In this His third Commandment, God has asked we consecrate one day a week for Him, and abstain from servile works. Under the old law, the day set aside was Saturday, in memory of the creation of the world. In the new law, the day set aside is Sunday, in memory of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles on Pentecost Sunday.
The Catholic Church has consistently taught that Sunday belongs to the Lord, and the Lord’s Day should be centered on the Lord and the family. Every Sunday, Christ’s faithful come together in church to hear the Word of God and partake in the Eucharist, calling to mind the Passion and Resurrection and thanking God who “in His great mercy gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Pet. 1:3)
According to Eusebius of Alexandria, a fifth-century ecclesiastical writer, Sunday is the beginning of Creation, Resurrection, and a new week. This three-pronged beginning symbolizes The Holy Trinity. God has granted His people six days to work and one to pray and rest.
In 1891, in his encyclical Rerum Novarum, Pope Leo XIII states, “The rest from labor is not to be understood as mere giving way to idleness; much less must it be an occasion for spending money and for vicious indulgence, as many would have it be; but it should be rest from labor, hallowed by religion. Rest (combined with religious observances) disposes a man to forget for a while the business of his everyday life.”
Over one hundred and twenty-five years later, modern life intrudes on our attempts to keep Holy the Lord’s Day. As Knights, perhaps we should give some thought to rearranging our lives to more completely participate in the spirit of the keeping of this commandment. Could we not make a more concerted effort to put down our phones, take a break from social media and spend quality time with our families and our God?
Much of the content written here is adapted from a Sunday, July 8th, 2018, article from “The Catholic Thing” entitled “Salva Italia: Keeping the Lord”s Day Holy” by Ines A. Murzaku.
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