Sunday, December 31, 2017

Sunday fo the Octave of Christmas 2017

Today is also the Feast of the Holy Family.
A link has been added tracing the history of this feast.

"On the seventh day of true love gave to me...
seven swans a swimming..."

Symbolism: The seven swans a swimming
refers to the Gifts of the Holy Spirit:
Wisdom, Understanding, Courage,
Wonder & Awe, Right Judgement,
Knowledge and Reverence

Scripture: "And the Spirit of the Lord will rest upon him:
the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel
and fortitude, the spirit of knowledge and piety."
Isaiah 11:2

Readings for the Day:
Sirach 3:2-6, 12-14
Psalm 128
Colossians 3:12-21
Luke 2:22-40

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Saturday of the Octave of Christmas 2017

"On the sixth day of Christmas...
my true love gave to me...
six geese a laying..."

Symbolism: The six geese a laying symbolizes
the six days of creation.

Scripture: "And God saw everything that he had made. And they were very good. And it became evening and morning, the sixth day. And so the heavens and the earth were completed, with all their adornment. And on the seventh day, God fulfilled his work, which he had made. And on the seventh day he rested from all his work, which he had accomplished."
Genesis 1:31 and 2:1-2

Readings for the Day:
1 John 2:12-17
Psalm 96
Luke 2:36-40

Friday, December 29, 2017

Friday of the Octave of Christmas 2017

Today is also the Memorial for St. Thomas Becket.
A link has been added about this saint.

"On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me.....
five gold rings......"

Symbolism: The five gold rings is symbolic of the Pentateuch or Torah....
the first five books of the Bible.
(Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers & Deuteronomy)

Scripture: "And they read from the book of the law of God, distinctly and plainly, so as to be understood. And when it was read, they did understand."
Nehemiah 8:8

Readings for the Day:
1 John 2:3-11
Psalm 96
Luke 2:22-35

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Thursday of the Octave of Christmas 2017

Today is the Ordinary Feast of the Holy Innocents.
Two more links have been added. One with information
about the Slaughter of the Innocents and another with the
Coventry Carol, a Christmas song
about the Slaughter of the Innocents.

"On the fourth day of Christmas....
My true love gave to me.......
Four calling birds........"

Symbolism: The Four Calling Birds stand for
the Four Gospel Writers...
Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.

Scripture: "And he said to them:
“Go forth to the whole world and
preach the Gospel to every creature."
Mark 16:15

Readings of the Day:
1 John 1:5-2:2
Psalm 124
Matthew 2:13-18

Wednesday of the Octave of Christmas 2018

Today is also a Feast of St. John the Apostle and Evangelist.
A link has been added giving the history of this saint.

"On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me...
three French Hens...."

Symbolism: The three French Hens are symbols for the Three Things that Last: Faith, Hope & Love.

Scripture: "But for now, these three continue: faith, hope, and love. And the greatest of these is love."
1 Corinthians 13:13

Readings for the Day:
1 John 1:1-4
Psalm 97
John 20:1a, 2-8

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Tuesday of the Octave of Christmas 2017

Today is also the Feast of St. Stephen.
A link has been added about the life of this first martyred saint.

Today, being St. Stephen's Day, is the day on which the song GOOD KING WENCESLAS was to have taken place. King Wenceslas was a kind, Christian king who was martyred, as well. A link has been added about his life and another link has been added where you may hear the carol about this caring saint.

"On the second day of Christmas,
  my true love gave to me.....
  Two Turtle Doves..."

Symbolism: TWO TURTLE DOVES stands for the two different sections of the Bible....the OLD TESTAMENT and the NEW TESTAMENT.

Scripture: "And Moses returned from the mountain, carrying the two tablets of the testimony in his hand, written on both sides, and accomplished by the work of God. Also, the writing of God was engraved on the tablets."
Exodus 32:15-16

Readings of the Day:
Acts 6:8-10; 7:54-59
Psalm 31
Matthew 10:17-22

Monday, December 25, 2017

Christmas Day 2017

Merry Christmas!
(The readings for the day are listed below.)
Today begins the Church's celebration of the 12 Days of the Christmas Season...the 12 days until the celebration of the Epiphany.

Centuries ago, the song THE 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS, was used as a way for Christians to share their faith with their children. Each symbol represented an aspect of the faith. To the right are links explaining the historical grounds for this tradition. We will use the words of the song on this site as our way to share in the celebration of the Birth of our Savior.

"On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me...
A Partridge in a Pear Tree."

Symbol: The Partridge in a Pear Tree is the sacrificed Savior, Jesus Christ, on the "tree" of the Cross.

