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Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings, 12-13-12, M, St. Lucy, Virgin and Martyr
USCCB.org/RNAB ^ | 12-13--12 | Revised New American Bible

Posted on 12/12/2012 9:15:55 PM PST by Salvation

December 13, 2012

 

Memorial of Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr

 

Reading 1 Is 41:13-20

I am the LORD, your God,
who grasp your right hand;
It is I who say to you, "Fear not,
I will help you."
Fear not, O worm Jacob,
O maggot Israel;
I will help you, says the LORD;
your redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.
I will make of you a threshing sledge,
sharp, new, and double-edged,
To thresh the mountains and crush them,
to make the hills like chaff.
When you winnow them, the wind shall carry them off
and the storm shall scatter them.
But you shall rejoice in the LORD,
and glory in the Holy One of Israel.

The afflicted and the needy seek water in vain,
their tongues are parched with thirst.
I, the LORD, will answer them;
I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.
I will open up rivers on the bare heights,
and fountains in the broad valleys;
I will turn the desert into a marshland,
and the dry ground into springs of water.
I will plant in the desert the cedar,
acacia, myrtle, and olive;
I will set in the wasteland the cypress,
together with the plane tree and the pine,
That all may see and know,
observe and understand,
That the hand of the LORD has done this,
the Holy One of Israel has created it.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 145:1 and 9, 10-11, 12-13ab

R. (8) The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.
I will extol you, O my God and King,
and I will bless your name forever and ever.
The LORD is good to all
and compassionate toward all his works.
R. The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.
Let all your works give you thanks, O LORD,
and let your faithful ones bless you.
Let them discourse of the glory of your Kingdom
and speak of your might.
R. The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.
Let them make known to men your might
and the glorious splendor of your Kingdom.
Your Kingdom is a Kingdom for all ages,
and your dominion endures through all generations.
R. The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.

Gospel Mt 11:11-15

Jesus said to the crowds:
"Amen, I say to you,
among those born of women
there has been none greater than John the Baptist;
yet the least in the Kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
From the days of John the Baptist until now,
the Kingdom of heaven suffers violence,
and the violent are taking it by force.
All the prophets and the law prophesied up to the time of John.
And if you are willing to accept it,
he is Elijah, the one who is to come.
Whoever has ears ought to hear."


TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Prayer; Worship
KEYWORDS: advent; catholic; prayer; saints
For your reading, reflection, faith-sharing, comments, questions, discussion.

1 posted on 12/12/2012 9:16:04 PM PST by Salvation
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To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Alleluia Ping!
 
If you aren’t on this ping list NOW and would like to be, 
please Freepmail me.

2 posted on 12/12/2012 9:22:33 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

3 posted on 12/12/2012 9:23:58 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: Isaiah 41:13-20

God’s special love for his people (continued)


[13] For I, the Lord your God,
hold your right hand;
it is I who say to you, “Fear not,
I will help you.”

[14] Fear not, you worm Jacob,
you men of Israel!
I will help you, says the Lord;
your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.
[15] Behold, I will make of you a threshing sledge,
new, sharp, and having teeth;
you shall thresh the mountains and crush them,
and you shall make the hills like chaff;
[16] You shall winnow them and the wind shall carry them away,
and the tempest shall scatter them.
And you shall rejoice in the Lord;
in the Holy One of Israel you shall glory.

[17] When the poor and needy seek water,
and there is none,
and their tongue is parched with thirst,
I the Lord will answer them,
I the God of Israel will not forsake them.
[18] I will open rivers on the bare heights,
and fountains in the midst of the valleys;
I will make the wilderness a pool of water,
and the dry land springs of water.
[19] I will put in the wilderness the cedar,
the acacia, the myrtle, and the olive;
I will set in the desert the cypress,
the plane and the pine together;
[20] that men may see and know,
may consider and understand together,
that the hand of the Lord has done this,
the Holy One of Israel has created it.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

41:8-20. The reason why God raises up this new deliverer, Cyrus, is his tender
love for his people, who are still suffering the humiliation of exile. This first oracle
of the “Book of Consolation” uses expressions that reveal unsuspected tender-
ness on the Lord’s part: “my servant” is a technical expression describing some-
one chosen for an important mission, as we shall see later in the songs of the
Servant. Here is applies to the entire people, Israel, and not to an individual. The
words “fear not” (vv. 10, 13, 14) call them to trust in the Lord even though the si-
tuation seems hopeless; the same words occur elsewhere in the Bible, addres-
sed to people picked for a dangerous mission – for example, Jacob (Gen 46:3)
or Joshua (Josh 1:9; 8:1; etc.) in the Old Testament, and the Blessed Virgin Ma-
ry, the Mother of Jesus (Lk 1:30) in the New. Other significant titles used here
are “offspring of Abraham, my friend” (v. 8), reminding them of their noble origin,
and “you worm Jacob”, a reference to the sorry state in which the exiles find
themselves.

Even more significant than the names used to describe Israel are the actions
that God takes and the titles given him. These actions are always positive: “to
take from the ends of the earth”, “to call” (v. 9), “to strengthen”, “to help”, “to up-
hold” (v. 10). The titles are titles of affection: “your God” (vv. 10, 13), “your Lord”
and, above all, “your Redeemer” (v. 14), an expression that appears no less than
fourteen times in this part of the book. A redeemer (”goel” in Hebrew) was a per-
son’s next-of-kin, whose duty it was to ensure that family rights were not abused
— whether in respect of property, good name or even life itself (cf. the note on Job
19:25).

God’s special love for Israel, his people, so beautifully expressed by the prophet,
should also be the basis of the hope felt by members of the new people of God:
“Our Lord keeps close watch over the footsteps and progress of his children; that
is, those who have love in their souls walk in his sight, and he stretches out his
hand to steady them in times of difficulty. For that is what Isaiah says: ‘I am your
God, who takes you by the hand and tells you: Do not be afraid, I will help you.’
As well as taking heart from this conviction, we should also have a deep trust in
God and in his help: if we do not spurn the grace he gives us, he will complete
the good work of salvation that he has begun (St Francis de Sales, “Treatise on
the Love of God”, 3, 4).

The last section gives a graphic description of the restoration of Israel, using the
simile of a wilderness that is turned into fertile, leafy terrain (cf. 44:3; 51:3).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


4 posted on 12/12/2012 9:24:55 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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From: Matthew 11:11-15

The Mission of John the Baptist. Jesus’ Reply


(Jesus spoke to the crowds,) [11] “Truly, I say to you, among those born of
women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is
least in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than he. [12] From the days of John
the Baptist until now the Kingdom of Heaven has suffered violence, and men
of violence take it by force. [13] For all the prophets and the law prophesied
until John; [14] and if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah who is to come.
[15] He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

******************************************************************************************
Commentary:

11. With John the Old Testament is brought to a close and we are on the
threshold of the New. The Precursor had the honor of ushering Christ in, ma-
king Him known to men. God had assigned him the exalted mission of prepa-
ring His contemporaries to hear the Gospel. The Baptist’s faithfulness is recog-
nized and proclaimed by Jesus. The praise he received is a reward for his humi-
lity: John, realizing what his role was, had said, “He must increase, but I must
decrease” (John 3:30). St. John the Baptist was the greatest in the sense that
he had received a mission unique and incomparable in the context of the Old
Testament. However, in the Kingdom of Heaven (the New Testament) inaugura-
ted by Christ, the divine gift of grace makes the least of those who faithfully re-
ceive it greater than the greatest in the earlier dispensation. Once the work of
our redemption is accomplished, God’s grace will also be extended to the just
of the Old Alliance. Thus, the greatness of John the Baptist, the Precursor and
the last of the prophets, will be enhanced by the dignity of being made a son
of God.

