|The Martyrdom of Pope Caius (San Gaggio). By Lorenzo Monaco (Lorenzo di Giovanni), ca. 1394-5. Originally part of altarpiece of church of San Gaggio in Florence. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
SIMPLE / RED
In 166 Soter succeeded Pope Anicetus on the Throne of St. Peter and was martyred some ten years later. Pope Soter was solicitous for the poor, and he consoled with the tenderness of a father the Christians who suffered persecution for their beliefs. Pope Caius, who died about the year 296, is said to have been a Dalmatian. Like all the Vicars of Christ in the first centuries, St. Soter and St. Caius were constant in uniting their sufferings to those of the Divine Redeemer and "in Him bore much fruit".
If thou lovest me, Simon Peter, feed my lambs, feed my sheep. Allelúja, allelúja
I will extol thee, O Lord, for thou hast upheld me: and hast not made my enemies to rejoice over me.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
If thou lovest me, Simon Peter, feed my lambs, feed my sheep. Allelúja, allelúja.
O Eternal Shepherd, who appointed blessed Soter shepherd of the whole Church, let the prayers of this martyr and supreme pontiff move You to look with favor upon Your flock and to keep it under Your continual protection.
O God, You have founded Your Church firmly upon the rock of Your apostles and defended her against the fearful powers of hell. May the intercession of the blessed martyr and supreme pontiff Caius preserve her always unwavering in Your truth and keep her safe under Your protection. Through Our Lord . . .
Lesson from the first letter of St Peter the Apostle
1 Pet 5:1-4; 5:10-11.
Dearly beloved brethren: The ancients therefore that are among you, I beseech, who am myself also an ancient, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ: as also a partaker of that glory which is to be revealed in time to come: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking care of it, not by constraint, but willingly, according to God: not for filthy lucre's sake, but voluntarily: Neither as lording it over the clergy, but being made a pattern of the flock from the heart. And when the prince of pastors shall appear, you shall receive a never fading crown of glory. But the God of all grace, who hath called us into his eternal glory in Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a little, will himself perfect you, and confirm you, and establish you. To him be glory and empire for ever and ever.
And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church
Thou shalt make them princes over all the earth. They shall remember thy name throughout all generations. Therefore shall people praise thee for ever; yea, for ever and ever. Allelúja.
Continuation ✝ of the Holy Gospel according to Matthew
R. Glory be to Thee, O Lord.
In that time: Jesus came into the quarters of Caesarea Philippi: and he asked his disciples, saying: Whom do men say that the Son of man is? But they said: Some John the Baptist, and other some Elias, and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets. Jesus saith to them: But whom do you say that I am? Simon Peter answered and said: Thou art Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answering, said to him: Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona: because flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven. And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven.
We have offered our gifts to You, O Lord. Let Your light graciously shine upon Your Church, so that this flock may everywhere prosper, and its pastors, under Your guidance, may be truly pleasing to You.
O Lord, graciously accept the gifts which we joyfully offer to You. May Your Church, through the prayers of blessed Caius, always live in peace and rejoice in the security of her faith. Through Our Lord . . .
O Lord, govern the Church, which You have been pleased to nourish with Your heavenly Food. Guide her by Your powerful direction so that she may enjoy greater freedom and remain unshaken in the fullness of faith.
O Lord, increase the spirit of grace which You have bestowed upon Your Church. Let the prayers of Your martyr and supreme pontiff aid her so that she may never fail in obedience to her shepherd, and the shepherd may never be wanting in his care of the flock. Through Our Lord . . .