastery at Agalia, much against the wishes of his father. He embraced the monastic life, being ordained a deacon at the age of 23, and later becoming Abbot of the monastery. Eventually, following his attendance at the Councils of Toledo in 653 and 655, King Reccesyinth selected him to succeed Saint Eugenius as Archbishop of Toledo. It was in this capacity that he served the city and it’s inhabitants for nine years, performing his duties with diligence and sanctity until his death.

Saint Ildephonsus is a favorite saint of medieval artists, hymnographers, and poets, largely due to two famed events which occurred during his life. In one occasion, Saint Ildephonsus was praying before the relics of Saint Leocadia. It is said that during his prayers, the martyred saint rose from her grave, thanking him for the devotion he showed towards the Blessed Virgin Mary.

On a separate occasion, Our Blessed Mother herself appeared to Saint Ildephonsus, presenting him with a priestly vestment in thanks for his devotion to her. On the feast of the Mother of God, Ildephonsus and the clergy found the church engulfed in a radiant light upon arriving to celebrate Matins. All but Ildephonsus and two deacons fled, deeply afraid. When the three entered the church, there, seated on the Archbishop’s throne, was Our Blessed Mother surrounded by choirs of angels and holy virgins. Our Blessed Mother spoke to Ildephonsus, saying: “Thou art my chaplain and faithful notary. Receive from me this chasuble, which my Son sends you from His treasury.” Having said this, the Immaculate Virgin clothed Ildephonsus in the chasuble, and instructed him to wear it for the Holy Sacrifice on her festivals.

Saint Ildephonsus was also a prolific writer, and his literary works are better known than the details of his life. While only four of his works have survived, they include his treatise on the perpetual virginity of the Blessed Virgin, and an important document of the history of the Spanish Church during the first two-thirds of the seventh century, entitled Concerning Famous Men.

Saint Ildephonsus wrote several prayers in honor of Our Blessed Mother.

Eucharist quotes (1/23 St. Ildephonsus of Toledo)

“O Jesus, here present in the Holy Eucharist, Thy Heart is all aglow with love for me! Thou dost call me, Thou dost urge me to come to Thee.”

Marian prayer of St. Ildephonsus

Virgin Mary, hear my prayer: through the Holy Spirit you became the Mother of Jesus; from the Holy Spirit may I too have Jesus.

Through the Holy Spirit your flesh conceived Jesus; through the same Spirit may my soul receive Jesus.

Through the Holy Spirit you were able to know Jesus, to possess Jesus, and to bring him into the world. Through the Holy Spirit may I too come to know your Jesus.

Imbued with the Spirit, Mary, you could say: “I am the handmaid of the Lord, be it done unto me according to your word;” in the Holy Spirit, lowly as I am, let me proclaim the great truths about Jesus.

In the Spirit you now adore Jesus as Lord and look on Him as Son; in the same spirit, Mary, let me love your Jesus.

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一月24日:聖方濟 各沙雷氏 (主教、聖師)(紀念) St. Francis de Sales

(1567-1622) 新聞工作者的主保。

 聖方濟各沙雷氏生於十六世紀 (1567-1622),是日內瓦的主教,慶日為一月二十四日,是新聞工作者的主保。

 方濟各沙雷氏出生法國撒瓦省於富裕家庭,長大後在著名的大學進修,並取得法律博士學位。

 十八歲時,他突陷於失望的誘惑,恐怕自己喪失恩寵,死後會墮入永火地獄,但他說:「主啊!我死後縱使無法享見你的聖容,無法愛你;至 少賜我今生能時時刻刻愛你。」接著他跪在聖母像前祈禱,失望的誘惑隨之消失。

 一五九三年,聖方濟各沙雷氏受祝聖為神父,他是一位出色的講道者及靈修導師。他認為「成聖」絕不是神職人員和修道人的專利,而是所有 基督徒皆可以做到的。

 當時,教區內的基督教勢力極大,方濟各沙雷氏甘願接受主教的派遣,勸化六萬個反對教會的基督徒。他編撰及派發了很多小冊子,並且到處 講道,這份艱辛的工作使他多次處於死亡的邊緣。經過他五年的努力,信友的信仰得以堅強,皈依人數超越四萬。

 一六零二年,方濟各沙雷氏獲祝聖日內瓦主教,對所屬的聖職人員及信眾,不但言教身教,樹立真正善牧的模範,並且著書立說,促進信眾的 信德生活。其後,協助創立聖母往見修會。一六二二年十二月二十八日安逝於法國里昂,但於1月24日安葬安內西。

 查聖人的性情本是暴躁激烈的,且心神也過度活潑急劇,但得天主助佑,經多年的修養和克制,竟變成一位慈祥和氣,宅心仁厚而可親的長 者。

 聖方濟沙雷氏教我們成聖,他說:「無論我們是處於甚麼境況或從事甚麼工作,我們皆能成聖。」,「生命的滿全就是愛的滿全,愛是生命的 靈魂。」

 有關個人與天主愛的計劃合作,聖人說:「(天主)並不願意每一個人遵守所有的勸諭,但只當遵守因愛德的要求,符合不同個人、時間、機 會、能力的那些勸諭。因為愛德是一切德行、誡命、勸諭的皇后。總括一句,愛德給予一切法律,及基督徒行為各自的位置、秩序、時間和價值。」 (《論天主的 愛》8,6)

Eucharist quotes (1/24 St. Francis de Sales)

“We must visit Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament a hundred thousand times a day.”

“As mountain hares become white in winter because they neither see nor eat anything but snow, so by adoring and feeding on beauty, purity and goodness itself in the Eucharist you will become altogether beautiful, pure, and good.”

“Nowhere do we find our Savior more tender or more loving than here (in adoration) where He, so to speak, annihilates Himself and reduces Himself to food in order to penetrate our souls and to unite Himself to the hearts of His friends.”

“By adoring and partaking of His beauty, His Goodness and His purity in this Divine Sacrament, you will become all beautiful, good and pure.”

"When the bee has gathered the dew of heaven and the earth's sweetest nectar from the flowers, it turns it into honey, then hastens to its hive. In the same way, the priest, having taken from the altar the Son of God (who is as the dew from heaven, and true son of Mary, flower of our humanity), gives him to you as delicious food."

"When you have received Him, stir up your heart to do Him homage; speak to Him about your spiritual life, gazing upon Him in your soul where He is present for your happiness; welcome Him as warmly as possible, and behave outwardly in such a way that your actions may give proof to all of His Presence."

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一月25日:聖保祿 歸化(宗 徒)(慶日)Conversion of St. Paul

??要捆綁他們,解送到大司祭前嗎﹖」掃祿卻更強而有力了,使僑居在大馬士革的猶太人驚惶失措,因為他指證耶穌就是默西亞。過了一些時 日,猶太人就共同商議要傷害他。

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一月26日:聖弟茂 德與聖弟 鐸(主教)(紀念) Ss. Timothy and Titus

 兩位聖人均為保祿之門生,分別治理厄弗所與克來特的教會。保祿所寫給他們的書信,稱為「牧函」,包括為牧者及為信友最完美的訓誨。

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一月26日:真福雷 永明 (神父) Bl. Gabriele M. Allegra, ofm(1907-1976)

 真福雷永明神父( Bl. Gabriele M. Allegra, ofm)是意大利籍方濟會士,思高聖經學會的創辦人,與會士們將《聖經》新舊約全書翻譯為中文,被譽為「華人的聖熱羅尼莫」。

一、出生

 雷永明神父,一九0七年十二月廿六日,出生於意大利西西里島加塔尼雅城聖若望村,父名羅撒黎約,母名若安納,二人熱心事主,聖德非 凡,永明神父誦念諸聖禱文時,常愛呼求其父其母,代己轉求。生後領洗,取名若望斯德望。其母見其生性聰敏過人,異常活潑,往往指其子而對人慨 歎說:我兒若 望,來日如不流為一大盜,必將成為一位大聖。若望選擇了成聖之路,願意在故鄉過小兄弟會修會生活,遂去了阿喜勒雅肋,就讀於方濟會小修院。

二、小兄弟會會士

 一九二三年十二月十三日入小兄弟會,正式做初學,取名加俾額爾瑪利亞兄弟。發初願後,繼續學業,就讀高中。在校期間,品行學業為全校 之冠,師長寄以厚望,遂令其於一九二六年九月北上入京,在羅馬聖安多尼傳教學院攻讀傳教學,造就自己來華從事傳教工作。

 一九二九年七月廿五日潛發終身大願,永為方濟會會士;一九三0年七月二十日接受鐸品,永為司祭。

三、來華傳教

 一九三一年五月卅一日,由布林狄息港乘船來我中華。七月三日抵達上海。後由上海至漢口經長沙,於七月二十日,晉鐸第一週年紀念日,安 抵湖南衡陽教區──卅一年前范懷德主教,安守仁神父及董文學神父為主捐軀的所在地,衡陽。抵達當日即開始學習華語,執行傳教任務。一九三二年 柏長青主教委 任神父為衡陽教區小修院院長,直至一九三九年因病回國養疴。

四、回國養疴

 神父自來華後,夜以繼日鑽研中國文獻,譯述聖經典籍,操勞過度,因而成疾,須回國休養,遂於一九三九年夏離衡赴滬,乘船返國,結束其 在華初期傳教生活。在衡雖不及十載,然因神父才德出眾,待人謙和有禮,兼又慈悲為懷,深為教會內外人士所器重,對其離去,莫不依依;待其去 後,時時懷念, 倍加稱道。

 回國後,賴家人及同會弟兄悉心照顧,於短期內健康得以恢復。次年十一月遂已有意再度起程來華,然不能返回他心愛的衡陽教區,衡陽教區 他是沒有再見的機會了。他該起程赴北平,在那裡他更容易實現他的理想,來華傳教的主要目的:使我中華天主教教會有全部由原文譯注的聖經。

五、再度來華成立思高聖經學會

 由於戰事的影響,於一九四一年四月方能成行,由葡萄牙經美國日本而抵達上海。再由上海經南京而抵達北平,任意大利大使館主任司鐸,照 顧平津一帶意籍信徒,與中外人士多所接觸,傳教榮主救靈,甚有收穫。除此以外,一有餘暇,繼續譯述聖經,與著名學者研討中國文化,甚為中國學 者所賞識。當 時滯留在故都著名古生物學與人種學家德日進神父,曾一度與神父於此時作過長期的學術討論。

 一九四五年八月初二,天神之后節,神父終生縈懷的一大志願,終於得以實現,正式成立了譯注聖經的聖經學會,奉方濟會真福董思高為主 保,因而命名為思高聖經學會。真福董思高是神父一生特別敬愛崇奉的一位神學家,以他的思想和生活方式為學會人員的圭皋。

六、學會南遷香港

 由於內戰,平津吃緊,學會不得不他遷,以圖生存。神父高瞻遠矚,事前妥為籌劃,學會終於一九四八年八月至十月,分批遷來香港。神父壓 陣,最後南下,工作至一九六0年。是年因新近成立於新加坡的安道會學社需人組織領導,神父奉命前往膺任此職。至一九六三年由星返港再主持聖經 學會,從事出 版全部聖經合訂本及聖經辭典。此二書先後於一九六八年及一九七五年出版。如此,神父對我中華民族,對我中華天主教教會的傳教使命,引為己任的 譯注全部聖經 工作,終於賴在天中國之后,無玷童貞聖母的助佑,順利完成。神父大功告成後次年正月廿六日正午,蒙主寵召,安然與世長辭於香港嘉諾撒醫院,享 年六十有九。 港內外人士聞噩耗後,哀悼之餘,莫不異口同聲宣稱一聖人與世長辭矣。遂爭先恐後索求神父遺物,留作紀念,願神父在天為己轉求代禱,獲得所需。

 香港教區胡振中主教於1984年向教廷申請開始雷神父的列品案,教廷於十年後宣布他為「可敬品」,2012年9月29日在其家鄉西西 里卡塔尼亞省阿基雷爾市主教座堂舉行宣福禮。

