日历

九月纪念的圣人

9月3日:圣额我略一世(教 宗 圣师)(纪念) St. Gregory the Great

「众仆之仆」

 圣额我略一世,通常称为「大额我略」,因为他在事业丶功德丶学问方面,都出人头地。

 圣额我略就任教宗的时代,罗马内忧外患交迫,疮痍满目,民不聊生。

 额我略的家庭,是罗马的元老,热心敬主。在额我略以前,这一家已出过两位教宗,就是亚格比多一世和斐理士三世。

 额我略青年时受过良好的教育,学业完成後,在政府机关供职。此时,隆巴族人一再攻袭义大利,罗马局势危急,朝不保夕。 额我略那时年仅三十岁,担任着罗马总督的职任,他勤敏尽职,深得市民的爱载。

 可是额我略知道自己应献身从事更有价值的工作,为天主服务。 那时,他是罗马首富之一,将全部家产捐作善举,将自己的住屋改为修院,委托一位修士管理,这个修院奉圣安德肋为主保。他开始过隐修生活。

 在这段隐居的时期,额我略圣德日进,可是他因守斋过严,竟染胃病,终身常为病魔折磨。

 当然,像额我略这样才德双全的人才,决不能长期埋没着。 不久,教会当局授与他副祭的品位,并派他担任驻东罗马帝国大使。额我略因不读希腊文,所以在君士坦丁堡任大使的时期,与外界接触较少。 他到君土坦丁堡上任时,带了圣安德肋修院几位修士同来。他与这些修土仍和过去一样,过着修会的生活。

 额我略在君士坦丁堡与圣利达结交,两人一见如故,成为莫逆知友。额我略按利达的要求,着手编写约伯传注释。

 西元五八六年,教宗召额我略回罗马,他当选圣安德肋修院院长。

 某日,额我略在街道散步,看见三个金发英俊少年,标价出售为奴。 额我略问起这几位不幸的少年原籍何处,人们对他说:「那是盎格鲁人。」额我略对他们深表同情; 同时,他获悉盎格鲁人未获信德真光,决定偕同几位修士往英国传教。 可是罗马市民听说他们启程上路的消息後,联名要求教会当局挽留额我略,另派别人前去。额我略无奈,只好打消往英国传教的计划。

 「额我略三十台炼灵弥撒」的来历,也与额我略任院长的这段时期有关。 额我略的修院里,有一个修士,身患重病,临终前透露自己有金币三枚隐藏在某处,这与修士禁止有私产的会规,显然有抵触。 那修士死後,按会规不准葬在修士的公墓,另在别处挖了一个坟穴,将棺柩与三枚金币一同埋葬。 可是额我略认为这修士临死前已忏悔自己的罪,就命同院修士为亡者一连三十天献弥撒,求上主赐他早日脱离炼狱。 到了三十天,亡者显现给他的胞弟,报告自己死後在炼狱受罚,如今罪罚已满,升天享福。

 西元五九O年,罗马发生瘟疫,教宗不幸染病身亡,众人一致公推额我略继任。 为了求上主消灭疫病,额我略下令让全城信友,分别由城内七圣堂出发,列队到圣玛利亚大堂集合,一连三日,在全城游行,高唱圣歌。 当游行群众列队经过各道路时,街头倒毙的病人,到处都是。可是自游行结束後,疫病大减,不久完全消灭,居民额手相庆。

 圣额我略喜爱过幽静的隐修生活。他当选教宗後,一再谦让,并准备秘密出走。 但是他的计划被众人及时发觉,大家强拥他往圣伯多禄大堂,正式加冕,就任了教会最高元首的职位。

 拉温那总主教听说额我略当选教宗後谦让的消息,修书婉言相劝,劝他应以教会利益为重。 额我略特地撰述了《神牧论》—书,作为答复。在这本书内,额我略指出:主教的主要性质是作信友灵魂的良医,应致力宣传圣教,及维持教会纪律。 这本书—发表,洛阳纸贵,传诵一时。玛力斯皇帝请安提阿总主教译成希腊文字。 圣奥斯定将这本书带往英国,三百年後,由亚斐力王译成本国文字。 查理曼日大帝时代的各教务会议,规定主教均应熟读该书;举行主教祝圣典礼时,应将这本书授与新主教。 当时受人重视,由此可见一斑。圣额我略指示的各项职责,西方教会神职人员均奉为圭臬。

 额我略接任教宗职位後,立即着手整顿教会纪律。他将傲慢骄横的大副祭洛伦 (当时罗马权势最大的人) 撤职,教廷财政事务,委专人办理。追思弥撒中,副祭不可唱经,以免人们专为欣赏副祭的歌喉,而选派他们唱经。

 额我略对讲道的职务,异常重视。他常在弥撒中讲道,讲道的题材,都是以本日福音经为主。

 额我略在写信给教廷财产管理人员的时候,常叮嘱他们善待佃农下属;凡有急需者,应该贷借金钱给他们,不可吝啬。 他的佃农都生活优裕,称赞他待人宽大。 额我略死後,人们发觉教廷的公库,空空如也,分文无存,那是因为他生前利用教廷的金钱举办大规模的救济事业,将千千万万的灾民,从死神手中抢回。

 额我略用大量金钱,将俘虏从隆巴族人手中赎回,并写信叮嘱主教们将教堂的金属器皿熔化,变价充赎回俘虏之用。

 某年,罗马麦田歉收,额我略下令购集大量粮食,存储仓内,将全城贫民,造了名册,按时分发赈灾粮。

 额我略对犹太人给予特别的照顾。他严禁任何人压迫犹太人或将犹太会堂充公。 他晓谕众人善待犹太人,不可歧视。有一次,撒狄尼岛犹太人向他申诉,犹太会堂被当地人士霸占,他立即下令发还了会堂。

 当时,隆巴族骚扰义大利,烽烟遍地,民不聊生。额我略领导人民,保卫罗马。五九三年隆巴族大规模进攻,罗马人心惶惶,秩序大乱。 额我略挺身而出,单身往见隆巴王劝他撤兵。隆巴王为教宗的伟大人格所感动,立即撤了兵,罗马免遭蹂躏。

 额我略虽日理万机,仍能忙中偷闲,撰述圣书。五九三年,他的《对话》正式问世,那是中古时代最着名的圣教书籍之一。

 额我略很注意向外教民族传教的事业。他对英国的传教工作,更表示异常的关注。 在他任教宗的时代,对英国展开的传教工作,获致辉煌的成就,这不能不归功额我略的领导有方,同时也应归功於英国民族与天主圣宠合作的精神。

 当时英国人民渴望领受福音的真光,由於缺乏传教人员,额我略特在他自己一度任院长的那座圣安德肋修院中,遴选四十位修士, 去英国传教,这批传教人员的领导人,是圣奥斯定。

 东罗马帝国对义大利人民横征暴敛,额我略主持公义,表示严正的抗议。 同时,由於东罗马皇帝还禁止军人弃俗修道,额我略也对这个禁令提出抗议。

 额我略为人谦逊,他虽是教会的最高领袖,却自称是天主「诸仆之仆」,这个称谓自他而始,後世教宗袭用至今。

 额我略常患有胃病和风湿病,可是他不顾身体多病,力疾从公,一天也不休息。 十三年的教宗生涯,严重地影响了他的健康,他却始终不渝地处理公事,直至最後一分锺,鞠躬尽瘁,死而後已。 临死前,他的最後一件事是送一件厚大衣给一位贫苦的主教。

 额我略一生的事迹,我们无法一一详述。其中重要的是:编撰圣歌集,重整圣教音乐,编写着名圣歌多首。 他是拉丁教会的第四位圣师,若干重要教义,都经过他详细阐述,确定意义。同时他也是一位着名的讲道家丶伦理学家。 罗马教廷的地位,由於他的雄才善辩,而得到完全的巩固。所以圣教会称他为「大额我略」以示尊敬之意。

St. Gregory the Great

Early Church Father and Doctor of the Church

Pope Saint Gregory I, commonly known as St. Gregory the Great, was one of the most fascinating of early Church leaders. Son of a Roman Senator, Saint Gregory was born in Rome around 540AD and, following his dad's footsteps, embarked upon a political career. He rose through the ranks of civil service and eventually became Prefect (mayor) of the city of Rome. At that point, Gregory discerned a call to deeper life with God so promptly gave away his wealth to the poor and entered the monastery of St. Andrew (ca. 574) where he ultimately became abbot (585). The Pope, recognizing his talent, named him as one of the seven deacons of Rome and then sent him on a diplomatic mission as papal legate to the imperial city of Constantinople where he remained for five years. Upon the death of the pope in 590, St. Gregory was elected to succeed him, the first monk ever elected as the Successor of Peter.

