Hope and Comfort in these Times: An Advent Retreat

Car McGinley Leave a Comment

This Advent season will be like no other with quarantine restrictions; altered holiday celebrations; inability to be with loved ones; and continued economic and political turmoil. How does the Rule of Benedict help us to find hope, peace and even joy during these times? Join us for a virtual retreat, including a livestreamed concert of Advent hymns and carols and a Taizé service; workshops on Waiting, Hope and Praying with Mandalas plus opportunities for integration or lectio divina via Zoom; and a Zoom social hour. This retreat is open to oblates and the public. Retreat leaders Concert: Sherri Hansen & …

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‘Advent & The O Antiphons,’ The Holy Wisdom Podcast

Brooke Moriarty Living in Community, Podcast, Prayer & Worship 3 Comments

Want to be the first to hear every new episode? Click here to sign up for email notifications! December summons feelings of tradition and familiarity for many of us. In some faiths, this includes the preparation for Christmas known as Advent, and the singing of the O Antiphons. In this episode, we have Sister Lynne Smith and Holy Wisdom Monastery’s own Director of Worship and Music, Lynn Lemberger. Join us to learn about these traditions and how we might be able to honor their meanings in our own lives. Where to Listen? You can listen to The Holy Wisdom Podcast at any …

Sojourner diary—hopeful expectations

Rachel Olson Living in Community, Sojourner diary 2 Comments

Advent is a season of hopeful expectation. Nowhere is that more clearly illustrated for us than in the Gospel stories of mother-to-be Mary as she surrenders herself to God and then patiently waits for the Divine plan and purpose for her life to develop and emerge within her. I’m guessing from my own childbearing experiences that it wasn’t always easy or comfortable. For Mary, saying yes to the Spirit was risk. It was a guarantee that her life would change and that some of that change would bring pain. But, say yes to God also meant that she would be …

Learning to hope

Lynne Smith, OSB Living in Community Leave a Comment

In the sisters’ chapter meeting last week we began reading an article entitled “Advent Currents,” by Sr. Bede Luetkemeyer, OSB, from a 2004 issue of the magazine Spirit and Life. In the article Sr. Bede reflects on the advent themes of hope, patience and desire. In the section on hope, she quotes Lutheran theologian Jürgen Moltmann. “True hope—which means the hope that endures and sustains us—is based on God’s call and command. We are called to hope. It is a command: a command to resist death. It is a call: the call to divine life. Enduring hope is not something …

Mexican celebrations during Advent

Paz Vital, OSB Living in Community Leave a Comment

Growing up in Mexico, every year around this time everyone looks forward to major festivities. The Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe is celebrated on December 12. It’s a huge celebration throughout the whole country which commemorates the appearances of the Virgin Mary to an Aztec man in the 16th century. The story is that Mary appeared to Juan Diego and sent him on a mission to have a shrine built in her honor. He hardly felt capable of achieving this task since he was an indigenous man and spoke Nahuatl, not the Spanish of the Bishop. At first the …

Celebrating Advent, Christmas and Epiphany at Holy Wisdom Monastery

Holy Wisdom Monastery Prayer & Worship, Spirituality Articles Leave a Comment

(Selections from the Liturgy of the Hours used by Benedictine Women of Madison, Holy Wisdom Monastery, Middleton, WI) Anticipating Christmas with the O Antiphons During the last week before Christmas, we begin the daily singing of the   O Antiphons, an ancient practice that embraces the sense of longing and anticipation for Christmas which swells with each day.  These antiphons are sung prior to the Magnificat, the Song of Mary from Luke 1:46-55, in our evening prayers throughout this week.  Each antiphon begins by addressing God with a name that expresses God’s loving design for people of all times and places.  Each …

Script lettering: O Antiphons

O Antiphons

Ann Moyer Homepage, Monastic Life, Prayer & Worship 2 Comments

In the monastic Liturgy of the Hours (morning, midday and evening prayers of the community), antiphons are sung as an introduction and a response to readings of the psalms, the heart of our liturgy, and before and after the Benedictus at the end of morning prayer and the Magnificat at the end of evening prayer. During the last days of Advent we change to special antiphons, the O Antiphons, to accompany the Magnificat, Mary’s song of joy and humility. Sung each evening at the end of evening prayer, they provide an additional layer of hope and expectation. The origin of the O Antiphons …

Sisters and sojourners gathered around the Advent wreath for evening prayer

Presence

Lynne Smith, OSB Building Community, Living in Community 2 Comments

I’ve been reflecting on “presence” since Advent began. Paul Knitter’s homily of December 6, 2015 brought my musings into focus. Here is a line that caught my attention. “That Jesus will ‘come again’ in the future is not out there, on a horizontal line: rather, the future is vertically the depth of the present, that which is already here but has to be discovered, trusted, and realized.” Benedictine spirituality calls me to see Christ in every person I encounter. I’m better at being present to that reality on some days than on others. Recent weeks have been full of opportunities …