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James the Greater was the son of Zebedee and Salome, one of the women at the tomb on Easter morning, (Matt.27:56, Mark 15:40, 16:1) and the brother of John – probably the elder of the two.

He is called “the greater” to distinguish him from James the Lesser, who was probably shorter in stature.

There is evidence in Scriptures that these two brothers were cousins of the Lord, which may explain Our Lord entrusting His mother to John as He was dying.

Both James and John were probably of a fiery temperament for which they were called “sons of thunder.” They once wished to call fire upon a city, for which Our Lord rebuked them. (Luke 9:51-6)

James was one of the first apostles called by Jesus, and was one of the three selected to witness His transfiguration.

James was apostle in Iberia, in the region of present-day Spain.

Ancient tradition ascertains that when praying one night in the year 40, the Virgin Mother, then still living, appeared to him on
the banks of the River Ebro to encourage him in his difficult mission.

She was accompanied by a multitude of angels who bore with them a marble pillar on top of which was a small statue of her holding the Child Jesus.

She bid James build a shrine where the pillar was to be placed, which he did, the first shrine dedicated to the Mother of God on earth.

Today, the sacred pillar, still in the same spot, is enshrined in the great Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar in Zaragoza.

James returned to Judea after this apparition, and was the first apostle to suffer martyrdom. He died by the sword in Jerusalem at the command of Herod Agrippa in the year 44.

His relics rest in the city of Compostela in northern Spain, the final destination of the famous pilgrims of the “Camino de Compostela.”

 


 

 

 

Quote of the day

DAILY QUOTE for March 31, 2020

The beginning of evil is the lack of vigilance. St. Poemen...

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March 31

 

The beginning of evil

is the lack of vigilance.

St. Poemen


My Mother, I will stand with you on OCTOBER 10, 2020

Saint of the day

SAINT OF THE DAY

St. Guy of Pomposa

Even his father and his brother joined the monastery. So man...

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St. Guy of Pomposa

Guy was born near Ravenna in northern Italy to parents who took great pride in him. Primarily to give them pleasure, he was meticulous in his dress and personal appearance. Still, one day during a festival, realizing the vanity of this way of being, and taken with deep compunction, he stripped himself of his fine garments and gave them all away to the poor.

To his parents’ further mortification, their son donned shabby garments and departed for Rome, where he received the tonsure.

On his return, he placed himself under the direction of a hermit named Martin, who lived alone on a small island in the River Po. After three years of directing Guy, the hermit sent him to the Abbey of Pomposa to learn the ways of monastic life.

There Guy so advanced in virtue that he quickly rose to high office, and was elected abbot. Such was his reputation and so many flocked to the abbey that he was obliged to build another. Even his father and his brother joined the monastery.

At certain times of the year Abbot Guy would retire into solitude a few miles from his monastery and there would submit his body to severe austerities. Particularly during the forty days of Lent the austerities were such as to resemble tortures, and yet, he was extraordinarily tender toward his monks who were devoted to him.

Guy did not escape the persecution which often comes to those seeking holiness. For unknown reasons, the Archbishop of Ravenna had developed a hatred for the holy abbot and determined to destroy his monasteries. When Guy learned of the imminent attack, he fasted for three days, joined in this mortification by the entire community of monks. When the archbishop arrived with his soldiers, he was met by Guy with such humility and respect, that he was overwhelmed and asked the abbot's pardon.

Towards the close of his life Guy again withdrew to his solitary hermitage. The Emperor Henry III, who had come to Italy to consult with the holy abbot, summoned him to Piacenza. Though he was unwilling to do so, the aged abbot obeyed, taking a tender farewell from his brothers whom he said he would see no more. Attacked by a sudden illness in Borgo San Donnino near Parma, he died three days later.

Both Parma and Pomposa claimed his relics, but the emperor settled the dispute by having his body translated to the Church of St. John the Evangelist at Speyer in Germany.

Weekly Story

WEEKLY STORY

I turned to God, but God seems to remain deaf to me. Why is...

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Why Doesn't God Answer My Prayer?

Question:  I pray and pray, but I feel as if God is not listening. We always had a good, peaceful family life, but these last years have been tough. We don’t seem to be getting along and our finances have taken a turn for the worse.

I am so anxious about this situation that, not having anyone to turn to, I turned to God.

But God seems to remain deaf to me. Why is that? In addition, what do I say to certain people, agnostics and atheists, who laugh at prayer, saying it is nonsensical and only a figment of the imagination with no real value?

Answer:  God is faithful to His promises, and God promised to answer our prayers. “And I tell you, ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened” (Luke 11:9–10).

If God promises to answer our prayers, He will do so infallibly. But in prayer there are two sides: he who asks and He Who gives.

Our part is to ask. How must we ask?

Saint Alphonsus Liguori, a Doctor of the Church, teaches in his book Prayer, the Great Means of Salvation that prayer must be persevering and humble.

So many times we hear people saying: “Oh, I used to ask God for this and that and the other, but He never gave it to me. Now, ten years later, how glad I am that He didn’t!”

One thing is certain: God will not fail to answer a humble and perseverance prayer. Whether He chooses to grant what we ask immediately or make us wait, we must trust that He, regardless of appearances, is doing us good. What we think is good and what He thinks is good may be two different things: “My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor your ways My ways” (Isa. 55:8), but here is where we must abandon ourselves to His beneficent will. Our part is to be patient, calm and, above all, faithful, because this is the time for testing and later will come the time for full enjoyment.


Answering Atheists and Agnostics
As for atheists and agnostics, their skepticism proceeds from the fact that they, respectively, deny God’s existence or deny men’s capacity to know God.

In this case, we can only express our regret over their ignorance of this Supreme Being, our omnipotent Creator and loving Savior.

We may direct them to a few sources that may help in their search for the truth of His existence. Atheism and agnosticism can only be sustained in ignorance or ill will because the evidence of God’s existence is overwhelming.

Moreover, God will not hide Himself from those who seek Him sincerely and unconditionally.

Another consideration pertaining to non-believers is this: If God were to grant us absolutely everything we ask at a moment’s notice, such people might start believing purely out of self-interest.

They would look at God as a wand-wielding wizard. And God Our Lord is infinitely more than that. He wants us to know, love, and serve Him for Himself so that He can treat us as children and heirs and grant us unending happiness in Heaven.

"My impression is that the Rosary is of the greatest value not only according to the words of Our Lady of Fatima, but according to the effects of the Rosary one sees throughout history. My impression is that Our Lady wanted to give ordinary people, who might not know how to pray, this simple method of getting closer to God."  Sister Lucia, one of the seers of Fatima.

 

Order Your Rosary Guide Booklet today!

 

I turned to God, but God seems to remain deaf to me. Why is that? In addition, what do I say to certain people, agnostics and atheists,

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