Daily Archives: 17 December 2006

3rd Sunday of Advent: COLLECT (2)

EXCERPT:
This offertory embodies a word pair describing the attitude of Advent: joyful penance… penitential joy. With the last two week’s of “rushing” in our prayers and doing good works, we have now the added image of eager and unrestrained joy, an almost childlike dash towards a long-desired thing. Have earthly fathers watched this scene all of a Christmas morning? Even so should we be in our eager joy to perform good works under the gaze of a Father who watches us, a Father with a plan. This lame duck ICEL version captures little of the impact of the Latin prayer, that is, God the Father is patiently watching his people as we go about the Advent business of doing penance and just works in joyful anticipation Christ’s coming. But perhaps you will be good enough to respond with an eager and joyfully penitential “Amen” when you hear it pronounced even as you long for a better translation in the future. Continue reading

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Last Days of Advent: 17 December

We have come to the last days of the Church’s preparation for the feast of the Nativity of the Lord.
COLLECT: Deus, humanae conditor et redemptor naturae, qui Verbum tuum in utero perpetuae virginitatis carnem assumere voluisti, respice propitius ad preces … Continue reading

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3rd Sunday of Advent: SUPER OBLATA (2)

EXCERPT:
Today’s prayer was, as we read above, among those used to admonish people to fast during the seventh month. We have ancient sermons about this September fast time as well as the Advent fast of the “tenth month” (time was calculated a little differently then because the calendar had little by little drifted). For example, we have the wisdom of Pope St. Leo I (+461), nicknamed “the Great”, about the Advent fast: “What can be more salutary for us than fasting, by the practice of which we draw nearer to God, and, standing fast against the devil, defeat the vices that lead us astray. For fasting was ever the food of virtue. From abstinence there arise chaste thoughts, just decisions, salutary counsels. And through voluntary suffering the flesh dies to the concupiscences, and the spirit waxes strong in virtue. But as the salvation of our souls is not gained solely by fasting, let us fill up what is wanting in our fasting with almsgiving to the poor. Let us give to virtue what we take from pleasure. Let abstinence of those who fast be the dinner of the poor.” Another great saint with the nickname “the Great”, St. Basil of Caesarea (+379) hammered home the urgency of Advent almsgiving: “The command is clear: the hungry person is dying now, the naked person is freezing now, the person in debt is beaten now – and you want to wait until tomorrow?” In the ancient Church fasting from good things was closely connected to good works of mercy for the poor, especially almsgiving. Do not forget this, O Catholic reader. Continue reading

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3rd Sunday of Advent: POST COMMUNION (2)

What Does the Prayer Really Say?  3rd Sunday of Advent “Gaudete” – Station: St. Peter in the Vatican
ORIGINALLY PRINTED IN The Wanderer in 2006
I have had interesting correspondence with a scholar of Latin, Claudia Wick, who works for the Munich … Continue reading

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