Greetings everyone! The months of October and November in Washington, D.C. are very pretty. The weather usually stays mild with a few brisk days here and there, so the season of fall is often pleasant. The trees also gradually lose their leaves, which is a nice sight. This fall has not been an exception.
Near the end of October, we had two big events. First, we had the feast of St. John Paul II. It fell on a Sunday, which would ordinarily mean that we would not celebrate it, but since he is the patron of this seminary, we were able to celebrate it instead of the Sunday in Ordinary Time. The evening before, we prayed the Divine Office and had Eucharistic Adoration. On Sunday, we had a Mass and a nice brunch afterward. Later that evening, we celebrated with the St. John Paul II Shrine right down the road from us. Secondly, we had a weekend of recollection. We were in silence for the weekend with a 40-hour Eucharistic devotion. We had a Dominican priest give us talks about the unique friendship that a priest has with Jesus Christ. Later in October, we had a Halloween party at the seminary. In November, the graduating men and the faculty at the seminary went on a pilgrimage to Virginia. We toured the new Christendom College chapel and prayed Evening Prayer with some cloistered sisters.
The priest during the weekend of recollection, Fr. James Brent, gave some great talks about living in friendship with Christ. He said that one of the surest ways to live in this friendship with Him was to start celebrating the liturgy in the depth of our hearts. This involves recalling the different parts of the liturgy throughout one’s day and, in a way, worshiping God interiorly. I will briefly give a short exposition of one part of the Mass. Take the Creed for example. The Creed (I believe in one God…) is our profession of faith. To live this in the liturgy of the heart, we can make acts of faith throughout our day. This could simply mean stating to God what I personally believe about the faith. One could simply say, “Jesus, I believe in your presence in the Eucharist. I believe in…” These simple acts of faith are ways in which we can be in union with God at all times throughout our day. The same exercise can be done with the other parts of the liturgy such as the Penitential Right, the Gloria, or the Eucharistic Sacrifice. Hopefully, this can be of help to you as it has been for me.
Know of my continued prayers for all of you, especially this Advent season. God Bless!