Category Archives: Circumcision

Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord Jesus Christ

 

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A Blessed Feast of the Circumcision and Happy New Year!  You will find excellent meditations and instruction for this great feast attached below.

We hear much fuss made annually about “New Year resolutions”, only for them to be broken and given up on quickly.  For faithful Catholics, our New Year resolutions should be to correct our most significant vice and turn it into great virtue.  And if we happen to slip up a bit, we simply ask God’s forgiveness and continue!  A soldier does not abandon the fight at the first failing!  No, he rather places his trust in God and continues with an even greater strength!  Once this vice has become virtue, we will find our other faults going in the same direction and perfection will not be far away.

Being the 100th anniversary of the Fatima Apparitions, some Catholics fear for a trying year in the Church and the world.  Certainly the current state of matters may not inspire much optimism.  However, we Catholics are not necessarily required to have the abstract feeling of “optimism”, but the great virtue of Hope.  While many in Rome continue to stray from the doctrines of the True Faith, Tradition is only ever the stronger for it.  There are more Traditional priests, religious, and laity than at any time since the Second Vatican Council.  There is even a certain, albeit smaller awakening in the “official” Church structures itself!  If good Catholics simply keep the True Faith with Charity and without going to compromises or “extremes”, then only the Modernists should have to worry.  Let us pray for their conversion.

The Damsel and I extend our prayers to our readers that they might have a truly Holy New Year.

From Fr. Leonard Goffine:

 

New Years Day

Why is this day so called?

Because the secular year begins with this day, as the Church year begins with the First Sunday in Advent.

What should we do on this day?

An offering of the new year should be made to God, asking His grace that we may spend the year in a holy manner, for the welfare of the soul.

Why do we wish each other a “happy new year“?

Because to do so is an act of Christian love; but this wish should come from the heart, and not merely from worldly politeness, otherwise we would be like the heathens (Mt. 5:47), and receive no other reward than they.

What feast of the Church is celebrated today?

The Feast of the Circumcision of our Lord, Who, for love of us, voluntarily subjected Himself to the painful law of the Old Covenant, that we might be freed from the same.

What was the Circumcision?

It was an external sign of the Old Law, by which the people of that day were numbered among the chosen people of God, as now they become, by baptism, members of the Church of Christ.

What is the signification of Circumcision in the moral or spiritual sense?

It signifies the mortification of the senses, of evil desires, and inclinations. This must be practiced by Christians now, since they have promised it in baptism which would be useless to them without the practice of mortification; just as little as the Jew by exterior Circumcision is a true Jew, just so little is the baptized a true Christian without a virtuous life. Beg of Christ, therefore, today, to give you the grace of the true Circumcision of heart.

PRAYER I thank Thee, O Lord Jesus, because Thou hast shed Thy blood for me in Circumcision, and beg Thee that by Thy precious blood I may receive the grace to circumcise my heart and all my senses, so that I may lead a life of mortification in this world, and attain eternal joys in the next. Amen.

[The INTROIT of the Mass is the same as is said in the Third Mass on Christmas.]

COLLECT O God, Who, by the fruitful virginity of blessed Mary, hast bestowed upon mankind the rewards of eternal salvation; grant, we beseech Thee, that we may feel the benefit of her intercession for us, through whom we have deserved to receive the author of life, our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who livest and reignest, etc.

[The EPISTLE is the same as is said in the First Mass on Christmas.]

GOSPEL (Lk. 2:21). At that time, after eight days were accomplished that the child should be circumcised, his name was called Jesus, which was called by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

Why did Jesus submit to Circumcision?

That He might show His great love for us, which caused Him even at the very beginning of His life, to shed His blood to cleanse us thereby from all our sins. Furthermore to teach us obedience to the commandments of God and His Church, since He voluntarily subjected Himself to the Jewish law, although He was not in the least bound by it, which ordered that every male child should be circumcised on the eighth day after its birth (Lev. 12:3).

Why was He named Jesus?

Because Jesus means Redeemer and Savior, and He had come to redeem and save the world (Mt. 1:21). This is the holiest, most venerable, and most powerful name by which we can be saved.

What power has this name?

The greatest power, for it repels all attacks of the evil Spirit, as Jesus Himself says (Mk. 16:17). And so great is the efficacy of this most holy name that even those who are not righteous, can by it expel devils (Mt. 7:22). It has power to cure physical pains and evils, as when used by the apostles (Acts. 3:3-7), and Christ promised that the faithful by using it could do the same (Mk. 16:17).

