Friday, December 19, 2014

The sight of FAITH

 ...it is fitting for the upright to praise him.  - Psalm 33:1b

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"Words cannot express the perfection of his adoration. If Saint John leaped in the womb at the approach of Mary, what feelings must have coursed through Joseph during those six months when he had at his side and under his very eyes the hidden God!

If the father of Origin used to kiss his child during the night and adore the Holy Spirit living within him, can we doubt that Joseph must often have adored Jesus hidden in the pure tabernacle of Mary? How fervent that adoration must have been: My Lord and my God, behold your servant!

No one can describe the adoration of this noble soul. He saw nothing, yet he believed; his faith had to pierce the virginal veil of Mary. So likewise with you! Under the veil of the Sacred Species your faith must see our Lord.

Ask St. Joseph for his lively, constant faith."

St. Peter Julian Eymard

Thursday, December 18, 2014

His life: an Advent!

"The life of a priest is an Advent
bringing forth 
the Incarnation of souls."- Bl Elizabeth of the Trinity

  

PRAYER FOR HOLY PRIESTS
(St Charles Borromeo)
O Holy Mother of God, 
pray for the priests
your Son has chosen to serve the Church.
Help them, by your intercession,
to be holy, zealous and chaste.
Make them models of virtue
in the service of God’s people.
Help them to be prayerful in meditations,
efficacious in preaching,
and zealous in the daily offering of
the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
Help them administer the sacraments with joy.

Amen 
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Let us generously remember our priests in daily prayer -
especially in this holy Advent season.  
 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

O, the heavenly Rhythm of Liturgy

 

On December 17th, the Church’s Advent liturgy begins to focus in a more particular way on the Nativity of the Lord.  The prayers, readings, preface at Mass, as well as the readings, antiphons for the Gospel canticles, intercessions, and prayers at the Liturgy of the Hours concentrate more resolutely than during the preceding days of Advent on the coming feast of the Nativity of the Lord. Our attention is fixed on the messianic promises proclaimed by the ancient prophets of Israel. 

The seven great “O Antiphons” have a particular role in these days. Each antiphon, always sung in a very similar melody, begins with 'O' and addresses Christ with a unique title from the prophecies of Isaiah and Micah.  Each is followed by a petition for God's people relevant to the title by which He is addressed, and the cry for Jesus to COME to us (veni) and act on our behalf:   

December 17: O Wisdom, O Holy Word of God, you govern all creation with your strong yet tender care. Come and show your people the way to salvation. (Isaiah 11:2-3; Wisdom 8:1; Proverbs 9:1)
December 18: O Sacred Lord of Ancient Israel, who showed yourself to Moses in the burning bush, who gave him the holy law on Sinai mountain: come, stretch out your mighty hand to set us free. (Exodus 3:1-8; 20:1-20; Deuteronomy 26:5-9)
December 19: O Flower of Jesse’s Stem, you have been raised up as a sign for all peoples; kings stand silent in your presence; the nations bow down in worship before you. Come, let nothing keep you from coming to our aid. (Isaiah 11:1-4; 45:23; 52:13; Luke 1:32-33)
December 20: O Key of David, O Royal Power of Israel controlling at your will the gate of heaven: come, break down the prison walls of death for those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death; and lead your captive people into freedom. (Isaiah 22:22; 42:6-7; Luke 4:16-19)
December 21: O Radiant Dawn, splendor of eternal light, sun of justice: come, shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death. (Malachi 3:20; Isaiah 9:1; Psalm 107:14)
December 22: O King of all the nations, the only joy of every human heart; O Keystone of the mighty arch of man, come and save the creature you fashioned from the dust. (Isaiah 28:16; Genesis 2:7; Matthew 21:42; 1 Peter 2:4-5)
December 23: O Emmanuel, King and Lawgiver, Desire of the Nations, Savior of all People, come and set us free, Lord our God. (Isaiah 7:14; Malachi 3:1; Matt 1:21-23)

·                     December 17: O Sapientia (O Wisdom)
·                     December 18: O Adonai (O Lord)
·                     December 19: O Radix Iesse (O Root of Jesse)
·                     December 20: O Clavis David (O Key of David)
·                     December 21: O Oriens (O Daystar) (after this date, days get longer)
·                     December 22: O Rex Gentium (O King of the Nations)
·                     December 23: O Emmanuel (O God-with-Us)

When taken together from the last title to the first,
the first letters of each title form a wonderful Latin acrostic:
This is the Lord’s response
to the Church’s ardent petition that He COME (veni):
Ero cras (I will be there tomorrow)!

 The “O Antiphons” not only bring holy intensity to our Advent
preparation, but bring it to a joyful conclusion.


 


 NOTE:
  Some have used the O Antiphons as the basis of a rich Novena
up to and including Christmas Day.
Perhaps this "last lap" of Advent could also include
daily Mass and/or daily Adoration.


O come, O come, Emmanuel!
 
The song "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel" is simply a reworking of the O Antiphons. When you sing it, you are joining a vast throng of Christians stretching back across centuries and spanning the whole of the earth who prayed as all Christians do, "Come, Lord Jesus!" (Rev 22:20)

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Expectation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
 

More on the 'O Antiphons': http://fisheaters.com/customsadvent10.html

Dearest Holy Father...
78 years old today



You have the pledge of our prayers!


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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

For in us, too, Christ rests ...

“God looked over the world for an empty heart – a heart that was empty like a flute on which He could pipe a tune ... and the emptiest heart He could find was the heart of a lady.  Since there was no self there, He filled it with His Very Self.” - Caryll Houselander, The Reed of God (1944)
 
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"In Advent Christ rested in Mary still, silent, helpless, utterly dependent. The Creator trusted Himself to His creature. ...This was a foreshadowing of what the Incarnation would mean for us; for in us too, Christ rests as He rested in Mary. 

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From the moment when the Christ life is conceived in us, our life is intended for one thing, the expression of His love, His love for God and for the world. ... We must allow the Christ life to grow in us in rest. Our whole being must fold upon Christ's rest in us, as the earth folds upon the seed."

Caryll Houselander, The Passion of the Infant Christ
(London: Sheed and Ward, 1949)

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Christmas Novena begins TODAY!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Never lose a Communion

“There is nothing so great as the Eucharist.  If God had something more precious, He would have given it to us.” – St John Vianney

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“…try to participate every day in the sacrifice of the Mass.  Remember that Mass is both Christmas and Calvary. … Where you have the Blessed Sacrament, there you have the living God, the Savior, as really as when He was living in Galilee and Judea, as really as when He is now in heaven. 

Never lose a Communion by your own fault.  Communion is more than life, more than all the goods of the world, more than the entire universe.  It is God Himself, it is Jesus.  Can you prefer anything else?  If you love Jesus sincerely, can you willfully lose the grace of His coming within you?  Jesus asks you to love Him with all the energy and the simplicity of your heart.”

Ven Charles de Foucauld (+1916)


Still looking for that ‘perfect’ Christmas gift? 
Invite someone to holy Mass!