Furnished with the Moon and Stars

By Sister Catherine Cleary, OSB

Christmas Readings: Is( 62:11-12)   (Titus 3:4-7), Gospel (Lk 2:15-20)

Jesus Christ the infant was laid in a crib in a stable, warmed by straw and the breath of the animals, sung to by the angels, adored by his parents, shepherds and Kings. It all seems so unreal, so unlike today’s blue and pink nurseries furnished with teddy bears, cribs, books and mobiles.

So we ask was Jesus really human? Did he cry, want milk, to be changed, to be held?  Or did Matthew and Luke write a fiction? Continue Reading

Called to be Bearers of Christ to One Another

By Prioress Sister Sandra Brunenn, OSB

“Mary set out, traveled to the hill country … entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth.”  So begins Sunday’s Gospel, the beautifully intimate encounter of these two women both holding within themselves fulfillment of longing and promise of blessing.

The fulfillment? For Elizabeth, an old barren woman, is finally with child. For Mary carries within her womb the fulfillment of ages of longing of the Jewish people.

And the Promise! Elizabeth, will bear John who will be great in the sight of the Lord. Mary will bear Jesus, who will be called the Prince of Peace! Continue Reading

Peace on Earth … or not?

By Sister Catherine Cleary, OSB

Reading through the first reading (Hebrews 10: 5-10) and Gospel (Lk 1:39-45) for the 4th Sunday of Advent brings to mind the contrast of the peaceful past of this area with today’s violence and upheaval.

Micah’s prophesying, “His greatness shall reach to the ends of the earth; he shall be peace,” stands in contradiction to what our evening news announces to us day after day. The bombing – shells flying, children screaming, people running for shelter – is anything but peaceful.  Continue Reading

The Call to Rejoice … as We Grieve

By Prioress Sister Sandra Brunenn, OSB

We live in a world of contrasts!…This is so apparent today.

On one hand, our country grieves over the horrific loss of life in the mass shooting in Connecticut on Friday;

On the other, the 3rd Sunday’s Scriptures call us to “shout for joy….sing joyfully…be glad and exult with all your heart”!

What shall we do? Continue Reading

The Call to Rejoice

By Sister Catherine Cleary, OSB

While we were still using Latin, the third Sunday of Advent was called, Gaudete (Rejoice) Sunday. The name derived from Paul’s letter to the Philippians, “Rejoice in the Lord, always, I shall say it again: rejoice!”  And we are told why we should rejoice: “The Lord is near.”

The Gospel presents  John the Baptist  preaching the good news which does not sound like good news at first: “If you were a sinner, “Stop,” says John. “Stop collecting more than what is prescribed, stop extortion, stop accusing falsely. In other words, stop your sinning. And besides, giving up  sinning.” John continues his preaching, telling his listeners to do good: “Whoever has two cloaks, share with the person who has none. If people are hungry, feed them.” Continue Reading

Becoming Christ for Others

By Sister Catherine Cleary, OSB

The Scriptures for Advent always call us back to reflect on our preparing for a deeper awareness of Christ  in our hearts, of a greater transformation; a becoming  Christ for others.

In the second reading for the 2nd Sunday of Advent, Paul says to the Philippians, “And this is my prayer: that your love may increase ever more and more in knowledge and every kind of perception.”  (Phil1:9) Continue Reading

Let Us Wake Up!

By Prioress Sister Sandra Brunenn, OSB

If you are aware of world news today you may have heard that the people of Mexico are celebrating today.  They are inaugurating a new president for their country and there is much hope that Pena Nieto will be able to help move the country away from the crime and violence which the drug cartels are causing in that country.  Although I have known of the violence there, it has not been a focus in my thought and prayer…. Continue Reading