Sunday, December 07, 2014

Collects for the Second Sunday of Advent

Prayer book
BLESSED Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning; Grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word, we may embrace, and ever hold fast, the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

Breviary (Sarum)
STIR UP our hearts, O Lord, to make ready the ways of Thine only begotten; that by His coming we may be worthy to serve Thee with purified minds. Through the same. Amen

The Breviary bids us to fulfil the purpose of Advent – the preparation for the coming King. We are to make this preparation by being completely single minded in that purpose. This is why purity is so important. Christians possess within themselves the Kingdom of God. It is the duty of every Christian to grow that kingdom, not by seeking to convert, but by conforming the self to the will of God.

Archbishop Cranmer, in composing his collect, points out that knowledge of God can only come through what amounts to the Revelation with which God Himself has chosen to reveal Himself to His children. We start with Holy Scripture which is to be chewed over, taken into our minds even as Christ Himself is taken into our bodies at Holy Mass. Our Christianity cannot be just theoretical, nor passive, nor purely active. All three must take a balance. We must be patient with Scripture and accept the limitations that Catholic Doctrine places upon our lives. We must take comfort with the Holy Scripture and know that the sacraments that it describes provide the vehicles by which we may find the grace of God and true sustenance in Him.

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