Feb 04th - Joseph of Leonessa
When we think of Church councils, we often think about the big names: Gregory, Athanasius, and the like. Who we do not usually think about are the day to day people down in the trenches trying to promulgate the teachings from those councils into the daily lives of the faithful.
Joseph is one such person. Aside from the many things he did: his devotion to the poor, sick, and imprisoned, his selfless and dangerous political work, his austerity and humility, he also went around trying to help those same poor and humble laity, the fallen away, the foreigner, and lax to understand not only the glories of the Faith but also the teachings of the Council of Trent, trying to pull people back into the fold with a deeper commitment and understanding. That impresses me mightily.
Jesus went around to all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and curing every disease and illness. At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” ...Jesus sent out these twelve after instructing them thus, “Do not go into pagan territory or enter a Samaritan town. Go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, drive out demons. Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give. Do not take gold or silver or copper for your belts; no sack for the journey, or a second tunic, or sandals, or walking stick. The laborer deserves his keep.
-- Matthew 9:35-38; 10:5-10
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