King Edward : King and Confessor

Discussion in 'Sundays and Feastdays ' started by Admin, Oct 13, 2014.

  1. Admin

    Admin Moderator Staff Member



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    St. Edward, King and Confessor
    (by Father Francis Xavier Weninger, 1876)

    St. Edward III., grandson of the holy King and Martyr, Edward, was born in England, but educated in Normandy, by his maternal uncle, as the Danes had conquered and devastated England. In the midst of the sensuality of the world and the temptations to all possible frivolities, Edward, while still very young, endeavored to lead so retired and innocent a life, that he was admired by all, and was called the Angel of the court. He took no pleasure in those amusements in which young princes generally delight, but found his greatest joy in prayer and study. His devotion at Church during holy Mass was truly wonderful; and no time spent there seemed to him too long. He had the greatest horror for everything that was in the least contrary to angelical chastity. No immodest word ever passed his lips, and none was ever uttered in his presence without being severely censured by him. The long absence from his home and kingdom he bore with the most admirable patience, and when, one day, some courtiers said to him that he must regain his kingdom by force of arms, he said, that he did not desire a crown which must be won by shedding blood. But when the Danes had been driven from English soil, and peace restored throughout the land, the nobility recalled Edward from exile and placed him upon the throne.

    The new King bestowed his first care on the restoration of the prosperity of the kingdom, and to this end, he endeavored to revive the worship of the true God and to reform the corrupted morals of his subjects. The revenues taken from the church were restored to it; churches were repaired or rebuilt, together with many monasteries for religious men and women, whose duty it would be to restore the old religion and the fear of God throughout the land; for he used to say: "The most efficacious means to secure the happiness of a country is religion and the fear of God: for the well-being of a state depends mostly on the prosperity of its Church." The nobility demanded that Edward should marry, that the kingdom might not be left without an heir to the throne. Edward, who had already made a vow of perpetual chastity, but was unwilling to reveal it, consented to their wish, and married Edith, the daughter of Count Godwin, but lived in continency until his end. To his subjects he was a most perfect model of all Christian virtues, and cared for their well-being like a tender father. He manifested special love to the poor and the orphans, whence he received the glorious title of Guardian of the orphans and Father of the poor. He was a wise and just administrator, gave every one free access to him, and allowed no one to depart without relief.

    His leisure hours were spent in prayer and works of charity. He was never better satisfied than when he had almost emptied the royal treasury into the hands of the poor. Once, during holy Mass, at which he daily assisted with great devotion, he had the happiness of seeing our Lord in a most beautiful form surrounded by heavenly brightness. On Pentecost-day, God revealed to him, during holy Mass, that the king of Denmark, who intented to invade England, and who was already on sea, had perished. One day, while on his way to Church, he met a poor paralytic man, who was creeping slowly to the sacred edifice. The holy king took him upon his shoulders, and carried him thus into the house of God. This admirable work of charity God rewarded by immediately bestowing health upon the poor paralytic.

    Besides the Queen of Heaven, the holy king specially honored St. John, as it is known that the latter lived always in chastity. In honor of this Saint, the king had made a vow to refuse nothing which should be asked of him in the holy Apostle's name. It happened that St. John himself appeared to him in the form of a beggar. The king, having no money about him, took a ring from his finger, and gave it to the beggar. Some days afterwards, St. John appeared to two pilgrims and gave them the ring, with the request that they would take it to the king and tell him that he would die in six months, and be led into heaven by the holy Apostle. The king received this message joyfully, ordered prayers throughout the kingdom for himself and redoubled his works of charity and devotion. On the day appointed to him, after a short illness, and having devoutly received the holy Sacraments, he gave his spotless soul into the hands of his Creator, in the 36th year of his age, in 1066. Thirty-six years after his death, his holy body was exhumed and was found entirely incorrupt, while it exhaled so delicious a fragrance, that all who were present greatly rejoiced.


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    Last edited: Oct 12, 2016
  2. Admin

    Admin Moderator Staff Member

    A Homily by St. Gregory the Pope

    Dearly beloved brethren, the lesson of the Holy Gospel, which has just been read to you, is plain. But lest the plain should perchance seem to some of you to be a mountain, we will go through it so quickly and easily that they which have not already explored it may come to know something about it, and they which already know it need not be wearied. The Lord saith: Let your loins be girded about. We gird our loins about when by continency we master the lustful inclination of the flesh. But it is of small profit to abstain from evil unless we also strive right earnestly to do good works. Therefore the Lord added that we should keep our lights burning, that is, by good works should give a good example to our neighbour; concerning which the Lord saith: Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

    Here then are two commandments, to gird our loins about, and to keep our lights burning; which is to keep our bodies in chastity and to do all our work in the daylight of truth. For the one without the other can in no wise please our Redeemer. We cannot please him by good works if we persist in the pollutions of lust, nor can we please him by our chastity if we do no good works for others. Chastity is not a great thing without good works, and good works without chastity are nothing worth. And if any man would do both, he must needs set his hope on our fatherland above. For of what good is it to refrain from evil in hope of being honoured in this present world?

    And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that, when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately. The Lord cometh at the hour of judgment. He knocketh when by the pains of sickness he warneth us that death is nigh. To him we open immediately, if we receive him in love. Whosoever he be that feareth to go forth from the body is such an one as cannot open readily to the Judge when he knocketh, for he dreadeth to see that Judge, whom he knoweth that he hath despised. But whosoever is confident through hope and by reason of works done for God, when he heareth the Judge knock, openeth to him immediately, for to such an one that coming is blessed. Yea, when the hour of death is at hand, such an one is of good cheer in expectation of the blessedness which will follow on judgment.

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  3. Admin

    Admin Moderator Staff Member