Posted in ADVENT, ADVENT PRAYERS, BREVIARY Prayers, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The INCARNATION, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 19 December – “You will be speechless….” Origen

Thought for the Day – 19 December – “You will be speechless….” Origen

“But now you will be speechless and unable to talk
until the day these things take place,
because you did not believe my words,
which will be fulfilled at their proper time.”
Luke 1:20

“You will be speechless… until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words”.   Voice and word are not the same thing where we are concerned, since a voice can be heard without it conveying any meaning, without words and the word can likewise be communicated to our minds without a voice, as in the wandering of our thoughts.    In the same way, since the Saviour is Word…, John differs from Him in being voice, by comparison with Christ, who is Word.   This is what John himself answered to those who asked him who he was: “I am the voice of one crying out in the desert, ‘Prepare the way of the Lord; make straight his paths’” (Lk 3:4; Jn 1:23).

Perhaps this is the reason – because he doubted the birth of the voice that would reveal the Word of God – why Zachariah lost his voice but recovered it again when that voice was born who is the Word’s forerunner (Lk 1:64).   Since, for the mind to be able to grasp the word intended by the voice, we must hear the voice.   It is also why, according to the time of his birth, John is slightly older than Christ – for we perceive the voice before the word.   Thus John points to Christ since it is with the voice that the Word is made known. Likewise, Christ was baptised by John, who admitted his need of being baptised by Him (Mt 3:14)… In brief, when John pointed to Christ it was as a man pointing to God, the incorporeal Saviour, as a voice pointing to the Word…”Origen (c.185-253)

Ant. The mouth of Zechariah was opened and he spoke this prophecy:

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel.

The Benedictus – Canticle of Zechariah
Luke 1:68-79
The Messiah and His forerunner

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel;
He has visited His people and redeemed them.

He has raised up for us a mighty saviour,
in the house of David, His servant,
as He promised by the lips of holy men,
those who were His prophets of old.

A Saviour who would free us from our foes,
from the hands of all who hate us.
So His love for our fathers is fulfilled
and His holy covenant remembered.

He swore to Abraham, our father, to grant us,
that free from fear and safe from the hands of our foes.
we might worship Him in justice and holiness
all the days of our lives, in His Presence.

As for you, little child,
you shall be called the prophet of God, the Most High.
You shall go ahead of the Lord
to prepare His ways before Him,

to make known to His people their salvation,
through forgiveness of all their sins,
the loving kindness of the heart of our God,
who visits us like the dawn from on high.

He will give light to those in darkness,
those who dwell in the shadow of death,
and to guide them into the way of peace.

Glory be to the Father
and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now,
and will be for ever.
Amen

Ant. The mouth of Zechariah was opened and he spoke this prophecy: 

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israelthe Benedictus - BEST - 19dec2018

Advertisements
Posted in ADVENT, BREVIARY Prayers, DOCTORS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL HOMILIES, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The CHRIST CHILD, The INCARNATION, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The WORD

Advent and Christmas Wisdom with St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787))

Advent and Christmas Wisdom with St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787))

18 December

Jesus made Himself a child to gain our confidence and our love.

“Consider that the Son of God has made Himself little in order to make us great. He has given Himself to us, that we might give ourselves to Him.   He has come to show us His love, that we may respond to it by giving Him ours.   Let us, therefore, receive Him with affection, let us love Him and call upon Him with all our needs.

“A child gives easily” says St Bernard. Children readily give whatever is asked of them. Jesus came into the world as a child to demonstrate that He was ready and willing to give all.   If we wish for light, Jesus has come to enlighten us.   If we desire strength, He will strengthen us.   If we wish for pardon, He has come to pardon us.   In short, He has come to give us all that we need.

O my Jesus, You have descended from heaven to give Yourself entirely to us.   How can we turn our backs on You?   I have been loved by You and I have also been ungrateful.  O my Redeemer, forgive the injuries that I have committed against You.”advent with st alphonsus - o my jesus 18dec 2018

Scripture

“It is now the hour for you to wake from sleep….Let us cast off deeds of darkness and put on the armour of light.”
Romans 13:11,12

Prayer

O LORD AND RULER
of the House of Israel,
who appeared to Moses in the flame of the burning bush
and gave him the law on Sinai:
Come and redeem us with outstretched arms.

