Monday, November 30, 2020

Mediation For Advent

Hail and blessed be the hour and the moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in piercing cold. In that hour vouchsafe, O my God, to hear my prayer and grant my desires, through the merits of Our Savior Jesus Christ, and of His Blessed Mother. Amen.

To be recited 15 times a day from the Feast of St. Andrew's (November 30) until Christmas.

(Fedora Doff to Drew at the Shrine of the Holy Whapping.)

**********

Originally posted 12/1/2005.
Re-posted 11/29/2008.
Re-posted 11/28/2009.
Re-posted 11/27/2010.
Re-posted 11/26/2011.
Re-posted 12/2/2012.
Re-posted 11/30/2013.
Re-posted 11/29/2014.
Re-posted 11/28/2015.
Re-posted 11/30/2016.
Re-posted 11/30/2017.
Re-posted 11/30/2018.
Re-posted 11/30/2019.

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Advent Prayer

O Lovely Infant Jesus, You will abide with me once more.
O that I might prepare for You an agreeable dwelling place in my heart.
Jesus, Almighty Savior, come to my aid!
Bless me, hands of my infant Savior!
May Your love remain in my heart, dear Jesus!
Be born again in me.
Bless me and give me simplicity of heart, humility, and obedience.

St. John Neumann (1811-1860)

++++++++++

Originally posted 11/26/2005.
Re-posted 11/29/2008.
Re-posted 11/28/2009.
Re-posted 11/27/2010.
Re-posted 11/26/2011.
Re-posted 12/2/2012.
Re-posted 11/30/2013.
Re-posted 11/29/2014.
Re-posted 11/28/2015.
Re-posted 11/29/2016.
Re-posted 12/2/2017.
Re-posted 11/30/2019.

Saturday, November 28, 2020

Seeking The Light

Sunset comes upon us; and with it, the beginning of a new liturgical year. As the Northern Hemisphere plunges headlong into longer stretches of darkness, humanity seems to take up the battle to bring more light into the world. As I made reference in my first Christmas Eve Reflection, this annual skirmish is a reminder of our fallen nature and the need for redemption.

Plenty of people have completed decorating for Christmas already, while others are still working on it. All the external trappings are welcome, but we as Christians enter a time for interior preparation. While we  wait in darkness, we prepare for Light. While we still see lots of green (and red and other colors), purple is the primary color for the next "four" weeks.

We have entered the season of Advent. A time of waiting, of anticipation, of longing, of hope. The focus is on the two arrivals of Jesus Christ:  recalling His first appearance on earth and leading up to His second. We know not the day of the latter, but the former has been fixed for quite a while. Now the People of God begin their annual journey toward Bethlehem with prayer and reflection, fasting (for we are readying ourselves for a feast), and counting down the time when the Blessed Virgin Mary's confinement will be complete and the beginning of the end of the salvation promised to us will commence.

Prepare the Advent wreath.

Prepare the creche.

Prepare the gifts.

Prepare the tree.

Prepare the food.

But most of all, prepare your hearts.

"Prepare the way of the Lord; make straight His paths."

Thursday, November 26, 2020

2020 Thanksgiving Day Card

 


May we be truly thankful for all the blessings we have received from God. May we be truly grateful for the abundance and necessities He provides. May we become as generous and loving in our giving to others as He is.

Happy Thanksgiving, Everybody!

Another Thankgiving Proclamation

Until President Abraham Lincoln fixed the date of Thanksgiving Day in 1863, there were sporadic proclamations for a national day of thanksgiving. Below is a resolution passed by Congress calling for the people to gather together and be grateful.

