Reformed Churchmen

We are Confessional Calvinists and a Prayer Book Church-people. In 2012, we remembered the 350th anniversary of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer; also, we remembered the 450th anniversary of (Bp., Salisbury) John Jewel's sober, scholarly, and Reformed An Apology of the Church of England. In 2013, we remembered the publication of the "Heidelberg Catechism" and the influence of Reformed theologians in England, including Heinrich Bullinger's Decades. For 2014: Tyndale's NT translation. For 2015, John Roger, Rowland Taylor and Bishop John Hooper's martyrdom, burned at the stakes. Books of the month. November 2014: Calvin's magnum opus, the "Institutes of Christian Religion" at: http://www.amazon.com/Calvin-Institutes-Christian-Religion-Volume/dp/0664220282/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1415127336&sr=8-2&keywords=calvin%27s+institutes. December 2014: Alan Jacob's "Book of Common Prayer" at: http://www.amazon.com/Book-Common-Prayer-Biography-Religious/dp/0691154813/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1417814005&sr=8-1&keywords=jacobs+book+of+common+prayer. January 2015. A.F. Pollard's "Thomas Cranmer and the English Reformation: 1489-1556" at: http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Cranmer-English-Reformation-1489-1556/dp/1592448658/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1420055574&sr=8-1&keywords=A.F.+Pollard+Cranmer

Saturday, January 31, 2015

31 January 2015 A.D. (Pope) Urban II: Quotations on Islam from Notable Non-Muslims


31 January 2015 A.D.  (Pope) Urban II: Quotations on Islam from Notable Non-Muslims

 


 


Besides Pope Urban, there are 88 additional quotes from other leaders regarding Jihadi-Reprobates, see:  http://reformationanglicanism.blogspot.com/2014/08/25-august-2014-ad-quotations-on-islam_25.html


Urban II



Pope Blessed Urban II (ca. 1035 – 29 July 1099), born Otho de Lagery (alternatively: Otto, Odo or Eudes), was Pope from 12 March 1088 until his death on 29 July 1099. Regarding the first Crusade: 

 

“Freshly quickened by the divine correction, you must apply the strength of your righteousness to another matter which concerns you as well as God. For your brethren who live in the east are in urgent need of your help, and you must hasten to give them the aid which has often been promised them. For, as the most of you have heard, the Turks and Arabs [Muslims] have attacked them and have conquered the territory of Romania [the Greek empire] as far west as the shore of the Mediterranean and the Hellespont, which is called the Arm of St. George. They have occupied more and more of the lands of those Christians, and have overcome them in seven battles. They have killed and captured many, and have destroyed the churches and devastated the empire. If you permit them to continue thus for awhile with impurity, the faithful of God will be much more widely attacked by them. On this account I, or rather the Lord, beseech you as Christ's heralds to publish this everywhere and to persuade all people of whatever rank, foot-soldiers and knights, poor and rich, to carry aid promptly to those Christians and to destroy that vile race from the lands of our friends.[124]

 

AND NOW, for illustrative quotes on Islam from the son and grandson of Kenyan born Muslims, a world class and credentialed historian, and a man notable for his robust and unimpeachable honesty and integrity, Imam Barack Hussein Obama, see: 


20 Quotes By Barack Obama About Islam and Mohammed

#1 “The future must not belong to those who slander the Prophet of Islam”

#2 “The sweetest sound I know is the Muslim call to prayer”

#3 “We will convey our deep appreciation for the Islamic faith, which has done so much over the centuries to shape the world — including in my own country.”

#4 “As a student of history, I also know civilization’s debt to Islam.”

#5 “Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance.

#6 “Islam has always been part of America”

#7 “we will encourage more Americans to study in Muslim communities

#8 “These rituals remind us of the principles that we hold in common, and Islam’s role in advancing justice, progress, tolerance, and the dignity of all human beings.”

#9 “America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles of justice and progress, tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.”

#10 “I made clear that America is not – and never will be – at war with Islam.”

