St Jacopone da Todi
(1230 Approx. – 1306)
Jacopo die Benedetti was born into a noble family in Todi, Italy. He was a bright student; studying law at Bologna and becoming a successful lawyer. He married a pious noblewoman when he was in his 20’s. In contrast to his wife, he was said to be a “worldly and greedy man.” Unknown to him, his wife wore a painful hair-shirt in atonement for his sins. However, while attending a public tournament, the stand in which she was sitting gave way and she was killed.
Blessed Jacopo, shocked when he discovered that she wore the hair-shirt, gave up his job, distributed his possessions among the poor and joined the Order of St Francis. Blessed Jacopo endearingly became known as Jacopone (Crazy Man) because of his sometimes theatrical public behaviour. He challenged the Church, believing that parts were corrupt and uninterested in the poor. He composed many beautiful poems and several Laude (songs of praise to the Lord). He was one of the first people to dramatise the Gospel. He is considered Blessed among the Franciscans.
When Mary visited Elizabeth, filled with joy she proudly sang this Hymn of Praise to God – The Magnificat:
My soul glorifies the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour.
He looks on his servant in her lowliness;
henceforth all ages will call me blessed.
The Almighty works marvels for me.
Holy his name!
His mercy is from age to age,
on those who fear him.
He puts forth his arm in strength
and scatters the proud-hearted.
He casts the mighty from their thrones and raises the lowly.
He fills the starving with good things,
sends the rich away empty.
He protects Israel, his servant,
remembering his mercy,
the mercy promised to our fathers,
to Abraham and his sons forever. Amen. (Luke 1:46-56)
Mary, filled with the Holy Spirit and using many phrases borrowed from the Old Testament especially, Hannah’s song (1 Samuel 2:1-10), sang from her heart to God the Father while recognising her own unworthiness to be the Mother of Jesus.
Heavenly Father, we also sing to you from our heart, knowing that you are our eternal salvation, “Glory to you our Almighty God”. We make this prayer in Jesus’ name. Amen
A Prayer – Trust
O Christ Jesus,
when all is darkness
and we feel our weakness and helplessness,
give us the sense of Your presence,
Your love, and Your strength.
Help us to have perfect trust
in Your protecting love
and strengthening power,
so that nothing may frighten or worry us,
for, living close to You,
we shall see Your hand,
Your purpose, Your will through all things.
|Music: You Raise Me Up|
Listen, reflect, enjoy…
|Blessed Jacopone da Todi:|
Pray for us but especially the poor that they will receive food and clothing today.
Glory be to the…
Almighty God, thank you for this new day. Bless me and keep me safe.
|Fr John’s Weekly:||Today’s Full Readings:|