345-420. Doctor of Biblical Science, Feast Sept 30th.
have trouble controlling your temper at times, being patient and
staying calm interacting with others, then you are normal. Nearly
everyone blows-up now and then. Grace and virtue can harness and
tame you to some degree but unless you live in isolation you will
most likely lose your cool occasionally. Our habits become
ingrained in us. That's the most important reason why we should
cultivate good habits, especially mental habits. Our thinking needs
guidance because thoughts beget habits. Jerome can enlighten you.
Implore him for assistance.
Perhaps because of his wide
exposures to many people and travels, he developed a pugnacious and
cantankerous disposition at times. His keen intellect could be
contentious when his vision of truth differed from others. Jerome
was a passionate lover of biblical, written expression. His
ill-nature, that all creatures possess due to original sin, was
forever attacking, challenging and defending his pursuit of
Those involved in research, biblical
studies, languages or translations of God's holy word have a sure
friend and guide in Jerome. He had a razor-sharp mind and his pen
expressed everything precisely.
St Jerome is the second of
the Western Roman World Church Doctors. He was held in esteem by
friends and foe alike and deemed the most learned priest of his
time. His bones lie at rest in the basilica of St Mary Major in
Rome. His contributions to civilization and the church, through his
major translation of the bible, are extraordinary.
considered an "indispensable witness" in dealing with the words of
God. A firebrand genius could only write the words below. Listen to
one of his homilies:
"Simon's mother-in-law was keeping her bed,
sick with a fever. O may Jesus come to our house and enter in and by
His command cure the fever of our sins. Each one of us is sick with
a fever. Whenever I give way to anger, I have a fever. There are as
many fevers as there are faults and vices. Let us beg the apostles
to intercede with Jesus that he may come to us and touch our hand.
For if he does this, at once the fever is gone. He does not touch
the ear or any other part of the body; He touches only the hand. The
cause of sickness and fever is the lack of good works. It follows
that when the deeds are made right, the fever is lifted."
our saint begs us to implore the apostles (or any member of the
heavenly court) for help with our vices, so we might consider asking
Jerome for spiritual help. God has created us to help and support
each other. That includes the living and the dead. All are God's children. Jerome was restless in his youth and in search of
learning at any cost. He became secretary to Pope Damasus and began
to make a name for himself in church affairs. At this time, he
became spiritual director for a group of wealthy women, among them,
Paula and Marcella. Despite Jerome's conventional anti-feminine
rhetoric, he never disliked or ignored women. He spent a good deal
of time with them. Obviously, his intense love for Jesus had to find
in his heart and mind, to think often about Jesus' mother, Mary.
Edward Seller's article, entitled "An Inclination of the
Heart: Jerome and His Female Friendships", listed in the Quarterly Periodical: Spiritual Life Fall issue of 2001, by Carmelites, OCD,
listed in the sources, contains remarkable
insights and sensitivities into Jerome's real attitude and thoughts
toward women. Speaking about Eustochium, one of Paula's daughters,
he says: "It is hard for the human soul not to love, and it is
necessary that our mind be drawn into some sort of affection. Love
of the flesh is overcome by love of the spirit. Desire is quenched
Jerome's opinion differed from St Ambrose and
others regarding the theme of Mary's virginity during her Son's
birth. Father Gambero (listed in the sources) clearly states that
"not withstanding his problematic opinion of the Virgin Birth,
Jerome speaks of Mary as a perpetual virgin; a virgin before and
after the birth of Jesus who never had marital relations with her
In fact, Jerome argued not only for Mary's
perpetual virginity but for Joseph's as well. Other doctors went so
far as to firmly adhere to the theory that Joseph was sanctified in
his mother's womb, as John the Baptist, owing to his unquestionable
higher dignity and sublime calling as the husband of Mary. The
evangelists seldom mention Joseph. St Matthew could pay him no
higher or greater honor than by stating that he was the spouse of
Mary. Mary's husband, in Jerome's view, was never an old man, as
some stories depict him.