Scripture: "And they arrived at the place which is called Golgotha, which is the place of Calvary. And they gave him wine to drink, mixed with gall. And when he had tasted it, he refused to drink it. Then, after they had crucified him, they divided his garments, casting lots, in order to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet, saying: “They divided my garments among them, and over my vestment they cast lots.” And sitting down, they observed him. And they set his accusation above his head, written as: THIS IS JESUS, KING OF THE JEWS. Then two robbers were crucified with him: one on the right and one on the left. But those passing by blasphemed him, shaking their heads, and saying: “Ah, so you would destroy the temple of God and in three days rebuild it! Save your own self. If you are the Son of God, descend from the cross.” And similarly, the leaders of the priests, with the scribes and the elders, mocking him, said: “He saved others; he cannot save himself. If he is the King of Israel, let him descend now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusted in God; so now, let God free him, if he wills him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’ ” Then, the robbers who were crucified with him also reproached him with the very same thing. Now from the sixth hour, there was darkness over the entire earth, even until the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour, Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying: “Eli, Eli, lamma sabacthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” Then certain ones who were standing and listening there said, “This man calls upon Elijah.” And one of them, running quickly, took a sponge and filled it with vinegar, and he set it on a reed and he gave it to him to drink. Yet truly, the others said, “Wait. Let us see whether Elijah will come to free him.” Then Jesus, crying out again with a loud voice, gave up his life. And behold, the veil of the temple was torn into two parts, from top to bottom. And the earth was shaken, and the rocks were split apart. And the tombs were opened. And many bodies of the saints, which had been sleeping, arose. And going out from the tombs, after his resurrection, they went into the holy city, and they appeared to many. Now the centurion and those who were with him, guarding Jesus, having seen the earthquake and the things that were done, were very fearful, saying: “Truly, this was the Son of God.”
Matthew 27:33-54

Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 52:7-10
Psalm 98
Hebrews 1:1-6
John 1:1-18

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

~A special video link has been added for Christmas Eve showing the Real Meaning of Christmas.  It is produced by the CATHOLICS COME HOME Movement. Please take a moment to enjoy this video.~

Jesse Tree Story: JESUS
Jesse Tree Symbol: CHI-RHO
(The symbol of the Chi-Rho is a Greek word that makes up the first three letters of  the name of Christ. It is considered the royal monogram of Jesus.)

Scripture: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and God was the Word. He was with God in the beginning. All things were made through Him, and nothing that was made was made without Him. Life was in Him, and Life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. There was a man sent by God, whose name was John. He arrived as a witness to offer testimony about the Light, so that all would believe through him. He was not the Light, but he was to offer testimony about the Light. The true Light, which illuminates every man, was coming into this world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, and the world did not recognize him. He went to his own, and his own did not accept him. Yet whoever did accept him, those who believed in his name, he gave them the power to become the sons of God. These are born, not of blood, nor of the will of flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh, and he lived among us, and we saw his glory, glory like that of an only-begotten Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. John offers testimony about him, and he cries out, saying: “This is the one about whom I said: ‘He who is to come after me, has been placed ahead of me, because he existed before me.’ ” And from his fullness, we all have received, even grace for grace. For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one ever saw God; the only-begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he himself has described him.
John 1:1-18

Commentary: Jesus is the climax of the family tree. Jesus is the Savior if the world!
  "For Unto Us a Child is Born..." Gloria in Eccelsius Deo!

As a note, the Religious Interactive Page will continue throughout the Christmas Season.
We wish you all a very blessed Christmas!~

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Fourth Sunday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: MARY
Jesse Tree Symbol: A WHITE LILY

Scripture: "Then, in the sixth month, the Angel Gabriel was sent by God, to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the name of the virgin was Mary. And upon entering, the Angel said to her: “Hail, full of grace. The Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women.” And when she had heard this, she was disturbed by his words, and she considered what kind of greeting this might be. And the Angel said to her: “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found grace with God. Behold, you shall conceive in your womb, and you shall bear a son, and you shall call his name: JESUS. He will be great, and he will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father. And he will reign in the house of Jacob for eternity. And his kingdom shall have no end.” Then Mary said to the Angel, “How shall this be done, since I do not know man?”
And in response, the Angel said to her: “The Holy Spirit will pass over you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. And because of this also, the Holy One who will be born of you shall be called the Son of God. And behold, your cousin Elizabeth has herself also conceived a son, in her old age. And this is the sixth month for her who is called barren. For no word will be impossible with God.” Then Mary said: “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. Let it be done to me according to your word.” And the Angel departed from her."

Luke 1:26-38

Mary was the temple God prepared for his Son, more beautiful than Solomon's magnificent temple in Jerusalem.  She was the woman whose seed, Christ, would crush the serpent's head, as God had promised. 
The symbol is the lily, a sign of purity.
Readings for the Day:
2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8-12, 14, 16
Psalm 89
Romans 16:25-27
Luke 1:26-38

Third Saturday of Advent 2017

     O Come, O Come Emmanuel
     And ransom captive Israel
     That mourns in lonely exile here
     Until the Son of God appear
Jesse Tree Story: JOSEPH

Scripture: "Then Joseph, her husband, since he was just and was not willing to hand her over, preferred to send her away secretly. But while thinking over these things, behold, an Angel of the Lord appeared to him in his sleep, saying: “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to accept Mary as your wife. For what has been formed in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she shall give birth to a son. And you shall call his name JESUS. For he shall accomplish the salvation of his people from their sins.” Now all this occurred in order to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: “Behold, a virgin shall conceive in her womb, and she shall give birth to a son. And they shall call his name Emmanuel, which means: God is with us.” Then Joseph, arising from sleep, did just as the Angel of the Lord had instructed him, and he accepted her as his wife.”
Matthew :19-24

Commentary: Through the story of Joseph, we learn to trust in God's Will. Although Joseph could have quietly divorced Mary, he chose instead to stand firm by her side, will God's help....even if he did not understand God's Will.

