Your Sunday Sermon Notes

This Sunday is the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, also called the Purification.

Did you hear a particularly good point in the sermon you heard at Mass to fulfill your Sunday obligation?

Meanwhile, here is something for your edification.  This is the third of the five prayers of blessings of candles during Mass, Candlemas.

Let us pray. O Lord Jesus Christ, the true Light who enlightenest every man that cometh into this world: pour forth Thy blessing + upon these candles, and sanctify + them with the light of Thy grace, and mercifully grant, that as these lights enkindled with visible fire dispel the darkness of night, so our hearts illumined by invisible fire, that is, by the splendor of the Holy Spirit, may be free from the blindness of all vice, that the eye of our mind being cleansed, we may be able to discern what is pleasing to Thee and profitable to our salvation; so that after the perilous darkness of this life we may deserve to attain to neverfailing light: through Thee, O Christ Jesus, Savior of the world, who in the perfect Trinity, livest and reignest, God, world without end.
R.: Amen.

A couple shots from Mass today, thanks to Elizabeth at Laetificat:

 

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47 Responses to Your Sunday Sermon Notes

  1. SPWang says:

    42°C, short one -

    “Today’s hot.
    So is Hell.
    Don’t go there.”

  2. I can’t comment on the content of the homily I heard, as it was entirely in Arabic (I am in the Holy Land with a group of priests, and we concelebrated Holy Mass in a parish in Jerusalem). But it was fervent, and the Mass featured lots of chant and incense–no Latin alas–and we were warmly welcomed with Turkish coffee afterward.

  3. AMTFisher says:

    Focused on Simeon and Anna. Both examples of patient hope. Interesting speculation/observation on Anna’s life (she was 84, likely would have been in the Temple when Pompey took Jerusalem and entered the Holy of Holies [depending on the date of our Lord's birth/when she got married, her husband could have been killed in the fight.] However it happened, she lost her husband, a pagan general forced his way into the Temple; it looked as if God had abandoned her and Israel; but, she still kept hope.) Similar speculation about Simeon (going to the Temple everyday, looking to see if God fulfilled his promise, perhaps lighting up everytime he saw a child, being disappointed each time it wasn’t the Messiah) Made the connection that we often can feel the same way: God’s not listening, God’s not there. Drew analogy from the weather (winter just keeps dragging on. Constantly hit by snow, cold, ice; no sign of letting up.) Then the Church celebrates a feast with lights and candles, a flame of hope. Simeon and Anna’s waiting/expectations/hopes are fulfilled when God comes to the Temple. Spring eventually overtakes winter. God beat the dark night of Death and lit up the world with the resurrection.

    Kind of a longer one, more points than that, but it was pretty good. (Ordinary Form)

  4. Mike says:

    NO: The blessed candles we take home today represent Christ’s light that we are to bring to our homes and our lives. Deacon’s homily tied the “light for revelation” in today’s Gospel to the light-related themes of last week’s and next week’s Gospels with sufficient deftness to make me (and, one hopes, other congregants as well) look them up when I got home.

  5. Elizabeth R says:

    I asked for a copy, so I can quote a few phrases exactly:

    “Back in my diocese in Korea, we celebrate this feast day praying especially for the religious who have dedicated themselves to living an ascetic life, since an ascetic life makes an excellent example of a consecrated life.

    “In our spiritual life, we deny and empty ourselves only to fulfil our souls with God’s presence. We detach ourselves from earthly pleasure not because we are monsters who are eager for suffering and pain, but because, only in that way, we can be united to God without being distracted by vain pleasure.

    “Thus, we choose to be poor to be truly rich in Christ; we choose to keep chastity to be fully united to God’s love; and we choose to be obedient to ultimately have true freedom in Christ.

    “My brothers and sisters, how do you live your life? Is your life different from that of others who do not have faith? If not, how could you say that you’re living a consecrated life, that is, a life dedicated to God. Remember that you belong to God, and your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. As the baby Jesus was presented at the altar on this day, now let us present ourselves to God in this Mass.”

  6. Priam1184 says:

    @Fr. Martin Fox I was welcomed into a religious goods shop in Bethlehem with a cup of Turkish coffee once. Excellent stuff. I wish you a safe journey.

