Brightest and Best: A Companion to the Lesser Feasts and Fasts

Brightest and Best: A Companion to the Lesser Feasts and Fasts

by Sam Portaro, Sam Portaro

Paperback(Revised & Updated ed.)

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In these meditations on the lesser feasts and fasts of the church calendar Sam Portaro asks the question, “What do these saints and commemorations have to say to Christians today?” His answers are often surprising and always thought-provoking, with fresh insights into the lives and teachings of those who have gone before us in the Christian faith. The cycle of the year begins in Advent with St. Andrew and ends in late November with Kamehaneha and Emma of Hawaii. Each reflection looks at the scripture readings for the day and focuses on a distinctive attribute of the saint or feast in the light of contemporary questions of faith, mission, and community. Saints of the distant past such as Columba and Agnes, Cyprian and Augustine, Thomas Becket and Catherine of Siena are included, as well as those closer to our own day—Charles Wesley and Julia Emery, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Evelyn Underhill and Jonathan Daniels. Following the calendar provided in Lesser Feasts and Fasts, meditations on the holy days of the church seasons are also included, such as All Saints and the Epiphany.” Brightest and Best is designed for a variety of Christian education purposes, including adult forums, confirmation classes, seasonal presentations, clergy groups, and groups of students and young adults. It is equally useful for individuals seeking varied and interesting devotional reading. Although based on the church year, each chapter is discrete and readers can focus on any event or person and begin at any season. Since these pieces began as homilies in a college setting, they are useful as a preaching aid and could be the basis of a homily at a midweek service.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781561011483
Publisher: Cowley Publications
Publication date: 01/25/1998
Series: The New Church's Teaching Series
Edition description: Revised & Updated ed.
Pages: 246
Product dimensions: 7.91(w) x 9.22(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

SAM PORTARO is the Episcopal chaplain to the University of Chicago and director of Brent House. He had previously served as a parish priest in North Carolina, and as chaplain to The College of William and Mary in Virginia. Dr. Portaro is the author of Conflict and a Christian Life and co-author of Inquiring and Discerning Hearts: Vocation and Ministry with Young Adults on Campus.