This man who wanted nothing else but to be a simple monk had to undergo a profound interior struggle before accepting this election as the will of God. Immediately he set to work putting in order the affairs of a Church and society in chaos. Like his predecessor Pope Leo the Great, he negotiated a "separate peace" with the invading barbarians, in this case the Lombards (592-3). In light of the powerlessness of the Byzantine emperor in the West, he took over civic as well as spiritual leadership of Italy, appointing governors of the various Italian cities. He, who had spent his own wealth to relieve the suffering of the poor, did much the same with the resources of the church. He insisted on Papal primacy, and took the initiative in evangelization, sending monks from his former monastery led by Augustine to convert the Angles of Britain.

His abundant writings are more practical and spiritual than doctrinal or theoretical. His "Liber Regulae Pastoralis" (592 ca) sets the standard of what a bishop should be. His "Dialogues" recounts the life of his master, St. Benedict, and other saints of the period. His Moralia in Job is a commentary on the book of Job according to the literal, moral, and spiritual senses of Scripture. Very devoted to the liturgy, Gregory promoted sacred music and to this day the plainsong that comes down to us from this era is known as "Gregorian Chant." Gregory, who died in 604 AD, is known as one of the four greatest Latin-speaking Fathers and Doctors of the Church. He is one of the few men in the history of the Church whose name is customarily followed by "the Great." His liturgical memorial is on September 3, the anniversary of his consecration as bishop of Rome and successor of St. Peter. His favorite title for this exalted office was "servant of the servants of God." 

9月4日:圣女洛沙利亚St. Rosalia

 圣女洛沙利亚青年时离家,独居於高希纳山岩穴隐修,後迁居彼肋利诺山(在今巴肋莫城附近),公元一一六○年在岩穴里去世。公元一六二 四年,巴肋莫 城发生疫疠,圣女显现给一个病人她遗体所在处,於是大家到山上去访查,果在岩穴中寻获圣女的遗骨及一尊苦像丶一具银十字架丶一串念珠,城中居民以隆重的仪 式将圣女的遗骸迎回城中,疫病便奇迹般立即消除。为感谢圣女的庇佑,巴肋莫城居民在发现圣骸的岩穴所在地,造了一座圣堂,并以圣女洛沙利亚为该城的主保。

9月4日:圣格时白(主教) St. Cuthbert

 圣格时白原籍不详,幼年时在各项游戏运动方面,均较别的孩童为优。某日,格时白正和一群孩童游戏时,一个孩童突然高呼道:「格时白, 你这样一天到 晚嬉戏,浪费时间太可惜了。天主特选了你,将来做司铎或主教,为教会作一番事业。」格时白听了非常感动。可是格时白弃俗修道的时机尚未成熟。他曾一度加入 军队,当他往梅罗修院申请入院修道时,身穿戎装,骑着战马,完全是赳赳武夫的打扮。那时梅罗长一见格时白就对左右的人说:「这一位是天主的仆人。」

 公元六六○年,格时白被派往分院服务。一个隆冬的早晨,他见到一个陌生的旅客坐在客厅中,格时白就取水给旅客洗手足,并准备点心,那 旅客礼貌地 说:「不要太客气,我就要走了。」格时白挽留他,当格时白到厨房端了点心回到大厅,客人已不知所踪,桌上放着三枚洁白的大面包。推门一看,白雪遍地,雪上 一点足迹也没有。

 公元六八五年复活节,格时白祝圣为主教。就任主教後,生活与前一般无二,到处讲道训人,施赈济贫,显灵迹治愈病人。格时白工作繁剧, 积劳成疾。在 他巡视加里斯时,对门徒赫耳伯说:「今後在世上不会再相见了。可是我们两人将於同日逝世。」公元六八六年圣诞节,在举行完圣诞弥撒後?A退居在法纳。临终 时,梅里弗院长问他有什麽遗训,格时白说:「你们务须一心一德,待信友务须和蔼可亲,不可自视较高,勤读圣书,忠守会规。」

 有两本古版的福音经书与圣格时白有一段渊源。一本是第八世纪的手抄福音经,封面由圣皮弗礼描绘。这本福音曾供在圣格时白的墓上,後来 修士们带去了 爱尔兰传教,不慎在中途落入海中,但不久却奇迹的飘回上,一点也没有损坏,现在保存於英国博物院。另一本是第七世纪的若望福音,供在圣格时白的墓中,现由 斯敦赫学院保存。

9月5日:真福德兰修女Bl Mother Teresa of Calcutta

 1910年8月26日-1997年9月5日

 真福德兰修女,按她所说:「论血统,我是亚尔巴尼亚人;论国籍,我是印度人;论信仰,我是天主教修女;论召叫,我属於世界;论我的心,我完全属耶稣圣 心。」

 她於1910年生於亚尔巴尼亚,原名Gonxha Agnes Bojaxhiu,是家中么女。自她领圣体後,便充满爱人灵的心火。八岁时,父亲突然逝世,母亲以信德与爱心养育孩子,坚定了Gonxha的性格和圣召; Gonxha又得到本堂(圣心堂)司铎的悉心栽培。 

 1928年,Gonxha离家修道,加入童贞圣玛利亚修女会,取名德兰。德兰修女往印度传教;1929年抵达加尔各答,在学校任教 师;1937年矢发永 愿,正如她所说的:她成为了耶稣永远的净配;1944年德兰修女更是一所学校的校长,她的修道生活,充满喜乐,她的事奉,备受赏识。但在1946年9月, 她乘火车前往参加周年退省途中,受到很深的感召;按她所说是「召叫中的召叫」。她说她永远不能解释的,就是耶稣在十字架上对「爱情」和「人灵」的「渴」, 占据着她的心;耶稣的「渴」,遂成为了她生命的动力。她意味到耶稣召叫她作「光」,以耶稣的爱照耀众灵魂,特别去服侍被遗弃的穷人,为「穷人中的穷人」服 务,。经过两年多的考验和分辨,德兰修女受感召要成立一个新的修会。在1948年,她获得批准,首次改穿蓝白印度服作会衣,离开童贞圣玛利亚修女会,走进 穷人的世界。

 德兰修女开始收容被遗弃的临终者丶露宿者丶病者丶被遗弃的妇女,以及满身疮疥的穷苦儿童等等。每天弥撒後,德兰修女手持念珠,在「被 遗弃者丶被鄙视者丶 没有人照顾者」身上服侍基督。渐渐,她的学生,她的朋友,以及仰慕者,都纷纷加入这个新的修道团体。在1950年,加尔各答总教区正式确认了德兰修女创立 的仁爱传教女修会。

 德兰修女随後亦派遣修女往印度各地,且於1965年,得教宗保禄六世称许,派遣仁爱会修女往各大洲,为「穷人中的穷人」服务。 1980年以後,德兰修女 在大部分共产国家,都建立了团体,为在穷人身上的基督服务。德兰修女本人亦多次访问香港;她的修会(仁爱传教女修会),也在香港服务和作见证。

 1963年,德兰修女成立了仁爱传教兄弟修会;1976年及1979年,先後成立了默观的修女及修士团体;1984年成立仁爱司铎传 教会;她又让平信徒 加盟成为仁爱会之友,後来,发展成为仁爱平信徒传教会。1981年,德兰修女开始基督圣体运动,为司铎提供她所说的「成圣小径」,去分享她的神恩和精神。

 1979年,德兰修女为「天主的光荣」,以「穷人的名义」接受诺贝尔和平奖。她发表了「维护生命」和「反对堕胎」的演说。

 1997年9月5日,德兰修女安逝於加尔各答。  在她去世後,人们从她遗下的文稿中,才得知她经历了多年的「心灵黑夜」;这经年的「心灵黑夜」,使她更「渴」求天主的爱,且更深感受到「被遗弃者」的伤 痛。这「黑夜」也使她奥妙地分享了基督在十字架上的「渴」,渴求「爱情」和「人灵」,且「爱」到受伤。

“By blood, I am Albanian. By citizenship, an Indian. By faith, I am a Catholic nun. As to my calling, I belong to the world. As to my heart, I belong entirely to the Heart of Jesus. ”Small of stature, rocklike in faith, Mother Teresa of Calcutta was entrusted with the mission of proclaiming God’s thirsting love for humanity, especially for the poorest of the poor. “God still loves the world and He sends you and me to be His love and His compassion to the poor.” She was a soul filled with the light of Christ, on fire with love for Him and burning with one desire: “to quench His thirst for love and for souls.” 

This luminous messenger of God’s love was born on 26 August 1910 in Skopje, a city situated at the crossroads of Balkan history. The youngest of the children born to Nikola and Drane Bojaxhiu, she was baptized Gonxha Agnes, received her First Communion at the age of five and a half and was confirmed in November 1916. From the day of her First Holy Communion, a love for souls was within her. Her father’s sudden death when Gonxha was about eight years old left in the family in financial straits. Drane raised her children firmly and lovingly, greatly influencing her daughter’s character and vocation. Gonxha’s religious formation was further assisted by the vibrant Jesuit parish of the Sacred Heart in which she was much involved. 

