Saturday, December 8, 2018

The Lord has done marvelous deeds...

Sing to the Lord a new song,
for He has done marvelous deeds.  - Psalm 98:1

God chose Mary the Immaculate to be "a model of holiness" ... At Mary's conception, a new way of being human happens, and we are "chosen, destined" to share it.  Adam and Eve were tricked by the serpent's "conception." The yes of Mary at the Annunciation, the culmination of the Immaculate Conception, undoes the disobedience of Eden and makes paradise a possibility once again for us. - From Magnificat, Vol 20, No 10, Dec 2018.

Lift your heart in joy and exalt Him                   Laud the glorious Conception
In the Blessed Sacrament all Holy, supernal     Of the Queen in God's Kingdom

Where the Lord, His glory veiling,                    Who remaining Virgin stainless,
Comforts souls true and lowly.                          Bore for men the Word eternal.

Alabado, sung after Benediction

The Immaculate Conception (detail): Sassoferrato

Excerpt: Homily, St Patrick's Cathedral -
8 Dec 1996 - John Cardinal O'Connor...

"Today is the date of the Immaculate Conception, the eighth of December...Mary was made immaculate, conceived without any trace of sin because she was going to be the co-creator of the humanity of Christ.  She was going to be, as God the Father was the Creator, the re-creator of the human race with Christ.  She was going to be the tabernacle in which Christ would be conceived. 

    We cannot now, of course, be conceived without original sin.  But the more we can purify ourselves through the Sacrament of Penance, through our own penances, through trying to observe the Commandments and keeping close to Christ, then the more fitting we become as tabernacles of the Eucharist.

    All of this requires an effort, perhaps for some an unaccustomed effort. St Augustine tells us the reward.  He was still in process of conversion from a highly profligate, promiscuous life.  Then he went into a Catholic community to worship in the Eucharistic sacrifice.  He said to a Catholic friend:
    "How I wept, deeply moved by your hymns, songs, and the voices that echoed through your Church!  What emotion I experienced in them!  Those sounds flowed through my ears, distilling the Truth in my heart.  A feeling of devotion surged within me and the tears streamed down my face - tears that did me good."

    May that be our experience in this Holy Sacrifice of the Mass."

Glorious things are spoken of you, O Mary,
for from you arose the sun of justice, Christ our God.
(Communion Antiphon - today's liturgy)

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"To the maternal intercession of Mary, the Virgin of expectation, 
 let us entrust our path toward the Lord, while we continue
our Advent itinerary of making our heart and our life ready 
for the coming of Emmanuel, God-with-us."
Benedict XVI, 12/05/11, Noon Angelus

 O chosen and fairest Virgin Mary, intercede for us!

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