12. “The Kingdom of Heaven has suffered violence”: once John the Baptist an-
nounces that the Christ is already come, the powers of Hell redouble their des-
perate assault, which continues right through the lifetime of the Church (cf.
Ephesians 6:12). The situation described here seems to be this: the leaders
of the Jewish people, and their blind followers, were waiting for the Kingdom of
God the way people wait for a rightful legacy to come their way; but while they
rest on the laurels of the rights and rewards they think their race entitles them
to, others, the men of violence (literally, attackers) are taking it, as it were, by
force, by fighting the enemies of the soul — the world, the flesh and the devil.

“This violence is not directed against others. It is a violence used to fight your
own weaknesses and miseries, a fortitude, which prevents you from camou-
flaging your own infidelities, a boldness to own up to the faith even when the
environment is hostile” (St. J. Escriva, “Christ Is Passing By”, 82).

This is the attitude of those who fight their passions and do themselves vio-
lence, thereby attaining the Kingdom of Heaven and becoming one with Christ.
As Clement of Alexandria puts it: “The Kingdom of Heaven does not belong to
those who sleep and who indulge all their desires, but to those who fight
against themselves” (”Quis Dives Salvetur”, 21).

14. John the Baptist is Elijah, not in person, but by virtue of his mission (cf.
Matthew 17:10-13; Mark 9:10-12).

******************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


5 posted on 12/12/2012 9:25:49 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Scripture readings taken from the Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd

Readings at Mass


First reading Isaiah 41:13-20 ©
I, the Lord, your God,
I am holding you by the right hand;
I tell you, ‘Do not be afraid,
I will help you.’
Do not be afraid, Jacob, poor worm,
Israel, puny mite.’
I will help you – it is the Lord who speaks –
the Holy One of Israel is your redeemer.
See, I turn you into a threshing-sled,
new, with doubled teeth;
you shall thresh and crush the mountains,
and turn the hills to chaff.
You shall winnow them and the wind will blow them away,
the gale will scatter them.
But you yourself will rejoice in the Lord,
and glory in the Holy One of Israel.
The poor and needy ask for water, and there is none,
their tongue is parched with thirst.
I, the Lord, will answer them,
I, the God of Israel, will not abandon them.
I will make rivers well up on barren heights,
and fountains in the midst of valleys;
turn the wilderness into a lake,
and dry ground into waterspring.
In the wilderness I will put cedar trees,
acacias, myrtles, olives.
In the desert I will plant juniper,
plane tree and cypress side by side;
so that men may see and know,
may all observe and understand
that the hand of the Lord has done this,
that the Holy One of Israel has created it.

Psalm Psalm 144:1,9-13 ©
The Lord is kind and full of compassion, slow to anger, abounding in love.
I will give you glory, O God my king,
  I will bless your name for ever.
How good is the Lord to all,
  compassionate to all his creatures.
The Lord is kind and full of compassion, slow to anger, abounding in love.
All your creatures shall thank you, O Lord,
  and your friends shall repeat their blessing.
They shall speak of the glory of your reign
  and declare your might, O God,
to make known to men your mighty deeds
  and the glorious splendour of your reign.
The Lord is kind and full of compassion, slow to anger, abounding in love.
Yours is an everlasting kingdom;
  your rule lasts from age to age.
The Lord is kind and full of compassion, slow to anger, abounding in love.

Gospel Acclamation
Alleluia, alleluia!
Come, Lord, with your peace
that we may rejoice in your presence with sincerity of heart.
Alleluia!
Or cf.Is45:8
Alleluia, alleluia!
Send victory like a dew, you heavens,
  and let the clouds rain it down.
Let the earth open and bring forth the saviour.
Alleluia!

Gospel Matthew 11:11-15 ©
Jesus spoke to the crowds: ‘I tell you solemnly, of all the children born of women, a greater than John the Baptist has never been seen; yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he is. Since John the Baptist came, up to this present time, the kingdom of heaven has been subjected to violence and the violent are taking it by storm. Because it was towards John that all the prophecies of the prophets and of the Law were leading; and he, if you will believe me, is the Elijah who was to return. If anyone has ears to hear, let him listen!’

6 posted on 12/12/2012 9:29:11 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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7 posted on 12/12/2012 9:30:28 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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  PRAYERS AFTER
HOLY MASS AND COMMUNION

 


Leonine Prayers
    Following are the Prayers after Low Mass which were prescribed by Pope Leo XIII who composed the Prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel, and were reinforced by Pope Pius XI and Pope Pius XII to pray for the conversion of Russia. Below the normal Leonine Prayers is the longer version of the Prayer to St. Michael, composed by His Excellency Pope Leo XIII to defend against The Great Apostasy.
Latin

Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum, benedicta tu in mulieribus et benedictus fructis ventris tui, Jesus. Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

    Salve Regina, Mater misericordiae, vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae. Ad te suspiramus gementes et fientes in hac lacrymarum valle. Eia ergo, Advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. Et Jesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis, post hoc exilium, ostende. O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria. Ora pro nobis, sancta Dei Genitrix. Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

    Oremus. Deus, refugium nostrum et virtus, populum ad te clamantem propitius respice; et intercedente gloriosa, et immaculata Virgine Dei Genitrice Maria, cum beato Joseph, ejus Sponso, ac beatis Apostolis tuis Petro et Paulo, et omnibus Sanctis, quas pro conversione peccatorum, pro libertate et exaltatione sanctae Matris Ecclesiae, preces effundimus, misericors et benignus exaudi. Per eundum Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.

Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio; contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium. Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur: tuque, Princeps militiae Caelestis, satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo, divina virtute in infernum detrude. Amen.

Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.

Vernacular

   Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

   Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope. To thee to we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mouring and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this exile, show unto us the blessed Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

   Let us pray.
O God, our refuge and our strength, look down with mercy upon the people who cry to Thee; and by the intercession of the glorious and immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of Saint Joseph her spouse, of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and of all the saints, in Thy mercy and goodness hear our prayers for the conversion of sinners, and for the liberty and exaltation of the Holy Mother the Church. Through the same Christ Our Lord. Amen.

   Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray: and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.


Complete Prayer to Saint Michael
    The following is the longer version of the vital prayer composed by Pope Leo XIII in 1888 after his startling vision as to the future of the Church. This prayer was dedicated for the Feast of St. Michael 1448 years from the date of the election of the first Leo - Pope Saint Leo the Great. Everyone is familiar with the first prayer below which was mandated by His Holiness as part of the Leonine Prayers after Low Mass. Below are both the short and longer versions of this poignant prayer which should never be forgotten.

    Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray, and do thou, O heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.

O glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil. Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in His own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil. Fight this day the battle of our Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in heaven. That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels. Behold this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage. Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the Name of God and of His Christ, to seize upon, slay, and cast into eternal perdition, souls destined for the crown of eternal glory. That wicked dragon pours out. as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity. These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the Immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on Her most sacred possessions. In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck the sheep may be scattered. Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory. They venerate thee as their protector and patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious powers of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude. Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church. Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations. Amen.

    V: Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.
    R: The Lion of the Tribe of Juda has conquered the root of David.
    V: Let Thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.
    R: As we have hoped in Thee.
    V: O Lord hear my prayer.
    R: And let my cry come unto Thee.

    V: Let us pray. O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon Thy holy Name, and as suppliants, we implore Thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin, immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of our souls. Amen.


Prayer Before the Crucifix

   Look down upon me, O good and gentle Jesus, while before Thy face I humbly kneel, and with burning soul pray and beseech Thee to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope and charity, true contrition for my sins, and a firm purpose of amendment; the while I contemplate with great love and tender pity Thy five most precious wounds, pondering over them within me, calling to mind the words which David Thy prophet said of Thee, my good Jesus: "They have pierced My hands and My feet; they have numbered all My bones."

