1 Cor. 1:18-25
Today is the Feast of Justin, martyred in Rome, 167 A.D.
Justin was born early in the 2nd Century, near Shechem in Samaria. He was brought up as a pagan. In his youth he began to study philosophy. He searched for a philosophy that would be true to his view of life. After some searching he adopted Platonism. But not long after he had chosen that he met an old man at the sea shore who convinced him of the truth of Christian teaching. It was a chance meeting, but one having great significance. Justin said of this encounter, “Straightway a flame was kindled in my soul!” Soon after that he was baptized. As a Christian Philosopher, wearing the robe of a philosopher he taught Christianity.
At about the middle of that century he gathered some students and formed a school of Christian philosophy in the city of Rome. During this period he began writing in defense of Christian doctrine and beliefs. Three of these writings have survived.
The Gospel Reading for today is a discourse of Jesus making it clear that he did not come into the world on his own as an individual. We heard; “Whoever believes in me believes not in me but in him who sent me. And whoever sees me sees him who sent me.” (Jn 12: 44-45)
Today we honor Justin, martyred in Rome in the year 167 (A.D.)
What is there about a martyr that makes him, or her, significant? How can any of the martyrs help us to grow in the Christian faith? One way is for us to be mindful of the witness of the martyrs. (cf. SSJE Rule. of Life, Ch. 38)