    Father today talked first about Simeon and what it meant that he was ‘righteous and devout.’ He stated that this meant that he followed and was obedient to the will of God. He then went on to explain his first two prophecies about the ‘fall and rise of many in Israel’ and that the child would be ‘a sign that is contradicted’ and to elaborate that these illustrated what obedience to the will of God meant and that in fact obedience to the will of God means only one thing: the Cross. So if we wish to follow in the footsteps of Simeon and to live the life of Christ then we must pick up our cross every day. He then went on to talk about the piercing of the heart of Mary with the sword shaped by our sins. And how to pray both to and with the Mother of God as she will teach us how to live in obedience to the will of the Father as her Son did. As an illustration of this he started the Hail Holy Queen in the middle of his homily and I have to say that I was impressed with the number of people in the congregation who knew the words by heart.

  7. tjmurphy says:

    Although there had originally been plans to have a procession and bless candles, that fell through.
    We did have additional candles around the altar for a change which was nice, not just the 1 candle on either side as we usually do.
    We had a visiting priest from Human Life International with the traveling icon of Our Lady of Czestochowa. Father spoke about the icon, its history and experiences and positive results outside of several Planned Parenthood facilities around the country.
    One thing that really touched me was when he spoke of the unsuccessful attempts to correct the scars on the original Black Madonna icon. He said it was like Mary saying, see I too have suffered so I can understand your suffering.
    He said Our Lady changes hearts, changes minds and saves lives.

  8. pberginjr says:

    Visiting a parish (which we usually do to avoid the silly “mighty winders” when we miss the early services at our home parish); the opening focused on how today is traditionally the end of the Christmas season, but we’ve lost touch with our sense of the Liturgical Year because things are instantly seized upon and then discarded in our society today. We (as Catholics) need the rhythms of the Lit. Year to fill our lives and ground us in the Church.Also commentary on Simeon and Anna, Luke’s Infancy narrative as a whole (Temple – Zechariah/birth of John; Sacrifice – Mary’s fiat; Peace – Nativity of Jesus) reflected/summarized in Presentation itself (Temple – Simeon/location, Jesus is the new temple; Sacrifice – the act of presentation and offering of firstborn/Jesus Eternal High Priest; Peace – Nunc Dimittis/the end result of Jesus life, death and resurrection).

    Very thoughtful and much better than we could have gotten.

  9. Gaetano says:

    Father gave a beautiful exposition on Candlemass (while holding one of the lit altar candles). He then moved to the patient waiting of Simeon and Anna, and how we must learn to be patient in our own waiting.

    We are thankful for our faithful, articulate and orthodox priest.

  10. excalibur says:

    Father, who is 85 or 86 (and does a Latin Mass every Sunday) did his usual very nice homily at a Novus Ordo Mass Saturday evening. He sang part of a hymn they sang when he was in seminary, in Latin naturally.

    OT Mass Mobs

  11. Andreas says:

    Pfarrer Simon today also spoke of St. Blasius (Blaise) and after Mass had ended almost all in St. Ulrichskirche went forward to receive the Blessing of Blasius for good health (especially a healthy throat).

  12. mburn16 says:

    Encouragement to proclaim Christ, as was done in the readings throughout the Christmas season (by John the Baptist, by the Angels, etc). It’s the anniversary of the parish founding, so father shortens his readings-centered sermon to give an address on the general state of the parish. New Hymnals, check. New vestments, check. It seems we’re are to endure expect the installation of four new 80″ TV screens inside the sanctuary for purposes that I have yet to fully understand.

    Also a call for younger individuals to step up as part of a transition of church affairs (its the 25th anniversary) to the next generation.

  13. incredulous says:

    We had a beautiful TLM celebration of Candlemas in Miami. Takeaway from Msgr Castanada’s homily: don’t put your blessed candle in the window to help you win a Jai alai bet.

  14. Today’s sermon at TLM seemed somewhat off the beaten track, in that it observed Candlemas by focusing on the antiphons of today’s Divine Office of the Purification, and Vatican II’s call for the laity as well as clergy and religious to sanctify the hours of the day by praying the DO/LOH, particularly Lauds and Vespers–which are sung morning and night on weekdays here at Holy Ghost Church in Knoxville–with comments on the role of the Divine Office in the development of the liturgy of the Church.

  15. Woody79 says:

    As I read the second reading from Hebrews, I noticed that 2:17 was written and proclaimed as follows: “…therefore, he had to become like his brothers and sisters in every way, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest before God to expiate the sins of the people.” Is that correct? When I checked my NAB bible and DR Vulgate at home, it is written as “brothers” and “brethren”, respectively, not adding “and sisters” to the verse. Why would the the verse as read in the Mass today refer to brothers and sisters when it seems the author is referring to a priesthood which is made up only of males? Why was this verse changed? I thought we were not allowed to change the bible unless we are called “protestants.”

