Baptism Is Only The Beginning

The-Baptism-of-ChristThe-Baptism-of-ChristAt the Baptism of Jesus, God the Father proclaims in a loud voice, "This is my Beloved Son, Listen to Him". Jesus, as the Divine Son ,God, had no need to be baptized, but it is how He chose to begin His Public Ministry and show us the importance of our own baptism. Each of us was made Holy as sons and daughters of God when the baptismal water cleansed us of original sin, and if we were older at the time of our baptism, it washed us clean of every sin we had ever committed since our natural birth, but our baptism is only the beginning.

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Epiphany Blessing of the Monastery

DSC 0129The star burned like a flame, pointing the way to God, the King of kings; the wise men saw the sign and brought their gifts in homage to their great King.

The Solemnity of Epiphany is celebrated with great joy in our adoration monasteries, as the Magi were the first gentiles to "adore the Lord". Led into Bethlehem by obeying the guidance of the star, the wise men "rejoiced with very great joy," as the evangelist has told us: "and entering the house, found the child with Mary, His mother; and falling down they worshipped Him; and opening their treasures they presented to Him gifts, gold, frankincense and myrrh." They adored God in the form of a little child, and we adore Him truly present in the Eucharist!

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We Are A Holy Family Now

la-sangrada-familiaWhen we think THE Holy Family, we automatically think of Jesus, Mary and Joseph and we all expect to hear a homily about them this Sunday. After praying about it, I decided to talk about another holy family, the Church, of which we are all members. St Paul in his writings, likens us all to members of the one body of which we are all a part. A body has different parts with different functions, so too does a family. When a part of a body is in pain, the whole body suffers. When a part of a body is missing, the whole body is handicapped. Many parts of the Mystical Body, the Church, are missing or not functioning properly today and the Church suffers as a family because of it.

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Pitch His Tent In The Sun

pitch-tent-in-sunOften and in many ways the Lord used to speak through the prophets. Among other things, God said: I think thoughts of peace and not of affliction. But what did men respond, thinking thoughts of affliction and knowing nothing of peace? They said: Peace, peace, there is no peace. This response made the angels of peace weep bitterly, saying: Lord, who has believed our message? But now men believe because they see with their own eyes, and because God’s testimony has now become even more credible. He has gone so far as to pitch his tent in the sun so even the dimmest eyes see him.

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The Gift Not The Wrappings

10789-no-17-scenes-from-the-life-of-chri-giotto-di-bondoneSince there are so many different Mass Scriptures at Christmas, depending on which of the several Masses you may attend, I am choosing only a line from the gospel from the Midnight Mass. It is a line familiar with most of us, even with those who are not regular church attendee’s. "You will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger." St. Luke 2:12

This is the season when we all give gifts. They are all beautifully wrapped and some wrappings are more elaborate than others.  We wouldn’t think of wrapping a diamond ring in a brown paper bag, it is usually wrapped inside a beautiful case lined with silk. What would we think of somebody who raved with joy about the wrappings and then discarded the real gift of the diamond inside? Even the most inexpensive gifts are wrapped, we hand our gift to our friends with some kind of wrapping: so does God.

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While All Things Were In Midnight Silence

Virgin of KlokočovThis, Lord, is your Word to us, this is your all-powerful message: while all things were in midnight silence (that is, were in the depths of error), he came from his royal throne, the stern conqueror of error and the gentle apostle of love.

Everything he did and everything he said on earth, even enduring the insults, the spitting, the buffeting – the cross and the grave – all of this was actually you speaking to us in your Son, appealing to us by your love and stirring up our love for you.

You know that this disposition could not be forced on men's hearts, my God, since you created them; it must rather be elicited. And this, for the further reason that there is no freedom where there is compulsion, and where freedom is lacking, so too is righteousness.

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God Speaks to the Contemplative and Silent Heart

 

god-speaks-silence-olamSilence.

Leave behind the worldly noise that assails your mind and soul and find a quiet place to seek the Lord and listen in silence. God speaks to the contemplative and silent heart.

Jesus was born into the world during the quiet of the night, and He shall be born in our hearts in the silence of the Father’s Presence within and around us.

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Media Apostles, Totus Tuus This Christmas

globe-lamps-lower1We'd like to extend a special prayer of thanksgiving to all good people who work to incarnate Christ's message through media -- classical as in painting, art, music, and new media, such as blogging, vlogging, digital art, and film.

Each time you strive to bring about a 'good work' or mission,  you labor to give life to a 'child' that carries within the image of the work of Christ.  Your travails are fraught with struggles and illuminations, with hardship and with the joy of God's hand which you sense.  It is a pain of labor to bring about life.

Like Herod, evil will be jealous of the power your work represents, its efficacy. You may be forced to flee to a foreign land and there raise your 'child' imprinted with the Imago Dei.

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Reflect the Brightness of the Lord

reflect-christ-mirror-olamWe are supposed to reflect, like a mirror the brightness of the Lord.

Do we realize that He dwells within our souls as in a temple when we are in the state of grace?

Jesus came on Christmas into a lowly stable at Bethlehem.  When He comes into my heart, does He find a warm, welcoming home?

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The Paradox of Joy in Our Time

sr-agnes-gaudete-sundayWe wait in joyful hope for our Savior. Mary believed, and by her faith, God’s Will was done in her.  It is the same for us;  If we have faith in His promises and are faithful to His Will, we will see our hopes fulfilled and will attain our deepest desire - intimate union with God.

Pope Saint Paul VI reminds us of the authentic nature of joy in his 1975 encyclical, GAUDETE IN DOMINO, On Christian Joy.   Joy can and must exist even in the midst of travails as it is sustained by the Holy Spirit, a "presentiment of the Divine Mystery".

And yet joy also contains a paradox when we look at the suffering of our times.

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Join in the Joy

If you feel you may have a vocation to our life of adoration and contemplation in the rich Clarian tradition of humility and service then please contact our Vocation Directress.

Te Deum Laudamus!

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Our Lady of the Angels
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Hanceville, AL 35077

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