Sunday, January 20, 2008

Lucia Support the Pope at midnight tonight

If you are up at midnight tonight, please consider praying the Angelus.

Midnight NZ time is midday in Rome when the Pope will be praying the Angelus in St Peter's Square.

Here's the story:
In Italy and in the world, millions tomorrow will pray the Angelus with the pope

Enthusiastic participation everywhere at the invitation from Cardinal Ruini to join the pope in the Angelus prayer tomorrow, as "a gesture of affection, serenity, and joy" after the controversy and cancellation surrounding the pope’s visit to the La Sapienza university. 150,000 are expected in Saint Peter’s square. Giant television screens will be set up to broadcast the event in Milan and many other cities. The participation of the Catholics in China.

Rome (AsiaNews) – The Angelus of Benedict XVI will be followed tomorrow by millions of people in Italy and all over the world. The idea comes from Cardinal Camillo Ruini, vicar of Rome, who has invited Catholics and all the Romans to come to Saint Peter’s Square tomorrow to participate in the traditional Marian prayer recited by the pontiff. The purpose is to "express closeness and affection to the pope", and to "share a moment of collective serenity and prayer" after the regretful cancellation of his visit to the university of Rome.

Benedict XVI was supposed to have gone to La Sapienza university to present the inaugural address for the academic year, in a visit scheduled for January 17. But fierce opposition from a small group of teachers and students – together with the inaction of the political and academic authorities – forced the pope to cancel the visit. Without intending to stoke the controversy, the pope in any case sent the text of his address (which AsiaNews published in its entirety; see ‘Pope tells university to seek truth and goodness instead of presumption and division’).

On January 16, when the pope’s decision was made public, a press release from vicar of Rome Cardinal Camillo Ruini, recalling "the sad events that have forced the Holy Father to cancel his visit to the Universit√† La Sapienza", said that "the Church of Rome expresses its full and filial nearness to its bishop, the pope, and expresses the love, admiration, and gratitude for Benedict XVI that live in the heart of the people of Rome. To allow everyone to demonstrate these sentiments, I invite the faithful, but also all of the Romans, to be present in Saint Peter’s Square for the recitation of the Angelus next January 20. It will be a gesture of affection and serenity, an expression of the joy that we feel in having Benedict XVI as our bishop and as our pope".

To those who thought that the gesture might seem to be nothing other than a proof of political power, in "L’Osservatore Romano" (on January 18) Cardinal Ruini reiterated that the Angelus "is a prayer. Therefore it is absolutely not directed against anyone, it will be a gesture of affection and serenity". If, therefore, "anyone wants to interpret this event in any other way, he will interpret in an absolutely mistaken manner".

The invitation has met with an enthusiastic response all over Italy. In Rome, 150,000 persons are expected in Saint Peter’s Square. Many more will participate in the prayer from their own cities. Big screens will display the event in many churches, to help those present pray together with the pope. In Milan, the Sunday prayer will be broadcast live on a big screen in the central square of the city’s cathedral, at the initiative of the city council.

Even in faraway China, there is widespread response to the invitation. In Hebei, the Catholics will meet in the chapel at 7 p.m. local time (noon in Rome) to pray together with the pope.

Related Link: AsiaNews

And now for the prayer, The Angelus:

The Angel of the Lord declared to Mary:
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.

Behold the handmaid of the Lord: Be it done unto me according to Thy word.

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.

And the Word was made Flesh: And dwelt among us.

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.

Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray:

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.


UPDATE: KG of Crusader Rabbit has asked for an explanation of the above prayer.

Catholics believe that Jesus is both truly God and truly Man. This is called the Incarnation - from the Latin "to make flesh". Jesus is sometimes called "The Word" or "the Word of God". The Incarnation is sometimes called "The Word made Flesh".

The Angelus is a prayer in honour of the Incarnation and the Virgin Mary through whom the Incarnation was made possible.

The Angel of the Lord declared to Mary:
And she conceived of the Holy Spirit.

The first part of the prayer summarises the Annunciation, where the Angel Gabriel comes to Mary, tells her of God's plan for her, with the result being that she conceives. This is followed by the Hail Mary prayer:

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.


The first two lines above are from the Holy Bible, Luke 1:28 (And the angel being come in, said unto her: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.)

The second and third lines also incorporates Mary's cousin Elizabeth's greeting to her when Mary came to visit Elizabeth once Mary was pregnant (with Jesus) and Elizabeth was pregnant with John the Baptist (another miraculous conception in that both parents were very old and childless). From the Holy Bible, Luke 1:42 (And she cried out with a loud voice and said: Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.) The name Jesus, is an addition to the Biblical phrases.

The second part of the prayer is called the Sinners Prayer, asking Mary to pray for us now and at the hour of our death.

There are three Hail Marys through the prayer. The number 3 is significant as it's also the number of the Trinity (God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit). In Hebrew it's a superlative where if something is said three times.

Behold the handmaid of the Lord: Be it done unto me according to Thy word.

That's Mary's response to the angel, and it comes from Luke 1:38 (And Mary said: Behold the handmaid of the Lord: be it done to me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.)

And the Word was made Flesh: And dwelt among us.

This refers to the Incarnation: Jesus (the Word) became flesh and lived as a human being among us.

The rest of the prayer is hopefully self-explanatory.

4 comment(s):

Hoolian said...

Good work with this, Lucyna. Your effort is to be commended; your in fine form.

KG said...

Lucyna, for those of us who don't know much about Catholicism, could you explain what that means? Thanks.

Lucyna Maria said...

KG, I've updated the post with an explanation of the prayer. Is that what you wanted to know?

KG said...

Yes, thank you. :-)

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