Indulgence of ten years; a plenary indulgence if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, Raccolta 201)

Anima Christi - Soul of Christ

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O Good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds, hide me.
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee.
From the malignant enemy, defend me.
In the hour of my death, call me.
And bid me come to Thee, that with
Thy saints I may praise Thee for ever and ever. Amen.

Indulgence of 300 days; if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, seven years Raccolta 131)

Prayer for Vocations

   O Lord Jesus Christ, Who didst take to Thyself a body and soul like ours, to teach us the glory of self-sacrifice and service, mercifully deign to instill in other hearts the desire to dedicate their lives to Thee. Give us PRIESTS to stand before Thine Altar and to preach the words of Thy Gospel; BROTHERS to assist the priests and to reproduce in themselves Thy humility; SISTERS to teach the young and nurse the sick and to minister Thy charity to all; LAY PEOPLE to imitate Thee in their homes and families. Amen

8 posted on 12/12/2012 9:31:46 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Prayers for The Religion Forum (Ecumenical)
9 posted on 12/12/2012 9:32:19 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Continue to Pray for Pope Benedict [Ecumenical]
10 posted on 12/12/2012 9:33:10 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Jesus, High Priest
 

We thank you, God our Father, for those who have responded to your call to priestly ministry.

Accept this prayer we offer on their behalf: Fill your priests with the sure knowledge of your love.

Open their hearts to the power and consolation of the Holy Spirit.

Lead them to new depths of union with your Son.

Increase in them profound faith in the Sacraments they celebrate as they nourish, strengthen and heal us.

Lord Jesus Christ, grant that these, your priests, may inspire us to strive for holiness by the power of their example, as men of prayer who ponder your word and follow your will.

O Mary, Mother of Christ and our mother, guard with your maternal care these chosen ones, so dear to the Heart of your Son.

Intercede for our priests, that offering the Sacrifice of your Son, they may be conformed more each day to the image of your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saint John Vianney, universal patron of priests, pray for us and our priests

This icon shows Jesus Christ, our eternal high priest.

The gold pelican over His heart represents self-sacrifice.

The border contains an altar and grapevines, representing the Mass, and icons of Melchizedek and St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney.

Melchizedek: king of righteousness (left icon) was priest and king of Jerusalem.  He blessed Abraham and has been considered an ideal priest-king.

St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney is the patron saint of parish priests.


11 posted on 12/12/2012 9:34:05 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Pray a Rosary each day for our nation.

Pray the Rosary

1.  Sign of the Cross:  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

2.  The Apostles Creed:  I BELIEVE in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell; on the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

3.  The Lord's Prayer:  OUR Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

4. (3) Hail Mary:  HAIL Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and in the hour of our death. Amen. (Three times)

5. Glory Be:  GLORY be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Fatima Prayer: Oh, my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven, especially those in most need of your mercy.

Announce each mystery, then say 1 Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, 1 Glory Be and 1 Fatima prayer.  Repeat the process with each mystery.

End with the Hail Holy Queen:

Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus!

O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Final step -- The Sign of the Cross

 

The Mysteries of the Rosary

By tradition, Catholics meditate on these Mysteries during prayers of the Rosary.
The biblical references follow each of the Mysteries below.


The Luminous Mysteries or Mysteries of Light
(Thursdays) see Rosarium Virginis Mariae
1. Jesus' Baptism in the Jordan (II Corinthians 5:21, Matthew 3:17 and parallels) [Spiritual fruit - Gratitude for the gift of Faith]
2. Jesus' self-manifestation at the wedding of Cana (John 2:1- 12) [Spiritual fruit - Fidelity]
3. Jesus' proclamation of the Kingdom of God, with His call to conversion (Mark 1:15, Mark 2:3-13; Luke 7:47- 48, John 20:22-23) [Spiritual fruit - Desire for Holiness]
4. Jesus' Transfiguration (Luke 9:35 and parallels) [Spiritual fruit - Spiritual Courage]
5. Jesus' institution of the Eucharist, as the sacramental expression of the Paschal Mystery. (Luke 24:13-35 and parallels, 1 Corinthians 11:24-25) [Spiritual fruit - Love of our Eucharistic Lord]

12 posted on 12/12/2012 9:34:52 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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~ PRAYER ~

St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle
 Be our protection against the wickedness
and snares of the devil;
May God rebuke him, we  humbly pray,
 and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
 by the power of God,
 Cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
who prowl through the world seeking the ruin of souls.
 Amen
+

13 posted on 12/12/2012 9:36:44 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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A Prayer for our Free Nation Under God
God Save Our Country web site (prayer warriors)
Prayer Chain Request for the United States of America
Pray for Nancy Pelosi
Prayer and fasting will help defeat health care reform (Freeper Prayer Thread)
Prayer Campaign Started to Convert Pro-Abortion Catholic Politicians to Pro-Life
[Catholic Caucus] One Million Rosaries
Non-stop Rosary vigil to defeat ObamaCare

From an Obama bumper sticker on a car:

"Pray for Obama.  Psalm 109:8"

   

PLEASE JOIN US -

Evening Prayer
Someone has said that if people really understood the full extent of the power we have available through prayer, we might be speechless.
Did you know that during WWII there was an advisor to Churchill who organized a group of people who dropped what they were doing every day at a prescribed hour for one minute to collectively pray for the safety of England, its people and peace?  


There is now a group of people organizing the same thing here in America. If you would like to participate: Every evening at 9:00 PM Eastern Time (8:00 PM Central) (7:00 PM Mountain) (6:00 PM Pacific), stop whatever you are doing and spend one minute praying for the safety of the United States, our troops, our citizens, and for a return to a Godly nation. If you know anyone else who would like to participate, please pass this along. Our prayers are the most powerful asset we have.    Please forward this to your praying friends.


14 posted on 12/12/2012 9:37:55 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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immaculate_conception.jpg (155743 bytes)
 
December Devotion: The Immaculate Conception

Since the 16th century Catholic piety has assigned entire months to special devotions. The month of December is traditionally dedicated to the Immaculate Conception. The Blessed Virgin Mary, in the first moment of her conception, by a singular privilege of Almighty God, and in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, our Savior and hers, was preserved from all stain of original sin. This age-old belief of the Church was defined by Pope Pius IX in 1854 as an article of revealed truth.

Mary was in need of redemption and she was indeed redeemed by the Precious Blood of Jesus Christ. The manner of Mary's redemption, however, was unique. Instead of being freed from original sin after having contracted it, she was preserved from contracting it. This was a most fitting favor for the Mother of the Redeemer.

INVOCATION
O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.

The Immaculate Conception from the Catechism of the Catholic Church

To become the mother of the Savior, Mary “was enriched by God with gifts appropriate to such a role.”  The angel Gabriel at the moment of the annunciation salutes her as “full of grace”. In fact, in order for Mary to be able to give the free assent of her faith to the announcement of her vocation, it was necessary that she be wholly borne by God’s grace.

Through the centuries the Church has become ever more aware that Mary, “full of grace” through God, was redeemed from the moment of her conception. That is what the dogma of the Immaculate Conception confesses, as Pope Pius IX proclaimed in 1854:

The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God and by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin.

The “splendor of an entirely unique holiness” by which Mary is “enriched from the first instant of her conception” comes wholly from Christ: she is “redeemed, in a more exalted fashion, by reason of the merits of her Son”. The Father blessed Mary more than any other created person “in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places” and chose her “in Christ before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless before him in love”.