  16. Today was also Presentation of Our Lord in the Byzantine Church, Father’s homily can be summed up in two points. Zaccheus shows us how to respond to God’s grace (there was no miracle involved)….and Our Lady and Our Lord show us how to follow the laws (even though it wasn’t necessary for them)…

  17. iPadre says:

    On Christmas, the Light came to Mary and a few in the Manger. Epiphany, the Light shone upon the New Jerusalem (the Church). Today, the Church places the light in our hands. We are sent forth to proclaim the Light – Jesus Christ and His Church (Our Mother, who provides everything we need to get to the Kingdom – Sacraments, sacramentals, Our Lady, Saints, doctrines and morals).

  18. asperges says:

    I managed to attend two processions and (EF) masses, the first being in the Dominican usage. The sermon outlined the Christ Light of the world theme as well as the fact that as Christ was presented in the Temple, Simeon representing the longing of previous ages of which Christ was its fulfilment. Then some consideration of the interpretation of the candle: body, wick and flame, symbolic of the the Trinity and like so much else in the liturgy never employed without good cause: not an empty gesture at ‘ambiance’ or mood but deeply symbolic. This feast is traditionally termed Candlemas in the UK.

  19. jameeka says:

    The four last things, and spiritual warfare..After all, we are each a candle burning out…

  20. Jim in Seattle says:

    Candlemass TLM ceremony with the blessing of the candles, then a procession outside (fun to watch the children try to keep their candles lit, or run around to get them re-lit). Many points in Father’s sermon. One I found especially interesting – how the candle wax represents the virginal flesh of the Devine Infant, the wick His soul, and the flame His divinity. Later found out it is attributed to St Anselm.

  21. I ended up attending Mass twice, at two different parishes this morning.
    So, first, the good news: at the second Mass, at my own parish (for which I give thanks), Father made the excellent point that since each of us baptized is a member of the Mystical Body and that this Body’s union transcends space and time, we too were presented in the temple along with the Infant Jesus, and therefore are consecrated to the Father in Him.
    Now, the not-so-good news: at the first Mass, at St. Elsewhere the Confused’s, I was shocked to see EMHCs of both sexes blessing people who approached but did not take Communion, making the Sign of the Cross with a raised right hand or signing their foreheads. By what right and with what efficacy could they possibly be doing such a thing? Do the laity have the power to bless??
    Oh, but wait! There’s more!
    One old woman approaching on her walker was denied Communion on the tongue. The EMHC told her he couldn’t give her communion that way. Fortunately, she was able to let go of the walker long enough to receive successfully, in the hand.
    Aaaugh!!!
    PS. Oh, and I forgot to mention.. at the very end of Mass, all the Boy and Girl Scouts in attendance were called up to the front of the sanctuary and the congregation invited to bless them, manibus extensis. The prayer said over them asked for God’s guidance as they developed their characters through Scouting. No mention of the partnership with Planned Parenthood whatsoever.

  22. incredulous says:

    @Romeo,
    I’ve done that as an EHMC. I never even knew there was an issue with the ministry until I started reading Father Z, Free Republic, and Churchmilitant. Then I realizes this blessing thing was probably wrong. So, I stopped doing it. Then I had a father basically call me out in a communion line for not blessing his child. Unfortunately, he’s a different color and I think he took it that it was an act of racism. It would have been un-Christian to make a scene, so after I asked our beloved Msgr., about the whole incident. He said that, yes, I cannot bless anybody and asked me to share that with the other EHMC’s. He suggested to just place your hand on the child’s head, not say anything and then move on.

    Please, you all must exhibit a modicum of charity in terms of not assuming people are doing this maliciously. I personally am trying to learn as much as I can and be a better servant of Christ. Such rancor and contentiousness drives people away rather than recruits them to your position. Since reading you all here, I have sought out and found an AD TLM, no longer get my latin fix at an SSPX chapel which was where I turned to see what it was all about. Your message is a good one, and as is written, the truth shall set you free. But, you can’t drive people away with prideful and arrogant behavior.

    [Interesting post. A heap of experience and emotion there.]

