City of Heaven
Heaven is described in the Bible as a Place, as a City:
"the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, the New
Jerusalem" (Heb.12:22, Rev.21:1-2, 10, Is.66:1-22).
Here is the bible’s description:
1- It is a gigantic, enormous city:
"I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven
from God... The angel who talked with me had a measuring rod of gold
to measure the city, its gates and its walls. The city was laid out
like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the
rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia in length, and as wide and high
as it is long." (Rev.21:2, 15-17)
12,000 stadia are about 1,400 miles, 2,2000 kilometers... The length
of the whole world known at that time!... and the same length in high!...
and it is not plane, but tri-dimensional... going up another 1,400
2- The Walls:
"He measured its wall and it was 144 cubits thick, by man's measurement,
which the angel was using. The wall was made of jasper, and the city
of pure gold, as pure as glass. The foundations of the city walls
were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation
was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth
emerald, the fifth sardonyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite,
the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh
jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst" (Rev.21:17-20)
3- Twelve Gates:
"It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve
angels at the gates. On the gates were written the names of the twelve
tribes of Israel. There were three gates on the east, three on the
north, three on the south and three on the west. The wall of the city
had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles
of the Lamb... The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made
of a single pearl" (Rev.21:12-14, 21)
The 12 gates are the symbol of the 12 tribes of Israel, and the 12
apostles... it is a universal City, with people coming from the north,
south, east and west...
4- The City itself is gorgeous:
"And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and
high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven
from God. It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like
that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal...
The great street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass"
5- The Lamb is its light... the splendor... the judge:
The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the
glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations
will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their
splendor into it. On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there
will be no night there. The glory and honor of the nations will be
brought into it. Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone
who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names
are written in the Lamb's book of life." (Rev.21:23-27)
6- It is eternal:
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear
as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the
middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river
stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its
fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing
of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God
and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him.
They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There
will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the
light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they
will reign for ever and ever." (Rev.22:1-5).
The Tree of Life, beside the River of Water of Life, first pictured
in Eden (Gen.2:9-10)... Paradise restored!... Fullness of life flows
from the the Father through the son, the Lamb, by the power of the
spirit... later in Ezequiel 47:1-12, appears in his vision of Healing
Waters... every desire is met in the kind of fruit available
7- This is how John saw Heaven through
an open door: In Rev.4:
1. After this I looked, and there before me was a
door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking
to me like a trumpet said, "Come up here, and I will show you
what must take place after this."
2. At once I was in the Spirit, and there before
me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it.
3. And the one who sat there had the appearance of
jasper and carnelian. A rainbow, resembling an emerald, encircled
4. Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones,
and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white
and had crowns of gold on their heads.
5. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and
peals of thunder. Before the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These
are the seven spirits of God.
6. Also before the throne there was what looked like
a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the center, around the throne,
were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front
and in back
7. The first living creature was like a lion, the
second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth
was like a flying eagle.
8. Each of the four living creatures had six wings
and was covered with eyes all around, even under his wings. Day and
night they never stop saying: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God
Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come."
9. Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks
to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever,
10. the twenty-four elders fall down before him who
sits on the throne, and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They
lay their crowns before the throne and say:
11. "You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive
glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your
will they were created and have their being."
OF THE SAINTS
St. Felix II
St Felix II, the pope is an ancestor of the future Pope St. Gregory the Great who lived from 540 to 604.
Blessed Charles the Good
Count Charles of Flanders, was called "the good" by the people of his kingdom. They named him for what they found him to truly be.
Blessed Katharine Drexel
Blessed Katharine was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on November 26, 1858. Katharine's mother died when she was a baby.
St. Casimir was born in 1458, son of Casimir IV, king of Poland. Casimir was one of thirteen children.
St. John Joseph of the Cross
St. John Joseph of the Cross was born in southern Italy on the feast of the Assumption, 1654. He was a young noble, but he dressed like a poor man.
