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Lent Day 36: Ambrose of Milan: Concerning the Mysteries: 5-9

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 11th April 2017 in Lent | Lent,great lent,fasting,early church fathers,devotional,daily reading,Doctor of the Church,lectures,liturgy,catechism,Eucharist,Bishop of Milan,St Ambrose,mysteries,treatise,baptism,transubstantiation,real presence
Day Thirty-six: St. Ambrose of Milan: Concerning the Mysteries: 5-9 Who: Bishop of Milan from 374 to 397; born probably 340, at Trier, Arles, or Lyons; died 4 April, 397. He was one of the most illustrious Fathers and Doctors of the Church. What: The treatise was composed for use during the latter part of Lent, for the benefit of those about to be baptised, the rites and meaning of that Sacrament, as well as of Confirmation and the Holy Eucharist. For all these matters were treated with the greatest reserve in the Early Church, for fear of being misused by unbelievers. Why: Ambrose states that after the explanations he has already given of holy living (in pre...
 

Lent: Day 4 - Polycarp to the Philippians

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 4th March 2017 in Lent | Lent,great lent,fasting,early church fathers,devotional,daily reading,episle of Polycarp to the Philippians
Day Four: Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians (full text) Who: Polycarp of Smyrna, who was a direct disciple of the apostle John. We also have some information about Polycarp via Irenaeus (who knew Polycarp) in his book, Adv. Haer., III.3.4: “But Polycarp also was not only instructed by apostles, and conversed with many who had seen Christ, but was also, by apostles in Asia, appointed bishop of the Church in Smyrna”. What: Lots of exhortations are contained in this letter, and is also referenced by Irenaeus as being for “those who wish to do so, and are anxious about their salvation, can learn the character of his (Polycarp's) faith, and the preachin...
 

Lent: Day 10 - Ignatius to the Smyrnaeans

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 11th March 2017 in Lent | Lent,great lent,fasting,early church fathers,devotional,daily reading,Ignatius,Ignatius to the smyrnaeans
Day Ten: St. Ignatius of Antioch: Letter to the Smyrnaeans (full text) Who: Ignatius converted at a young age and later became Bishop of Antioch. A friend of Polycarp and fellow disciple of John, there is a long standing tradition that Ignatius was the child that Jesus held in his arms and blessed in Mark 10:13-16 What: A defence against the heresy of Docetism and an intriguing insight into the possible origins of evil spirits! Why: Ignatius wrote a series of letters to the churches in Asia Minor whilst en route to Rome to face martyrdom by wild beasts in the Colosseum around 108 AD. When: Around 107-108 AD The opening chapters of this letter pulls no punc...
 

Spiritual Disciplines of the Early Church: Ancient Practices for the 21st Century

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 17th June 2019 in Early Church |
I was asked not so long ago what kinds of things Christians did in the Early Church (first to fourth century) as a form of spiritual discipline, on a personal level as well as a corporate one. Though the concept of an individual “personal spiritual life” would have been quite foreign to first century believers as faith and Church was very much a corporate venture that had personal implications, rather than the other way around as it can often appear to be thought of today. Much of what made Christianity structured, disciplined and set apart from society, has largely been lost in practice, or forgotten and relegated to the annals of history by many practicin...
 

Is fasting an expectation for Christians?

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 29th February 2020 in Fasting | fasting,Lent,Ash Wednesday,self control,self denial
The season of Lent is here once again which of course brings up the topic of fasting, since the tradition of Lent comes from following Jesus’ example of his time in the wilderness (Luke 4:1–2). I wasn’t planning on writing anything specific this year like I have previous in previous years, but I felt inspired today at church from one of Gospel readings: Matthew 9:14–15 Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples do not fast?” And Jesus said to them, “The wedding guests cannot mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them, can they? The days will come when the bridegroom is t...
 

Lent Day 35: Ambrose of Milan: Concerning the Mysteries: 1-4

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 10th April 2017 in Lent | Lent,great lent,fasting,early church fathers,devotional,daily reading,Doctor of the Church,lectures,liturgy,catechism,Eucharist,Bishop of Milan,St Ambrose,mysteries,treatise
Day Thirty-five: St. Ambrose of Milan: Concerning the Mysteries: 1-4 Who: Bishop of Milan from 374 to 397; born probably 340, at Trier, Arles, or Lyons; died 4 April, 397. He was one of the most illustrious Fathers and Doctors of the Church. What: The treatise was composed for use during the latter part of Lent, for the benefit of those about to be baptised, the rites and meaning of that Sacrament, as well as of Confirmation and the Holy Eucharist. For all these matters were treated with the greatest reserve in the Early Church, for fear of being misused by unbelievers. Why: Ambrose states that after the explanations he has already given of holy living (in pr...
 
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