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Easter Octave

April 16, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Easter!

Easter, like Christmas, is not the celebration of a day.
At its height, it’s an entire week.
For eight days (the octave of Easter), the Church celebrates every day as a Solemnity:
a week of Sundays.
The season continues for a total of fifty days–longer than the season of Lent!
Here are some ways to make the most of it.

Share the joy–invite friends and family to celebrate with you!

God bless your celebration!

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Easter Sunday

April 16, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Resurrection Sunday!

Readings:
Acts 10: 34, 37-43 (St. Peter proclaims Jesus’ death and resurrection)
Psalm 118: 1-2, 16-17, 22-23 “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad”
Colossians 3:1-4 (set your heart on things above)
OR
I Corinthians 5:6-8 (celebrate, not with corruption, but with sincerity and truth)

Sequence:
Christians, to the Paschal Victim
Offer your thankful praises!
A Lamb the sheep redeems: Christ,
Who only is sinless,
Reconciles sinners to the Father.
Death and life have contended in that combat stupendous:
The Prince of life, Who died, reigns immortal.
Speak, Mary, declaring
What you saw wayfaring.
“The tomb of Christ, Who is living,
The glory of Jesus’ resurrection;
Bright angels attesting,
The shroud and napkin resting.
Yes, Christ my hope is arisen”
To Galilee He goes before you.”
Christ indeed from death is risen, our new life obtaining.
Have mercy, victor King, ever reigning!
Amen. Alleluia.

+John 20:1-9 (At Mary Magdalene’s word, Peter and John run to the empty tomb)

I know
what happened
but
what does it mean?

That’s why
the Church
was sent,
empowered by
the Holy Ghost,
to clarify,
to say

I have a choice!

to set my mind
on things above,
to celebrate
with holy love,
conversion from
the things below,
the malice
and the wickedness
that all corrode
my soul.

My freedom has been won!

but I must choose
and follow through.

Have I incorporated (embodied) the power of Resurrection into my daily life?
Is my mind fixed on things above in sincerity and truth?

Holy Saturday

April 15, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Holy Saturday!

Today

the Church is, as it were, at the Lord’s tomb,
meditating on His Passion and death,
and on His descent into hell,
and awaiting His Resurrection with prayer and fasting
~Paschalis Solemnitatis, paragraph 73

Easter Vigil

Note: a plenary indulgence is granted to the faithful who, at the celebration of the Easter Vigil
(or on the anniversary of their own Baptism)
renew their baptismal vows in any legitimately approved formula,
with the usual conditions of Confession, Communion, prayer for Pope Francis’ intentions
and no attachment to sin.

Readings:
Genesis 1:1-2:2 (Creation)
Psalm 104:1-2, 5-6, 10, 12-14, 24, 35 “Lord, send out Your Spirit, and renew the face of the earth”
or Psalm 33:4-7, 12-13, 20-22 “The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord”
Genesis 22:1-18 (Abraham’s sacrifice of Isaac–foreshadowing of Jesus’ crucifixion)
Psalm16:5, 8-11 “Keep me safe O God; You are my hope”
Exodus 14:15-15:1 (the parting of the Red Sea–foreshadowing of Baptism)
Exodus 15:1-6, 17-18 “Let us sing to the Lord; He has covered Himself in glory”
Isaiah 54:5-14 (God, our Bridegroom, will take us back, and love us)
Psalm 30:2, 4-6, 11-13 “I will praise You, Lord, for You have rescued me”
Isaiah 55:1-11 (God offers us food and water without cost from His abundance)
Isaiah 12:2-6 “You will draw water joyfully from the springs of salvation”
Baruch 3:9-15, 32-4:4 (we are in need because we have forsaken God, the Source of everything)
Psalm 19:8-11 “Lord, You have the words of everlasting life”
Ezekiel 36:16-28 (God will forgive and renew us for His own sake)
Psalm 42:3, 5; 43:3, 4 “Like a deer that long for running streams, my soul longs for You, my God”
or Is 12:2-6 “You will draw water joyfully from the springs of salvation”
or Psalm 51:12-15, 18-19 “Create a clean heart in me, O God”
Romans 6:3-11 (because we have been baptized into Jesus’ death, death has no more power over us)
Psalm 118:1-2, 16-17, 22-23 “Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!”
+Luke 24:1-12 (Why do you seek the living among the dead?)

The Word
that lit the universe
reverberates
again
into the night
restoring light
where darkness reigned.

And all
who fly to Him
are glorified.

Why do I seek the Living among the dead?
What would it be like to have nothing to hide?

Good Friday

April 14, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Good Friday,

Today begins the novena of Divine Mercy.

Also, there is a plenary indulgence available for the asking
for devoutly assisting at the adoration of the Cross in today’s solemn liturgical action,
with the usual conditions of Confession, Communion, prayer for Pope Francis’ intentions
and no attachment to sin.

