Lent 2019: 5 interesting facts about the 40 days religious observance

Taken from christianpost.com, here are five interesting facts about Lent, from the origin of the season’s official color to the meaning of ashes.

The origin of purple

Purple, specifically violet, is the symbolic color used in churches throughout Lent, from drapes and altar frontals to crosses and flowers.

According to the BBC, purple is used for two reasons: first, because it’s associated with mourning and so anticipates the pain and suffering of the crucifixion.

In an act of derision toward Jesus, Pilate placed a purple robe on Jesus, whom he called “King of the Jews.” Mark 15:17 reads: “They dressed Him up in purple, and after twisting a crown of thorns, they put it on Him.”

Second, purple is the color associated with royalty and celebrates Christ’s resurrection and sovereignty. In ancient Rome, “Tyrian purple” was a designator of status. An extremely high value was placed on the dye as it was extracted from sea snails, therefore not easily obtained, according to the Smithsonian.

The meaning of ashesRead More »

Second Sunday of Lent 2019

Daily Lent Prayer
“Lord, open my lips, and my mouth shall declare your praise.”

Collect:

O God, who have commanded us
to listen to your beloved Son,
be pleased, we pray,
to nourish us inwardly by your word,
that, with spiritual sight made pure,
we may rejoice to behold your glory.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. *

The Readings
Genesis 15:5-12,17-18; Psalms 27:1, 7-8, 8-9, 13-14; Philippians 3:17 – 4:1 or Philippians 3:20 – 4:1; Luke 9:28B-36

Daily Meditation:Read More »

Cross of Jesus, Cross of Sorrow

*

Cross of Jesus, cross of sorrow,
Where the blood of Christ was shed,
Perfect man on thee did suffer,
Perfect God on thee has bled!

Here the King of all the ages,
Throned in light ere worlds could be,
Robed in mortal flesh is dying,
Crucified by sin for me.

O mysterious condescending!
O abandonment sublime!
Very God Himself is bearing
All the sufferings of time!

Cross of Jesus, cross of sorrow,
Where the blood of Christ was shed,
Perfect man on thee did suffer,
Perfect God on thee has bled!

*Read More »

#ShortNews: ‘The Lord is the goal of our journey in this world,’

“…On the journey of life, do I seek the way forward? Or am I satisfied with living in the moment and thinking only of feeling good, solving some problems and having fun? What is the path? Is it the search for health, which many today say comes first but which eventually passes? Could it be possessions and wellbeing? But we are not in the world for this. Return to me, says the Lord. To me. The Lord is the goal of our journey in this world. The direction must lead to him.”

“…Today we have been offered a sign that will help us find our direction: the head marked by ash. It is a sign that causes us to consider what occupies our mind. Our thoughts often focus on transient things, which come and go. The small mark of ash, which we will receive, is a subtle yet real reminder that of the many things occupying our thoughts, that we chase after and worry about every day, nothing will remain. No matter how hard we work, we will take no wealth with us from this life. Earthly realities fade away like dust in the wind. Possessions are temporary, power passes, success wanes. The culture of appearance prevalent today, which persuades us to live for passing things, is a great deception. It is like a blaze: once ended, only ash remains. Lent is the time to free ourselves from the illusion of chasing after dust. Lent is for rediscovering that we are created for the inextinguishable flame, not for ashes that immediately disappear; for God, not for the world; for the eternity of heaven, not for earthly deceit; for the freedom of the children of God, not for slavery to things. We should ask ourselves today: Where do I stand? Do I live for fire or for ash?”

Read full Papal’s Homily here; http://press.vatican.va/content/salastampa/en/bollettino/pubblico/2019/03/06/190306e.html

First Sunday of Lent 2019

Daily Lent Prayer
“Lord, open my lips, and my mouth shall declare your praise.”

Collect:
Grant, almighty God,
through the yearly observances of holy Lent,
that we may grow in understanding
of the riches hidden in Christ
and by worthy conduct pursue their effects.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. *

The Readings
Deuteronomy 26:4-10; Psalm 91: 1-2, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15; Romans 10:8-13; Luke 4:1-13

Daily Meditation:
Read More »

10 Meanings of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ

“You are not losing Me, but I am going to be with you in a different way through My Spirit.”

The ascension of Jesus produced joy because the disciples realized what amazing benefits would come to them when Jesus returned to the Father. When Jesus ascended, all the promises regarding the Spirit’s ministry to the disciples were about to be fulfilled. The disciples accepted His ascension, for they had accepted Jesus’ word about the promised One to come. Their doubts and fears were gone. They were convinced of who He was. They knew that He died to forgive them of their sins. They knew He was alive from the dead. In His resurrection, they had hope in victory over death.

After Jesus rose from the dead, He “presented Himself alive” (Acts 1:3) to the women near the tomb (Matthew 28:9-10), to His disciples (Luke 24:36-43), and to more than 500 others (1 Corinthians 15:6). In the days following His resurrection, Jesus taught His disciples about the kingdom of God (Acts 1:3).

Forty days after the resurrection, Jesus and His disciples went to Mount Olivet, near Jerusalem. There, Jesus promised His followers that they would soon receive the Holy Spirit, and He instructed them to remain in Jerusalem until the Spirit had come. Then Jesus blessed them, and as He gave the blessing, He began to ascend into heaven. The account of Jesus’ ascension is found in Luke 24:50-51 and Acts 1:9-11.

It is plain from Scripture that Jesus’ ascension was a literal, bodily return to heaven. He rose from the ground gradually and visibly, observed by many intent onlookers. As the disciples strained to catch a last glimpse of Jesus, a cloud hid Him from their view, and two angels appeared and promised Christ’s return “in just the same way that you have watched Him go” (Acts 1:11).

Here are the 10 reasons why the Resurrection of Jesus Christ is meaningful;Read More »

What Can We Learn from The Emmaus Story

Of the stories unique to the Gospel of Luke, perhaps none is as compelling and fascinating as that of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus (Lk 24:13-35). It is like a microcosm of the Church itself. It is filled with imagery that is pertinent not only to the Easter season, but to every day in the Church’s life. In fact, scholars suggest that the narrative is largely catechetical and liturgical in nature, fitting well in the post-Easter context of mystagogy, deepening one’s appreciation and understanding of the faith.

Four Revealing Details

While, reflecting on this story over many years, I have come to realize that it contains an incredible number of details that pertain to the Church’s ongoing life of faith. I only have space to focus on four of them here that seem particularly pertinent to this liturgical year and the Year of Faith we celebrate.

• Word and SacramentRead More »