Overview of Early Christianity in Rome (From St Paul to Constantine)

Jews and Christians

Jesus was a Jew.  The Gospel of Luke gives the geneology of Jesus going all the way back to Adam – our Father in the Flesh.  The Gospel of St Matthew also begins by giving the geneology of Jesus in the line descended from the Jewish Patriarch – Abraham – our Father in Faith.

The chronology of salvation history is intimitely intwined with these two geneologies which show Jesus as the fulfilment of all that had come before.  If you read the Jewish Scriptures contained in the Old Testament of the Bible, the Jewish religion hangs upon the principle of family – that certain people were part of God’s family – and that you were made part of God’s family by a binding Covenant between God and mankind.

There were 5 major covenants in the Jewish development:

Continue reading “Overview of Early Christianity in Rome (From St Paul to Constantine)”

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Padre Pio Feast in Rome

Padre Pio now known as St Pio of Pietreclena after his canonisation in 2014 by Pope John Paul II, was born Francesco Forgione May 25, 1887, to a devout Catholic family in Pietrelcina, Italy. At the age of 15, he joined the Capuchin Friars, and eventually became a priest with the order.

Throughout his life, Padre Pio was known as a mystic who experienced the stigmata for 50 years. Many miracles and wonders have been attributed to him, including reports of healing, soul-reading, levitation and even bi-location.

Tomorrow – 23rd September is his feast day. To commemorate and celebrate this event, devotees will celebrate an entire week of events & activities in Rome.

Gathering in the Parish of San Salvatore in Lauro close to Piazza Navona, which will serve as a hub of those wishing to celebrate his feast, groups have a whole host of activities planned.  The parish will also be home numerous relics of Padre Pio, including his cloak, gloves, stole and blood from the wounds of the stigmata that marked his body for 50 years.

Padre Pio
Padre Pio’s semi incorrupt body

Celebrations will culminate on Padre Pio’s Sept. 23 feast with several Masses said throughout the day as well as a procession of a statue of the saint and his relics from San Salvatore to Piazza Navona, which will take place in the afternoon.

Rome is full of relics of the saints, but the greatest relics contained in Rome are those concerning the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Constantine’s mother, St Helena, brought these from Jerusalem to Rome in the 4th Century. Why not join our Passion of Christ Tour to experience them first hand as part of a pilgrimage to Rome.

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Caravaggio’s Calling of St Matthew

The artist Caravaggio’s ‘Calling of St Matthew’ is a thought provoking work by this artistic master of light and darkness.

This painting can be found in the Contarelli Chapel of the Church of St Louis of France (San Luigi dei Francesi) just 2 minutes walk from the Pantheon and on our Caravaggio Tour.  The other two paintings in the side chapel are entitled the Inspiration of St Matthew, and the Martyrdom of St Matthew.  All three were painted by Caravaggio under the commission of the French Cardinal Matthieu Cointerel (Contarelli in Italian).

The Feast of St Matthew the Apostle is held on 21st September and thus in his honour we will look at Caravaggio’s focus on the conversion and calling of St Matthew as he presented it in his artistic masterpiece in 1599. Continue reading “Caravaggio’s Calling of St Matthew”

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The Divine Mercy in Rome

At this time of the Feast of the Divine Mercy in Rome during this Holy Jubilee Year of Mercy, the buzz word in Rome at the moment is MERCY.

We are immersed within a Holy Jubilee Year of Mercy with Pope Francis choosing the official reflection of “Merciful like the Father”.

We are also in the midst of Easter Week with the Feast of the Divine Mercy in Rome taking place on Sunday – Divine Mercy Sunday.

So what’s it all about, and will Rome be doing anything special as a result of this double whammy of mercy this week? Continue reading “The Divine Mercy in Rome”

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