Posted by: fvbcdm | November 15, 2013

Feast of Saint Albert the Great (15 November 2013)

This date, November 15, is very meaningful to us Dominicans, especially those in Houston.  First, because it is the feast of Saint Albert the Great, our Dominican confrere who was a brilliant student of philosophy, theology, and the natural sciences, a bishop of the German city of Regensberg (called Ratisbon back in those days of the 13th century), and now a canonized saint and Doctor of the Church.  He was the most prominent teacher of Saint Thomas Aquinas in our Order, which alone gives him a reason to be highly respected.

Then, our church of the Holy Rosary here in Houston was dedicated on November 15, 1933—[eighty] years ago today.  In the early 1990s, the church was struck by lightning and part of the roof burned.  The building was restored exactly as it had been before the fire, and was reopened for divine worship on November 15 of that year.  I remember so well one of our most active parishioners named Lane Conway who was heart-broken when the fire took place and the church had to be closed for about six months.  She refused to go into the building until it was ready for use again, and on that wonderful November 15, when the doors were opened for the first Mass in the repaired church, she was a VERY happy parishioner!

Saint Albert was a German who spent much of his life teaching in the city of Cologne.  Because of his brilliance, the Pope insisted on his becoming a bishop, but after just two years, Albert persuaded the next Pope to allow him to go back to his classroom where his heart lay.  Because of his interest in the natural sciences as well as the more abstract philosophy and theology, he has been made the patron saint of those who work in the sciences, study them, and teach them.

It struck me as very appropriate that in today’s newspaper, an American educator is lamenting the fact that our educational system is poor in this country.  Despite the greatness and wealth of the nation, many of our children are not learning as they should and our educational achievements are less than they should be.  And in the gospel reading of today’s Mass of Saint Albert, we find the passage in which Our Lord praises the two servants who doubled their master’s money during his absence.  He commended them and welcomed them into a higher level in his service.  Our intelligence, educational abilities, knowledge, and wisdom have been given us by God, and He expects us to use them to our advantage and that of our fellow men.  We might ask through the intercession of Saint Albert the Great that these things be accomplished in our nation and indeed the whole world.    Thank you for seeking God’s truth.  God bless you.  Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  This is a CDM composed by Father Brown in the past.

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