May 16, St Andrew (Andrzej) Bobola

May 16
SAINT ANDREW BOBOLA, PRESBYTER and MARTYR,
PATRON of POLAND,
the ARCHDIOCESE of WARMIA AND DIOCESE of ŁOMŻA
Feast
In the Province of Warszawa: patron of the province – Solemnity

May 17
In the Diocese of Gliwice
SAINT ANDREW BOBOLA, PRESBYTER and MARTYR
Feast

Andrew Bobola was born in 1591 in the Sandomierz region. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1611. Ordained in 1622, he became a preacher and moderator of the Sodality of Our Lady in Vilnius. Becoming an itinerant missionary, from 1636 he strengthened the Catholic faith of hundreds of followers in the difficult times  for the Church. He died as a martyr in Janów (the Podlasie Region) in 1657, tortured out of hatred towards the Catholic religion. He was canonised in 1938. His body remains in the Jesuit Church in Warsaw.

Common of One Martyr, except:

EVENING PRAYER I

HYMN

O martyr full of power,
Whose strength outweighed many,
What song might praise
Your outstanding name.

Called by the heavenly voice
You became God’s soldier,
To sacrifice your blood and life
For the work of man’s salvation.

As a good shepherd you feed
The Lord’s fold with true words
And you show to the lost
The bright path of Gospel.

In Rome you see a bond of love
That connects all the faithful;
You confirmed it with your death,
Laying down your life for brothers.

We acclaim you, Jesus,
With your Father, and the Holy Ghost
That you give courage to
Your witnesses in an ordeal. Amen.

CANTICLE OF MARY

Ant. Andrew laid down his life for the unity of the Church, and now he rejoices in Christ forevermore.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

O God,
through your Son’s death you wished to gather into one your dispersed children,
grant, we pray, that we may zealously cooperate with the work of Christ, for whom Saint Andrew, Martyr, gave up his life.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

OFFICE OF READINGS

HYMN O martyr full of power as in Evening Prayer I.

FIRST READING

From the letter of the apostle Paul to the Ephesians 4:1-7; 11-24
One Lord, one faith, one baptism

Brothers! I urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace: one body and one Spirit, as you were also called to the one hope of your call; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. But grace was given to each of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift. For the first step toward discipline is a very earnest desire for her; then, care for discipline is love of her; love means the keeping of her laws; To observe her laws is the basis for incorruptibility; and incorruptibility makes one close to God; thus the desire for Wisdom leads up to a kingdom. If, then, you find pleasure in throne and scepter, you princes of the peoples, honor Wisdom, that you may reign as kings forever.

And he gave some as apostles, others as prophets, others as evangelists, others as pastors and teachers, to equip the holy ones for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of faith and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the extent of the full stature of Christ, so that we may no longer be infants, tossed by waves and swept along by every wind of teaching arising from human trickery, from their cunning in the interests of deceitful scheming. Rather, living the truth in love, we should grow in every way into him who is the head, Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, with the proper functioning of each part, brings about the body’s growth and builds itself up in love.

So I declare and testify in the Lord that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds; darkened in understanding, alienated from the life of God because of their ignorance, because of their hardness of heart, they have become callous and have handed themselves over to licentiousness for the practice of every kind of impurity to excess. That is not how you learned Christ, assuming that you have heard of him and were taught in him, as truth is in Jesus, that you should put away the old self of your former way of life, corrupted through deceitful desires, and be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and put on the new self, created in God’s way in righteousness and holiness of truth.

RESPONSORY 1 Corinthians 1:10; Ephesians 4:17

I urge you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, and that there be no divisions among you,
That you be united in the same mind and in the same purpose, with one voice glorifying our God.

So I declare and testify to the Lord,
That you be united in the same mind and in the same purpose, with one voice glorifying our God.

SECOND READING

From the encyclical of Pope Pius XII
(Encyclical Invicti athletae Christi; AAS 49 [1957] 321-331)
He treasured God’s Commandments

What seems to shine forth especially in the life of Andrew Bobola is his Catholic faith, whose vigour, nourished by divine grace, grew so much stronger with the passing of the years that it conferred on him a special mark of distinction, and spurred him on to undergo his martyrdom with courage.