**********

Whereas the Congress of the United States, by a joint resolution of the two Houses, have signified a request that a day may be recommended to be observed by the people of the United States with religious solemnity as a day of public humiliation and prayer; and

Whereas in times of public calamity such as that of the war brought on the United States by the injustice of a foreign government it is especially becoming that the hearts of all should be touched with the same and the eyes of all be turned to that Almighty Power in whose hand are the welfare and the destiny of nations:

I do therefore issue this my proclamation, recommending to all who shall be piously disposed to unite their hearts and voices in addressing at one and the same time their vows and adorations to the Great Parent and Sovereign of the Universe that they assemble on the second Thursday of September next in their respective religious congregations to render Him thanks for the many blessings He has bestowed on the people of the United States; that He has blessed them with a land capable of yielding all the necessaries and requisites of human life, with ample means for convenient exchanges with foreign countries; that He has blessed the labors employed in its cultivation and improvement; that He is now blessing the exertions to extend and establish the arts and manufactures which will secure within ourselves supplies too important to remain dependent on the precarious policy or the peaceable dispositions of other nations, and particularly that He has blessed the United States with a political Constitution rounded on the will and authority of the whole people and guaranteeing to each individual security, not only of his person and his property, but of those sacred rights of conscience so essential to his present happiness and so dear to his future hopes; that with those expressions of devout thankfulness be joined supplications to the same Almighty Power that He would look down with compassion on our infirmities; that He would pardon our manifold transgressions and awaken and strengthen in all the wholesome purposes of repentance and amendment; that in this season of trial and calamity He would preside in a particular manner over our public councils and inspire all citizens with a love of their country and with those fraternal affections and that mutual confidence which have so happy a tendency to make us safe at home and respected abroad; and that as He was graciously pleased heretofore to smile on our struggles against the attempts of the Government of the Empire of which these States then made a part to wrest from them the rights and privileges to which they were entitled in common with every other part and to raise them to the station of an independent and sovereign people, so He would now be pleased in like manner to bestow His blessing on our arms in resisting the hostile and persevering efforts of the same power to degrade us on the ocean, the common inheritance of all, from rights and immunities belonging and essential to the American people as a coequal member of the great community of independent nations; and that, inspiring our enemies with moderation, with justice, and with that spirit of reasonable accommodation which our country has continued to manifest, we may be enabled to beat our swords into plowshares and to enjoy in peace every man the fruits of his honest industry and the rewards of his lawful enterprise.

If the public homage of a people can ever be worthy the favorable regard of the Holy and Omniscient Being to whom it is addressed, it must be that in which those who join in it are guided only by their free choice, by the impulse of their hearts and the dictates of their consciences; and such a spectacle must be interesting to all Christian nations as proving that religion, that gift of Heaven for the good of man, freed from all coercive edicts, from that unhallowed connection with the powers of this world which corrupts religion into an instrument or an usurper of the policy of the state, and making no appeal but to reason, to the heart, and to the conscience, can spread its benign influence everywhere and can attract to the divine altar those freewill offerings of humble supplication, thanksgiving, and praise which alone can be acceptable to Him whom no hypocrisy can deceive and no forced sacrifices propitiate.

Upon these principles and with these views the good people of the United States are invited, in conformity with the resolution aforesaid, to dedicate the day above named to the religious solemnities therein recommended.


Given at Washington, this 23d day of July, A. D. 1813.


JAMES MADISON.

Sunday, November 22, 2020

"Ode" To St. Cecilia

This year, with the feast of St. Cecilia falling on the same day as the solemnity of Christ the King, I decided not to create an original post honoring the patron saint of musicians. Instead, I will provide a list of past posts on the subject. (It also gave me a chance to clean up some of the typesetting removed when I switched to this version of Blogger.)

While I try to make this an annual contribution, there is no post for 2019.There are occasions when something like this slips my mind. This is an example. Oh, well; life goes on.

I hope you find them worthy of your consideration now as you did then.

2005:  Musical Quotes And Thoughts

2006:  Quotes And Notes

2007:  Quotable On Notes

2008:  Canto; Ergo, Sum

2009:  Mechanical Musicianship

2010:  Make We Music

2011:  Cecilia: Virgin & Martyr

2012:  To The Musical Maiden

2013:  A Poet's Notes On Notes

2014:  A Church Musician's Musings

2015:  "Music, When Soft Voices Die"

2016:  Producing Melody; Making Harmony

2017:  Cantate Domino 

2018:  Musical Quotes Through The Ages

Royal Hymn

In honor of the Feast of Christ the King, I present excerpts of the hymn Christus Vincit as it was chanted at the 2010 CMAA Winter Chant Intensive. (In case you want to know what I look like, I am the first one in the front pew with the rest of the men.)



The text and translation is courtesy of The Parish Book of Chant.