At the age of eighteen, moved by a desire to become a missionary, Gonxha left her home in September 1928 to join the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, known as the Sisters of Loreto, in Ireland. There she received the name Sister Mary Teresa after St. Thérèse of Lisieux. In December, she departed for India, arriving in Calcutta on 6 January 1929. After making her First Profession of Vows in May 1931, Sister Teresa was assigned to the Loreto Entally community in Calcutta and taught at St. Mary’s School for girls. On 24 May 1937, Sister Teresa made her Final Profession of Vows, becoming, as she said, the “spouse of Jesus” for “all eternity.” From that time on she was called Mother Teresa. She continued teaching at St. Mary’s and in 1944 became the school’s principal. A person of profound prayer and deep love for her religious sisters and her students, Mother Teresa’s twenty years in Loreto were filled with profound happiness. Noted for her charity, unselfishness and courage, her capacity for hard work and a natural talent for organization, she lived out her consecration to Jesus, in the midst of her companions, with fidelity and joy. 

On 10 September 1946 during the train ride from Calcutta to Darjeeling for her annual retreat, Mother Teresa received her “inspiration,” her “call within a call.” On that day, in a way she would never explain, Jesus’ thirst for love and for souls took hold of her heart and the desire to satiate His thirst became the driving force of her life. Over the course of the next weeks and months, by means of interior locutions and visions, Jesus revealed to her the desire of His heart for “victims of love” who would “radiate His love on souls.” “Come be My light,” He begged her. “I cannot go alone.” He revealed His pain at the neglect of the poor, His sorrow at their ignorance of Him and His longing for their love. He asked Mother Teresa to establish a religious community, Missionaries of Charity, dedicated to the service of the poorest of the poor. Nearly two years of testing and discernment passed before Mother Teresa received permission to begin. On August 17, 1948, she dressed for the first time in a white, blue-bordered sari and passed through the gates of her beloved Loreto convent to enter the world of the poor. 

After a short course with the Medical Mission Sisters in Patna, Mother Teresa returned to Calcutta and found temporary lodging with the Little Sisters of the Poor. On 21 December she went for the first time to the slums. She visited families, washed the sores of some children, cared for an old man lying sick on the road and nursed a woman dying of hunger and TB. She started each day in communion with Jesus in the Eucharist and then went out, rosary in her hand, to find and serve Him in “the unwanted, the unloved, the uncared for.” After some months, she was joined, one by one, by her former students. 

On 7 October 1950 the new congregation of the Missionaries of Charity was officially established in the Archdiocese of Calcutta. By the early 1960s, Mother Teresa began to send her Sisters to other parts of India. The Decree of Praise granted to the Congregation by Pope Paul VI in February 1965 encouraged her to open a house in Venezuela. It was soon followed by foundations in Rome and Tanzania and, eventually, on every continent. Starting in 1980 and continuing through the 1990s, Mother Teresa opened houses in almost all of the communist countries, including the former Soviet Union, Albania and Cuba. 

In order to respond better to both the physical and spiritual needs of the poor, Mother Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity Brothers in 1963, in 1976 the contemplative branch of the Sisters, in 1979 the Contemplative Brothers, and in 1984 the Missionaries of Charity Fathers. Yet her inspiration was not limited to those with religious vocations. She formed the Co-Workers of Mother Teresa and the Sick and Suffering Co-Workers, people of many faiths and nationalities with whom she shared her spirit of prayer, simplicity, sacrifice and her apostolate of humble works of love. This spirit later inspired the Lay Missionaries of Charity. In answer to the requests of many priests, in 1981 Mother Teresa also began the Corpus Christi Movement for Priests as a “little way of holiness” for those who desire to share in her charism and spirit. 

During the years of rapid growth the world began to turn its eyes towards Mother Teresa and the work she had started. Numerous awards, beginning with the Indian Padmashri Award in 1962 and notably the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979, honored her work, while an increasingly interested media began to follow her activities. She received both prizes and attention “for the glory of God and in the name of the poor.” 

The whole of Mother Teresa’s life and labor bore witness to the joy of loving, the greatness and dignity of every human person, the value of little things done faithfully and with love, and the surpassing worth of friendship with God. But there was another heroic side of this great woman that was revealed only after her death. Hidden from all eyes, hidden even from those closest to her, was her interior life marked by an experience of a deep, painful and abiding feeling of being separated from God, even rejected by Him, along with an ever-increasing longing for His love. She called her inner experience, “the darkness.” The “painful night” of her soul, which began around the time she started her work for the poor and continued to the end of her life, led Mother Teresa to an ever more profound union with God. Through the darkness she mystically participated in the thirst of Jesus, in His painful and burning longing for love, and she shared in the interior desolation of the poor. 

During the last years of her life, despite increasingly severe health problems, Mother Teresa continued to govern her Society and respond to the needs of the poor and the Church. By 1997, Mother Teresa’s Sisters numbered nearly 4,000 members and were established in 610 foundations in 123 countries of the world. In March 1997 she blessed her newly-elected successor as Superior General of the Missionaries of Charity and then made one more trip abroad. After meeting Pope John Paul II for the last time, she returned to Calcutta and spent her final weeks receiving visitors and instructing her Sisters. On 5 September Mother Teresa’s earthly life came to an end. She was given the honour of a state funeral by the Government of India and her body was buried in the Mother House of the Missionaries of Charity. Her tomb quickly became a place of pilgrimage and prayer for people of all faiths, rich and poor alike. Mother Teresa left a testament of unshakable faith, invincible hope and extraordinary charity. Her response to Jesus’ plea, “Come be My light,” made her a Missionary of Charity, a “mother to the poor,” a symbol of compassion to the world, and a living witness to the thirsting love of God. 

Less than two years after her death, in view of Mother Teresa’s widespread reputation of holiness and the favors being reported, Pope John Paul II permitted the opening of her Cause of Canonization. He approved the decrees of her heroic virtues and miracles on December 2002 and beatified her on Oct 19 2003.

Eucharist quotes (9/5 Bl. Mother Teresa)

 领圣体後,真福德兰修女总会长时间地虔诚祈祷  

 每天清晨,真福德兰修女都同我们一起在圣体前祈祷丶默想至少两个小时。下午的时候,接着朝拜圣体。这些灵修生活,给了她在穷人的身上 认识丶热爱和服务耶 稣的光明与力量。(尼尔马拉修女) 

9月8日:圣母诞辰(庆日)

 圣教会对圣人通常是「庆死不庆生」。只有两位圣人我们庆祝他们的诞生,第一是圣母诞辰,第二是洗者若翰瞻礼。

 圣洗者若翰在母胎第六个月才获原罪的赦免。至於圣母,在始胎时已无染原罪,所以在她诞生时,已成为受造物中最纯洁且最神圣的。

圣母诞辰奉献瞻礼诵〔前教宗若望保禄二世亲撰〕

 真福童贞玛利亚,妳的诞生使我们充满欢乐。在妳的诞辰,我们看到救恩曙光的辉耀,因为妳带了义德的太阳—主基督。妳是世界救主的母 亲,妳是教会之 母,求妳给予我们援手,俾我们能在生活中找到基督。至洁无瑕的童贞,求妳指引我们的步履,远离罪恶与死亡的阴影,踏上正道,以获得妳圣子的光荣,以获得妳 圣子的真光,在圣神内与圣父修和,并藉着教会的服务不断与天主修和。我们现在联同普世信友,恳切向妳祈求:吁!天主之母,求赐我完全属於妳:或生或死丶在 痛苦丶恐惧和困难中丶在苦难和绝望中,我们也能完全属於妳。吁!童贞玛利亚,天主之母,求妳恩赐,俾我们能完全属於妳,从今世直到永远,亚孟。

9月9日:圣高华(司铎) St. Peter Claver

全世界黑人的主保

 圣高华是西班牙人,生於公元一五八一年。巴塞隆纳大学毕业後,领受四品神职,入耶稣会修道。公元一六一○年,当局派他往哥伦比亚境内 传教。那时, 若干人购买黑人为奴,教宗保禄三世和各区主教大声疾呼,严厉指摘这项罪行。高华奉派协助在美洲主持救济黑人事业的耶稣会神父,高华说:「今後,我永远为黑 人服务。」高华为黑人讲解要理,照顾病患,此外也为囚犯丶矿工等各阶层人传福音。他具有显发灵迹,预言未来,窥悉人心的神恩。公元一六五四年,一批神职人 员从西班牙来到此地,专为黑人付洗。高华大喜,因他知道今後有人接下他的工作了。不久,高华得了重病,他对旁人说:「我就快要死了。」两日後,圣母圣诞瞻 礼日,高华与世长辞。全城的黑人和印第安人为他举行了特别的弥撒,以志哀思。高华的美名传遍全世界。公元一八八八年,荣列圣品。教宗良十三世,封圣人为全 世界黑人的主保。

9月11日:圣董文学(司 铎丶殉道) St. John Gabriel Perboyre

 圣人在一八○二年生於法国,一八一八年入遣使会,一八二○年在巴黎晋铎,曾任神学教授丶初学导师;一八三五年先抵澳门,翌年到中国, 先在河南,一八三八年在湖北传教。教难时被捕入狱,受尽诸般苦辱;一八四○年九月十一日,被判绞刑。