七、生前傳教與學術活動

 神父領導聖經學會為我中華天主教教會完成了由原文譯注全部聖經的工作,因而為人譽為中華聖熱羅尼莫。除譯注經典外,神父還撰寫了不少 學術性論文、書評及書籍,發揮了他對於聖經學、聖母學、教父學、神修學、神學,以及有關方濟精神、方濟文獻淵博精微的知識和造詣。三次赴聖 地,兩次為客座 教授,在聖京耶路撒冷聖經學會教授聖經神學,其主題為若望福音與保祿書信。

 神父不論在何處,敬業守職,自不待言;但一有餘暇,必盡己所能,傳教牧靈:或聽告解講道,或主持退修,引導神職人員,修會士女,男女 信眾,熱誠奉主,孝愛聖母,隨從各自聖召,特殊身份,修德成聖,榮主救靈。受神父感召而向化者,在所多有;對神父感恩而懷德者,遍地皆是。

八、終生神修概畧

 神父的神修,以聖保祿、聖若望及真福董思高為導師,依循他們的神學探究宇宙君王基督及天主之母無玷童貞的奧蹟,實踐他們的神學思想, 全心、全靈、全意、全力熱愛基督君王及無玷童貞,以他們為捷徑,奔向為萬有萬善之源的天父。

 神父對無玷童貞聖母的孺慕孝愛,尤為人所共察,隨時隨地懷念默思聖母的痛苦;一心一意仰承體貼聖母無玷聖心,效法自己的主保聖加俾額 爾聖人和真福科耳貝,竭力推行特敬聖母痛苦和聖母無玷聖心的運動。在遠東親自成立了聖母無玷聖心侍衛團,且為此撰寫了一部情文相生,命名為 「升天捷徑,聖 母聖心」的專書。

 神父身為方濟會會士,甚具方濟精神,酷愛神貧,謙和慈祥,憐貧惜孤,尤其鍾愛身患殘疾癩病人士,喜與他們歡度聖誕復活佳節,自備禮物 前往,團聚聯歡誌慶。惟其如此,故人樂與神父親近,訴心求教。

 神父潛發終身大願之日,曾向聖母誠心懇求說:吁,瑪利亞,我甘飴的慈母,我懇求你賜我能為主捐軀,賞我能常度謙遜聽命,實在的方濟會 生活,使我一生不求人知,不離苦架。神父在將自己一生全然奉獻給天主的那一天,就已向天上無玷童貞的慈母,提出了自己今後為生的方案。神父一 生實踐了這一 方案,聖母實在賞賜了神父一生實踐了這一方案。此為諸凡與神父相逢、相識、相處的人士所共有的同感。

雷永明神父向聖言誦

 啊!降生成人的聖言,我的天主的聖言! 我願意耗盡我的一生,聆聽祢!

 啊!天父光榮的聖言!請驅散我心靈的黑暗,使我在祢的光照下,時常履行祢的聖意!

1/26: Blessed Gabriele M. Allegra, OFM (1907-1976)

God’s Word penetrates the human heart

Father Gabriele Allegra, our Franciscan Brother, enamored of God and God’s Holy Word, deeply understood the importance of the Bible in each Christian life. He was convinced that the Word of God, “strengthens faith, give food for the soul and provides a pure and lasting fount of spiritual life” (DV, No. 21). “Spiritual food is of two kinds,” he said, “the Holy Eucharist and the Bible.” He added, “we preach the Gospel because we firmly believe that God’s word can touch the human heart and penetrate the most unreasonable and stubborn of hearts.”

Bringing the Bible to the Chinese

For some 300 years, Chinese Catholic had almost no access to the Holy Scriptures in their own language. In his strong love for the Chinese people and their culture, Father Allegra succeeded in making the Scriptures available and relevant to them.

Allegra the man and Friar

Gabriel Allegra was born in San Giovanni la Punta, Sicily, Italy, on 26 December 1907. In October 1923, he joined the Friars Minor. In 1929, he pronounced his final vows in the Order, and in 1930, he was ordained a priest. In 31 May 1931, after having studied for five years at the Franciscan College in Rome (the Antoniamum), he left Italy for China where he worked as rector of the minor seminary for the Hengyeng Vicariate.

Very early in his life as a Franciscan friar, Allegra felt called by God to be an instrument to bring the Word of God to Chinese Catholics in a translation made from the original texts. Fortunately, Allegra was a linguistic genius, knowledgeable in French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Latin.

He also gained a working knowledge of English and German. But, of course, to realize his aim, he knew that he had to have a thorough knowledge of biblical languages: Hebrew and Greek. Expertise in all these language was still not enough. To realize his dream of translating the Bible from its original source into Chinese, he needed more than a basic knowledge of the Chinese language.

Immersion in the Chinese language and culture

As soon as he got to China, he set out learn Chinese and Chinese characters starting with textbooks used in the first grade of primary school. By 1935, by dint of hard work and determination, he had become an outstanding Chinese scholar. He began the translation of the Scriptures from the original Hebrew and Greek into Chinese.

Father Allegra returns to Italy

The work was exceedingly demanding. It took its toll on the devoted, tireless friar. Four years later, he suffered from nervous exhaustion and had to return to Italy for a rest. While recuperating in Italy he managed to spend one year studying at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome. He also went to the Holy Land to pursue further studies.

Back to China

When World War II broke out, he prayed fervently to be allowed to return to China as soon as possible. In November 1940, he flew to Madrid and then to Lisbon. On 14 February 1941, he booked passage on a ship to New York. From there he went to San Francisco and then he sailed for China via Japan arriving in Shanghai on Easter Sunday. He then boarded a train for Beijing.

On 26 April 1941 he arrived in Beijing and resided at the Italian embassy as chaplain before joining the Domus Franciscana community in 1943. Aware that he still had a great deal to learn before having sufficient proficiency in Chinese to ensure an inculturated Scripture, he enrolled at Fujen Catholic University where he immersed himself in the study of Chinese philosophy, language, history and culture.

The Work of translating the Bible

The task of translating the whole Bible into Chinese could not be the work on one person alone. Allegra realized that he needed a group of collaborators. At Fujen he met four young Chinese friars who were studying Chinese literature. When the young friars had finished their studies, the OFM delegate appointed them to assist Father. Allegra in the translation work. When the Studium Biblicum was founded in 1945, they became his assistants.

By the end of November 1944, Father Allegra had completed the incredible task of translating the whole of the Old Testament on his own. This accomplishment, however, still needed a great deal of work before it would be ready for final publication.

In training his colleagues he wrote, “Our aim is to learn how to study the Bible and China’s literary culture, it is to re-clothe the original vesture of the Bible with Chinese garments. The contents of the Bible remain what they are, but the form they take is Chinese.

Establishing the Studium Biblicum

On 2 August 1945, the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum was inaugurated in a building next to the Catholic University in Beijing. When Father Allegra first broached the idea of starting this institute, many thought the idea ill-timed and too visionary The Second World War was raging and some of the more “prudent” in the Order and outside were convinced that this was not an opportune time to open an academic society.

Father Allegra, however, felt an inner assurance that this was the will of God and threw public opinion to the wind. He felt that other Christian churched were much more zealous in preaching the Word of God, much bolder in confronting difficulties in bringing that Word to the people and more heddles in spending the money necessary to get the task done. He decided to put his faith and trust in God and Our Lady. He placed the Biblicum under the protection of Mary, the heavenly Queen of China. Since then each manuscript and page published by the Biblicum has been dedicated to the Immaculate Virgin Mary, Queen of China.

The Goal of the Studium Biblicum

The stated aim of this Studium is “to make a Chinese version of the Sacred Scripture of both Testaments accompanied with good commentaries, to edit this version in a one-volume edition after a careful revision, to edit a biblical lexicon and to publish a biblical-apologetically review.”

The Studium Biblicum finds a permanent home

Over the years the Studium Biblicum has had a number of homes. Within three years of its opening on the grounds of the Catholic University in Beijing, in 1945, it was transferred to Hong Kong. It was first located on Waterloo Road in Kowloon then relocated to Kennedy Road and in 1971 to Henderson Road.

Publishing the Bible

After completing the first draft of the Old Testament, Allegra’s four Chinese collaborators set about carefully examining the translation, correcting the text, improving and enhancing it. In September 1946 the Book of Psalms was ready for publication. The Wisdom literature and the Pentateuch were published in Beijing in 1947-48.

The publication work continued at an accelerated pace. The last five volumes of the Old Testament were published in three volumes between 1949-1954. The New Testament was published in three volumes between 1957-1961. After careful revision a one-volume Bible was published in 1968, shortly after Vatican Council II.

A Chinese Biblical Dictionary with 1,357 entries was published in 1975. The year 1990 was a landmark in the work of the Studium Biblicum: the Old Testament section of the Bible was published in Beijing and within two months some 5,000 copies had already been sold. In 1993 the Bishops’ Conference of the People’s Republic of China printed 20,000 copies of the Old Testament and 200,000 copies of the Studium’s entire Bible translation.

Allegra dies in Hong Kong

Father Allegra dies on 26 January 1976, in Hong Kong. His beatification was introduced on 10 May 1994. On 15 December 1994, Pope John Paul II formally confirmed that recognition. Allegra’s remains were transferred to Acireale (Sicily) to the Friars’ Church of San Biagio in May 1986.

For Allegra, the Word of God was truly alive. He knew deep in his heart that Word speaks to all generation and to all cultures, because it speaks to the human heart. He was convinced that “God has graciously arranged that the things he had once revealed for the salvation of all peoples should remains in their entirety throughout the ages and be transmitted to all generations” (DV, No. 7), and Father Allegra felt a very personal call to transmit that Word to generations of Chinese.

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一月27日:聖趙榮 (司鐸、 殉道)

 聖趙榮,一七四四年生於貴州,年青時,行為放蕩。聽福音後,痛改前非,於一七七六年受洗,取名奧思定。一七八一年晉鐸,忠於職守。教 難發生,被捕入獄,不堪折磨,遂於一八一五年死於獄中,時年七十一歲。一九○○年,由教宗良十三世宣佈他為真福。教宗若望保祿二世於 二○○○年十月一日 宣佈他為聖人。

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一月27日:聖安琪 拉.美利 西St. Angela Merici

 聖女於公元一四七○年左右,在意大利威尼斯教區代森霞諾出生。後入聖方濟第三會,集合少女們,教以實行愛德事工。一五三五年在意大利 白利塞城創立吳甦樂女修會,從事教育少女工作。一五四○年安逝。

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一月廿八日:聖多瑪 斯.阿奎 納(司鐸、聖師)(紀念)St. Thomas Aquinas

 聖教會最偉大的神學家中,首推聖多瑪斯•阿奎納。聖多瑪斯•阿奎納出身意大利望族,生於1255年(一說1227年),兄弟四人,聖 人最小,姐妹人數不詳。聖人幼時,與姐姐同在室內,風雨交作,姐姐被雷電擊斃,聖人卻安然無恙。所以後來的人們要求免除雷擊的意外,就多求聖 人轉禱。

 聖人五歲時,被送入喀卒諾山修院,接受啟蒙教育,該修院由本篤會會士主辦。年齡稍大,轉入那不勒斯大學攻讀文學。那不勒斯有一座多明 我會修院,聖多瑪斯常到這個修院聖堂念經祈禱,並和院內會士交往。他對多明我會的生活,非常嚮往,很想加入該會修道。此時聖人年僅十六歲,院 長叮囑他再等 待數年,從長考慮。三年後,聖人初衷不變,堅決要求棄俗修道。就在19歲那一年,加入了多明我會。

 他的兄弟不願他加入多明我會,就在路上用武力把他劫走,軟禁堡壘中。多瑪斯在軟禁期中,研究神學家伯多祿龍伯的著作,還潛心研究聖 經。他的兄弟威迫利誘,無法動搖他的意志,竟設法唆使妓女到多瑪斯室中,用美色誘惑他。多瑪斯大怒,赤手從爐中取出燃燒的炭,將娼妓驅逐。自 該時起,上主 賜他終身不再受肉情誘惑的特恩,酬報他守身如玉的英豪精神。兩年後,家人見多瑪斯志不可屈,就釋放他重返了修院。