“Now my just one lives by faith,” as the Apostles of the Gentiles declares, and in Bobola, faith shone with an unusual splendour. Whatever the Catholic Church teaches to be believed or done, he embraced with unwavering mind, and willingly endeavoured to practice. Thus, from earliest youth, he considered it normal to check, control, and subdue all those disorderly inclinations which, since the unhappy fall of Adam, disturb our nature and easily attract it to what is forbidden. But at the same time, his every effort and all his strength were directed to the adornment of his soul with Christian virtues.

Above all, Bobola was on fire with a great love of God and of his neighbours. As a result, he found nothing sweeter than to spend long hours, whenever possible, before the sacred tabernacle, and to assist the unfortunate in every way according to his means. He loved God above all, and far more than himself. He sought exclusively God’s glory, according to the Rule of his Father, St. Ignatius. It is not surprising, then, that this athlete of Jesus Christ, adorned with these gifts of grace, should have achieved such notable progress in the apostolic field, and been able to gather rich fruits in the saving of souls. But afterwards, when he was raised to the dignity of the priesthood , he chose before all else to spare no labor in order that he might spread everywhere a Catholic faith which would not be ineffective, but productive of good works. This tireless apostle of Jesus Christ had lived by faith, had spread the faith, and had defended the faith; so too, he did not hesitate to die for the faith of his fathers. The mind shudders as it recalls all the tortures which the athlete of Jesus Christ endured. In that contest, the Polish Martyr rose to the heights of the noblest triumphs which the Church commemorates.

Today also the Catholic religion in many places has been exposed to grave danger. It is necessary, therefore, to defend it by every available means, to explain it, to propagate it. And if to do this they must overcome many obstacles, and even sacrifice time and money, they must never refuse, mindful of the maxim that Christian virtue must do and suffer much, but God Himself will reward it most generously with everlasting happiness. There is always a bit of martyrdom in such virtue if we really want to strive day by day for a greater perfection of Christian life. For not only by shedding of blood is the witness of our faith given to God, but also by courageous and constant resistance to the lure of evil, and by the complete and generous dedication of all that we are and have to Him Who is our Creator and Redeemer, and will one day be our never ending joy in heaven.

Let everyone, then, contemplate the strength of soul of St. Andrew Bobola, Martyr. Let them learn from his example, preserve intact his unconquered faith, and defend it by every means. Let them so imitate his apostolic zeal that they too will try, in every way they can, to strengthen the Kingdom of Christ on earth, and, so far as their state of life permits, to spread that Kingdom everywhere.

RESPONSORY

I am a Catholic priest, said Andrew to Cossacks, I was born in the Catholic faith and in this faith I wish to die,
For the true faith leads to salvation.

Converting to my faith, you will know the true God and save your souls.
For the true faith leads to salvation.

TE DEUM You are God: we praise you.

CONCLUDING PRAYER as in Morning Prayer.

MORNING PRAYER

HYMN

Laudable day shines through,
And brings the new joy,
As Andrew laid down his life
For the unity of his Church.

O rejoice, Polish land,
That you have deserved such a son,
Whose death brightens
The community of the true faith.

For the guilt of pride rent
Christ’s only robe;
May Andrew’s blood and love
Beg its mending.

How much toil did he suffer
To bring the deceived back
To the only Shepherd
And keep them in one faith!

O Andrew, God’s knight,
As we praise with hymns
The memory of your torture,
Pray for us in heaven.

May Jesus, our Redeemer,
Forgive the sins of the fallen
And give us eternal joy,
Through the martyr’s honour. Amen.

CANTICLE OF ZECHARIAH

Ant. Blessed are you, Lord, for you gave me the triumph over bonds, swords and fire.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

O God,
through your Son’s death you wished to gather into one your dispersed children,
grant, we pray, that we may zealously cooperate with the work of Christ, for whom Saint Andrew, Martyr, gave up his life.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

DAYTIME PRAYER

On memorial – Antiphons and Psalms from Proper of Seasons.
O solemnity – Antiphons from Common of One Martyr. Complementary psalmody. Reading and Responsory from Common, Concluding Prayer as in Morning Prayer.

EVENING PRAYER II

HYMN O martyr full of power as in Evening Prayer I.

CANTICLE OF MARY

Ant. I give thanks to God, who has given me strength and entrusted me with the ministry of call for unity.

Concluding Prayer as in Morning Prayer.

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