Thursday, August 9, 2018

St. Lawrence, Deacon & Martyr, Friday, 10-08-18

2 Cor 9:6-10 / John 12:24-26

Today the Church celebrates the feast of St. Lawrence, who was only a deacon at the time of his martyrdom in year 258.

In that year, on the 6th August, Pope Sixtus II and four other deacons was captured while celebrating Mass in the catacombs, and subsequently martyred.

The administration of the Church of left to St. Lawrence and he was ordered to surrender the riches and the wealth of the Church in three days time.

He quickly distributed as much Church property to the poor as possible, and on the third day, he gathered the poor, the crippled, the blind and the suffering and presented them to the authorities and he told them that these were the true treasures of the Church.

Needless to say he was immediately sentenced to death, and tradition has it that he was grilled or roasted to death, hence his association with the gridiron, which was the instrument of torture for grilling people to death.

What was remarkable was that it was a slow painful and horrible way to be tortured to death, and yet St. Lawrence persevered to the end.

His martyrdom portrays the reality of what Jesus said in the gospel: If a man serves me, he must follow me, wherever I am, my servant will be there too. If anyone serves me, my Father will honour him.

St. Lawrence served Christ with his life right up till the end. In doing so he gave us an example of giving up his life so that it will yield a rich harvest in the hands of the Lord.

May our lives also be like seeds of love in the hands of the Divine Sower, and wherever we are sown, may we also bear a rich harvest of love for the Lord.