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Advent of the Savior

A Commentary on the Infancy Narratives of Jesus

Stephen J. Binz

Advent is the season in which we reread and relive the experience of ancient Israel as it longed for the coming of the Messiah. It is also a time to reflect on the infancy narratives of Jesus which have enriched the lives of believers through the centuries. As an extension of Israel's longing for the Messiah, the infancy accounts serve as overtures to the writings of the evangelists, and stand as bridges connecting the Old and New Testaments. Advent of the Savior focuses on this connection of past to present so that we may deepen our longing for the Messiah's coming again and ask God in our own day to be Emmanuel, "God with us." The infancy narratives of Matthew and Luke express the basic truths about the divine and human mystery of Jesus Christ. Advent of the Savior reminds us that it is through these truths that we are called to move from longing for our Savior to hope in his coming again. Stephen J. Binz is a biblical scholar, award-winning author, and popular speaker. He studied Scripture at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome and Jerusalem, and has developed dozens of books and programs in biblical theology and spirituality, including The God of Freedom and Life: A Commentary on the Book of Exodus, Panorama of the Bible: Old Testament, and Panorama of the Bible: New Testament (Liturgical Press). He offers keynotes and workshops at church conferences and leads pilgrimages to the lands of the Bible. Information about his work may be found at Bridge-B.com. The infancy narratives of Matthew and Luke express the basic truths about the divine and human mystery of Jesus Christ. Advent of the Savior reminds us that it is through these truths that we are called to move from longing for our Savior to hope in his coming again.

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Waiting in Joyful Hope

Daily Reflections for Advent and Christmas 2017-18

Mary DeTurris Poust

Prepare spiritually for the coming of Christ with this popular, easy-to-use annual guide. During the especially busy Advent and Christmas seasons, this book offers brief, down-to-earth reflections that bring prayer and Scripture into everyday life in a thought-provoking and lasting way. Through Mary DeTurris Poust's insightful reflections on Scripture readings from the daily Mass, readers will grow in their understanding of the word of God. This book will help busy people achieve their goal of enriching their personal prayer life during the seasons of Advent and Christmas.Mary DeTurris Poust is director of communications for the Diocese of Albany, New York, a retreat leader, and the author of numerous books, including Not by Bread Alone: Daily Reflections for Lent 2016. She writes about the spiritual journey on her blog, Not Strictly Spiritual, and in her monthly column, Life Lines. Visit her website at www.NotStrictlySpiritual.com.

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A Season of Little Sacraments

Christmas Commotion, Advent Grace

Susan H. Swetnam

The lament swells every December, as perennial as the jingle of Salvation Army bells: the season of Advent is lost in the secular trappings of Christmas preparation. For those aspiring to a reverent Advent but caught up in twenty-first-century to-do lists, A Season of Little Sacraments offers a fresh perspective on the secular-sacred December divide. Susan Swetnam invites readers along on an ordinary woman's day-by-day walk through Advent, demonstrating that the very "distractions" accused of taking Christ out of Christmas can become "little sacraments"—occasions for grace to break through and faith to deepen—if approached with mindful reflection. For readers who want to experience a truly sacred Advent without fleeing completely from contemporary society, A Season of Little Sacraments will be a welcome source of nourishment and delight. Susan H. Swetnam taught advanced writing courses for thirty-five years at Idaho State University and is the author of more than a hundred articles and seven books.

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Seeing Haloes

Christmas Poems to Open the Heart

John Shea, drawings by Mark and Franklin McMahon

Christmas is unavoidable. But if it is going to happen for us, we need to take time. We need to slow down and do something out of the ordinary, something that has to do with the spiritual meaning of the feast and the season. Reading the Christmas poems of Seeing Haloes is one way of doing this. John Shea hopes that each poem strikes a chord and brings us into memories we may have forgotten and present experiences we may have overlooked. When this happens, the Spirit arrives to illumine our minds, inspire our wills, and gladden our hearts. Christmas happens.John (Jack) Shea is a consultant with decades of experience in providing theological and formation services to parishes and faith-based organizations. He has published over twenty books of theology and spirituality, three novels, and three books of poetry. He lectures nationally and internationally on storytelling in world religions, faith-based health care, contemporary spirituality, and the spirit work movement. Visit jackshea.org to learn more.Mark McMahon has been documenting people and their environments nationally and internationally for more than forty years. His on-location works are included in museums, exhibitions, private and corporate collections. He is a second-generation Chicago artist.

