Memorial of St. Alphonsus Liguori
St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori, bishop and Doctor of the Church (†1787 Pagani – Italy). Founder of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer, he was an apostle of the Eucharist and of the Blessed Virgin. His outstanding zeal for souls, so clear in his preaching, is also revealed in his prolific writings and Moral treatises. He also composed beautiful hymns.
First Reading – Jer 28:1-17
In the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah, king of Judah, in the fifth month of the fourth year, the prophet Hananiah, son of Azzur, from Gibeon, said to me in the house of the LORD in the presence of the priests and all the people: “Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon. Within two years I will restore to this place all the vessels of the temple of the LORD which Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, took away from this place to Babylon. And I will bring back to this place Jeconiah, son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and all the exiles of Judah who went to Babylon,’ says the LORD, ‘for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon.’” The prophet Jeremiah answered the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests and all the people assembled in the house of the LORD, and said: Amen! thus may the LORD do! May he fulfill the things you have prophesied by bringing the vessels of the house of the LORD and all the exiles back from Babylon to this place! But now, listen to what I am about to state in your hearing and the hearing of all the people. From of old, the prophets who were before you and me prophesied war, woe, and pestilence against many lands and mighty kingdoms. But the prophet who prophesies peace is recognized as truly sent by the LORD only when his prophetic prediction is fulfilled. Thereupon the prophet Hananiah took the yoke from the neck of the prophet Jeremiah and broke it, and said in the presence of all the people: “Thus says the LORD: ‘Even so, within two years I will break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, from off the neck of all the nations.’” At that, the prophet Jeremiah went away. Some time after the prophet Hananiah had broken the yoke from off the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: Go tell Hananiah this: Thus says the LORD: By breaking a wooden yoke, you forge an iron yoke! For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: A yoke of iron I will place on the necks of all these nations serving Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and they shall serve him; even the beasts of the field I give him. To the prophet Hananiah the prophet Jeremiah said: Hear this, Hananiah! The LORD has not sent you, and you have raised false confidence in this people. For this, says the LORD, I will dispatch you from the face of the earth; this very year you shall die, because you have preached rebellion against the LORD. That same year, in the seventh month, Hananiah the prophet died.
Responsorial Psalm – PS 119:29, 43, 79, 80, 95, 102 (R.68b)
R. Lord, teach me your statutes.
Remove from me the way of falsehood,
and favor me with your law. R.
Take not the word of truth from my mouth,
for in your ordinances is my hope. R.
Let those turn to me who fear you
and acknowledge your decrees. R.
Let my heart be perfect in your statutes,
that I be not put to shame. R.
Sinners wait to destroy me,
but I pay heed to your decrees. R.
From your ordinances I turn not away,
for you have instructed me. R.
Gospel – Mt 14:13-21
When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist, he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself. The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns. When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick. When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said, “This is a deserted place and it is already late; dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves.” He said to them, “There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves.” But they said to him, “Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.” Then he said, “Bring them here to me,” and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds. They all ate and were satisfied, and they picked up the fragments left over– twelve wicker baskets full. Those who ate were about five thousand men, not counting women and children.
St. Aethelwold, bishop (†984). Disciple of St. Dunstan of Canterbury and Bishop of Winchester, he compiled the “Regularis Concordia” for the restoration of monastic observance in England.
Blessed Mary Stella of the Blessed Sacrament, and companions, virgins and martyrs (†1943). The superior of the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth was shot together with ten nuns of the community in Nowogródek, Belarus.
St. Bernard Vu Van Duê, priest and martyr (†1838). Dominican priest beheaded in Vietnam.
St. Peter Faber, priest (†1546). One of six disciples of St. Ignatius of Loyola who played a role in the founding of the Company of Jesus.
Blessed Thomas Welbourne, martyr (†1605). Lay schoolmaster hanged in York during the reign of James I of England, for encouraging fidelity to the Pope among his students.
Blessed Benvindo de Miguel Arahal, priest and martyr (†1936). Religious of the Capuchin Tertiaries of the Sorrowful Virgin. He was brutally murdered in Madrid during the Spanish Civil War.
Blessed Aleksy Sobaszek, priest and martyr (†1942). Director of Philosophy and Theology at Poznan University, Poland. He was sent to Dachau concentration camp for exercising his priestly ministry after the German invasion.