Readings of the Day:
Malachi 3:1-4, 23-24
Psalm 25
Luke 1:57-66

Friday, December 22, 2017

Third Friday of Advent 2017

O Antiphon: O Come, Desire of Nations

     O come, Desire of nations, bind
     In one the hearts of all mankind
     Bid Thou our sad divisions cease
     And be Thyself our King of Peace

Jesse Tree Story: JOHN THE BAPTIST
Jesse Tree Symbol: SCALLOPED SHELL

Scripture: "Then, in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being procurator of Judea, and Herod tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Ituraea and of the region of Trachonitis and Lysanias, tetrarch of Abilene, under the high priest Annas and Caiaphas; the word of the Lord came to John, the son of Zechariah, in the wilderness. Prepare the way of the Lord. Make straight His paths. Every valley shall be filled and every mountain and hill shall be brought low. And what is crooked shall be made straight. And the rough paths shall be made into level ways. And all flesh shall see the salvation of God. Therefore, he said to the crowd that went out in order to be baptized by him. "You progeny of vipers. Who told you to fell from the approaching wrath? So then, produce fruits that are worthy of repentance. And do not begin to say 'We have Abram as our father.' For I tell you that God has the power to raise up sons of Abram from the stones. For even now the ace has been placed at the roof of the trees. Therefore, every tree that does not produce good fruit shall be cut down and cast into the fire.' And the crowd was questioning him saying: 'What then should we do?' But in response, he said to them, 'Whoever has two coats, let him give to those who do not have. And whoever has food, let him act similarly.' Now the tax collectors also came to be baptized, and they said to him, "Teacher, what should we do?' But he said to them, 'You should do nothing more than what has been appointed to you.' Then the soldiers also questioned him, saying: 'And what should we do?' And he answered them, "You should strike no one, and you should not make false accusations. And be content with your pay.' Now all were thinking about John in their hearts and the people were supposing that he was the Christ. John responded by saying to everyone: 'Indeed I baptize you with water. But there will arrive one stronger than me, the laces of whose shoes I am not worthy to loosen. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fan is in His hand. ANd He will purify His threshing floor. And He will gather the wheat into the barn. But the chaff He will burn with unquenchable fire.' Indeed, he also proclaimed other many things, exorting the people. But Herod, the tetrarch, when he was corrected by him concerning Herodias, his brother's wife, and concerning all the evils that Herod had done, added this also, above all else: that he confined John to prison."   
Luke 3:1-20

Commentary: As we continue to wait in our Advent, we are reminded to repent from sin. John plays a part in the prophecies of Isaiah. He was the "voice crying out in the wilderness." Listen...

Readings of the Day:
1 Samuel 1:24-28
1 Samuel 2
Luke 1:46-56

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Third Thursday of Advent 2017

     O Come Thou Dayspring from on high
     And cheer us by they drawing nigh
     Disperse the gloomy clouds of night    
     And death's dark shadow put to flight

Jesse Tree Story:  ELIZABETH
Jesse Tree Symbol:  MOTHER & CHILD

Scripture:  "And in those days, Mary, rising up, traveled quickly
into the hill country, to a city of Judah. And she entered into the
house of Zechariah, and she greeted Elizabeth.
And it happened that, as Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary,

the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the
Holy Spirit. And she cried out with a loud voice and said:
“Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of
your womb. And how does this concern me, so that the mother
of my Lord would come to me? For behold, as the voice of your
greeting came to my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.
And blessed are you who believed, for the things that were spoken
to you by the Lord shall be accomplished.” And Mary said: “
My soul magnifies the Lord. And my spirit leaps for joy in God
my Savior. For he has looked with favor on the humility of his
handmaid. For behold, from this time, all generations shall call me blessed.
For he who is great has done great things for me, and holy is his name.
And his mercy is from generation to generations for those who fear him.
He has accomplished powerful deeds with his arm. He has scattered the

arrogant in the intentions of their heart. He has deposed the powerful
from their seat, and he has exalted the humble. He has filled the hungry
with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has taken up his servant Israel, mindful of his mercy,
just as he spoke to our fathers: to Abraham and to his

offspring forever.” Then Mary stayed with her for about three months.
And she returned to her own house."
Luke 1:39-56

Commentary:  Elizabeth is one of the first persons to experience the Joy of Christ. As she feels her child, John, leap in her womb, she knows that her Savior is about to be born.

Readings of the Day:
Song of Songs 2:8-14
Psalm 33
Luke 1:39-45

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Third Wednesday of Advent 2017

~The O ANTIPHON for today is O COME, KEY OF DAVID~
     "O Come, thou Key of David, come
      And open wide our heavenly home
      Make safe the way hat leads on high
     And close the path of misery. REFRAIN.."

Jesse Tree Story:  GIDEON
Jesse Tree Symbol: PITCHER

Scripture: "And when they had sounded their trumpets in three places around the camp, and had broken their water pitchers, they held the lamps in their left hands, and sounded the trumpets in their right hands. And they cried out, “The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!” And each one was standing in his place throughout the camp of the enemies. And so the entire camp was in confusion; and they fled away, wailing and crying out."
Judges 7:20-21

God revealed his power to Gideon, who came from a poor family, by letting his army of 300 men defeat more than 100,000 at Midian.  Gideon followed the  Lord’s instruction to have his men approach the town with their torches hidden under pitchers.  The people of Midian were so startled when the pitchers were broken that many began fighting among themselves.  Gideon became a leader and judge, helping his people obey God’s true laws.
The symbol is a pitcher.Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 7:10-14
Psalm 24
Luke 1:26-38

Monday, December 18, 2017

Third Tuesday of Advent 2017

O Antiphon-  O Root of Jesse
"O come, Thou Rod of Jesse's stem. From every foe deliver them That trust thy mighty power to save, and give them victory o'er the grave." REFRAIN.

Jesse Tree Story: MICAH

Scripture: "And you, Bethlehem Ephrata, are a little one
among the thousands of Judah. From you will go forth
he who shall be the ruler in Israel, and his landing place
has been set from the beginning, from the days of eternity."
Micah 5:2

Commentary: The prophet Micah told us where Christ would be born.  "And you Bethlehem out of you shall He come forth unto me, that is to be the ruler in Israel." 

Readings for the Day:
Judges 13:2-7, 24-25
Psalm 71
Luke  1:5-35

Third Monday of Advent 2017

O Antiphon: O come, O come thou Lord of might, Who to Thy tribes on Sinai's height, in ancient times dids't give the law in cloud and majesty and awe. Refrain.
Jesse Tree Story: DANIEL
Jesse Tree Symbol: THE HOUR GLASS

Scripture: "And while I was still speaking and praying and
confessing my sins, and the sins of my people, Israel, and
offering my prayers in the sight of my God, on behalf of the
holy mountain of my God, as I was still speaking in prayer,
behold, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at
the beginning, flying swiftly, touched me at the time of the
evening sacrifice. And he instructed me, and he spoke to me
and said, “Now, Daniel, I have come forth to teach you and
to help you understand. At the beginning of your prayers,
the message came forth, yet I have come to explain it to you
because you are a man who is seeking. Therefore, you must
pay close attention to the message and understand the vision.
Seventy weeks of years are concentrated on your people and
on your holy city, so that transgression shall be finished, and
sin shall reach an end, and iniquity shall be wiped away, and
so that everlasting justice shall be brought in, and vision and
prophecy shall be fulfilled, and the Saint of saints shall be
anointed. Therefore, know and take heed: from the going forth
of the word to build up Jerusalem again, until the Christ leader,
there will be seven weeks of years, and sixty-two weeks of years;
and the wide path will be built again, and the walls, in a time of
anguish. And after sixty-two weeks of years, the Christ leader
will be slain. And the people who have denied him will not be
his. And the people, when their leader arrives, will destroy the
city and the sanctuary. And its end will be devastation, and,
after the end of the war, the desolation will be set up. But he
will confirm a covenant with many for one week of years;
and for half of the week of years, victim and sacrifice will
nearly cease; but there will be in the temple the abomination
of desolation. And the desolation will continue even to the
consummation and the end.”
Daniel 9:20-27

Commentary: Daniel was told in a vision the exact time when the Redeemer of the world would come. "From the going forth to build up Jerusalem again, unto Christ, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks." 

Readings of the Day:
Jeremiah 23: 5-8
Psalm 72
Matthew 1:18-25

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Third Sunday of Advent 2017

~Today is GAUDETE SUNDAY, Sunday of Rejoicing for Emmanuel will come.
"Rejoice, Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to you oh Israel." ~ ROSE CANDLE

~Today, we also begin the O ANTIPHONS during the LITURGY OF THE HOURS. This is a way to intensely prepare for the approaching CHRISTMAS SEASON. There will be a different "O ANTIPHON" posted each day until Christmas.

O Antiphon: O COME, O WISDOM from on high who orders all things mightily, to us the path of knowledge show and teach us in her ways to go.
Response: Rejoice, Rejoice, Emmanuel shall come to thee O Israel.

