Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Traveling through Advent toward Christmas

With Advent upon us, I wanted to leave you a few links to Advent prayers/meditations that can already be found on Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam.
The St. Andrew Christmas Novena prayer is one of my favorite Advent devotions.  It begins tomorrow, November 30, on the feast of St. Andrew and continues until Christmas.  If you would like to learn more about this beautiful prayer, the following post discusses it in more detail:  St. Andrew Christmas Novena prayer.

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St. Andrew Christmas Novena Prayer
(recite 15 times daily)
Hail and blessed be the hour and moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in piercing cold. In that hour, vouchsafe, O my God! to hear my prayer and grant my desires (requests may be mentioned here), through the merits of Our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of His Blessed Mother.   Amen.

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An additional Advent prayer is the Expectation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  This prayer, also a novena, begins on December 16 and ends on Christmas Eve.  It brings to mind the Expectation of Mary as Christ's birth draws near.  The feast of the Expectation of Mary is historically celebrated on December 18 and is one of the Church's most ancient Advent festivals of our Lady.  
This prayer reminds the faithful to honor Mary for her Fiat to our Lord and praises our God for His Incarnation.  As we wait for the birth of our Lord on Christmas, may we also be mindful of our Lady's joyful waiting, for she also eagerly awaited Him, her Son and her God, Whom her entire being adored and desired to serve in all things.
The Expectation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

"Drop down the dew from above, you heavens, and let the clouds rain the Just One! Let the earth be opened and bud forth a Savior!" (Isaiah 48:8).
O Lord, how wonderful You are everywhere in the world! You have made for Yourself a worthy dwelling-place in Mary!
***Recite 1 Glory be.

"Behold, a Virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and His name shall be called Emmanuel" (Isaiah 7:14).
"Do not be afraid, Mary, for thou has found grace with God. And behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb and shalt bring forth a Son; and thou shalt call His name Jesus" (Luke 1:30).
***Recite 1 Hail Mary.

"The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee, and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee; and, therefore, the Holy One to be born shall be called the Son of God. But Mary said: 'Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done unto me according to thy word'" (Luke 1:35).
***Recite 1 Hail Mary.

Holy and immaculate Virgin, how shall I praise you as I ought? You have borne in your womb Him Whom heaven could not contain. You are blessed and worthy of veneration, Virgin Mary, for you became the Mother of the Savior while remaining a Virgin.
***Recite 1 Hail Mary.

Mary speaks:  "I sleep and my heart watches . . . I to my Beloved, and my Beloved to me, who feeds among the lilies" (Song of Solomon 6:2).

Let us pray.  Grant, we beg of You, Almighty God, that we who are weighed down by the old yoke of sin, may be freed by the new birth of Your only-begotten Son for which we long. Who lives and reigns forever. Amen.

Sing or Recite the following hymn,

"Alma Redemptoris Mater."
Mother of Christ,
Do hear your people's cry,
Star of the deep
And portal of the sky.

Mother of Him
Whose hand your glory made,
Sinking, we strive,
And call to you for aid.

Oh, by that joy
Which Gabriel did bestow;
O Virgin first and last,
Your tender mercy show.

Let us pray.  O God, You willed that Your Word should take flesh in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary at the message of an angel; grant us, Your humble servants, that we who truly believe her to be the Mother of God, may be helped by her intercession with You. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

God bless!

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