St. Stephen Catholic School was founded August 27, 1981. As a pastor, I’ve had the good fortune to know a number of people of faith over the years, and here’s one thing they’ve all had in common: When they were in a crisis, and their faith was shaken, when they faced those inevitable times when the goodness and love of God were in doubt, they let reality re-shape their faith. P. 743. We want a truth that will not only explain things, but give meaning and purpose to our lives. Faith is never perfect: it is always being perfected. And this gets to why we claim that faith is a virtue. Stephen is described in Acts 6:5 as "full of faith, and of the Holy Ghost" and in Acts 6:8 as "full of grace and fortitude," and his talents for preaching were so great that those Hellenist Jews who disputed his teaching "were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit that spoke" (Acts 6:10). Faith isn’t faith if it flinches from reality. He never ever stops giving us faith. It is a gift. Perhaps, though, he really wanted to know: What is truth, really? The Book of Virtues. Yesterday, the world was fixated on a humble and precious infant lying in a manger. Faith is about finding the truth that will order our lives and give them meaning. A virtue is an habitual and firm disposition to do the good. This is, of course, Saul of Tarsus, who, sometime later, while traveling on the road to Damascus, encountered the Risen Christ, and became the great apostle to the Gentiles, Saint Paul. He quotes a famous patriarch of the church who says, “Faith is the enduring foundation of those who believe, putting them in the truth and putting the truth in them.”. We are committed to encouraging life-long learning, recognizing that excellence is not always perfection, but rather the attempt to do one's personal best. Saint Thomas Aquinas said that of the three Theological Virtues—faith, hope, and love—love is the first in order of importance, but faith is the first in order of occurrence. I don’t think any of us need to look very far to know how significantly faith contributes to the troubles of the world today. So we do not have the power, nor the will, nor the responsibility to grow our own faith. And that is why faith is not simply a virtue, but a theological virtue, and indeed a gift from God. Lord, have mercy on us. St. Stephen Presbyterian Church, To receive our newsletter for the latest news, events, and teachings, just simply e-mail: admin@ststephenpresbyterian.com, http://sermon.net/ststphnfw/sermonid/1200090929, “Faith is the enduring foundation of those who believe, putting them in the truth and putting the truth in them.”, Anne Lamott has said that “that the opposite of faith is not doubt, but certainty. Today we honor the first Christian martyr, St. Stephen. Today, we stand by as witnesses to the blood that was shed by St. Stephen for professing his faith in this little child. The story of Saint Stephen's ordination as a deacon is found in the sixth chapter of the Acts of the Apostles, which also recounts the plot against Stephen and the beginning of the trial that resulted in his martyrdom; the seventh chapter of Acts recounts Stephen's speech before the Sanhedrin and his martyrdom. St. Stephen, King of Hungary by Father Francis Xavier Weninger, 1876 St. Stephen, who is justly called the Apostle of the Hungarians, on account of his unwearied zeal in disseminating the true faith, was born in Hungary. Jesus does that for us. LOVE, COMPASSION, HONESTY & RESPECT. Bennett, William. The following is a list of saints recognized by the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, and/or Oriental Orthodox churches, organized alphabetically by country or nation of origin or Having said that, let’s address a common misunderstanding about faith. Virtue of the Month: Hope With God’s grace, I will never give up hope. What is true in the world? The direct descendants of Clovis were not saints, but the son of St. Stephen, Amelric, became a saint. 1803 "Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things." Class Hours: 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Think of it this way: if you’re trapped in a burning building, and there’s no way out, it doesn’t matter how hard you wish for it: if you aren’t a firefighter right at that moment, you aren’t going to become one. It is a theological virtue because it is a gift from God. The author of Hebrews calls Jesus “the author and perfecter of our faith.” What he means is that Jesus gives us the faith that we have—we do not generate it ourselves. Prudence. Scientists have determined that the average person is far more optimistic and hopeful about life than they have a right to be, given their circumstances. His defense of his faith before the Sanhedrin prior to being stoned to death points to a distinct strand of belief in early Christianity. Prudence Circumspection Docility Foresight. Father Joseph Leberer was pastor at the time. Saint Stephen, Christian deacon in Jerusalem who was the first Christian martyr. Mark 14:62), boldly proclaims, "Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God" (Acts 7:55). Scott P. Richert is senior content network manager of Our Sunday Visitor. God took human form to show that love and to save us and the world. You have to be absolutely certain, or you don’t have faith, they tell us! Faith doesn’t take away the mess of life. Some of these founding parents have grandchil­dren in our school today. The school began with the help of two sisters of the order of St.Joseph. 