The Fathers of the Eastern tradition call the Mother of God “the All-Holy” (Panagia), and celebrate her as “free from any stain of sin, as though fashioned by the Holy Spirit and formed as a new creature”.  By the grace of God Mary remained free of every personal sin her whole life long.

 

PRAYER OF POPE PIUS XII
This prayer, dedicated to Mary Immaculate, was composed by the Pope for the Marian Year (December 8, 1953-December 8, 1954), which was proclaimed to mark the centenary of the definition of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.

Enraptured by the splendor of your heavenly beauty, and impelled by the anxieties of the world, we cast ourselves into your arms, 0 Immacuate Mother of Jesus and our Mother, Mary, confident of finding in your most loving heart appeasement of our ardent desires, and a safe harbor from the tempests which beset us on every side.

Though degraded by our faults and overwhelmed by infinite misery, we admire and praise the peerless richness of sublime gifts with which God has filled you, above every other mere creature, from the first moment of your conception until the day on which, after your assumption into heaven, He crowned you Queen of the Universe.

O crystal fountain of faith, bathe our minds with the eternal truths! O fragrant Lily of all holiness, captivate our hearts with your heavenly perfume! 0 Conqueress of evil and death, inspire in us a deep horror of sin, which makes the soul detestable to God and a slave of hell!

O well-beloved of God, hear the ardent cry which rises up from every heart. Bend tenderly over our aching wounds. Convert the wicked, dry the tears of the afflicted and oppressed, comfort the poor and humble, quench hatreds, sweeten harshness, safeguard the flower of purity in youth, protect the holy Church, make all men feel the attraction of Christian goodness. In your name, resounding harmoniously in heaven, may they recognize that they are brothers, and that the nations are members of one family, upon which may there shine forth the sun of a universal and sincere peace.

Receive, O most sweet Mother, our humble supplications, and above all obtain for us that, one day, happy with you, we may repeat before your throne that hymn which today is sung on earth around your altars: You are all-beautiful, O Mary! You are the glory, you are the joy, you are the honor of our people! Amen.

Prayer Source: Prayer Book, The by Reverend John P. O'Connell, M.A., S.T.D. and Jex Martin, M.A., The Catholic Press, Inc., Chicago, Illinois, 1954


Litany of the Blessed Virgin

Lord, have mercy on us
Christ, have mercy on us
Lord, have mercy on us
Christ, hear us
Christ, graciously hear us

God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us God the Son, Redeemer of the World, have mercy on us God the Holy Spirit, ...
Holy Trinity, one God, ...

Holy Mary, pray for us
Holy Mother of God, pray for us
Holy Virgin of virgins, ...
Mother of Christ, ...
Mother of Divine Grace, ...
Mother most pure, ...
Mother most chaste, ...
Mother inviolate, ...
Mother undefiled, ...
Mother most amiable, ...
Mother most admirable, ...
Mother of good counsel, ...
Mother of our Creator, ...
Mother of our Saviour, ...
Virgin most prudent, ...
Virgin most venerable, ...
Virgin most renowned, ...
Virgin most powerful, ...
Virgin most merciful, ...
Virgin most faithful, ...
Mirror of justice, ...
Seat of wisdom, ...
Cause of our joy, ...
Spiritual vessel, ...
Vessel of honour, ...
Singular vessel of devotion, ...
Mystical rose, ...
Tower of David, ...
Tower of ivory, ...
House of gold, ...
Ark of the covenant, ...
Gate of heaven, ...
Morning star, ...
Health of the sick, ...
Refuge of sinners, ...
Comforter of the afflicted, ...
Help of Christians, ...
Queen of Angels, ...
Queen of Patriarchs, ...
Queen of Prophets, ...
Queen of Apostles, ...
Queen of Martyrs, ...
Queen of Confessors, ...
Queen of Virgins, ...
Queen of all Saints, ...
Queen conceived without original sin, ...
Queen assumed into heaven, ...
Queen of the most holy Rosary, ...
Queen of Peace, ...

Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord, Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord, Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

Grant we beseech Thee, O Lord God, 
that we, Thy servants,  may enjoy perpetual health of mind and body:  and, by the glorious intercession of the blessed Mary, ever Virgin,  be delivered from present sorrow and enjoy eternal gladness. 
Through Christ, our Lord. 

Amen.


 

Why Catholics Believe in the Immaculate Conception

IMMACULATE CONCEPTION NOVENA [Prayer]
Essays for Lent: The Immaculate Conception
"I Am The Immaculate Conception"
The Corona of the Immaculate Conception [Catholic Caucus]
Catholic Caucus: Immaculate Conception Novena Prayer Thread
New chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Lebanon at National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception
Feast of the The Conception by St. Anna of the Most Holy Theotokos December 9th
On the Immaculate Conception
Immaculate Mary: "Trust Jesus, he will save you" (Catholic Caucus)
I Love that Woman! My Unworthy Reflections on The Immaculate Conception

LAND OF MARY IMMACULATE [Ecumenical]
Mary as the New Eve - St. Irenaeus
Mary - the Immaculate Ark of the New Covenant [Catholic Caucus]
THE LIFE OF BLESSED JOHN DUNS SCOTUS, Defender of the Immaculate Conception [Catholic Caucus]
An Unfathomable Marian Richness [Catholic Caucus]
Catholic Biblical Apologetics: The Immaculate Conception of Mary
History of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception - December 8 [Catholic Caucus]
Preserved Sinless from the Moment of Humanity (Dogma of the Immaculate Conception) [Catholic Caucus]
I Love that Woman! My Unworthy Reflections on The Immaculate Conception [Catholic Caucus]
Father Marquette's Devotion to the Immaculate Conception (Catholic Caucus)

St. John Neumann and the Doctrine of the Immaculate Conception (Catholic Caucus)
Our Jewish Roots: The Immaculate Conception [Ecumenical]
And It Was Night. The Real Story of Original Sin [Ecumenical]
I Love that Woman! My Unworthy Reflections on The Immaculate Conception
Mary Immaculate: Patroness of the United States [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
Catholic/Orthodox Caucus: The Immaculate Conception: A Marvelous Theme - Novena Starts Nov. 30
THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION - Satan's Mighty Foe(Catholic Caucus)
Ark of the new covenant
Historian reveals how Pius IX decided to proclaim dogma of Immaculate Conception (Catholic Caucus)
The Immaculate Vs. the Proud

Immaculate Conception Novena -- starts November 30th [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
Blessed John Duns Scotus Champion Of Mary's Immaculate Conception (CATHOLIC CAUCUS)
The Crusade of Mary Immaculate - St. Maximilian Kolbe (Catholic Caucus)
The Early Church Fathers on the Immaculate Conception - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
Three Reasons the Church’s Enemies Hate The Immaculate Conception
Her saving grace - the origins of the Immaculate Conception
Mary Is a Model Who Works With Us and in Us
U.S. Catholic bishops to renew consecration of nation to Immaculate Conception
Catholic Meditation: To the Immaculate Conception on this Election Day
Saint Bernadette of Lourdes (Sermon from 1934)

My visit to the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception
On Solemnity of Immaculate Conception - "In Mary Shines the Eternal Goodness of the Creator"
The Belief of Catholics concerning the Blessed Virgin: the Second Eve
Pope makes pilgrimage to Mary statue in Rome, marking the feast of the Immaculate Conception
Pope: Mary the Immaculate Conception... (text of BXVI speech)
"Tota pulchra es, Maria, et macula originalis non est in te" (The Immaculate Conception)
The Immaculate Conception — Essential to the Faith
"Who Are You, Immaculate Conception?"
TURKEY Ephesus: The Feast of the Immaculate Conception at Mary’s House
Coming Dec 8th. Feast of the "Immaculate Conception"

Why the Immaculate Conception?
Catholic Encyclopedia: Immaculate Conception (The Doctrine and Its Roots)
The Immaculate Conception of Our Lady December 8
Mary's Immaculate Conception: A Memorable Anniversary
Ineffabilis Deus: 8 December 1854 (Dogma of the Immaculate Conception)
Why do we believe in the Immaculate Conception?
John Paul II goes to Lourdes; reflections on the Immaculate Conception
Your Praises We Sing--on the Dogma of the Proclamation of the Immaculate Conception, Dec. 8th
Eastern Christianity and the Immaculate Conception (Q&A From EWTN)
Memorandum on the Immaculate Conception [Newman]

15 posted on 12/12/2012 9:42:26 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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December 2012

Pope's intentions

General Intention: That migrants throughout the world may be welcomed with generosity and authentic love, especially by Christian communities.

