I hope you don’t mind that I changed the look of this a little bit. My prior theme had a little bar that would appear when you scrolled down to a certain point and it annoyed me so it had to go.
Today is the feast of St John, specifically the nativity of St John. Interesting for you to know that it is a holiday in St John’s, Newfoundland, as it’s both “St John Day” and “Discovery Day” since the city was founded on this very day though the actual holiday is moved to the Monday preceding the date. St George’s and St Patrick’s day follow the same pattern.
You might already know that the Church celebrates only two nativities other than that of Our Lord. The Blessed Mother of God is the first and then it’s himself, St John the Baptist. It never occurred to me until I read today over at Catholicism Pure and Simple that it could be because only Our Lady and St John were ever born without original sin.
The painting above is of the Infant Jesus with the infant John, painted by Bartolomé Esteban Perez Murillo, a prolific artist in his time. The conception of John in the womb of St Elizabeth was foretold by the angel who appeared to the Blessed Mother, announcing that she was to conceive of the Holy Ghost a son, who saved us from our sin. When it came that Our Lady travelled to meet Elizabeth (her cousin) the gospel of St Luke says
No sooner had Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, than the child leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth herself was filled with the Holy Ghost; so that she cried out with a loud voice “Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. How have I deserved to be thus visited by the mother of my Lord? Why, as soon as ever the voice of thy greeting sounded in my ears, the child in my womb leaped for joy.”
The man who baptised Jesus was known as the “beloved disciple”, for such was the glory of this saint. We can find in St John and perfect model for true love of God and the desire to preach unto others the truth that is there to preach. I wish you all a happy St John’s day, don’t forget to say a Rosary for the souls in Purgatory!