#11 “Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism – it is an important part of promoting peace.”

#12 “So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed”

#13 “In ancient times and in our times, Muslim communities have been at the forefront of innovation and education.”

#14 “Throughout history, Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality.”

#15 “Ramadan is a celebration of a faith known for great diversity and racial equality

#16 “The Holy Koran tells us, ‘O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another.’”

#17 “I look forward to hosting an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan here at the White House later this week, and wish you a blessed month.”

#18 “We’ve seen those results in generations of Muslim immigrants – farmers and factory workers, helping to lay the railroads and build our cities, the Muslim innovators who helped build some of our highest skyscrapers and who helped unlock the secrets of our universe.”

#19 “That experience guides my conviction that partnership between America and Islam must be based on what Islam is, not what it isn’t. And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.”

#20 “I also know that Islam has always been a part of America’s story.”


AND NOW, for more scholarly quotes from Imam Obama, see the URL.


                                  

OR, beside Imam Obama’s insights above, a few Quranic verses that have insired many Islamo-fascists.

 

Qur'an 3:32—Say: Obey Allah and the Apostle; but if they turn back, then surely Allah does not love the unbelievers.

 

Qur'an 48:29—Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and those who are with him are severe against disbelievers, and merciful among themselves. You see them bowing and falling down prostrate (in prayer), seeking Bounty from Allah and (His) Good Pleasure. The mark of them (i.e. of their Faith) is on their faces (foreheads) from the traces of (their) prostration (during prayers). This is their description in the Taurat (Torah). But their description in the Injeel (Gospel) is like a (sown) seed which sends forth its shoot, then makes it strong, it then becomes thick, and it stands straight on its stem, delighting the sowers that He may enrage the disbelievers with them. Allah has promised those among them who believe (i.e. all those who follow Islamic Monotheism, the religion of Prophet Muhammad SAW till the Day of Resurrection) and do righteous good deeds, forgiveness and a mighty reward (i.e. Paradise).

Qur'an 4:24—Also (forbidden are) women already married, except those (captives and slaves) whom your right hands possess. Thus hath Allah ordained (Prohibitions) against you: Except for these, all others are lawful, provided ye seek (them in marriage) with gifts from your property—desiring chastity, not lust, seeing that ye derive benefit from them, give them their dowers (at least) as prescribed; but if, after a dower is prescribed, agree mutually (to vary it), there is no blame on you, and Allah is All-knowing, All-wise.

Qur'an 5:33—The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His apostle and strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides or they should be imprisoned; this shall be as a disgrace for them in this world, and in the hereafter they shall have a grievous chastisement.

Qur'an 9:5—Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

Qur'an 9:29—Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day [notice it says "fight those who do not believe," not "fight people who are attacking you"], nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the Religion of Truth, from among the People of the Book [the people of the book are Jews and Christians], until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.

Qur'an 9:73—O Prophet! strive hard against the unbelievers and the hypocrites and be unyielding to them; and their abode is hell, and evil is the destination.

Qur'an 9:111—Surely Allah has bought of the believers their persons and their property for this, that they shall have the garden; they fight in Allah's way, so they slay and are slain; a promise which is binding on Him in the Taurat and the Injeel and the Quran; and who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah? Rejoice therefore in the pledge which you have made; and that is the mighty achievement.

Qur'an 47:35—Be not weary and fainthearted, crying for peace, when ye should be uppermost: for Allah is with you, and will never put you in loss for your (good) deeds. 

Qur'an 2:106—Whatever communications We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, We bring one better than it or like it. Do you not know that Allah has power over all things?

From the 1662 Book of Common Prayer, the Collect for Good Friday:

O MERCIFUL God, who hast made all men, and hatest nothing that thou hast made, nor wouldest the death of a sinner, but rather that he should be converted and live; Have mercy upon all Jews, Turks, Infidels, and Hereticks, and take from them all ignorance, hardness of heart, and contempt of thy Word; and so fetch them home, blessed Lord, to thy flock, that they may be saved among the remnant of the true Israelites, and be made one fold under one shepherd, Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen. 