Missionary Intention: Christ, light for all humanity. That Christ may reveal himself to all humanity with the light that shines forth from Bethlehem and is reflected in the face of his Church.


16 posted on 12/12/2012 9:43:34 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Thursday, December 13, 2012
St. Lucy, Virgin, Martyr (Memorial)
First Reading:
Psalm:
Gospel:
Isaiah 41:13-20
Psalm 145:1, 9-13
Matthew 11:11-15

This very moment I may, if I desire, become the friend of God.

-- St. Augustine


17 posted on 12/12/2012 9:47:04 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Just A Minute Just A Minute (Listen)
Some of EWTN's most popular hosts and guests in a collection of one minute inspirational messages. A different message each time you click.

18 posted on 12/12/2012 9:47:55 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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The Angelus 

The Angel of the Lord declared to Mary: 
And she conceived of the Holy Spirit. 

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen. 

Behold the handmaid of the Lord: Be it done unto me according to Thy word. 

Hail Mary . . . 

And the Word was made Flesh: And dwelt among us. 

Hail Mary . . . 


Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. 

Let us pray: 

Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts; that we, to whom the incarnation of Christ, Thy Son, was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection, through the same Christ Our Lord.

Amen. 


19 posted on 12/12/2012 9:49:02 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr

Saint Lucy,
Virgin and Martyr
Memorial
December 13th

 

Saint Lucy from the Prayer Book of Michelino da Besozzo (Milan, early 15th century, tempera, ink and gold leaf on parchment.) Pierpont Morgan Library, New York

Collect and Readings - Prayer to St Lucy - Story of St. Lucy-Sweden's custom -Recipes for Celebration

 

Collect:
May the glorious intercession
of the Virgin and Martyr Saint Lucy
give us new heart, we pray, O Lord,
so that we may celebrate her heavenly birthday
in this present age
and so behold things eternal.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

First Reading: 2 Corinthians 10:17 - 11:2
"Let him who boasts, boast of the Lord." For it is not the man who commends himself that is accepted, but the man whom the Lord commends. I wish you would bear with me in a little foolishness. Do bear with me! I feel a divine jealousy for you, for I betrothed you to Christ to present you as a pure bride to her one husband.

Gospel Reading: Matthew 25: 1-13
"Then the kingdom of heaven shall be compared to ten maidens who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them; but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. But at midnight there was a cry, 'Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.' Then all those maidens rose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' But the wise replied, 'Perhaps there will not be enough for us and for you; go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.' And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast; and the door was shut. Afterward the other maidens came also, saying, 'Lord, lord, open to us.' But he replied, 'Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.' Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour."

 

Prayer to Saint Lucy
Hear us, O God, our salvation, that, as we rejoice in keeping the festival of Blessed Lucy, thy virgin and martyr, so we may profit by the tender devotion we gain through her example. Through our Lord. Amen.

Story of Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr
According to the traditional story, she was born to rich and noble parents about 283. Her father died when she was young. Fifty-two years prior to Saint Lucy, Saint Agatha, virgin and martyr was executed. Saint Agatha's fame attracted many visitors to her relics at Catania. Lucy and her mother, Eutychia, made the pilgrimage, where Eutychia was healed of a hemorrhage. Lucy persuaded Eutychia to distribute a great part of their riches among the poor. This angered the young man to whom she was betrothed. He reported her as a Christian. She was executed by with sword in the year 303. She was first condemned to suffer the shame of prostitution but in the strength of God she stood unmovable and could not be dragged away to the place of shame. God also saved her from being set on fire. According to some stories, Saint Lucy's eyes were plucked out during her torture and God miraculously restored her sight. Her feast day is celebrated especially in Sweden, where elements of light and sight, as well as the martyr's crown, are combined in a beautiful family custom appropriate for Advent celebration.

Sweden's Customs
The eldest daughter of the household, wearing a white dress with a sash of crimson and a crown of branches set with lighted candles, wakes all the members of the household and serves them special cake and coffee. While it may not be practical to light a crown of candles, the family can enjoy this custom of a special treat prepared by the eldest daughter of the family (with help from mother, if necessary). As a substitute for the flaming crown, the coffee cake can be prepared in the shape of a crown and set with candles.

Recipes for a Saint Lucy's celebration
Recipes from A Continual Feast by Evelyn Birge Vitz, originally published by Harper & Row in 1995, now available in paperback from Ignatius Press (see links page).


Saint Lucy's Crown
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
1 cup lukewarm milk
2 packages dry yeast
1/4 cup of warm water (100-110 degrees F)
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sweet butter
1 egg, lightly beaten
4 cups flour
Grated rind of 1 lemon
4-5 tablespoons blanched almonds, grated or finely chopped
4-5 tablespoons chopped candied citron (optional)
Confectioners' Sugar Glaze (see recipe below)
Tapers or thin candles (optional)

Crush the saffron to a fine powder, and steep it in a tablespoon or two of the lukewarm milk for about 10 minutes. In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm water. Stir in 1 tablespoon of the sugar. Set the mixture aside for 5 to 10 minutes, or until frothy.

Scald the remaining milk. Stir in the rest of the sugar, and the salt and butter. Stir until the butter is melted. Let cool to lukewarm. Stir into the yeast mixture. Add the saffron milk and lightly beaten egg. Stir in the flour gradually, mixing well. Add the lemon rind, almonds, and citron, if you like.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for about 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. While you are kneading, add more flour if the dough is sticky.

Place the dough in a greased bowl, turning to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a draft-free spot until doubled in bulk, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Punch the dough down. Cut off one-third to make the top braid; set aside. Divide the remaining dough into three parts. Roll each part into a rope about 25 inches long. Place the three ropes close together on a buttered baking sheet and braid them together. (Try starting from the middle; you may find it easier.) Form the braid into a circle, pinching the ends to seal.

Divide the reserved dough into three parts. Roll each part into a rope about 24 inches long. Proceed as above: Place the three ropes close together on a buttered baking sheet and braid them together. Form the braid into a circle, pinching the ends to seal.

Cover both braids lightly and let the bread rise for 30-45 minutes, or until almost doubled in bulk.

Bake at 400 degree F for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 degrees F and bake for about 40 minutes longer, or until the two braided rings are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.

Place the smaller braid on top of the larger. Dizzle over it the Confectioners' Sugar Glaze. Optional: Stick thin tapers into the crown and light them. There is no fixed number of tapers; why not put in one for each member of your family?

Yield 1 large double braided Saint Lucy's Crown

Variations:
You can elimate the saffron, and flavor the crown with 2 teaspoons ground cardamom; add it along with the salt. For a smaller crown, you can just halve this recipe; the baking time will be a little shorter.

Confectioners' Sugar Glaze
2-3 teaspoons lemon juice or milk or water
1/2-1 cup confectioner's sugar

Stir the lemon juice into the confectioners' sugar; mix well. Add more sugar or lemon juice as needed to produce a proper consistency for dizzling.