**********

Christus vincit! Christus regnat! Christus imperat!

Exaudi, Christe.

Benedicto, Summo Pontifici, in unum populos doctrina congreganti caritate: Pastori gratia gregi obsequentia.

Salvator mundi, Tu illum adjuva.
Sancta Maria, Tu illum adjuva.
Sancte Petre, Tu illum adjuva.
Sancte Paule, Tu illum adjuva.
Sancte Benedicte, Tu illum adjuva.

Rex regum! Rex noster! Spes nostra! Gloria nostra!

Magistratibus et omnibus concivibus nobiscum orantibus: cordis vera quies votorum effctus.

Auxilium christianorum, Tu illos adjuva.
Sancte Michael, Tu illos adjuva.
Sancte Benedicte, Tu illos adjuva.

Ipsi soli imperium, laus et jubilatio per infinita saecula saeculorum. Amen.

Tempora bona habeant! Tempora bona habeant redempti Sanguine Christi.

Feliciter!

Pax Christi veniat! Regnum Christi veniat! Deo Gratias! Amen.

++++++++++

Christ conquers! Christ reigns! Christ commands!

Give ear, O Christ!

To the Supreme Pontiff [Benedict], who gathereth into one all peoples through doctrine, in charity: let there be dignity for our Shepherd, and obedience for his flock.

O Saviour of the world, grant him assistance.
Holy Mary,...
Holy Peter,...
Holy Paul,...
Holy Benedict,...

King of Kings! Our King! Our hope! Our glory!

To the magistrates and all fellow citizens praying with us: let the effect of their devotions be true rest for the heart.

O help of Christians, grant them assistance.
Holy Michael,...
Holy Benedict,...

Let all power, praise, and jubilation be to Him alone, through endless ages to ages. Amen.

May they have prosperous times! May they have prosperous times by the redemptive Blood of Christ!

Joyously!

Let the Peace of Christ come! Let the Reign of Christ come! Thanks be to God! Amen.

++++++++++

Originally posted 11/20/2011.
Re-posted 11/25/2012.
Re-posted 11/23/2014.
Re-posted 11/22/2015.
Re-posted 11/20/2016.
Re-posted 11/26/2017.
Re-posted 11/25/2018.
Re-posted 11/24/2019.

Christus Rex


1. To Jesus Christ, our Sov'reign King,
Who is the world's salvation,
All praise and homage do we bring,
And thanks and adoration.

Refrain:  Christ Jesus Victor, Christ Jesus Ruler!
Christ Jesus, Lord and Redeemer!

2. Thy reign extend, O King benign,
To ev'ry land and nation,
For in Thy kingdom, Lord divine,
Alone we find salvation.

(Refrain)

3. To Thee and to Thy Church, great King,
We pledge our hearts' oblation,
Until before Thy throne we sing,
In endless jubilation.

(Refrain)

From the 2 Hearts Network, here is a link to prayers specifically about our King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

**********

Originally posted 11/25/2007.
Re-posted 11/21/2010.
Re-posted 11/25/2012.
Re-posted 11/24/2013.
Re-posted 11/23/2014.
Re-posted 11/22/2015.
Re-posted 11/20/2016.
Re-posted 11/26/2017.
Re-posted 11/25/2018.
Re-posted 11/24/2019.

Thursday, November 12, 2020

November 2020 Morning Offering Prayer Intention

 Here is the intention for this month when reciting the Morning Offering:

Artificial Intelligence. We pray that the progress of robotics and artificial intelligence may always serve humankind.

A reflection for this intention is found here.

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Veteran's Day Acknowledgement

My two brothers are veterans of the Air Force. I have other relatives who have served in various branches of the military. I personally owe them a debt of gratitude for their service to the country. To all other veterans, that gratitude, while not as personal, is nonetheless heartfelt.

Our active military personnel take the following oath (those in the National Guard take a similar oath which includes obeying orders from their state's Governor):
I, (NAME), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.
For those who preserve our freedom, we salute you!

NOTE: I gave a Fedora Doff to a Facebook friend who posted a video on my wall which I had placed here in 2010. I no longer have that link.