31 January 1945 A.D. 12-Man Rifle Execution of Deserter-in-Time-of-War SGT Bergdahl…Er, Oops, PVT Eddie Slovik


31 January 1945 A.D.  12-Man Rifle Execution of Deserter-in-Time-of-War SGT Bergdahl…Er, Oops, PVT Eddie Slovik

Editors. “The execution of Pvt. Slovik.”  History.com. N.d. http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/the-execution-of-pvt-slovik.  Accessed 31 Jan 2015.

The execution of Pvt. Slovik
 
 
 

On this day, Pvt. Eddie Slovik becomes the first American soldier since the Civil War to be executed for desertion-and the only one who suffered such a fate during World War II.

Pvt. Eddie Slovik was a draftee. Originally classified 4-F because of a prison record (grand theft auto), he was reclassified 1-A when draft standards were lowered to meet growing personnel needs. In January 1944, he was trained to be a rifleman, which was not to his liking, as he hated guns.

In August of the same year, Slovik was shipped to France to fight with the 28th Infantry Division, which had already suffered massive casualties in France and Germany. Slovik was a replacement, a class of soldier not particular respected by officers. As he and a companion were on the way to the front lines, they became lost in the chaos of battle and stumbled upon a Canadian unit that took them in.

Slovik stayed on with the Canadians until October 5, when they turned him and his buddy over to the American military police. They were reunited with the 28th Division, which had been moved to Elsenborn, Belgium. No charges were brought, as replacements getting lost early on in their tours of duty were not unusual. But exactly one day after Slovik returned to his unit, he claimed he was "too scared and too nervous" to be a rifleman, and threatened to run away if forced into combat. His confession was ignored-and Slovik took off. One day later he returned and signed a confession of desertion, claiming he would run away again if forced to fight, and submitted it to an officer of the 28th. The officer advised Slovik to take the confession back, as the consequences were serious. Slovik refused and was confined to the stockade.

The 28th Division had many cases of soldiers wounding themselves or deserting in the hopes of a prison sentence that might protect them from the perils of combat. A legal officer of the 28th offered Slovik a deal: dive into combat immediately and avoid the court-martial. Slovik refused. He was tried on November 11 for desertion and was convicted in less than two hours. The nine-officer court-martial panel passed a unanimous sentence of execution, "to be shot to death with musketry."

Slovik's appeal failed. It was held that he "directly challenged the authority" of the United States and that "future discipline depends upon a resolute reply to this challenge." Slovik had to pay for his recalcitrant attitude, and the military made an example of him. One last appeal was made-to Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander-but the timing was bad for mercy. The Battle of the Bulge in the Ardennes forest was resulting in literally thousands of American casualties, not to mention the second largest surrender of an U.S. Army unit during the war. Eisenhower upheld the death sentence.

Slovik was shot and killed by a 12-man firing squad in eastern France. None of the rifleman even flinched, firmly believing Slovik had gotten what he deserved.

31 January 1944 A.D. BIG DAY FOR NAVY—USS GUEST (DD-472) & USS HUDSON (DD-475) Sink Jap Sub 1-71; USS TRIGGER (SS-237) Sinks NASAMI & Damages Destroyer; USS TULLIBEE (SS-284) Sinks MIRO MARU


31 January 1944 A.D. BIG DAY FOR NAVY—USS GUEST (DD-472) & USS HUDSON (DD-475) Sink Jap Sub 1-71; USS TRIGGER (SS-237) Sinks NASAMI & Damages Destroyer;  USS TULLIBEE (SS-284) Sinks MIRO MARU


1944 - The Marshall Island Invasion begins with US Marine and Army troops landing at Kwajalein and Majuro atolls and then on Roi and Namur the following day. Vice Adm. Raymond A. Spruance, Task Force 50, commands the overall operation, while the landing force is under the command of Marine Maj. Gen. Holland M. Smith.