Jesse Tree Story: JONAH
Jesse Tree Symbol: THE WHALE
Scripture: "The waters surrounded me, even to the soul. The abyss has walled me in. The ocean has covered my head."
Jonah 2:6

"For just as Jonah was in the belly of the whale for three days and three nights, so shall the Son of Man be in the earth for three days and three nights."
Matthew 12:40

Commentary: Jesus used the story of Jonah, who was swallowed by a
whale and miraculously disgorged upon the shore on the third day,
to point out his own burial and resurrection. 
Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 61:1-2a, 10-11
Luke 1
1 Thessalonians 5:16-24
John 1:6-8, 19-28

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Second Saturday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: HABAKKUK
Jesse Tree Symbol: A WATCH TOWER

Scripture: "The burden that Habakkuk the prophet saw. How long, O Lord, shall I cry out, and you will not heed? Shall I shout to you while suffering violence, and you will not save? Why have you revealed to me iniquity and hardship, to see plunder and injustice opposite me? And there has been judgment, but the opposition is more powerful. Because of this, the law has been torn apart, and judgment does not persevere to its conclusion. For the impious prevail against the just. Because of this, a perverse judgment is issued. Gaze among the nations, and see. Admire, and be astounded. For a work has been done in your days, which no one will believe when it is told. For behold, I will raise up the Chaldeans, a bitter and swift people, marching across the width of the earth, to possess tabernacles not their own. It is dreadful and terrible. From themselves, judgment and their burden will issue. Their horses are more nimble than leopards and swifter than wolves in the evening; their horsemen will spread out. And then their horsemen will approach from far away; they will fly like the eagle, hurrying to devour. They will all approach towards the prey; their face is like a burning wind. And they will gather captives together like sand. And concerning kings, he will triumph, and sovereign rulers will be his laughingstock, and he will laugh over every fortress, and he will transport a rampart and seize it. Then his spirit will be altered, and he will cross over and fall. Such is his strength from his god. Have you not existed from the beginning, Lord my God, my holy one, and so we shall not die? Lord, you have stationed him for judgment, and you have establish that his strength will be swept away. Your eyes are pure, you do not behold evil, and you cannot look towards iniquity. Why do you look upon the agents of iniquity, and remain silent, while the impious is devouring one who is more just than himself? And you will make men like the fish of the sea and like the creeping things that have no ruler. He lifted up everything with his hook. He drew them in with his dragnet, and gathered them into his netting. Over this, he will rejoice and exult. For this reason, he will offer victims to his dragnet, and he will sacrifice to his netting. For through them, his portion has been made fat, and his meals elite. Because of this, therefore, he expands his dragnet and will not be lenient in continually putting to death the peoples. I will stand firm during my watch, and fix my position over the fortification. And I will observe carefully, to see what might be said to me and what I might respond to my opponent. I heard, and my stomach became troubled. My lips trembled at the voice. Let decay enter into my bones and gush forth from within me. Then I may rest in the day of tribulation, so that I may ascend to our people well-prepared. For the fig tree will not flower, and there will be no bud on the vines. The labor of the olive tree will be misleading, and the farmland will produce no food. The sheep will be cut off from the sheepfold, and there will be no herd at the manger. But I will rejoice in the Lord; and I will exult in God my Jesus. The Lord God is my strength. And he will set my feet like those of the stag. And he, the victor, will lead me beyond my high places while singing psalms.”
 Habakkuk 1:1-2:1, 3:16-19

Commentary: The prophet Habakkuk stood upon the watch tower and waited for the Anointed
One, revealing to God’s people that the Lord would end violence and wickedness.

Readings of the Day:
Sirach 48: 1-4, 9-11
Psalm 80
Matthew 17: 9a, 10-13

Friday, December 15, 2017

Second Friday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: ISAIAH
Jesse Tree Symbol: A RAIN CLOUD

Scripture: "Send down dew from above, O heavens, and let the clouds rain down upon the just! Let the earth open and spring forth a savior! And let justice rise up at once! I, the Lord, have created him."
Isaiah 45:8

Commentary: He foretold Christ's birth, life, mission and sufferings, death and resurrection. Once he prayed: "Let the clouds rain down on the Just. Let the earth be opened and bud forth a Savior." 

Readings for the Day:
Isaiah 48:17-16
Psalm 1
Matthew 11:16-19

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Second Thursday of Advent 2017

~Today is also the Feast of St. John of the Cross. Please click on the link to the right for more information about this saint.~

Jesse Tree Story: DAVID
Jesse Tree Symbol: STAR OF DAVID

Scripture: " But the Spirit of the Lord withdrew from Saul, and a wicked spirit from the Lord disturbed him. And the servants of Saul said to him: “Behold, an evil spirit from
God disturbs you. May our lord order, and your servants, who are before you, will seek a man skillful in playing a stringed instrument, so that when the evil spirit from the
Lord assails you, he may play with his hand, and you may bear it more easily.” And Saul said to his servants, “Then provide for me someone who can play well, and bring him
to me.” And one of the servants, responding, said: “Behold, I have seen the son of Jesse of Bethlehem, a skillful player, and very strong and robust, a man fit for war, and prudent in words, a handsome man. And the Lord is with him.” Therefore, Saul sent messengers to Jesse, saying, “Send to me your son David, who is in the pastures.” And so, Jesse took a donkey laden with bread, and a bottle of wine, and a kid from one of the goats, and he sent them, by the hand of his son David, to Saul. And David went to Saul, and stood before him. And he loved him exceedingly, and he made him his armor bearer.
And Saul sent to Jesse, saying: “Let David remain before my
sight. For he has found favor in my eyes.” And so, whenever  the evil spirit from the Lord assailed Saul, David took up his stringed instrument, and he struck it with his hand, and Saul was refreshed and uplifted. For the evil spirit withdrew from him."
1 Samuel 16:14-23

Commentary: David, the king and prophet, descended from the royal line of Christ. In David's psalms, he foretold many things about the coming of the Savior. 

