Jesus answered: ‘Will you lay down your life for me?’ - John 13:38

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"Young people in particular, I appeal to you: bear witness to your faith through the digital world!"

-Pope Benedict XVI

Pray for Pope Benedict's prayer intentions for this month. Find out more here.

Friday, December 25, 2009

"Let us go there!"

In all kinds of ways, God has to prod us and reach out to us again and again, so that we can manage to escape from the muddle of our thoughts and activities and discover the way that leads to him. But a path exists for all of us. The Lord provides everyone with tailor-made signals. He calls each one of us, so that we too can say: "Come on, ‘let us go over’ to Bethlehem – to the God who has come to meet us. Yes indeed, God has set out towards us. Left to ourselves we could not reach him. The path is too much for our strength. But God has come down. He comes towards us. He has travelled the longer part of the journey. Now he invites us: come and see how much I love you. Come and see that I am here. Transeamus usque Bethlehem, the Latin Bible says. Let us go there!

- from Pope Benedict's 2009 Christmas sermon

The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh

The Eighth day before the first of January, eighth day of the lunar month.

Innumerable ages having passed since the creation of the world, when in the beginning God created Heaven and earth and formed man in his own image;

many more centuries after the flood, when the Most High placed his rainbow in the heavens as a sign of the covenant and of peace;

from the migration of Abraham, our father in faith, from Ur of the Chaldeans, twenty- one centuries;

from the exodus of the people of Israel out of Egypt, led by Moses, thirteen centuries;

from the anointing of David as King, about one thousand years;

in the sixty-fifth week according to Daniel’s prophecy;

in the year of the one hundred and ninety-fourth Olympiad; from the founding of the city of Rome,

seven hundred and fifty-two years; in the rule of Caesar Octavian Augustus, the forty- second year;

the whole world being at peace: Jesus Christ, eternal God, the eternal Father’s Son, being pleased by His coming to consecrate the world, by the Holy Spirit conceived, nine months having passed since His conception, in Bethlehem of Judah was born of the Virgin Mary, and became man. [KNEEL]

The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh.

The above is via NLM.

The Proclamation from the USCCB, as compared with the Vatican edition, has left many people dissatisfied. John Burchfield of the St. Theresa's Gregorian Schola made this English version as a more literal rendering of notes and text.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Happy Feast of the Immaculate Conception!

From Fr. Marin's allocutio last week:

Mary's Immaculate Conception was not declared as dogma until 1854, when Pope Pius IX declared it in his Papal Bull.

"We declare, pronounce and define that the doctrine which holds that the Blessed Virgin Mary, at the first instant of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace of the Omnipotent God, in virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of mankind, was preserved immaculate from all stain of original sin, has been revealed by God, and therefore should firmly and constantly be believed by all the faithful...."

- Pope Pius IX

However, for many many years, it was already in the life of the Church. Mary was blessed more than any other creature. The Greek Fathers believed that she was free from the stain of sin. Only one other woman was born without original sin: Eve. But there is a world of difference between Eve's choice and Mary's choice. Mary is the New Eve, the woman promised in the Book of Genesis. God said that "I will put enmity between you and the woman," and we now know that 'woman' refers to the Virgin Mary. The word 'enmity' in a way means that the serpent will have no power over Mary. It was as if God was already telling us in a vague way that Mary will be preserved from sin. Let us take the opportunity on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception to honor her--God's masterpiece, to do something special for her.