Ordinary Time: June 20th
Monday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time
Other Commemorations: St. John Matera (RM); Bl. Margareta Ebner (RM) ; Other Titles: John Pulsano
Gospel Verse, Heb 4:12:
The word of God is living and effective, able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart.
Today's Roman Martyrology commemorates St. John Matera (also John Pulsano) (1070-1139). St. John was a native of Matera, Italy and in his childhood longed to become a hermit. As a young man, he worked for a time as a shepherd in the service of a monastery. His exceptional austerity, however, was so irksome to the less fervent monks that he soon had to leave. Thereafter he journeyed from place to place as he strove to carry out God's will for him. At one point, acting upon a vision of Saint Peter he had experienced, John rebuilt a dilapidated church dedicated to the saint. Later, he traveled to Bari, where he preached with great efficacy. Certain individuals, motivated perhaps by jealousy, attacked the popular preacher with false charges of heresy, but he was in the end totally cleared of their accusations. Eventually John founded a Benedictine monastery at Pulsano and became its first abbot.St. Margareta Ebner (1291-1351) is also commemorated today. She was a Dominican nun at the Maria Medingen monastery near Dillingen, is one of the most important representatives of 14th century German female mysticism. She fell seriously ill in 1312 and was sick and bedridden all her life. She formed a deep spiritual friendship with the mystic Heinrich von Nördlingen (ca. 1310-1387), whom she met in 1332, with the long correspondence between them constituting the first preserved German-language collection of letters.
St. John of Matera
St. John was born toward the end of the 11th century at Matera, a town in the Kingdom of Naples. On reaching adulthood, he joined a monastery on the island of Taranto. His single-mindedness in keeping the Rule created problems for the others monks and led John to leave. Seeking a monastery that would fit his makeup, the Saint went to Calabria and then to Sicily. In his quest he returned to the mainland at Ginosa. He rebuilt a church nearby dedicated to St. Peter.
- Read more about St. John here.
Bl. Margareta Ebner
Margareta Ebner was a Nun of the Order of Preachers. Bl. Margaret was born in 1291 at Donauworth in Bavaria and made her profession in the Dominican monastery at Maria Medingen in 1306. By her own account, her true conversion to God began in 1311, when she was twenty years old. Shortly thereafter she fell seriously ill and remained bedridden for nearly thirteen years. This life of continual suffering and prayer brought her to the heights of contemplative union with God. She became one of the most prominent of the Rhineland mystics, known and admired by her Dominican brothers, John Tauler and Henry Suso.