The Nativity of the Lord: Mass During the Night and Mass of Christmas Day

Readings: Mass During the Night | Mass of Christmas Day A few years ago, I saw a musical called “Children of Eden.”  It was composed by Steven Schwartz, who is probably more famous for composing “Godspell” and “Wicked.”  The premise of the musical is interesting: it’s the story taken from the first nineteen chapters of… Continue reading The Nativity of the Lord: Mass During the Night and Mass of Christmas Day

The Nativity of the Lord: Vigil Mass (Joseph’s Story)

Today’s readings Once, a very long time ago, there was a man named Joseph.  He was a well-respected and hard-working man, from the family of the great king David.  But since Israel hadn’t been a great nation in a long time, he wasn’t respected for being a great king himself.  Instead, people respected him for… Continue reading The Nativity of the Lord: Vigil Mass (Joseph’s Story)

Friday of the Fourth Week of Advent: O Emmanuel

Today’s readings Today’s Liturgy has us on the edge of our seats: “Lift up your heads and see; your redemption is near at hand.”  So says the psalmist today and all indications are that that psalmist is absolutely right!  Even the last-minute shoppers are starting to panic, there’s only one door left on the Advent… Continue reading Friday of the Fourth Week of Advent: O Emmanuel

Monday of the Fourth Week of Advent: O Root of Jesse

Today’s readings In these late days of Advent, we pray the “O Antiphons.”  These antiphons are the various titles of Jesus as found in Scripture.  Today’s antiphon is “O Root of Jesse” and it is found as the antiphon for the Canticle of Mary in Vespers: “O Flower of Jesse’s stem, you have been raised… Continue reading Monday of the Fourth Week of Advent: O Root of Jesse

The Fourth Sunday of Advent [B]: O Sacred Lord

Today’s readings Hanging in the bedroom hallway of my Mom’s house is a framed graphic that says “With God, all things are possible.”  That reminder has helped me to get through a number of times of uncertainty in my life.  I thought about it as I was reading today’s Gospel, in which the angel, in… Continue reading The Fourth Sunday of Advent [B]: O Sacred Lord

Advent Penance Service

Today’s readings: Isaiah 63:16b-17, 19b; 64:2-7 and Matthew 1:18-24 Isaiah’s lament in our first reading this evening sounds like a lament for every time and place, quite honestly.  Wouldn’t we all prefer to hope that God would come and meet us doing right, being mindful of him in all our ways, mindful of the mighty… Continue reading Advent Penance Service

Our Lady of Guadalupe

Today’s readings Appropriately enough, I think, we celebrate a second of Mary’s feasts in the space of just four days.  During Advent, we naturally turn our hearts in gratitude to Mary for her fiat that made possible our world’s salvation.  Last week we celebrated the Immaculate Conception of Mary; today we celebrate a quite different… Continue reading Our Lady of Guadalupe

Third Sunday of Advent [B]

Today’s readings There’s a little more light today. It might not seem like there’s more light, because the days are rapidly getting shorter, and will continue to do so until the winter solstice. The darkness and cold of the night seem so much more prevalent than the joyful light of day. But still, there’s a… Continue reading Third Sunday of Advent [B]

Friday of the Second Week of Advent

Today’s readings We Americans tend to believe that we ourselves have all the answers; and I don’t necessarily mean that all of us together have the answers, but rather that we individually have the answers.  We often hold relative truth, even if we wouldn’t say that we do.   We often insist on acting according to… Continue reading Friday of the Second Week of Advent

Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today’s Readings Blessed Pope Pius IX instituted the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary on December 8, 1854, when he proclaimed as truth the dogma that our Lady was conceived free from the stain of original sin.  This had been a traditional belief since about the eighth century, and had been… Continue reading Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary