Jul 20 – Memorial for St. Apollinaris, Bishop & Martyr
According to tradition, Apollinaris was a native of Antioch in the Roman Province of Syria. He was made the first Bishop of Ravenna by St. Peter during the persecutions of Emperor Vespasian (or Nero, depending on the source).
On his way out of the city, he was identified, arrested as being the leader, tortured and martyred by being run through with a sword. Centuries after his death, he appeared in a vision to St. Romuald. He was a noted miracle worker, and is considered especially effective against gout and epilepsy.
Mic 6:1-4, 6-8
“O my people, what have I done to you, how have I been a burden to you? Answer me.”
Human beings are created in the image and likeness of God and from the beginning. Before creating the first man, God deposited all the needs of man on earth and placed him in charge, and finally inserted in him the chip of the will to choose between good and evil. God’s sanctifying spirit redefines and repositions us to face the reality about doing the will of God; it is the only source of salvation.
Events in our world today — anger, resentment, killings, persecutions, injustice, acrimony, hatred, terrorism, violence, gay marriage, disobedience to God, sin in its various tasking forms have moved God to ask: “O my people, what have I done to you, how have I been a burden to you? Answer me.”
The United Nations reports that there are 195 countries in the world — 54 in Africa; 48 in Asia; 44 in Europe, 33 in Latin America and the Caribbean; 14 in Oceania and 2 in Northern America. Of this record, the Global Index 2016, reports that only 10 counties are free from conflict. This is the gloomy and complex nature of the world we all live in; it means the world is in turmoil and drifting away from God’s purpose.
And in December 2019, the tragedy in Wuhan, China took the world by surprise with the coronavirus pandemic explosion unifying the world in this common tragedy. There are lots of claims and counter claims on the evolution of the virus with propounded contentions that it could be a result of human experimental errors and intentional biological attacks; other theories insist it came from natural fallouts because sin is ruining our world today. In any case, the world is bleeding and needs God’s intervention; God wants to know why the world is acting wrong. He demands that the world return to Him.
(Today’s Oxygen by Julius Otusorochukwu Dike)
Prayer: Lord, please help us, we are on our knees pleading for forgiveness for our sins, we are weakened the more knowing we are greater sinners than ever thought; we rely on you, Lord. Enhance and sustain our faith so that we will repent and return to enjoy your sanctifying grace. We have now resolved to return to trust in you for you are the owner and controller of human existence.
Thanksgiving: Dear Lord, we have come to thank you for you are a forgiving God; we thank you for forgiving us our sins that are gravely placed before you, we thank you for relieving us of the pains we are going through in the world today; we will remain faithful to you as long as we live. Thank you, Lord. Amen.