Swedish Saint Lucy Ginger Snaps (Luciapepperkakor)
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
1 1/2 cups dark or light brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
2 teaspoons ground ginger
Grated rind of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 cup heavy cream
6-7 cups flour
Icing (recipe below)

Heat the corn syrup in a saucepan. Stir in the sugar, molasses, ginger, lemon rind, and baking soda.

In a large bowl, whip the cream until almost stiff.

Stir the syrup mixture gradually into the cream. Beat at low speed with an electric mixer for 4 to 5 minutes (about twice as long if you are beating by hand with a spoon or whisk). Add 4 cups of the flour, mixing well with a spoon. Then gradually add enough of the remaining flour to make a soft, pliable dough. Knead for 2 or 3 minutes.

Wrap the dough well in well in waxed paper or plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. (If you are in a hurry, you can start the chilling process in the freezer. Leave the dough in the freezer for about 20 minutes.)

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out about 1/4 inch thick. Cut with fancy cutters, such as animals and people, heart and flowers. Try making some pretty young girls -- perhaps with crowns -- like Saint Lucy. If possible, do creche scenes or other Christmas motifs, such as stars and angels. (Even in our baking we can try to emphasize what matters about Christmas -- the star, the baby, the angels singing -- and play down Santa Claus and full stockings.)

Place the cookies on a lightly buttered cookie sheet. Bake at 275 degrees F for about 12 minutes or until the cookies are golden brown.

Ice when cold.

Yield: about 4 dozen cookies

Icing
Beat the white of an egg until frothy. Add 1 cup confectioners' sugar (and, optional, 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice). If the icing is too thick, add more lemon juice; too thin, more sugar. You can make several batches, adding food coloring as you wish. An even quicker icing is just a few drops of water mixed with confectioners' sugar and food coloring.


20 posted on 12/13/2012 8:26:25 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Lucy and Odilia: Two Saints for Sore Eyes [Catholic Caucus]
Saint Lucy (Santa Lucia)
Saint Lucy [Martyr]
21 posted on 12/13/2012 8:27:35 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Information:
St. Lucy
Feast Day: December 13
Born: 284, Syracuse
Died: 304, Syracuse
Major Shrine: San Geremia, Venice
Patron of: blind; martyrs; epidemics; salesmen, throat infections



22 posted on 12/13/2012 8:28:16 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Interactive Saints for Kids

St. Lucy

St. Lucy
Feast Day: December 13
Born: 283 :: Died: 304

This beloved saint was born and lived in Syracuse, Sicily. Lucy was the daughter of very noble and rich parents. Her father died when she was very young.

Young Lucy secretly promised Jesus that she would never marry so that she could be his alone. She was a lovely girl, with beautiful eyes. More than one young noble set his heart on her.

Her mother Eutychia, begged her to marry a young pagan named Paschasius, whom she had chosen for Lucy. But for three years Lucy would not agree and was able to hold it off.

Lucy then thought of a plan to win her mother over. Her mother suffered from hemorrhages and Lucy convinced her to go to the shrine of St. Agatha and pray for her recovery.

When God heard their prayers and cured her mother, Lucy told her of her promise to be Christ's bride. Her grateful mother finally allowed Lucy to follow her vocation.

Paschasius was furious at losing his bride to be. In his bitter anger, he accused her of being a Christian. He threatened her with the frightening torture of being blinded.

But Lucy was even willing to lose both her eyes rather than belong to anyone but Jesus. And that is just what happened. Many statues show St. Lucy holding her lovely eyes in the palm of her hand.

Jesus rewarded Lucy for her heroic love. He worked a miracle and gave her back her eyes, more beautiful than ever.

The pagan judge tried to send the saint to a house of sinful women. He hoped that Lucy might be tempted to give up Christ. But when they tried to carry her away, God made her body so heavy that they could not move her even with a team of oxen.

Then she was surrounded with bundles of wood which they set on fire, but the fire went out. In the end, she was stabbed and became a martyr for Jesus in the year 304.

23 posted on 12/13/2012 8:32:30 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
 
Catholic
Almanac:

Thursday, December 13

Liturgical Color: Red


Today is the Memorial of St. Lucy, virgin and martyr. St. Lucy was blinded as she was tortured for her faith in 304 A.D. Her eyesight was miraculously restored and she is honored as the patron saint of those with eye trouble.


24 posted on 12/13/2012 4:23:57 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Catholic Culture

Daily Readings for: December 13, 2012
(Readings on USCCB website)

Collect: May the glorious intercession of the Virgin and Martyr Saint Lucy give us new heart, we pray, O Lord, so that we may celebrate her heavenly birthday in this present age and so behold things eternal. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Advent: December 13th

Memorial of St. Lucy, virgin and martyr

Old Calendar: St. Lucy

St. Lucy (283-304) was born in Syracuse, Sicily, where she also died. She was of a noble Greek family, and was brought up as a Christian by her mother, who was miraculously cured at the shrine of St. Agatha in Catania. Lucy made a vow of virginity and distributed her wealth to the poor. This generosity stirred the wrath of the unworthy youth to whom she had been unwillingly betrothed and who denounced her to Paschasius, the governor of Sicily. When it was decided to violate her virginity in a place of shame, Lucy, with the help of the Holy Spirit, stood immovable. A fire was then built around her, but again God protected her. She was finally put to death by the sword. Her name appears in the second list in the Canon.

Jesse Tree ~ Jesse



St. Lucy
Today's feast can easily be harmonized with Advent themes. The very name Lucy pulsates with light, a living symbol amid the season's darkness (the days are now the shortest of the year). As a wise virgin Lucy advances with a burning lamp to meet the Bridegroom. She typifies the Church and the soul now preparing their bridal robes for a Christmas marriage.

That the famous Sicilian martyr really lived may be deduced from the great popular veneration accorded her since most ancient times. The Acts detailing her sufferings, however, merit little credence. According to these she made a pilgrimage to Catonia with her mother, who suffered from hemorrhage, to venerate the body of St. Agatha. After praying devoutly at the tomb, Agatha appeared to her in a dream and consoled her: "O virgin Lucy, why do you ask of me what you yourself can procure for your mother? For your faith too has come to her aid and therefore she has been cured. By your virginity you have indeed prepared for God a lovely dwelling." And her mother actually was healed.

Immediately Lucy asked permission to remain a virgin and to distribute her future dowry among Christ's poor. Child and mother returned to their native city of Syracuse, and Lucy proceeded to distribute the full proceeds from the sale of her property among the poor. When a young man, to whom Lucy's parents had promised the virgin's hand against her will, had heard of the development, he reported her to the city prefect as a Christian. "Your words will be silenced," the prefect said to her, "when the storm of blows falls upon you!" The virgin: "To God's servants the right words will not be wanting, for the Holy Spirit speaks in us." "Yes," she continued, "all who live piously and chastely are temples of the Holy Spirit." "Then," he replied, "I shall order you put with prostitutes and the Holy Spirit will depart from you." Lucy: "If I am dishonored against my will, my chastity will secure for me a double crown of victory."

Aflame with anger, the judge imposed the threatened order. But God made the virgin solidly firm in her place and no force could move her. "With such might did the Holy Spirit hold her firm that the virgin of Christ remained immovable." Thereupon they poured heated pitch and resin over her: "I have begged my Lord Jesus Christ that this fire have no power over me. And in testimony of Him I have asked a postponement of my death." When she had endured all this without the least injury, they pierced her throat with a sword. Thus she victoriously ended her martyrdom.

—Excerpted from The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch.