1. This Jesus is Lord, and that means that ultimately love, goodness, and self-sacrifice are the true purpose of creation; and that by God’s grace, we can live like Jesus Christ in a deep relationship with God that enables us to make a positive difference in the lives of others. Faith is a gift that Jesus is always giving us, and so we don’t do well to be unwilling or unable to change. Representations of Stephen in Christian art vary somewhat between East and West; in Eastern iconography, he is usually shown in the robes of a deacon (though these would not have developed until later), and often swinging a censer (the container in which incense is burned), as deacons do during the Eastern Divine Liturgy. St. Stephen Catholic Church 18858 Huron River Drive | New Boston, Michigan 48164| (734) 753-5268 He is the patron saint of deacons and stonemasons. Not much is known about Saint Stephen's origin. Virtues Girls. O Holy Saint Stephen, Beloved first Martyr, Hear our Prayers at St. Stephen School. At St Anne’s School we strive to actively promote values, virtues and e thics that shape our pupils' character and moral perspective, through the teachings of the Catholic Church. In any case, Stephen's ministry was conducted among Greek-speaking Jews, some of whom were not open to the Gospel of Christ. Ultimately it is our belief, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that being good makes a difference, and that being good is the ultimate purpose of life. Attention all young ladies grades K – 12. So whether you have the faith of a child, or whether you have the faith of the greatest theologians and saints in history, it’s the same faith, and it’s a wonderful, beautiful gift from Jesus, the author and perfecter of the faith of all of us. If we don’t have faith, he says, love and hope don’t come. If evangelization is all about bearing witness to Jesus Christ, in both words and actions, this is precisely what we see in the story of St. Stephen. To Listen to this Sermon, click here  -> http://sermon.net/ststphnfw/sermonid/1200090929. St. Stephen’s story continues to inspire me. Faith includes noticing the mess, the emptiness and discomfort, and letting it be there until some light returns.”. We aren’t perfect. I will maintain a positive attitude and look for … At some level, all of us are earnest seekers of the truth, trying to find the thing that will help us make sense of the world, a kind of unifying theory that explains why things are the way they are, and not only explains it, but explains where we fit in the big picture. Come check out the Virtue Workshops held the first and second Saturdays of each month and Wednesday evenings (grouped by age). St. Stephen, having recommended your own soul to God, cried for your enemies, Pardon them, O Lord, and punish them not for their sins,* St. Stephen, most zealous for the glory of God,* St. Stephen, most patient and constant,* St. Stephen, pattern of chastity and purity,* St. Stephen, whose heavenly fortitude caused admiration in all,* As to faith being a gift of God, well, lots of people have faith, and not all of them believe in God. AA talks about “God as you understand him,” and it could be Allah, the Emperor Hirohito, that chair over there, or even yourself. Faith is not the same thing as certainty. His father, Geisa, was a renowned leader and general of … © Copyright 2018. Great preaching and miracles were attributed to Stephen. And that’s the point. DIOCESAN VIRTUES AT ST ANNE’S. Because Stephen is a Greek name (Stephanos), and because the appointment of the deacons occurred in response to complaints by Greek-speaking Jewish Christians, it is generally assumed that Stephen was himself a Hellenist Jew (that is, a Greek-speaking Jew). MENU. Stephen was born a pagan, but as a youth, he and his father, Duke Geza, were baptized by the Bohemian bishop St. Adalbert of Prague. AMEN St. Francis de Sales - St. Stephen School is dedicated to a philosophy of building a Catholic educational community among students, teachers and parents. Stephen s popularity created enemies among some Jews, members of the Synagogue of Roman Freedmen. St. Stephen Catholic Elementary School – Home of the Sharks! The first three of these are known as the Spiritual Virtues, whilst the last four are called the Chief or Natural Virtues.The Natural Virtues had already been defined by Greek philosophers, whilst the Spiritual Virtues are a slight variation on St. Paul's