Readings for the Day:
Isaiah 41:13-20
Psalm 145
Matthew 11:11-15

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Second Wednesday of Advent 2017

~Today is also the Feast of St. Lucy. Click on the link in the LINKS list for more information avout this saint.~

Jesse Tree Story: JESSE

Scripture: "And a rod will go forth from the root of Jesse, and a flower will ascend from his root."
Isaiah 11:1

Commentary: The prophet Isaiah foretold that the Savior
would be born from the root of Jesse and that he would sit
upon the throne of David.

Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 40:25-31
Psalm 103
Matthew 11:28-30

Monday, December 11, 2017

Second Tuesday of Advent 2017

~Today is also the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Click on the link for more information about this feast.~

Jesse Tree Symbol: MANNA

Scripture: And they set out from Elim. And the entire multitude of the sons of Israel arrived at the desert of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month, after they departed from the land of Egypt. And the entire congregation of the sons of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. And the sons of Israel said to them: “If only we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat around bowls of meat and ate bread until filled. Why have you led us away,
into this desert, so that you might kill the entire multitude with famine?” Then the Lord said to Moses: “Behold, I will rain down bread from heaven for you. Let the people go out and collect what is sufficient for each day, so that I may test them, as to whether or not they will walk in my law. But on the sixth day, let them prepare what they use for carrying, and let there be double what they were accustomed to collect on a single day.”
And Moses and Aaron said to the sons of Israel:
“In the evening, you will know that the Lord has led you away from the land of Egypt. And in the morning, you will see the glory of the Lord. For he has heard your murmuring against the Lord. But as for us, truly what are we, that you would whisper against us?” And Moses said: “In the evening, the Lord will give you flesh to eat, and in the morning, bread in fullness. For he has heard your murmurings that you have murmured against him. For what are we? Your murmuring is not against us, but against the Lord.” Moses also said to Aaron: “Say to the whole  congregation of the sons of Israel, ‘Approach before the Lord. For he has heard your murmuring.’ ”And when Aaron spoke to the entire assembly of the sons of Israel, they looked out toward the wilderness. And behold, the glory of the Lord appeared in a cloud.
Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: “I have heard the murmuring of the sons of Israel.

Say to them: ‘In the evening, you will eat flesh, and in the morning, you will be filled with bread. And you shall know that I am the Lord your God.’ ”Therefore, it happened in the evening: quails, rising up, covered the camp. Likewise, in the morning, a dew lay all around the camp. And when it had covered the face of the earth, it appeared, in the wilderness, small and as if crushed with a pestle, similar to hoar-frost on the ground.
When the sons of Israel had seen it, they said one to
another: “Manhu?” which means “What is this?” For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them: “This is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat. This is the word that the Lord has instructed. Let
each one collect as much of it as is sufficient to eat. One omer for each head. According to the number of your souls which live in a tent, so will you take of it.” And the sons of Israel did so. And they collected: some more, others less. And they measured by the measure of an omer. He who collected more, did not have too much; nor did he who prepared less, find too little. But each one gathered according to what they were able to eat. And Moses said to them, “Let no one leave any of it behind until morning.” And they did not listen to him, but they left some of it behind until morning, and it began to swarm
with worms, and it putrefied. And Moses became angry against them. Then each one collected, in the morning, as much as would be sufficient to eat. And after the sun became
hot, it melted. But on the sixth day, they collected a double portion, that is, two omers for each man. Then all the leaders among the multitude came, and they discoursed with Moses. And he said to them: “This is what the Lord has spoken: Tomorrow, the rest day of the Sabbath, has been sanctified to the Lord. Whatever would be done, do it now. And
whatever would be cooked, cook it now. Then anything that will have been left over, store it until morning.” And they did just as Moses had instructed, and it did notputrefy, nor were there any worms found in it. And Moses said: “Eat it today, because it is the Sabbath of the Lord. Today it will not be found in the field. Gather for six days. But on the seventh day, it is the Sabbath of the Lord, for which reason it will not be found.”
And the seventh day arrived. And some of the people,
going out to collect it, did not find it. Then the Lord said to Moses: “How long will you be unwilling to keep my commandments and my law? See how the Lord has given you the Sabbath, and, because of this, on the sixth day he distributes to you a double portion. Let each one remain with
his own, and let no one go forth from his place on the seventh day.” And the people kept the Sabbath on the seventh day. And the house of Israel called its name ‘Manna.’  It was like white coriander seed, and its taste was like wheat flour with honey. Then Moses said: “This is the word that the Lord has instructed: Fill an omer of it, and let it be kept for future generations hereafter, so that they may know the bread, with which I nourished you in the wilderness, when you had been led away from the land of Egypt.” And Moses said to Aaron, “Take one vessel, and put manna into it, as much as an omer is able to hold.
And store it in the sight of the Lord, to keep for your generations, just as the Lord instructed Moses.” And so, Aaron placed it in the tabernacle, in reserve. Now the sons of Israel ate manna for forty years, until they arrived in a habitable land. With this food they were nourished, even until they touched the borders of the land of Canaan. Now an omer is a tenth part of an ephah.
Exodus 16:1-36

Commentary: The manna which the Jews ate in the desert for forty years was a symbol of Christ, the true Bread which descended from heaven.

