November 24, 2018
(Saint Andrew Dung-Lac, Priest, and (117) Companions, Martyrs)
Jesus said to them, “The children of this age marry and remarry; but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called ‘Lord’ the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.” Lk_20:27-40
117 saints died under persecutions of Christians that lasted from 1625 to 1886, and cost about 130,000 lives. The martyrdoms occurred in the three Vietnamese kingdoms: Tonkin, Annam and Cochin-China. Among the 117 were 96 Vietnamese and 21 foreign missionaries. Of the Vietnamese were 37 priests and 59 lay people, among whom were catechists and tertiaries, a mother, and her children. Of the missionaries was 11 Spaniards; 6 bishops and 5 priests, all Dominicans, and 10 were French; 2 bishops and 8 priests from Société des Missions Etrangères in Paris. 76 were beheaded, 21 suffocated, 6 burnt alive, 5 mutilated and 9 died in prison as a result of torture.
Jesus reminds us today that all of God’s children and especially those willing to give their lives for their faith become like the angels in their resurrections. Blessed are they, beloved! May we have the faith and the strength to stand so worthily for the God of our belief, for Jesus, who gave Himself for us, in the same way!
Blessed be our God!
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