…we pick up where we left off last night…

Readings:
Isaiah 52:13- 53:12 (He Himself was wounded for our sins)
Psalm 31:2,6,12-13,15-17, 25 “Father, into Your hands I commend My spirit”
Hebrews 4:14-16, 5:7-9 (our High Priest sympathizes with our weakness)
+John 18:1-19:42 (the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ)

My sin
has made me odious;
I drive people away
by what I do.

There is just One
Who shares this fate
with me,
despised by all,
forsaken
on a tree,
to change my life,
and fit me for
intimacy.

Do I draw strength from Jesus’ sharing in my misery?
Do I welcome the call to conversion?

As they were looking on,
so we too gaze on His wounds as He hangs.
We see His blood as He dies.
We see the price offered by the Redeemer,
touch the scars of His resurrection.
He bows His head, as if to kiss you.
His heart is made bare open, as it were,
in love to you.
His arms are extended
that He may embrace you.
His whole body is displayed
for your redemption.
Ponder how great these things are.
Let all this be rightly weighed in your mind:
as He was once fixed to the cross
in every part of His body for you,
so He may now be fixed
in every part of your soul.”
~St. Augustine of Hippo

Holy Thursday

April 13, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Holy Thursday!

We begin at noon, at the cathedral, as our bishop, our successor to the apostles,
gathers his brother priests to celebrate the Chrism Mass.
At this Mass, chrism, the perfumed oil
which is used to signify the indelible gift of the Holy Spirit
in the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Orders,

will be consecrated.
As Christ (literally, “the anointed one”) was anointed priest, prophet and king
(see Exodus 29: 1-9, I Kings 19:16, Samuel 10:1 & 16:1-13, Acts 10:38),
so are Christians–with chrism.
The Oil of Catechumens and the Oil of the Sick will be blessed at this Mass,
and priests will renew their commitment to the ordained priesthood
which Christ instituted on this day when He commanded His first bishops,

Do this in remembrance of Me
~Luke 22:19

Chrism Mass

Readings for the Mid-day Chrism Mass:
Isaiah 61:1-9 (The Lord anointed me to bring glad tidings to the lowly)
Psalm 89:21-22, 25-27 “Forever I will sing the goodness of the Lord”
Revelation 1:5-8 (Christ has made us into a Kingdom, priests for His God and Father)
+Luke 4:16-21 (The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because He has anointed me)

In Christ,
Behold!
fulfillment of
the Promise
to proclaim
the gift
of pardon
that restores
the devastated soul.

In every
ordained priest
this gift
persists.

What is my response to this stupendous gift?
Do I spread this good news?

 

The Sacred Triduum

Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper

At long last we enter the Sacred Triduum,
literally “three days” that form a single celebration
of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
We see, hear, we smell, we taste, we touch
–we are immersed–
in the mysteries of our salvation.
There are significant intermissions in this one celebration,
so that we can go home and rest,
but the celebration we begin tonight will not end until Easter Sunday.
This is the culmination, the highest point, of the entire year.
Come, let us worship…

Readings:
Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14 (the first Passover)
Psalm 116:12-13, 15-18 “Our blessing-cup is a communion with the blood of Christ”
I Corinthians 11:23-26 (the institution of the Eucharist)
+John 13:1-15 (Jesus washes His disciples’ feet)

The key
to all of history
is centered on this night,
on passing over
to a life as yet unknown,
through sacrifice,
a humbling of self
in boldness,
in a giving
and receiving
that transcends the jaws of death.

How fully do I participate in the Passover of the Lord?
How well do I imitate the model He left for me to follow?


Note:
There is a plenary indulgence available for the asking
for praying the “Tantum Ergo (Down in Adoration Falling)
during reposition after the Mass of the Lord’s Supper tonight,
with the usual conditions of Confession, Communion, prayer for Pope Francis’ intentions
and no attachment to sin.

Wednesday of Holy Week

April 12, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Spy Wednesday!

Spy Wednesday is a popular term, not a liturgical one,
yet it describes Judas’ new position among the disciples.
Today he becomes a spy among the Twelve, an informer for the enemy,
waiting for the opportune moment to hand over his Lord to condemnation and death.

Readings:
Isaiah 50:4-9 (My face I did not shield from buffets and spitting)
Psalm 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34 “Lord, in Your great love, answer me.”
+Matthew 26:14-25 (Woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed)

I will not shrink
from suffering
the worst
My children face,
that when they turn
for sympathy
I will be there
to tender it
as One
Who feels their pain.

Do I draw strength from knowing that God shares my suffering?
Do I shrink from sharing in the sufferings of others?

Tuesday of Holy Week

April 11, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Holy Tuesday!

Readings:
Isaiah 49:1-6 (God has prepared His servant for a mission to the whole world)
Psalm 71:1-6, 17 “I will sing of Your salvation”
+John 13: 21-33, 36-38 (Jesus predicts Judas’ betrayal & Peter’s denial)

I’ve given
everything
I am
and have
to follow You–

must I
be thwarted
now?!

Is all
for nought?

I cling
to one key hope
that I will follow
–afterward–
when I have been
equipped
by grace.

How do I handle my limitations?
Wherein lies my hope?

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