Readings for the Day:
Zachariah 2:14-17
Judith 13
Luke 1:26-38

Second Monday of Advent 2017

~Today is also the Memorial for St. Damasus. Click the link below for more information.~

Jesse Tree Story: MOSES

Scripture: "I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their kinsmen, and will put my words into his mouth; he shall tell them all that I command him. If any man will not listen to my words which he speaks in my name, I myself will make him answer for it."
Deuteronomy 18:18-19

Commentary: God said to Moses: "I will raise up for them a
prophet like you from among their kinsmen.
And I will put my word in his mouth."

Readings for the Day:
Isaiah 35:1-10
Psalm 85
Luke 5:17-26

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Second Sunday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: JOSEPH

Scripture: One day, when his brothers had gone to pasture their father's flocks at Shechem, Israel said to Joseph, "Your brothers, you know, are tending our flocks at Shechem. Get ready; I will send you to them." "I am ready," Joseph answered. "Go then," he replied; "see if all is well with your brothers and the flocks, and bring back word." So he sent him off from the valley of Hebron. When Joseph reached Shechem, a man met him as he was wandering about in the fields. "What are you looking for?" the man asked him. "I am looking for my brothers," he answered. "Could you please tell me where they are tending the flocks?" The man told him, "They have moved on from here; in fact, I heard them say, 'Let us go on to Dothan.'" So Joseph went after his brothers and caught up with them in Dothan. They noticed him from a distance, and before he came up to them, they plotted to kill him. They said to one another: "Here comes that master dreamer! Come on, let us kill him and throw him into one of the cisterns here; we could say that a wild beast devoured him. We shall then see what comes of his dreams." When Reuben heard this, he tried to save him from their hands, saying: "We must not take his life. Instead of shedding blood," he continued, "just throw him into that cistern there in the desert; but don't kill him outright." His purpose was to rescue him from their hands and restore him to his father. So when Joseph came up to them, they stripped him of the long tunic he had on; then they took him and threw him into the cistern, which was empty and dry. They then sat down to their meal. Looking up, they saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead, their camels laden with gum, balm and resin to be taken down to Egypt. Judah said to his brothers: "What is to be gained by killing our brother and concealing his blood? Rather, let us sell him to these Ishmaelites, instead of doing away with him ourselves. After all, he is our brother, our own flesh." His brothers agreed. They sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. Some Midianite traders passed by, and they pulled Joseph up out of the cistern and took him to Egypt. When Reuben went back to the cistern and saw that Joseph was not in it, he tore his clothes, and returning to his brothers, he exclaimed: "The boy is gone! And I--where can I turn?" They took Joseph's tunic, and after slaughtering a goat, dipped the tunic in its blood. Then they sent someone to bring the long tunic to their father, with the message: "We found this. See whether it is your son's tunic or not." He recognized it and exclaimed: "My son's tunic! A wild beast has devoured him! Joseph has been torn to pieces!" Then Jacob rent his clothes, put sackcloth on his loins, and mourned his son many days.
Genesis 37:12-34

Commentary: Joseph, another son of Jacob, prefigures Christ. He was betrayed by his brothers, imprisoned unjustly and saved Egypt from death by starvation. He never lost faith and was exulted by God. 

Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11
Psalm 85
2 Peter 3:8-14
Mark 1:1-8

Saturday, December 9, 2017

First Saturday of Advent 2017

~Today is also the Memorial for St. Juan Diego. A link had been added about this saint.~

Jesse Tree Story: JUDAH
Jesse Tree Symbol: THE CROWN & SCEPTER

Scripture: "The scepter shall never depart from Judah,
or the mace from between his legs, while tribute is
brought to him, and he receives the people's homage."
Genesis 49:10

Commentary: When Jacob gave the birth right to his
fourth son, Judah, he proclaimed: "The scepter shall
not depart from Judah nor the staff from between his
feet until he comes to whom it belongs."

Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 30:19-21, 23-26
Psalm 147
Matthew 9:35-10:1, 5A, 6-8

Thursday, December 7, 2017

First Friday of Advent 2017

~Today is also the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. Please refer to the link for more information about this important feast day.~

Jesse Tree Story: JACOB
Jesse Tree Symbol: A LADDER

Scripture: "Then he had a dream: a stairway rested on the ground, with its top reaching to the heavens; and God's messengers were going up and down on it. And there was the LORD standing beside him and saying: "I, the LORD, am the God of your forefather Abraham and the God of Isaac; the land on which you are lying I will give to you and your descendants. These shall be as plentiful as the dust of the earth, and through them you shall spread out east and west, north and south. In you and your descendants all the nations of the earth shall find blessing."
Genesis 28:12-14

Commentary: God renewed his promise to Isaac's son, Jacob, through a dream in which he saw angels ascending and descending a ladder which reached from heaven to earth.