St. Bernard calls the name of Jesus a “Medicine“; and St. Chrysostom says, “This name cures all ills; it gives succor in all the ailments of the soul, in temptations, in faintheartedness, in sorrow, and in all evil desires, etc.” “Let him who cannot excite contrition in his heart for the sins he has committed, think of the loving, meek, and suffering Jesus, invoke His holy name with fervor and confidence, and he will feel his heart touched and made better,” says St. Lawrence Justinian.

It overcomes and dispels the temptations of the enemy: “When we fight against Satan in the name of Jesus,” says the martyr St. Justin, “Jesus fights for us, in us, and with us, and the enemies must flee as soon as they hear the name of Jesus.”

It secures us help and blessings in all corporal and spiritual necessities, because nothing is impossible to him who asks in the name of Jesus, whatever tends to his salvation will be given him (Jn. 14:13).

Therefore it is useful above all things, to invoke this holy name in all dangers of body and soul, in doubts, in temptations, especially in temptations against holy chastity, and still more so when one has fallen into sin, from which he desires to be delivered; for this name is like oil (Cant. 1:2) which cures, nourishes, and illumines.

How must this name be pronounced to experience its power?

With lively faith, with steadfast, unshaken confidence, with deep­est reverence and devotion, for in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those that are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth (Phil. 2:10). What wickedness, then, is theirs who habitually pronounce this name carelessly and irreverently, upon every occasion! Such a habit is certainly diabolical; for the damned and the devils constantly abuse God and His holy name.

Why does this name so seldom manifest its power in our days?

Because Christian faith is daily becoming weaker, and confidence less, while perfect submission to the will of God is wanting. When faith grows stronger among people, and confidence greater, then will the power of this most sacred name manifest itself in more wonderful and consoling aspects.

Prayer to Jesus in difficulties

O Jesus! Consolation of the afflicted! Thy name is indeed poured out like oil; for Thou dost illumine those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death; Thou dost disperse the blindness of the soul and dost cure its ills; Thou givest food and drink to those who hunger and thirst after justice. Be also, O Jesus! my Savior, the phy­sician of my soul, the healer of its wounds. O Jesus! Succor of those who are in need, be my protector in temptations! O Jesus! Father of the poor, do Thou nourish me! O Jesus! joy of the angels, do Thou comfort me! O Jesus! my only hope and refuge, be my helper in the hour of death, for there is given us no other name beneath the sun by which we may be saved, but Thy most blessed name Jesus!

EXHORTATION St. Paul says: All whatsoever you do in word or in work, all things do ye in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ (Col. 3:17). We should, therefore, follow the example of the saints, and continually say, at least in our hearts: “For love of Thee, O Jesus, I rise; for love of Thee I lie down; for love of Thee I eat, drink, and enjoy myself; for love of Thee I work, speak, or am silent.” Thus we will accustom ourselves to do all in the name of Jesus, by which everything is easily or at least meritoriously accomplished.

Prayer to be said on New Years Day

O God, Heavenly Father of Mercy, God of all Consolation! we thank Thee that from our birth to this day, Thou hast so well pre­served us, and hast protected us in so many dangers; we beseech Thee, through the merits of Thy beloved Son, and by His sacred blood which He shed for us on this day in His circumcision, to for­give all the sins which, during the past year, we have committed against Thy commandments, by which we have aroused Thy indig­nation and wrath against ourselves. Preserve us in the coming year from all sins, and misfortunes of body and soul. Grant that from this day to the end of our lives, all our senses, thoughts, words, and works, which we here dedicate to Thee for all time, may be directed in accordance with Thy will, and that we may finally die in the true Catholic Faith, and enjoy with Thee in Thy kingdom a joyful new year, that shall know no end. Amen.

Originally posted on sspx.org:

On the eighth day Christ was circumcised

December 31, 2015

Eight days after Our Lords birth, Jesus was circumcised according to the law of the Old Covenant, an event that is commemorated on January 1st.

In the Missale Romanum, January 1st is entitled In Octava Nativitatis Domini—or as rendered in English: “the Octave (Eighth) Day of the Nativity.” Not only does this day complete the Nativity Octave, but it also commemorates an important event in Christs infancy, His circumcision, as we read in the Gospel of St. Luke sung during the Mass:

And after eight days were accomplished, that the child should be circumcised, his name was called JESUS, which was called by the angel, before he was conceived in the womb.”