1944 - USS Guest (DD 472) and USS Hudson (DD 475) sink the Japanese submarine I-171 off the Bismarck Archipelago. Also on this date, USS Trigger (SS 237) sinks the Japanese minelayer Nasami and damages a destroyer in the Central Pacific area, while USS Tullibee (SS 284) sinks the Japanese auxiliary netlayer Miro Maru north-northwest of Saipan

1945 - USS Boarfish (SS 327) attacks Japanese HI 88 convoy and sinks freighter Enki Maru 50 miles southeast of Tourance, French Indochina. She also damages a cargo ship that runs aground and 14th Air Force aircraft destroys it the next day.

1961 - Lt. Cmdr. Samuel Lee Gravely, Jr. becomes first African-American to command a combat ship, USS Falgout (DER 324). By 1976, he attains the rank of vice admiral.

1968 - The main phase of the Tet Offensive begins as Communist Vietnamese troops attack military and civilian command and control centers throughout South Vietnam, attempting to incite an uprising in the general populace that will topple the Saigon government.

1981 - The era of Enlisted Naval Aviators comes to a close when the last enlisted pilot, Master Chief Robert K. Jones, retires after 38 years of naval service.

31 January 1886 A.D. Rev. Prof. R.B. Kuiper Born—President of Calvin Seminary & Professor of Homiletics, Westminster Seminary


31 January 1886 A.D.  Rev. Prof. R.B. Kuiper Born—President of Calvin Seminary & Professor of Homiletics, Westminster Seminary

Archivist. “January 31: R.B. Kuiper.”  This Day in Presbyterian History. N.d. http://www.thisday.pcahistory.org/2015/01/january-31-4/.  Accessed 31 Jan 2015.

January 31: R.B. Kuiper


Distinctive Calvinism


The wording of the postal telegram in 1933 was simple enough to Rienk Bouke Kuiper, who was president of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan.   Printed in all capital letters, it said, “UPON THE UNANIMOUS RECOMMENDATION OF THE FACULTY AND THE TRUSTEES OF WESTMINSTER SEMINARY IN SESSION MAY NINTH BY A UNANIMOUS VOTE HAVE ELECTED YOU TO THE CHAIR OF PRACTICAL THEOLOGY.  THE SECRETARY OF THE BOARD WILL SEND YOU FULL INFORMATION.  WE HOPE AND PRAY THAT YOU MAY BE LED TO ACCEPT THIS POST.  (signed) C. E. MACARTNEY, SAMUEL CRAIG, T. EDWARD ROSS, (for the board).

R. B. Kuiper was not unknown to the faculty and trustees of this new Presbyterian seminary in Philadelphia.  He had served the first year of its existence as professor of Systematic Theology, but then had left it to become the president of Calvin College.  Now he was being asked to return two years later to become the professor of practical theology.  The prospective teacher had all the spiritual gifts necessary for such a post.

Born January 31, 1886 in the Netherlands to a ministerial father, the family had emigrated to the United States so the father could take a congregation in Michigan of the Christian Reformed Church.

Later, R. B. Kuiper was educated at the University of Chicago, Indiana University, and with a diploma from Calvin Theological Seminary, he finished up his training at Princeton Seminary in 1912.

After this latter instruction from some of the finest minds of the Presbyterian world, such as B.B. Warfield, R.B. Kuiper began his ministry in the pastorate, serving several congregations in Michigan. He would have all that was necessary to be a pastor of practical theology from that experience.

Below, the Westminster faculty as composed upon Kuiper’s arrival, 1933-34.


R.B. Kuiper answered the telegram’s invitation in the affirmative  and went to Westminster Seminary in Philadelphia, where he taught for 20 years.  One of his students remarked that he had the gift of making the profound simple as he proclaimed the whole counsel of God.