 聖多瑪斯重入修院後,在聖大亞伯爾門下攻讀神學,同學們都德行傑出,博學多才。多瑪斯秉性沉默寡言,又生得身體魁梧同學遂賜以“啞 牛”綽號。一位熱心的同學見他外表笨拙,就自願替他補習。多瑪斯天性謙虛,欣然接受,每遇疑難字句,這位同學無法解釋,多瑪斯反倒替他講解, 頭頭是道。不 久,全班同學對多瑪斯漸加注意,私下將多瑪斯的筆記交給老師聖亞爾伯。聖亞爾伯讀後異常欽佩,相信多瑪斯不是平凡之人。第二天,就叫多瑪斯來 面試。考完 後,對眾學生說:“你們稱多瑪斯為啞牛,將來這位啞牛的叫聲,將震動普世。”但多瑪斯德聖德,比他的才學更為卓越。他日夜祈禱,與上主密契神 締。

 多瑪斯才學淵博,名震全歐,受聘為巴黎大學講師,聲譽廣揚,一時無反。就在這一段時期,他寫了有名的《答外教人》一書。這時多瑪斯已 成為國際神哲學界的權威,曾奉召赴意大利向教廷著名學者講學。大約在公元1266年,他著手編寫士林哲學中最偉大的不朽名著《神學大全》。

 1269年,多瑪斯重返巴黎。此時巴黎大學各學者對聖體聖事中存留的是麵餅的“依體”,還是麵餅的“外形”這一問題,爭說不休。大家 一致決定公請聖人解答。聖人熱心祈禱後,奮筆寫成“論聖體聖事”的論文一篇。在公開發表前,他先將文稿放在祭台上,供列於聖體前。吾主耶穌為 了表示他對聖 人的論著的讚賞,就顯現給多瑪斯,對他說:“你對於我聖體聖事的那篇文章,寫得很好。”聖人頓時神魂超拔,身懸空中。在旁的會士莫不嘖嘖稱 奇,聖人晚年 時,編寫《神學大全》第三部分,論述耶穌苦難及復活的奧跡。一天晚上,他跪在苦像前祈禱,突然有聲音自苦像中發出,對他說:“多瑪斯,你關於 我所寫的文 章,寫得好極了。你要什麼酬報?”多瑪斯答道:“主,我只望能享有您。”

 1273年聖尼各老瞻禮,多瑪斯獻祭時,獲主默示,從這時起,就擱筆停寫他的《神學大全》了。

 1274年,教宗額我略十世召開里昂大公會議,計劃勸導東方裂教會重返聖教懷抱。會前他特囑咐多瑪斯撰文攻斥希臘教派的謬論,並準備 在大會上宣讀這篇文章。多瑪斯這時已患重病,但仍然抱病啟程前往,出席會議。中途體力不支,到西斯篤修院暫時休息。院內修士對聖人慕名已久, 但以前無緣親 聆教言,現在因請聖人為他們講《雅歌》意義,聖人講稿未竟,就不幸謝世了。

 聖人自知病入膏肓,領臨終聖事後,開口祝告上主說:“我一生致力學術研究工作。除了愛你以外,別無其它目標。我這一生講學著作,都是 本於耶穌基督的信道,羅馬教會的信道。我將我的一切著作文稿呈現給教會,聽憑她審斷處理。”二日後,聖人離世升天,時在1274年3月7日清 晨,享受壽 50歲左右。同日,聖人的老師聖大亞爾伯當時在德國高郎,但他對同院修士放聲大哭道:“多瑪斯弟兄,我在基督內的愛子,教會之子,今天去世 了,上主將這死 訊啟示給我了。”

 多瑪斯於1323年榮列聖品。教宗聖庇護五世封聖人為教會聖師。 1880年,教宗良十三世,封聖人為學校主保。聖人著作等身,卷帙浩繁,包羅萬象,大部分是關於神哲學的論著。他對希臘哲學泰斗亞里斯多德的 思想有精深研 究,詳予引證,推陳出新,來闡釋聖教哲學。他的哲學論著,常用幾何學的求證方法,來分析神學問題;先將應證明的問題及各項疑難提出,然後根據 聖經文字,聖 教傳統教理,神哲學各項規律,用“已知”的真理,解釋及證明“未知”和“有待證明”的真理,最後將各項疑點逐一解答。所以他的論著,立論精 確,前後呼應, 讀後頓覺豁然開朗,疑團盡釋。

 聖人還撰有詮解聖經各重要部分及詮解各主要經文(天主經,聖母經,信經)的文章。但最負盛譽,最有價值著作為《神學大全》。脫利騰大 公會議把多瑪斯的《神學大全》與聖經和教宗詔書並列會議席上,其受教會重視的程度,由此可見一斑。聖人不僅是神哲學權威,對文學亦富有修養。 教宗吳爾班四 世欽定耶穌聖體瞻禮時,特囑託聖人撰寫該瞻禮彌撒經文。那文情並茂的繼抒詠,充盈了聖體奧蹟的全部內涵,深刻而簡明,實乃千古絕唱。現在聖體 遊行和聖體降 福中,一般信友,都能背誦如流的兩篇主要的唱詞:《O Salutalis Hostia》和《Pange lingua》(《Tantum ergo》是後者的末兩首。)就出自聖人手筆。

 聖多瑪斯的才學,固然出類拔萃,超人一等。但他的聖德,更為後人所景仰。他常說自己的知識是得自苦像前祈禱的遠比得自個人研究的多。 他將寫作與祈禱結合一體。他經常聲淚俱下,哀求上主,賜他領悟聖教各端奧理。多瑪斯的謙德更是我們的模範,他常自謙才學不如他人,總是虛心求 教,不恥下 問。與別人討論問題時,也總是心平氣和,從未發怒,也從不用言語諷刺對方。

Saint Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church

Patron Saint: Universities and Students

Saint Thomas Aquinas was the son of the count of Aquino, who was allied to the kings of Sicily and Arragon. When his son was five, according to the custom of the times, Count Landulph took him to the Abbey of Monte Cassino to be instructed.

He was only ten when the abbot told his father that a boy of such intelligence should not be 'left in obscurity' and he was sent to the University in Naples. There he studied a classic 'liberal arts' curriculum of the day; the Trivium of grammar, logic and rhetoric, and the Quadrivium of music, mathematics, geometry and astronomy. He soon surpassed his instructors there and could repeat all that he learned with more depth and lucidity than his masters.

At the age of nineteen, it was time for Thomas to chose the course of the rest of his life. To the surprise of all and the dismay of some, he chose the garb of a poor friar, a Dominican. His mother hurried to Naples to consult with her son, and the Dominicans sent him to Rome, on the way to Paris or Cologne. His mother, determined to turn Thomas away from the Dominicans, instructed his brothers (who were both soldiers) to capture Thomas and confine him in the fortress of San Giovanni at Rocca Secca.

There he remained for nearly two years, praying and studying while his family tried any means they could think of to lead him to abandon his vocation. His brothers even tried to damage his virtue, but Thomas drove the temptress out of his room with a burning branch he snatched from the fire. It was at this time that he received the gift of perfect chastity from God, a gift which was told to him by two angels in a dream, in answer to his prayers for purity of mind and body.

Finally, his mother relented, and Thomas was lowered over the walls in a basket and allowed to rejoin his Dominican brothers. After making his profession at Naples, and meeting with the Pope at the insistence of his family, Thomas was sent to Cologne where he studied under the celebrated Saint Albert the Great. Here he was nicknamed the 'dumb ox' because of his silent ways and large size. His preaching soon showed him to be, in fact, a brilliant student and thinker. By the age of twenty two, he was teaching at the University and writing his first books. After four year, by which time he was a priest, he was sent to Paris, where he continued to teach and received a doctorate.

This became Saint Thomas' life; praying, preaching, teaching, writing, and journeying. He was in great demand, many were anxious to hear him. He was friends with the King of France, Saint Louis, and the Popes, who frequently called on him to combat dangerous and heretical ideas, books and teachings. In the course of his life, he wrote some 40 books as well as some of the finest Latin hymns ever written. He declined appointment to bishoprics so that he could continue to study and write. His greatest work, the Summa Theologica is considered to be essential to any study of the teaching of the Catholic church.

Towards the end of his life, though, Saint Thomas ceased his writing. He experienced mystic ecstasies throughout his life, which became more frequent as he grew older. During the Mass on the Feast of Saint Nicholas, Saint Thomas had a profoundly mystical experience, one that left him dissatisfied with all his writing. 'I can do no more' he is reported to have said. 'Such secrets have been revealed to me that all I have written now appears to be of little value.'

Thomas began to prepare for death. But when he was summoned to the Council of Lyons by Pope Gregory X, he set out. He collapsed on the way and was taken to the Cistercian monastery of Fossa Nuova, where he lay in his final illness for a month.

When the end was near and extreme unction administered, Saint Thomas pronounced this act of faith:

If in this world there be any knowledge of this sacrament stronger than that of faith, I wish now to use it in affirming that I firmly believe and know as certain that Jesus Christ, True God and True man, Son of God and Son of the Virgin Mary, is in this sacrament...I receive Thee, the price of my redemption, for Whose love I have watched, studied and labored. Thee have I preached; Thee have I taught. Never have I said anything against Thee: if anything was not well said, that is to be attributed to my ignorance. Neither do I wish to be obstinate in my opinions, but if I have written anything erroneous concerning this sacrament or other matters, I submit all to the judgment and correction of the Holy Roman Church, in whose obedience I now pass from this life.

He died on 7 March, 1274, and numerous miracles proved his sanctity. He was canonized in 1323. After some discussion between the monks of the house where he died and those of his Order, his remains were transferred to the Dominican church in Toulouse. The shrine built over the spot was destroyed during the French revolution and his body was then moved to the Church of Saint Semin where it is today. The chief bone of his left arm is preserved in the cathedral of Naples and a bone of his right arm in Rome.

Eucharist quotes (1/28 St. Thomas Aquinas)

St. Thomas used to spend many hours in adoration before our beloved Lord. He once said that he learned more from prayer before the Blessed Sacrament than from many hours of study.

“The things we love tell us who we are.”

“No other sacrament (except the Holy Eucharist) has greater healing power; through it sins are purged away, virtues are increased, and the soul is enriched with an abundance of every spiritual gift.”

“It sometimes happens that such apparition comes about not merely by a change wrought in the beholders, but by an appearance which really exists outwardly. And this indeed is seen to happen when it is beheld by everyone under such an appearance, and it remains so not for an hour, but for a considerable time; and, in this case some think that it is the proper species of Christ’s body. Nor does it matter that sometimes Christ’s entire body is not seen there, but part of His flesh, or else that it is not seen in youthful guise, but in the semblance of a child, because it lies within the power of a glorified body for it to be seen by a non-glorified eye either entirely or in part, and under its own semblance or in strange guise... While the dimensions remain the same as before, there is a miraculous change wrought in the other accidents, such as shape, color, and the rest, so that flesh, or blood, or a child, is seen. And, as was said already, this is not deception, because it is done to represent the truth, namely, to show by this miraculous apparition that Christ’s body and blood are truly in this sacrament.” - St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Part III, Question 76: Of the Way in Which Christ is in This Sacrament, Article 8

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一月29日:聖福若 瑟(司 鐸)St. Joseph Freinademetz (1852-1908)

 聖福若瑟1852年4月15日生於前奧國(今義大利)帕迪亞.沃野村的一個熱心教友家庭。當日受洗,聖名若瑟。父母務農,共生子女十三 人,其中四人夭折,九人存活,若瑟排行老四。

 小若瑟自幼熱心乖巧,六歲上學,每天當步行山路三公里但他從不礦課。其品行成績常是班上第一名。

 十歲時,他得友人的幫助,到省城布萊森(Brixon)一所德語學校德文,並在該校以優等成績完成高小學業。十二歲他進入該城的小修道 院,以實現他自幼想做神父的心願。由於他天賦有好的歌喉,添為主教座堂的歌詠團團員,獲得助學金。小修道院期間,每學期他也都領獎。