Patron: against hemorraghes; authors; blind people; blindness; cutlers; dysentery; eye disease; eye problems; glaziers; hemorraghes; laborers; martyrs; peasants; Perugia, Italy; saddlers; salesmen; stained glass workers; Syracuse, Sicily; throat infections; writers.

Symbols: Lamp; dagger; three crowns; cauldron; two oxen; stake and fagots; cup; sword through his neck; poniard; ropes; eye held in pincers; awl; cord; eyes on a dish or book; swords.
Often Portrayed As: Woman hitched to a yoke of oxen; woman in the company of Saint Agatha, Saint Agnes of Rome, Barbara, Catherine of Alexandria, and Saint Thecla; woman kneeling before the tomb of Saint Agatha.

Things to Do:


25 posted on 12/13/2012 4:36:14 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
The Word Among Us

Meditation: Matthew 11:11-15

Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr

“The kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent are taking it by force.” (Matthew 11:12)

Because we are all created in God’s image, the personality he has given each of us manifests his char­acter in a unique, irreplaceable way. A fearless leader like Moses reveals how God goes before his people to lead them to freedom. A wise pas­tor like St. Francis de Sales shows how well our heavenly Father under­stands our weaknesses. Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta demon­strates God’s compassion for the least of his children, and Dorothy Day shows us God’s passion for jus­tice and peace.

Even a “violent” prophet like John the Baptist has something to teach us about God. Perhaps it would have been better for John had he not been so outspo­ken and uncompromising. Having once confronted Herod on his sin­ful relationship with Herodias, John might have saved his skin by soft­ening his message a bit. But that’s not who John was. He called it as he saw it, and he didn’t let any­thing stand in his way, not even the threat of death. Toughened by a life of austerity, he was single-minded in his determination to prepare all Israel—even Herod—for the com­ing kingdom of God.

Do you see Jesus only as a gen­tle soul who embraces everyone, regardless of their beliefs and life­style? Of course there is truth in this image. God’s love is unconditional. He treasures every person he cre­ated and longs for everyone to be with him forever. But at the same time, Jesus cannot abide the sin that distorts his image in us and sepa­rates us from him. He will go to any lengths to deal with that sin, includ­ing becoming a man, living among us, and suffering death for our sake. As his awestruck friends once observed, Jesus was consumed with zeal for the purity of God’s kingdom and his people (John 2:17).

Today is a good day to ask God to shed his light on the greatest obstacle you are raising to the vic­tory of his love in you. Once you see what that obstacle is, let noth­ing stop you from bringing it down! Let the violence of Jesus’ passionate love for you give you the strength, determination, and faith you need to see victory.

“Jesus, you held nothing back in loving me. By your Spirit, help me overcome everything that separates me from you.”

Isaiah 41:13-20; Psalm 145:1, 9-13


26 posted on 12/13/2012 5:23:07 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
 
Marriage = One Man and One Woman
Til' Death Do Us Part

Daily Marriage Tip for December 13, 2012:

Does your spouse get left overs? Not for dinner but your left over energy? When you meet at the end of your work day (whether at an office or home) find a way to pause and refresh your tired spirit. Fifteen minutes can often do it (a nap, prayer, shower…).


27 posted on 12/13/2012 5:30:21 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
Matthew
  English: Douay-Rheims Latin: Vulgata Clementina Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
  Matthew 11
11 Amen I say to you, there hath not risen among them that are born of women a greater than John the Baptist: yet he that is the lesser in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. Amen dico vobis, non surrexit inter natos mulierum major Joanne Baptista : qui autem minor est in regno cælorum, major est illo. αμην λεγω υμιν ουκ εγηγερται εν γεννητοις γυναικων μειζων ιωαννου του βαπτιστου ο δε μικροτερος εν τη βασιλεια των ουρανων μειζων αυτου εστιν
12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent bear it away. A diebus autem Joannis Baptistæ usque nunc, regnum cælorum vim patitur, et violenti rapiunt illud. απο δε των ημερων ιωαννου του βαπτιστου εως αρτι η βασιλεια των ουρανων βιαζεται και βιασται αρπαζουσιν αυτην
13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John: Omnes enim prophetæ et lex usque ad Joannem prophetaverunt : παντες γαρ οι προφηται και ο νομος εως ιωαννου προεφητευσαν
14 And if you will receive it, he is Elias that is to come. et si vultis recipere, ipse est Elias, qui venturus est. και ει θελετε δεξασθαι αυτος εστιν ηλιας ο μελλων ερχεσθαι
15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. Qui habet aures audiendi, audiat. ο εχων ωτα ακουειν ακουετω

28 posted on 12/13/2012 6:20:56 PM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex
11. Verily I say to you, Among them that are born of women there had not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

CHRYS; Having first delivered the Prophet's testimony in praise of John, He rested not there; but added His own decision respecting him, saying, Among them that are born of women there has not arisen a greater than John the Baptist.

RABAN; As much as to say; What need to recount one by one the praises of John the Baptist; I say verily to you, Among them that are born of women &c. He says women, not virgins. If the same word mulier, which denotes a married person, is any where in the Gospels applied to Mary, it should be known that the translator has there used 'mulier' for 'femina'; as in that, Woman, behold your son!

JEROME; He is then set before all those that are born in wedlock, and not before Him who was born of the Virgin and the Holy Spirit; yet these words, there has not arisen a greater than John the Baptist, do not imply that John is to be set above the Prophets and Patriarchs and all others, but only makes him equal to the rest; for it does not follow that because others are not greater than him, that therefore he is greater than others.

PSEUDO-CHRYS; But seeing that righteousness has so great deepness that none can be perfect therein but God only, I suppose that all the saints tried by the keenness of the divine judgment, rank in a fixed order, some lower, some before other. Whence we understand that He that has none greater than Himself, is greater than all.

CHRYS; That the abundance of this praise might not beget a wrong inclination in the Jews to set John above Christ, he corrects this, saying, He that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

AUG; The heretic argues from this verse to prove, that since John did not belong to the kingdom of heaven, therefore much less did the other Prophets of that people, than whom John is greater. But these words of the Lord may be understood in two ways. Either the kingdom of heaven is something which we have not yet received, that, namely, of which He speaks, Come, you blessed of my Father, receive the kingdom, because they in it are Angels, therefore the least among them is greater than a righteous man who has a corruptible body. Or if we must understand the kingdom of heaven of the Church, whose children are all the righteous men from the beginning of the world until now, then the Lord speaks this of Himself, who was after John in the time of His birth, but greater in respect of His divine nature and supreme power. According then to the first interpretation it will be pointed, He who is least in the kingdom of heaven, is greater than he; according to the second, He who is less than he, is in the kingdom of heaven greater than he.

CHRYS; The kingdom of heaven, that is, in the spiritual; world and all relating thereto. But some say that Christ spoke this of the Apostles.

JEROME; We understand it simply, that every saint who is ready with the Lord is greater than he who yet stands in the battle; for it is one thing to have gained the crown of victory, another to be yet fighting in the field.

12. And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.
13. For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
14. And if you will receive it, this is Elias, which was to come.
15. He that has ears to hear, let him hear.

GLOSS: That what He had last said should not lead any to suppose that John was an alien from the kingdom of heaven, He corrects this by adding, From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.

GREG; By the kingdom of heaven is meant the heavenly throne, whither when sinners defiled with any evil deed return in penitence, and amend themselves, they enter as sinners into the place of another, and take by violence the kingdom of heaven.

JEROME; Because John the Baptist was the first who preached repentance to the people, saying, Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand: rightly therefore from that day forth it may be said, that the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force. For great indeed is the violence, when we who are born of earth, seek an abode in heaven, and obtain by excellence what we have not by nature.

