Friday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Saint of the day
Saint Paul the Hermit (c.230-342)
Saint Paul the Hermit was raised in a well-to-do Christian family. He was well educated and could speak both Greek and Egyptian. Sadly, he was orphaned at the age of 15. When the persecutions of Decius broke out a few years later, Paul fled to a cave in the desert to escape what he felt was certain persecution, for his brother-in-law wanted to turn him in for being a Christian in order to gain control of his possessions. Paul's plan was to return home once the persecutions ended, but he found the life of solitude and prayer in the cave so appealing that he decided to stay. He lived in the cave for 90 years, with a neighboring stream giving him water and a palm tree providing him with food and clothing. Legend has it that after 21 years a bird began bringing him half of a loaf of bread each day to eat. One day, Saint Anthony found Paul in his cave, sent by God to find a man more perfect than himself. It is said that when Anthony visited Paul the bird who brought Paul bread brought a whole loaf that day to accommodate his visitor. Just as Paul predicted, Anthony would come back to bury him. Saint Paul the Hermit is said to have lived to an incredibly old age, 112 years old. He is the patron saint of San Pablo City, Philippines, and is known as the "First Hermit."
Saint Paul the Hermit discovered the power and peace of solitary prayer. Do you reserve a few minutes each day to spend some quiet, prayerful time with the Lord? Strive to make prayer a more important part of your life.
Loving God, may my prayer to you always be intentional and sincere. Help me to focus. (Taken from “Good News Day by Day: Bible Reflections for Teens.”)
Liturgical season information
Place in Year: Ordinary Time
Color of decorations and priest's vestments: Green
Reading I: Heb 4:1-5, 11
Responsorial Psalm: 78:3 And 4Bc, 6C-7, 8
Alleluia: Lk 7:16
Gospel: Mk 2:1-12View complete readings on USCCB.org