Tomorrow is Saint Jean Baptiste Day in Quebec or La Fête Nationale (National Holiday) because it is more a secular, pagan outing. It is an orgy of boozing, dancing, revelling in excess ending with a big fireworks display paid for by our taxes.
My post is not to condemn what French Quebecers have reverted this holy day into but to talk about its origins. How it was once dedicated to Saint John the Baptist.
Quebec at one time, made him their patron saint to be venerated and honored with religious dignity and respect however, that was before the 1970’s and the so-called “quiet revolution”.
It was fomented by Quebec’s monied elites, atheists, and communists bent on thwarting the power of the Catholic church that had kept Quebec culture, traditions, and the French language alive since the Battle on the Plains of Abraham near Quebec city.
John was the son of Jewish high priest Zachary and his wife Elizabeth and they were an old couple who despite their best efforts could not have children. They were very religious, pious, and God-fearing couple very adavanced in age when John was born to them.
God sent an angel to Zachary informing him that their fondest wish would happen, Elizabeth would bear a son. Told to name the child John and that he would be uniquely accorded the Spirit (Holy Ghost) and have deceased prophet Elias’s power.
He would be Jesus Christ’s precursor converting many Israelites through his preaching and exemplary life of abstinence from wine or
strong drink. True the word, John wore clothing made from camel’s hair and his daily diet consisted of locusts and wild honey.
Later after John was arrested, imprisoned, and murdered on King Herod’s orders to fulfill the desires of an adulteress who used her daughter to find favor from an intoxicated, lively Herod. He foolishly kept a promise to her because she pleased him with her fancy dancing during a Roman type party. Fearing loss of face amongst his guests for not carrying out his promise he allowed this horrific, gruesome murder to happen.
Christ would later comment about his cousin’s death and His own mission to save humanity by mentioning this with these words to His sceptics and naysayers most of whom were His sworn enemies, the Pharisees and Sadducees. These guys were the elites in Jewish society who loved being the ‘beautiful people’ that everybody was to adore and talk about. They wanted the “little people” ie regular, average people to be jealous of them regarding how religious they appeared to be.
“But what went you out to see? A prophet? Yea, I say to you, and more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written: Behold, I send my angel before thy face, who shall prepare thy way before thee. For I say to you: Amongst those that are born of women, there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist” (Luke 7:24-28).
And continuing, Jesus pointed out the inconsistency of the world in its opinions both of himself and his precursor: “John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine; and you say: He hath a devil. The Son of man is coming eating and drinking: and you say: Behold a man that is a glutton and a drinker of wine, a friend of publicans and sinners. And wisdom is justified by all her children” (Luke 7:33-35)
The picture is of a bronze plaque depicting Saint John the Baptist taken from internet.org and is in the public domain.