9月12日:圣母玛利亚圣名 Holy Name of Mary

 贞女玛利亚,你在全世界妇女中,蒙受至高者上主天主的祝福,因为他如此赞扬了你的名,使万民也对你赞口不绝。

9月13日:圣金口若望(主 教丶圣师)(纪念) St. John Chrysostom

(344-407)

 圣若望的「金口(Chrysostom)」之名,来自於他过人的讲道天份;他所留下的丰富着作与道理,更使他成为初期教会中最伟大的 教父之一。然 而,他的一生,并非仅是这些显耀的光辉而已;真正使其成为一位饱经焠炼的圣者,反倒是那些缠绕着他的政治迫害与诋毁,这就足以标记出一位伟人身处於帝国首 都时的那种处境了。

 约344年时,圣人诞生於安提约基(Antioch)的一个贫穷基督教家庭里,双亲的名字是Secundus与Anthusa。其母 20岁时,就 已是城里的德行楷模了。年轻时,若望曾在当时最富盛名的外教演说家-Libanius的门下攻读修辞学;据闻,在圣人贫苦的求学过程中,他曾一度绝望地亲 吻了一个圣母的圣像,此後,便在其嘴边出现一个金圈,同侪们便在惊愕之馀,给了圣人「金口」这称号。当然,他那卓越的宣讲天赋,以及对圣言的独到见解,才 是使他获致「金口」这称谓的真正原因。

 早年,教宗就曾希望授予圣人司铎一职,但圣人自觉不配,便退隐至安提约基城附近的旷野,开始他苦修的生活(374年);直到381 年,因健康状况 不佳,才迫使他停止旷野的补赎生活。回到城里後,主教St. Meletius立即授予圣人执事的圣秩。稍後,这位主教便被召唤至君士坦丁堡,负责主持第二次的公议会了。386年,主教Flavian派任圣人为安提 约基教会的长老。不久後,若望便被授予司铎的职务,其公开宣讲的生涯也就此开始,「金口」之名也就不胫而走。398年的2月28日,君士坦丁堡的圣座获悉 了圣人的一切之後,亟欲拔擢他来接替已故的宗主教St. Nectarius。但为避免安提约基的居民群起反对,便在暗中进行这项调遣。至此,圣人成了教会内最显耀的光芒之一。

 当时,东罗马帝国的皇帝是Arcadius,他虽有St. Arsenius the Great为其个人的神师,但因其生性软弱,反倒常受制於皇后Eudoxia的控制。由於宫廷内的道德生活极为腐败,圣人便本着对天主的热诚与正直,在一 次演说的机会中,对宫廷大加指责。不料,此举却大大地激怒了骄傲的Eudoxia皇后。於是,皇后便与圣人的死敌 - 亚历山大黎雅的宗主教Theophilius合谋,在公议会中捏造假罪证诬陷圣人。最後,403年时,若望惨遭罢拙,被流放至Pontus。判决宣布後, 民众怨声载道;流放次日的夜晚,全城突然发生剧烈的地震,皇后便心生恐惧,哀求皇帝将金口若望召回。

 尽管圣人是带着胜利回到君士坦丁堡,但他与皇后的冲突并未就此告终。同年的九月,皇后在圣索菲亚大教堂(The Church of the St. Sophia)前的广场上,竖起自己的银制雕像,并奉献了许多不宜的欢宴行为。此举又招致了圣人的义怒,并对皇后的行径大加挞伐。当然,皇后也非省油的 灯,便决定对圣人的冒犯之举加以报复。404年的六月,圣人再次遭到流放,此次的地点是在Cilicia与Armenia的边界Cucusus。在流放之 地,圣人多次致书给当时的教宗Innocent,欲寻求罗马宗座的调停。稍後,便有几位主教与司铎奉教宗之命前去君士坦丁堡,要求为此事召开公议会。

 然而,若望的死敌Theophilius,因担心收回流放的成命,会动摇他在帝国里的地位,於是便蛊惑皇帝相信:若收回成命,则将有 损於皇帝的尊威;於是便劝服皇帝,将圣人流放至更加荒凉偏远的庇提乌(Pythius)去,该处是帝国的边界了。

 为已年迈的若望而言,这段前往庇提乌的行程充满着艰辛与折磨;除了本身健康的状况就不好之外,负责押解的310位兵士,也以极为残酷 的方式对待圣 人。最後,圣人还未抵达庇提乌,就在靠近庞多(Pontus)的一个名叫高马纳(Comana)的途中病逝了。相传,圣人过世的前几日,殉道者 Basiliscus曾向若望显现,并预报了圣人的死期。果不其然,圣人在407年的9月14日,於殉道者Basiliscus的圣堂里交付了自己的灵 魂。他最後的遗言便是:「在一切的事上,愿光荣都归於天主。」

 31年後,金口若望的圣髑从高马纳被迎回君士坦丁堡,当时是由皇帝Theodosius the Younger与他的姊妹St. Pulcheria负责亲自迎接;他们为当时父母流放圣人的决定感到痛悔,并热切地寻求圣人在天之灵的宽恕。

 圣人的着作极为丰富,除了留下许多完整的圣经诠释,包括《创世纪》丶《玛窦福音》丶《若望福音》丶《宗徒大事录》,以及所有的保禄书 信外,还包括 了1447篇的道理和240封书信。其着作之多,可谓是教父之最;教会的圣师当中,就有22位在他们所留下的讲道稿里,对金口若望表达极高的尊崇。

※由於普世教会9月14日庆祝的是「光荣十字架」的庆典,故纪念圣人的庆典便往前挪移一天,而改在9月13日庆祝。

 波涛汹涌,狂风可怖;但是我们不怕被淹没:因为我们站在磐石上,尽管大海肆虐,总不能粉碎这磐石;尽管波浪滔天,总不能颠覆耶稣的 船。请问我们怕 什麽呢?怕死亡吗?「在我看来,生活就是基督,死亡就是利益。」我们怕充军吗?「大地和地上的万物都属乎上主。」我们怕财产被充公吗?「我们没带什麽到世 上来,同样,也不能带走什麽。」

 基督和我在一起,我还怕谁呢?即使海浪或官长的怒火起来反对我,在我看来都好像蜘蛛丝那般地无足轻重。若非我对你们的爱德将我强留於 此处,今天我 早已首途他去了。因我常向主说:「主,愿祢的旨意承行。」这便是我的城堡丶我不可摇撼的磐石丶我坚固的靠山。愿天主的旨意成就。若祂愿意我留在这里,我感 谢祂;无论祂愿意我留在哪里,我都感谢祂。…空间使我们彼此远离,但爱德却使我们连结在一起,甚至是死亡也无法使我们分离。

──节录自《每日诵祷》9月13日诵读选读金口圣若望主教讲道集。

9月14日:光荣十字圣架(庆日)The Exaltation of the Holy Cross

 十字架本是犹太人处死凶犯的刑具,耶稣基督被钉在十字架上,十字架成了我们得救的象征。相传:君士坦丁皇帝之母圣妇海伦娜在公元三二 O年九月十四日在耶路撒冷寻获了十字圣架。後来在加尔瓦略山上寻获十字架的地方修建了两座圣堂,举行瞻仰丶敬拜和纪念活动。

 公元六三O年,君士坦丁堡皇帝希辣克略,把波斯人所夺去的十字圣架(按波斯人於六一四年劫走十字圣架)夺回後,亲自背着上哥耳哥答 山。可是上山的 时候,突有一股力量阻住他,不能向前走。匝加利亚宗主教在皇帝旁边一起步行着,就上前对皇帝说:你穿了华美的朝服,与当年基督谦卑的身份显然不相称。皇帝 就把皇冠朝服除下,改穿朴素的衣服,赤足上山,将十字圣木安放在山顶基督受难的处所。

 波斯人抢走的时候,十字架木盛放在银盒里,希辣克略取回後,宗主教和神职人员检视,银盒上的印章密封完好无损,便用钥匙开启,朝拜圣 木,同时举行隆重典礼,将圣木高举,降福众人,许多病人当场痊愈。

 根据历史学家详实的报导,自第四世纪以来,九月十四目的瞻礼,原是庆祝寻获十字圣架,同时举行哥耳哥答山上大堂祝圣的周年纪念。

 自第八世纪起,寻获十字圣架的瞻礼移至五月三日举行。九月十四日的瞻礼,仅纪念光荣十字圣架。一九六O年教宗若望二十三世决定将五月 三日寻获十字 圣架合并於九月十四日庆典。恭敬圣十字架的理由很多:教会在经文中把它称为①君王的旗帜;②生命的树木。「请看主的十字架,让敌人望风而逃。」;「死亡因 乐园的树木而发生,生命却籍十字圣木而复活」;③十字架是胜利的标记,领导我们凯旋进入天庭;④十字架是我们的依靠,十字架胜利,十字架为王,十字架扫除 一罪恶,阿肋路亚!⑤十字架是天主爱人的佐证。我们跟着圣方济各不断地朝拜说:「耶稣基督,我们钦崇你丶赞美你,你用此圣架,救赎了普世!」