Advent Action
Are we in the core group of Christians who embody and live the purest form of the Gospel?   Or do we find ourselves among the masses that acknowledge Jesus, enjoy being Christian but don’t pursue it at any deep level?   The two requirements in the Gospel are that we repent and believe.   If we repent, we do no wrong and speak no lies. If we believe with all our hearts, we follow the Star to the Manger.   Let these last few days be a time when we begin the journey to the Christmas core – to the Christ Child.   “Let us make ourselves ready to celebrate Christmas by contemplating Mary and Joseph- Mary, the woman full of grace who had the courage to entrust herself totally to the Word of God;  Joseph, the faithful and just man who chose to believe the Lord rather than listen to the voices of doubt and human pride.   With them, let us walk together toward Bethlehem.” ...Pope Francis – Angelus, 22 December 2013o-lord-and-ruler-18-december

Posted in BREVIARY Prayers, HYMNS, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN TITLES, Our MORNING Offering, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Our Morning Offering – 17 December – Prayer/Hymn to Our Lady of Good Remedy

Our Morning Offering – 17 December – The Memorial of St John of Matha O.SS.T (1160-1213) – Founder of the Trinitarians and the Devotion to Our Lady of Good Remedy

Prayer/Hymn to Our Lady of Good Remedy

O Mary, you accept our prayers
and lovingly grant remedy,
we ask you with humility,
remain with us continually.

Be with us if we fall in sin
and feel its cruel captivity,
break all the bonds which hold us chained,
and cleanse our hearts’ iniquity.

Help us when love is growing cold
and worldly lures lead us astray,
let heaven shine within our hearts
lest we forget salvation’s way.

Assist us in our sufferings,
when body soul or spirit fail.
Bring peace and calm into our lives
until the light of heaven prevail.

Be with your children at death’s hour,
protect them in your great pity,
that with your aid, they may enjoy
rewards throughout eternity.

With grateful hearts we sing your praise
with hymns unto the Trinity,
for giving us in all our needs
the Virgin as a remedy.
Amen.Breviary prayer hymn to our lady of good remedy - 17dec2018 stjohn of matha

From the Breviary Office of Readings for the Feast of Our Lady of Good Remedy

Posted in ADVENT, BREVIARY Prayers, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The WORD

Sunday Reflections – Gaudete Sunday

Sunday Reflections – Gaudete Sunday – The Third Sunday of Advent – 16 December 2018gaudete-sunday

What is special about the Third Sunday of Advent?   For much of the Church’s history, this Sunday had a special name:  “Gaudete” Sunday.   The traditions surrounding this Sunday go back as far as the fourth or fifth century, as does the season of Advent itself. Advent, our preparation for Christmas, was originally a forty-day penitential season like Lent.   In fact, since it used to begin on 12 November (just after the Memorial of St. Martin of Tours), it was called “St Martin’s Lent.”   “Gaudete Sunday” was the Advent counterpart to “Laetare Sunday,” which marks the mid-point in Lent.

On Gaudete Sunday, the season of Advent shifts its focus.   For the first two weeks of Advent, the focus can be summed up in the phrase, “The Lord is coming.”   But beginning with Gaudete Sunday, the summary might be, “The Lord is near.”   This shift is marked by a lighter mood and a heightened sense of joyous anticipation.

Liturgically, the colours lighten as well.   The priest usually wears rose-coloured vestments, a hue seen only on Gaudete Sunday and Laetare Sunday.   On this day, we light the third candle of the Advent wreath, which is also rose-coloured, or if you prefer, pink.
The word “Gaudete” is Latin for “Rejoice.”   This celebration is a reminder that God who loves us is still in charge and that we await His coming not with fear but with  tremendous joy.   Today’s Second Reading, from the Letter of St Paul to the Ephesians, reflects this joy:  “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.  Let all men know your forbearance. The Lord is at hand.  Have no anxiety about anything but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

THE “O ANTIPHONS” OF ADVENT

The one exception to the audio barrage of so-called ‘Christmas Hymns’ we hear during Advent, is the simple chant “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.”   This song, with its longing for the coming of the Saviour, genuinely belongs to Advent and not to Christmas.
Its melody is based on Gregorian chant and its verses are all taken from the Church’s “O antiphons.” These antiphons introduce the Magnificat, or Canticle of Mary, in the Evening Prayer of the Liturgy of the Hours from 17 December through 23 December.
Each antiphon begins with a traditional title for Christ.

