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Sunday, December 19, 2021

Monday, December 20, 2021

 

Monday of the Fourth Week of Advent

GO CARROLLING DAY 

Luke, Chapter 1, verse 30:

30 Then the angel said to her, “Do not be AFRAID, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 

Mary had no fear of the world or man, yet, when the angel appeared she was immersed in holy fear. Let us follow Mary’s example and bravely face the day saying YES to God. 

God’s Handiwork[1] 

Every Christmas although the same in many ways is always new for each Christmas expresses a hope learned from a lifetime of praising God. For every Christmas if we open our eyes to truth, we will see the handiwork of God, the rock of our salvation. Perhaps in these final days of anticipation it would do us well to reflect on the virtues of Mary Christ’s very own mother and in these final days in some way reflect them in our own lives. 

Generosity[2] the mode of Our Lady’s soul 

Our Lady puts all she has at God’s disposal. In an instant, all her personal plans – and no doubt she had many – were discarded so that she could do everything God wanted her to. She made no excuses, had no reservations. From the very first moment, Jesus is the one great ideal of her life. Throughout her life on earth Our Lady showed limitless generosity. Among the few episodes of the Gospel that refer to her, two of them speak directly of her attention to the wants of others. She generously gave of her time to look after her cousin St Elizabeth until the birth of her son, John, and she was solicitous for the well-being of the young couple and their guests at the wedding reception in Cana of Galilee.  Such attitudes were second nature to her. Her neighbors in Nazareth would have much to tell us about Mary’s innumerable little services to them in their everyday lives. The Blessed Virgin never thought of herself, but of others. She did her household chores with the greatest simplicity and happiness while maintaining the deepest interior recollection, for she knew that God was within her. In Elizabeth’s house everything was sanctified by Our Lady and the Child she carried in her womb. In Mary we confirm the truth that generosity is a virtue of great souls, who know how to find their reward in the act of giving: you received without pay, give without pay.  A generous person knows how to be loving and understanding and how to give material help ­without demanding love, understanding or help in return. He gives and forgets he has given, and in this lies his riches. He has understood that it is better to give than to receive.  He realizes that to love is in its essence to give oneself to others. Far from being an instinctive inclination, love is a conscious decision of the will to draw close to other people. To be able to love truly it is important to be detached from everything and, especially, from self, to give gratuitously … This detachment from self is the source of a balanced personality. It is the secret of happiness. 

Christmas gift suggestions 

·       to your enemy, forgiveness.

·       To an opponent, tolerance.

·       To a friend, your heart.

·       To a customer, service.

·       To all, charity.

·       To every child, a good example.

·       To yourself, respect.”

— Oren Arnold

Go Caroling Day[3]

Any fan of old classic movies knows that carolers were one of the hallmarks of any Christmas themed movie. Whether it was “It’s a Wonderful Life” or Charles Dickens “Christmas Carol”, you could be certain at some point some warmly bedecked singers would arrive at someone’s door belting out the traditional songs for Christmas. While Caroling is slowly falling out of style, there’s still time to preserve this time-honored tradition, and Go Caroling Day is your call to arms. Caroling has a long history in the world, potentially existing longer than Christmas itself and having moved into that religious practice from much older roots. This is no surprise, given that the act of singing has long been a form of religious observance, and religious hymns are certainly not a new way of honoring one’s faith. Caroling itself, however, is specifically used to reference those songs and traditions of Christmas, and for many years was a heavily practiced tradition that many people eagerly took part in, whether by joining the carolers or by avidly awaiting their arrival at their doorstep as avatars of Christmas cheer. Wassailing was another tradition that was quite similar in many ways but was actually used to travel to the orchards and other places where cider was produced. It was believed that singing to the trees would promote a good harvest for the year and was almost exclusively practiced in England.

How to Celebrate Go Caroling Day

Well, one might suppose that the answer is right there in the name, might they? The best way to celebrate Go Caroling Day is to organize a group of friends and relations and get out there and get your songbird on for this holiday! All of the songs you might want to sing have to be familiar after all these years, you’ve sung them growing up, as part of your school choir, and they’re on the radio in multitudinous variations starting from before Thanksgiving. (That’s another issue, don’t get me started). However, if you are more of the non-traditional sort, you can still get your songster on each year by learning the many variations of these holiday songs. The H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society has released three albums all dedicated to Lovecraftian rewrites of the holidays, and they are nothing short of fantastic. The point of Go Caroling Day is to get out and share the spirit of the season, however, you celebrate it, with everyone.

Now get singing!

Spiritual Crib[4] 

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. 

·       10th day, December 20th: THE SHEPHERDS—Works of Mercy These are so pleasing to our Lord, and we must therefore practice them corporally as well as spiritually. Pray much for poor sinners and for God's dear missionaries who are trying to convert them. 

Evening Antiphon 

Come, and bring forth the captive from his prison. 

O Key of David, and Scepter of the House of Israel, who opens and no man shuts, who shuts, and no man opens; Come and bring forth the captive from his prison, he who sits in darkness and in the shadow of death.

“Beware the Pogonip”

Definition: The word pogonip is a meteorological term used to describe an uncommon occurrence: frozen fog. The word was coined by Native Americans to describe the frozen fogs of fine ice needles that occur in the mountain valleys of the western United States in December. According to Indian tradition, breathing the fog is injurious to the lungs.

Daily Devotions

·       Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Today's Fast: Reparations for offenses and blasphemies against God and the Blessed Virgin Mary

·       Jesse Tree ornament: Jesus is Key of David: Isaiah 22:22 Symbols: key, broken chains

·       Eat waffles and Pray for the assistance of the Angels

·       Monday: Litany of Humility

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Go to Mass

·       Rosary



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