9月15日:痛苦圣母(纪念) Our Lady of Sorrows

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 此节日源於中世纪一些修会团体,纪念圣母在十字架下的哀恸,以後扩展为纪念圣母一生所受的各种苦难。

 圣母既分担了基督的苦难,也激励我们同样去作,好使基督的苦难和复活奥迹,不断延续在我们身上。

9月16日:圣高尔乃略及圣西彼廉(纪念) Ss. Cornelius and Cyprian

  圣高尔乃略於公元251年任罗马教会主教,竭力攻斥诺威森异端,并得圣西彼廉协助,一起坚持:背教者必要严格履行长期补赎後,才得重新被教会接纳;此举加 强了教宗的领导权威。後被皇帝加禄放逐,於253年死於古城。他的遗体被移葬於罗马加利斯都地窟中。

 圣西彼廉是第三世纪的着名圣人,在教会多灾多难之秋,以圣德丶事工和着作,捍卫信仰,为主作证,振兴教会纪律,成为当时非洲教会的领 袖。在非洲教会占有很重要的地位。

 西彼廉於公元210年左右,在迦太基的外教家庭出生。未入教前任修辞学教授,法庭辩人等重要职务。壮年皈依圣教,弃俗修道,他天资聪 敏过人,又精 通文学丶哲学,所以很快领受了铎品,公元二四八年升任迦太基主教。可是就任仅一年,教难即开始,异徒高呼:「把西彼廉投入狮牢。」圣西彼廉被迫彻退暂隐别 地,以通讯方式与教友保持联络,鼓励众人坚守信道,他说:「我在神视中,听到一个神秘的声音对我说:你求什麽,就会得到什麽。我们大家求吧!求天主赏赐我 们在信德的基础上永远园结一体,永不背弃真道。」西彼廉也告诉教友,天主向他启示,教难是暂时的,圣教不久将享受平安。

 公元二五二年间,迦太基发生大疫,无数的人丧命,西彼廉领导全城教友组成救济团体,有钱出钱,有力出力,西彼廉常说:「不要让你的钱 白白地放在箱里,快拿出来作善举。钱财原是身外之物,生不带来,死不带去。好好地用在慈善事业中,将来在天国获得百倍的赏报。」

 到公元二五七年,华肋良疯狂迫害教会,西彼廉琅璫入狱。法庭审判时的纪录,至今仍保存着。最後圣西彼廉被以违抗皇帝圣旨处以死刑。在 法庭旁听的教友,大声高呼我们愿和主教一同斩首致命。圣西彼廉为主致命,时维公元二五八年。

 圣高尔乃略与圣西彼廉的殉道时间,相差五年,但因同月同日,况且他们彼此团结,故教会在同一天纪念他们,而他们的名字,也同列於罗马 感恩经里。

圣西彼廉的金句

 「这将不是你的荣耀和福乐吗?就是被容许参见天主,得到那荣誉,分享救恩和永光的喜乐,与主基督丶你的天主在一起……在天国里,置身 於天主的义人和朋友之中,享受那赚得的丶永不腐朽的喜乐。」(圣西彼廉,《书信集》 58,10,1)

 「除非有教会为母,没有人能有天主为父。」(圣西彼廉,《论公教会的统一》4)

 「千万不要忘记,当我们称呼天主为『我们的父』时,言行举止就应该相称天主子女的身分。」(圣西彼廉,《论主祷文》11)

 「谁若追求天主之国和天主的正义,天主承诺会另外加给他一切。事实上,万物都属於天主:谁拥有天主,甚麽都有,只要天主拥有他。」 (圣西彼廉,《论主祷文》21)

 「挑拨离间丶制造纷争的人,天主不会悦纳他们的祭献,要他们先离开祭台,回去同兄弟和好。天主最喜欢求和平的祈祷。为天主最美好的礼 物是和平丶彼此和睦,是整个忠信子民在父丶子和圣神内的合一。」(圣西彼廉,《论主祷文》23)

9月17日:圣伯拉民(主 教丶圣师) St. Robert Bellarmine

 圣人在一五四二年出生於意大利;及长,在罗马入耶稣会。晋铎後从事护道工作,并於罗马公学教授神学,颇负盛名。後被任命为枢机和加菩 亚主教,并协 助罗马圣部解决当时的困难问题,贡献良多。圣人曾给予积极意见,促成教宗保禄五世,於一六一五年批准在中国可用中文举行弥撒丶各项圣事丶日课和其他礼仪。 一六二一年安逝於罗马。

9月17日:圣方济五伤 Stigmata of St. Francis of Assisi

 圣方济以慷慨与热切的心,努力地活出了基督的福音,以至於连基督圣伤的印记-「五伤(Stigmata)」,也深刻地留在方济的手丶 足与肋旁。

 方济的贫穷向来为人所称道;1213年,他从奥兰多伯爵(Count Orlando of Chiusi)那,接受了拉维纳山(Mount La Verna)的口头馈赠,该处介於Tiber与Arno二河之间,地处罗马北部的亚雷佐省(Arezzo)。这座山後来成了圣人祈祷与补赎的所在,时间长 达十年之久。时至今日,此山仍是朝圣与祈祷最热门的景点。

 圣方济对总领天使圣弥额尔(St. Michael the Archangel)向来至为恭敬,他曾多次於该总领天使的庆日(9月29日)前,奉行40天的斋戒丶禁食;1224年,在接近「光荣十架 (Exaltation of the Holy Cross—9月14日)」的庆日前,圣人获得了一个神视,他见到一个六翼的色拉芬(seraph)天使之後,便发现自己的双手丶双足与肋旁,都留下了基 督受难时的印记。

 然而,方济仍在世的时候,这五伤的印记仅被极少数的人所知,因为他希望避免任何来自他人或是自己的内外在骚动。然而,正因为这些伤口 再再地使他感到痛苦,圣女嘉勒(佳兰St. Clare)才为圣人编织一双特殊的草鞋,好使方济更易於行走。

 1226年圣人过世之後,一些可靠的证人,包括後来的教宗额我略九世(Pope Gregory IX)与亚历山大四世(Pope Alexander IV),都作证曾亲眼在圣人的遗体上见过五伤;许多人甚至如此解释:圣方济的五伤,是他彻底追随基督,完全与祂一致的明证。

 教宗本笃十一世(Pope Benedict XI 1303-04),後来便允许方济家族在9月17日举行圣方济领受五伤的庆祝。

为光荣圣方济五伤的祈祷文

 嘘!吾主耶稣基督,当此世开始变得冷漠之时,祢为了使人心在祢的圣爱之火中更新,便在最有福的方济肉身上,留下了祢苦难的五伤:请祢 纪念他的功绩与祈祷;并且惠赐我们恩宠,在祢的仁慈中永远背负起祢的十架,好结出补赎的甜美果实来。亚孟。

9月19日:圣雅纳略(主 教丶殉道) St. Januarius

 圣人是卑尼佛多主教,约於三○五年的教难时,在拿玻里殉道,深受该城人民特别敬礼。

9月20日:圣金大建及同伴 (殉道)(纪念) Ss. Andrew Kim Taegon and Companions

 基督信仰於十七世纪由中国传入韩国;平信徒自始便在福传方面,一直担当重要角色,其中不少甚至备受迫害和殉道。金大建为第一位殉道的 韩国司铎。他曾远涉重洋,到澳门修读神哲学,後在上海晋铎,回国传扬福音。他於一八四六年九月十六日被斩首殉道,年仅二十五岁。

9月21日:圣玛窦(宗徒, 圣史)(庆日) St. Matthew

宗徒丶圣史
主保:银行人员

 圣玛窦是十二宗徒之一,也是圣经中第一部福音的作者。这是教会不变的传统,也为福音本身所确认。根据谷二14的记载,玛窦是阿耳斐的 儿子,且在葛 法翁任税吏时为耶稣所召叫,成为宗徒之一。在其归依前,他曾是位官员,专司收取税金;在马尔谷与路加福音中,他被称为「肋未」。

 初期,玛窦的使徒工作仅限於巴勒斯坦内的数个团体之中,但晚年的生活因无任何史料记载,因此无法确认圣史晚年究竟身在何处。有一个传 统指出,玛窦 开垦福音的园地是在衣索比亚;其他的传统则指向巴底亚(Parthia—西亚一古国)与波斯;另外,後人也无法确认圣史究竟是领受了殉道的冠冕而死,亦或 是自然老死。

 玛窦福音是写给那些心灵空乏且切望被饱饫的同胞们看的,无论他们是耶稣的信仰者或不信者;为前者而言,福音成了他们考验来临之时的鼓 励,特别是面 对再度跌进犹太主义的危险之时;为後者而言,福音的目的是为向他们确认,默西亚的来临已在我们的主耶稣这人身上实现;所有默西亚国度拥抱子民的许诺,透过 祂,已在精神上而非以一个世俗的方式完满达致。耶稣说:「我的国度并不在这世上。」其次,玛窦福音也回答了洗者若翰门徒所问的问题:「你是要来的那位,或 者我们还要等候另一位?」(路七20)。

