Sts. Peter Baptist and Companions – Feb 06 – Homily – Fr John Lawrence

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Fr John Lawrence gives the homily at Bloomington, IN, on Feb 06, 2024, on the lives of Sts. Peter Baptist and Companions, martyrs of Japan, emphasizing their deep faith and the enduring impact of their martyrdom on Catholic history.

Father commemorates the first mass execution of Christians in Japan, highlighting the spread of Catholicism since St. Francis Xavier's arrival in 1549, leading to about 300,000 converts by 1597. Despite initial successes, Christianity faced opposition from Buddhist monks and skepticism from officials, fearing ulterior motives behind missionary activities. St. Philip of Jesus, originally from Mexico City, exemplifies an unlikely saint, transitioning from a rebellious youth to a Franciscan priest. His journey took an unexpected turn when, en route to Mexico for ordination, his ship was stranded in Japan, leading to his and 25 others' martyrdom in Nagasaki under Hideyoshi's orders. This group included Franciscans and Japanese Jesuits like St. Paul Miki, who faithfully continued to preach until their execution. The homily underscores their unwavering faith and the powerful witness of their martyrdom, leaving a lasting legacy of Christian perseverance and sacrifice.

Ave Maria!

Mass: Sts. Peter Baptist and Companions - Mem -
Readings: Tuesday 5th Week of Ordinary Time -
1st: 1ki 8:22-23, 27-30
Resp: psa 84:3-5, 10-11
Gsp: mar 7:1-13

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