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Does attending Mass on Christmas Day this year fulfill one’s Sunday obligation?

Does attending Mass on Christmas Day this year fulfill one’s Sunday obligation?

| Father John Paul Erickson | December 16, 2010 | 7 Comments

The short answer is no — attending Mass on Christmas Day this year, which happens to be a Saturday, does not fulfill one’s obligation to attend Mass on Sunday, any more than attending a wedding on a Saturday afternoon fulfills one’s Sunday obligation. But the reason behind this answer requires some explanation.

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Zechariah and Elizabeth slip into Advent fashionably late

Zechariah and Elizabeth slip into Advent fashionably late

| Father Michael Van Sloun For The Catholic Spirit | December 16, 2010 | 0 Comments

Biblical characters that help us prepare for Christmas. Zechariah and Elizabeth are two key figures in the first chapter of Luke’s infancy narrative (Luke 1:5-2:52), and they play prominent roles in the Gospel readings for the weekday Masses immediately before Christmas. The Dec. 19 Gospel is the announcement by Gabriel to Zechariah of the birth of John the Baptist (Luke 1:5-25), Dec. 21 is Mary’s Visitation to Eliza­beth (Luke 1:39-45), Dec. 23 is the birth of the Baptist (Luke 1:57-66), and Dec. 24 is Zechariah’s canticle (Luke 1:67-79). The Visitation is also the Gospel for the Fourth Sunday of Advent in Year C.

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Fourth Sunday of Advent begins end of waiting

Fourth Sunday of Advent begins end of waiting

| December 16, 2010 | 0 Comments

The following Advent wreath prayers for the fourth week of Advent are in­tended to help busy households make Advent a prayerful time during the rush of Christmas preparations. The language is fairly simple, to be used by groups of adults or adults with children, and options are noted to allow for participation by other members of the household.

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Star and city of Bethlehem hold theological significance

Star and city of Bethlehem hold theological significance

| December 15, 2010 | 1 Comment

Although the Star of Bethlehem can be examined from a scientific perspective, it also has theological significance, as does the city itself. The Catholic Spirit recently interviewed Father Scott Carl, assistant professor of Sacred Scripture at St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity, about Bethlehem and the star.

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Wondering about the ‘Star of Wonder’

Wondering about the ‘Star of Wonder’

| December 15, 2010 | 0 Comments

If it weren’t for the Gospel of Matthew’s brief reference to a star guiding Magi from the East to the newborn Messiah, “we wouldn’t know anything about the Star of Bethlehem,” according to a Minnesota astron­omer.

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It’s not a sin to miss Mass due to the weather

It’s not a sin to miss Mass due to the weather

| December 15, 2010 | 1 Comment

A Minneapolis pastor offered his parishioners some rules of thumb for future weekends when weather or other circumstances make attendance at Mass difficult, if not impossible.

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Pray with family and friends on Gaudete Sunday

Pray with family and friends on Gaudete Sunday

| December 9, 2010 | 0 Comments

Advent: Week 3 — Dec. 12

Leader: With the beginning of this third week of Advent, we’re more than half way home to Christmas. We gather again to pray so that our hearts are truly prepared for the birth of the Child Jesus.

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Gather around the Advent wreath to pray with family and friends

Gather around the Advent wreath to pray with family and friends

| December 2, 2010 | 0 Comments

Leader: Today begins just the second week of Advent, our season of waiting and preparing for Christmas. In order to help each of us prepare our own hearts for the birth of Christ, we take these few moments again this week to pray together.

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‘IT’S THE FRAME OF OUR DAY’

‘IT’S THE FRAME OF OUR DAY’

| December 1, 2010 | 4 Comments

It was 6:25 a.m. The vast majority of University of St. Thomas residence hall windows were dark and the campus was quiet, except for the hushed voices of a few students walking briskly to the chapel.

Every weekday morning, students meet to pray morning prayer at 6:30 at the Florence Chapel in the basement of the Chapel of St. Thomas Aquinas.

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Let’s do Advent better this year with family and friends

Let’s do Advent better this year with family and friends

| November 19, 2010 | 0 Comments

This Advent, let’s not just put an Advent wreath out as a decoration. Let’s really do Advent.

Let’s gather family or friends each week of the Advent season and pray that beautiful ritual together.

We can do this.

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Take time to count your blessings and thank God for your gifts

Take time to count your blessings and thank God for your gifts

| Father Michael Van Sloun For The Catholic Spirit | November 19, 2010 | 0 Comments

The holiday season moves into full swing this month with our an­nual celebration of Thanksgiving. It is marvelous to be able to have an attitude of gratitude.

God is our provider, the giver of all good gifts, so when it comes to giving thanks, our first expression of gratitude should be directed to almighty God.

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Isaiah: Old Testament prophet for the Advent season

Isaiah: Old Testament prophet for the Advent season

| Father Michael Van Sloun For The Catholic Spirit | November 18, 2010 | 0 Comments

Isaiah’s Advent message. Isaiah is the prophet who guides our journey through Advent as we prepare for Christmas. Advent is a season of joyful anticipation, and Isaiah invites us to look forward to the coming of the Messiah, to prepare the way of the Lord. Advent is a liturgical season with a strong penitential tone, and Isaiah urges us to straighten out our crooked ways, tear down our mountains of misdeeds

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