 为了给自己巴勒斯坦的同胞们写福音,圣史玛窦以其母语阿辣美文撰写福音,这种「希伯来腔」,在福音与宗徒大事录中皆有提及。很快地, 主後42年, 黑落德阿革黎帕一世在位时兴起了教难,圣史於是远赴他乡传播福音。另一传统以为,玛窦福音写成的时间应是在他远赴他乡与召开耶路撒冷大公会议之间,亦即是 在主後的42到50年之间完成的。然而,今日学者较多同意是在公元80或90年间写成玛窦福音,是在归化的犹太人团体中完成的。

9月23日:圣碧岳·庇特来(司铎)(纪念)St. Pio of Pietrelcina

 碧岳神父,俗名方济傅佐尼,1887年5月25日生於贝内文托(Benevento)教区的彼埃特里支那 (Pietrelcina)。1903年 1月6日进入嘉布遣小兄弟会当修士,1910年8月10日在贝内文托主教座堂被祝圣为司铎。1916年7月28日到加尔加诺(Gargano)的圣若望· 罗敦多(San Giovanni Rotondo),直到1968年9月23日去世。1918年9月20日星期五早上,当他在老旧的小堂,对着咏经席的苦像祈祷时,得到印上五伤的恩典,这 些伤口半个世纪之久,都会裂开并流血。碧岳终其一生,专心履行司铎职务,他成立了多个「祈祷会」,开办了一所现代化医院,命名为「解除痛苦之家」。於 1999年5月2日,由教宗若望保禄二世宣布为真福,并於2002年6月16日,由同一位教宗宣布为圣人。

Padre Pio was born May 25, 1887 in Pietrelcina, Italy, a small country town located in southern Italy. His parents were Grazio Mario Forgione (1860-1946) and Maria Guiseppa de Nunzio Forgione (1859-1929). He was baptized the next day, in the nearby Castle Church, with the name of his brother, Francesco, who died in early infancy. Other children in the family were an older brother, Michele; three younger sisters: Felicita, Pellegrina and Grazia; and two children who died as infants.

Religion was the center of life for both Pietrelcina and the Forgione family. The town had many celebrations throughout the year in honor of different saints and the bell in the Castle Church was used not for ringing the hour, but for daily devotional time. Friends have described the Forgione family as "the God-is-everything-people" because they attended Daily Mass, prayed the Rosary nightly and fasted three days a week from meat in honor of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. Although Padre Pio’s grandparents and parents could not read and write, they memorized Sacred Scripture and told the children Bible stories. It was in this lovely family setting that the seeds of Faith were nurtured within Padre Pio.

From his early childhood, it was evident that Padre Pio had a deep piety. When he was five years old, he solemnly consecrated himself to Jesus. He liked to sing hymns, play church and preferred to be by himself where he could read and pray. As an adult, Padre Pio commented that in his younger years he had conversed with Jesus, the Madonna, his guardian angel, and had suffered attacks by the devil.

Padre Pio’s parents first learned of his desire to become a priest in 1897. A young Capuchin friar was canvassing the countryside seeking donations. Padre Pio was drawn to this spiritual man and told his parents, "I want to be a friar… with a beard." His parents traveled to Morcone, a community thirteen miles north of Pietrelcina, to investigate if the friars would be interested in having their son. The Capuchins were interested, but Padre Pio would need more education than his three years of public schooling.

In order to finance the private tutor needed to educate Padre Pio, his father went to America to find work. During this time, he was confirmed (September 27, 1899), studied with tutors and completed the requirements for entrance into the Capuchin order. At age 15, he took the Habit of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin on January 22, 1903. On the day of his investiture, he took the name of Pio in honor of Saint Pius V, the patron saint of Pietrelcina, and was called Fra, for brother, until his priestly ordination.

A year later, on January 22, 1904, Fra Pio knelt before the altar and made his First Profession of the Evangelical Counsels of Poverty, Chastity, and Obedience. Then, he traveled by oxcart to the seventeenth-century friary of St. Francis of Assisi and began six years of study for the priesthood and continued his development in community life toward the profession of his solemn vows. After three years of temporary profession, Padre Pio took his final vows in 1907.

Then on August 10, 1910, the much-anticipated day finally arrived. The twenty-three year old Fra Pio was ordained a priest by Archbishop Paolo Schinosi at the Cathedral of Benevento. Four days later, he celebrated his first Mass at the parish church of Our Lady of the Angels.

Within a month of his ordination, (September 7, 1910), as Padre Pio was praying in the Piana Romana, Jesus and Mary appeared to him and gave him the wounds of Christ, the Stigmata. For Padre Pio’s doctors, the wounds created much confusion. He asked Jesus to take away "the annoyance," adding, " I do want to suffer, even to die of suffering, but all in secret." The wounds went away and the supernatural life of Padre Pio remained a secret...for a while.

On November 28, 1911, Padre Agostino, who was a contemporary, friend, and confidant, was advised that Padre Pio was ill. He rushed into Padre Pio’s room to care for him. Padre Agostino observed what he thought was a dying man and rushed to the chapel to pray. When he finished praying, he returned to Padre Pio’s room and found his friend alert and full of joy.

This was the beginning of Padre Pio’s documented ecstasies - all of which were "edifying, theologically correct and expressed a deep love for God. "

Due to Padre Pio’s on-going ill health, he was sent home to recuperate and was separated from his religious community from the end of 1911 - 1916. During this time, the Capuchin Constitution required a friar who was sent home because of illness had to maintain his friar life as much as possible. Padre Pio did this. He said Mass and taught school.

On September 4, 1916, Padre Pio was ordered to return to his community life and was assigned to San Giovanni Rotondo, an agricultural community, located in the Gargano Mountains. Our Lady Of Grace Capuchin Friary was approximately a mile from town and was not easy to reach. The Capuchins had a reputation for their holiness and simple life. When Padre Pio became a part of the community at Our Lady of Grace, there were seven friars.

With the outbreak of the war, only three friars stayed at Our Lady of Grace; the others were selected for military service. At the beginning, his responsibilities included teaching at the seminary and being the spiritual director of the students. He spent his free time reading the Bible and handling correspondence. When another friar was called into service, Padre Pio became in charge of the college.

In August 1917 Padre Pio was inducted into the service and assigned to the 4th Platoon of the 100th Company of the Italian Medical Corps. During this time he was very unhappy. By mid-October he was in the hospital, but was not discharged. Finally, in March 1918, he was dismissed and returned to San Giovanni Rotondo.

Upon his return, Padre Pio became a spiritual director and had many spiritual daughters and sons. He had five rules for spiritual growth: weekly confession, daily Communion, spiritual reading, meditation and examination of conscience. In explaining his spiritual growth rules, Padre Pio compared dusting a room, used or unused on a weekly basis, to weekly confession. He suggested two times of daily meditation and self-examination: in the morning to "prepare for battle" and in the evening to "purify your soul." Padre Pio's motto, "Pray, Hope and Don’t Worry" is the synopsis of his application of theology into daily life. A Christian should recognize God in everything, offering everything to Him saying, "Thy will be done". In addition, all should aspire to heaven and put their trust in Him and not worry about what he is doing, as long as it is done with a desire to please God.

In July 1918, Pope Benedict XV urged all Christians to pray for an end to the World War. On July 27, Padre Pio offered himself as a victim for the end of the war. Days later between August 5 -7, Padre Pio had a vision in which Christ appeared and pierced his side. As a result of this experience, Padre Pio had a physical wound in his side. The experience has been identified as a "transverberation" or piercing of the heart indicating the union of love with God.

A few weeks later, on September 20, 1918, Padre Pio was praying in the choir loft in the Church of Our Lady of Grace, when the same Being who appeared to him on August 5, appeared again. It was the wounded Christ. When the ecstasy ended, Padre Pio had received the Visible Stigmata, the five wounds of Christ, which would stay with him for his remaining 50 years.

By early 1919, word about the stigmata began to spread to the outside world. Over the years countless people, including physicians, examined Padre Pio’s wounds. Padre Pio was not interested in the physicians’ attempts to explain his stigmata. He accepted it as a gift from God, though he would have preferred to suffer the pains of Christ’s Passion without the world knowing.

God used Padre Pio - especially the news of his stigmata - to give people hope as they began to rebuild their life after the war. Padre Pio and his spiritual gifts of the stigmata, perfume, prophecy and bilocation was a sign of God in their midst and led people back to their Faith. So life at the friary and the Church of Our Lady of Grace began to revolve around Padre Pio’s ministry. A room and priests were designated to handle the correspondence and the remaining friars heard confessions. San Giovanni Rotondo began to be filled with pilgrims. Since there were no hotels, people slept outdoors. A normal day for Padre Pio was a busy nineteen hours - Mass, hearing confessions and handling correspondence. He usually had less than two hours to sleep.