Reading The Life of St Joseph as
manifested by Our Lord Jesus Christ to Marie Cecilia Baij, O.S.B.,
Abbess of a Benedictine Convent, will allow one to discover why St
Joseph was selected to be the Patron of the Universal Church. There
are others inspiring books, and quotes from other authors, on St Joseph listed below, under St Teresa of Avila, on
St. Teresa of Avila 10/15
No other human being, except his wife, was more
virtuous or underwent more duress and attacks by the Prince of
Darkness than St Joseph. No one defeated him more continuously or
was challenged more than Joseph. No one was more worthy for Mary
than the illustrious St Joseph. The uninterrupted battles that Satan
waged on Joseph to test his virtue and holiness will amaze you. As St Jerome was
the main guardian of the holy word of God, so was Joseph the main
guardian and protector of Mary, the holy Mother of God and the
living Word-God Himself, Jesus the Christ.
of the political turmoil in Rome around 384, Jerome abruptly turned
away. He went to Palestine. There he settled in Bethlehem where he
founded a double monastery for men and women. He also started a
school for boys. During this period, he began his long awaited
mission on the monumental work of translating the Hebrew Scriptures
into Latin. That was the common (vulgar) language of the Roman
world at that time. Hence the name of his translation is called the
Our saint was above all a scripture scholar. He
translated the Old Testament from the Hebrew into Latin. He was an
avid student, a brilliant scholar and a prodigious letter writer as
well as a consultant to monks, bishops and the pope. No man before
Jerome was among his contemporaries and very few men afterwards were
so well qualified to do the work that he did. The Council of Trent
(One of the twenty-one Ecumenical Councils) declared his translation
the authentic text and to be used by all the churches. He was a
master of Latin, Greek, Hebrew and Chaldaic. He spent five years in
the desert of Chalcis so that he might give himself to prayer,
penance and study. He was an outspoken person and a fearless critic.
Jerome did not let anger remain unchecked or control him.
Uncontrolled anger can lead to sin but using it for the glory of God
is praiseworthy. When Jesus used his anger to make a cord from ropes
and lashed it about overturning the money-tables in the temple and
driving out the moneychangers, he declared "Do not make God's house
a den of thieves." There is a fine difference between being in
control and controlling the situation at hand. It may sound that
being in control and controlling the situation is the same but they
are not. Passions blind us and diminish our spiritual perspectives
if they are self-oriented. If they are directed to the honor and
glory of God and support God's creatures and creations, our
spiritual perspectives are enhanced.
Naturally, Jesus aroused
the ire of the temple rulers and they became indignant at him due to
his, visible, blazing, anger. But Jesus remained cool and collected.
He was at all times under control not necessarily in control. God
was controlling the situation and Jesus was submitting to God. When
they asked him under whose authority he was acting, Jesus informed
them. He stated, referring to his body as a temple, "Destroy this
temple and in three days I will raise it up." This was blasphemy to
them because of their misinterpretation into the meaning of Jesus'
words. From that day onward, they sought to do away with Jesus
because they felt he was a raving maniac and doing things that even
their honored forefathers could not achieve.
We mustn't think
that Jesus' life was in danger or threatened only toward the end of
his three year ministry. From the very beginning of his public
ministry, Jesus was on the run and menacingly pursued to kill him.
All the people in the synagogue of his hometown in Nazareth
attempted to kill him the first time he read from the book of
Isaiah. The word of God, that Jerome translated, is so explosively
written or expressed by Jesus that it will penetrate you marvelously
toward God, or, depending on the individual, allow one to be drawn away from God. Everything depends whether
one possesses the Spirit of the Lord or not. People thought Jerome
was a raving maniac too, as Jesus, but no one was ever hated so intensely, or
continually, from the very first moment in the public eye, as our
Lord. To hate maliciously is hell and those there are imbued with malevolence , ill will , spite , malignity , spleen , grudge. Where the Spirit is, there is love and the most
marvelous blessing of love is that where there is no love on earth, put love, and you will surely discover it.
No book has every been more banned, been so
controversial or feared as the "book of books," the Holy Bible. God
is its unmistakable author. That is why the Catholic Church has
safeguarded its authenticity and translations so jealously and
When we say that God is the author, we mean the holy scripture is inspired by God. It was God who breathed into those some 40 authors, be it Isaiah in the O.T. or Peter in the N.T. It is said in scripture that God holds in his hands the soul of every living thing and the life breath of all humankind. God breathes in us and with his spirit. Christians believe that inspiration abounds and is filled in holy scriptures through those designated authors that God chose.
