A daily study of the Network’s diverse faiths
Death of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). On 28 Ṣafar, the second month of the lunar based Islamic calendar which means empty as in the pre-Islamic Arabian era people’s houses were empty as they were out gathering food, the demise of The Prophet is commemorated. He fell deathly ill after ensuring His global and enduring legacy by establishing one of the world’s great religions, Islam, and died on 8 June 632 CE, the cause of His death not being recorded, but generally assumed to have been due to a fever. The Prophet was buried where he died in the house of Aisha (ʿAʾishah bint Abi Bakr, عائشة بنت أبي بكر) in Medina. She was His 620 third and youngest wife and the Mother of the Believers (أمّ المؤمنين,) in the Qur’an. Her father, Abu Bakr, became the first Caliph to succeed Muhammad (pbuh). 28 Ṣafar is a public holiday in Iran and also commemorates another important event for Shi’a Muslims, the 670 CE Martyrdom of Imam Hassan (Imam Hasan al-Mujtaba, الإمام الحسن المجتبى), the grandson of The Prophet and the second Shi’a imam. Hassan was the elder son of Fatimah bint Muhammad (فَاطِمَة ٱبْنَت مُحَمَّد, Fatimah al-Zahra), the youngest daughter of Muhammad (pbuh) and Khadija bint Khuwaylid (خَدِيجَة بِنْت خُوَيْلِد), and Fatimah’s husband Ali, the fourth of the rightly guided caliphs and the first Shi’a imam. It is believed that Hassan was poisoned by his wife in Medina on the orders of the Caliph Muawiya who wanted to ensure the succession of his son. The shrine containing Hassan’s tomb was destroyed in 1925 during the second Wahhabi conquest of Medina as part of a general destruction of memorials in cemeteries. Pitru Paksha (पितृ पक्ष, fortnight of the ancestors, Solah Shraddha, sixteen shraddhas) ends after the sixteen-day ritual from 20 September when Hindus pay homage to their Pitrs (ancestors) and Navratri begins on 7 October. Image: youtube.com.
Heiliger Bruno von Köln (St Bruno of Cologne) (1030-1101). Feast Day commemorating the death of the Cologne priest, confessor, hermit, monk, mystic and founder of the Carthusian Order who personally founded the Order’s first two communities. Called to Reims, he found himself head of the Episcopal School, which at the time included the direction of the schools and the oversight of all the educational establishments of the diocese, and for 18 years he maintained the prestige that the School of Reims had attained. Bruno acquired an excellent reputation as a philosopher and theologian and among his students were Eudes of Châtillon, afterwards Pope Urban II, and a large number of prelates and abbots. Although he wanted to live in solitude and prayer, he was made Chancellor of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Reims, involving him in the daily administration of the diocese. He became a close advisor of his pupil, Pope Urban II. Bruno died on 6 October 1101 in Serra San Bruno (La Serra), Calabria. Venerated in Roman Catholic Church. Patron of Germany, Calabria, Carthusians, monastic fraternities, trademarks, Ruthenia, possessed people. Image: youtube.com.
Prayer Father, You called Saint Bruno to serve You in solitude. In answer to his prayers, help us to remain faithful to You amid the recent changes of this world. We ask this through Our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen
William Tyndale (c1494-1536). Lutheran Commemoration of the death of the English scholar born near Dursley, Gloucestershire. He was a leading figure in the Protestant Reformation and is well-known as a translator of the Bible into English, influenced by the works of Erasmus of Rotterdam and Martin Luther. A number of partial English translations had been made from the Seventh Century on, but the religious ferment caused by John Wycliffe’s Bible in the late Fourteenth Century led to the death penalty for anyone found in unlicensed possession of Scripture in English, although translations were available in all other major European languages. Tyndale’s translation was the first English Bible to draw directly from Hebrew and Greek texts, the first English translation to take advantage of the printing press, the first of the new English Bibles of the Reformation and the first English translation to use Jehovah as God’s name, as preferred by English Protestant Reformers. A copy of Tyndale’s 1528 The Obedience of a Christian Man, which argued that the king of a country should be the head of that country’s church rather than the Pope, was found by King Henry VIII and provided a rationale for breaking the Church in England away from the Catholic Church in 1534. However, after opposing Henry’s annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon, Tyndale fled England for the Flemish territory of the Catholic Holy Roman Emperor but was arrested by the Roman Catholic authorities in Antwerp in 1535 and jailed for over a year in Vilvoorde (Filford) Castle, now just north of Brussels Airport in Flemish Brabant. Tyndale was convicted of heresy and executed by strangulation on 6 October 1536 near Vilvoorde, the body of the martyr being burnt at the stake. His dying prayer was that Henry’s eyes would be opened and a year later Henry authorised the Matthew Bible, largely Tyndale’s work. In 1611, scholars produced the King James Bible, which drew on much of Tyndale’s original work. Tyndale was placed twenty-sixth in the BBC’s 2002 poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. Image: christianitytoday.com.