As his spiritual influence increased, so did the voices of his detractors. Accusations against Padre Pio poured in to the Holy Office (today the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith). By June 1922, restrictions were placed on the public’s access to Padre Pio. His daily Mass time varied each day, without announcement to diminish the crowds, and he was ordered not to answer correspondence from people seeking spiritual direction. It was also rumored that plans were being developed to transfer Padre Pio. However, both local and Church authorities were afraid of public riots and decided that a more remote and isolated place than San Giovanni Rotondo could not be found.

Despite the restrictions and controversies, Padre Pio’s ministry continued. From 1924 - 1931 various statements were made by the Holy See that denied the supernaturality of Padre Pio’s phenomena. On June 9, 1931, the Feast of Corpus Christi, Padre Pio was ordered by the Holy See to desist from all activities except the celebration of the Mass, which was to be in private. By early 1933, Pope Pius XI ordered the Holy See to reverse its ban on Padre Pio’s public celebration of Mass, saying, "I have not been badly disposed toward Padre Pio, but I have been badly informed."

Padre Pio’s faculties were progressively restored. First, the confessions of men were allowed (March 25, 1934) and then women (May 12, 1934). Although he had never been examined for a preaching license, the Capuchin Minister General granted him permission to preach, honoris cuasa, and he preached several times a year. In 1939 when Pope Pius XII was elected pope, he began to encourage people to visit Padre Pio. More and more people began to make pilgrimages.

In 1940, Padre Pio convinced three doctors to move to San Giovanni Rotondo and he announced plans to build a Home to Relieve Suffering. As Padre Pio expressed to Pope Pius, " …a place that the patient might be led to recognize those working for his cure as God's helpers, engaged in preparing the way for the intervention of grace." The doctors were excited about the building, but were fearful that this was not the time to begin such a project with Europe being on the brink of another world war.

These fears did not stop Padre Pio and the project began. After the war, Barbara Ward, a British humanitarian, came to Italy to write an article on postwar reconstruction. She attended Padre Pio's Mass and met one of the physicians who came to San Giovanni Rotondo to work with the Home to Relieve Suffering. Upon learning of the project, she asked that the Home to Relieve Suffering receive a part of the funds designated for reconstruction. Consequently, the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA) gave a grant of $325,000 for the project. The building opened its doors on May 5,1956. A year later, Padre Pio announced plans for a medical and religious center where doctors and interns could further their medical studies and Christian formation.

With the opening of the hospital, Padre Pio was truly now an international figure and his followers greatly increased. To accommodate all the pilgrims, a new, large church was constructed.

In the mid-1960s, Padre Pio's health began to deteriorate, but he continued to say Daily Mass and hear fifty confessions a day. By July of 1968, he was almost bedridden. On the fiftieth anniversary of the stigmata (September 20,1968), Padre Pio celebrated Mass, attended the public recitation of the Rosary and Benediction. On the next day, he was too tired to say Mass or hear confessions. On September 22, he managed to say Mass and the attendees had to struggle to hear him. Just after midnight, in the early morning hours of September 23, Padre Pio called his superior and asked to make his confession. He then renewed his vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. At 2:30am, Padre Pio died in his cell. As he foretold, Padre Pio lived sick but died healthy, with the stigmata healed.

On September 26, 1968, over a hundred thousand people gathered at San Giovanni Rotondo to pay their respects to this holy man. He was buried in the crypt prepared for him in the Church of Our Lady of Grace.

9月26日:圣葛斯默及圣达 弥盎(殉道) Ss. Cosmas and Damian

 据悉:葛斯默及达弥盎两兄弟,原藉阿剌伯,行医为业,在叙利亚一带,一面行医济世,一面传扬福音;约在三百年左右,教难时殉道。按古 书记载,两位殉道烈士的坟墓在叙利亚的祺利;建有圣堂一座,以尊敬他们。後来他们的敬礼传到罗马,而後遍及全球教会。

9月27日:圣云先(司铎) (纪念) St. Vincent de Paul

(1580-1660)
遣使会会祖
主保:人道关怀丶社会志工
圣人本身的脾气极为易怒,会是那种固执丶易怒,甚至霸道的人。但是,他却成了一位温驯且充满感情,并且对他人的需要极其敏锐的牧者。

 一位临终病患的告解,开启了圣云先的眼目,使他清晰地看到法国市井小民的灵性需求;为他而言,这是圣人生命中最为严峻的决定时刻了。

 主後1580年,圣人诞生在法国加斯哥尼(Gascony)的一个小村庄里,双亲皆极为贫穷。早年,他在阿克斯(Acqs)的方济会 神父那,享受 了最初几年的学校教育。因着那四年的愉快学习,圣人在知识上有了长足的进步;村里的一位士绅,便延请圣人作其小孩的家庭教师。为此,圣人便有机会在不加重 父母负担的情况下,继续他的学习。1596年,圣人进入了陶罗斯大学(University of Toulouse)攻读神学,并在1600年时顺利晋铎。

 1605年,在从马塞(Marseilles)驶往拿玻尼(Narbonne)的海路上,圣人落入了非洲海盗的手中,并以奴隶的身分 被带到突尼斯 (Tunis)去。从那时起,直至天主的神圣眷佑使圣人能逃离为止,他共被拘禁了约二年之久。逃离海盗的掌握後,圣人短暂地造访了罗马,之後便回到法国。 回国後,他成了高伊尼伯爵(Count of Goigny),Emmanuel de Gondy家族的家庭教师。

 主後1617年,他开始宣讲传教的使命;而先前圣人所帮助过的高依尼伯爵,便大力地在金钱与物资上赞助圣人所组织的传教团体。最初, 这一群献身於 穷人服务的志工,希望圣人出来领导众人,但由於圣人的谦逊,他不愿接受此一职务;稍後,他亲眼目睹船上的奴隶不被人道的对待後,便决定回到团体中,於 1625年创立了一个後来被称为「遣使会」(Congregation of the Mission)或「云先人」(Vincentians)的修会。该会的会士除了必须矢发贫穷丶贞洁与服从三个圣愿外,还必须发一个持恒性的圣愿 (Stability),为使自己能长久地在偏远与穷困的小村落中服务天主的子民。

 稍後,为了各堂区穷人与病人灵性与身体上的需要,圣人又创建了一个爱德善会;该团体在圣女鲁懿子(St. Louise de Marillac)的协助下,後来成了「仁爱女修会」(Daughters of Charity)。为这个新团体而言,病房就是她们的会院;堂区就是她们的圣堂;街市就是她们的隐修之处。

 但圣人所做的还不仅於此。他继续向巴黎的贵妇们募款,为他的传教使命筹措经费,并进而开办了几家医院,且为战争中死伤者募款,并从北 非赎回了超过1200个遭到海盗奴役的人。

 另外,圣人对於教育神职人员也抱有极大的热诚,因为当时的神职班大多戒律松弛,道德涣散,且经常有滥权与无知的情形。故圣人所创建的 遣使会,除了以救济穷人为宗旨外,也以神职班的神修训练为己任。

 这位天主之仆所行过的事迹实在无法细数,爱德则是这些无数工作的主要驱使;值得一提的是,圣人本身的脾气极为易怒,但诚如圣人自己所 言,若非天主的恩宠,他会是那种固执丶易怒,甚至霸道的人。但是,他却成了一位温驯且充满感情,并且对他人的需要极其敏锐的牧者。

 虽然,服务的工作极为烦杂,但圣人的灵魂却仍是紧密地与天主结合为一;尽管在世人面前,云先总是被恭敬地有如一位伟大的人物,但他却 将自己的心根植於最深的谦逊之中。

 圣云先,这位不朽的爱德宗徒,就在其80岁时,於1660年安逝於巴黎。教宗良十三世(Pope Leo XIII)册封其为所有爱德工作者的主保;稍後,以圣人为名的「圣云先会」(Society of St. Vincent de Paul),便是由其仰慕者Blessed Frederic Ozanam於1833年所创立。圣人的影响可见一般。

圣云先司铎的作品

 为穷人的服务应超越一切,而且不要迟延。如果祈祷的时间,你该拿药给病人,或帮助一个穷人,你就安心地去吧!把这行为当作祈祷奉献给 天主。不要为 了因如此做而中断的祈祷感到不安,或有任何的罪恶感:因为倘若为了天主的缘故而中断祈祷,天主并未因此而被怠慢,也就是说,暂时中断一项对天主的善工,是 为完成另一项善工。

 因此,当你为了帮助某位穷人,而必须中断祈祷时,要切记这一点:这项善工是为了天主而做的。爱德比任何会规都要优先,任何事情都当以 爱德为依归。那麽,就让我们怀着热诚与爱心,去为穷人服务,尤其是那些被遗弃的人。我们要在天主跟前承认他们是我们的主人丶我们的保护者。