Among that broad span of the whole counsel of God, and one which seminary professors and students often fail, is the area of Reformed  evangelism.   Listen to his words in his book “To be or Not to Be Reformed.”  He wrote “May God forbid that we should become complacent about our progress in evangelism!  Our zeal for evangelism is not nearly as warm as it ought to be.  Our evangelistic labors are not nearly as abundant as they should be.  Our prayers for the translation of souls from darkness into God’s marvelous light must become far more fervent.” (p. 77)   What R. B. Kuiper wrote fifty years ago is no  less true in our day.   Ask yourselves the question?  Am I a zealous evangelist?


Words to Live By:  “And when the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the LORD, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed.” The apostle Paul, Acts 13:48 (ESV)   “Divine election, and it alone, guarantees results for evangelism.”  R.B. Kuiper

Pictured above: Some of the courses taught by R.B. Kuiper in his first year at Westminster.

31 January 1865 A.D. House Passes 13th Amendment


31 January 1865 A.D.  House Passes 13th Amendment

 

Editors. “House passes 13th Amendment.” History.com. N.d. http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/house-passes-the-13th-amendment.  Accessed 31 Jan 2015.

House passes the 13th Amendment


 

On this day in 1865, the U.S. House of Representatives passes the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery in America. The amendment read, "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude...shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction."

When the Civil War began, President Abraham Lincoln's professed goal was the restoration of the Union. But early in the war, the Union began keeping escaped slaves rather than returning them to their owners, so slavery essentially ended wherever the Union army was victorious. In September 1862, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, freeing all slaves in areas that were still in rebellion against the Union. This measure opened the issue of what to do about slavery in border states that had not seceded or in areas that had been captured by the Union before the proclamation.

In 1864, an amendment abolishing slavery passed the U.S. Senate but died in the House as Democrats rallied in the name of states' rights. The election of 1864 brought Lincoln back to the White House along with significant Republican majorities in both houses, so it appeared the amendment was headed for passage when the new Congress convened in March 1865. Lincoln preferred that the amendment receive bipartisan support--some Democrats indicated support for the measure, but many still resisted. The amendment passed 119 to 56, seven votes above the necessary two-thirds majority. Several Democrats abstained, but the 13th Amendment was sent to the states for ratification, which came in December 1865. With the passage of the amendment, the institution that had indelibly shaped American history was eradicated.

31 January 1795 A.D. Alexander Hamilton Resigns as Secretary of the Treasury


31 January 1795 A.D. Alexander Hamilton Resigns as Secretary of the Treasury

Editors. “1795Wounded by the sharp criticism of his colleagues, Alexander Hamilton resigned his post as the Secretary of the Treasury on this day in 1795.”  History.com. N.d. https://thisdayinusmilhist.wordpress.com/2014/01/31/january-31/. Accessed 31 Jan 2015.

1795Wounded by the sharp criticism of his colleagues, Alexander Hamilton resigned his post as the Secretary of the Treasury on this day in 1795. During his run as the first U.S. Treasury Secretary, Hamilton put his conservative stamp on the young nation’s finances, establishing a national bank and a tax-based system to fuel the repayment of national and foreign debts. Hamilton also pushed for the Federal government to assume full responsibility for debts incurred by the states during the Revolutionary War. However, Hamilton’s Federalist ardor was a frequent target for controversy, as was his role in meting out the country’s neutrality stance during the early stages of the Napoleonic Wars. Hamilton’s involvement in the latter bit of policy drew particularly heavy fire and helped seal his departure from office. And so, Hamilton putatively retired to lick his wounds and count his vast personal fortune. But, the siren call of politics proved irresistible and Hamilton served a long stint as an unofficial presidential advisor.

31 January 1606 A.D. Execution of Guy Fawkes—Gunpowder Plot


31 January 1606 A.D. Execution of Guy Fawkes—Gunpowder Plot

Editors. “The Execution of Guy Fawkes—31 January 1606.” Today in British History. N.d. http://todayinbritishhistory.com/2014/03/execution-guy-fawkes-31-january-1606/. Accessed 14 Jan 2015.