Many centuries ago you could not own a copy of the bible because it was so rare and precious. People use to walk miles to find the bible chained in some distant church. With the advent of the printing press, that changed. As early as 1926, a Latin Bible sold in New York for over $100,000, which at that time, was the highest price ever paid for a single book. This information I read from a pamphlet by Jerold C. Potter entitled Books of the Bible , published by Barbour and Company, Inc. Uhrichsville, OH.44683. The author's address is PO Box 2732, Los Angeles, CA. 90051.
Thanks to St Jerome and others the church has
guarded the inspired word of God and the authentic words of Christ.
The stories in the gospels enrich our faith each and every time we
explore them with the help of the Holy Spirit.
channeling all of one's energies, intensity and feelings under the
influence of the Holy Spirit allows the spirit of love to check
wrath with warmth and gentleness. When love is present in one's
intentions, there is never any intent of malice, disrespect or
unkindness toward any of God's creatures, even the most loathsome.
Love is God's energy exploding everywhere. It is God's beauty and
intelligence revealing itself uninterruptedly and invitingly for the
good of all life and creation. God's love is like amazing movements
and tender, mothering touches within and without all creatures' soul
and creation. It is more than the ebb and tide of all physical
waters of the earth. It is the spiritual waters that Jesus promised
to all. He especially explained his insatiable spiritual and
physical thirst to the Samaritan woman at the well in the gospel of
Thanks to St Jerome and his translations of
scripture, we can appreciate the authentic, inspired words that God
wants us to hear and know. The word of God is a living word; it is
effective; it penetrates into one's whole being; it unites; it binds
our heart, mind and soul to the living God. It is able to renew and
reinvigorate us with God's life and Holy Spirit.
tone of your own conversations with people. They have ranged from
critical to cordial. How could the conversation between Jesus and
(Photinia?), the Samaritan at the well, begin so sweet and turn to
criticalness? This one conversation with Jesus not only changed
Photinia's whole life. It instantly caused her to want to follow
this Jewish stranger. The fact that she was previously married five
times is insignificant. Oh! How delightful and transforming it must
be to be able to enter into conversation with Jesus Christ. One
conversation can produced such tremendous attraction and excitement
to immediately follow him.
What can sustained conversations
with Jesus produce? Why do we not ask God to help us engage into
more prayer time? After all, is not genuine prayer considered
spiritual conversation with God? Jesus' kindness and consideration
apparently opened up exciting vistas and promises for Photinia. What
could it not do for us?
Jerome, like Jesus, was an
impassionate and dedicated person and was unafraid to unleash his
feelings when it dishonored God. He was an intense man of God as
Jesus. Fury, passion and intensity are a few words that
characterize Jerome's personality traits.
Jesus never wielded
the pen as far as we currently know. He wrote on the ground once to
defend a woman caught in adultery. He would leave writing to Paul,
Jerome and others. Jerome could use his pen as poison. Anyone who
taught error was to Jerome an enemy of truth and God. And he would
go after them with his trained and talented writing
St Jerome was swift to anger but also swift to feel
remorse. He was more severe about his own shortcomings than other's
failures. When Jerome was in the desert, he pushed himself mightily.
He felt his passion most strongly and attempted taming his flesh by
ruthless determination to surrender to Jesus. Often he wept over his
past sins, human errors and failures. "He claimed that he was not
ashamed to disclose his past temptations". He grieved over what he
had formerly been and was relieved that virtue had changed him.
Jerome had all the usual moral problems of humanity. He was no
admirer of moderation and made contentious remarks including
indefensible comments regarding marriage and women.
needs the physical and spiritual passions, impulses, cares and
concerns of men and women everywhere. Some of us need to be creative
in the propagation of the human race. Some need to have expressions
of intimacy. All of us need to serve others. This will result in a
very deep spiritual sustainment and knowledge about the existence of
God operating in our own life. Anyone can also recognize God within
themselves for God is a jealous Lover for each of our thoughts. Did not
the Church's Doctor of Mystical Theology write that one thought of man is of more value
than the whole world? And because of that, every thought not given to God, (through the
dedication of one's life) robs God of his due, and we are robbers.
St. John of the Cross 12/14
Our impassionate nature sometimes acts as a run-away
train hurling down the tracks separated from its engine. We loose
control, leadership, and guidance of our actions easily when we do
not have strong linkage with our feelings, thoughts and moods. Many
times we take substances that alter or put these operations out of
kilter. We sometimes become unnerved or unglued when someone crosses
us, irritates us or says something unexpected or nasty. The passions
we use to be creative, resourceful and constructive are also used or
employed to be destructive, furious and hateful when we "loose it".
Our passions without grace can degrade us, deprave us, enslave us and yes, kill us.
Our passions with grace can send us into ecstasy, lead us into uninterrupted conversaton and dialog with Jesus, and inspire us to be
creative, original, and inventive with our words, works, writings and our living in many dimensions.
The greater our gifts from God the greater our need for
God's graces to check the fury and the fire of our words and deeds.
Our passions can be pleasing fragrances to God or act as a lethal
poison to wound, injure or destroy. Our passions can be spiritual or
physical or both at the same time. They can be mentally, emotionally
and psychologically pleasing to God and creation; they can also be
acts of terror, violence, mayhem or deadly forces.
it is fitting that St Jerome whose personality could be so abrasive
would be designated by God to translate the bible. God's book
contains some of the most violent and bloody scenes ever recorded.
It is God's masterpiece containing all the virtue and vices, the
passions and impassionate expressions of the divine and the human
Jerome began his studies in what was formerly called
Yugoslavia and later studied in Turkey. After his primary education
he went to Rome, the center of learning at that time. Next, he went
to Germany where many scholars gathered. He spent several years in
each place trying always to find the very best teacher. Then he went
to Palestine, where Jesus lived. He made an outpouring of devotion
remembering each spot wherever Christ lived. He died in a cave in
Bethlehem believed to be where Christ was born.
translation of the bible written in Latin was to be his noble
achievement. For thirty years he wrote exclusively about holy
scripture and preserved in Latin the works of many learned men. St
Jerome is the patron of many: librarians, translators, biblical
scholars, researchers, writers, critics, lawyers and speakers and
all who use their pen in the service of making Jesus Christ known
He was a man of science who realized his main
mission was to become holy. He used his holiness to translate the
bible. He was a lawyer and an outspoken critic. He was widely
traveled at that time.
It is not unreasonable to assume that
he did remove a thorn from a lion's paw and the lion remained with
him ever after. Those who scoff at such a possibility know little of
the power of God or prayer. God works such abundant miracles for his
loved ones that it is impossible to enumerate them and the ones that
seemed farfetched become most credible with the enlightenment of his
Spirit. If Jesus walked on water, fasted for forty days, raised
Lazarus from the dead and promised us the same power, then it is
quite easy to believe the lion incident in the story of St.
The bible is translated the book of books and the
catholic church has always insisted on guarding the translations as
the highest priority. For that reason, St Jerome is the Doctor of
Biblical Science because of his painstaking care, solicitude,
sensitivity and purity of intention coupled with his tremendous
erudition, scholarship and mastery of languages in expressing the
meaning and accuracy of God's word. Listen to St Jerome, the fiery
and furious, lover of God's word: "Love the Holy Scripture, and
wisdom will love you. Love wisdom, and she will keep you safe."
God's words are God's wisdom. God's love is God's words. God's
wisdom is his loving words.
Jerome insisted that ignorance of
scripture is ignorance of Christ. Since the invention of the
printing press, bibles are abundant. There are many approved version
and translations of the bible endorsed by the catholic church. The
canon or agreed upon official books vary with
The catholic church's canon includes 46 books
from the Old Testament (OT) and 27 from the New Testament (NT). I believe
the books of Tobit, Judith, Maccabees 1&2, Wisdom, Sirah and
Baruch are not included in some mainline Protestant's approved list.
The bible offers an extraordinary power of inspiration. Jesus was
forever mentioning personages in the Old Testament OT and one
could sense that he cherished and knew the bible intimately. He used
it for edification and modeling constantly, especially in explaining
to the religious leaders who were knowledgable in the scriptures.
One holy exercise for prayer, meditation or reflections is
to think on each of the books and express a thought about it. For
example: Ruth: He is your kinsman and your lover; Song of Song
(Solomon): He is your lover and the Rose of Sharon; Hosea: He is
your faithful lover beckoning you to return even if you had previously abandoned Him.
