January 25, 2017

Memorial of St. Timothy and St. Titus

Saint Timothy and Saint Titus

January 26th, the Church celebrates the memorial of Saint Timothy and Saint Titus, bishops and missionaries in the early years of Christianity. The Divine Office recalls that: "Timothy and Titus were converted to Christianity by Saint Paul, and became his companions and helpers. Paul entrusted Timothy with the care of the Christians in Ephesus, and sent Titus to Crete to look after the Christians there. He wrote them the so-called 'pastoral' epistles, giving advice for pastors and people alike." In 2nd Timothy St. Paul instructs Timothy thusly: "I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands" (2 Tm 1:6). Msgr. Bernard Bourgeois reflects on St. Paul's words:

"Speaking to Timothy, Paul advises him 'to stir into flame the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control. So, do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord, nor of me, a prisoner for his sake; but bear your share of hardship for the Gospel with the strength that comes from God' (2 Tm 1: 6-8). Paul advises Timothy to keep his faith alive and the center of his life. While this instruction was focused on Timothy’s ministry as pastor, it can be applied to all Christians.

Follow Paul’s advice: 'Stir into flame the gift of God… ' Embers in a fireplace need to be stirred so that they may light up once again and burn longer. The same can be said for faith! In life there are many demands on one’s time, including home, work, school, friends, family, etc. The days can seem short and most people triage what’s most important. Beneath all of the busy activities of life lies one’s faith. It is the foundation of our identity and the deepest calling the human person will ever receive."

St. Titus is credited with defeating paganism and promoting Christianity as the leader of the Church in Crete. While St. Timothy was martyred, St. Titus lived well into his 90's before dying peacefully. Almighty God, who adorned Saints Timothy and Titus with apostolic virtues, grant through the intercession of them both, that, living justly and devoutly in this present age, we may merit to reach our heavenly homeland. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

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