I bring to your attention four saints on the calendar listed in the 2005 Martyrologium Romanum.
1. Sancti Roberti Bellarmino, episcopi et Ecclesiae doctoris, e Societate Iesu, qui praeclare de theologicis temporis sui controversiis peculiari ac subtili habitu disputavit; cardinalis renuntiatus, ad ministerium pastorale in Ecclesia Capuana magnopere sese impendit et tandem Romae ad Apostolicae Sedis et fidei doctrinae defensionem plurimos suscept labores.
This great theologian, whose writings have not all been translated into English, had much to do with Galileo, whom I mention elsewhere today. As a cardinal living at the Roman College he used to scrub pots and pans with the students.
2. Mediolani in Liguria, depositio sancti Satyri, cuius insignia merita sanctus Ambrosius, frater eius, commemorat. Nondum Christi initiatus mysteriis, cum in naufragium incidisset, mortem non metuit, sed, ne vacuus mysteriis exiret, ex undis servatus Dei Ecclesiam requisivit; quem intima et mutua caritas fratri Ambrosio coniunxit, a quo iuxta sanctum martyrem Victorem sepultus est.
St. Ambrose (+397) was inspired by the death of his brother to write one of the works which have come down to us from his pen. De bono mortis… On the good of death… forms part of a chain of literature, a literary genre called Consolatio, Consolation Literature, from the ancient world to our own times. This was a common topic of ancient rhetoric and orations and writings of this type revolve around the fact that we are all going to die. This has been a common theme I have tackled on this blog and in preaching and conferences, especially in view of the Cross and our encounter with awesome but alluring mystery during Holy Mass.
5. Cordubae in Vandalicia Hispaniae regione, sanctae Columbae, virginis et martyris, quae in Maurorum persecutione sponte coram iudice et satrapum collegio fidem professa est et continuo ane fores palatii gladio decollata est.
Like Sts. Nunilo and Alodia, Columba was slain because she professed her Christian faith in the presence of leaders belonging to the “Religion of Peace”. Sts. Nunilo and Alodia have their feast on the same day as Bl. John Paul II… coming up in October.
7. In monasterio Montis Sancti Ruperti prope Bingium in Hassia, sanctae Hildegardis, virginis, quae, scientia rerum naturae et medicinae necnon arte musica perita, quam mystica contemplatione experta erat, pie in libris exposuit ac descripsit.
I knew an Abbess Hildegard, one of the most impressive women I have ever met. She was Abbess at Rosano in Italy, near Florence, forever and virtually ruled the Church in that area, including more than one bishop. Rosano was/is the largest community of enclosed Benedictine nuns. Listening them sing Tenebrae one year, 60 of them, entirely with the older books, was an amazing experience. What can one say about Hildegard of Bingen? You can read something about here in an article in First Things… HERE. Excerpt:
It’s an age of widespread cultural and ecclesial malaise: the State encroaches ever more into the affairs of the church; the clergy is indolent and ineffective, oft corrupt and unchaste; the laity is poorly catechized; and Gnosticism advances. It’s the twelfth century, into which a Teutonic prophetess stepped, prepared to confront the spirits of the age with visions from on high. Nihil sub sole novum, and thus it’s worth considering on the occasion of St. Hildegard of Bingen’s feast day….
You will want to put down your WDTPRS mug of Mystic Monk Coffee when reading so that you don’t lose it at Prof. Huizenga’s phrase: “Pope Benedict, himself confronted by millions of armchair antipopes…”.
There are eight other entries, all fascinating, and I could do this all day, everyday.
Listen to some texts by Hildegard: