Mediator: Homily for Memorial of Saint Irenaeus, June 28, 2017

To listen to the entire homily, click here.

Readings for Today

Sometimes it is a good thing to focus on the saints.  Today we celebrate Saint Irenaeus, who in some ways might be a stranger.  He was born in the early second century, and was really the first major saint after the apostles.  He wrote eloquently in refuting Gnosticism, a belief in the value of the spirit over and against the body.  It was a dualistic philosophy that refuted the true integration of the humanity and divinity of Christ among other things.

Perhaps most of all, the gifts and talents given to Saint Irenaeus were well suited for the time.  He had the gift of being a mediator, which enabled him to write against Gnosticism in a way that for the time ended its appeal.  His most well-known quote is “The glory of God is man fully alive”, something that speaks to the goodness of creation.  We are made in God’s image and likeness.  And so if you have trouble accepting yourself as good, you might ask Saint Iranaeus to pray for you.