The Execution of Guy Fawkes – 31 January 1606


 



Guy Fawkes

Guy Fawkes was bon in mid-April 1570, but few details of his early life are well documented. An important detail that is known is that his family were recusant Catholics. Fawkes was instilled with Catholicism from a young age, and at 21 he travelled to the continent to begin a military career. He fought mainly for the Spanish Catholics during the Eighty Years’ War and earned a reputation as a man of character, devoted to his religion.

In 1603, Fawkes sought the Spanish king’s help in fomenting a Catholic rebellion in England, but was rejected. When he returned to England, Fawkes became involved with a group of English Catholics who hoped to assassinate King James I. They first met in May 1604 and hatched a plan to blow up Parliament using large quantities of gunpowder. Fawkes, largely unknown in England, played the role of ‘John Johnson,’ a servant of one of the conspirators. After gaining access to a cellar beneath Parliament, the group managed to move 36 barrels of gunpowder into the cellar.


The execution of Guy Fawkes, by Claes (Nicolaes) Jansz Visscher, given to the National Portrait Gallery, London in 1916.

By October 1605 they had begun to finalize the plans. Fawkes was tasked with lighting the fuse on their stash of gunpowder. They planned to simultaneously foment a revolt whereby they could capture Princess Elizabeth and place her on the throne. On 26 October, a few members of the group sent an anonymous letter to an MP because they feared that their Catholic brethren in Parliament would fall victim to the blast. The letter, however, reached King James and aroused his suspicions. He ordered a search of the cellars beneath Parliament, and early on the morning of 5 November Guy Fawkes was discovered with the gunpowder stash, a watch and a match in hand.

After his arrest, Fawkes maintained his fictional identity, that of ‘John Johnson.’ When asked by a lord why he had placed such a large quantity of gunpowder beneath Parliament, Fawkes responded that his intention was “to blow you Scotch beggars back to your native mountains.” In the face of Fawkes’ non-cooperation, James I authorised the use of torture in an order sent to the Tower of London on 6 November. Guy Fawkes was tortured over the course of the next few days and was broken to the point that he began to identify his co-conspirators.


Read about the Gunpowder Plot and the execution of Guy Fawkes in the January edition of Today In British History.

After an investigation was conducted, eight of the conspirators, including Fawkes, were brought to trial on 27 January 1606. All eight of the conspirators were found guilty of high treason and sentenced to death by hanging and quartering. Four of the conspirators were executed on 30 January, and Fawkes, along with the three remaining, was executed on 31 January 1606. The sentence had required that the prisoners be dragged behind a horse from their prison cell to the scaffold. The scaffold itself had been erected in the Old Palace Yard at Westminster, directly opposite the building that Fawkes and his compatriots had attempted to raze.

Historians debate the final act of Fawkes life, but it is clear that Fawkes managed to avoid the agony of death by hanging. Some claim that he purposefully climbed the ladder too high so that the noose was incorrectly set in a way that would break his neck. Others claim that Fawkes jumped from the ladder to the ground, purposefully breaking his neck so as to avoid the hangman’s noose. In either case, it is agreed that he died immediately. Nonetheless, his body was quartered and his body parts were taken to the four corners of the kingdom to be a warning to other traitorous minds.

31 January 410 A.D. Generous Marcella Tortured for Money


31 January 410 A.D.  Generous Marcella Tortured for Money


Graves, Dan. “Generous Marcella Tortured for Money.” Christianity.com.  May 2007.  http://www.christianity.com/church/church-history/timeline/301-600/generous-marcella-tortured-for-money-11629691.html.  Accessed 11 Jun 2014.

Wealth can be either a curse or a blessing. For Marcella it proved to be both.

She was born into a wealthy upper class Roman home around  325. As a girl she met Athanasius, the bishop of Alexandria who almost spent more time on the run from enemies than he spent in his see. Athanasius gave her a copy of his Life of Antony, the hermit-monk who did so much to make monasticism a major force in Christianity. Antony's ascetic practices greatly impressed Marcella.