 二十歲時,他進入大修道院。期間他曾聽到傳教士在外教國家傳教救人靈魂的英勇事蹟及他們犧牲奉獻,犯難救人的故事,自己已有心想做個傳 教士。大修道院期間,他一直是個熱心及用功的好學生。他的成績常名列前茅,每學期領獎。

 二十三歲升神父,被派到聖瑪爾定堂區做副堂,主要是負責管理該村的學校。他在該地任職二年,期間一天他讀到耶肋米亞先知<孩子們要餅 吃>的故事,幻覺從遠方,千萬陌生的外教兒童,高呼著向他要生命之糧,於是到外方傳教的思想時常縈繞著他。他雖在聖瑪爾定極得學生愛戴,堂的 信眾也都稱讚 他是位有德行的年輕神父,他仍決意去做個傳教士。

 他於1878年參加了在德國剛成立不久的傳教修會聖言會。在修會中他表現良好,遂與安治泰神父被派為第一批的中國傳教士,並於1879 年3月2日起程去中國。

 福神父是個志向高尚,心思細密,極富情感的人。當他啟程前,返回家鄉和聖瑪爾定的孩子們辭別的時候,他說:「我們天堂見,地上我們見不 了面了」時,孩子們都哭了,他也哭了。尤其當他陳述他辭別父母及家人的心情時,他說:「當我看見親愛的老父親和我慈愛的母親及情同手足的八個 兄弟姊妹都流 著眼淚。於是請父親降福了我,我也給他們降福。我們一同到祭台前,緘下我們一家神聖的誓盟…之後,我快速離開帕迪亞山腰,我的家鄉,也許永遠 不會再看見它 了。」

 1879年4月21日他到香港,立刻學習中國語言(廣東話)。為入境隨俗,他開始穿中國衣服,留了鬍子,也剃光頭,留辮子,幾撮黃髮, 挹在腦後,用黑繩綁上。他在香港辛苦的傳教兩年後,由於聖言會在山東省從聖方濟各會得了一個傳教區,他於1881年夏來到山東,先在省城濟南 府學習山東國 語八個月,於1882年4月到達他的目的地,陽穀縣的坡里莊。他與安神父二人的傳教轄區是山東南部的三十二個縣,面積六萬平方公里,人口九百 萬;1898 年德國佔領山東膠州灣後,又增加四個縣,面積一萬平方公里,人口二百萬。但他們到時,教友祇有坡里莊的158人。為他們這真是個很大的挑戰, 但為願做個好 傳教士的福神父,有那麼多的靈魂可救,太棒了。

 福若瑟神父56年的生命,30年在中國,其中27年在山東傳教。他曾五次做代理主教(主教出國時),八年做聖言會中國省省會長。山東南 部的36個縣,面積七萬平方公里(近台灣兩倍),他幾乎都工作過,且都走遍過多次。他做過游動的傳教士,也做過總鐸區的領導,修道院的院長。 主教不在時他 更做了主教府和各地的主管。他的工作及行政經驗是相當豐富的。由於他的熱心祈禱,克苦自勵,努力工作,及他的富於愛心,寬以待人等美範,在他 僅27年的耕 耘及他同工神父、修士和傳教員的合作下,面對各等惡劣的環境,從他開始的158個教友,能增至四萬人受洗,另四萬人準備受洗,這確實是一個驚 人的收獲。

 福神父穿中國的衣服,吃中國鄉下人簡單的食物,留著辮子,鬍子,在沒有任何交通工具的環境下,靠著一雙腿步行,無論炎天寒冬,晴天雨 天,福神父都不畏艱苦地上山下鄉,走遍面積七萬多平方公里,人口接近一千萬的魯南教區,為他們講道,探訪,施行聖事,最後為服務病患,而身染 傷寒,於 一九○八年一月廿八日逝世,他被稱為「魯南傳教區之父」。

 他在家書上寫著:「我願在天堂仍是中國人,我願為中國人死一千次,我沒有其他的心願,只希望我的屍骨埋在中國同胞中間。」有關他的聖德 和為人, 凡認識他的人,莫不嘉評如潮。他受神父們的敬愛,教友們的誇讚,甚至那些過去罵他「洋鬼子」及迫害他的外教人,也都成了他的朋友。因為他心中 有愛,他愛中 國,愛中國人,因此人也不恨他,和他的宗教了。

 福神父說:「愛是教外人所懂得的唯一外國語言。」

 一九七五年十月十九日 教宗保祿六世宣布他為真福。教宗若望保祿二世於 二○○三年十月五日 宣布他為聖人。

 為了不要和聖多瑪斯. 阿奎納的紀念日疊加,教會立1月 29日來紀念 聖福若瑟。

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一月29日:聖王炳 及同伴 (殉道)

 聖王炳,聖名老楞佐,一八○二年生;林昭,聖名亞加大,一八一七年生;盧廷美,聖名熱羅尼莫,一八一○年生;三人皆為貴州人。貴州教 難時三人同時殉道,時在 一八五八年一月二十八日,一九○九年教宗庇護十世奉三位為真福。教宗若望保祿二世於 二○○○年十月一日 宣佈他們為聖人。

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一月三十一日:聖若 望鮑思高 神父(司鐸)(紀念) St. John Bosco

【1815~1888】

『獨自一人成就小,偕同聖母成就大。』

﹝聖若望鮑思高神父在進鐸的第一台感恩祭,講道中的一句格言﹞

 1815年鮑思高神父在意大利北部的都靈出生,家境清貧,兩歲父親病逝,幸有慈祥而虔誠的母親,教授他認識天主的信仰。他雖然出身貧 寒,但藉著堅強的奮鬥,聰穎的領悟力,終可接受高深的教育。晉陞鐸品後,從事牧靈和福傳工作。1857年創立慈幼會,不久又創立了聖母進教之 佑修女會。有 教無類、作育英才是鮑思高神父辦學的宗旨,特別是引導叛逆的青少年,重納正軌。他是教育家及青年的導師,他帶給世界不可勝數的男女學童,得到 新穎的知識技 能和純潔的基督精神。1888年1月31日鮑思高神父逝世。1943年被列入聖品,奉為現代青年的宗徒。

聖若望鮑斯高( 慈幼會會祖 ) St. John Bosco

屬於天主的非凡人物

 天主不時在教會內興起一些男男女女,為引導和鼓勵祂的子民,使他們更接近祂。鮑思高神父是宗座轄下兩個國際性修會的會祖,亦創立了慈 幼會第三會 (Salesian Third Order)、慈幼協進會 (the Pious Association of Salesian?義者,締造具體的現實,已獲教會列入聖品。

I. 早年生活

家庭生活

 鮑思高神父在教宗碧岳九世的要求下撰寫回憶錄,並以童年生活開始。若望麥基奧 (John Melchior) 生於一八一五年八月十六日。滑鐵盧一役在該年發生,意大利和歐洲自此進入新時代,積極修復拿破崙時代的遺害,並透過王朝復辟,達致國家團結和 推翻奧地利統 治。此外,秘密組織、共濟會 (Freemasonry) 及反教權運動亦如雨後春筍般冒起。

 若望鮑思高在距離杜林 (Turin) 約二十哩的亞斯底新堡(Castelnuovo d’Asti) 現為鮑思高新堡Castelnuovo Don Bosco) 的碧基 (Becchi) 小村莊出生和長大。他父親方濟類斯 (Francis Louis) 與前妻育有一子一女,分別為安東尼 (Anthony) 及幼年夭折的德蘭(Teresa)。第二任妻子是來自加比利奧 (Serra Capriglio) 的瑪加利大‧奧其納 (Margaret Occhiena, 1788-1856),婚後再添兩個兒子,分別為若瑟 (1813-1862) 及若望 (1815-1888)。若望生於八月十六日,於翌日在聖安德肋堂由副本堂若瑟‧費斯特神父 (Don Joseph Festa) 付洗,代父母為加比利奧的奧其納‧麥基奧 (Occhiena Melchio) 與新堡的瑪達肋納‧鮑思高 (Magdalene Bosco)。 若望家境清貧,家裡的產業只有一座小屋、一幅土地及一個小葡萄園。父親為養活妻兒,在地主畢安納 (Biglione) 的農場工作,卻不幸於一八一七年五月十一日病逝。小若望當時只有二十一個月大,但日後將成為「孤兒的慈父」。他的祖母瑪加利大朱克 (Margaret Zucca) 卒於一八二六年。

 若望的母親瑪加利大‧奧其納虔誠過人,為人細心、謹慎、冷靜、寬容、善待貧苦者。她不會讀書寫字,卻熟悉教理,對反叛的繼子安東尼非 常忍耐。鮑思高一家經歷了比哀蒙 (Piedmont)的經濟危機和艱難時期。安東尼經常違抗繼母,使家裡永無寧日,與小若望的關係亦日趨緊張。小若望年僅八歲,便要在家裡和 農田幹活,幫 忙牧放牛羊。他與村童一同嬉戲,身手敏捷,性格堅強,喜歡到市集觀看和模仿小丑、魔術師和雜技員,獲得同輩甚至更年長朋友的愛戴。他富於想象 力、敏銳、認 真,有時顯得沉默寡言。他的啟蒙老師是村內一個農夫。當時瑪加利大的姊妹瑪利安納 (Mariane) 在加比利奧的拉克神父 (Fr. Lacqua) 家裡當管家。在她幫助下,瑪加利大約在一八二四年至一八二七年把小若望送到神父開辦的學校讀書,但為時只有數月。

九歲奇夢

 小若望九歲時,夢見一位衣履華貴的神秘人物,勸導他以「溫良和愛德」對待那些惹事生非的男青年。這位男士亦要求小若望教導那些頑童 「罪惡的醜陋和德行的美善」。接著,一位尊貴的女士出現了,她是那位男士的母親。她溫柔地拉著小若望的手,讓他看著一群野獸化為羔羊。她對小 若望說:「你 應謙卑、堅強和健壯。發生在這些野獸身上的事,你也要為我的孩子實行。」小若望認為,耶穌和聖母藉這個奇夢告訴他,他的終身使命就是照顧被遺 棄的孩子。聖 母對他說:「在適當時候,你自會明白一切。」六十年後,在他辭世前八個月,他在羅馬耶穌聖心堂的聖母祭台舉行感恩祭,多次因激動而落淚。他後 來解釋說,當 時他鮮明地憶起童年的夢境,而且已明白一切,一切都是聖母的作為!

