SUNDAY SCHOOL: The First Commandment of God

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SUNDAY SCHOOL

The Baltimore Catechism
Revised Edition (1941)

Lesson 16
The First Commandment of God

198. What is the first commandment of God?
The first commandment of God is: I am the Lord thy God; thou shalt not have strange gods before Me.

Thou shalt not have strange Gods before me. Thou shalt not make to thyself a graven thing, nor the likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or in the earth beneath, nor of those things that are in the waters under the earth. (Exodus 20:3-4)

199. What are we commanded by the first commandment?
By the first commandment we are commanded to offer to God alone the supreme worship that is due Him.

It is written, “The Lord thy God shalt thou worship, and him only shalt thou serve.” (Luke 4:8) Continue reading

Saint John Eudes

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Saint John Eudes

Founder of the Congregation of Jesus and Mary (Eudists) and the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity
(1601-1680)

Saint John Eudes, forerunner of devotion both to the Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, was born in 1601, some time after France had been torn apart by the revolt of the Huguenots. The rebels were calmed but relegated to western France by King Henry IV, after he himself returned to the Catholic faith. It was in that region that this young Saint spent his childhood, at Argentan in Normandy, and was educated with the Jesuits of Caen. The father of this firstborn of a family of solid and profound virtue, had himself desired the sacerdotal life, and he did not long oppose John’s desire to consecrate himself to God as a priest. At eighteen years of age Saint John had already composed a treatise on voluntary abnegation, which his confessor obliged him to publish. He was ordained in Paris as a member of the recently founded French Oratory of Saint Philip Neri; his teachers there were Fathers de Berulle and de Condren, two unsurpassed spiritual directors. The governing theme of his meditation, his preaching and his writings was the importance of the redemptive Incarnation of the Son of God, through the intermediary of His Immaculate Mother. Controversy was not lacking in those days, when the Mother of God had been relegated to a very secondary if not insignificant role by the reformers, and Saint John did not fear controversy. He chose to study both theology and what we would call debate, as essential preparations for his calling. In those days seminaries were scarce; aspiring future priests themselves sought out the instruction they needed.
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St. Clare of Monte Falco

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St. Clare of Monte Falco, Virgin

SHE was born at Monte Falco, near Spoletto, in Italy, about the year 1275. She was from her childhood an admirable model of devotion and penance. Having embraced the rule of St. Austin, she was chosen abbess yet very young; in which charge her charity, her example, and her words, inspired all who had the happiness to enjoy her conversation with an ardent desire of the most sublime perfection. Her profound recollection was the effect of the constant union of her soul with God. If she spoke any word which seemed superfluous, she condemned herself to the task of reciting one hundred Our Fathers. The passion of Christ was the favourite object of her devotion. She died on the 18th of August, 1308; the process for her canonization was ordered by Pope John XXII.; but interrupted by his death. Urban VIII. published the bull of her beatification and she is named in the Roman Martyrology. See Nævius, in his Eremus Augustiniana, p. 368. Cuper the Bollandist, p. 664. Bzovius, de Signis Ecclesiæ, l. 5, c. 49. Bened. XIV. de Canonis. Sanct. t. 4. App. § 48, p. 354. 1

Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73). Volume VIII: August.
The Lives of the Saints. 1866.

INSTRUCTION ON THE THIRTEENTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST

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INSTRUCTION ON THE THIRTEENTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST

The Church’s Year
Rev. Fr. Leonard Goffine

Pray today at the Introit of the Mass with the, Church against her enemies: Have regard, O Lord, to thy conversant, and forsake not to the end the souls of thy poor: arise, O Lord, and judge thy cause, and forget not the voices of them that seek thee. O God, why hast thou cast us off unto the end: why is thy wrath enkindled against the sheep of thy pasture? (Ps. LXXIII.) Glory be to the Father, etc.

COLLECT Almighty and ever­lasting God, give unto us an increase of faith, hope and charity; and that we may obtain that which Thou dolt promise, make us to love that which Thou dost command. Thro’.

EPISTLE (Gal. III. 16-22.) Brethren, To Abraham were the promises made, and to his seed. He saith not, And to his seeds, as of many, but as of one: And to thy seed, which is Christ. Now this I say, that the testament which was confirmed by God, the law which was made after four hundred and thirty years doth not disannul, or make the promise of no effect. For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise. But God gave it to Abraham by promise. Why, then, was the law? It was set because of transgressions, until the seed should come to whom he made the promise, being ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator is not of one: but God is one. Was the law, then, against the promises of God? God forbid. For if there had been a law given which could give life, verily justice should have been by the law. But the scripture hath con­cluded all under sin, that the promise by the faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. Continue reading

St. Helena

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St. Helena, Empress and the Holy Youth, Agapitus, Martyr

The Roman Martyrology mentions these Saints today in terms of great praise. We will therefore say a few words about each of them. St. Helena the spouse of Constantine Chlorus, and mother of Constantine the Great, is one of the most celebrated Catholic empresses. It was greatly due to her influence that her son Constantine became converted to the Christian faith, built so many churches to the honor of the Almighty, and not only fearlessly protected the Christian faith, but spread it through many countries. By divine inspiration, she went to Jerusalem, to visit the Holy places, and seek the cross on which our Saviour had died. She happily succeeded in finding the cross, though not without great hardship. She erected many magnificent temples in the Holy Land and endowed them richly.  Continue reading