Damasus I , Opt. Lucy , Memorial John of the Cross , Memorial Third Sunday of Advent , Sunday Peter Canisius , Opt. Fourth Sunday of Advent , Sunday Christmas , Solemnity Stephen , Feast John , Feast Holy Innocents , Feast Thomas Becket , Opt. Holy Family , Feast Sylvester I , Opt.
The Gospels for the Sundays in December are taken from St. Luke and are from Year C, Cycle 1 of the readings. December 2nd - 1st Sunday in Advent Jesus talks about signs in the sun, the moon and the stars and on earth the nations will be in dismay.. December 16th - 3rd Sunday in Advent The crowds question St. John the Baptist asking him who he is. December 30th - Holy Family In this Gospel Jesus is found in the temple sitting with the teachers answering their questions. The liturgy of Advent focuses on remembering Christ's first coming at Bethlehem which then directs our mind to Christ's Second Coming at the end of time.
The readings focus on the people of the Old Testament awaiting the Messiah, John the Baptist, heralding the way for Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary and her maternal preparations. The main Feasts of Advent are St. Francis Xavier December 3 , St. John Damascene, December 4 , St. Nicholas December 6 , St. Lucy December 13 , St. John of the Cross December 14 and St. Peter Canisius December Christmas and Easter are the only solemnities with octaves attached in the revised calendar.
The Christmas octave differs from Easter in that it includes some major feasts: St. Stephen December 26 , St. John the Evangelist December 27 , and St.
Baby Steps to Living the Liturgical Year as a Family - Catholic All Year
Thomas Becket December December - Overview for the Month. All honor to you, Mary! From you arose the Sun of Justice, Christ our God. December 12 Our Lady of Guadalupe. Mary, who was "intimately united with the birth of the Church in America, became the radiant Star illuminating the proclamation of Christ the Saviour to the sons of these nations. Recipe of the Month Speculaus. This hard spice cookie is made for the feast of St. Nicholas in Holland.
It is a delicious cookie and appropriate for Christmas as well. Activity of the Month Jesse Tree. The Tree of Jesse, with its symbols representing Old Testament stories and events leading up to the birth of Christ, is another approach to the meaning of Christmas. Immaculate Conception. Based on dogma, the singular Grace of Our Lady is celebrated on December 8th. This emblem of St. The prayer does not say that we reject passing things nor does it describe things of this world in a negative light.
Rather, the Eucharistic bread and wine we share, these are the enduring things of heaven, the body and blood of Christ.
By sharing our daily bread in communion we learn as a community to value, hold fast and even to love the enduring things of heaven. The communion we share informs our daily conduct as we learn to value even passing things as bearers of the enduring things of heaven. Second Sunday of Advent Collect Almighty and merciful God, may no earthly undertaking hinder those who set out in haste to meet your Son, but may our learning of heavenly wisdom gain us admittance to his company.
He is talking not about the babe in the manger but about the adult Christ soon to begin his public ministry. This prayer presents our response to Christs call to join his company. The prayer first appears in the seventh-century Roman parish tradition and in seven subsequent manuscripts before it is lost to the liturgical tradition, until reclaimed for the Latin edition of the Roman Missal.
As we gather together to meet Christ in the assembly, in the word, in the ministers and in the Eucharist our efforts simply to arrive at church with the proper disposition provide the context for this prayer about hastening to meet Christ. We gather from every walk of life and these earthly undertakings are not cast in a negative light except in their ability to hinder us for our single-minded pursuit of Christ and his company.
We learn heavenly wisdom in the liturgy of the word when we hear the voice of Christ, the Wisdom of God. This heavenly wisdom, in turn, helps us to conduct our earthly undertakings in a way that does not hinder our single-minded pursuit of Christ and his company. We gain admittance to Christs company when we are baptized as Christians, and time and time again when we join with the baptized in the liturgical celebration where we form the body of Christ, the Church in action.
We gain admittance to his company when we share in communion. We gain admittance to Christs company when we welcome him who comes to us in our neighbor in their need, which is the only criterion given in the Gospel for the final judgment and admittance to the company of saints. Prayer over the Offerings Be pleased, O Lord, with our humble prayers and offerings, and since we have no merits to plead our cause, come, we pray, to our rescue with the protection of your mercy. Commentary The technical language used in this prayer suggests that we stand before the magistrate in need of someone to plead our cause.
