ST IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH SATURDAY OF THE TWENTY-EIGHTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME OCTOBER 17, 2020
R. Alleluia, alleluia. The Spirit of truth will testify to me, says the Lord, and you also will testify. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
“The Spirit of truth will testify to me, says the Lord, and you also will testify.”
St. Ignatius of Antioch is considered one of the apostolic fathers of the Catholic Church for his literary contributions clarifying the faith. He was a disciple of St. John and the third bishop of Antioch, whose second century writings help to document the authentic theological faith declared by the Catholic church. He is given credit as the first to use the word “catholic” in describing the Church. He wrote to change the Jewish holy day, Saturday, to Christianity’s day of worship as Sunday. And, he wrote about the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.
St. Ignatius was very passionate in following Christ, and welcomed his martyr’s death for the faith. During the reign of the Roman emperor Trajan he was arrested in Antioch and escorted by soldiers to die in the Roman coliseum, where he would be fed to lions. This fateful trip produced seven letters written by St. Ignatius to the Church explaining the faith and fighting against heretics. His willingness to give his life for the faith was evident as he was quoted to say, “I am writing to all the churches to let it be known that I will gladly die for God if only you do not stand in my way. I plead with you: show me no untimely kindness. Let me be food for the wild beasts, for they are my way to God.”
There is no greater testimony for a Christian to give all to God. Let us reflect how we give our all to Christ. May St. Ignatius pray for us and encourage us to live the “Spirit of truth”.