St. Nicolette was named in honor of St. Nicholas of Myra. She was born in 1380. Her loving parents nicknamed her Colette from the time she was a baby.
St. Perpetua and St. Felicity
St. Perpetua and St. Felicity lived in Carthage, North Africa, in the third century. It was the time of the fierce persecution of Christians by Emperor Septimus Severus.
St. John of God
St. John was born in Portugal on March 8, 1495. His parents were poor, but deeply Christian. John was a restless boy.
St. Frances of Rome
St. Frances was born in 1384. Her parents were wealthy, but they taught Frances to be concerned about people and to live a good Christian life.
St. Simplicius became pope in 468. Sometimes it seemed to him that he was all alone in trying to correct evils that were everywhere.
St. Eulogius of Spain
St. Eulogius lived in the ninth century. His family was well-known and he received an excellent education. While he learned his lessons, he also learned from the good example of his teachers.
St. Fina (Seraphina)
St. Fina was born in a little Italian town called San Geminiano. Her parents had once been well off, but misfortune had left them poor.
St. Euphrasia was born in the fifth century to deeply Christian parents. Her father, a relative of the emperor, died when she was a year old.
St. Matilda was born about 895, the daughter of a German count. When she was still quite young, her parents arranged her marriage to a nobleman named Henry.
St. Zachary was a Benedictine monk from Greece who lived in the eighth century. He became a cardinal and then pope.
Blessed Torello was born in 1202, in Poppi, Italy. His life as a child in the village was ordinary and uneventful. But after his father's death.
St. Patrick was believed born in fifth-century Britain to Roman parents. When he was sixteen, he was captured by pirates and taken to Ireland.
St. Cyril of Jerusalem
St. Cyril was born around 315 when a new phase was beginning for Christians. Before that date, the Church was persecuted by the emperors.
St. Joseph is a great saint. He was Jesus' foster-father and Mary's husband.
St. Cuthbert lived in England in the seventh century. He was a poor shepherd boy who loved to play games with his friends.
St. Serapion lived in Egypt in the fourth century. Those were exciting times for the Church and for St. Serapion.
St. Deogratias was ordained bishop of the City of Carthage when it was taken over by barbarian armies in 439.
St. Turibius of Mongrovejo
St. Turibius was born in 1538 in Leon, Spain. He became a university professor and then a famous judge.
Blessed Didacus Joseph was born on March 29, 1743, in Cadiz, Spain. He was baptized Joseph Francis.
ANNUNCIATION OF THE LORD
The time arrived for Jesus to come down from heaven. God sent the Archangel Gabriel to the town of Nazareth where Mary lived.
St. Ludger was born in northern Europe in the eighth century. After he had studied hard for many years, he was ordained a priest.
St. John of Egypt
St. John was man who desired to be alone with God was to become one of the most famous hermits of his time.
St. Tutilo lived in the late ninth and early tenth centuries. He was educated at the Benedictine monastery of Saint-Gall.
St. Jonas and St. Barachisius
King Sapor of Persia reigned in the fourth century. He hated Christians and persecuted them cruelly. He destroyed their churches and monasteries.
St. John Climacus
St. John was believed born in Palestine in the seventh century. He seems to have been a disciple of St. Gregory Nazianzen.
Blessed Joan of Toulouse
In 1240, some Carmelite brothers from Palestine started a monastery in Toulouse, France.
PHOTO OF THE MONTH
of the Relics of the Passion
for Holy Relics)
Why did Jesus, the sinless one sent from the Father in heaven,
submit himself to John’s baptism? John preached a
baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke
3:3). In this humble submission we see a foreshadowing of
the “baptism” of Jesus bloody death upon the
cross. Jesus’ baptism is the acceptance and the beginning
of his mission as God’s suffering Servant (Isaiah
52:13-15; 53:1-12). He allowed himself to be numbered among
sinners. Jesus submitted himself entirely to his Father’s
will. Out of love he consented to this baptism of death
for the remission of our sins. Do you know the joy of trust
and submission to God?