(06) 358 5403

Welcome to St Peter's

Current Feasts, Saints and other Holy Days

St Basil the Great - June 14

Bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, Teacher of the Faith

St Basil the Great

St Basil was a significant leader of the church in the later fourth century, not only in his native Cappadocia, but throughout the eastern church. His provisions for the monastic movement gave it a shape that has had permanent effect on the church.

Basil was born about 330 in Caesarea in Cappadocia, Asia Minor (not to be confused with Caesarea in Palestine). He received a thorough education in the best pagan and Christian centres of the day. He contemplated an academic career, but was attracted to the ascetic ideals of the age, in which only a life lived in the power of the Spirit and subject to God was truly worth living. It was a call to a life of intense self-discipline that set one free to be at one with God and God’s world.

For Basil, asceticism was not an end in itself. Rather, for him the key to the monastic life was love, and therefore it was to be lived in community. For a while Basil lived in community on his family estates. His brother Gregory of Nyssa and his sister Macrina were also significant figures in the church in the later Roman Empire. Basil laid the foundation for his two sets of monastic rules, which were very influential for monasticism throughout the church in the east and also in the west, only being superseded in the west by the Rule of St Benedict. Basil provided for spiritual discipline in a round of prayer and worship coupled with manual and charitable work, but he discouraged the austerities practised by some of the hermits.

In 364 Basil was ordained presbyter. In the theological disputes of the day, he strongly supported the emphasis of the Nicene Creed on the full and essential divinity of the Son. Together with his brother Gregory of Nyssa and his close friend Gregory of Nazianzus, he did much to persuade those who were hesitant. This Nicene theology was eventually ratified at Constantinople in 381 and is incorporated in the Nicene Creed that is still regularly recited in church.

Basil’s moderating influence was not always appreciated, least of all by the emperor Valens, who sought to undermine Basil’s position by dividing his see of Cappadocia. Basil responded by making his friend Gregory bishop of the new diocese despite Gregory’s very great reluctance. Basil also wrote a treatise, On the Holy Spirit, since the debates on the Son’s relation to the Father in the Trinity had implications for the theology of the Holy Spirit too. Basil was a convinced Trinitarian and a warm supporter of the engagement of theology with the best intellectual tradition of the day.

From 370 onwards Basil was Bishop of Caesarea, and in that position had responsibilities for the churches in Pontus. He did much to organise the monastic life of the city into a significant social force as an example of community love in action. On his death in 379, Basil left to the city a complete new town on his own estates, with hospital, hospice and church, as the Church’s outreach to the poor.

Source: https://www.anglican.org.nz/Resources/Worship-Resources-Karakia-ANZPB-HKMOA/For-All-the-Saints-A-Resource-for-the-Commemorations-of-the-Calendar/For-All-the-Saints

St Antony of Padua - June 13

Missionary, Preacher, Teacher of the Faith

St Antony of Padua

Antony, baptised Ferdinand, was born in 1195 to a noble Portugese family in Lisbon. He attended the cathedral school in Lisbon, then at the age of 15 joined the Augustinian Canons. This order lived in community and engaged in work beyond their own houses. Finding there were too many distractions to his studies, Ferdinand asked permission to live in the priory at Coimbra. There he devoted himself entirely to prayer and study for eight years.

The Franciscan Order was only eleven years old, but had captured the imagination of many and grown rapidly. Its empahsis was on poverty and mission.

In 1220 the relics of five Franciscans who had been martyred in Morocco were brought to the priory. Ferdinand, fired with enthusiasm for the Franciscan ideals, obtained a release from the Augustinian Order and joined the Franciscans in their house of St Antony at Coimbra. He took the name Antony himself.

When Antony was 26 he went to Morocco, but fell ill soon after his arrival and had to return to Europe. When he set sail for Portugal, a violent storm carried the ship to Messina in Sicily. Here Antony heard of a meeting of the Franciscan General Chapter to be held in Assisi and went there.

Antony was sent to a little hospice near Forli, and engaged in the most menial tasks until called upon in an emergency to preach at an ordination. At that point, his remarkable preaching ability and profound learning were revealed. The Franciscans were already taking an interest in the emerging universities. Antony was appointed as the first lector in theology to the order and taught at Bologna, Montpellier and Toulouse.

It was through preaching that Antony exercised his greatest influence, drawing people in their thousands from all classes of society. Soon no church could be found to hold the crowds, so he preached in the open air. Much of his preaching was against greed and usury, and he was successful in bringing back to the Church many who had fallen away.Although Antony held office in the Franciscan Order, he devoted himself entirely to preaching in and around Padua.

Antony died in 1231 at the age of 26, worn out by his labours and his travels. He was canonized within a year of his death. Many legends have sprung up concerning his great love of animals, including fish, to whom he preached, and numerous miracles are associated with his relics, which remain in Padua.

Source: https://www.anglican.org.nz/Resources/Worship-Resources-Karakia-ANZPB-HKMOA/For-All-the-Saints-A-Resource-for-the-Commemorations-of-the-Calendar/For-All-the-Saints

St Barnabas the Apostle - June 11

St Barnabas

Barnabas is one of the most significant members of the early church outside the Twelve. He is regarded as the founder of the church on Cyprus.