They are: “O Wisdom,” “O Leader of the House of Israel
[Adonai],” “O Root of Jesse’s Stem,” “O Key of David,” “O Radiant Dawn,” “O King of all the nations,” and finally, “O Emmanuel” which means “God with us.”    Each of these traditional titles for the Messiah connects the coming of Christ with the prophetic writings of the Old Testament.stained_glass_o_antiphons.jpg

On the last days of Advent, you may wish to add these “O Antiphons” to your
evening prayer, your prayer at table, or your bedtime prayer.

17 DECEMBER
O Wisdom of our God Most High,
guiding creation with power and love:
come to teach us the path of knowledge!
18 DECEMBER
O Leader of the House of Israel,
giver of the Law to Moses on Sinai:
come to rescue us with your mighty power!
19 DECEMBER
O Root of Jesse’s stem,
sign of God’s love for all his people:
come to save us without delay!
20 DECEMBER
O Key of David,
opening the gates of God’s eternal Kingdom:
come and free the prisoners of darkness!
21 DECEMBER
O Radiant Dawn,
splendour of eternal light, sun of justice:
come and shine on those who dwell in darkness and in the shadow of death.
22 DECEMBER
O King of all nations and keystone of the Church:
come and save man, whom you formed from the dust!
23 DECEMBER
O Emmanuel, our King and Giver of Law:
come to save us, Lord our God!

the o antiphons

Posted in BREVIARY Prayers, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Our Morning Offering – 30 November – Breviary Hymn for the Feast of St Andrew, Apostle of Christ

Our Morning Offering – 30 November – The Feast of St Andrew, Apostle of Christ

Hymn/Prayer on the Feast of St Andrew
From the Breviary

Saint Andrew, who once cast your nets
Upon the lake of Galilee,
Show now your skill in catching souls,
And save us from the world’s wild sea.

Saint Peter’s brother during life,
Not even death your souls could part,
Since both endured the bitter cross
With patient and courageous heart.

True brothers in your work on earth,
Your crown of glory is the same,
Both fathers of the infant Church,
Both crucified for Jesus’ Name.

You were the first to find Our Lord,
And led your brother to His feet,
So help us on life’s weary way,
Befriend us in its dust and heat.

Companion of your brother’s toil,
Preserve the Church in charity,
That with Saint Peter, shepherd true,
We may serve God in unity.

Beloved Saint, so dear to Christ,
Help us to run the path of love,
That we may all God’s praises sing,
United in full joy above.
Amenst andrew who once cast your nets - breviary hymn for the feast of st andrew - 30 nov 2018

Posted in BREVIARY Prayers, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY CROSS

Our Morning Offering – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

Our Morning Offering – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

Breviary Hymn
O Cross of Christ
By St Flavian Bishop (Died 449 – Memorial 18 February), from Day’s Psalter 1562

O Cross of Christ, immortal tree
On which our Saviour died,
The world is sheltered by your arms
That bore the Crucified.

From bitter death and barren wood
the tree of life is made;
Its branches bear unfailing fruit
And leaves that never fade.

O faithful Cross, you stand unmoved
While ages run their course;
Foundation of the universe,
Creation’s minding force.

Give glory to the risen Christ
And to His Cross give praise,
The sign of God’s unfailing love,
The hope of all our days.o cross of christ - 14 sept exaltation of the holy cross - 14 sept 2018 breviary hymn

Posted in BREVIARY Prayers, HYMNS, MARTYRS, Our MORNING Offering, SAINT of the DAY

Our Morning Offering – 29 August – The Memorial of the Beheading of St John the Baptist

Our Morning Offering – 29 August – The Memorial of the Beheading of St John the Baptist

Lauds Hymn
Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal

God called great prophets to foretell
the coming of His Son.
The greatest, called before his birth,
was John, the chosen one.

His life was filled with joy and hope;
he knew he must decrease,
and that we must prepare a place
where Jesus may increase.

John searched in solitude for Christ
and knew Him when He came.
He showed the world the Lamb of God
and hailed Him in our name.

That lonely voice cried out the truth
Derided and denied.
As witness to the law of God
His mighty martyr died.

We praise You, Trinity in One,
the light of unknown ways,
the hope of all who search for You
whose love fills all our days.lauds hymn - memorial of st john the baptist - 29 aug 2018