PASTOR’S CORNER JAN. 10, 2011
Now that we have passed from the Christmas Season we are entering a time in the Church Year called “Ordinary Time.” Over the next few weeks I will be explaining the concept and other elements of our faith and religion as well as preparing us for the new changes in the Liturgy that will begin to be implemented during Advent of 2011.
Why We Do What We Do!
Sing the “Great Amen”.
Since Vatican II the laity has been encouraged to take a more active role in the celebration of the Mass, especially in sung responses
Perhaps the most important of these responses is the “Great Amen” which comes at the end of the Eucharistic Prayer. During this time the community silently opens itself to the “real presence” of the Lord Jesus in the form of bread and wine while the priest prays the words of Consecration. The “Great Amen” is much more than a simple “so be it”, it is your chance to respond to this holy event in a joyful acclamation which proclaims that you believe that the Lord Jesus is truly and totally present within the bread and wine and within the believing community. It is also our invitation to assent to and surrender ourselves to the gift of the Father.
When we do not participate in this acclamation with joy and celebration we are depriving ourselves and those around us of our own gift of expressed faith. Singing is the most joyful means of expressing this belief, hence the “Great Amen” should always be sung with joyful vigor. It is our “yes” to the presence of Jesus Christ.
This week and next we celebrated many feast days, including the “Holy Name of Jesus.” This feast was actually started by St. Bernadine of Siena in the early 1400’s. It was also at this time that “IHS” was included on many chasubles and the word “Jesus” was added to the Hail Mary. “IHS” means “Iesus hominum salvator” or “Jesus savior of humankind.” As we closed out our Christmas celebration with the Feast of Epiphany and the Baptism of the Lord we were reminded of why Jesus did come: to be savior of all humankind. We assist in this great event by our adoration and reception of the sacraments which are available every day.
Words to live by: Remember to be “FAT” with the Lord. (Faithful, Available and Teachable).