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Monday, August 29, 2005
Martyrdom of St. John the Baptist
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Memorial (1969 Calendar): August 29
Greater Double (1955 Calendar): August 29

Today we recall the Martyrdom of St. John the Baptist, who was the one that baptized Christ and prepared His way by baptizing people in repentance. Specifically, today we recall his death.

Devotion to St. John the Baptist has been widespread for centuries. "A homily on the Ascension that same year (May 26, 1960) afforded Pope John XXIII the opportunity to assert that it may be piously believed that St. John the Baptist and St. Joseph were bodily assumed into Heaven at the time of our Lord's Resurrection"

The Gospel Account of his martyrdom:

At the time Herod the tetrarch heard of the reputation of Jesus and said to his servants, "This man is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why mighty powers are at work in him." Now Herod had arrested John, bound (him), and put him in prison on account of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, for John had said to him, "It is not lawful for you to have her."

Although he wanted to kill him, he feared the people, for they regarded him as a prophet. But at a birthday celebration for Herod, the daughter of Herodias performed a dance before the guests and delighted Herod so much that he swore to give her whatever she might ask for. Prompted by her mother, she said, "Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist." The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and the guests who were present, he ordered that it be given, and he had John beheaded in the prison.

His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who took it to her mother. His disciples came and took away the corpse and buried him; and they went and told Jesus. (Matthew 14:3-12)

From a sermon by Saint Augustine on the birth of John the Baptist:
"When John was preaching the Lord's coming he was asked, "Who are you?" And he replied: "I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness." The voice is John, but the Lord "in the beginning was the Word." John was a voice that lasted only for a time; Christ, the Word in the beginning, is eternal.
Say a prayer for St. John the Baptist's intercession that he might lead us closer to Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Master.

Litany of John the Baptist:

Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost, Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Queen of Prophets, pray for us.
Queen of Martyrs, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, precursor of Christ, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, glorious forerunner of the Sun of Justice,
pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, minister of baptism to Jesus, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, burning and shining lamp of the world, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, angel of purity before thy birth, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, special friend and favorite of Christ, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, heavenly contemplative, whose element was prayer,
pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, intrepid preacher of truth, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, voice crying in the wilderness, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, miracle of mortification and penance, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, example of profound humility, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, glorious martyr of zeal for God's holy law, pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, gloriously fulfilling thy mission, pray for us.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.

V. Pray for us, O glorious St. John the Baptist,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Collect:

May the holy festival of Thy Forerunner and Martyr, St. John the Baptist, we beseech Thee, O Lord, afford us help unto salvation: Who livest and reignest.

Prayer Source: 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal

1 comments:

del_button August 29, 2006 at 2:12 PM
The Epiphany Artist said...

He is my patron Saint for the Year. Thank you for this post:)

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