Our information about him comes mainly from the Acts of the Apostles, with some further details from Paul’s letters. Luke tells us how in the early church in Jerusalem everything was held in common, and adds that Barnabas sold an estate and gave the proceeds to the church (Acts 4:36-37).

Barnabas was a Cypriot and a Levite. Like Paul, he was a Jew from the Hellenistic world, not Palestine.

Barnabas was warmly accepted by the church in Jerusalem and vouched for Paul to them when the latter joined the church (Acts 9:27). Further evidence of Barnabas’s good standing can be seen in the fact that he was able to stay on in Jerusalem when many of the Greek-speaking Christians were scattered (Acts 8:1).

We next meet Barnabas when the church in Jerusalem entrusted him with the task of leading the church in Antioch, where Gentiles as well as Jews were beginning to respond to the gospel (Acts 11:22-24). To help him with his work, Barnabas went to Tarsus to bring Paul to Antioch (Acts 11:25-26). The church in Antioch then sent the pair of them to Jerusalem with relief funds (Acts 11:30), and commissioned them to undertake a missionary journey, which took them to Cyprus and then to Asia Minor (Acts 13 and 14). John Mark, who was also from Cyprus, accompanied them part of the way. Paul and Barnabas were mobbed in Lystra, with Barnabas being called “Zeus” and Paul “Hermes”, but Barnabas appears to have escaped the stoning that Paul received (Acts 14:8-20).

In the difficult debates over the treatment of Gentile converts to the church, Barnabas seems to have held a centrist position, relating warmly to the Gentiles, but not willing to eat with them in the presence of more conservative Jewish Christians.

Eventually Barnabas and Paul reported their successes to the church in Jerusalem (Acts 15:1-35). They then returned to Antioch with the resolutions of the Jerusalem Council on the obligations required of Gentiles joining the church. When it was suggested that Barnabas and Paul revisit the churches seen on their first missionary journey, Barnabas wanted to take his cousin John Mark, but Paul refused. Paul went off with Silas, and Barnabas and Mark went to Cyprus, which is the last we hear of Barnabas, though later tradition has it that he was martyred on Cyprus about 61 CE.

Source: https://www.anglican.org.nz/Resources/Worship-Resources-Karakia-ANZPB-HKMOA/For-All-the-Saints-A-Resource-for-the-Commemorations-of-the-Calendar/For-All-the-Saints

St Columba of Iona - June 9

Abbot, Missionary

St Columba of Iona

Columba was born in Ireland about 521 and grew up in County Donegal. He was educated in a school attached to one of the monasteries founded by Patrick.

When his schooling was hastily concluded by an outbreak of plague, he toured the northern regions of Ireland for fifteen years, preaching the gospel and establishing the monasteries of Derry and Durrow, and possibly Kells.

Columba left Ireland in 563 with twelve companions for the island of Iona off the coast of Scotland. It is not clear whether he did this out of missionary zeal, from a sense of guilt at his involvement in an altercation between two monasteries, or from a desire to help other Irish people beyond Ireland. Their life was hard, simple and austere: tilling the difficult soil and fishing the cold seas, coupled with a rigorous round of prayers and copying Christian manuscripts. Columba was a commanding figure with a vigorous commitment to the gospel, to the point of being quite harsh at times.

As the years passed, Columba mellowed, and his influence grew. He had to combat the power and influence of the Druids, but gradually Iona became the most important centre for evangelisation of the northern regions of Britain. Converts included Brude, the king of the Picts and in 574 Aidan of Dalriada, the Irish king, came to Columba for consecration.

Columba and his successors established a number of monasteries in Scotland. He maintained his contacts with Ireland, and it is probably more accurate to regard him as the leader of the Irish in Scotland than as the apostle of Scotland. His influence in Ireland included some continuing control over the monasteries he established there.

Columba also had great skills as a poet and scribe.

Columba died on 9 June 597 at the age of 76. A close friend wrote of him: He was dear to all, always showing a cheerful, holy face, and was gladdened in his inmost heart by the joy of the Holy Spirit. After Viking raids on Iona, Columba's bones were translated to Dunkeld in the ninth century.

Source: https://www.anglican.org.nz/Resources/Worship-Resources-Karakia-ANZPB-HKMOA/For-All-the-Saints-A-Resource-for-the-Commemorations-of-the-Calendar/For-All-the-Saints

229 Ruahine Street,
Palmerston North
Email: stpeters@inspire.net.nz
Phone: (06) 358 5403

Office Hours

Tuesday to Friday
9:00am to 12:00pm

Closed on Public Holidays

229 Ruahine Street,
Palmerston North
Email: stpeters@inspire.net.nz
Phone: (06) 358 5403

Office Hours

Tuesday to Friday
9:00am to 12:00pm

Closed on Public Holidays

2017 © St Peter's Curch
Design by BMR Creative
Website by NYX
Login