  23. M. K. says:

    A number of good points, but the one that really stuck with me concerned the Purification. Father likened Mary’s purification after the birth of Jesus to the purification of the chalice at Mass, as the experience of being the Mother of God hallowed her body much as the vessels are hallowed by their use in the sacrifice. Father also tied in traditions regarding the churching of the mother after childbirth; we shouldn’t think that the message being conveyed is that childbirth is something icky or profane but rather be reminded of the holiness of the body and the sense in which we participate in the creative work of God through procreation.

  24. @incredulous: I am sorry my tone offended you. I hope it will reassure you at least to know that I behaved myself while I was at St. Elswhere’s; I’m just not used to that sort of thing. My own parish is solidly Novus Ordo but everything is done with the reverence and seriousness appropriate to sacred things; communion on the tongue is the norm and all the EMHCs are habited religious.
    What I saw at St. Elsewhere’s struck me as ill-considered goofballery, but not malice. Indeed, I can’t quite wrap my mind around the idea of blessing people maliciously. What would that even look like? [Great point.]
    A rhetorical question, for sure.

  25. AdTrinitatemPerMariam says:

    Today Father exhorted us to pay attention to the little things in our life; all the big things are made up of little things. ($17 trillion is made up of pennies; a snow bank is made up of “gazillions” of individual snowflakes, etc.) Likewise, spiritual growth is achieved not in grandiose, Hollywood-style moments, but in very small ways. Second by second we can grow in holiness, if we take advantage of the graces offered to us. Similarly, we fall into big sins by not being diligent in the little things. Fr. cited the example of David from this past week’s readings: David’s sin of adultery didn’t start out as lust, but rather as laziness; when his men went out to battle, he stayed home.
    Jesus, Mary, and Joseph followed the Law in all its little details, going up to the Temple to be purified even though, arguably, they were not in need of purification. Jesus, all throughout His life and even up to the moment of His death, took great pains to fulfill all the little details that had been prophesied about Him over thousands of years. And just as a great sequoia tree starts out small and grows by fractions of millimeters, so it is in the spiritual life.

  26. MikeToo says:

    Lots of good points in this Homily. Father reminded us of the presentation, candlemass and blessing of thoughts.

    Father pointed out that Presentation in the Temple did not have a direct correlation to a practice in the Church today. The closest correlation is what happens at Baptism. The child is given the gift of faith which is also related to the candles we took home today.

    He told a story about a man who was told to carry a lantern on his journey. When he started out the lantern lit his way and helped him along. Then, when it was day, the heavy lantern seemed an extra burden but as the sun set the lantern became useful again. This story can be related to faith and how many young adults feel the practice of the faith is unneeded when they are still young and things are going great.

    Father said parents should keep the faith and continue to pray when children don’t seem to live up to their baptism. He ended with a quote from Francis DeSales, “There is a time to speak to your children of God and there is a time to speak to God of your children.”

  27. Gratias says:

    EF today. Sometimes we go through our journey with only a candle to light our way only one step ahead at the time. I had never been to Candlemass before.

    Elisabeth from Madison: Thank you for your always insightful contributions at this great Catholic site.

  28. JuliB says:

    Forgive me Father, since I managed to forget the (short) sermon. However we received a general blessing at the end of Mass for St Blaise’s Feast Day tomorrow, and after Mass they did individual blessings of the throat with candles. The line had almost as many people as did the Communion line.

    We did not receive candles this year, but our pastor had knee surgery since he will be gone for a year because he is a military chaplain. I think the candles fell through the cracks because he’s pretty good about these things.

  29. zag4christ says:

    Our priest concentrated on the Gospel. He discussed the importance of religion in conjunction with our faith in Christ. He spoke of Mary and Joseph being very religious, following the rituals of their religion in presenting Jesus to the Temple. And obviously Jesus was brought up by them to be religious. Fr. Connall emphasized the value and importance of our religious practices, citing the rosary, Adoration, novena’s etc., and encouraged all to present their prayer petitions for healing to be prayed for by the community during our upcoming novena to Our Lady of Lourdes, the Patroness of our Cathedral here in Spokane WA.
    Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us!

  30. markomalley says:

    Although not a comment on the homily I heard yesterday (it was, frankly, somewhat unmemorable), I’d encourage readers to take a look at Msgr Pope’s reflection from yesterday evening: A Dramatic Biblical Moment that almost Every one Missed

  31. JonPatrick says:

    At the presentation we see a change from the old Covenant to the new which will be preached to all people not just the Jews. Jesus is the Light of the world, a world that is in darkness due to sin. We also need to be the Light, to spread it in our daily lives.