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The Liturgical Year

Advent, Christmas, Epiphany (vol. 1)

Adrien Nocent, OSBIntroduced, Emended, and Annotated by Paul Turner

When Adrien Nocent's The Liturgical Year was published in the 1970s, it was the very first comprehensive commentary on the three-year lectionary in relation to the Sacramentary/Missal as these were revised following the Second Vatican Council. Expressed on nearly every page was Nocent's conviction that the liturgy and the Word of God proclaimed within it have something important to say to real people of every culture and time. He constantly returns to the question: What does this passage have to say to us today? Now this extraordinary work of applied, postconciliar liturgical scholarship has been revised and annotated by one of today's top liturgical scholars. Paul Turner has provided many helpful explanatory notes on history, culture, language, and, of course, liturgy. He has also updated the liturgical texts to conform to The Roman Missal, Third Edition. The result is a resource that promises to enrich and inspire a new generation of presiders, preachers, liturgy planners, and students.In honor of the fiftieth anniversary of Vatican II's Sacrosanctum Concilium, encounter the vibrant scholarship and pastoral wisdom of Adrien Nocent's The Liturgical Year again or for the first time!Volume 1 covers the liturgical seasons of Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany.Adrien Nocent, OSB (1913-1996), was a Belgian monk and professor at the Pontifical Atheneum of Saint Anselm in Rome. He served as a consultor for the Consilium for the Implementation of the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council, working especially on the revision of Holy Week and of the Lectionary for Mass.Paul Turner is pastor of St. Anthony Parish in Kansas City, Missouri. He is the author of many books on liturgy, including Let Us Pray: A Guide to the Rubrics of Sunday Mass; Glory in the Cross: Holy Week in the Third Edition of The Roman Missal; and When Other Christians Become Catholic, all from Liturgical Press. He is a former president of the North American Academy of Liturgy and is a member of Societas Liturgica and the Catholic Academy of Liturgy. He serves as a facilitator for the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.

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Advent to Pentecost

Comparing the Seasons in the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite

Patrick Regan, OSB Foreword by Rev. Msgr. Kevin W. Irwin

Since 2007, use of the Roman Missal of 1962 has been broadly permitted within the church. This creates, in effect, two liturgical years running concurrently. In Advent to Pentecost, Abbot Patrick Regan compares the prayers and prefaces, readings and rubrics, calendar and chants of the 1962 Missal with those of the Missal as it was revised following the Second Vatican Council, now in its third edition. The result is a striking demonstration of the splendor and superiority of the reformed Missal over its predecessor, at least as far as the liturgical year is concerned. Regan's chapters on Advent, Lent, and the Easter Season are particularly informative because these seasons are so different in the two missals. Perhaps less obvious are the differences between Holy Week and the Triduum. Regan not only describes external modifications in the services as restored by Pius XII in 1956 but explores deeper theological currents, especially in the relationship between the passion and resurrection of the Lord in the one paschal mystery, to show how advances in this area find expression in the current Triduum celebrations and throughout the fifty days of Easter. The originality of the book lies mainly here. The most urgent liturgical challenge today, the author contends, is to raise the ars celebrandi to the same level of excellence as the Missal itself. Patrick Regan, OSB, is professor of liturgy and sacramental theology at the Pontifical Athenaeum of Saint Anselm. He was abbot of his community, Saint Joseph Abbey in Louisiana, for almost twenty years.

