SAINT OF THE DAY: 30 JANUARY, 2013

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SAINT BATHILDES
Queen.
(c. 634-680)

St. Bathildes was an Englishwoman, who was carried over whilst yet young into France, and there sold for a slave, at a very low price, to Erkenwald, mayor of the palace under King Clovis II. When she grew up, her master was so much taken with her prudence and virtue that he placed her in charge of his household.

The renown of her virtues spread through all France, and King Clovis II. took her for his royal consort. This unexpected elevation produced no alteration in a heart perfectly grounded in humility and the other virtues; she seemed to become even more humble than before. Her new station furnished her the means of being truly a mother to the poor; the king gave her the sanction of his royal authority for the protection of the Church, the care of the poor, and the furtherance of all religious undertakings.

The death of her husband left her regent of the kingdom. She at once forbade the enslavement of Christians, did all in her power to promote piety, and filled France with hospitals and religious houses.

As soon as her son Clotaire was of an age to govern, she withdrew from the world and entered the convent of Chelles. Here she seemed entirely to forget her worldly dignity, and was to be distinguished from the rest of the community only by her extreme humility, her obedience to her spiritual superiors, and her devotion to the sick, whom she comforted and served with wonderful charity.

As she neared her end, God visited her with a severe illness, which she bore with Christian patience until, on the 30th of January, 680, she yielded up her soul in devout prayer.

(SOURCE: Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. [1894])

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READING OF THE DAY: 30 JANUARY, 2013

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“On another occasion he began to teach by the sea. A very large crowd gathered around him so that he got into a boat on the sea and sat down. And the whole crowd was beside the sea on land.

And he taught them at length in parables, and in the course of his instruction he said to them,

Hear this! A sower went out to sow.

And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and the birds came and ate it up.

Other seed fell on rocky ground where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep.

And when the sun rose, it was scorched and it withered for lack of roots.

Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it and it produced no grain.

And some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit. It came up and grew and yielded thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold.”

He added, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.”

And when he was alone, those present along with the Twelve questioned him about the parables.

He answered them, “The mystery of the kingdom of God has been granted to you. But to those outside everything comes in parables,
so that ‘they may look and see but not perceive, and hear and listen but not understand, in order that they may not be converted and be forgiven.'”

Jesus said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? Then how will you understand any of the parables?

The sower sows the word.

These are the ones on the path where the word is sown. As soon as they hear, Satan comes at once and takes away the word sown in them.

And these are the ones sown on rocky ground who, when they hear the word, receive it at once with joy.

But they have no root; they last only for a time. Then when tribulation or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away.

Those sown among thorns are another sort. They are the people who hear the word, but worldly anxiety, the lure of riches, and the craving for other things intrude and choke the word, and it bears no fruit.

But those sown on rich soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit thirty and sixty and a hundredfold.” -Mark 4:1-20.