December 3: ST. FRANCIS XAVIER, S.J.
A man with a profound love for Christ and a great apostolic zeal.
Dear brethren in Christ, Happy Feast of St. Francis Xavier!
Born in the Castle of Xavier near Sanguesa, in Navarre, Spain, St. Francis Xavier (1506-1552) studied in Paris where he met Ignatius of Loyola and in 1534 joined him. St. Francis Xavier sailed to the East Indies from Lisbon, landing at Goa. For the next 10 years he labored to bring the faith to such widely scattered peoples as the Hindus, the Malayans and the Japanese. From Japan he had dreams of going to China, but this plan was never realized. Before reaching the mainland he died. His remains are enshrined in the Church of Good Jesus in Goa.
Below you have the 2nd reading of today’s Office of Readings describing the great apostolic zeal of our saint. Let us ask his intercession so that God may grant us a a great love for Jesus and big heart to gain souls for Him and His Church.
St. Francis Xavier, pray for us, the entire Church and the world!
Fr. Rolly Arjonillo, Catholics striving for holiness, with the help of God’s grace. Kindly do us a favor by liking our FB page so we could reach and help more people. Thanks and God bless!
+++LETTER OF ST. FRANCIS XAVIER TO ST. IGNATIUS STARTS HERE+++
Born in the Castle of Xavier near Sanguesa, in Navarre, Spain, St. Francis Xavier (1506-1552) studied in Paris where he met Ignatius of Loyola and in 1534 joined him. St. Francis Xavier sailed to the East Indies from Lisbon, landing at Goa. For the next 10 years he labored to bring the faith to such widely scattered peoples as the Hindus, the Malayans and the Japanese. From Japan he had dreams of going to China, but this plan was never realized. Before reaching the mainland he died. His remains are enshrined in the Church of Good Jesus in Goa
A letter from St Francis Xavier to St Ignatius
Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel
We have visited the villages of the new converts who accepted the Christian religion a few years ago. No Portuguese live here, the country is so utterly barren and poor. The native Christians have no priests. They know only that they are Christians. There is nobody to say Mass for them; nobody to teach them the Creed, the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Commandments of God’s Law.
I have not stopped since the day I arrived. I conscientiously made the rounds of the villages. I bathed in the sacred waters all the children who had not yet been baptized. This means that I have purified a very large number of children so young that, as the saying goes, they could not tell their right hand from their left. The older children would not let me say my Office or eat or sleep until I taught them one prayer or another. Then I began to understand: “The kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
I could not refuse so devout a request without failing in devotion myself. I taught them, first the confession of faith in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, then the Apostles’ Creed, the Our Father and Hail Mary. I noticed among them persons of great intelligence. If only someone could educate them in the Christian way of life, I have no doubt that they would make excellent Christians.
Many, many people hereabouts are not becoming Christians for one reason only: there is nobody to make them Christians. Again and again I have thought of going round the universities of Europe, especially Paris, and everywhere crying out like a madman, riveting the attention of those with more learning than charity: “What a tragedy: how many souls are being shut out of heaven and falling into hell, thanks to you!”
I wish they would work as hard at this as they do at their books, and so settle their account with God for their learning and the talents entrusted to them.
This thought would certainly stir most of them to meditate on spiritual realities, to listen actively to what God is saying to them. They would forget their own desires, their human affairs, and give themselves over entirely to God’s will and his choice. They would cry out with all their heart: Lord, I am here! What do you want me to do? Send me anywhere you like – even to India.
℟. The harvest is rich but the labourers are few,* so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest.
℣. You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and then you will be my witnesses to the ends of the earth;* so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest.
Let us pray.
Lord God, you won so many peoples to yourself by the preaching of Saint Francis Xavier. Give us the same zeal that he had for the faith, and let your Church rejoice and see the virtue and number of her children increase throughout the world. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Let us praise the Lord.
– Thanks be to God.
READING SOURCE: http://www.universalis.com/