Ascetic practices were a natural over-reaction in a world where waste and dissipation ran to wild extremes. To please her mother, Marcella married. Seven months later her husband died, leaving her independently wealthy. Rather than dress so as to attract another husband, the young widow dressed so as to conceal her dazzling beauty.

All the same, her hand was sought in marriage. One of her suitors was a Consul (a high Roman magistrate) and an Uncle to a Caesar. Elderly, he promised to make over his substantial fortune to her. Although Marcella was under pressure from her mother to accept the marriage, she refused his hand, saying wittily, "had I a wish to marry and not rather to dedicate myself to perpetual chastity, I should look for a husband and not for an inheritance."

Marcella's wealth proved a boon. With it she was able to feed the poor, contenting herself with very little. She was one of several Roman women who practiced austere lives as a protest against the lawless self-indulgence of their time.

Most of what we know about this rare woman comes from letters of Jerome. Marcella met and studied with the great scholar (who made the Latin Vulgate translation of the Bible). The two corresponded for the rest of their lives, exchanging thoughts on many issues, such as the Montanist heresy or the sin against the Holy Ghost. Marcella probed Jerome with pertinent questions.

When the Goths captured Rome in 410, Marcella's former possessions proved a curse. She was tortured to reveal where her supposed wealth was hidden. She showed them her coarse dress, insisting truthfully that she had given everything away. Forgetting about her own sufferings, she pleaded that the soldiers not rape Principia, her pupil. The soldiers finally took her to a church, where she died praising God.

In a letter to Principia, Jerome compared Marcella's case to Anna who lived in the temple. Jerome pointed out that Anna "lived with her husband seven years; Marcella seven months. Anna only hoped for Christ; Marcella held Him fast. Anna confessed him at His birth; Marcella believed in Him crucified..."

Churches that honor feast days remember Marcella on this day, January 31.

Bibliography:

"St. Paula." The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton, 1914.

Letters of St. Jerome.

Various encyclopedia and internet articles.

Last updated May, 2007.

CENTURIONS FORUM: The Third Sunday before Lent (Septuagesima); and t...

CENTURIONS FORUM: The Third Sunday before Lent (Septuagesima); and t...: The Sunday called Septuagesima, or the third Sunday before Lent. Psalm 23 Dominus regit me. THE Lord is my shepherd : therefore can...

Thursday, January 29, 2015

29 January 1991 A.D. 1st MARDIV in Operation Desert Storm Help Capture Khafji


29 January 1991 A.D. 1st MARDIV in Operation Desert Storm Help Capture Khafji


29 January 1991: The first serious ground fighting of Operation Desert Storm broke out when Iraqi troops mounted an attack into Saudi Arabia along a 40-mile front. Iraqi units centered their efforts on Khafji, a port city six miles south of the border. Saudi and Quatari troops, supported by artillery from the 1st Marine Division and attack helicopters and other allied coalition aircraft, recaptured the town two days later.

29 January 1944 A.D. (Frigate) HMCS ETTRICK (K-254) Commissioned


29 January 1944 A.D. (Frigate) HMCS ETTRICK (K-254) Commissioned


January 29, 1944 The River Class frigate HMCS Ettrick (K254) commissions into the Royal Canadian Navy. She is paid off 30 May 1945.

29 January 1559 A.D. John Calvin’s Letter to Sir William Cecil, Secretary to Queen Elizabeth


29 January 1559 A.D.  John Calvin’s Letter to Sir William Cecil, Secretary to Queen Elizabeth

http://reformationanglicanism.blogspot.com/2010/12/letter-xxvjohn-calvin-to-sir-william.html  


LETTER XXV—JOHN CALVIN TO SIR WILLIAM CECIL, SECRETARY TO THE QUEEN OF ENGLAND



Calvin writes in 1559 to Sir William Cecil, Secretary to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth 1. This period follows the persecuting reign of queen Mary who succeeded Edward VI. Mary was enthroned October 1553 and died November 1558. Cecil was first promoted by the duke of Somerset and became a distinguished lawyer; by his moderate and temporizing conduct during Mary's bloody reign, he escaped punishment. He continued in England and, upon the accession of Elizabeth, he was made secretary of state.

