Friday, September 29, 2017

FEAST OF SAINT MICHAEL-YOM KIPPUR


“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39

Psalm 102, Verse 16-18
16 The nations shall fear your name, LORD, all the kings of the earth, your glory, 17 once the LORD has rebuilt Zion and appeared in glory, 18 heeding the plea of the lowly, not scorning their prayer.

This psalm proclaims the Lords eternal love and that he will in the end bring about the salvation of those who love him for “Who is like unto Him”.

Feast of Saint Michael[1]

SAINT MICHAEL is the prince of the heavenly armies, who first contended against the proud Lucifer. The holy Church honors him as a particular defender, and the faithful call upon him in all dangers of soul and body, but they particularly implore his intercession at the hour of death, in order that, after having, according to his example, courageously fought against Satan, they may receive the crown of victory, and that their souls may by him be brought before the throne of God. Let us also venerate him, and, full of confidence, cry out with the holy Church, “Holy archangel Michael, protect us in battle that we may not perish in the tremendous judgment.”

Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel

Great prince of heaven, St. Michael, to thy protection I commend my soul and body, and, by the glory which thou possessest in heaven, I beseech thee that thou wouldst ever assist me, particularly at the close of my life; that thou wouldst strengthen my faint-heartedness, and obtain for me from God the remission of my sins, and an entire submission to His holy will, that my soul may depart full of comfort. Then receive it, and bring it, under the guidance of the holy angels, before the face of God, to enjoy the contemplation of Him for all eternity. Amen.


Michaelmas (September 29th) [2]

The anniversary of the dedication of St. Michael the Archangel's basilica outside of Rome by Pope Boniface II in 530 A.D. affords the Church the opportunity to honor one of its most significant saints. Tradition holds that Michael is the heavenly spirit who cast Satan and his minions into Hell after their revolt from God. As the "Governor of Heaven" (Praepositus Paradisi), he is ranked only below the Mother of God in the Confiteor. The Roman church also identifies him as the angel whom St. John saw in heaven standing near the altar of God and offering the prayers of the saints like an odor of sweetness (see the offertory blessing of incense at a High Mass). He is also singled out in the Requiem Mass as the banner-bearer who leads the departed to purgatory and heaven (see offertory prayers). Finally, Michael's victory over the devil's army renders him not only the patron saint of souls, but of Christian soldiers. All of this leads to the conclusion that Michael is one of our most potent allies and helps us see why the Roman rite has traditionally venerated him with such affection and respect.

Consequently, Michaelmas (pronounced "mikk-el-mes") was one of the great public holidays and religious feasts of early and medieval Europe. Saint Michael's parades, Michael's fairs, Michael's Plays, etc. would in many places constitute the climax of autumn harvest celebrations. Michaelmas also coincided with the "quarter days" in Northern Europe, one of the four times in the year when free men would sit in court, make laws, and pay rents.

Yom Kippur[3]


Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) is the last day to atone our sins of the Ten Days of Repentance, which start on the New Year (Rosh Hashanah). This is a fast mentioned in the Bible and the punishment mentioned for not keeping this fast is excommunication. Jews seek to 'purify their souls' on this day, by abstaining from common pleasures.  Yom Kippur is celebrated by most all Jewish denominations.  It is a fast day from the eve until the next day nightfall (twenty five hours).  No food or drink is permissible.  It is a day on which Jews 'afflict the soul', which includes wearing only non-leather shoes, not combing one's hair and no marital relations. For many Orthodox Jews, most of Yom Kippur is spent in prayer in the Synagogue.  Five prayer services are held (as opposed to the normal three daily prayers).