trio of Love, Hope and Faith (due to variation in translation from the original: Charity and Love arguably have a high level of overlap). He and a group of committed parents were devoted to giving children a Christ centered education. Let us pray. Sometimes we think we’re wrong when we’re right. Stephen's testimony confirmed in the minds of the Sanhedrin the charge of blasphemy, "And they crying out with a loud voice, stopped their ears, and with one accord ran violently upon him" (Acts 7:56). But not only does Jesus give us our faith, He never stops giving us faith. Friend and st stephen renton mass schedule an unclaimed listing to news, your own occupancy limit based on the parish by st stephen the coming up with a community. We must have the faith to let Jesus test, change, and grow our faith—to let Jesus continue to give us this gift which gives our lives meaning and purpose. 09 January 2009 'A Crown of Many Virtues'—The Feast of Stephen Today, 27 December on the old Orthodox calendar, is the feastday of the Holy Protomartyr … But in the distance, you hear the sirens and see the flashing lights getting closer; and you know that, if you just hold out a little longer, and you don’t panic and do something stupid, the real firefighters will come up that ladder and rescue you. Christ, have mercy on us. M.A., Political Theory, Catholic University of America, B.A., Political Theory, Michigan State University. It’s important to understand that faith is a gift, particularly faith in the God of the Bible, in order for our faith to remain a virtue rather than a bane to society. Jesus is Lord and that means love, goodness, and self-sacrifice are the guiding principles of history itself, and will ultimately win out. THE VIRTUES. Fortitude. St. Gregory relates of the Abbot Stephen that he had conceived so great a love for insults, calumnies, and vexations that when he received any he thought he had made great profit, and returned affectionate thanks to whoever gave them to him; and by this he attained such reputation for sanctity that whoever did him any harm felt sure that he had secured his friendship. St Stephen's Church, Bristol – the first [citation needed] city church built outside the walls c. 1250, rebuilt c. 1430–1490. On the face of it, neither of these statements is true. The stoning of Stephen is notable not simply because he is the first Christian martyr, but because of the presence of a man named Saul, who "was consenting to his death" (Acts 7:59), and at whose feet "the witnesses laid down their garments" (Acts 7:57). When the high priest gives Stephen the chance to defend himself, he is filled with the Holy Spirit and provides (Acts 7:2-50) a remarkable exposition of salvation history, from the time of Abraham through Moses and Solomon and the prophets, ending, in Acts 7:51-53, with a rebuke of those Jews who refused to believe in Christ: The members of the Sanhedrin "were cut to the heart, and they gnashed with their teeth at him" (Acts 7:54), but Stephen, in another parallel with Christ when He was before the Sanhedrin (cf. The Bible records that Stephen "full of grace and power, did great wonders and signs among the people." Notwithstanding this, some of the Hungarian nobility dared to take up arms in defense of idolatry, and to make war against their legitimate Lord. It takes us back to Pilate’s famous question to Jesus: “What is truth?” Perhaps he was being dismissive when he said it: What does it matter what truth is? Fortitude Industriousness Magnanimity Magnificence Patience Perseverance. God loves us. Including Christianity. St. Stephen Catholic School is a large elementary school in Etobicoke with a diverse student population that places a great deal of importance on providing for a large number of students, each with different strengths and needs. Certainty is missing the point entirely. Ultimately, though, when Christian faith grows, it only grows into a larger, deeper understanding of what our faith has been from the beginning. Justice. They look askance at people struggling with questions or doubt. St. Stephen of Hungary (975-1038) played an important role in Christianizing his country. For us Christians, our faith is this: God loves us. Groups meet in the convent to pray, study and play. The faith we have is never enough—it always needs to be improved, strengthened, tested, and renewed. 62. We strongly encourage each student to nurture his or her talents and virtues in imitation of Jesus Christ. The ultimate issue of faith is truth. heavenly virtues Provides information to st stephen the martyr renton schedule above to see you have these covid response and lived. Stephen Graham gives an emotive performance as Joseph, a depressed man who turns to … If our faith is shaken by those troubles, that’s okay. God loves the world so much that God took human form in Jesus Christ, and lived, died, and rose again to demonstrate that evil and death do not have the final word in our lives or in history. Help us to model your devotion to Jesus. William Bennett writes that people of faith hold to the belief that “fundamental bedrock reality is both unified and good.”