**********

Originally posted 11/11/2010.
Re-posted 11/11/2011.
Re-posted 11/11/2012.
Updated and edited 11/11/2013.
Re-posted 11/11/2014.
Re-posted 11/11/2015.
Re-posted 11/11/2016.
Re-posted 11/11/2017.
Re-posted 11/11/2019.

Monday, November 02, 2020

The Church Suffering


Le Jour des Morts by William Bougueareau
The souls of the just are in the hand of God, and no torment shall touch them. They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead; and their passing away was thought an affliction and their going forth from us, utter destruction. But they are in peace. For if before men, indeed, they be punished, yet is their hope full of immortality; chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed, because God tried them and found them worthy of himself. As gold in the furnace, he proved them, and as sacrificial offerings he took them to himself. In the time of their visitation they shall shine, and shall dart about as sparks through stubble; they shall judge nations and rule over peoples, and the LORD shall be their King forever. Those who trust in him shall understand truth, and the faithful shall abide with him in love: because grace and mercy are with his holy ones, and his care is with his elect.

Wisdom 3:1-9

The last on the list of the seven Spiritual Works of Mercy is to pray for the dead. The month of November is devoted to doing that, as many parishes have a "Book of the Dead" and remember "those who have gone before us marked with the sign of faith." Fish Eaters also has an article describing other practices to free souls from Purgatory.

++++++++++

Requiem aeternam dona ei (eis) Domine; et lux perpetua luceat ei (eis).
Requiescat (Requiescant) in pace. Amen.

++++++++++

Eternal rest grant unto him/her (them), O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon him/her (them).
May he/she (they) rest in peace. Amen.

**********

Originally posted 11/2/2006.
Re-posted 11/2/2008.
Re-posted 11/2/2009.
Re-posted 11/2/2010.
Re-posted 11/2/2012.
Re-posted 11/2/2013.
Re-posted 11/2/2014.
Re-posted 11/2/2015.
Re-posted 11/2/2016.
Re-posted 11/2/2017.
Re-posted 11/2/2018.
Re-posted 11/2/2019.

Sunday, November 01, 2020

Today's Hymn


The Forerunners of Christ with Saints and Martyrs 
by Fra Angelico

The words are from the pen of William Walsham How; the tune to which this is sung, Sine Nomine, was composed by Ralph Vaughan Williams. Note how well this compares to all of today's Readings.

++++++++++

For all the saints, who from their labors rest,
who thee by faith before the world confessed,
thy Name, O Jesus, be forever blessed.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

Thou wast their Rock, their Fortress and their Might;
thou, Lord, their Captain in the well fought fight;
thou, in the darkness drear, their one true Light.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

For the apostles' glorious company,
who bearing forth the cross o'er land and sea,
shook all the mighty world, we sing to Thee:
Alleluia, Alleluia!

For the Evangelists, by whose blest word,
like fourfold streams, the garden of the Lord,
is fair and fruitful, be thy Name adored.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

For Martyrs, who with rapture kindled eye,
saw the bright crown descending from the sky,
and seeing, grasped it, thee we glorify.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

O may thy soldiers, faithful, true, and bold,
fight as the saints who nobly fought of old,
and win, with them the victor's crown of gold.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

O blest communion, fellowship divine!
we feebly struggle, they in glory shine;
all are one in thee, for all are thine.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

And when the strife is fierce, the warfare long,
steals on the ear the distant triumph song,
and hearts are brave, again, and arms are strong.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

The golden evening brightens in the west;
soon, soon to faithful warriors comes their rest;
sweet is the calm of paradise the blessed.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

But lo! there breaks a yet more glorious day;
the saints triumphant rise in bright array;
the King of glory passes on his way.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

From earth's wide bounds, from ocean's farthest coast,
through gates of pearl streams in the countless host,
and singing to Father, Son and Holy Ghost:
Alleluia, Alleluia!

++++++++++

All you holy men and women, pray for us.

Where they are, we hope to follow.

**********

Originally posted 11/1/2006.
Re-posted 11/1/2009.
Re-posted 11/1/2011.
Re-posted 11/1/2012.
Re-posted 11/1/2013.
Re-posted 11/1/2014.
Re-posted 11/1/2015.
Re-posted 11/1/2016.
Re-posted 11/1/2017.
Re-posted 11/1/2018.
Re-posted 11/1/2019.