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The Catholic Defender: Saint Paschal Baylon

In Paschal’s lifetime the Spanish empire in the New World was at the height of its power, though France and England were soon to reduce its influence. The 16th century has been called the Golden Age of the Church in Spain, for it gave birth to Ignatius of Loyola, Francis Xavier, Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Peter of Alcantara, Francis Solano, and Salvator of Horta.

Paschal’s Spanish parents were poor and pious. Between the ages of seven and 24 he worked as a shepherd and began a life of mortification. He was able to pray on the job and was especially attentive to the church bell, which rang at the Elevation during Mass. Paschal had a very honest streak in him. He once offered to pay owners of crops for any damage his animals caused!

In 1564, Paschal joined the Friars Minor and gave himself wholeheartedly to a life of penance. Though he was urged to study for the priesthood, he chose to be a brother. At various times he served as porter, cook, gardener, and official beggar.

His jobs included serving as a cook and gardener as well as the official beggar who went around asking for alms. As porter his duties entailed tending to the poor who came to the friars' door. Paschal gained a reputation for his remarkable humility, unfailing courtesy, and generosity.

Paschal was careful to observe the vow of poverty. He would never waste any food or anything given for the use of the friars. When he was porter and took care of the poor coming to the door, he developed a reputation for great generosity. The friars sometimes tried to moderate his liberality!

He served as a shepherd alongside his father in his childhood and adolescence, but desired to enter the religious life. He was refused once but later was admitted as a Franciscan lay brother and became noted for his strict austerities, as well as his love for and compassion towards the sick. He was sent to counter the arguments of the Calvinists in France but was chased out and nearly killed by a mob. He was best known for his strong and deep devotion to the Eucharist.

On one occasion, in the course of a journey through France, he defended the dogma of the Real Presence against a Calvinist preacher, and in consequence, narrowly escaped death at the hands of a Huguenot mob.

Paschal spent his spare moments praying before the Blessed Sacrament. In time, many people sought his wise counsel. People flocked to his tomb immediately after his burial; miracles were reported promptly. Paschal was canonized in 1690 and was named patron of eucharistic congresses and societies in 1897.

Pascal died on the same feast on which he was born - the Feast of Pentecost - in 1592. An unusual number of miracles took place at his tomb. As a result of these miracles and because of his exceptional dedication the Holy Eucharist, Pascal was canonized in 1690.

Paschal, are the strange happenings known as the "Knocks of St. Paschal." At first, the knocks came from Paschal's tomb. Later they came from relics and pictures of the saint. Sometimes the knocks have come as a kind of warning, to let people know that a terrible event was about to take place.

The Paschal Mystery is closely linked to ideas about redemption and salvation. It refers to four ideas about the process that Jesus went through to save humanity from sin. These are his life, death and resurrection, and finally his ascension.

The Paschal Mystery reveals that Christ's Passion and death, in loving obedience to his Father's will, were necessary to bring to fruition God's plan of salvation, his Resurrection is proof and affirmation that God's saving plan has been fulfilled, and his Ascension enables the Church to continue to make salvation ...

Paschal “of or relating to Easter or to Passover” derives from Late Latin paschālis, of the same meaning, which is the adjectival form of Pascha “Easter, Passover.” Pascha, as with many words in Latin that contain the telltale ch, is adapted from Ancient Greek Páscha, which is itself borrowed from Aramaic pasḥā.

According to the Book of Exodus, God (Yahweh) commanded Moses to tell the Israelites to mark a lamb's blood above their doors in order that the Angel of Death would pass over them. Paschal refers to the passage of God's destroying angel on the night of Passover.

Five grains of incense (most often red), which are embedded in the candle (sometimes encased in wax "nails") during the Easter Vigil to represent the five wounds of Jesus: the three nails that pierced his hands and feet, the spear thrust into his side, and the thorns that crowned his head.

The Paschal candle is also known as the Easter candle in the Roman Catholic Church. It is a very large candle which is decorated with important Christian symbols. These include the letters alpha and omega, the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, which symbolize the belief that God is eternal.

We proclaim your Death, O Lord, and profess your Resurrection until you come again. When we eat this Bread and drink this Cup, we proclaim your Death, O Lord, until you come again. Save us, Savior of the world, for by your Cross and Resurrection, you have set us free.

The 4 candles of Advent names are hope, love, joy, and peace, representing the virtues Jesus brought us.

Why are altar candles lit right to left? They are lit and extinguished in a particular order so that the Gospel side candle is never burning alone. The Gospel side of the church is the left side as you are facing the front. So the candles are lit from right to left and extinguished from left to right.

His tomb in Villarreal became an immediate place of pilgrimage and there were soon miracles that were reported at his tomb.[4]Pope Paul V beatified him on 29 October 1618, and Pope Alexander VIII canonized him on 16 October 1690.

Prayer before the Blessed Sacrament occupied much of Saint Francis’ energy. Most of his letters were to promote devotion to the Eucharist. Paschal shared that concern. An hour in prayer before our Lord in the Eucharist could teach all of us a great deal. Some holy and busy Catholics today find that their work is enriched by those minutes regularly spent in prayer and meditation.


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