This is also why the octave day is known as the Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord.

We also read in the Gospel account that during Our Lords circumcision, the name He was given to the Blessed Virgin Mary during the Annunciation, JESUS (meaning, “Yahweh saves”) was formally bestowed upon Him. However, the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Jesus is not celebrated until the first Sunday after the Nativity Octave, which this year falls on January 3rd.

To commemorate the Octave Day in the Nativity of Our Lord—which also starts the secular calendar year—we offer some citations from Sacred Scripture about circumcision in the Old Covenant and a poem reflecting on this event in the redemptive life of Our Savior, Jesus Christ.

What does New Years Day mean for Catholics?>


The Old Covenant of Circumcision in Holy Writ

Again God said to Abraham: And thou therefore shalt keep my covenant, and thy seed after thee in their generations. This is my covenant which you shall observe, between me and you, and thy seed after thee: All the male kind of you shall be circumcised: And you shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin, that it may be for a sign of the covenant between me and you. An infant of eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations: he that is born in the house, as well as the bought servant shall be circumcised, and whosoever is not of your stock: And my covenant shall be in your flesh for a perpetual covenant. Genesis 17:9-13

And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying …If a woman having received seed shall bear a man child …on the eighth day the infant shall be circumcised. Leviticus 12:1-3


On the eighth day Christ was circumcised

Circumcised
on the eighth day,[1]
His meek parents
humbly obey
the law of Moses,[2]
the rite of Abraham,[3]
who rejoiced
to see His day,[4]
Infant King
does humbly subject
(He does not object);
for, after all,
He the King of kings
wrote the law,
which He came
not to abolish,
but to fulfill,[5]
He the Fullness,[6]
the Lamb of God,[7]
Son of Righteousness,
Whom the self-righteous
unrighteously did kill,[8]
the Good Shepherd,[9]
Who came
to seek and save
the lost,[10]
would on the eighth day,
His Precious Blood shed,
the price,
the cost,
the recompense
paid in full
for the guilty…
by His Innocence…
magnanimous
munificence!

Like Abraham,
who in humble obedience,
took his son Isaac
and raised the knife
in order to offer
the sacrifice
to God the Father,[11]
Saint Joseph,
son of David,[12]
Juda’s great King,
wields the knife
to his Divine Offspring;
though, in this case,
his hand
is not stayed,
and so,
the innocent Flesh
of the Word
is flayed;
the first dew drops
of our salvation
do lovingly pour
from the meek,
little Lamb, Who
just eight days before
from the virginal ewe
in the fullness of time,[13]
came into the world,
in coldness of clime;
sweet, little Babe,
Lamb without stain,
sheds His Pure Blood,
for the descendants
of Cain;
He, Who was born
to His own in disdain,[14]
outcast in animals’ stable,
offers His Blood,
despising the pain,
as did His ancestor Abel[15]

And so…
we remember
our Savior’s first wound,
which He did willfully suffer,
just eight days from leaving,
the Immaculate womb
of His most blessed mother;
meek Lamb,
so pure and undefiled,
tiny, sweet Innocent Child,
at the breast still,
for us, He did spill,
His Most Precious Blood…
Fount of our Redemption

And so…
let us
pause,
reflect,
meditate,
ponder…
O the pain!
the price,
the cost
of the Lamb,
Who came
to save His lost
sheep,
who did wander,
so far away…
our transgressions
cast into derision
and utter humiliation
the Son of God,
the Word Made Flesh,
the Virgin’s Pure Babe,
Whose Blood was shed
willingly,
lovingly,
by Him, the Incarnation,
our innocent Infant King…
in His Circumcision.


Footnotes

1 Luke 2:21.

2 Leviticus 12:3; John 7:22.

3 Genesis 17:10-12.

4 John 8:56.

5 Matthew 5:17.

6 Colossians 1:19.

7 John 1:29, 36.

8 John 11:49-53.

9 John 10:11, 14.

10 Luke 19:10.

11 Genesis 22:1-13.

12 Luke 2:4.

13 Galatians 4:4.

14 John 1:11.

15 Genesis 4:1-10.

~ Steven C., “The Knight of Tradition”