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Seasons of the Spirit

Reflections on Finding God in Daily Life

E. Jane Rutter

Move your prayer life to a deeper level with these faith-filled, inspiring reflections. In Seasons of the Spirit, Jane Rutter guides you gently through the rhythms of the church's liturgical seasons including Advent, Lent, Easter, and Ordinary Time. She finds the "God moment" in the actions of daily life: a sports event, taking a walk, fixing cars, waiting in traffic jams, shopping, or canning salsa. Her conversational style reminds you of sharing a cup of coffee at a friend's kitchen table.Lifelong Catholics and new seekers alike will be touched by the simple beauty in these stories. Find a sense of peace from spending a few moments each day with this book as your prayer guide. You will discover anew the wonder of creation and refresh your spirit.E. Jane Rutter is Senior Campaign Manager at The Steier Group, a national fundraising and development firm. A Spanish speaker, she grew up in South America and is a former board member of the International Catholic Stewardship Council. She and her husband David have three children, a granddaughter, and are active in their parish of Sacred Heart.

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Rejoicing with the Prophets

Marci Alborghetti

For Christians, Advent is a time of joyous expectation, and none among God's people had a more fervent anticipation of the Messiah than the prophets. This series of daily reflections will explore how the prophets predicted and described Christ's coming and his impact on the world then and today in ways that will be meaningful for readers as they anticipate Christmas. Each reflection in Rejoicing with the Prophets includes a brief Scripture quote and prayer designed for those who wish to experience a more spiritual and deeply relevant Advent and Christmas season.Marci Alborghetti is the author of 18 books published internationally. Her most recent titles include The Miracle of the Myrrh and The Christmas Glass. She and her husband, Charlie Duffy, divide their time between New London, Connecticut, and Oakland, California, where they are members of an African American Catholic Church, Saint Columba. She is also a contributor to Daily Guideposts.

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It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christ's Mass

Marci Alborghetti

Advent is a frantic time for most people. It is so easy to get caught up with the trappings and traditions of Christmas, that we forget or give short shrift to the deeply spiritual and celebratory origin of this season. This series of daily reflections will make good use of these "trappings and traditions" by tracing their original connections-and how they became associated-with Christ's birth, showing us how to bring a deeper faith-filled meaning to seemingly secular Christmas customs. These daily reflections will truly bring readers a little bit of Christmas to every part of Christmas in their lives.Marci Alborghetti is the author of 18 books published internationally. Her most recent titles include The Miracle of the Myrrh and The Christmas Glass. She and her husband, Charlie Duffy, divide their time between New London, Connecticut, and Oakland, California, where they are members of an African American Catholic Church, Saint Columba. She is also a contributor to Daily Guideposts.

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The Feast of Christmas

Joseph F. Kelly

Many Christians struggle to balance the religious and secular elements of Christmas, but the history of the feast shows that this is nothing new. The religious Christmas has changed over the centuries and, contrary to many critics, is thriving today. This brief, accessible account will explain that: The first Christians did not celebrate Christmas at all. The earliest mention of the feast occurs in the fourth century. In the Middle Ages Christmas moved into northern Europe where it became a major winter festival, competing with the pagan Yule. During the sixteenth century some Christians objected to Christmas because they claimed it had no biblical foundation. In England and New England the Puritans made it a crime to celebrate it! The modern secular Christmas arose in the nineteenth century, but the religious Christmas continued to grow in popularity and meshed well with the developing emphasis on Christmas as a day for family and friends. In today’s world rampant consumerism threatens the religious Christmas, but it continues not only to survive but to flourish, taking on new life and new forms. By tracing these and other aspects of the religious celebration of Christmas through the centuries, Joseph F. Kelly does much more than provide us with interesting facts. He reassures us that though the religious Christmas may not be in its traditional form, it is indeed alive and well—and has a bright and promising future. Joseph F. Kelly, PhD, is professor of religious studies at John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio. He is author of The Origins of Christmas, An Introduction to the New Testament for Catholics, The Collegeville Church History Timeline, The Birth of Jesus According to the Gospels, and The Ecumenical Councils of the Catholic Church, all published by Liturgical Press.

