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Lifelong Catechesis

Forming Catholic identity across generations
November 23, 2017
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Ordinary Time

For a large part of the liturgical year, we devote ourselves to listening to the mystery of Christ in all its aspects unfolded as we seek God's truth and understanding.

Saint of the Week

Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Christopher, Martyr, Third Century

Christopher is one of the most popular saints in both the East and in the West. Many stories surround him, some contradictory and confusing.

One of the most popular traditions holds that Christopher was a strong giant who made his living by carrying people across a raging stream. For years, he searched in vain to find someone more powerful than himself. He finally concluded that this could only be Christ, since the devil feared Christ.

One of his passengers was a small child who grew so heavy as they crossed the stream that Christopher thought they would both drown. The child then identified himself as Christ and the heaviness was caused by the weight of the world on his shoulders.

Saint Christopher was martyred during the reign of Decius in about 251. His name means Christ-bearer and as a result of this legend, he is the patron of travelers especially, in modern times, of motorists.

Christopher's message today: We are much luckier than Christopher. While we can all carry Jesus within us, he does not burden us with the weight of the world. Rather, he lifts our burdens from us and helps us to carry them if we follow him.

  • When your burdens seem too heavy for you to carry, do you turn to Jesus for help? Perhaps Saint Christopher will intercede on your behalf if you say a prayer to him.