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Lent: March 20th

Saturday of the Third Week of Lent

Other Commemorations: St. Photina (RM)


March 20, 2004 (Readings on USCCB website)


Lord, may this lenten observance of the suffering, death, and resurrection of Christ bring us to the full joy of Easter. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.


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"Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles himself will be exalted." (Lk. 18:14) "Even if we should have mounted to the very pinnacle of virtue, let us consider ourselves last of all; having learned that pride is able to cast down even from the heavens themselves him who takes not heed, and humbleness of mind to bear up on high from the very abyss of sins him who knows how to be sober. For this it was that placed the publican before the Pharisee." — St. John Chrysostom

The Station is in the church of St. Susanna, virgin and martyr of Rome. The reason this church was chosen is because the history of the chaste Susanna, the daughter of Helcias, was read today in the Tridentine Mass.

Meditation- Mary's Acceptance of All, for Love of Us
Mary, there present as eyewitness to the sacred Passion of her divine Son on Good Friday, was destined to be present in spirit and maternal interest at future scenes in the unending tragedy of Christ Jesus' Passion in His members through all the Christian centuries. She was destined to be present precisely in that high office to which Jesus Himself would assign her at the foot of His cross on Calvary, as the Mother of all who live the divine life of the children of the Second Adam. Hence, to fit her for this office of Mediatrix who would have Christ-like compassion on all our human infirmities, she too must be tempted in all things as we are (without sin), that we might with confidence go to the throne of her mercy, there to obtain the precious grace of Christ-like obedience through her who herself learned perfect obedience by the things which she suffered with her divine Son. She also must be tested that, by her union with the very humiliation and suffering with which the Son purchased His title of High Priest, the Mother too might at the same time purchase her title — Mediatrix of all the graces to be dispensed from the treasury of the Sacred Heart of Him, who alone is in His own right the great High Priest, the universal and plenipotentiary Mediator of the New Testament.

Mark well, therefore—it was on Good Friday, during these hours of darkness and shame and anguish which Mary shared with Jesus most intimately, that the Savior fountains of the Second Adam poured their tenderest mercifulness into the heart of the Second Eve so copiously, that until the Book of Life is filled the whole world might with unlimited filial confidence have recourse to Mary—

The Health of the sick,
The safe Refuge of sinners,
The sympathetic Comforter of the afflicted,
The unfailing Help of Christians
Our Way to the Father by Rev. Leo M. Krenz, S.J.

Things to Do:

  • Pray the Litany of Humility.

St. Photina
St. Photina was that Samaritan woman whom our Lord met at Jacob’s Well. When He disclosed the secret of her profligate life, she believed in Him at once as that Messiah which was to come and began spreading the Gospel among the Samaritans, converting many. Later, she and her son Josiah and her five sisters went to Carthage to preach and then to Rome. Another son, Victor, was a soldier and had already come to Emperor Nero’s attention as being a Christian. The Emperor summoned the whole family and with threats and tortures tried to force them to renounce their faith in Jesus Christ. Meanwhile, when Nero’s daughter Domnina came in contact with Photina (the Lord Himself had given her the name, meaning “resplendent” or “shining with light”), she, too, was converted. The enraged emperor had the heads of the sons and sisters cut off; Photina was held in prison for a few more weeks before being thrown into a well, where she joyously gave her soul to the Lord.

Excerpted from Orthodox America

Things to Do:

  • Read more about St. Photina here.

Saturday in the 4th Week of Lent
Station with San Nicola in Carcere (St. Nicholas in Prison):

Today's Station is at St. Nicholas in Prison, dedicated to the popular St. Nicholas of Myra, whose feast is December 6. It was constructed in the ruins of two temples and the ancient Forum Olitorium, and you can see fragments from the ruins reused in the church. The most important of the temples was the Temple of Piety, built by Acilius Glabrius, consul in 191 B.C. The dedication to St. Nicholas was made by the Greek population in the area.