Our mission at St. Andrew Catholic Church is to become saints.
Following the example of our patron, St. Andrew, with humility we seek to:
Hear God’s call through the truth of the Catholic Church
Respond in love with acts of charity and mercy
Grow continuously through the sacraments and daily prayer and
Proclaim the Good News through our vocation.
Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you.
We have come to the last days of our preparations and we are counting down the days until the Lord comes. Beginning on December 17 the Church changes her focus in the liturgy we are no longer counting up from the first Sunday of Advent, we are now counting down until the day of the Savior’s birth. Beginning on the 17th at Evening Prayer, each day we have for the Marian Antiphon what we refer to as the “O Antiphons.” These antiphons are represented in the artwork currently on display above the choir. Each one proclaims a title of the Messiah as proclaimed by the prophets in the Old Testament and culminates in the one that is absent from the series in the church, “O Emmanuel.” I will list them here for your preparations in these last days of Advent.
O Wisdom of our God Most High, guiding creation with power and love:
come to teach us the path of knowledge!
O Leader of the House of Israel, giver of the Law to Moses on Sinai:
come to rescue us with your mighty power!
O Root of Jesse’s stem, sign of God’s love for all his people: come to save us without delay!
O Key of David, opening the gates of God’s eternal Kingdom: come and free the prisoners of darkness!
O Radiant Dawn, splendor of eternal light, sun of justice:
come and shine on those who dwell in darkness and in the shadow of death!
O King of all nations and keystone of the Church: come and save man, whom you formed from the dust!
O Emmanuel, our King and Giver of Law: come to save us, Lord our God!
Each antiphon is insistent repeating the command, COME! Each is marked with exclamation as we cry to God to send us a savior. In these days as we think about the long awaited coming of our God, I encourage you to ponder these titles for Christ and let them stir up that longing to receive Him in your heart.
Reading Archbishop Sartain’s reflections for our Advent journey two questions have stuck with me in these days: “What do I need for Christmas?” and “What am I going to give Jesus for Christmas?” Each question is often overlooked as we selfishly think about what I want and what I am going to give to others. As it was highlighted for the children in the VBS, how would you feel if everyone was celebrating your birthday and no one actually paid attention to you?
Fr. Jack D. Shrum
For more of Father Jack's reflections click here