困難重重的學習生活

 安東尼和若瑟從沒有機會到學校讀書,因此安東尼反對小若望上課,要求小若望跟他和若瑟到農田幹活。小若望年少時喜歡聚集其他男青年, 為他們講寓言故事,表演雜技,走拉緊的繩,然後與他們一起祈禱,以及向他們重述本堂神父講過的道理。這些活動全獲得母親的准許。一八二六年三 月二十六日, 他在新堡初領聖體,由施蒙多神父 (Don Sismondo) 主持禮儀。瑪加利大協助他妥善準備自己,向天主感恩。他回憶說:「自那天起,我似乎有點改進了。」

莫利約農莊

 由於安東尼一直反對小若望讀書,瑪加利大在一八二八年二月送小若望到八公里以外的蒙哥谷(Moncucco) 村,在莫利約 (Moglia) 家族的農場幹活。他在那裡每年可賺得十五里拉。每個主日清早,他都徒步走到蒙哥谷的聖堂,找柯提諾神父 (Don Cottino) 辦告解及領聖體,然後與莫利約一家參與十一時正舉行的感恩祭,下午則與鄰家的孩子玩耍,向他們重述母親講過的耶穌生平事蹟。他放牛或在農場幹 活時,總是手 持一本拉丁文文法書。類斯莫利約(Luigi Moglia) 問他為何如此熱衷學習,他答說:「因為我想當神父。」一八二九年十一月,他對舅父彌格 (Mark Michael) 說,雖然他們待他不錯,但他想讀書。於是,舅父把他送返碧基。

賈勞束神父的學生

 過了一段日子,他在一八二九年十一月在蒲底里拉 (Buttigliera) 完成「傳教工作」返家途中,遇見莫里亞多 (Morialdo) 的本堂神父若望•賈勞束神父 (John Melchior Calosso)。賈勞束神父年屆七十,是神學博士。他見這孩子能夠背誦長篇的講道內容,十分欣賞,便同意收容他,教他拉丁文,亦是若望的神 師。不幸地, 賈勞束神父於一年後突然身故,卒於一八三O年十一月二十一日。賈勞束神父臨終時,把自己的六千里拉儲蓄全數留給若望,作為若望進修為司鐸的經 費,他的親人 也沒有異議,但若望考慮片刻後,選擇仰賴天主的照顧,把保管遺產的鑰匙交還神父的親人,並說:「我甚麼也不要。」

 一八三一年,在安東尼結婚前,瑪加利大與他分家。她把碧基的產業留給安東尼後,帶著若瑟和若望遷到鄰近新堡的薩森布諾 (Sussambrino) 作佃農。若望回到新堡上課,每天徒步行走五哩四次,有時亦與韋拉諾神父 (Don Virano) 及莫利約神父 (Don Moglia) 等老師同行。

基愛里

 一八三一年十一月四日,他在距離新堡十二公里的基愛里中學 (Chieri Secondary School) 讀書,每月須支付十二里拉。他極不情願地在村內到處乞討小麥、水果和乳酪等物品,用作支付學費。在前往基愛里途中,他對若望斐理培祿 (John Filippelli) 傾訴說:「我想讀書,我想獻出整個生命照顧男青年。」當時基愛里住滿神父、學生和紡織工人。若望在那裡生活了十年。學校重視實踐信仰本份,每 天舉行感恩 祭,以告解券及品德證鼓勵學生,並規定使用祈禱書。他在朋輩間極受歡迎。

 若望鮑思高記憶力強,每晚可背誦不少意大利文和拉丁文古典作品。他最初寄住在馬基肅 (Marchisio) 家,翌年則住在寡婦璐琦馬塔 (Lucia Matta) 家。為支付生活費,他須幫忙做家務,亦為馬塔廿二歲的兒子補習。其後在一八三四年,他住在若瑟‧畢恆德 (Joseph Pianta)家裡。若瑟‧畢恆德是咖啡館東主,若望在那裡學懂製作各式各樣的糕餅。他亦曾住在裁縫多瑪斯卡明諾 (Thomas Cumino) 的家。有一段時間,鐵匠瓦西奧沙維豪 (Evasio Savio)教他使用鐵鎚及在爐邊打鐵。日後華道谷工場開辦時,他將親自擔任首名導師。當時,他夢見自己成為司鐸,負責看管許多男青年,亦明 白這是他終身 的工作 (參閱B.M 1, 182)。他亦是演員、歌手、即興詩人和魔術師,更組織了「同樂會」(Company of merry makers),與朋友輪流在各人的家裡聚會,討論信仰。若望十八歲時,於一八三三年八月四日在蒲底里拉(Buttigliera d’Asti) 領堅振,儀式由薩沙里 (Sassari) 的賈諾提總主教 (Archbishop John Antony Gianotti) 主持,代父母為若瑟‧馬薩諾 (Joseph Marsano) 及約瑟芬梅利納伯爵夫人 (Countess Josephine Melina)。

II. 司鐸培育

修院生活

 一八三四年四月十八日,若望十九歲,在神師若瑟馬洛尼神父 (Canon Joseph Maloria) 反對下,決定加入基愛里的方濟會,並獲取錄為備修生,準備加入和平會院 (Friary of Peace),但一個夢改變他的決定。他諮詢賈發束 (Don Caffaso) 神父後,在賈發束神父及辛澤諾神父 (Fr. Cinzano) 協助下,於一八三五年十月三十日加入基愛里教區的神學院。他在十月二十五日領會衣時,立下七大決志。他在神學院進修的六年內 (一八三五 – 一八四一),每個學期都獲授用作獎勵最優秀學員的奬學金。他接受的訓練極為嚴苛,具有楊森主義色彩,亦難以接觸教職員。他極為自律、刻苦、避 免嬉戲、慎選 朋友。後來,他後悔花時間研究異教典籍,而漸漸對聖經和教會史產生濃厚興趣。類斯高木祿 (Louis Comollo) 是他在神學院時代的摯友,其後於一八三九年逝世,使他十分難過。

天主的司祭

 他在神學院時,經常放棄早飯,每朝到聖斐理伯堂 (St. Philip’s church) 領聖體,然後準時回去上課。他只要專心聽課便可熟記內容,因此每天可用四至五小時閱讀書籍,尤其是有關聖經歷史及教會史的著作。在第三學年的 暑假,他已修 畢第四學年的科目,獲特別批准入讀第五學年。一八四O年九月十九日,他獲授五品,並於翌年三月二十九日領受執事職。若望鮑思高於一八四一年六 月五日聖三主 日前夕晉鐸,由弗森尼總主教 (Archbishop Fransoni)在他的私人小堂主持晉鐸儀式。他當天所立的決志包括嚴格善用時間、學習聖方濟沙雷 (St. Francis of Sales) 的溫良、晚上只睡五至六小時、日間不休息。他在聖三主日於杜林聖方濟亞西西堂 (St. Francis of Assis) 的護守天神祭台 (Guardian Angel’s altar) 舉行首祭。他稱這天為「一生最美妙的日子」(參閱BM, I, 386)。

吸引的職務

 新晉鐸的若望神父比以往更渴望為青年獻身。在賈發束神父建議下,他拒絕接受三個職務:在熱那亞 (Genoa) 一個富裕家庭擔任家庭教師,年薪一千里拉;比一般薪俸高兩倍的年薪在家鄉莫里亞多任職本堂神父;以及在他頗受歡迎的新堡,在辛澤諾神父擔任本 堂的堂區出任 副本堂。在賈發束神父建議下,他選擇到杜林聖方濟亞西西堂附近的司鐸培養院 (Convitto),進修為期三年的牧民課程,研習倫理神學和宣講,「學習如何當司鐸」。瑪加利大早已警告他說:「若你不幸發了財,我絕不 會再見你。」 (MB I, 222) 鮑思高神父在一八四一年十一月入讀司鐸培養院,逐漸擺脫基愛里神學院嚴苛訓練的陰影。除了上課外,他亦在杜林的多個中心講道、聽告解和講授教 理。

III. 青年的使徒

瞭解青年處境

 有一次,鮑思高神父探訪高登倫哥神父管轄的「天佑小舍」 (Little House of Divine Providence)。高登倫哥神父以先知的直覺對鮑思高神父說:「你的會衣太薄了,換一件更堅韌耐用的吧,這樣孩子才不會把會衣扯破。」 他走在大街小 巷,瞭解青年的實際生活處境,並發現市郊有許多不同年齡的孩子到處蹓躂,惹事生非,褻瀆天主。這些孩子無家可歸,亦已離開堂區,陷入困境,使 人惋惜。

 一八四四年,比哀蒙約有七千一百四十八名十歲以下的孩童受僱於絲廠、羊毛廠和棉廠,亦有些是地盤的建築工人、泥水匠、工匠、油漆工 人。鮑思高神父的青年中心聚集了青年技工、學徒、石匠及每天清潔多至十五個煙囪的煙囪清潔工人。工業革命迫使他們每天工作十三至十四小時,但 收入微薄,六 至七個月的薪酬只有二十五至三十里拉,而歐洲其他地區的情況同樣惡劣。

 這位熱心的年青司鐸與本堂賈發束神父一同探訪監獄後,尤其難過。他看見許多年屆十二至十八歲的青年,身體健康,心智聰明,但懶惰骯 髒,缺乏精神和物質的食糧,使他怵目驚心。他探訪「高登倫哥機構」(Cottolengo Institute) 時亦感難過,那裡收容了一千八百名無父無母的青年。鮑思高神父邀請他們說:「你們離開這裡後,請來聖方濟堂,我會協助你們在社會找到立足之 所。」

偉大事業的開端

 一八四一年十二月八日,聖母無玷始胎節,鮑思高在聖方濟亞西西堂的祭衣房準備舉行感祭恩時,看見祭衣房主管高木底 (Comotti) 虐打一個孩子,只因為他不懂輔彌撒。這名十六歲的少年就是祿茂‧夏來理 (Bartholomew Garelli),是個砌磚工人。神父與孩子攀談,發現他還沒有初領聖體,亦不認識教理。感恩祭結束後,鮑思高神父與少年成為朋友,為他講授 教理,而且 「在他身上,看見所有貧苦無依的青年在求助」(方濟維伊奧Francis Veuillot),從而開始了他的偉大事業。夏來理在下一個主日帶來了六個同伴,來訪的少年在二月初增至二十人,在三月則更增至三十人,很 快因為地方有 限,須把人數限制在八十人。

遷徙不定的青年中心

 這些男青年來自遙遠的村莊,冬天返回家鄉,或住在鮑思高神父的青年中心。他開辦教理班,舉行禮儀,一同遊戲及唱歌。他在聖方濟亞西西 堂附屬的房間講授教理,並在司鐸培養院的庭院玩遊戲。卡巴諾 (Carpano)、龐德 (Ponte) 及德維魯 (Trivero) 等年青神父亦協助他。由於青年數目日增,鮑思高因此把青年帶到廣場、大街及郊外。他們急需更合適的地方。一八四四年,鮑思高神父離開司鐸培養 院,在巴羅洛 侯爵夫人 (Marchioness Barolo) 開設的「濟良所」(Refuge) 出任斐洛美納小醫院 (St. Philomena hospital) 的院牧。濟良所收容了四百名少女,鮑思高神父的工作是協助包萊神父 (Don Borel),為她們講道和聽告解。自十月十三日起,他開始在聖方濟沙雷小堂兩個空置的大房間舉行聚會。然而,頑童使「濟良所」的住客感到困 擾。七個月 後,巴羅洛夫人要求他在她的事業與男青年之間作出抉擇。雖然她給鮑思高神父時間考慮,但鮑思高神父毫不猶疑地選擇服務男青年。

 由於出入青年中心的男青年約有四百名,鮑思高神父自一八四五年五月起物色其他聚會場所。其後,他們在陶拉 (Dora) 河畔聖瑪爾定小堂 (chapel of St. Martin) 附近的聖伯多祿縲絏堂 (St. Peter-in-chains) 找到一個荒廢的墳場,在那裡聚集。鮑思高神父亦在這裡遇上年僅八歲的彌額爾盧華 (Michael Rua),他在莫雷達神父 (Don Moretta) 的私人房子租用三個房間,最後向斐利比 (Philippi) 兄弟租借空地。本堂神父抱怨他使青年脫離他們的操控。市長馬圭斯賈富 (Marquis of Cavour) 對鮑思高神父說,他的工作是沒有用的。包萊神父亦勸他把男青年的數目限制在約二十人。有些人認為鮑思高神父是革命者、空想家,甚至是瘋子。他 曾講述有關青 年中心未來發展的夢境,向別人保證青年中心將設有聖堂和學校、工場和操場。然而,情況沒有改善。兩位教區神職修士文生龐渣底 (Vincenzo Ponzati) 及類斯那西 (Luigi Nasi) 在巴羅洛侯爵夫人的善意提點下,提出付錢讓鮑思高神父入住精神病院,後來他們自己反而被困,幾經辛苦才可脫身。其實是機智的鮑思高神父巧施妙 計,使他們代 替自己被抓進精神病院。

畢納地木棚

 一八四六年四月五日,鮑思高神父與斐利比訂立的租約到期了,但找不到其他地方讓青年聚集。那是他一生最悲傷的日子之一。潘克拉喬蘇雅 維 (Pancrazio Soave) 帶他到方濟畢納地 (Francis Pinardi) 的木棚。木棚十五米長,六米寬,旁邊有一塊空地。鮑思高以三百二十法郎租用,並大幅改裝。青年中心從此進入新階段。潘克拉喬原本打算用作澱粉 廠的雜物房成 為一所小聖堂。總主教在一八四六年四月十二日復活主日舉行祝聖典禮。青年中心繼續舉行禮儀、教理班、遊戲、音樂活動,舊僕人也回來幫忙,數以 百計的男青年 每個主日都在此聚集。市長馬圭斯賈富試圖禁止這些聚會,幸得國王查爾斯阿爾伯特 (King Charles Albert) 及時制此,青年中心方可繼續營運。

