Sandwiched between the feasts of St. Patrick and St. Joseph, today’s patron, St. Cyril of Jerusalem, can easily be forgotten. But his patronage is needed especially today.
Saint Cyril, Archbishop of Jerusalem, was born in Jerusalem in the year 315 and was raised in strict Christian piety. Upon reaching the age of maturity, he became a monk, and in the year 346 he became a presbyter. In the year 350, upon the death of Archbishop Maximus, he succeeded him on the episcopal throne of Jerusalem…
St Cyril’s works include twenty-three Instructions (Eighteen are Catechetical, intended for those preparing for Baptism, and five are for the newly-baptized) and two discourses on Gospel themes: “On the Paralytic,” and “Concerning the Transformation of Water into Wine at Cana.”
At the heart of the Catechetical Instructions is a detailed explanation of the Symbol of Faith. The saint suggests that a Christian should inscribe the Symbol of Faith upon “the tablets of the heart.”
“The articles of the Faith,” St Cyril teaches, “were not written through human cleverness, but they contain everything that is most important in all the Scriptures, in a single teaching of faith. Just as the mustard seed contains all its plethora of branches within its small kernel, so also does the Faith in its several declarations combine all the pious teachings of the Old and the New Testaments.” (Source)
In an today’s age of poor catechesis, St. Cyril of Jerusalem is a much-needed patron. He powerfully used the Scriptures to explain the truths of our Faith to those preparing for Baptism and the newly-baptized. Can you imagine having him as your RCIA instructor?
St. Cyril of Jerusalem, pray for us!