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Easter: May 15th

Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter; Optional Memorial of St. Isidore (USA)


May 15, 2024 (Readings on USCCB website)



Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter: Graciously grant to your Church, O merciful God, that, gathered by the Holy Spirit, she may be devoted to you with all her heart and united in purity of intent. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever.

Optional Memorial of St. Isidore the Farmer: Lord God, to whom belongs all creation, and who call us to serve you by caring for the gifts that surround us, inspire us by the example of Saint Isidore to share our food with the hungry and to work for the salvation of all people. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever.


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The United States celebrates the Optional Memorial of St. Isidore the Farmer (1070-1130). He was a Spanish laborer who worked most of his life as a ploughman for a nobleman who lived near Madrid, Spain. Although working many hours a day, he never failed to attend daily Mass, and spend time praying before the Holy Eucharist. He married a maid-servant, Maria de la Cabeza, who was also canonized a saint. They were always willing to help their neighbors and worked with the poor in the city slums. In 1947, he was proclaimed the Patron of the Catholic Rural Life Conference in the United States.

Meditation for Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter:
Christ Jesus, Our Precursor into Glory

Jesus has but gone before us: He does not separate Himself from us, He does not separate us from Him. If He enters into His glorious Kingdom, it is to "go and prepare a place" for us; He promises to come again one day to take us to Himself, so that, He says, "where I am, you also may be." Thus, we are already participants in the glory and bliss of Christ Jesus; we shall be there one day in reality. Did he not ask of His Father: Volo, Pater, ut ubi sum ego, et illi sint mecum.

What power in this prayer, and what sweetness in this promise!

Let us then give ourselves up to this intimate and wholly spiritual joy. Often let us repeat to Christ Jesus during these holy days the ardent aspirations of the hymn for this feast:

Tu esto nostrum gaudium
Qui es futurus praemium;
Sit nostra in te gloria
Per cuncta semper saecula.

"Be Thou our joy, Thou Who wilt one day be our recompense; and grant that Thy glory may abide in us, for ever, and for ages of ages.
—Dom Columba Marmion, Christ in His Mysteries, p. 315

St. Isidore the Farmer
When he was barely old enough to wield a hoe, Isidore entered the service of John de Vergas, a wealthy landowner from Madrid, and worked faithfully on his estate outside the city for the rest of his life. He married a young woman as simple and upright as himself who also became a saint-Maria de la Cabeza. They had one son, who died as a child.

Isidore had deep religious instincts. He rose early in the morning to go to church and spent many a holiday devoutly visiting the churches of Madrid and surrounding areas. All day long, as he walked behind the plow, he communed with God. His devotion, one might say, became a problem, for his fellow workers sometimes complained that he often showed up late because of lingering in church too long.

He was known for his love of the poor, and there are accounts of Isidore's supplying them miraculously with food. He had a great concern for the proper treatment of animals.

He died May 15, 1130, and was declared a saint in 1622 with Ignatius of Loyola, Francis Xavier, Teresa of Avila and Philip Neri. Together, the group is known in Spain as "the five saints."

Patronage: against the death of children; agricultural workers; day laborers; farm workers; farmers; field hands; for rain; husbandmen; laborers; livestock; Mexican peasants; ranchers; Spanish peasants; rural communities; Farmers; farm workers; ranchers; rural communities; National Catholic Rural Life Conference in the United States.
See for a full listing of organizations and locations that claim St. Isidore as patron.

Symbols and Representation: White oxen; spade; hoe or rake; plough.

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