  32. Gregg the Obscure says:

    I was pleasantly startled to hear this from a priest who, to my knowledge, doesn’t even use EP I.

    The blessing of candles is a wonderful, if disused, custom that marks our homes as Catholic homes and reminds us of Christ the Light of the world. Other good customs like this include maintaining crucifixes and holy water. It is fitting to use holy water both on entering and leaving the home.

  33. avatquevale says:

    Father walked through the assembly and blessed our candles. His homilies, always beautiful (Jesuits are good at sermons), was about the meaning of the candles. Then he neatly segued from light to enlightenment to an inspirational encouragement of vocations, addressing all the young members there.
    Had I been a young man in the assembly I would have joined a seminary straight away.

    Father skipped the Confiteor, Kryrie and Gloria.

    I wondered if the omission was standard operating procedure on the feast of Purification or if it was to allow time for what happened later.

    At the end of Mass, after the announcements and before the final blessing, Father sat down. There was a loud eruption. A clown dressed as a court jester bounded up to the sanctuary and started yelling a call. A woman wearing a waist length blonde wig and dressed as a grown-up and seductive Heidi of the Alps. apparently heeding his call, ran from the back of the Church to join him in the sanctuary. Then Pierrot and Heidi screamed a series of announcements about the up-and-coming carnival for which they were selling tickets.

    I felt I was hearing circus barkers.

    Father, who is also our Pastor . smiled indulgently through the performance

    Am I turning curmudgeonly to feel concerned/upset?

  34. nemo says:

    EF: Father spoke about the Jewish rite of purification. Mary really did not need it because she was free of original sin, but she was obedient to the Mosaic law. He explained that the Churching of Women, which is not widely known nowadays, is based on this ancient Jewish rite. The Church has so many beautiful rites that he wants everyone to be aware of them.

  35. Ellen says:

    Our assistant priest officiated. He’s from Mexico and his English is not good, so I couldn’t understand a lot. But he is a kind and very holy man and I pray for him. After Mass, we had the blessing of throats and almost everyone stayed for that.

  36. scarda says:

    O.F. early Mass. Marvelous, life-changing homily on the earlier Greek name of the feast, The Encounter. Anna had waited her whole life in hopeful expectation of such an encounter with the Messiah. Afterwards she told everyone about it, sharing the encounter as we are called to do. Likewise Simeon had prayed for one encounter with the Messiah, and recognized the summit and fulfillment of his life, thanking God for having allowed him to experience it.

    We should recognize in every encounter with Our Lord such life-changing power, and should allow every encounter we have with Christ to move, inspire, fulfill, and change us as thoroughly as Anna and Simeon did in their only encounter. We are extraordinarily blessed to be able to encounter God daily, in the flesh, and not just once in a lifetime. We should carry our encounters with Christ to the world so that it may be utterly changed.

  37. St. Epaphras says:

    EF Mass with traditional blessing of candles and procession. Young diocesan priest. One of the good points of the sermon: Father spoke openly about our evangelizing, though he did not use that word, by our lives by letting the light of Christ shine so others could see it. He said some people would be interested in the faith after seeing our lives and then would ask and conversions would be the result. The part that struck me most was that he was being very direct about conversions into the Church. He did not give the impression we should just love them and encourage them to be good whatevers. Of course I’m paraphrasing and selling him short as I didn’t take notes.

  38. Theo-Philo SWO says:

    My family and I attended a beautiful EF mass at St. John Cantius in Chicago. Father’s homily started by briefly touching on all the names given to this Sunday: The Presentation of our Lord, The Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Candlemas, and Suscepimus Sunday, with a longer liturgical and Latin grammar explanation of the last, least well known title. He then gave a brief meditation on each of the main people present for this event. His descriptions of Simeon and Anna both struck me. For Simeon, he made the point that he represents the transition from the OT priesthood to the NT priesthood found in Christ and the Church today. For Anna, he connected her life lived in the Temple with consecrated religious, especially those living cloistered and contemplative vocations.

  39. HighMass says:

    Maybe off the subject but Did anyone watch the Pontifical High Mass from Oklahoma, Bishop Slattery said it….it was BEAUTIFUL….Great thanks to the FSSP for assisting Bishop Slattery!

    We need more Bishops like Bishop Slattery!