The merits of our case alone are inadequate to our situation. The prayer appears in both the Roman Papal and parish traditions of the seventh century, but only the parish version has the words of your mercy , which have been preserved in the current prayer. While we offer prayers and offerings however inadequate and ask that the Lord be pleased with these. Our prayers and offerings, however, cannot be used to manipulate God into acting on our behalf, nor are they intended to do so.
Rather, we stand defenseless and plead that the Lord come to rescue us not out of obligation but because of the abundance of divine mercy. While other prayers over the gifts indicate an ongoing and reciprocal exchange of gifts between God and humanity, this prayer emphasizes the utter gratuity of the divine gift.
This prayer is offered right before the Eucharistic Prayer begins, and so anticipates the coming of the Lord in the Eucharist who gives his body as our daily bread and his blood as our protection. This bodily self-gift in the form of food and drink that we share rescues us. In anticipation of this utter generosity of the divine gift we offer what we have, prayers of thanksgiving with simple offerings of bread and wine and our ministry of service to our neighbor in their need.
From this experience we learn that each of us is called to give of ourselves often in relationships that are not mutual and to give not because others have earned what we are capable of giving but because we have learned the ways of abundant mercy. Prayer after Communion Replenished by the food of spiritual nourishment, we humbly beseech you, O Lord, that, through our partaking in this mystery, you may teach us to judge wisely the things of earth and hold firm to the things of heaven.
Commentary We ask that the communion we have just shared teach us how to conduct ourselves in daily life. The early Roman parish tradition assigned this prayer to the first of six Sundays of Advent, but by the time it was included in the seventh-century Papal sacramentary, Advent in Rome had been shortened to four Sundays. The prayer begins by reflecting on the communion we have just shared. It is called both food and spiritual nourishment.
To partake of the Eucharistic food and drink is to partake in the mystery of Christs body and blood, and we do so as a community, itself the body of Christ, the Church. As we prepare to return to our daily lives, we pray that partaking in this mystery will instruct us in our daily conduct. The Eucharist teaches us that food, as a product of human labor, is intended to be shared, and that this eucharistic food is at one and the same time the gift of the divine self.
We learn to value the personal investment inherent in bread and wine and all products of human labor. We learn that offering these simple gifts to God is an expression of offering ourselves to God in response to the personal self-gift of God to us. Thus we partake in this mystery by sharing in this exchange of personal self-gift that is conducted in a community of shared goods.
The things of heaven include this partaking of communion essential to the Triune Unity of God. We partake of communion in the Church through our vocation, the specific way in which we give ourselves to God and neighbor. Partaking in this exchange teaches us to perceive and judge wisely the genuine gift of ones self out of communion with others.
The Season of Advent
Third Sunday of Advent Collect O God, who see how your people faithfully await the feast of the Lord's Nativity, enable us, we pray, to attain the joys of so great a salvation, and to celebrate them always with solemn worship and glad rejoicing. Commentary In this prayer our attention shifts toward the coming feast of the Lord's Birth or Nativity.
The prayer is drawn from a fifth- to sixth-century scroll, originally from Ravenna, that contains forty prayers. In this prayer we are aware that God is looking at us, as we look forward to the approaching feast of the Lords Nativity. So this prayer gives us the opportunity to consider how the members of the Sunday assembly look forward to Christmas. This prayer is offered by the whole Church, which includes children, adolescents, adults and seniors.
- Our Liturgical Year!
- Commentary on the Proper Prayers of Advent from the Roman Missal!
- The Season of Epiphany.
- See a Problem?.
- Liturgical Living at a Glance: Advent and Christmas December 2018.
- Preparing Our Hearts for Christ?
- Let Us Keep the Feast: Living the Church Year at Home (Advent and Christmas).
Yet, both the prayer and the feast of the Lord's Nativity have different meaning for a person over the course of ones lifetime. Children may be introduced to this mystery by celebrating the birthday of Jesus. This prayer does not focus on the historical birth of Christ, but on its meaning for us today, much as a child's birthday celebrates the life of the child with us. As we mature in life we may begin to discover new subtleties in this prayer. As adolescents begin to appreciate the ways in which we are saved, they come to name and to celebrate the joys of our salvation in Christ.