The old and new testaments complement each other. Two of my favorites OT books are
Habakkuk, whose theme is: God is "The Holy One"; and Nahum: whose theme is we have a "Jealous God". Two
NT examples that I love are: Luke: He is the Son of Man, feeling what
we feel and Galatians: He is your liberty; He sets you
The meanings in the bible can be misinterpreted. Also
the languages of the bible differ too. Imagine, the bible today is translated into 182 languages. Reading the Old or New
Testaments without a wise person or guide can allow one to be misled
or misguided because the bible contains contradictions and
Many religions, groups and organizations have
contributed immensely to spreading the message of Jesus in the
bible. One notable example from my experiences is the Gideon
Society. Gideon is in the book of Judges and is a beautiful story.
He was hand-picked by God to be God's leader. Gideon feared this
assignment but God assured him that the Almighty would lead God's
people through him.
The Gideon Society disperses biblical
literature worldwide. There are not too many public hotels in the
entire world that does not have the Gideon Bible in every room. This
dedicated group has passed out free literature for years in the hope
of letting others know of the tremendous importance of God's holy
word. The stories, lessons, psalms, parables, proverbs and wisdom
contained in the bible are inexhaustible, refreshing and exciting.
Recently, (2007) I read that there were discussions to change this plan, but I do not know if it was an attack against the Gideon Society or some type of detailed support.
The church has placed tremendous importance on studying,
reading and living out the authentic meaning and message of the
bible. Petition St Jerome to enlighten and lead you. He is the
Master-Doctor, par excellence, when it comes to translating the holy
word of God and the sacred utterances of Jesus. Because of the genius
and knowledge of sacred scripture that Jerome possessed, the church
has entrusted the words of God to this holy and wise man to put them
in the best light and accuracy possible. Pray to St Jerome that the
best meaning that God intended for his words will be made known and
loved. Read other books by inspired writers and you will discover
the goodness, charity and kindness in scripture and other devotional
Jerome made a tremendous contribution and influence to
the development of Marian tradition within the Western Christianity.
He affirms Mary's perpetual virginity. Her virginity is firmly based
on scripture. Those who are ignorant of scripture are ignorant of
the Mother of God. He vehemently challenged anyone to deny this
obvious fact. He uses most of the prophets, the Psalms and the Song
of Songs to praise Mary bountifully. The value, reverence and
respect for the word of God and its translation possessed Jerome.
This was his life-long pursuit, joy and calling. He found God's
glory in all of its expression and he expressed it with his whole
heart and mind.
In spite of his shortcomings, which are often
depicted as his contrariousness and sarcasm toward others, the
catholic church holds Jerome in the highest esteem. This fact alone
inspires thousands, whose personality and lifestyles are
similar, to have recourse to this holy man.
He focused on
his main mission and battled mightily his weak tendencies that
plagued him throughout his life. For over fifteen century St Jerome
the curmudgeon and scholar has illuminated the life of Christ as the
living Word of God through his translations. That is his significant
contribution to all humankind and civilization forever.
below links relate to the bible or St Jerome:
Jerome, Father and Doctor:http://newadvent.ort/fathers/
scripture website and commentary:
defending the Catholic Church and much more:
Jerome's letter to Eustochium:
Writings of the Early Church Fathers including Jerome and four
other post Nicene Doctors of the Church:
Link to the Catholic Bible containing all of the new and old testament books. Click on Bible after you click on the below link:
"Saint Jerome: Biography and Online Writings"-a ministry of Dr Marcellino D'Ambrosio>
One personal perspective of seeing Christ in the 73 books of the bible.
Please exchange He to She, God, Lord, Jesus or whatever you feel comfortable using as you pray.
