Exult, Let Them Exult!

 

Resurrexit sicut dixit, Alleluia!  He has risen as He said, Alleluia!

The whole of creation joins the entire Church as we rejoice in the Resurrection of Our Lord from the dead.  These beautiful days of the Triduum have been filled with Gregorian chants which have enriched the Church for centuries, in some cases for more than a thousand years.  The poetry of chants like Nos Autem (based on a verse from Galatians as well as Psalm 67), Vexilla Regis (569), and Victimae Paschali (1039) move our hearts and minds to Continue reading

Alleluia! He Is Risen!

Mystic_Marriage

Exult, let them exult, the hosts of heaven,
exult, let Angel ministers of God exult,
let the trumpet of salvation sound aloud our mighty King’s triumph!

Be glad, let earth be glad, as glory floods her,
ablaze with light from her eternal King,
let all corners of the earth be glad,
knowing an end to gloom and darkness.

The entire Church rejoices as the Light of our Risen Savior drives away the darkness of this night!

We wait all year for the Easter Vigil Mass, the mother of all feasts:  The anticipation, the joy, the hope, the thanksgiving, and the return of Our Lord in the Eucharist.  Listen to the beautiful words of the Exsultet and rejoice as all of creation welcomes its Creator, risen from the dead.  Alleluia!

Exult, let them exult, the hosts of heaven,
exult, let Angel ministers of God exult,
let the trumpet of salvation sound aloud our mighty King’s triumph!

Be glad, let earth be glad, as glory floods her,
ablaze with light from her eternal King,
let all corners of the earth be glad,
knowing an end to gloom and darkness.

Rejoice, let Mother Church also rejoice,
arrayed with the lighting of his glory,
let this holy building shake with joy,
filled with the mighty voices of the peoples.

Therefore, dearest friends,
standing in the awesome glory of this holy light,
invoke with me, I ask you, the mercy of God almighty,
that he who has been pleased to number me,
though unworthy, among the Levites,
may pour into me his light unshadowed,
that I may sing this candle’s perfect praises.

V/: The Lord be with you.
R/: And with your spirit.
V/: Lift up your hearts.
R/: We lift them up to the Lord.
V/: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
R/: It is right and just.

It is truly right and just,
with ardent love of mind and heart,
and with devoted service of our voice,
to acclaim our God invisible, the almighty Father,
and Jesus Christ, our Lord, his Son, his Only Begotten.

Who for our sake paid Adam’s debt to the eternal Father,
and pouring out his own dear Blood
wiped clean the record of our ancient sinfulness.

These then are the feasts of Passover,
in which is slain the Lamb, the one true Lamb,
whose Blood anoints the doorposts of believers.

This is the night, when once you led our forebears,
Israel’s children, from slavery in Egypt
and made them pass dry-shod through the Red Sea.

This is the night that with a pillar of fire banished the darkness of sin.

This is the night that even now, throughout the world,
sets Christian believers apart from worldly vices and from the gloom of sin,
lending them to grace, and joining them to his holy ones.

This is the night when Christ broke the prison-bars of death,
and rose victorious from the underworld.
Our birth would have been no gain, had we not been redeemed.

O wonder of your humble care for us!
O love, O charity beyond all telling,
to ransom a slave you gave away your Son!

O truly necessary sin of Adam, destroyed completely by the Death of Christ!
O happy fault that earned so great, so glorious a Redeemer!
O truly blessed night, worthy alone to know the time and hour
when Christ rose from the underworld!

This is the night of which it is written:

The night shall be as bright as day, dazzling is the night for me, and full of gladness.

The sanctifying power of this night dispels all wickedness,
washes faults away, restores innocence to the fallen, and joy to mourners,
drives out hatred, fosters concord, and brings down the mighty.

On this, your night of grace, O holy Father,
accept this candle, a solemn offering,
the work of bees and of your servants’ hands,
an evening sacrifice of praise, this gift from your most holy Church.

But now we know the praises of this pillar,
which glowing fire ignites for God’s honour,
a fire into many flames divided,
yet never dimmed by sharing of its light,
for it is fed by melting wax,
drawn out by mother bees to build a torch so precious.

O truly blessed night,
when things of heaven are wed to those of earth,
and divine to the human.

Therefore, O Lord, we pray you that this candle,
hallowed to the honour of your name,
may persevere undimmed,
to overcome the darkness of this night.

Receive it as a pleasing fragrance,
and let it mingle with the lights of heaven.

You are Morning Star that never sets
find this flame still burning:
replace Christ, you Morning Star,
who came back from the hell,
and shed his new light on all mankind,
your star, who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen

Happy Feast Day, Pope Francis!

Aside

St. GeorgeHappy Feast Day, Pope Francis!  Today is the feast of St. George the Martyr, patron saint of Jorge Bergoglio.

