Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Christmas Carol Settring

A Carol setting for Holy Communion

“Good Christian Friends, Rejoice”

P: Oh, may the good Lord be with you.
C: The Lord be with your spirit, too!
P: Lift your hearts to Him in praise.
C: To the Lord our hearts we raise.
P: Let us offer praises true,
C: It is fitting so to do.
Love and thanks we bring to our new-born King!

Preface for Christmas

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”

Holy, holy, holy Lord! God, by heav’n and earth adored!
Here in lowly manger laid, God with us, His love displayed.
Angels singing, “Peace on earth!” at the blessed Savior’s birth;
Hail, hosanna, Prince of Peace! From sin’s pow’r You give release!
Word made flesh, great mystery! Mighty God, You set us free.

Holy, holy, holy Lord! Lifting hearts in one accord,
With the shepherds humbly bow; Christ our King confessing now:
With th’apostles, prophets strong, and the white-robed martyr throng,
Cloud of witnesses, rejoice! With glad heart and mind and voice;
Word made flesh, great mystery! Mighty God, You set us free!

Words of institution and the Our Father

“It Came Upon a Midnight Clear”

Dear Jesus, Lamb of God You are the Father’s gift of love
In mercy cleansing all our sins, our shame and guilt remove.
Your peace to troubled hearts bestow, a joyful Christmas light,
That makes our shadowed pathways now more beautiful and bright

Friday, December 19, 2008

Gifts only God can give

Crux Christi clavis Paradisi -- The cross of Christ is the key of Paradise (John of Damascus).
O Root of Jesse, standing as an ensign before the peoples, before whom all kings are mute, to whom the nations will do homage: Come quickly to deliver us.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

who is responsible?

For some time now, we have been wondering who is responsible for "climate change", as the new mantra for global warming enthusiasts has it. As part of a display in our local library on views of earth from space, this quotation was seen:
"Oceans control the global climate."
Well, what a relief! We're officially off the hook. Will someone please tell Mr. Al Gore, President-elect Obama, etc.??? (Also, please tell Santa not to worry about the North Pole melting any time soon.)

Monday, December 8, 2008

first net-fishing

Last Saturday, December 6th, which, as all good Christians know is St. Nicholas' Day, we celebrated our first net-fishing event, focusing on Grandparents raising grandchildren. 19 net-fishers visited, played, crafted creative memories, sang and ate with 3 adults and 5 children from our local community. God knew what we could handle:) Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Friday, December 5, 2008

lasting value

Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated to the gospel of God which He promised before through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures, concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. Through Him we have received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith among all nations for His name, among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ. (Romans 1:1-6)
Things of lasting value:
--the gospel of God
--the Holy Scriptures
--the birth
--the resurrection
--grace and apostleship
--obedience to the faith.
These are the foundational gifts, sine qua non. Without these gifts, there will be nothing of lasting value (unless the LORD builds the house...). These gifts create and constitute the Church, the body of Christ. These things are worth living and dying for. Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

breaking the cycle

Does it ever seem like we're living in the book of Judges? Every man does what is right in his own eyes, and the cycle of rebellion - chastening - repentance - deliverance - rebellion; goes on and on. The only motive for repentance seems to be alleviation of the symptoms, i.e. pain and suffering, not radical change at the heart level. How to get there? Try this from Fr. Thomas Merton:
The inward movement of compunction (Latin: compunctio, a pricking; a sharp feeling of uneasiness brought on by a sense of guilt, twinge of conscience, remorse)is not so much a matter of hiding ourselves within ourselves, as a liberation of ourselves, which takes place in the depths of our being, and lets us out of ourselves from the inside. This liberation from concentration on our self is the beginning of a conversion, a metanoia, a real inner transformation. The true interior life is not our own life within the depths of our own being. It is the coming of God into our being, from which we have previously gone out, in order to make room for him."
Come quickly, Lord Jesus! Is there room in my heart for Thee?

Monday, December 1, 2008

already advent

A beautiful dusting of snow this morning to welcome cold December in!
These prayers from Magnificat seem extra-meaningful in these confusing times:
From the emptiness when we do not recognize your presence;
from the silence in which we do not hear your voice;
from the darkness in which we do not see your light,
Come, Lord, and save us!

Behold, your King is coming to you; righteous and having salvation!