Friday, August 31, 2012

The Holy Grail: Fr. Andersen

Fr. Eric M. Andersen, Sacred Heart in Gervais, Oregon, always has such interesting tidbits to add to the notes in the Roman Martyrology! Here's another of his commentaries:

August 31st, 2012

Sts. Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, disciples of the Lord

The Roman Martyrology for August 31st, the day before the Kalends of September:
At Jerusalem, the commemoration of saints Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, who received the corpse of Jesus taken down from the cross, enveloped it in linen and placed it in the monument. Joseph, a noble captain of ten men, and a disciple of the Lord, was awaiting the kingdom of God; whereupon Nicodemus, a prince of the Jews, from the Pharisees, came to Jesus in the night asking about his mission and before the high priests and Pharisees, who were wishing to apprehend Jesus, defended his cause.

…And elsewhere, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.

Thanks be to God.

Just a quick note on the legend of St. Joseph of Arimathea. It is said that he was given the Holy Sangreal, or Grail, the chalice of Christ from the Last Supper, by Christ Himself and that in it he collected the blood of Christ at the Cross. He was punished for burying Christ and was himself kept a prisoner in a tomb and lived off the Eucharist which miraculously filled the chalice each day. He was rescued and came to England in 63 AD where he converted many to the True Faith. 

The sangreal was then kept and guarded by his descendants in a castle. Over time, the location of the castle was forgotten but there was a prophecy in King Arthur’s court that one day the grail would be rediscovered by a descendent of St. Joseph of Arimathea. It would be a man pure of heart, chaste and worthy of the relic. That man was Sir Galahad. He unknowingly sat in the seat at the Round Table known as the “siege perilous.” This marked him as the worthy knight and he set off on the quest to find the holy grail. Sir Lancelot also set off but was found unworthy. Sir Galahad was holy far above the other knights and he alone was found worthy to obtain and once again to guard the holy sangreal as a descendent of St. Joseph of Arimathea. 

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