Adults, through their commitments to others and professional contribution to society may come to share in many ways in the generativity of this feast and may learn from the humility of the Savior. Seniors may reflect upon the many Christmas feasts they have celebrated to realize that they have indeed attained the joys of their salvation. They may become aware that all is gift and as of yet incomplete.
Advent 2018 Season
Prayer over the Offerings May the sacrifice of our worship, Lord, we pray, be offered to you unceasingly, to complete what was begun in sacred mystery and powerfully accomplish for us your saving work. Commentary Our sacrifice of worship brings to completion the divine plan of salvation in Christ and accomplishes God's saving work in us. Prayer after Communion We implore your mercy, Lord, that this divine sustenance may cleanse us of our faults and prepare us for the coming feasts.
Commentary This prayer suggests how the whole liturgy helps us to prepare to celebrate the coming feasts. Fourth Sunday of Advent Collect Pour forth, we beseech you, O Lord, your grace into our hearts, that we, to whom the Incarnation of Christ your Son was made known by the message of an Angel, may by his Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of his Resurrection. Commentary Many will be familiar with this prayer from the Angelus , which commemorates the incarnation of Christ.
The prayer comes from the seventh century Papal practice at Rome where it was assigned to March 25, the feast of the Annunciation, when the angel appeared unto Mary when she conceived Christ, for the Latin edition of the Roman Missal the prayer was transferred to the last Sunday before the birth of our Lord. The Angel announcing the birth of Christ refers not only to the Angel that appeared to Mary in the Annunciation but also to the Angels that appeared to the shepherds who came to do homage to the new-born babe.
The prayer does not refer explicitly to the death of Christ, but rather subtly refers to Christs Passion and Cross.
Let Us Keep The Feast: Living the Church Year at Home (Complete Collection)
As disciples of Christ, our way of life is often described as taking up our cross. The prayer also subtly refers to our future glory, already revealed in our history when Christ appeared in glory to the disciples. The Christian way of life, then, is characterized by carrying our cross and already sharing in the glory of the resurrection.
This prayer preserves an early insight that the whole mystery of Christ from his incarnation, passion, death and resurrection and his continuing presence in his body the Church is one integral mystery. The specific moments of this mystery in salvation history are mapped out over the course of the church year, but this prayer reminds us that every Sunday, every liturgy celebrates the whole mystery and our share in it. Commentary In the opening prayer the Angel made known the Incarnation, which was accomplished in the sanctifying power of the Spirit according to this prayer.
The incarnation and the consecration of the bread and wine are connected in this prayer by the working of the Spirit. The Roman Sacramentaries representing both the Papal and parish practices of the city were widely diffused North of the Alps where the two traditions and local practices were conflated in numerous ways. From that creativity this prayer first appears in Francia during the eighth century and eventually became part of the Roman tradition. At St.
Peter's Basilica in Rome, over the altar there stands a monumental baldachin, a canopy supported by four corkscrew columns of Bronze by Bernini. On the underside of the canopy directly over the place on the altar where the gifts of bread and wine are placed is an image of the Holy Spirit. The entire baldachin is, indeed, an architectural expression of the role of the Spirit in the transforming the gifts of bread and wine laid upon the altar. Many older churches have such an expression of the Holy Spirit above the gifts. We prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ with this reference to the incarnation, that is to the Annunciation of the Angel to the Virgin Mary when she conceived our Savior.
The Spirit active in the mystery of the incarnation is also active now in the transformation of the bread and wine. In many churches as we approach the altar to receive communion, we come to stand under a dome with the image of the Spirit at its peak. So too the Spirit sanctifies the assembly engaged in the liturgy and brings unity to the Church. Prayer after Communion Having received this pledge of eternal redemption, we pray, almighty God, that, as the feast day of our salvation draws ever nearer, so we may press forward all the more eagerly to the worthy celebration of the mystery of your Son's Nativity.
Commentary Having already received the pledge of eternity, we pray to celebrate worthily the beginning of that pledge in the nativity of Christ. Newly composed for the Latin edition of the Roman Missal , the first part of the prayer comes from the mass booklet for the feast of St. Lawrence that was included in a sixth century compilation of Roman mass booklets.