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November 2017

December 2017

Sketch of Christ Crucified by St. John of the Cross

John of the cross sketchThis is a famous sketch of Christ crucified drawn by St. John of the Cross. It was later used by Salvatore Dali as his inspiration for one of his own paintings of Christ on the cross.

John of the Cross had so many wonderful insights about the spiritual life. The perceived absence of God, the "dark night of the soul" which can suddenly envelope believers, is actually a time when God draws nearest to us. It is precisely in times of feeling abandoned by God that we can experience the presence of God more intimately than ever before. We need to see and listen in the dark. 

In his imagery of the spiritual journey as an ascent to Mount Carmel, we gain the insight that the journey to God can best be made with guidance from expert climbers - experienced spiritual guides who help us along the way. The modern use of spiritual directors has much to do with John's writings and reflections.

 

 


Gifts Galore from "Stars for Jesus" Donations

It looks like Santa's Sleigh might have landed on Holy Cross' lawn for a few moments, but no, the generous gifts donated by parishioners and friends of Holy Cross to anonymous recipients were collected awaiting pick-up by the several agencies which participated in our Stars For Jesus annual Christmas gift drive.

Over six hundred gifts were donated, including sixteen brand new bicycles, clothing, toys, gift cards and others. 

Thank you to the organizers of the event for their energy and enthusiasm and to all those who took the time select a star, shop and wrap the gift.

May God bless your generosity and multiply the spirit of good will at Christmas.

Gifts


Isaiah In Advent

Michelangelo _profeti _Isaiah_01
Michelangelo's Isaiah on the Sistine Ceiling

The readings from the Prophet Isaiah loose our minds from the historical context in which they were written, to pray about the two comings of Christ: in the Incarnation and at the End of Time.

The first we acknowledge with gratitude for the nourishment Jesus' Body and Blood gives us while we wait the the Second Coming in faith and hope.


The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

 

Piazza Immacolatacolonnaroma
There are many columns around the world dedicated to Mary, this one in Rome is under the title of the Immaculate Conception. It was erected shortly after the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception was promulgated.

Mary is shown with representations of the four evangelists along with her typical artistic calligraphy as the Immaculate Conception.

Since the column itself was originally raised by the local firemen, the custom of the fire department placing a bouquet at Mary's feet and a floral wreath around her outstretched arm on this date has developed. 

Mary's Immaculate Conception, her fiat or let it be done to me at the Annunciation and Jesus' Incarnation in her womb are each important parts of God's wonderful plan for our redemption.


Saint Ambrose

Ambrose
Saint Ambrose, bishop and one of original doctors of the Church helps keep the Chair of Peter aloft in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. He is shown on the left front in mitre, with one of his pupils, St. Augustine in miter on the right front of the chair.

Ambrose wrote, spoke eloquently and defended the Church against heterodox doctrine while guiding the direction the Church would take until this very day.

Augustine was initially attracted by Ambrose's preaching style, but stayed for his substance and through Ambrose's influence re-animated his Christian faith.

 


Read the Signs of the Seasons

Fig Apparently fig trees can be immense! Jesus uses them to focus our attention on paying the proper attention to the signs his ministry manifests to the world: the deaf hear, the blind see, the dead are raised, the poor are fed and the people have the Good News preached to them.

The end of the church's calendar year helps us anticipate the coming of the Advent season: let us prepare.