(1)  This belief that reality is unified and good, he says, is the source of our ability to work for the betterment of the world, in spite of its overwhelming challenges, and he points to this as the source of what’s best in any religion. However, a tradition arising in the fifth century claims that Stephen's original name was Kelil, an Aramaic word that means "crown," and he was called Stephen because Stephanos is the Greek equivalent of his Aramaic name. First of all, many people make a quite credible case that faith doesn’t do good in the world—It’s actually the source of the world’s greatest problems. He is sometimes depicted holding a small church. Acts 6:15 notes that the members of the Sanhedrin, "looking on him, saw his face as if it had been the face of an angel." To describe St. Stephen, the Holy Ghost utilized the same expression – “full of grace” – that the Archangel Gabriel used to greet Our Lady, which is a great honor for St. Stephen. One of the first seven deacons of the Christian Church, Saint Stephen is also the first Christian to be martyred for the Faith (hence the title, often applied to him, of protomartyr—that is, "first martyr"). Justice Affability Courtesy Generosity Gratitude Kindness Loyalty Obedience Patriotism Prayerfulness Religion Respect Responsibility Sincerity Trustworthiness. 451 Napa Valley Ave., Woodbridge L4H 1Y8 Phone: 905-893-7557 Fax: 905-893-2302. Saint Thomas Aquinas said that of the three Theological Virtues—faith, hope, and love—love is the first in order of importance, but faith is the first in order of occurrence. Because we aren’t perfect, we aren’t trying to shove our opinions down other people’s throats, or tell them how right we are and how wrong they are. Unable to combat Stephen's preaching, his opponents found men who were willing to lie about what Saint Stephen taught, to claim that "they had heard him speak words of blasphemy against Moses and against God" (Acts 6:11). So this is a good time to reflect on the nature of generosity itself. So of course, faith is a virtue. It's an interesting remark when we consider that these are the men sitting in judgment on Stephen. Jesus will return and establish love, goodness, healing, and oneness with God, creation, and one another forever. Learn Religions uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Faith includes noticing the mess, the emptiness and discomfort, and letting it be there until some light returns.”, Service of Witness to the Resurrection for Kristen Mueller Adams, Welcome Home Basket & Outreach Team Box Project to Serve Homeless Community. Because Stephen is mentioned first among the seven men ordained as deacons in Acts 6:5-6, and is the only one singled out for his attributes ("a man full of faith, and of the Holy Ghost"), he is often regarded as the first deacon as well as the first martyr. Sometimes we think we’re right when we’re wrong. New York: Simon & Shuster, 1993. Welcome to St. Stephen School With Love, Compassion, Honesty and Respect We recognize and accept the uniqueness of each individual. Media in category "Virtues in St. Stephen's Cathedral (Passau)" The following 10 files are in this category, out of 10 total. Stephen is described in Acts 6:5 as "full of faith, and of the Holy Ghost" and in Acts 6:8 as "full of grace and fortitude," and his talents for preaching were so great that those Hellenist Jews who disputed his teaching "were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit that spoke" ( Acts 6:10 ). Many believers in some organized faith, whether Christianity or any faith really, believe that faith is meant to counteract the uncertainty of life. St Stephen's Tower is the smaller tower in the middle of the building. V. Obatin for us, O blessed Stephen, the virtue of holy charity: R. For which thou wast so eminent and we are so needy. Dom St. Stephan (Passau) 01.jpg 3,281 × 1,985; 1.61 MB That’s faith, and it is faith one can have without ever believing God—it’s just a vague sense of well-being that gets us through life. St. Stephen was a saint whose conversion brought the Hungarian nation to the Church. At the age of twenty Stephen married Gisela, the sister of the Emperor St… He has written about Catholicism for outlets including Humanitas and Catholic Answers Magazine. In Western art, Stephen is often depicted holding the stones that were the instrument of his martyrdom, as well as a palm (a symbol of martyrdom); both Western and Eastern art sometimes depict him wearing the martyr's crown. By using Learn Religions, you accept our, Stephen in the Bible Was the First Christian Martyr, The Stoning of Stephen: A Bible Story Study Guide, Introduction to the Catholic Religion: Beliefs, Practices and History, Pentecost Sunday and the Coming of the Holy Spirit, Holy Days of Obligation in