Sunday, December 13, 2009

Gaudete Sunday

Gaudete in Domino semper

Rejpice in the Lord always

As Christmas draws near, the Church emphasizes the joy which should be in our hearts at all that the birth of our Saviour means....

We light the third candle in our Advent wreath. The rose candle.

Rose marks a break from the usual violet or purple of the penitential side of Advent.

We pause. We rejoice. We realise how close we are to Christmas, to the joys of celebrating the birth of Our Lord.

The lighting of the third candle in the wreath, the priest wearing rose vestments, the readings about St John the Baptist, all these remind us to prepare for Christmas, for the coming of Our Lord...and of joy and rejoicing.

Externals mirroring our internal life of prayer as Christians.

And lest you think that simple things like lighting a rose candle or wearing rose vestments be of no significiance to our lives as Christians..well... Here I would simply make note that vestments are another branch of the sacred arts and we should not be reductionistic and secularize our considerations of them. Their symbolism, their dignity and beauty are equally as pertinent to the matter of the sacred liturgy as the matter of sacred architecture, music, painting or sculpture; they too can be bearers of the sacred, lending to (or, indeed, taking away from) our liturgical worship. We should indeed give them thought then, considering what does and does not lend to the dignity and gravitas of the liturgical rites; the rites in which the Church offers her public worship to God, and where we give our public witness and expression to that divine worship.
New Liturgical Movement

1 comment:

Chris said...

Today in Sunday school we taught the children about the angels who visited the shepherds and how they rejoiced at the birth of Jesus. It reminded me of the joy we share at Christmas time and how we can rejoice like the angels did. I especially liked "We pause. We rejoice.", in what you wrote, because we do need to stop and contemplate that amazing, holy birth to prepare and really rejoice with great joy. Thank you for a wonderfully uplifting post.