Words From The Soul?

There are times, when I write that I just can’t seem to get the words right.  I’m trying to express something in my soul, something that I know, but words just don’t suffice.  I ask God to help me, and I find a way to put thought on paper.  Often though, it still seems inadequate, like there is no created word that can describe how the soul feels.  Maybe that is why “The Word” is Christ, because human language would otherwise fail.

As I write today, my son is practicing his Christmas songs on the piano.  The feelings that I have inside, those of a mother for her child, again are beyond words.  With every precise note and every missed note, I feel joy, because he is my son.  I can’t explain why, to an objective ear, no matter how hard I try, unless they have experienced a like situation in their own life…when love transcends objective reality. 

Yesterday, when I prayed the Canticle of Mary, I experienced it differently.  It was as if Our Lady was saying it to me, from soul to soul, sharing in our experience of God. She was proclaiming and rejoicing about her God, but intimately, like she was speaking from a bursting soul…trying to find words to express the Creator’s omnipotence …those insufficient words.  All generations would call her blessed. Her humility was palpable.  The rest, of the canticle, isn’t a history lesson, or list of accomplishments.  It is the cure from the eternal Heart of her Father.  This year, we are excited about one little vaccine to return our lives to “normal”.  Mother Mary is announcing that the Eternal Cure is here.  The healing for all of her children in Christ Jesus.  Can you imagine how she said these things to Elizabeth.  Her soul was shouting and overflowing inside of her, but she was limited by words. We put these words to beautiful and prayerful melodies, but somehow, I think they were spoken with wide eyed enthusiasm, bursting out of her to her cousin. As I read, I thought she is still saying these words to me. She is still trying to proclaim our Cure.

December 12th, nine days from the writing of this post, is The Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  She is Empress of the Americas, her name translates to “the one who crushes the serpent”, her message, “Trust in me: I am your mother.” Our Mother, who hears our wrong notes, but still loves with joy.

Our Lady of Guadalupe calls us to trust, while she is carrying the unborn Savior of the World within herself.  She comes to us adorned in royal dress, wearing a sash designating the child within her is royalty. Who better to turn to during this Advent Season, than the Madonna carrying the Christ Child, the mother who loves us in spite of our sour notes.

Maybe a good way to prepare for the King of the Universe this Advent, is to, from our souls, pray His Mother’s prayer, for her children in this divided nation of her born and unborn children.

The Canticle of Mary

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
My Spirit rejoices in God my Saviour
For He has looked with favour on His lowly servant.From this day all generations will call me blessed:
The Almighty has done great things for me,
And holy is His Name.He has mercy on those who fear Him
In every generation.He has shown the strength of His arm,
He has scattered the proud in their conceit.He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
And has lifted up the lowly.He has filled the hungry with good things,
And the rich He has sent away empty.He has come to the help of His servant Israel
For He has remembered His promise of mercy,
The promise He made to our fathers,
To Abraham and his children for ever.

A Week of Saints/O Antiphons

There are no Saint Feast Days

on the General Roman Liturgical Calendar this week.   Usually when that happens, I just select another saint, who’s feast is that day.  Since the Church sets aside the time of Advent, to reflect upon the coming of Christmas.  I thought it fitting to do the same.

The O Antiphons are prayed during Vespers the octave before Christmas, in anticipation of the birth of the Savior.  They celebrate the prophetic titles of Jesus.  The ancient monks who first assembled the O Antiphons were very creative with the order in which they are prayed. The first letter of each antiphon (in Latin) starting from the last to the first, spells the word ERO CRAS, which translates, “Tomorrow I will come.”

Sunday,  December 16

Third Sunday of Advent

Today is Gaudete Sunday, when we shift our reflection from “the Lord is coming” to “the Lord is near.” Rejoice!

December 17

O Sapientia

O Wisdom, You came forth from the mouth of the Most High, and reach from one end of the earth to the other, mightily and sweetly ordering all things: come and teach us the way of prudence.”

December 18

O Adonai

O Lord, of the house of Israel, You appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush; on Mount Sinai You gave him Your law:  with outstretched arm, come and redeem us.”

December 19

O Radix Jesse

O Root of Jesse, You stand as an ensign to the people; before You kings shall keep silence, all Nations bow in worship: come and save us, and do not delay.”

December 20

O Clavis David

O Key of David and Scepter of the house of Israel; come and deliver us from the chains of prison, we who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.”

December 21

O Oriens

O Radiant Dawn, brightness of the light eternal, sun of righteousness; come and enlighten those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death/”

December 22

O Rex Gentium

“O King of Nations, You are the Cornerstone that  binds two into one: come and save the creatures whom you have fashioned from clay.”

December 23

O Emmanuel

“O Emmanuel (God is with us), the Desire of all nations and their Salvation: come and save us, O Lord our God.”

ERO-CRAS

Tomorrow I Will Come!

 

Advent Week One: Hope

Advent One candle.jpgThis week, I’m sharing my son’s reflection on Advent.  I came home from Mass on Sunday, and he was sitting at the kitchen table coloring with purpose.  He was excited to tell me that he was making an Advent picture for each week, to put on the refrigerator.  The first week, “Hope”, was completed.  He had colored the entire page black, except for a large (white) triangle in the middle and white bubble letters that formed the word “Hope!”.  Inside the white triangle were a couple blobs of black.  He explained that this was an “abstract” picture of hope.  The black was the darkness in the world that is all around us, and the white represented the Trinity and Hope!.  The black blobs indicated that even when we have hope and the Trinity, sometimes bad things happen and we have to keep fighting for hope.

I thought, wow, he really has thought about this.  I was inspired by his active participation for this beautiful season, and how excited he was about it.  We have a picture for each week on the refrigerator, but we can only see the backs of them.  I have to admit that I’m looking forward to what they reveal, about a little boy’s vision of the anticipation and preparation for the Christ Child.  Hmmm, what is my vision?  Have I yet taken the time to really think about Advent, and what it has to draw me closer to God.