LETTER XXV—JOHN CALVIN TO SIR WILLIAM CECIL, SECRETARY TO THE QUEEN OF ENGLAND.

For writing to you familiarly, most accomplished man, I shall not make a long apology, although I am personally unknown to you. Relying on the testimony of some pious persons, who have declared to me your generosity of heart, I trust that you will be disposed to receive my letter with pleasure; especially when you shall discover from the perusal my intention in writing. Since the awful darkness which had almost stupified the minds of pious men is dispersed, and the clear light has suddenly shone forth beyond all hope, it is reported that you, possessing distinguished favour with her majesty the queen, have endeavoured diligently to remove the profligate superstitions of Popery, which had accumulated through four years in England, so that the sincere doctrines of the gospel, and the pure and entire worship of God, again flourish. I have now therefore to exhort you freely and openly to commence your warfare for Christ. This one thing however remains, that what you do, you should proceed to do with the greatest activity and most invincible constancy. Your holy labours should neither be broken by any troubles, difficulties, contests or terrors, nor even in the least degree retarded. I doubt not, indeed, but that obstacles sometimes encounter you; and that dangers rise full before your eyes, which would dishearten the most resolute, unless God should sustain them by the most wonderful power of his Spirit. This is the cause, for the defence of which it is not lawful for us to decline the most arduous labours. During the time that the public place of execution was appropriated for burning the children of God, you yourself remained silent among others. At least then, since greater liberty is restored by the singular and incredible favour of God, it becomes you to take courage; and if you was, during that period, too timid, you may now compensate that loss by the ardour of your zeal. I know very well that a preposterous haste is injurious; and that many retard their progress by an inconsiderate and precipitate zeal, with which they would leap in a moment to the end of their race. But on the other hand, it is faithfully to be considered, that to maintain the whole truth and pure devotion of the gospel, is the work which God assigns us, and which must not be slothfully undertaken. From the present state of things, you are better able to judge, what steps are proper to be pursued, and what degree of moderation is to be exercised. But yon will remember, that all delay, with however specious colours it may be covered, ought to excite your suspicion. One fear, I conjecture, is from popular tumults, since among the nobles there are many who would kindle up the fire of sedition; and if the English become tumultuous among themselves, their neighbours are at hand, who anxiously watch for whatever opportunity may offer for their purpose. But as her most serene majesty has been wonderfully raised to the throne, by the hand of God, she cannot otherwise prove her gratitude, than by shaking off all delays by her prompt alacrity, and surmounting all impediments by her magnanimity. Since it can hardly be otherwise, but that, in the present turbulent and confused state of things, her attention should be suspended among important affairs, her mind perplexed and sometimes wavering; I have ventured to exhort her, that, having entered the right course, she should persevere with constancy. Whether I have done this prudently or not, let others judge. If, by your endeavours, my admonition produces the desired effect, I shall not repent of having given her that counsel. Consider also, most illustrious sir, that God has placed you in that degree of favour and dignity which you hold, that you might be wholly attentive to this concern, and stretch every nerve to the accomplishment of this work. And lest slothfulness by any means creep upon you, let it now and then come into your mind of what great moment are these two things: First, in what manner that religion, which was miserably fallen away ; that doctrine of salvation, which was adulterated by abominable falsehoods; that worship of God, which was polluted with defilements, may recover their lustre, and the Church be cleansed from this abomination? Secondly, how the children of God among you may be free to invoke his name in sincerity; and how those who are dispersed may be again collected. Farewell, most excellent man, sincerely respected by me. May the Lord guide you by his Spirit, protect and enrich you with all good gifts.

JOHN CALVIN
Geneva, January 29, 1559.