 然而,鮑思高神父的健康日漸衰退,甚至領受了傅油聖事。男青年及其他人士為他獻上犧牲和祈禱,使他恢復健康。這位良善的神父懷著感激 之情,決志以餘生服務男青年。他在碧基療養數週後,在聖德昭著的母親陪同下,於一八四六年十一月三日返回杜林。瑪加利大當時已經五十八歲了。 她在人生最後 十載陪伴自己的司鐸兒子,勇敢面對各種困難,照顧數以百計的孤兒,作他們的母親。

主日時間表

 鮑思高神父向畢納地租用房子後,開設三間工作室,讓青年在這裡安頓下來。十二月一日,他以年租七百里拉租用全幢房子。參加晚間課程的 男青年約有三百人。鮑思高神父把他的工作交托給溫良及有涵養的聖方濟沙雷,認為他的愛德方法、使徒熱忱及中庸之道都適合鮑思高神父充滿挑戰的 工作。

 主日和節日的時間表包括告解、感恩祭、講解福音、玫瑰經、聖體降福、反省聖經史或教會史、餘暇活動、演說、唱歌等。鮑思高神父盡量抽 時間陪伴這些男青年,他們的數目約為四百至五百人。他也在平日到處找尋其他男青年,邀請他們到青年中心,教他們讀書寫字、數學和繪畫,並提供 他最重視的信 仰培育。他為青年找工作,到工廠探望學徒。他與僱主訂立合約,而合約條款是工會多年所期望的。於一八五一年十一月,他為若瑟波東尼 (Giuseppe Bordone) 與玻璃廠的嘉祿艾梅諾 (Carlo Aimino) 訂立一份開創先河的合約。鮑思高神父或許是意大利首位為青年工人舉行退省的神父。各種組織開始成立,男青年藉此參與自我培育。一八四七年,他 為青年中心擬 定詳細守則。一八四八年,有人企圖透過窗戶射殺他,但他逃過大難,其後亦多次遇上類似的襲擊。

開辦寄宿學校

 一八四七年五月,除了開辦喜樂盈盈的青年中心,鮑思高神父亦為急需食物、衣服和住處的青年開辦首間收容所。一晚,孤兒亞歷山大•佩莫 納 (Alessander Pescarmona) 全身被雨水濕透,飢腸轆轆,請求借宿一宵。雖然過去曾經碰壁,但鮑思高神父還是答應了他,讓他成為慈幼會首名寄宿生。鮑思高神父當時已買下整 幢房子,並在 天主的眷顧下,獲得二萬八千五百里拉購入更多物業。由於男青年的數目日增,他得想辦法提供食物、衣服和醫療。他雖然極不願意,但也得向富裕人 家乞求,且一 生也是如此。他的母親瑪加利大甚至變賣她的嫁衣和小首飾,以裝修小聖堂。在這個動蕩時期,鮑思高神父雖然受到各方施壓,但仍然明智地放下政治 活動。

其他中心

 一八四七年,鮑思高神父在新城門區 (Portanuova) 開設聖類斯青年中心 (St. Aloysius),兩年後在溫基利亞 (Vanchiglia) 設立護守天神青年中心。一八五一年,他開始建造新聖堂,以取代舊聖堂。一八五二年六月二十日,他把新聖堂奉獻給聖方濟沙雷,而建造經費來自一 次大型抽奬活 動,籌得二萬六千里拉。他共籌辦了十五次同類的抽奬活動。

作家

 為駁斥華而多教派 (Waldensian) 的宣講,他發行《致公教徒的忠告》及《公教讀物》。他亦出版了《教會史》(一八四五)、《十進制》、《聖經歷史》、《意大利史》、《釀酒學》 (一八四 六)、《少年良伴》一八四七),以及許多短篇傳記和敬禮祈禱書籍。一八四九年,他出版《少年良友》(Amico della Gioventu) 雜誌,後來因經費不足而停刊,但顯示他熱衷推廣優質讀物。他出版的《公教讀物》激怒華而多教徒,他們更多次試圖殺害他,但經常有一頭奇犬突然 撲出,嚇跑行 兇的人。他稱這頭奇犬為「灰奇」(Grigio)。這些小冊子以各種語言出版,歷時整個世紀,其後由《子午線十二》代替。他的青年祈禱書籍 《少年良友》陸 續發行一百二十二版,每版刊發五萬冊。他的著作包括公民史、教會史、教宗和聖人傳記,以及道明•沙維豪等聖德昭著的男青年的生平。根據《傳記 辭典》 (Dizionario Biografico) 所列,他共出版一百四十八本著作,包括神修、文化、學術、戲劇和娛樂作品,以及妥為刪節及註解的意大利文、拉丁文和希臘文著作。他在一八七七 年為慈幼協進 會出版的《慈青通訊》(Salesian Bulletin) 現時以四十八種語文發行。

 他最傑出的學生之一就是道明沙維豪一八五四年十月二日,這位年僅十二歲的良善少年在碧基遇上鮑思高神父,並在十月二十九日加入慶禮 院,其後於一八五七年三月九日逝世,享年十四歲,一九五四年六月十二日,他獲教宗碧岳十二世列入聖品,成為教會最年青的精修聖人。

自設工場

 每年都有年青工人加入青年中心,一八五三年有十名,一八六六年有一百二十名。鮑思高神父認為需要自設工場,因為男青年在外面很容易接 觸到不道德和褻瀆的事物。一八五三年,他在畢納地的房子旁邊建造一幢房屋,自行開辦工場。製鞋及裁縫工場最初設於畢納地房子的走廊,由鮑思高 神父親自擔任 首位導師。一八五四年開設釘書工場,一八五六年開設木工工場,一八六二年開設印刷及金工工場。因此,約有三百名男青年毋須外出工作。根據伯多 祿史迪拉神父 (Fr. Pietro Stella) 所述,鮑思高神父多年來也收容寄宿生,有些更是孤兒(括號所註),在一八五四年為數三十九(八)名,一八五五年八十三(十九)名,一八五六年 九十(二十 五)名,一八五七年一百一十六(四十)名,一八五八年一百一十三(三十二)名,一八五九年一百八十四(四十四)名,一八六O年三百五十五(八 十四)名,一 八六一年二百九十九(六十九)名,一八六二年三百二十八(七十)名,一八六三年三百六十(八十三)名,一八六四年二百五十七(七十九)名,一 八六五年三百 五十八(一百一十九)名,一八六六年四百一十(一百四十八)名,一八六七年四百一十二(一百二十四)名,一八六八年三百六十六(九十八)名, 一八六九年三 百七十五(一百O九)名。在最後數年收錄的男青年更超逾八百(二百五十)名。男青年只須支付少量費用,甚至完全毋須付費。鮑思高神父在生時, 他們的經費一 直緊絀,情況有如一條用作克己的釘鏈,使他比禁食和穿苦衣的中古時代聖人更加痛苦。

自辦學校

 一八五五年,鮑思高神父請方濟夏神父 (Francesia) 擔任教師,於畢納地一個房間開辦學校。約在一八五九年至一八六O年,這間中學已全面營運,男青年及合資格教師人數合共約二百人。鮑思高神父孜 孜不倦地工 作,希望這些男青年學有所成。因此,一位大學教授曾評論說:「在鮑思高神父這裡,你必須認真學習。」自修室瀰漫著嚴肅寧靜的信仰氣氛。

告解神師

 鮑思高神父旨在培育「良好的公民及虔誠的基督徒」。他最重視良心培育,因此強調辦告解和領聖體,每天聽告解兩至三小時,甚至在遠行時 亦然,也會在意想不到的場所聽告解,例如在馬車上抓著韁繩聽馬車夫告解。他的告解牧職可媲美聖維雅納 (Cure d’Ars)。一八八七年十二月十七日,在他身故前六週病重期間,他為約三十名男青年聽告解。他對神職修士費斯特 (Festa) 說:「這是我最後一次如此幫助他們了。」

培育教會聖召

 比哀蒙政局動蕩,以致聖召短缺。鮑思高自推行他的事業開始,已重視培育司鐸和修道聖召,尤其在貧苦階層推行培育,不僅是為了他的工 作,亦為教區及其他修會的發展。除了培訓工藝生外,他在一八四九年開始收錄讀書生。這些讀書生有意領受聖職,就讀於市內的私校。最初,鮑聖只 挑選了四名青 年。他們領了會衣,但其後全都離開了,其中兩名加入教區。然而,他並沒有失望。單單在一八六一年,鮑思高神父的青年中心有三十四名讀書生晉 鐸。事實上,比 哀蒙神學院的聖召主要來自青年中心。他設立的「瑪利亞之子」成年聖召計劃,培育了不少信德堅強的偉人,尤其是遠赴傳教區服務的傳教士。根據估 計,鮑思高神 父為教會培育了二千五百個聖召。馬賽 (Marseilles) 修士會 (Congregation of Brothers) 的會院大事年表在一八七七年記述:「我們當中有個偉人,在三十四年內為教會培育了六千位司鐸,我們深感榮幸。」(CDB, 97)

IV. 慈幼會

創立修會的想法

 天主透過神夢啟迪鮑思高神父,若瑟賈發束神父亦鼓勵他說:「你絕對需要一個修會。」(BM V, 452)。因此,他早在一八四七年便開始構思成立修會。他明白,為延續他的工作,他需要助手,而且這些助手須充滿他的精神。外聘教師並不可 靠,他們經常剝 削學生,而非幫助他們。他希望組織一群為他獻身及服務青年的修道者。鮑聖收錄學生入讀寄宿學校,亦是為了在貧苦階層當中培育司鐸和合作人,共 同推行他的使 徒工作。事實上,這也是他每年與男青年探訪碧基的原因之一。

 然而,當時的政局絕不利於成立修會。政府甚至宣稱有權提名主教,政教之間亦有公開衝突。一八五五年,反教權的拉達濟 (Rattazzi) 通過「有關修道者的法例」(Law regarding the Friars),藉此鎮壓三十五個修會,關閉了三百三十四個會院,驅逐五千四百五十六位司鐸、修士和修女,剝奪他們的公民權利。「在那個時代 要創立修會, 好比在地震時建屋。」(戴雷樵‧卜斯可Teresio Bosco) 然而,難以置信的奇蹟發生了。反教權的拉達濟竟然建議鮑思高神父成立修會,而且教他各種繞過法律的方法。鮑思高神父的學生盧華、賈烈勞 (Cagliero)、方濟夏 (Francesia)、安琪沙維豪 (Angelo Savio)、羅吉第 (Rocchietti)、杜爾基 (Turchi) 及其他學生選擇「留在他身邊」。鮑思高神父開始為可能加入這個修會的候選人作出「訓勉」(conferences),但他們並不知道鮑思高神 父的計劃。他 們不喜歡「出家」。賈烈勞願意留下,並不是因為他渴望修道,而是因為他深愛鮑思高神父。一八五九年,鮑聖明言要成立修會,並請他們作出抉擇。 猶豫良久後, 賈烈勞說:「我決定了,一如以往,我絕不會離開鮑思高神父……不管是否『出家』,為我沒有分別!」(BM VI, 181)

 一八五四年一月二十六日,鮑思高與賈烈勞、盧華及其他兩名男青年傾談時,向他們暗示將成立修會,以延續他的青年工作。他們先會作出許 諾,期望日後可以發願。他們採用溫良的日內瓦 (Geneva) 主教的姓氏,取名為「沙雷會士」(譯按:原文為Salesiani,中文起初稱為撒肋爵會士,其後改稱「慈幼會會士」)。一八五五年三月二十 五日,盧華矢 發聖願,是慈幼會歷史中首位發願的會士。阿拉索納底 (Alasonatti) 及方濟夏亦在一個月後發願。一八五六年十二月九日,鮑思高神父開始討論成立修會的事宜。

