Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
September 30, when it does not fall on a Sunday, is celebrated as the Feast of St. Jerome. One of the great doctors of the Church, St. Jerome is best known for his work in translating Sacred Scripture into a definitive Latin edition. He was a brilliant scholar and theologian, and those pursuits often placed him in major cities and centers of learning and culture. At the same time, St. Jerome was an ascetic and champion of moral and spiritual rigor. This rigor sometimes lead public opinion to be against him. Even other saints of the era disliked Jerome, whose patience with those who did not rise to his level of asceticism or who did not agree with him on fine points of theology was famously thin.
Beginning around the year 382, St. Jerome set to work translating the Bible. His desire was to make more accurate translations. He lived in Jerusalem for a time to improve his grasp of the Hebrew language. Most famously, St. Jerome moved to a cave outside Bethlehem, where he worked until the year 405 taking Greek and Hebrew Scriptures and translating them into Latin (then a commonly spoken language). St. Jerome wasn’t done, though. He spent the next fifteen or so years writing commentaries on Scripture, explaining the meaning of the texts and offering spiritual meditations on the Word of God. Additionally, he employed his great knowledge of the Bible in offering spiritual direction and a plan for the spiritual life to many people. He died on September 30, 420.
The feast of St. Jerome reminds us of the great value of the Bible for every person’s spiritual life. For many, reading the Bible is a challenging and daunting task. Fortunately, resources are available! I encourage you (everyone!) to participate in our Lifelong Faith Formation program (register online here: https://www.st-pius.org/lff-monthly/), which focuses this year on the story of our salvation contained in Scripture. For a resource you can use anywhere, set up an account with FORMED.org (go to www.st-pius.formed.org and follow the instructions). FORMED.org has a number of online Scripture studies available. Walking With Purpose is an outstanding women’s ministry, rooted in an in-depth study of the Bible. Our twice-a-month Bible and Brew provides another chance to break open the Word. Through our parish subscription to Flocknote, we have special access to resources from Bishop Robert Barron and his Word on Fire apostolate. To opt-in to our Flocknote communications, text “SPXFFLD” to 84576 to get text and email updates, not only from Word on Fire, but also about events and opportunities here at St. Pius X.
Let us ask the intercession of St. Jerome, that we may all be true students of the Word of God, and that our efforts to understand this divinely-inspired message may bear great fruit in our lives, families, and homes.