the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church. It’s faith not in ourselves or our own strength, but in the good will and purpose of the God who can and does save us. But Presbyterian writer Anne Lamott has said that “that the opposite of faith is not doubt, but certainty. It looks at the mess honestly and unflinchingly. Yesterday, our Church celebrated the joyous birth of the Savior of the world. And it’s Jesus who does that: He is always busy perfecting the faith we started out with. St. Stephen had the primacy and precedence among the deacons newly elected by the apostles, as St. Chrysostom observes, and being filled with the Holy Ghost, preached and pleaded the cause of Christianity with undaunted courage, confirming his doctrine by … That’s faith, and that’s the kind of faith we’re called to have in a crisis. … God loves the world. Certainty is missing the point entirely. St. Stephen, New Brunswick, Canada... bustling town on the U.S. border with a beautiful coastal setting, easy connections to three major cities & international airports, affordable property and … God loves everybody. I’m not saying we shouldn’t be cautious and test the spirits to see whether they are of God, as scripture says; but to believe that the way you believed in high school or college or ten years ago or yesterday has to be the absolute truth for all eternity is to resist the ongoing work of Jesus to perfect our always imperfect faith. He was a man with the plenitude of strength, and also the plenitude of virtue and grace that acted in him. Faith isn’t even limited to any kind of religious understanding. True, honest faith looks straight at the trouble in our world, and the trouble in our lives. We ask you this in the name of Jesus. In a scene reminiscent of Christ's own appearance before the Sanhedrin (cf. Exciting retreats, fun … Sometimes people don’t like to hear this. St. Stephen, full of trust in the Almighty, met the rebels with his small force and defeated them so completely, that in future none ever dared refuse him obedience. Can you tell me? And stand up and witness our love for Jesus and His ways As citizens of the next century, Guide us to live the Gospel values of . He was, therefore, the Clovis of Hungary, but with this difference: Clovis converted but was far from being a saint, while St. Stephen became a true saint. Stephen established laws favoring Christianity over paganism, and sent an emissary to Rome with a request for the Pope to proclaim him as king. But it’s true. They dwelt in the mess, the emptiness, and discomfort, and they found God was there with them; and so their faith was strengthened and changed and made new by their experience. Saint Stephen's feast day is December 26 in the Western Church (the "feast of Stephen" mentioned in the popular Christmas carol "Good King Wenceslas," and the Second Day of Christmas) and December 27 in the Eastern Church. Catholic education in the Geneva area has a long and storied history of over 100 years. We’re hoping that you will view St. Stephen, its mission, and its ministry, as things that are noble, beautiful, worthy, and good. St Stephen's House, Oxford – a Permanent Private Hall of the University of Oxford and Anglican Theological College. That is a huge comfort, because it means it isn’t up to us to have the faith necessary to handle all the challenges of life. There, in a nutshell, is the Christian faith. They dragged him outside of the walls of Jerusalem (near, tradition says, the Damascus Gate), and stoned him. He is first mentioned in Acts 6:5, when the apostles appoint seven deacons in order to minister to the physical needs of the faithful. Based on actual history, I would highly doubt that, but maybe he was. What is its underlying reality? Faith is a virtue because it makes a positive difference in the world. This is extremely important for us Christians. That’s often how we’ve depicted Pilate in our mythology, as an earnest seeker of truth. Mark 14:56-58), Stephen's opponents produced witnesses who claimed that "we have heard him say, that this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place [the temple], and shall change the traditions which Moses delivered unto us" (Acts 6:14). Is the Date of Easter Related to Passover? And faith is always changing. Paul himself, while recounting his conversion in Acts 22, testifies that he confessed to Christ that "when the blood of Stephen thy witness was shed, I stood by and consented, and kept the garments of them that killed him" (Acts 22:20). What has actor Stephen Graham said about the story behind The Virtues? Belief in early Christianity good time to reflect on the nature of itself! In imitation of Jesus God ’ s Jesus who does that: he is the patron Saint of deacons stonemasons! Were devoted to giving children st stephen virtues Christ centered education we want a that. Today, we stand by as witnesses to the Gospel of Christ the good remark when we ’ depicted... 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