HILARY; Otherwise; The Lord bade His Apostles go to the lost sheep of Israel, but all their preaching conveyed profit to the publicans and sinners. Therefore the kingdom suffers violence, and the violent take it by force, for the glory of Israel, due to the Fathers, foretold by the Prophets, offered by Christ, is entered and held by force by the might of the Gentiles.

CHRYS; Or; All who come thereto with haste take by force the kingdom of God through the faith of Christ; whence He says, from the days of John until now, and thus He brings them in haste to His faith, and at the same time adds support to those things which had been spoken by John. For if all things were fulfilled until John, then is Jesus He that should come; wherefore He adds, All the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John.

JEROME; Not that He cuts off all Prophets after John; for we read in the Acts of the Apostles that Agabus prophesied, and also four virgins, daughters of Philip; but He means that the Law and the Prophets whom we have written, whatever they have prophesied, they have prophesied of the Lord, That He says, Prophesied until John, shows that this was now the time of Christ's coming; and that whom they had foretold should come, Him John showed to be already come.

CHRYS; Then He adds another token of him, saying, And if you will receive it, this is Elias who was to come. The Lord speaks in Malachias, I will send you Elias the Tishbite; and of the same again, Behold, I send my messenger before your face.

JEROME; John then is said to be Elias, not according to the foolish philosophers, and certain heretics who bring forward their metempsychosis, or passing of the soul from one body to another; but because (as it is in another passage of the Gospel) he came in the spirit and power of Elias, and had the same grace and measure of the Holy Spirit. But in austerity of life, and fortitude of spirit, Elias and John were alike; they both dwelt in the desert, both were girded with a girdle of skins; because he reproved Ahab and Jezebel for their wickedness, Elias was compelled to fly; because he condemned the unlawful union of Herod and Herodias, John is beheaded.

CHRYS; If you will receive it, showing their freedom, and requiring of them a willing mind. John the Baptist is Elias, and Elias is John because both were forerunners of Christ.

JEROME; That He says, This is Elias, is figurative, and needs to be explained as what follows, shows; He that has ears to hear, let him hear.

REMIG; As much as to say, Who so has ears of the heart to hear, that is, to understand, let him understand: for He did not say that John was Elias in person, but in the Spirit.

Catena Aurea Matthew 11
29 posted on 12/13/2012 6:21:46 PM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex


John the Baptist the Forerunner and Great Prophet

30 posted on 12/13/2012 6:22:31 PM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: All
Regnum Christi

A Kingdom for the Violent?
| SPIRITUAL LIFE | SPIRITUALITY
Memorial of Saint Lucy, virgin and martyr



Father Walter Schu, LC

Matthew 11:11-15

Jesus said to the crowds: “Amen, I say to you, among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the Kingdom of heaven is greater than he. From the days of John the Baptist until now, the Kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent are taking it by force. All the prophets and the law prophesied up to the time of John. And if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah, the one who is to come. Whoever has ears ought to hear.”

Introductory Prayer: Lord, I believe in your presence here with me as I humbly kneel before you to do you homage and praise you. I long for the reward you have promised to those who love you with undivided hearts. My heart is not at peace until it rests in you.

Petition: Lord, help me to long for and strive for the inexpressible joy of heaven.

1. None Greater Than John: In a phrase tinged with admiration, Christ pays St. John the Baptist the highest of compliments: “Among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist.” And Christ reveals why: He is the last of the prophets, the one who brings the age of the law and the prophets to a close. But he is even more. He is Elijah, the one sent before the promised Messiah to prepare the way for him. Then comes an unexpected reversal: “Yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” Do not Christ’s words awaken in our hearts an ardent longing for heaven? What else could matter in life but to arrive there, where the least of us will be greater than the greatest one on this earth?

2. Longing for Heaven: How much do we really desire to reach our final goal? Does our attitude sometimes reflect St. Augustine’s during the process of his conversion, before he received the final, definitive grace of entrusting his life entirely to God? Do we not have to confess that we often say to God, “Lord, please bring me to heaven—but not yet!”? St. Cyprian reflects on this phenomenon in one of his homilies: “How unreasonable it is to pray that God’s will be done, and then not promptly obey it when he calls us from this world! Instead we struggle and resist like self-willed slaves and are brought into the Lord’s presence with sorrow and lamentation, not freely consenting to our departure, but constrained by necessity. And yet we expect to be rewarded with heavenly honors by him to whom we come against our will!”

3. The Kingdom of Heaven Suffers Violence: A true longing for heaven is necessary, because it is not easy to arrive there. Christ assures us, “The kingdom of heaven suffers violence.” What does Our Lord mean by this enigmatic affirmation? Surely he does not intend to contradict his own new commandment of love? The “violence” Christ speaks of must be done exclusively to ourselves. In order to ascend the heights of holiness we need to follow in the footsteps of St. John the Baptist, dying to our earthly tendencies. Am I prepared to renounce what often seems most intimately a part of me? Can I beg the Lord for humility? “That others may be more loved than I. That others may be called to occupy posts and I may be forgotten. That others may be preferred to me in everything. Lord Jesus, make this my prayer” (from Litany of Humility, traditional prayer).

Conversation with Christ: Lord, you are showing me that heaven is not for the weak and the soft, but for those who are strong in dying to themselves and living for you and for souls. Help me to grow in fortitude in order to win heaven.

Resolution: Today, when I experience something painful or difficult, I will offer up the unpleasantness to God, knowing it is nothing in comparison to the reward of heaven that awaits me.


31 posted on 12/13/2012 7:56:40 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

Listen and Understand

 

by Food For Thought on December 13, 2012 · 

Jesus is pleading with us to listen and understand. Today’s readings may be complex, but he doesn’t radically divert from what was prophesied by Elijah and John the Baptist. He reinforces what they’ve preached.

Having hearing and comprehension is a grace. But, if we choose to remain spiritually deaf and dumb to the Good News, we would be missing out on God’s simple, yet profound, message of hope and love for us all.


32 posted on 12/13/2012 8:13:22 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body

 


<< Thursday, December 13, 2012 >> St. Lucy
 
Isaiah 41:13-20
View Readings
Psalm 145:1, 9-13 Matthew 11:11-15
 

CHRISTMAS TREES

 
"I will plant in the desert the cedar, acacia, myrtle, and olive; I will set in the wasteland the cypress, together with the plane tree and the pine." —Isaiah 41:19
 

The prophet Isaiah mentions Christmas trees: the cedar and pine trees. These trees will miraculously grow in the desert and wasteland. These Christmas trees are trees of life arising in the midst of death, under impossible circumstances.

Besides the Isaiah tree, there is the Genesis Christmas tree. Traditionally, Christmas trees remind us of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the garden of Eden (Gn 2:17). Also, the trees were decorated with apples to remind us of the first sin. This tree was a tree of death which cuts us off from the tree of life (Gn 3:22). Finally, Acts of the Apostles refers to the tree of Calvary (Acts 13:29). The Acts tree is Jesus' cross. This tree, as the tree of Christ's death, is the tree of eternal life.

What does your Christmas tree and your life stand for? Life or death? Salvation or sin? Victory or defeat? Calvary or Eden? Two weeks from today is Christmas Eve. "Prepare the way of the Lord" (Is 40:3).

 
Prayer: Jesus, thank You for the tree of Calvary, the tree of life, the Christmas tree. I give my life to You.
Promise: Jesus said, "I solemnly assure you, history has not known a man born of woman greater than John the Baptizer. Yet the least born into the kingdom of God is greater than he." —Mt 11:11
Praise: St. Lucy's mother opposed her vow of virginity in service of Jesus. Jesus healed her mother's physical condition and opened her heart to her daughter's vocation.

33 posted on 12/13/2012 8:27:23 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All



34 posted on 12/13/2012 8:28:27 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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