Faithful servant of God and invincible martyr, Saint George;
favored by God with the gift of faith, and inflamed with an ardent love of Christ, thou didst fight valiantly against the dragon of pride, falsehood, and deceit. Neither pain nor torture, sword nor death could part thee from the love of Christ. I fervently implore thee, for the sake of this love, to help Our Holy Father Pope Francis, by thy intercession, to overcome the temptations that surround him, and to bear bravely the trials that oppress him, so that he may patiently carry the cross which is placed upon him, and govern with fidelity those entrusted to his care; and let neither distress nor difficulties separate him from the love of Our Lord Jesus Christ, that he may build Your church into a sacrament of unity, love, and peace for all the world.  Valiant champion of the Faith, assist him in the combat against evil, that he may win the crown promised to them that persevere unto the end. 

 

Continue reading

A testimony to unconditional love

Pope Francis delivers Easter Urbi et Orbi messageToday Pope Francis delivered the Urbi et Orbi message and blessing to the city of Rome and the world.  Here is the English translation of his message:

Dear Brothers and Sisters, a Happy and Holy Easter!

The Church throughout the world echoes the angel’s message to the women: “Do not be afraid! I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised… Come, see the place where he lay” (Mt 28:5-6).

This is the culmination of the Gospel, it is the Good News par excellence: Jesus, who was crucified, is risen! This event is the basis of our faith and our hope. If Christ were not Continue reading

Alleluia! Christ is Risen!

 

Christ appearing to the Virgin, from the Miraflores Altarpiece, Rogier van der Weyden, c.1442-1445

The Lord is arisen indeed, Alleluia!

A very blessed Easter to all of you!  The tomb is empty, which means Jesus is back in our tabernacle and all is right with the world.  Father Phillips brought Him back last night after the Easter Vigil and we had the chapel ready with fresh lilies and a gleaming tabernacle, which Sr. Grace Marie lovingly polished in anticipation of Our Lord’s return.

Today also happens to be our Rev. Mother Angelica’s 91st birthday!  Please say a prayer for her today, and join us in thanking God for the gift of her life.  Raymond Arroyo had a lovely little tribute video on The World Over this past week, which we want to share with you.  These are great clips of Mother and her personality shines through: funny, feisty, and full of love for God.  We love you, Reverend Mother, and we are so grateful for your life and your example!

 

Wednesday with Pope Francis

A good way to mark this midpoint in the Easter Octave is to spend some time with Pope Francis.  Below is his address at the Wednesday General Audience and his remarks at the Wednesday Regina Coeli, courtesy of Vatican Radio.

From the General Audience:

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Today we turn to the Catechism of the Year of Faith. In the Creed we repeat this phrase: “He rose again on the third day, in accordance with the Scriptures”. This is the very event that we are celebrating: the Resurrection of Jesus, the center of the Christian message that has resounded since the beginning and has been handed down so that it may reach us today. Saint Paul writes to the Christians of Corinth: “For I handed on to you …what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures; that he was buried; that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures; that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve”(1 Cor 15:3-5). This brief confession of faith announces the Paschal Mystery, with the first appearances of the Risen Christ to Peter and the Twelve: the Death and Resurrection of Jesus is the heart of our hope. Without this faith in the Death and Resurrection of Jesus our hope would be weak, but it wouldn’t even be hope, the Death and Resurrection of Jesus is the heart of our hope. The Apostle says: “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is vain; you are still in your sins” (v. 17).  Continue reading

When one day is simply not enough

adamevechristHow can our poor minds even begin to understand the enormity of Easter, called by early Christians ‘The Feast of Feasts’.

The wonder and joy of Easter cannot be contained in one day, it must spill out into many
days of celebration!  The Church shows us just how important and central to our faith this feast is, by mandating a full Octave (from the Latin word octava, eight) of celebration.  Christmas is the only other feast that does so.  Eight days of celebrating!

Those of us who pray the Divine office pray the same psalms of Easter Sunday for eight days to underscore this wonderful truth.

As our brothers and sisters in the Jewish faith celebrate the Feast of Passover for seven days, as commanded by God to Moses in Exodus, we as Christians, can do no less on this solemn sacred Feast of Easter, and in fact,we take it one step further, one day further.

The Church Fathers speak of the number seven as the ‘total of temporal existence’.  The great Saint Augustine speaks of the eighth day of the octave as ‘taking us out of time and into eternity’.  Jesus leads us into that eternity, into that eternal light.  Each day gives us the opportunity to live with our Lord in that eternal reality, being in the world, but not of it.  As Adam was pulled from his prison of darkness into the light by the very Author of Light, the New Adam, we too are freed to walk in that Light of truth and grace, we can live in that eternal reality in a very authentic way, each and every day.

As the Octave takes us into rest of the fifty days of this Easter season, let us really rejoice in the true knowledge of a very real hope, the hope and joy only Jesus can bring!