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A Time of Fulfillment

Spiritual Reflections for Advent and Christmas

Anselm Grün, OSB

Allow the mystery of Advent and Christmas to touch and transform you. In A Time of Fulfillment: Spiritual Reflections for Advent and Christmas, Anselm Grün brings fresh meaning to the traditional texts of the season and encourages you to experience the deep peace promised by this holy time of year.Starting with the ancient images of the "O" antiphons, you will rediscover in Advent the profound joy of waiting for Christ's coming. Continuing with the Scriptures of Christmas, you will find new meaning in the mystery of the incarnation.Make your celebration of Advent and Christmas a powerful time of growth and healing. The simple meditations and spiritual exercises in A Time of Fulfillment will help you remember the closeness of Christ in your heart and renew your faith.Anselm Grün, OSB, is a monk of the Benedictine abbey of Münsterschwarzach, Germany, where he has been cellarer since 1977. He is the author of many books, lectures, and courses on themes of spiritual life.

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The Origins of Christmas

Revised Edition

Joseph F. Kelly

When was Christmas first celebrated? How did December 25 become the date for the feast? How did the Bible's "magi from the East" become three kings named Melchior, Caspar, and Balthasar who rode camels from three different continents to worship the newborn Christ? How did the Feast of the Nativity generate an entire liturgical season from Advent to Candlemas? Why did medieval and Renaissance artists portray Joseph as an old man? When did the first Christmas music appear? And who was the real Saint Nicholas?These and many other questions are answered in this revised and expanded edition of The Origins of Christmas. The story of the origins of Christmas is not well known, but it is a fascinating tale. It begins when the first Christians had little interest in Christ's Nativity, and it finishes when Christmas had become an integral part of Christian life and Western culture.The Origins of Christmas covers a variety of topics in a concise and accessible style, and is suitable for group discussions.Joseph F. Kelly, PhD, chair of the department of theology and religious studies at John Carroll University, is active in adult religious education in the Greater Cleveland area. The World of the Early Christians, The Problem of Evil in the Western Tradition, and History and Heresy are among his nine previous books published by Liturgical Press.

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Living Liturgy

Spirituality, Celebration, and Catechesis for Sundays and Solemnities Year B (2018)

Brian Schmisek, Diana Macalintal, and Jay Cormier

Living Liturgy™ is your comprehensive go-to guide for preparing Sunday liturgy. The 2018 edition provides completely new content by a fresh team of expert authors. What you get is practical, sound, and inspiring preparation for your parish ministry. This best-selling annual resource is ideal for parish ministers, liturgists, pastors, planning committees, and RCIA programs. It offers the week's Sunday readings plus insightful reflections and background for parish ministers of all types. Engaging new art by three remarkable artists complements the text. Written completely fresh each liturgical year, Living Liturgy™ gives your team members the spiritual preparation they need to become true ministers of the liturgy.Living Liturgy™ integrates daily living, prayer, and study in one inviting and easy-to-use resource. It is an indispensable guide that deepens and strengthens the worship experience for the whole parish. It includes featured liturgical texts, supports for ministry, and utility features. Consider it an essential resource to connecting the liturgy to leadership so that celebrating the liturgy and living a liturgical spirituality become the focus of each ministry. Featured Liturgical Texts: Collect Gospel Acclamation Gospel Responsorial Psalm First Reading Second Reading Supports for Ministry: Reflecting on the Gospel Living the Paschal Mystery Focusing the Gospel, First Reading, Responsorial Psalm, Second Reading About Liturgy About Liturgical Music About Liturgy About Liturgical Music About Initiation " Prompts for Homilists, Catechists, and RCIA TeamsModel Penitential Act Homily Points Model Universal Prayer (Prayer of the Faithful) Engaging art drawn from the gospel message Utility features: How to use this resource guidePronunciation guide Calendar-dated Perfect-bound Readings in sense lines Brian Schmisek is professor and dean of the Institute of Pastoral Studies at Loyola University Chicago. Prior to coming to Chicago in 2012, he was the founding dean of the School of Ministry at the University of Dallas. His published works include Ancient Faith for the Modern World: A Brief Guide to the Apostles' Creed (ACTA), A Greek Reader for Chase & Phillips (Wipf & Stock), Resurrection of the Flesh or Resurrection from the Dead: Implications for Theology (Liturgical Press), and other works.Diana Macalintal has served as a liturgist, musician, author, speaker, and composer for the last twenty-five years, and her work can be found in Give Us This Day and many other publications. She is the author of The Eucharist Catechist's Guide (Saint Mary's Press), as well as The Work of Your Hands: Prayers for Ordinary and Extraordinary Moments of Grace and Joined by the Church, Sealed by a Blessing: Couples and Communities Called to Conversion Together (Liturgical Press). Macalintal is a cofounder of TeamRCIA.com with her husband, Nick Wagner.Jay Cormier is the deacon and editor of Connections, a monthly newsletter for homilists and preachers. He is an adjunct professor of humanities and communications at St. Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, and leads preaching and liturgy workshops for clergy and laity. Cormier has contributed to America, U.S. Catholic, Worship, and Give Us This Day; and is the author of The Deacon's Ministry of the Word and previous editions of Waiting in Joyful Hope: Daily Reflections for Advent and Christmas and Not by Bread Alone: Daily Reflections for Lent (Liturgical Press).

