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All Issues > Volume 15, Issue 6

<< Monday, November 15, 1999 >> St. Albert the Great
1 Maccabees 1:10-15, 41-43, 54-57, 62-63
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Psalm 119:53, 61, 134, 150, 155, 158 Luke 18:35-43
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"He authorized them to introduce the way of living of the Gentiles. Thereupon they built a gymnasium in Jerusalem according to the Gentile custom." —1 Maccabees 1:13-14

King Antiochus Epiphanes defiled the Temple by erecting "the horrible abomination upon the altar of holocausts" (1 Mc 1:54). "Any scrolls of the law which they found they tore up and burnt" (1 Mc 1:56). "Women who had had their children circumcised were put to death, in keeping with the decree, with the babies hung from their necks; their families also and those who had circumcised them were killed" (1 Mc 1:60-61). "Terrible affliction was upon Israel" (1 Mc 1:63).

The beginning of such abominations, sacrileges, and persecutions was the building of a gymnasium. For the Greeks, a gymnasium was not only a place for recreation but also for socialization. At a Greek gymnasium, young men were introduced not only to sports but also to homosexual practices, pagan philosophy, and secular politics. The effect of this multi-faceted exposure to half-truths, confusions, and lies was the undermining of the true faith. The Jews at the gymnasium "covered over the mark of their circumcision and abandoned the holy covenant; they allied themselves with the Gentiles and sold themselves to wrongdoing" (1 Mc 1:15).

Today, the true faith is again being undermined, and we are preparing the way for unspeakable abominations. This is being done through the sports-entertainment mega-systems. This may be the modern counterpart to the Greek gymnasium.

Pray with the blind man of Jericho: Lord, "I want to see" (Lk 18:41).

Prayer: Father, let me see our culture of death the way You want me to see it.
Promise: "At that very moment he was given his sight and began to follow Him, giving God the glory." —Lk 18:43
Praise: St. Albert was a brilliant scientist, theologian, teacher, defender of the faith, and is a Doctor of the Church.
Nihil obstat: Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, April 10, 1999
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 16, 1999
The Nihil obstat and Imprimatur are a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free from doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil obstat and Imprimatur agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.
Volume 15, Issue 6
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