Yom Kippur Facts

·         It is customary to eat a festive meal on the Eve of Yom Kippur with round challah bread, a meat meal and sustaining foods. One is not allowed to risk one's life and thus anyone in danger of life from fasting, including the young and sick are not allowed to fast. Yom Kippur is the only Jewish fast observed on a Sabbath, due to its importance.
·         It is customary to wear white on the holiday, which symbolizes purity and calls to mind the promise that our sins shall be made as white as snow (Isaiah 1:18). Some people wear a Kittel, the white robe in which the dead are buried.
·         Yom Kippur Liturgy in Orthodox and most Traditional communities includes Kol Nidre prayer in which Jews annul all their vows and Avinu Malkeinu, 'Our father our King'.
·         The last of the Orthodox and traditional five Synagogue services for Yom Kippur is the Neilah service (final 'closing of the gates').  It is considered particularly heart-rendering and people often cry during the service.  At the end of the service, a Shofar (ram's horn) is blown and the end of the day is pronounced.
·         Jews ask the Lord to be considered both as a child and as a servant.  They request from God that as a father of a child, God have mercy as a father does over his child.


Fitness Friday Recognizing that God the Father created man on Friday the 6th day I propose in this blog to have an entry that shares on how to recreate and renew yourself in strength; mind, soul and heart.

Rest[4]

On Yom Kippur, I’ll skip my physical workout for a spiritual one instead. In fact, Yom Kippur is all about getting beyond our physical selves so we can focus solely on doing the difficult, sacred work the High Holidays demand of us, free from the distractions of our bodies and their needs. “When we refrain from indulging our physical appetites for a limited period, in order to devote ourselves for a time more exclusively to demands that rank higher in our hierarchy of values, we are not denying the physical appetites their just place in life; we are simply recognizing the need of putting them in their place.” Although many Jews expect to fast on Yom Kippur, to help ensure we devote ourselves to a most accurate cheshbon hanefesh (accounting of the soul), it is customary to refrain from five specific activities related to our bodies throughout the holiest day of the Jewish year:

1.      Eating and drinking: The majority of our lives take place in our physical selves, which require sustenance to function optimally. In an effort to get beyond our corporeal body on this day, we forego food and drink. Of course, you should only do what your body can manage in a healthy way. Those who are sick, pregnant, elderly, or otherwise unable to fast should not do so or should do so only in a modified way.
2.      Wearing leather: In an earlier era, leather shoes often were among our most comfortable. If we’re focused on our personal comfort, we can’t also be fully attentive to our spiritual selves. For this reason, you may notice clergy or other worshippers sporting canvas sneakers in lieu of leather shoes on Yom Kippur.
3.      Bathing and shaving: Because we are engaging with our souls on this day, cleaning and grooming our bodies can take a backseat on Yom Kippur.
4.      Anointing ourselves with oil, cream, cologne, perfume, or other balms and salves for physical pleasure diverts our attention from the spiritual reckoning for which Yom Kippur is intended. Thus using lotions and the like also is an activity from which we abstain on this sacred day.
5.      Sexual relations: For all the reasons noted above, refraining from sexual relations on Yom Kippur turns our attention away from our bodies, centering it instead on our actions and misdeeds of the past year.

By abstaining from these activities for the day, we set ourselves up to truly examine our innermost, intimate beings in a most meaningful way, giving ourselves an opportunity to explore what we can do differently in the coming year to tip the balance toward good. When the sun sets on the Sabbath of Sabbaths, we slowly ease back into our physical selves – returned, revived, refreshed. Mishkan HaNefesh, the new Reform machzor (High Holiday prayer book), eloquently petitions:

May this long day of fasting and self-denial
inspire acts of creativity, generosity, and joy.
May we go from strength to strength.

Yes, throughout the coming year and beyond, may it be our bodies that feed the hungry, comfort the bereaved, clothe the naked, and bring justice and humanity to the places they are needed most. 

Daily Devotions/Prayers
·                 Drops of Christ’s Blood
·                 Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus
·                 National 54 day Rosary day 46
·                 September Devotion: Our Lady of Sorrows
·                 Total Consecration Day 19
·                 Fast, go to confession (attonement), visit the Blessed Sacrament chapel and thank HIM. In the evening break the fast with challah or have waffles. St. Michael is the Patron of Belgium and the waffles is a traditional food on the Feast of St. Michael.







Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Monday, August 12, 2019

Saturday, April 3, 2021

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Friday, April 2, 2021

Friday, March 26, 2021