Tuesday, September 16, 2008

St Anne's body arrives in France


Taken from the book, St Anne, Grandmother of Our Saviour by Frances Parkinson Keyes.
After the death of Christ, the Jewish people were antagonistic towards the new, growing faith that resentment which reached greater heights a decade later. Fourteen years after Christ’s death and resurrection, the three siblings, Lazarus, Martha and Mary Magdalene found themselves, along with a group of Christians with them, under attack. It is not hard to see why Lazarus in particular would be viewed with hostility by the Sanhedrin, who had no belief in an after life and would have been troubled and angered by the growing fame of Lazarus, ‘the man who was raised from the tomb’ by Christ Himself. There were a couple of well known biblical characters in this group besides the three siblings – the two Mary’s - Mary Jacobe (mother of James the lesser) and Mary Salome (mother of the apostles, James and John), St Sidonius (the blind man in the Bible healed by Christ). Also the maid to one of the Mary's, Sera (St Sarah, a native Eygptian whose cult is connected to the two Marys) and St Maximin, the cousin to the trio and the man reported to have baptized Mary Magdalene. Tradition holds that a Jewish mob forced this group into a boat and set it adrift without any oars, sails or provisions. With them they carried a revered relic – the body of St Anne, mother to Our Lady. Divine Providence kept them safe upon the sea and gently guided the boat to the shores of Southern France. They first landed at the port city of Marseilles, there Lazarus settled and became the first Bishop of Marseilles. Mary Magdalene later retreated to the region of Sainte Baume for a life of seclusion and contemplation, after initially supporting her brother’s missionary work. The two Mary’s went by a smaller sea vessel with Sera to a wild and marshy, sea port region later to be named, Ste-Maries-de-la-Mer. It was a fishing village, built on an island in the heart of the Camargue, where the Petit Rh├┤ne joins the sea. The original village was grouped around the Notre-Dame-de-la-Mer church which had been built originally as an oratory to the Virgin by these first missionaries. St Martha went to Tarascon, a town that converted to Christianity after Martha defeated the Tarasque (sea monster) that had been terrorizing the district. The body of St Anne had been safe in the keeping of Lazarus in Marseilles initially until it became the scene of repeated invasion and siege. In time a successor to Lazarus decided that this holy relic was not safe and after receiving counsel with other churchmen it was decided that the Bishopric of Apt, founded by St Maximin, should have the honour of keeping and protecting her venerated remains. To be continued next week!

2 comments:

Maria Therese said...

Dear Anne,

Could you PLEASE pray for me? I'm now having a bunch of hormone tests done. I found out my estrogen level on day 10 of my cycle is 304.5 (The new docor said that was "great"). I will be having blood tests on my progesterone, FSH, ect. soon. I am praying for good results. I have lost thirteen pound so far and I am trying to improve my health, reduce the pain from the endometriosis, and increase my fertility. My next visit with my new doctor is Oct. 3rd. I am praying for some encouragement, hope, and good news on my hormone levels from the doctor.

I am having difficulty praying lately (I used to pray the rosary every day) and keeping my hopes up. Since I was married, I prayed the rosary and novenas for a baby, but still no baby. I am afraid of more bad news in regards to my hormones from the doctor. I guess I need to pray more and trust in God! It's just been so disappointing to me to pray all those rosaries and novenas, but still no baby. Also where I work we have two pregnant young ladies and today they talked about their pregnancies and their babies while I was in the room. I did manage to keep a happy face while they were in the room, but after everyone left the room I felt like crying. I am not sure that at my age 42 and with the endometriosis, I should just give up?? I am hoping and praying this weight loss and eating better will help things.

Do you know of any natural foods or vitamins that might be able to increase my fertility??

Thank you for reading this and for the prayers!!

May God Bless you and your family.

Could you recommend a novena for me to pray??

I am trying to do all I can do to better my health and fertility and let God do the rest, but it's very difficult! I really want to be a good Catholic Mom, breast feed, homeschool, ect. It makes me so sad to think we might not be able to have a child. My husband says adopting is too expensive and we can't afford it so I guess the only way for me to be a Mom is to have our own child. It seems impossible though. I'm trying not to give up hope.

Love,
Maria <---who really misses saying her rosary which always comforted me and made me feel better

Janette said...

I cannot wait to read the rest. I have never heard this story!