Universalis
Monday 14 December 2020    (other days)
Saint John of the Cross, Priest, Doctor 
 on Monday of the 3rd week of Advent

The Lord is the source of all wisdom: come, let us adore him.

Year: B(I). Psalm week: 3. Liturgical Colour: White.

St John of the Cross (1542 - 1591)

He was born in Fontiveros, in Spain, in about 1542. He spent some time as a Carmelite friar before, in 1568, Saint Teresa of Ávila persuaded him to pioneer the reform of the Carmelite order. This was a difficult task and a dangerous one: he suffered imprisonment and severe punishment at the hands of the Church authorities. He died at the monastery of Ubeda in Andalusia on 14 December 1591: the monks there had initially treated him as the worst of sinners, but by the time he died they had recognised his sanctity and his funeral was the occasion of a great outburst of enthusiasm.
  His works include two major mystical poems – he is considered one of the great poets of the Spanish language – and detailed commentaries on them and the spiritual truths they convey. He was canonized in 1726 and declared a Doctor of the Church in 1926. See the articles in the Catholic Encyclopaedia and Wikipedia.

Liturgical colour: white

White is the colour of heaven. Liturgically, it is used to celebrate feasts of the Lord; Christmas and Easter, the great seasons of the Lord; and the saints. Not that you will always see white in church, because if something more splendid, such as gold, is available, that can and should be used instead. We are, after all, celebrating.
  In the earliest centuries all vestments were white – the white of baptismal purity and of the robes worn by the armies of the redeemed in the Apocalypse, washed white in the blood of the Lamb. As the Church grew secure enough to be able to plan her liturgy, she began to use colour so that our sense of sight could deepen our experience of the mysteries of salvation, just as incense recruits our sense of smell and music that of hearing. Over the centuries various schemes of colour for feasts and seasons were worked out, and it is only as late as the 19th century that they were harmonized into their present form.

Mid-morning reading (Terce)(Isaiah 10:20-21) ©
That day, the remnant of Israel and the survivors of the House of Jacob will truly rely on the Lord, the Holy One of Israel. A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God.

Noon reading (Sext)(Isaiah 10:24,27) ©
The Lord of Hosts says this: My people who live in Zion, do not be afraid. On that day the burden will fall from your shoulder and the yoke will cease to weigh on your neck.

Afternoon reading (None)(Isaiah 13:22-14:1) ©
Its time is almost up, its days will not last long. Yes, the Lord will have pity on Jacob, and Israel will be saved.
Scripture readings taken from The Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd, Ltd and Doubleday, a division of Random House, Inc, and used by permission of the publishers. For on-line information about other Random House, Inc. books and authors, see the Internet web site at http://www.randomhouse.com.
 
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