Mexican celebrations during Advent

Paz Vital Living in Community Leave a Comment

Growing up in Mexico, every year around this time everyone looks forward to major festivities. The Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe is celebrated on December 12. It’s a huge celebration throughout the whole country which commemorates the appearances of the Virgin Mary to an Aztec man in the 16th century. The story is that Mary appeared to Juan Diego and sent him on a mission to have a shrine built in her honor. He hardly felt capable of achieving this task since he was an indigenous man and spoke Nahuatl, not the Spanish of the Bishop. At first the …

Celebrating Advent, Christmas and Epiphany at Holy Wisdom Monastery

Holy Wisdom Monastery Prayer & Worship, Spirituality Articles Leave a Comment

(Selections from the Liturgy of the Hours used by Benedictine Women of Madison, Holy Wisdom Monastery, Middleton, WI) Anticipating Christmas with the O Antiphons During the last week before Christmas, we begin the daily singing of the   O Antiphons, an ancient practice that embraces the sense of longing and anticipation for Christmas which swells with each day.  These antiphons are sung prior to the Magnificat, the Song of Mary from Luke 1:46-55, in our evening prayers throughout this week.  Each antiphon begins by addressing God with a name that expresses God’s loving design for people of all times and places.  Each …

Script lettering: O Antiphons

O Antiphons

Ann Moyer Homepage, Monastic Life, Prayer & Worship 2 Comments

In the monastic Liturgy of the Hours (morning, midday and evening prayers of the community), antiphons are sung as an introduction and a response to readings of the psalms, the heart of our liturgy, and before and after the Benedictus at the end of morning prayer and the Magnificat at the end of evening prayer. During the last days of Advent we change to special antiphons, the O Antiphons, to accompany the Magnificat, Mary’s song of joy and humility. Sung each evening at the end of evening prayer, they provide an additional layer of hope and expectation. The origin of the O Antiphons …

Sisters and sojourners gathered around the Advent wreath for evening prayer

Presence

Lynne Smith, OSB Building Community, Living in Community 2 Comments

I’ve been reflecting on “presence” since Advent began. Paul Knitter’s homily of December 6, 2015 brought my musings into focus. Here is a line that caught my attention. “That Jesus will ‘come again’ in the future is not out there, on a horizontal line: rather, the future is vertically the depth of the present, that which is already here but has to be discovered, trusted, and realized.” Benedictine spirituality calls me to see Christ in every person I encounter. I’m better at being present to that reality on some days than on others. Recent weeks have been full of opportunities …

Awakening to Advent

Denise West Far from home, Living in Community 13 Comments

There is such a thing as an Advent calendar, which counts down the days until Christmas. During Advent, Christians look forward to the birth of Jesus. Until recently, this was pretty much the sum total of my understanding of Advent. Observing the season is not part of my tradition–growing up, I didn’t even go to church for Christmas or Easter. If Advent was observed at my current home church, I must not have been tuning in. This year signs of Advent are unmistakable. Paz and I helped create the Advent wreath for Sunday Assembly, we set out the Advent prayer …