DAY 39 - MARY, QUEEN OF PROPHETS, PRAY FOR US
ONE THING NECESSARY
PRAY A ROSARY
- Rosary of the Day: Luminous Mysteries
- Traditional 54 Day Rotation: Glorious Mysteries
Those who would like to pray with others via The Telephone Rosary, call 1-951-799-9866 daily at 6 pm Eastern.
Thursday of the Third Week of Advent
John, Chapter 14, Verse 1
not let your hearts be troubled. You have FAITH
in God; have FAITH also in me.
Christ is the way, the truth and the life: to follow Him and to strive to be Saints of God is our faith.
O Antiphons The "Octave" Before Christmas and/or the Golden Nights
Today also marks the beginning of the O Antiphons, the seven jewels of our liturgy in preparation of Christ. With each new Sunday heightening our sense of anticipation and with every Advent custom doing the same, it is little wonder that the eight days before Christmas became a semi-official octave of impatient expectation. This is expressed liturgically in the Divine Office's special Magnificat antiphons for this period. Beginning on the evening of December 17 during Vespers, a "Greater" or "O" antiphon (so named for its opening vocative) is said which explicitly invokes the Son of God under various titles and begs Him to come. The Gregorian chant for these antiphons is exquisite, as are the antiphons themselves, which call attention to the Word's different manifestations to man in the Old Testament and to several of His divine attributes. The antiphons are also noteworthy for their "code."
The titles for Christ from each antiphon form an acrostic which, when read backwards, spells, "ERO CRAS" -- "I will be [there] tomorrow!" It is as if Christ were answering our prayers through the prayers themselves. Finally, the Greater antiphons are the inspiration of the beautiful medieval hymn, Veni, Veni Emmanuel. Each stanza of this famous song is a poetic rendering of an antiphon, which is why the hymn is traditionally sung only during the eight days prior to Christmas. In many places, however, the octave of preparation was extended over nine days, making a Novena. By special permission, the "Golden Mass" of Ember Wednesday was sometimes offered in the pre-dawn hours for nine consecutive days prior to Christmas. Central Europe observed the "Golden Nights," a festive season honoring the Blessed Virgin, the expectant Mother of God; in fact, December 18 was once the Feast of the Expectancy in Spain.
In the Alps, schoolchildren observed the custom of Josephstragen -- "carrying St. Joseph." Each night, a group of boys would carry a statue of St. Joseph to another boy's home. The night after the visit, the boy who had been visited would join the procession, making the number of carriers grow progressively larger. On Christmas Eve all the boys, accompanied by schoolgirls dressed in white, would process the statue through the town to the church, where it would be placed near the manger.
In Latin America, on the other hand, a Novena to the Holy Child (La Novena del Niño) was held in which prayers would be said and lively carols sung in front of the church's empty manger.
Today, according to the Roman Martyrology, is
the feast of St Lazarus known as the brother of St Martha and St Mary of
Bethany. He was the man whom Jesus raised from the dead after having been dead
and in his tomb for four days. The Bible does not trace his history after the
miracle, but tradition says he became a missionary to Gaul, the first bishop of
Marseilles, France, and a martyr in the persecutions of Domitian.
Things to do
· Read this account of St. Lazarus of Bethany at the The Military and Hospitaller Order of St. Lazarus website.
· Read about Bethany, where Jesus raised St. Lazarus from the dead.
· Read about the Agios Lazaros Church in Cyprus.
Read about the translation of the relics of St. Lazarus.
The Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem
The Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus is one of the orders of chivalry to survive the downfall of the Kingdom of Jerusalem and the attempts by the Crusader knights to win control of the Holy Land from the forces of Islam.
In theory the Order remained a military one, but with the exception of a brief period in the 17th century it played no military role after 1291. The Order of Saint Lazarus is one of the most ancient of the European orders of chivalry. At the very least it dates back to the time of the Crusader knights. From its foundation in the 12th century, the members of the Order were dedicated to two ideals: aid to those suffering from the dreadful disease of leprosy and the defense of the Christian faith.
Today the Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem is an international self-governing and independent body, having its own Constitution; it may be compared with a kind of electoral kingdom. According to the said Constitution the Order is nonpolitical, oecumenical or nondenominational, as its membership is open to all men and women being practicing members of the Christian faith in good standing within their particular denomination. Its international membership consists of Roman-catholic, Anglican, Protestant, Orthodox, United, Old Catholic, New Apostolic and other Christians, upholding with their lives, fortunes and honor the principles of Christianity.
it is organized as a Christian Chivalric Order. The Order is registered in
London in accordance with the laws in England. It is both a Military Order of
Mercy and a Hospitaller Order dedicated to the care and assistance of the poor
and the sick. Its aim is to preserve and defend the Christian faith, to guard,
assist succor and help the poor, the sick and dying, to promote and maintain
the principles of Christian chivalry and to follow the teachings of Christ and
His Holy Church in all its works. With the exception of the present Teutonic
Order ("Deutscher Orden") the Order of Saint Lazarus is today the
smallest of the orders of Christian chivalry. It is made up of approximately
five thousand members in the five continents. The Order sees itself as an
oecumenical Christian order whose genesis goes back to the Holy Land, to the crusades
and to the Kingdom of Jerusalem.
A special devotion that can be performed during Advent to prepare for the coming of the Infant Savior. It can be adapted for adults and/or children and applied as is appropriate to your state in life.
· THE CRIB—Confidence-Build the little Crib by an unbounded confidence in God. Give no way to sadness in adversity. Also think not too much of our past sins and faults, making many acts of hope in God's mercy instead. Reflect a little each hour on the great love of God, who becomes Man for us.
· JESSE TREE: Jesus is Wisdom: Sirach (or Ecclesiasticus in old Bibles) 24:2; Wisdom 8:1 Symbols: oil lamp, open book