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Living Liturgy for Music Ministers

Year B (2018)

Brian Schmisek, Diana Macalintal, and Jay Cormier

Inspire music ministers to lead the assembly more effectively in the Liturgy of the Word with Living Liturgy™ for Music Ministers. Fresh content and a new team of contributors offer music ministers the spiritual preparation they need to be confident, strong leaders of sung prayer. The Liturgy of the Word, and particularly the psalm, will come alive in new ways for those involved in music ministry and the entire worshiping assembly. It is the perfect support tool for your parish music ministry. Living Liturgy™ for Music Ministersbegins with the First Sunday of Advent 2017 and includes the following: Readings and responsorial psalm for every Sunday Readings and responsorial psalm for Ash Wednesday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil Mass, and holy days of obligation Reflection on the day's gospel reading Suggestions for psalmist's spiritual preparation and prayers "How-to" guide for using this book Brian Schmisek is professor and dean of the Institute of Pastoral Studies at Loyola University Chicago. Prior to coming to Chicago in 2012, he was the founding dean of the School of Ministry at the University of Dallas. His published works include Ancient Faith for the Modern World: A Brief Guide to the Apostles' Creed (ACTA), A Greek Reader for Chase & Phillips (Wipf & Stock), Resurrection of the Flesh or Resurrection from the Dead: Implications for Theology (Liturgical Press), many other books coauthored for biblical study, and articles.Diana Macalintal has served as a liturgist, musician, author, speaker, and composer for the last twenty-five years, and her work can be found in Give Us This Day and many other publications. She is the author of The Eucharist Catechist's Guide (Saint Mary's Press), as well as The Work of Your Hands: Prayers for Ordinary and Extraordinary Moments of Grace and Joined by the Church, Sealed by a Blessing: Couples and Communities Called to Conversion Together (Liturgical Press). Macalintal is a cofounder of TeamRCIA.com with her husband, Nick Wagner.Jay Cormier is a deacon and editor of Connections, a monthly newsletter for homilists and preachers. He is an adjunct professor of humanities and communications at St. Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, and leads preaching and liturgy workshops for clergy and laity. Cormier has contributed to America, U.S. Catholic, Worship, and Give Us This Day; and is the author of The Deacon's Ministry of the Word and previous editions of Waiting in Joyful Hope: Daily Reflections for Advent and Christmas and Not by Bread Alone: Daily Reflections for Lent (Liturgical Press).

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Not By Bread Alone

Daily Reflections for Lent 2018

Michelle Francl-Donnay

Prayerfully journey through Lent with Michelle Francl-Donnay's fresh and meaningful reflections on the daily Mass readings. In just minutes per day, the insightful meditations of Not by Bread Alone can deepen your experience of this solemn season of prayer and penance and prepare you to participate more fully in the joy of the great Easter mystery. Michelle Francl-Donnay is a writer, teacher, wife, and the mother of two college-aged sons. Her regular column, Catholic Spirituality, appears at the Philadelphia Archdiocese's news site, CatholicPhilly.com. She is a professor of chemistry at Bryn Mawr College and an adjunct scholar of the Vatican Observatory. She blogs about faith and science at http://mfrancldonnay.blogspot.com/ and is a contributor to Give Us This Day, published by Liturgical Press

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