Her Doctrine and Morals

The Feast of St. John the Evangelist

27 December 2015


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Dear Friend,

Our Holy Mother, the Church, desires to show us the intimates of Jesus Christ, through the feast days that are placed closest to the celebration of His birth. Yesterday, we saw the remembrance of the first martyr, St. Stephen. There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for a friend, and we see this love in St. Stephen. The martyrs have always held the first place in the Church, as they have truly followed Our Master, even to the sacrifice of their lives.

Next to the grace of martyrdom, God holds near and dear to Himself the grace of virginity. Virginity is also a kind of continual martyrdom. Each and every day, and often many times a day, the virgin denies the legitimate as well as the illegitimate desires of the body. In this manner, he makes himself a living "martyr" to God. Next to the blood red vestments of the martyr are the pure snow white vestments of the virgin. Hence, we see St. John right next to St. Stephen as the closest intimates in the celebration of Jesus' birth.

St. John was a blood relative of Jesus, and was the youngest of the Apostles. He was the beloved of the Lord. It is true that St. Peter loved Jesus more than the rest, as is recorded in the Gospel of the thrice elicited declaration of love; however, it was St. John that Jesus loved most. When St. John left everything to follow Jesus, we see that he offered more of life than the others -- simply because he was the youngest. He left his fishing nets, and his father, but tradition also tells us that he left behind a betrothed woman. This sacrifice of St. John elicited the great love of God for himself. It was not his familial ties, but rather the self-sacrifice of St. John that made God love him more than the others.

It was St. John that was permitted to rest his head on the Heart of Jesus at the Last Supper; and it was St. John that was entrusted to the Blessed Mother, as well as she was entrusted to him, as Jesus died upon the Cross. St. John was the last of the Apostles to physically die, but he had died to himself many times before, through the sacrifices made in self-denial as well as in the practice of virtues — especially that of virginity. After Saints Peter and Paul had been martyred and the other apostles had already received their rewards, heresies were entering the Church. It was to St. John that appeals were made. St. John is the author of the fourth Gospel in which we see clearly laid out and dogmatically defined that Jesus is the Second Person of the Trinity — true God from all eternity — He is The Word made Flesh. We, therefore, honor St. John with the title of Evangelist. St. John has written Epistles for our instruction and so we honor him as a doctor and theologian. St. John was given the task of writing the Apocalypse, and so we honor him with the title of prophet. St. John was scourged and dropped in boiling oil, and even though God prevented him from dying from this, we still honor him with the title of martyr. Above all these things, however, the greatest glory of St. John, must be that which caused him to be the beloved of the Lord — his perpetual virginity.

As we honor St. John today, it is important that we honor him as God has honored him. It is said that, "imitation is the greatest manner of honoring someone." Our world today presents the virginal state of life as a foolish impossibility, or as a sign of weakness and immaturity. This is truly a demonic inversion of truth and reality. St. John as well as the lives of many other saints, and even of ordinary Catholics, show us clearly that the virginal life is possible with the grace of God. Taking up the virginal state is not an easy endeavor and requires the grace of God, nevertheless, it is the highest and therefore the most rewarding vocation. Rather than, ridicule or look down upon those who strive for the virginal state, we should hold them in highest esteem. These are the true heroes that should be presented to our children.

Our world is obviously under demonic influences as it gives almost everything some kind of sexual connotation. Sexual activity is promoted as something mature, educated, cultivated, and noble. Every sexual perversion is made to be seen as normal and acceptable. Sexual fetishes and fantasies are not only made acceptable, but are promoted and encouraged. Our children are taught and encouraged to "explore" their "sexuality." The only types of sexuality that appear to be looked down upon are the ones that God endorses, of: virginity, or monogamous heterosexual marriage.

As we honor St. John today, let us beg of him his aid in living up to the chastity for the state of life that God has called us to. Let us pray not only for ourselves, but for all the children in the world today — especially for those we have spiritual ties to. In the end, however, it is not enough to pray; we must do our part as well. We must do what we can to stem the tide of the sexual perversities of our day. Not only avoid them, but decry them as loudly and constantly as we can. We must see, and help others to see, that it is the weak and the immature that follow such perverted temptations; and that it is truly the noble, mature, and the strong who practice the virtue of chastity; but especially the virtue of virginity.

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