1 Genesis He is your Creator God
2 Exodus He is your Redeemer
3 Leviticus He is your Sanctifer
4 Numbers He is your Guide
5 Deuteronomy He is your Teacher
6 Joshua He is your Conqueror
7 Judges He gives you victory
8 Ruth He is your Kinsman
9 I Samuel He is the root of Jesse
10 2 Samuel He is the Son of David
11 1 Kings He is the King of Kings
12 2 Kings He is the Lord of Lords
13 1 Chronicles He is your Intercessor
14 2 Chronicles He is your High Priest
15 Ezra He is your temple
16 Nehemiah He is your mighty wall
17 Tobit He is your Healer
18 Judith He is your Just One
19 Esther He is your Deliverer
20 1 Maccabees He will raise you from the dead
21 2 Maccabees He is your Resurrection
22 Job He is your
23 Psalms He is your song
24 Proverbs He is your wisdom
25 Ecclesiastics He is your purpose
26 Song of Songs He is your Lover
27 Wisdom He is the God of Mercy
28 Sirach He is your Hero
29 Isaiah He is the Prince of Peace
30 Jeremiah He is the soothing Salve for your sin-sick soul
31 Lamentations He is the ever faithful One
32 Baruch He is your repentance
33 Ezekiel He assures you that dry, dead bones will come alive again
34 Daniel He is the Ancient of Days
35 Hosea He is your faithful Lover even when you have abandoned Him
36 Joel He will pour out the Spirit upon all humankind
37 Amos He is your Husbandman
38 Obadiah He is the Lord of the Kingdom
39 Jonah He will bring you back within His Will
40 Micah He wants you to love goodness and to walk humbly with your God
41 Nahum He is your jealous God
42 Habakkuk He is your Holy God
43 Zephaniah He is your Witness
44 Haggai He will overthrow your enemies
45 Zechariah He is the Lord of Hosts
46 Malachi He is your Messenger God
1 Matthew He is the King of the Jews
2 Mark He is your Servant
3 Luke He is the Son of Man
4 John He is The Son of God
5 Acts He is the Savior of the World
6 Romans He is the Rightousness of God
7 1 Corinthians He is the Rock that followed Israel
8 2 Corinthians He is the Triumphant One
9 Galatians He is your Liberator
10 Ephesians He is the Head of the Church
11 Philippians He is your joy
12 Colossians He is your completeness
13 1 Thessalonians He is your hope
14 2 Thessalonians He is your patience
15 1 Timothy He is your faith
16 2 Timothy He is your stability
17 Titus He is the Truth
18 Philemon He is your Benefactor
19 Hebrews He is your perfection
20 James He is the power behind your faith
21 1 Peter He is your example
22 2 Peter He is your purity
23 1 John He is your life
24 2 John He is your pattern
25 3 John He is your Motivator
26 Jude He is the foundation of your faith
27 Revelation He is your coming King.
ANYONE WHO READS ST PAUL WILL UNDERSTAND THAT HE WAS RAISED UP TO A VERY HIGH LEVEL OF KNOWLEDGE AND LOVE OF GOD. HIS WRITINGS IN THE NEW TESTAMENT IN ROMANS REVEAL THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD.
IN CORINTHIANS 1 AND 2, PAUL EXPLAINS THAT JESUS IS THE ROCK THAT FOLLOWED ISRAEL AND THE TRIUMPHANT ONE WHO GIVES VICTORY.
PAUL KNEW THROUGH HIS EXPERIENCE THAT CHRIST IS THE LIBERTY THAT WILL SET ONE FREE WHICH HE DESCRIBED IN GALATIANS.
IN EPHESISAN, PAUL ELABORATES HOW CHRIST IS THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH AND A MARVELOUS EXAMPLE OF THE MYSTICAL BODY.
THROUGH THE EPISTLES OF PHILIPPIANS AND COLOSSIANS, HE TELLS US THAT JESUS IS OUR TRUE JOY AND COMPLETENESS.
IN THESSALONIANS, THE MESSIAH IS OUR ULTIMATE HOPE AND PATIENCE AND DISCIPLINE FOR SURVIVAL.
ONE OF HIS RECRUITES, YOUNG ST TIMOTHY, AND THROUGH THOSE TWO BOOKS NAMED AFTER HIM, PAUL ASSURES US OF THE IMPORTANCE OF OUR FAITH IN JESUS AND ITS STABILITY.
BY MEANS OF THE LAST THREE EPISTLES IN TITUS, PHILEMON AND HEBREWS, PAUL HIGHLIGHTS THAT CHRIST IS THE TRUTH, OUR BENEFACTOR AND HE IS OUR PERFECTION.