慈幼會的成立

 一八五八年三月,碧岳九世批准成立修會,並給予建議。經深思熟慮後,鮑思高神父在十二月九日擬定有關計劃的大綱,並分發給他的十九名 助手,讓他們思量及作出決定。一八五九年十二月十八日晚上,曾參加上次會議的助手只有兩名缺席,他們組成修會團體,宣發聖願。他們選出幹事 後,正式成為慈 幼會成員,團結一心,追求個人成聖,繼續服務青年,「尤其是極需要指導和教育的青年」(BM. VI, 182)。一八六二年五月十四日,共有二十二名會士宣發三年聖願,包括兩名輔理修士。鮑思高神父對他們說:「上主一直助佑我們,若祂繼續眷 顧,在二十五至 三十年內,將會有一千名會士。」一八六九年三月一日,慈幼會獲教會正式批准。若非有奇蹟相助,這事幾乎不可能實現。

 新會院亦在冷照 (Lanzo,一八六四)、該辣士可 (Cherasco,一八六九)、阿拉西奧 (Alassio, 一八六九)、瓦沙利切 (Valsalice,一八七二)、瓦利西亞 (Vallecrosia,一八七五)、法國尼斯 (Nizza,一八七五)、馬賽 (Marseilles) 及巴黎 (一八八四) 等地設立。根據奧弗雷 (Auffray) 所述,在一八六三年一月共有三十九名慈幼會會士,一八六四年一月共有六十一名,一八六五年共有八十名一八七四年共有三百二十名,於一八八八年 鮑思高神父逝 世時共有七百六十八名。

輔理修士

 鮑思高神父原本希望慈幼會會士只須穿著端莊的襯衣(在當時是反傳統的!)。最後,他讓「在俗慈幼會會士」(亦即輔理修士)如此實行, 他們是他「傑作」。他高瞻遠囑,期望他們不是傳統的在俗修士,而是與司鐸平起平坐的合作人、監督和管理人,只是不能執行聖職。鮑思高神父一生 有賴許多謙 卑、低調、忠信和慷慨的合作人協助,他們在傳教區也貢獻良多。當他逝世時,慈幼會有五分之一的成員屬於輔理修士。

母佑會的共同創辦人瑪沙利羅

 瑪利亞‧瑪沙利羅(參閱《生平》)於一九五一年六月二十五日由教宗碧岳十一世列入聖品。她於一八六四年十月八日與鮑思高神父相遇,共 同於一八七二年創立進教之佑孝女會(即母佑會),是教會內最多修女的修會,其前身為亞圭 (Acqui) 教區摩爾尼斯 (Mornese) 的「無原罪聖母孝女會」,指導神師為貝思諾神父 (Fr. Dominic Pestarino),而他後來也成為慈幼會會士。鮑思高神父期望她們成為生活的典範,表達他對聖母的敬愛,其中有許多修女伴隨慈幼會會士到 傳教區工作。

協進會

 鮑思高神父創立的第三個精神家庭就是慈幼協進會(The Pious Union of Salesian Cooperators),期望他們成為「慈幼會會士的合作人,服務本堂神父及主教,一起造福人群」,亦期望他們是在俗的慈幼會會士,按慈幼 會的精神生活 和工作。他們最初被視為「慈幼會會士的外援」,其後在一八七六年組成現時的第三會。他們是獻身的基督徒,在鮑聖逝世時人數達至八萬。

修會發展

 一八六三年,除了三間在杜林運作的青年中心外,鮑聖亦在市外的米拉貝祿蒙弗辣道(Mirabello Monferrato) 設立首間會院,其後遷至聖馬丁村 (Borgo San Martino)。他的青年中心、職業及農藝學校數目倍增。一八六四年,他在杜林開設冷照 (Lanzo) 學校。鮑思高神父曾到意大利各地,並到訪法國及西班牙,在當地建立和鞏固他的事業。他在各地備受歡迎,大家視他為施行奇蹟者和聖人。他的降福 醫治許多病 人,情景難以置信,但他全歸功於聖母。他充滿人情味,亦是屬於天主的人,既有人性才華,亦有超性天賦。他聖德昭著,吸引現代人。即使遭受部分 政府官員及教 會神長反對,鮑思高神父在杜林華道谷 (Valdocco)服務貧苦青年的工作逐漸制度化,成為國際性組織,目前已遍佈五大洲逾九十五個會省。

 一八八四年七月九日,鮑思高神父的修會獲得與贖主會(譯按:該會的使命為服務遭遺棄的貧苦者)同等的地位。他如此總結他經歷的考驗: 「若我早知道成立修會須經歷這麼多痛苦、疲累、反對及矛盾,或許我不會有勇氣開始。」(MB 17, 142)

 對於政府官員不斷的滋擾,鮑思高神父對神職修士賈烈勞說:「這些政府官員很想毀掉青年中心,但不會成功;他們須與更強大的那位交手, 童貞聖母將摧毀他們的計劃。」

傳教區

 雖然鮑思高神父需要各種援助,以鞏固新成立的修會,但出於傳教熱忱,他付出極大犧牲,在一八七五年十一月十一日派遣部分優秀的慈幼會 會士在賈烈勞神父領導下,到巴塔哥尼亞 (Patagonia) 及火地島 (Tierra del Fuego) 傳教。他們帶來極大的轉變,該區在一八八四年成為宗座監牧區。鮑思高神父深謀遠慮,所作的犧牲獲得豐厚的回報。在他逝世時,修會有五分之一的 成員在傳教區 服務。目前,慈幼會在南美洲共有二十四個會省、三位樞機及六十位慈幼會會士主教。

中介

 教宗領土淪陷後,意大利比薩 (Pisa) 的科西樞機 (Cardinal Corsi) 與帕爾馬 (Parma)、皮亞琴察 (Piacenza) 及瓜斯塔拉 (Guastalla) 等地的主教都被監禁或驅逐。法莫 (Fermo)的德安傑利斯樞機 (Cardinal DeAngelis) 遭逮補及押往杜林,安科納 (Ancona) 的安東納西樞機 (Cardinal Antonucci) 及耶西 (Jesi) 的莫里尼樞機 (Cardinal Morichini) 則被軟禁在家,另有八位主教受滋擾。在意大利南部,有七十位主教被監禁及撤職。當時瀰漫著反教宗情緒,歷時十多年,而鮑思高神父成為意大利政 府與教廷之間 的中介,獲雙方信任,促成委任過百名主教填補空缺。他亦無畏地與意大利復興運動 (Risorgimento) 的高層官員交涉,表現誠懇、謹慎及忠誠。西敏 (Westminster) 的曼寧樞機 (Cardinal Manning) 在教宗指示下,就教廷與意大利政府的關係諮詢鮑思高神父。一八六六年,鮑思高神父被領進總理里卡索利 (Ricasoli) 位於比提尼 (Pittini) 王宮的辦公室。他站在辦公室內,堅決定說:「閣下,請您明白鮑思高神父在祭台旁是神父,在告解室是神父,在他的男青年當中是神父,在杜林是神 父,在佛羅倫 斯是神父。他在貧苦者的家是神父,在國王的宮殿裡也是神父。」(BM VIII, 239) 教宗對安東尼利樞機 (Cardinal Antonelli) 說:「鮑思高神父作了偉大的工作,沒有一位樞機可比他幹得更好。他善用任何機會,表現出色。」(BM, 10, 225) 當安東尼利樞機被問及為何鮑思高神父沒有晉升為樞機時,他對若翰•羅里尼教授 (Prof. John Lorini) 說:「我們多次寫信給他,邀請他加入樞機團,但他總不接受。」(BM, 10. 243)

 鮑思高神父則說:「除了福音的政治外,天主教神父沒有其他政治活動。」他的政治是「教宗的政治,我們的天父的政治」。一八八七年十二 月二十三日,在他逝世前一個月,他告訴雅里達樞機 (Card. Alimonda):「我已請賈烈勞告訴教宗,所有慈幼會會士必會捍衛他。」(MB 18, 491)。他對卡沙萊的 (Casale) 費雷主教 (Ferre) 表示:「我的神子遵從教宗支持的理論,即使他是以個人哲學家、神學家或學者的身份支持。這不僅是為了對教宗表達敬愛,也是因為我感到這樣較為 穩妥。如此, 我不會犯錯,即使犯錯,亦雖錯猶榮。」(BM, XV, 369)效忠教宗是慈幼會神修的重要特色 ,僅次於敬禮聖體及童貞聖母。

聖母進教之佑大殿

 鮑思高神父除了設立慈幼會會院外,亦在一八五二年建造聖方濟沙雷氏聖堂,並在一八八二年建成聖史若望堂。一八四四年十月十二日,當青 年中心仍遷徙不定時,他夢見一處種滿玉米和馬鈴薯的田園,建有一座宏偉莊觀的聖堂。十八年後,他對神職修士保祿•歐培拉 (Paul Albera) 說:「我身無分文,但既然這是天主的意願,我們必須實行。」(MB 7, 334)

 一八六三年,他意外地獲得四千里拉,並以此購入該幅土地。一八六五年,大殿奠基。承建商嘉祿•蒲切底 (Charles Buzzetti) 是他的舊生。鮑思高神父把所有積蓄交給他,只有八個銅幣。然而,雖然困難重重和經費緊絀,但聖母顯發許多奇蹟,大殿終於建成,並在一八六八年 六月九日祝 聖,所需的建築成本為八十九萬里拉(相當於一九八六年的二十億)。鮑思高神父可確實說:「這座聖殿的每一塊石頭也是聖母的恩寵。」(MB 18, 388; 9, 201)「聖母為自己建造一座殿宇。」他對賈烈勞說:「至聖之母創立和支持我們的工作。」(M.B. 7, 334)

 儘管病弱疲憊,鮑思高神父仍遵從教宗良十三世的意願,同意在一八八O年建造羅馬耶穌聖心堂。一八八三年,他在一月至五月這四個月期間 到訪法國,四處奔走,為這座羅馬教堂籌募經費。耶穌聖心堂於一八八七年五月十四日祝聖。他還在杜林及瓦利西亞 (Vallecrosia)另外建造了兩座聖堂,亦在拉斯佩齊亞 (La Spezia)、尼斯及馬賽設立三間會院。他為了籌募這一千五百萬里拉(相當於一九八六的四十億)經費,身體越來越虛弱。一八八六年,他前往 西班牙,答應 在一座俯瞰巴塞隆納市的山上建造國家大殿。這座山風景優美,名為「我要給你」(Tibi Dabo)(譯按:魔鬼誘惑耶穌時,把他帶到一座山上,將世上的國度及榮華指給他看,對他說:「你你若俯伏朝拜我,我必把這一切交給你。」故 有此名。)他 承擔這任務,表示他對耶穌聖心的敬愛。

聖人的導師

 鮑思高神父啟發和培育了許多學生、合作人和聖人度聖善生活,他們包括瑪利亞‧瑪沙利羅、道明‧沙維豪、類斯‧雷鳴道、彌額爾‧盧華、 斐理伯‧李納德、瑪達肋納‧莫蘭諾、安德肋‧白德美、奧古斯多‧查托里斯基、潘德蘭等等,均獲列入聖品或正待列品。他亦與許多聖人合作,包括 若瑟賈發束、 若瑟‧高登倫哥、聖理納蒙利亞多 (St. Leonard Murialdo),真福真福路易斯•瓜內爾 (Bl. Guanella) 及真福類斯奧廖內 (Bl. Aloysius Orione)。到了今天,他的理想、精神和神恩仍鼓舞許多人完全獻身上主。

教育家

 鮑思高神父的主要工作是以聖方濟沙雷的精神為青年提供基督徒教育。他的「預防教育法」正顯示他的智慧,以及他在心理和超性方面的直 覺。「預防教育法」基於理智、信仰、仁愛、神工、勤領聖事、棄用體罰,並重視親切、有益及關愛的臨在。一八八四年,他在羅馬寄出一封九頁的信 函到杜林的青 年中心,概述他的教育法和神修。「我的教育法建基於愛德和敬愛天主」;「預防勝於治療,時刻保持溫良」。「男青年不僅需要獲得關愛,亦須知道 自己被愛。這 裡是個家,我們像家人般生活。應盡量付出時間陪伴男青年。」「對待充滿怨恨的青年,應更加溫良。父母把孩子送來受教,而天主把他們送來,是讓 我們照顧他們 的靈魂。」