  40. Uxixu says:

    I was a bit distracted by the Deacon (following the recent example of the pastor) who delivered his homily from just inside the altar rail. He also joked about it being Super Sunday though with the good intention of trying to say the reason was for the Feast of the Presentation with the football game being secondary. Not a bad homily but a bit too much of… his performance being the subject instead of the teaching, by my reckoning.

  41. de_cupertino says:

    I heard a superb homily at St. Albert the Great in Palo Alto, CA. The priest, a young Dominican, preached on the theme of Light and Darkness in salvation history. A few quick points include Genesis God separating light from darkness, through to the Presentation. Father also touched on the Transfiguration, at which the Apostles saw Christ in his pure uncreated divine light. I cannot do it justice here, but this was the first time I understood the significance of either the Presentation or Transfiguration.

    Also, this was the first Candlemas procession in my entire life of Sunday masses, so very happy for that. In my 28 years of Sunday Masses, I didn’t even know such a liturgical observance existed!

  42. timfout says:

    It was wonderful to experience the three separate times we lit our candles in the EF. 1. Procession, 2, Gospel, and 3. Canon. Father’s sermon was quite good speaking of the sacrifice offered by Mary and Joseph as prefiguring the sacrifice of Our Lord. He also made several other good points concerning Anna. (Memory failing at the moment.)

  43. MJFarber says:

    In his famous work “L’Année Liturgique” (“The Liturgical Year”), Dom Guéranger explains the symbolism of candles:

    “The mystery of today’s ceremony (Candlemas) has frequently been explained by liturgists, dating from the 7th century. According to Ivo of Chartres, the wax, which is formed from the juice of flowers by the bee, always considered as the emblem of virginity, signifies the virginal flesh of the Divine Infant, who diminished not, either by His conception or His birth, the spotless purity of His Blessed Mother. The same holy bishop would have us see, in the flame of our Candle, a symbol of Jesus who came to enlighten our darkness. St. Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, speaking on the same mystery, bids us consider three things in the blessed Candle: the wax, the wick, and the flame. The wax, he says, which is the production of the virginal bee, is the Flesh of our Lord; the wick, which is within, is His Soul; the flame, which burns on top, is His divinity.”

  44. Elizabeth D says:

    I flunk at sermon notes this week. I had slept extremely poorly and that may be why don’t remember much about the homilies I heard Sunday (Fr Z, Bishop Morlino, Judicial Vicar Fr Tait Schroeder, the last I just stopped in the Mass to hear the homily… yet I don’t remember). The TLM was High Mass and I was in the choir so that is my other excuse why I was distracted. But the pictures are Fr Z’s Mass of Candlemas Sunday at Holy Redeemer Church in Madison.

  45. JacobWall says:

    Father offered a message for the elderly and parents; if you don’t tell your children/younger people when they do wrong, who will? He explained that many older people he talks to see their grown up children making very wrong decisions in life and keep their mouth shut because they don’t want to interfere or look like they’re forcing their way of life on them. Yet, with the guidance of the older generation now being held back, many problems are running rampant unchecked. Of course, not all young people will listen to the advice of the older generations, but how will they choose if they don’t even hear it? And of course, not all will like it at the time, even those who do choose to follow it, but in the future they will be thankful. He offered some real life stories, (including choices like who to marry, putting family before work, etc.)

    I greatly appreciate this point! When I was making the most wrong decisions in my life, my parents did not hesitate to tell me, in kindness. While I only listened some of the time, they were a great help in getting me back on track. Also, I think we now see an older generation in which those with the silliest ideas have not hesitated to speak out boldly, while those with their heads screwed on straight have often been coerced or shamed into keeping their mouths shut.

    This is the second great point our priest has made in a few weeks about the ministry of the elderly. (The last one was the importance of the prayerful elderly – a great help to priests, parents and the young in general.) I love these points because while the New Evangelization has a wonderful focus on new things happening with the younger generation, the prayer, experience and guidance of the elderly will offer much needed support.

    (I missed the first few minutes of the sermon, so I’m not sure what the connection was to the Presentation; perhaps something about Simeon and Anna, whose ministry as elderly people of God was so strong. An excellent sermon in any case!)

  46. JacobWall says:

    Of course, we also had the blessing of the candles. Our priest told us that they were especially good for use when someone is dying, or when there is a storm – not only snow storms (of which we’re having plenty these days) but also our spiritual storms.