Table of Contents

Saint Andrew (November 30)3
Nicholas Ferrar (December 1)4
Channing Moore Williams (December 2)5
John of Damascus (December 4)6
Clement of Alexandria (December 5)7
Nicholas (December 6)9
Ambrose (December 7)10
Saint Thomas (December 21)11
The Nativity of Our Lord (December 25)13
Saint Stephen (December 26)14
Saint John (December 27)15
The Holy Innocents (December 28)17
Thomas Becket (December 29)18
The Holy Name of Our Lord (January 1)19
The Epiphany of Our Lord (January 6)20
Julia Chester Emery (January 9)22
William Laud (January 10)23
Aelred (January 12)24
Hilary (January 13)26
Antony (January 17)27
Confession of Saint Peter the Apostle (January 18)28
Wulfstan (January 19)29
Fabian (January 20)30
Agnes (January 21)31
Vincent (January 22)32
Phillips Brooks (January 23)33
Conversion of Saint Paul the Apostle (January 25)34
Timothy and Titus (January 26)35
John Chrysostom (January 27)36
Thomas Aquinas (January 28)37
Brigid (Bride) (February 1)38
The Presentation of Our Lord (February 2)40
Anskar (February 3)41
Cornelius the Centurion (February 4)42
The Martyrs of Japan (February 5)43
Absalom Jones (February 13)44
Cyril and Methodius (February 14)45
Thomas Bray (February 15)46
Martin Luther (February 18)47
Polycarp (February 23)49
Saint Matthias (February 24)50
George Herbert (February 27)51
David of Wales (March 1)52
Chad (March 2)53
John and Charles Wesley (March 3)54
Perpetua and her Companions (March 7)55
Gregory of Nyssa (March 9)56
Gregory the Great (March 12)57
Patrick (March 17)58
Cyril of Jerusalem (March 18)59
Saint Joseph (March 19)60
Cuthbert (March 20)61
Thomas Ken (March 21)62
James De Koven (March 22)63
Gregory the Illuminator (March 23)64
The Annunication of Our Lord (March 25)65
Charles Henry Brent (March 27)67
John Keble (March 29)68
John Donne (March 31)69
Frederick Denison Maurice (April 1)70
James Lloyd Breck (April 2)71
Richard of Chichester (April 3)72
Martin Luther King, Jr (April 4)73
William Augustus Muhlenberg (April 8)74
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (April 9)75
William Law (April 10)76
George Augustus Selwyn (April 11)77
Alphege (April 19)78
Anselm (April 21)79
Saint Mark (April 25)80
Catherine of Siena (April 29)81
Saint Philip and Saint James (May 1)82
Athanasius (May 2)83
Monnica (May 4)85
Julian of Norwich (May 8)86
Gregory of Nazianzus (May 9)87
Dunstan (May 19)87
Alcuin (May 20)88
Jackson Kemper (May 24)89
Bede the Venerable (May 25)90
Augustine of Canterbury (May 26)91
Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary (May 31)92
The First Book of Common Prayer93
Justin (June 1)94
The Martyrs of Lyons (June 2)95
The Martyrs of Uganda (June 3)97
Boniface (June 5)98
Columba (June 9)99
Ephrem of Edessa (June 10)100
Saint Barnabas (June 11)101
Enmegahbowh (June 12)102
Basil the Great (June 14)104
Evelyn Underhill (June 15)105
Joseph Butler (June 16)106
Bernard Mizeki (June 18)108
Alban (June 22)109
The Nativity of Saint John the Baptist (June 24)109
Irenaeus (June 28)111
Saint Peter and Saint Paul (June 29)112
Independence Day (July 4)113
Benedict of Nursia (July 11)114
William White (July 17)115
Macrina (July 19)117
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Amelia Bloomer, Sojourner Truth, and Harriet Ross Tubman (July 20)118
Saint Mary Magdalene (July 22)119
Thomas a Kempis (July 24)120
Saint James (July 25)122
Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary (July 26)123
William Reed Huntington (July 27)124
Mary and Martha of Bethany (July 29)126
William Wilberforce (July 30)127
Ignatius of Loyola (July 31)128
Joseph of Arimathaea (August 1)129
The Transfiguration of Our Lord (August 6)131
John Mason Neale (August 7)133
Dominic (August 8)134
Laurence (August 10)135
Clare of Assisi (August 11)136
Florence Nightingale (August 12)138
Jeremy Taylor (August 13)140
Jonathan Myrick Daniels (August 14)141
Saint Mary the Virgin (August 15)143
William Porcher DuBose (August 18)144
Bernard of Clairvaux (August 20)145
Saint Bartholomew (August 24)147
Louis of France (August 25)148
Thomas Gallaudet with Henry Winter Syle (August 27)149
Augustine of Hippo (August 28)151
Aidan (August 31)152
David Pendleton Oakerhater (September 1)154
The Martyrs of New Guinea (September 2)156
Paul Jones (September 4)157
Constance and her Companions (September 9)158
Alexander Crummell (September 10)159
John Henry Hobart (September 12)160
Cyprian (September 13)162
Holy Cross Day (September 14)163
Ninian (September 16)164
Hildegard of Bingen (September 17)165
Edward Bouverie Pusey (September 18)166
Theodore of Tarsus (September 19)168
John Coleridge Patteson (September 20)169
Saint Matthew (September 21)171
Sergius of Moscow (September 25)172
Lancelot Andrewes (September 26)173
Saint Michael and All Angels (September 29)174
Jerome (September 30)175
Remigius (October 1)176
Francis of Assisi (October 4)177
William Tyndale (October 6)178
Robert Grosseteste (October 9)180
Philip (October 12)182
Samuel Isaac Joseph Schereschewsky (October 14)183
Teresa of Avila (October 15)185
Hugh Latimer, Nicholas Ridley, and Thomas Cranmer (October 16)186
Ignatius of Antioch (October 17)187
Saint Luke (October 18)188
Henry Martyn (October 19)190
Saint James of Jerusalem (October 23)191
Alfred the Great (October 26)193
Saint Simon and Saint Jude (October 28)194
James Hannington (October 29)196
All Hallows' Eve (October 31)197
All Saints (November 1)199
All Faithful Departed (November 2)201
Richard Hooker (November 3)202
Willibrord (November 7)204
Leo the Great (November 10)205
Martin (November 11)207
Charles Simeon (November 12)208
Consecration of Samuel Seabury (November 14)209
Margaret of Scotland (November 16)210
Hugh of Lincoln (November 17)211
Hilda of Whitby (November 18)212
Elizabeth of Hungary (November 19)214
Edmund of East Anglia (November 20)215
Clement of Rome (November 23)217
Thanksgiving Day219
James Otis Sargent Huntington (November 25)219
Kamehameha and Emma (November 28)221

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