 鮑聖亦稱為「青年的使徒」、「慈父及青年良友」。他在轄下的青年中心和學校運用他的教育法,培育青年為虔誠的基督徒和良好公民。據 稱,他一生教育了三萬名青年,其中有些成為主教、偉大的傳教士先驅、司鐸、聖人。他亦是勇敢的聖體使徒,勤領聖體,提倡恭敬瑪利亞進教之佑, 她亦稱為鮑思 高的聖母 (Don Bosco’s Madonna)。聖母在他生命中所行的事及他以聖母之名所行的奇蹟,不勝枚舉。他亦發了許多神夢,約有一百五十九個。

 當時很少人注意傳媒的影響力,但這位比哀蒙聖人明白傳媒的重要,且盡力推行傳媒工作。一八八三年,他對碧岳十一世說:「鮑思高神父希 望成為傳媒工作的先鋒。」

V. 最後階段

與世長辭

 一八八四年三月二十五日,蒙彼利埃大學 (University of Montpellier) 的孔巴醫生 (Dr. Chambal) 為鮑思高神父進行詳細的身體檢查,並診斷說:「鮑思高神父,你是積勞成疾,好比一件穿得太多次的衣服,不管是平日也好,或是慶節也好,都穿在 身上。如果還 要保存它,唯一的方法就是把它藏在衣櫥內。我的意思是,你最需要的藥物就是好好休息。」鮑思高神父說:「醫生,這是我唯一無法吃的藥。」

 這位青年的聖人確實是心力交瘁。一八八七年十二月十一日,他最後一次舉行感恩祭,在二十日晚上臥病在床。一八八八年一月十五日,他感 到呼吸困難,並開玩笑說:「請找個懂得修理風箱的人,讓他來修理我一下。」一月三十日,他說:「願你的聖意奉行。」在早上四時四十五分,當聖 母進教之佑大 殿的三鐘經鐘聲響起時,鮑思高神父與世長辭,享年七十二歲五個月十四日。他的遺體於二月六日下葬於瓦沙利切 (Valsalice) 會院。

聖德昭著

 一八八三年五月二十九日發行的《世界報》(Le Monde) 論及鮑思高神父說:「許多人追隨他,渴望見他一面,碰碰他的衣服,因為感到他散發特殊的聖德芬芳。」

 雅里達樞機稱鮑思高神父為「本世紀的聖化者」,教宗碧岳九世更稱他為「意大利的珍寶」。碧岳九世與女伯爵馬蒂爾德 (Countess Matilde) 談話時提起鮑聖,問她說:「你見過意大利的珍寶嗎?」一八六七年,內政部長拉達濟說:「我認為鮑思高神父或許是本世紀最偉大的奇蹟。」 (MB, 8,795) 他的妻子瑪利亞萊蒂希亞 (Princess Maria Letizia) 探訪鮑聖後,稱他為「世紀奇蹟」(MB, 8. 797) 一八八一年月十六日,良十三世對部分慈幼會會士說:「鮑思高神父是位聖者。」比利奧樞機 (Cardinal Bilio) 說:「沒有人在世時獲列入聖品,但鮑思高神父是位活生生的聖人。」當時,教宗微笑補充說:「確是對的,鮑思高神父確是聖人。」(MB XV, 759-760) 鮑思高神父的雕像在聖伯多祿大殿隆重揭幕,放置於專屬修會創辦人聖像的聖龕。這尊重二十二噸、高5.87米的意大利大理石雕像由帕切利樞機 (Card Pacelli)祝聖。聖像兩旁是道明•沙維豪及澤菲林‧拿蒙古拉的雕像,象徵鮑聖的青年使徒工作及傳教工作 (MB19, 363)。一九五九年,教宗若望二十三世到辛納西提 (Cinecitta) 向鮑聖的遺體致敬。他在講道時高呼:「鮑思高神父,全世界景仰你,全世界敬愛你。」

光榮列品

 鮑思高神父的葬禮結束後不足二十四小時,盧華神父及他的議會已開始商討是否可能盡快展開列真福的程序。教區的調查工作於一八九O年六 月四日開始,並於一八九七年四月一日完成。一九O四年九月三日,於第十屆全會代表大會舉行期間,鮑思高神父的墳墓首次開啟,杜林的里基米樞機 (Card Richelmy) 當時亦在場,發現他的遺體仍然完好。教宗碧岳十世在羅馬頒令就鮑思高神父與羅倫斯嘉斯塔迪總主教 (Lawrence Gastaldi) 歷時十載的爭議進行調查。調查程序順利結束後,若望鮑思高獲教宗碧岳十世列入可敬品,其後於一九二九年六月二日獲碧岳十一世列入真福。碧岳十 一世仍為拉提 蒙席時 (Mgr Ratti) 時,曾到青年中心作客,而碧岳十世仍為薩爾托蒙席 (Mgr. Sarto) 時亦然。教宗在榮列聖品的儀式上說:「聖多瑪斯亞圭納 (St. Thomas Aquinas) 的封聖詔書指出,《神學大全》的每篇文章都是一個奇蹟。現在我們可以說,鮑思高神父一生的每一年、每一刻都是個奇蹟,而且是一連串的奇蹟。」 (BM X, 1) 一九三四年四月一日復活主日,鮑思高神父獲這位教宗列入聖品。一九四六年,教宗碧岳十二世稱他為「公教刊物的主保」。若望保祿二世宣告他為 「青年的慈父與 導師」。

鮑思高神父天上的媽媽

 「當你出生的時候,我將你奉獻了給至聖童貞。你才開始讀書,我便教你熱心恭敬聖母。現在我囑咐你,要完全屬於她,愛那些恭敬聖母的同 學。如果你將來升了神父,常要宣揚聖母的敬禮。」這番說話是他媽媽瑪加利大在一八三五年十月三十日。當若望.鮑思高要起程進入修院之前對他的 囑咐,而鮑思 高也確實一生忠實地實行了。

 鮑思高神父一生也真的與聖母瑪利亞結下了不解之緣,他是在聖母升天大瞻禮的翌日出生的,而他在世的母親也自一開始就將他獻給了天上的 母親,所以他自出生便已是屬於瑪利亞的了,而他自小也就很熱心恭敬聖母。在他九歲的奇夢中,耶穌再一次將他交託給瑪利亞,讓他在瑪利亞的教導 下變得謙遜、 堅強和壯健以履行他日後的使命。在他進了修院之後,他按照媽媽瑪加利大的教導只與那些敬愛聖母,虔誠而勤學的同學來往。在他晉鐸之後,刻意到 憂苦之慰聖母 堂獻祭,以感謝偉大的童貞聖母瑪利亞,向她的天主聖子耶穌為他所求得的無數恩典 (母院史,107頁)。一八四一年十二月八日聖母始胎無染原罪節日上,他遇見了祿茂.夏來理,就以一篇聖母經開始了他慶禮院的工作。

 在他的一生中,他對聖母的敬禮從未疏忽,曾先後推動過聖母聖心的敬禮和七苦聖母的敬禮;而最為他喜愛的可算是無染原罪聖母的敬禮。一 八五四年教宗庇護九世宣佈聖母始胎無染原罪為信道,這更加強了鮑思高神父對無原罪聖母的特敬,並以此鼓勵青年人投奔聖母以保存潔德。

 其後由於教會面對現世政權的挑戰,教宗國的問題困擾著整個教會,鮑思高神父開始將注意力轉到「進教之佑」聖母的稱號上,以祈求聖母瑪 利亞保護整個教會。而一八六八年建成的聖殿也以進教之佑聖母作為主保;這大殿正祭台上的壁畫正是按照他的構思而畫成的,反映了他對聖母瑪利亞 作為教友之助 佑的了解。

 在鮑思高神父最後的日子裏,他應費列底神父的要求留下幾句說話給協進會會員時,他寫道:「聖母瑪利亞,求妳轉求耶穌,賞賜我們身體健 康,只要對靈魂有益;也求妳使我們能確保永生的救恩。」在他彌留時,他仍呼喚:「快來!快來救救這些青年吧! ……聖母瑪利亞!救救他們吧!…… 母親啊!母親啊!」可見鮑思高神父至死對聖母的依賴都沒有改變。作為鮑思高神父的神子,我們實在也應該效法他這份對聖母的依賴,將自己完全交 托於瑪利亞的 手中讓她帶領,並且努力宣揚對聖母的敬禮。

Eucharist quotes (1/31 St. John Bosco)

Do you want the Lord to give you many graces? Visit Him often. Do you want Him to give you few graces? Visit Him rarely. Do you want the devil to attack you? Visit Jesus rarely in the Blessed Sacrament. Do you want him to flee from you? Visit Jesus often!

Take refuge often at the feet of Jesus...My dear ones, the Visit to the Blessed Sacrament is an extremely necessary way to conquer the devil. Therefore, go often to visit Jesus and the devil will not come out victorious against you.

Trust all things to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and to Mary Help of Christians and you will see what miracles are.

I beg you to recommend to everyone, first, adoration of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and then reverence for most holy Mary.

Never omit the daily visit to the Most Blessed Sacrament, be it ever so brief. It is enough if it be constant.

Night and day Jesus awaits us...Like a most tender mother, He opens His arms to us...He is there to draw us to Himself and lead us to paradise. Let us go visit Jesus often.

There are two things the devil is deadly afraid of: fervent Communions and frequent visits to the Blessed Sacrament.

Jesus could have limited his presence only to the celebration of Mass, but no! He wanted to make a permanent dwelling among us. Night and day he awaits us and offers himself to us at all times. Like a most tender mother, he opens his arms to us. He is there generously to give us his gifts. He is there to draw us to him and lead us to paradise with him. Oh! Let us go visit him often.

We envy the shepherds who went to visit the grotto of Bethlehem to see Him, kissed His little hand, and offered Him their gifts. “Lucky shepherds!” we exclaim. And yet there is no reason to envy them, for their fortune is ours, too. The same Jesus they visited in the grotto is in our tabernacle. The only difference is that the shepherds saw Him with the eyes of the body, whereas we see Him with the eyes of faith. Nothing will please Him more than our frequent visits to Him.

Go to confession and communion as often as your confessor allows, and when you can, visit Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.

Go to the foot of the tabernacle and say one ‘Our Father’, ‘Hail Mary’, and ‘Glory Be’ when you can’t do anymore. This is enough to strengthen you against temptations. If someone has faith, makes visits to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, and makes his daily meditation, I tell you, it will be impossible for him to sin.

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一月31日:聖方濟 各•沙勿 略•白英奇St. Francis Xavier Bianchi

 公元一七四三年,聖方濟各•白英奇生於意大利西西里王國,自幼立志修道,但他父親堅決反對。聖人內心深感苦悶,不知何去何從。他求教 於聖亞豐索利高烈,認為自己確有天主聖召,就擺脫一切困難,毅然進入巴爾納伯 公元一七四三年,聖方濟各•修會。他對文學科學造詣極深,聖德 尤為出眾。晉 鐸後不久,即獲聽告解的特權,在當時意大利尚屬罕見。他聽告解時,對信友循循善導,告解亭前常常擠得水泄不通。他積勞成疾,身體萎弱不堪,帶 病為信友服 務。

 那不勒斯教難期內,修院封閉,修士星散,聖人其時雙腿腫脹,疼痛難忍,步履維艱,仇教者特准他留在院內。修院財政困難,無法償債,經 聖人祈禱後,櫃內錢幣突然增多,恰夠償債所需。這樣的靈跡,先後發生了兩次。有一次著名的維蘇威火山突然爆發,火焰衝天,附近居民,大禍臨 頭。聖人親往山 上,念經默禱,火焰立即熄滅。

 聖人勸化的信友中,有一位是聖女瑪利亞•方濟各。聖女生前曾對白英奇說過:我將來在你死期前三日來通知你。公元一八一五年一月二十八 日,聖女果然顯現給他。三日後,聖人即離世升天,時在一八一五年一月三十一日。

 一九五一年列聖品。