ST. PETER CHRYSOLOGUS
- December 4th -
Peter was born in Italy and was educated by the Bishop of his own city. Even as a young boy, Peter understood that a man is truly great only if he can control his passions and put on the spirit of Christ.
When he grew up, St. Peter was made the Archbishop of Ravenna, and he worked hard to wipe out the paganism still practiced in his diocese.
It is as a preacher that St. Peter became famous. Indeed, "Chrysologus" means "golden word." Yet his sermons were all short, because he was afraid to tire his hearers. Besides that, these sermons are not especially unusual of beautiful in style. But St. Peter's message was more valuable than gold, and he preached with such enthusiasm and fire that people listened to him breathlessly.
In his sermons, St. Peter urged everyone to receive Jesus often in Holy Communion, so that the Body of our Lord might be the daily food for their souls.
This good Archbishop also worked for the unity of all members of the Catholic Church. He tried to prevent heresies and to keep peace.
For his wonderful sermons, so rich in teaching, Pope Benedict XIII made St. Peter a Doctor of the Church.
I will pray for preachers and I will listen to the Sunday sermon with attention.
~ Saints for Young People, Imprimatur, no year listed ~
You can find a coloring picture of St. Peter here.
Barbara was the daughter of a pagan, Dioscorus, who placed her in a high and beautiful tower surrounded by lovely gardens, and sent many philosophers, poets, and scholars to teach her. She soon realized that polytheism was not true, and consulted Origen, one of the best of the early Christian apologists. He sent her his disciple Valentinium, who instructed and baptized her. Barbara threw all the statues of pagan gods and goddesses out a window in her tower, traced the sign of the cross everywhere on the walls, and had a third window cut in honor of the Holy Trinity.
This made her father very angry. He had her taken from the tower, but she escaped to the mountains as he was about to kill her. He followed her and brought her back, handing her over to Marcian, who a master at the art of torturing Christians. She was beaten with rods, torn with iron hooks, and suffered many other torments. In the end, her father dragged her out of the city and cut off her head. As Barbara was being carried to heaven by the angel, her father was struck dead by lightning.
Collect of her Mass:
O God, who among the marvels of Thy power has given the victory of martyrdom even to the weaker sex, grant in Thy mercy that we who keep the birthday of Blessed Barbara, Thy virgin and martyr, may, by her example, draw nearer to Thee. Through Our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen.
A coloring picture of St. Barbara can be found here.