Readings of the Day:
Genesis 3:9-15,20
Psalm 98
Ephesians 1:3-6, 11-12
Luke 1:26-38

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

First Thursday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: ISAAC

Scripture: "I will bless you and make your descendants
as countless as the stars of the sky and the sands of the
seashore; your descendants will take possession of the
gates of their enemies, and in your descendants all the
nations of the earth will find blessing, because you
obeyed my command.” Genesis 22:17-18

Commentary: Since God saved Isaac from the
sacrificial altar, he was able to carry on God's
promise to Abraham.

Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 26:1-6
Psalm 118
Matthew 7:21, 24-27

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

First Wednesday of Advent 2017

~Today is also the Feast of St. Nicholas. Please click on the link to the right for more information on this saint.~

Jesse Tress Story: ABRAHAM
Jesse Tree Symbol: A RAM

Scripture: " I will bless you and make your descendants as countless as the stars of the sky and the sands of the seashore; your descendants will take possession of the gates of their enemies, and in your descendants all the nations of the earth will find blessing, because you obeyed my command."
Genesis 22:17-18

Commentary: When Abraham was about to sacrifice his own son, God gave him a ram to offer instead. He then promised Abraham that the entire world would be blessed by one of his descendants--Christ. 

Readings for the Day:
Isaiah 25:6-10
Psalm 23
Matthew 15:29-37

Monday, December 4, 2017

First Tuesday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: NOAH
Jesse Tree Symbol: THE ARK

Scripture: "'Cursed be Canaan! The lowest of slaves shall he
be to his brothers.' He also said, 'Blessed be the Lord, the
God of Shem! Let Canaan be his slave. May God expand
Japeth, and may he dwell among the tents of Shem; and
let Canaan be his slave!'"
 Genesis 9:25-27

Commentary: The Ark represents the promise of salvation given by God through Noah. It also symbolizes the Church by which we travel tempestuous waters of life.

Readings of the Day:
Isaiah 11:1-10
Psalm 72
Luke 10: 21-24

First Monday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: Abel
Jesse Tree Symbol: A Lamb

Scripture: "Yahweh asked Cain, 'Where is your brother Abel?'
'I do not k now,' he replied. 'Am I my brother's guardian?'
'What have you done?' Yahweh asked. 'Listen!
Your brother's blood is crying out to me from the ground.
Now be cursed and banned from the ground that has
opened its mouth to receive your brother's blood at your hands.'"
Genesis 4:9-11
Commentary: God chose certain persons to foreshadow
something related to Christ or to His Kingdom.
Just as the blood of Abel cried out to God,
so Christ's blood calls for forgiveness and grace.
Readings for the Day:
Isaiah 2:1-5
Psalm  122
Matthew 8:5-11

Sunday, December 3, 2017

First Sunday of Advent 2017

Jesse Tree Story: ADAM & EVE
Jesse Tree Symbol: AN EATEN APPLE

Scripture: "I shall put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers;
it will bruise your head and you will strike its heel."
Genesis 3:15

Commentary: The first promise of the coming of the Redeemer, Christ, was made to Adam and Eve in Paradise after they disobeyed God.

Readings for the Day:
Isaiah 63: 16-17, 19B, 64: 2-7
Psalm 80
1 Corinthians 1:3-9
Mark 13:33-37

Season of ADVENT 2017


Every Advent, Christmas, Lent & Easter, we come together to walk the journey of the seasons as a school community. We invite you and your family to join us on our journey as we discover a deeper meaning of the Liturgical Seasons.

During Advent, we will be building a JESSE TREE. Every day, this site will post a Jesse Tree Symbol that goes with a story from Scripture. There will also be a short commentary about the symbol and scripture. The Liturgical Readings for the Day will also be notated, along with any special Feast Days or traditions. Feel free to use the links at the right of the page to navigate to sites, where you can access the Readings for the Day and other information.

We hope that you and your family have a FAITH-FILLED Advent Season

The Jesse Tree

"O Root of Jesse, standing as a sign for all people, standing before the silence of kings, to whom the gentiles offer their prayers.  Come and deliver us."

The Jesse Tree helps us to remember that Advent is a time of waiting for the coming of the Savior.  It is a symbol of life and growth and is expressed through the ancestry of an individual.  The image is not unusual to us since we also speak about our family tree or our roots.

Jesse, whom the tree is named after, was the father of King David.  The tree reminds us of all the people who waited for the coming of the Savior.  We decorate the tree with symbols that remind us of some of the people who waited for the coming of the Savior--the patriarchs and matriarchs (our fathers and mothers in faith), the prophets, and the parents of the Lord.

If you would like to have your own Jesse Tree for your family in your home, please refer to links posted on the sidebar for assistance.