Tuesday, February 15, 2011

February 15 -- Blessed Jordan of Saxony

Blessed Jordan of Saxony ( 1190-1237) was the immediate successor of St. Dominic.  Concerned about his flock, he went to visit the Emperor of the Holy Roman German Empire, Frederic II, who was persecuting the faithful. 

After a long silence, Blessed Jordan addressed the Emperor with these words, "...it is said that you have oppressed the churches, scorned ecclesiastical censures, believed in superstitions, favored Jews and Saracens, and refused to honor the Pope, Vicar of Jesus Christ. Certainly, this is not worthy of an Emperor."  Blessed Jordan then walked out of the room. 

These words and action could certainly be considered a serious threat against the Emperor who was the highest temporal authority on earth. It took a huge amount of courage for Blessed Jordan to confront the Frederic II in this way.  But he knew that the Pope had the right to command an Emperor if he submitted to heresy or persecuted the Church.  And so it was that Pope Gregory IX did in fact excommunicate Frederic II.

Today, a president of a nation is far less powerful than the  monarchs of former days . Yet , it is almost unheard of that a person would have the courage to tell him face to face about his errors of action and judgment.

Let us ask Blessed Jordan to help us attain a lively faith and indomitable courage to fight against evil and to give the Church courageous men of his mold.

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