Friday, May 15, 2015

Ascension/Pentecost Novena


Presume a rant here about the movement of Ascension Day to the nearest Sunday, fill in whatever you want...............

...And another thing about "Ascension Sunday", is it makes a nonsense of the idea of the Novena. The prayer of nine days used to be basic of much Catholic devotional life. All Novena have their basis in the nine days between Ascension and Pentecost when the Mother of God sat in prayer with the Apostles to await the coming of the Holy Spirit. It is bad enough that there is no Octave after Pentecost, which of course means that Trinity Sunday hangs around in Ordinary Time like a white rag in a green field unattached to the Easter Season of which the revelation of the Trinity is the natural outcome.

Both moves serve to lessen the centrality of Pentecost to the Christian Mystery.

At times one wonders whether the 'great reformers' were either mad or drunk - methystos as opposed to amethysts of course.

I am offering the Novena this year for vocation to the priesthood in my diocese, it is a powerful time of prayer, and I firmly expect God to be generous in his blessings

Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth.
O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, Through Christ Our Lord, Amen.

6 comments:

Thomas said...

How can any time be called "ordinary" since Jesus is risen from the dead and the Holy Spirit has been poured out on us? And why do we have to go back in our missals and pick up where we left off with routine "weeks of the year" as if Christmas and Easter were just unconnected episodes or intrusions into the otherwise regular course of events? Shouldn't the Church's year be one continuous cycle and mystery from Advent to Christ The King?

JARay said...

Thank you for the prayer of invocation to the Holy Spirit. It is a prayer that I say daily. I can still remember sitting in my Primary School and the Nun who was the Head, talking to us about what it meant to be "truly wise". That took place over 70 years ago!
Here in Australasia, Ascension Thursday has been moved to the Sunday and instead we have the Feast of St. Matthias who was the one elected to take the place of Judas, as an Apostle.
One thing also comes to mind and that it the question of how many Apostles were there? Matthias replaced Judas and then we have also St. Paul telling us that he too was an Apostle "born out of time"! I too can remember that there were thirteen in a set of Apostle spoons and that a "baker's dozen" is thirteen.

viterbo said...

What possible advantage could be gained by moving Ascension Day to the nearest Sunday?

"But what possible advantage can be gained for the pastoral care of the faithful by changing the feast days of the saints in the Church calendar, changing the way of counting Sundays during the liturgical year, or even changing the words of Consecration? What possible advantage can be gained by introducing a new Order of Readings and abolishing the old one, or by making minor and unimportant adjustments to the Traditional Rite, and then finally, by publishing a new Missal? Was all this really done because of pastoral concern about the souls of the faithful, or did it not rather represent a radical breach with the Traditional Rite, to prevent the further use of traditional liturgical texts and thus to make the celebration of the 'Tridentine Mass' impossible, because it no longer reflected the new spirit moving through the Church?" Monsignor Klaus Gamber: 'Reform of the Roman liturgy'.

Paul Hellyer said...

Sunday Mass was completly obliterated by first Holy Communion. Hoards of the unchurched families and friends. Loud conversations. Cameras flashing. Parents and Grandparents all dressed up and smiling. No where to sit for the regular parishioners. No respect for sacred place. Holy Mass was a sort of incidental while the rite of passage Catholic style took place. Cameras flashing again. Any chance for prayer? Hardly. Any celebration of Our Lord's Ascencion? Well not really. The priest did his level best to remind us of this great feast. But it was overshadowed by the big family event.
Solution? 1) More prayer by bishops and priests. 2) Move Ascencion day back to Thursday where it has always been and should never have moved.

Paul Hellyer said...

Viterbo. Your quote is so right. What a mess we are in. It's time the top clergy started praying and studying tradition more.

viterbo said...

@Paul. Cardinal Ratzinger wrote a preface for a new edition of Monsignor Gamber's book after the author had died:

"What happened after the Council? . . . in the place of ‘liturgy as the fruit of development’ came fabricated liturgy. We abandoned the organic, living process of growth and development over centuries, and replaced it—as in a manufacturing process—with a fabrication, a banal on-the-spot product. Gamber, with the vigilance of a true prophet and the courage of a true witness, opposed this falsification, and, thanks to his incredibly rich knowledge, indefatigably taught us about the living fullness of a true liturgy."