--节录自《每日诵祷》9月27日诵读-选读圣云先司铎的作品。

9月28日:圣文策老(殉 道) St. Wenceslaus

 圣人於公元九○七年左右,在波希米亚出生,自幼由祖母接受热心敬主的教育;继任公爵後,对治理所辖人民,并促进他们的信德生活,备尝 艰辛。其弟谋反,遣剌客杀害圣人,时於九三五或九二九年;死後即被尊为殉道烈士,成为波希米亚的特敬主保。

9月28日:圣老楞佐.卢斯 及同伴(殉道) Ss. Lorenzo Ruiz and Companions

 一六三三年至一六三七年间,老楞佐.卢斯和一些同道,在日本长崎为主殉道。这些殉道者有道明会成员,包括九位神父丶两位会士丶两位修 女,并有三位教友,其中一位教友是菲律宾藉的老楞佐.卢斯。他们的生活和殉道的榜样,为传扬基督信仰播下丰盛的种子。

9月29日:圣弥额尔丶圣加 俾额尔丶圣辣法厄耳总领天使(庆日) Ss. Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, Archangels

 七位侍立在天主宝座前的大天使中,三位的名字圣经有记载,那就是:圣弥额尔丶圣加俾额尔丶圣辣法厄耳。
 圣若望默示录记载:「那时在天上发生一场大战,弥额尔和他的天神与毒龙交战,毒龙和他的使者应战。他们(毒龙和他的天使)不能获胜,在天上再也没有位置 了。那条大龙被逐出,就是那条古蛇,名叫魔鬼和撒殚的,迷惑整个世界的。他被掷在地上,他的使者也一同被掷下来。」
  我们读达尼尔先知书第八章,那公绵羊和波斯帝国反复败於亚力山大手下的异象就是加俾额尔解释的,而且紧接着下一章就预言,七十个七年之後基督的将临。在新 约里,我们知道他怎样在圣殿内向匝加利亚预告他的儿子若翰的诞生,而超越这一切的是他向玛利亚传报天主拣选她为圣言的母亲。
 旧约记载:天主派遣辣法厄耳伴随小多俾亚赴玛待索债。小多俾亚遇到一条大鱼,辣法厄耳救他免险,并且用鱼胆治愈多俾亚的目疾。辣法耳的名字有「天主治愈 疾病」之意。

向圣弥额尔总领天使祷文

 圣弥额尔总领天使,在战争的日子里保卫我们,免我们陷入魔鬼邪恶的阴谋丶和奸诈的陷阱中。我们谦卑地祈求,但愿上主谴责它。上天万军 的统帅,求你因上主的威能,把徘徊人间,引诱人灵,使其丧亡的撒殚及其他邪灵,抛下地狱里去。亚孟。

September 29: Feasts of St. Michael, St. Gabriel, St. Raphael
Revelation 12:7-9 “Then war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels battled against the dragon. The dragon and its angels fought back, but they did not prevail and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. The huge dragon, the ancient serpent, 9 who is called the Devil and Satan, who deceived the whole world, was thrown down to earth, and its angels were thrown down with it.”

Prayer to St. Michael

Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruins of souls. Amen.

9月30日:圣热罗尼莫(司 铎,圣师)(纪念) St. Jerome (345-420)
图书馆员的主保

Patron saint of librarian and students

热罗尼莫遭遇肉情的诱惑,想到罗马纸醉金迷的生活。他咬紧牙关,坚决与诱惑决斗。他热泪盈眶,哀求耶稣垂怜,厚恩宠,克服诱惑。

 圣经学权威丶教会圣师,热罗尼莫生於三四二年。出生地意大利巴诺尼亚和多马西亚边境的史帝东城。青年时,赴罗马读书,拜着名文学家多 纳大为师。

 热罗尼莫聪明好学,精通拉丁文和希腊文。不幸,他的老师是异教徒,只注重学问,不注重教理。所以热罗尼莫对宗教生活减轻了兴趣,没有 幼年时那样热心了。

 在罗马住了三年,热罗尼莫去脱利爱深造。脱利爱宗教气氛很浓厚,热罗尼莫到了那里,一变而为非常热心的教友。

 三七四年,热罗尼莫到安提阿城去,不久,生了一场重病。有一天睡梦中似乎到了耶稣的审判台前,耶稣问他:「你是谁?」热罗尼莫道: 「我是基督 徒。」耶稣斥责他说:「你说谎。你是西塞罗的门徒」(西塞罗为罗马着名的文学家)。热罗尼莫猛然从梦中惊醒。他深感过去一心钻外教文学作品,不注重研究圣 教学术,这完全是错误的。

 热罗尼莫病愈,立即往安提阿郊区旷野,独居隐修。那地方天气炎热,寸草不生,每天看见的是毒蝎和野兽。热罗尼莫遭遇肉情的诱惑,想到 罗马纸醉金迷 的生活。他咬紧牙关,坚决与诱惑决斗。他热泪盈眶,哀求耶稣垂怜,厚恩宠,克服诱惑。上主是仁慈的,他决不让我们受到超过我们力量的诱惑,他赐予我们必要 的恩宠,只要我们肯利用,一定能克服诱惑,修德成圣。

 热罗尼莫经过了这一段的考验,意志比以前锻炼得更刚强了。他除了勤操苦行以外,同时研究希伯来文。希伯来文字是很难学的,热罗尼莫有 钢铁一般的毅力,过了一个时期,他对希伯来文,大有心得,日後将用在翻译圣经的工作上。

 热罗尼莫对教会的贡献,是他的圣经研究工作。教宗格肋孟八世称他为圣经学方面最伟大的圣师。热罗尼莫研究圣经工作,有许多有利的条 件。首先,他在 圣地住了很久,对当地的风土人情,知之甚详。所以,在研究圣经时,能够正确地了解圣经文字的意义。其次,热罗尼莫除精通拉丁文和希腊文外,对希伯来语也有 深邃的研究。他聘当代着名希伯来语专家巴亚纳尼亚为教师,再加他个人聪明好学,所以他的希伯来文是很有研究的。最後,注释圣经的人,应当有相当的品性修 养,勤行祈祷,求上主赏赐真光。关於这一点,热罗尼莫经过了多年来不断的隐修生活,与主密切结合,个人已有充分的修养。

 热罗尼莫在罗马时,奉教宗圣达玛稣之命,校订了福音经和圣咏的拉丁译本,接着,又校订了新经其他部分。在白冷隐居的那一段时期,着手 翻译古经,将 古经由希伯来文译成拉丁文。他又把过去校订的圣咏译本,根据希伯来原文,再校订一次。这本伟大的圣教文献,一般称为:「拉丁通行本」圣经,由脱利腾大公会 议宣布为教会批准的圣经拉丁本。一九O七年,教宗庇护十世委派圣本笃会根据热罗尼莫的原稿,校阅现在的「拉丁通行本」圣经各版本。

 关於主日,圣人说:「主的日子,复活的日子,基督徒的日子,是我们的日子。它称为主的日子,因为主就在这一天,凯旋地升到父的身边。 如果其他民族称这日子为太阳的日子,我们也乐意承认:因为今天世界之光升起,今天正义的太阳出现,它的光芒带来了救恩。」《复活主日讲道》

 圣人与圣奥思定丶圣安博,及圣额我略,同为拉丁教会的四大圣师。

Most of the saints are remembered for some outstanding virtue or devotion which they practiced, but Jerome is frequently remembered for his bad temper! It is true that he had a very bad temper and could use a vitriolic pen, but his love for God and his Son Jesus Christ was extraordinarily intense; anyone who taught error was an enemy of God and truth, and St. Jerome went after him or her with his mighty and sometimes sarcastic pen.

He was above all a Scripture scholar, translating most of the Old Testament from the Hebrew. He also wrote commentaries which are a great source of scriptural inspiration for us today. He was an avid student, a thorough scholar, a prodigious letter-writer and a consultant to monk, bishop and pope. St. Augustine said of him, "What Jerome is ignorant of, no mortal has ever known."

St. Jerome is particularly important for having made a translation of the Bible which came to be called the Vulgate. It is not the most critical edition of the Bible, but its acceptance by the Church was fortunate. As a modern scholar says, "No man before Jerome or among his contemporaries and very few men for many centuries afterwards were so well qualified to do the work." The Council of Trent called for a new and corrected edition of the Vulgate, and declared it the authentic text to be used in the Church.

In order to be able to do such work, Jerome prepared himself well. He was a master of Latin, Greek, Hebrew and Chaldaic. He began his studies at his birthplace, Stridon in Dalmatia (in the former Yugoslavia). After his preliminary education he went to Rome, the center of learning at that time, and thence to Trier, Germany, where the scholar was very much in evidence. He spent several years in each place, always trying to find the very best teachers.

After these preparatory studies he traveled extensively in Palestine, marking each spot of Christ's life with an outpouring of devotion. Mystic that he was, he spent five years in the desert of Chalcis so that he might give himself up to prayer, penance and study. Finally he settled in Bethlehem, where he lived in the cave believed to have been the birthplace of Christ. On September 30 in the year 420, Jerome died in Bethlehem. The remains of his body now lie buried in the Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome.