Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Angelus

I rarely watch daytime television.  Today, however, as I flipped through the channels looking for something worth watching, I happened upon EWTN as one program was ending.  The beautiful music that accompanied the images caught my ears and eyes, so I stopped to absorb the loveliness.  Just then, Mother Angelica and the nuns began a prayer.  It was The Angelus.  It was short, sweet, and touching. 

I did a quick search and found this website that tells about this prayer.

At the top of the page is this painting, is a 19th century work by the French painter Jean-Francois Millet, depicting a farming couple praying this prayer at dusk.  I love it for it's simplicity and pureness.  See the steeple in the background? 

Evening Prayer, by Jean-Francois Millet, courtesy of Wikipedia

The Angelus is traditionally prayed at 6 AM, noon, and 6 PM.  Isn't it a wonderful prayer to remind us that Mary said "Yes"?  I love that the prayer is announced by the ringing of a bell in several countries as a reminder to pause in our busyness and pray.

This is taken from scripture found in the Bible, known also as The Magnificat, Luke 1:26-38, as well as other passages as mentioned in the website.

The Angelus
V. The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.
R. And she conceived of the Holy Spirit.
Hail Mary, full of grace,
The Lord is with Thee;
Blessed art thou among women,
And blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us sinners,
Now and at the hour of our death. Amen

V. Behold the handmaid of the Lord.
R. Be it done unto me according to thy word.
 Hail Mary, etc.
V. And the Word was made Flesh.
R. And dwelt among us.
Hail Mary, etc.
V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts, that we to whom the Incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection. Through the same Christ Our Lord. Amen.

The website concludes with this message: "When we pray the Angelus with humility and love, we are emulating Mary’s faith in His goodness. We are blessed in that we can ask both God and His Blessed Mother for their assistance on our journey towards Eternal Life!"

May our journey during Advent bring us daily reminders to emulate Mary's faith and of the real reason for the Christmas season.

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