Saint of the Day ~ August 29

MARTYRDOM OF SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST (c.4 B.C.-c.27), prophet and martyr – Patron saint of Baptisms, converts, monastic life, the Jordan River and San Juan, Puerto Rico

Today, the universal Church honors the Martyrdom or Passion of Saint John the Baptist, last of the Old Testament prophets and the precursor or forerunner of our Lord, Jesus Christ, and who was called by God to “Make straight the way of the Lord” (John 1:23b).

As an adult, he lived as a hermit in the wilderness. After the Spirit inspired him, he went about preaching that people should repent from their sins and be baptized in preparation for the coming of the Messiah.

King Herod imprisoned John because John had condemned Herod for his adulterous union with his brother’s wife, Herodias, whose husband was still alive. In Herodias’ contempt for John, she contrived to make Herod imprison him and took advantage of an unexpected opportunity to obtain, through her daughter Salome, the beheading of the prophet.

John died a martyr’s death for proclaiming the Truth, never compromising the Law of God for personal safety or acceptance. In this, Jesus’ words truly strike to the heart of who John was, “Amen, I say to you, among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist” (Matthew 11:11a).

Please read today’s “Meditation for the Day” for a further reflection upon the importance which Saint John the Baptist holds in our own life of faith.

We commemorate this special Memorial on August 29.

(From catholicnewsagency.com, saints.sqpn.com, americancatholic.org, catholicculture.org and newadvent.org)

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PRAYER

(The following prayer is from the Roman Breviary from the Proper for the Martyrdom of Saint John the Baptist)

“God our Father, You called John the Baptist to be the herald of Your Son’s Birth and Death. As he gave his life in witness to Your Truth and Justice, so may we strive to profess our faith in Your Gospel.

“Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

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