Crossed The Tiber

An Evangelical Converts to Catholicism

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I was born into the Catholic faith. At 14, I was "born again" and found Jesus personally but lost His Church. After thirty years as an evangelical protestant, I have come full circle to find that He has been there all the time, in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. I wish others to find the beauty and truth of the Catholic faith as I have found.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Today the Advent Season Begins

Today Advent begins. This is the beginning of a new Church year. The Church once again reminds its faithful to wait with joy and hope for the coming of the Savior. We are given the opportunity to reflect on what the Incarnation means to us personally, and to let that reflection change our lives. Like Lent, this has been a period marked by fasting and penitence and has been celebrated by the Church since the 4th century. Once again, the Holy Spirit, by way of the celebrations of the liturgical year, bids us to refocus our hearts on Him.


St Charles Borromeo in the 16th century said this about Advent:

Each year, as the Church recalls this mystery, she urges us to renew the memory of the great love God has shown us. This holy season teaches us that Christ’s coming was not only for the benefit of his contemporaries; his power has still to be communicated to us all. We shall share his power, if, through holy faith and the sacraments, we willingly accept the grace Christ earned for us, and live by that grace and in obedience to Christ.

Beloved, now is the acceptable time spoken of by the Spirit, the day of salvation, peace and reconciliation: the great season of Advent. This is the time eagerly awaited by the patriarchs and prophets, the time that holy Simeon rejoiced at last to see.

This is the season that the Church has always celebrated with special solemnity. We too should always observe it with faith and love, offering praise and thanksgiving to the Father for the mercy and love he has shown us in this mystery. In his infinite love for us, though we were sinners, he sent his only Son to free us from the tyranny of Satan, to summon us to heaven, to welcome us into its innermost recesses, to show us truth itself, to train us in right conduct, to plant within us the seeds of virtue, to enrich us with the treasures of his grace, and to make us children of God and heirs of eternal life.Anunciation by Fra Angelico


Each year, as the Church recalls this mystery, she urges us to renew the memory of the great love God has shown us. This holy season teaches us that Christ’s coming was not only for the benefit of his contemporaries; his power has still to be communicated to us all. We shall share his power, if, through holy faith and the sacraments, we willingly accept the grace Christ earned for us, and live by that grace and in obedience to Christ.


The Church asks us to understand that Christ, who came once in the flesh, is prepared to come again. When we remove all obstacles to his presence he will come, at any hour and moment, to dwell spiritually in our hearts, bringing with him the riches of his grace.


Elijah AscendsIn her concern for our salvation, our loving mother the Church uses this holy season to teach us through hymns, canticles and other forms of expression, of voice or ritual, used by the Holy Spirit. She shows us how grateful we should be for so great a blessing, and how to gain its benefit: our hearts should be as much prepared for the coming of Christ as if he were still to come into this world. The same lesson is given us for our imitation by the words and example of the holy men of the Old Testament.

5 Comments:

Anonymous Nancy said...

Happy New Year, TJ, in a liturgical sense of course.

I love Advent. With the Christmas hype out in the world at large seemingly being amped up earlier and earlier, for me Advent is the time to escape the nuttiness out there and to get the interior silence with which to hear the Lord.

And this first week of Advent marks one year since I started regular weekly adoration. It's done wonders for my spiritual life, I can tell you.

November 29, 2009 6:08 PM  
Blogger Tiber Jumper said...

Happy New Year to you as well!
That's so great to hear about adoration. A little time spent with Jesus is always good, but being before Him in the Blessed Sacrament is the best, well, next to receiving Him personally in the Eucharist.
A great thing about adoration is that you don't have to be Catholic even to benefit from this.
God bless

November 30, 2009 8:04 AM  
Blogger raul mahipos said...

Its wonderful blog.God bless you always,for the Glory of God forever, best regards & good health..
from: raul in cebu ,phillippines

December 01, 2009 8:20 AM  
Blogger Joyful Catholic said...

TJ, you wrote: "A great thing about adoration is that you don't have to be Catholic even to benefit from this." How I wish my Protestant friends would go. Maybe this year I should invite them. Wondering if you've ever done so and if so, how'd it go? Would they? I know Fr. Groschel speaks about those holy joyful Baptist women in the neighbourhood that go "sit with Jesus." I've been somewhat lax of late, with all our travels and such. Need to get back to the tender bosom of Our Lord in the beautiful adoration chapel we have open 24/7 at our parish. You never know if someday that won't be possible any longer...

December 03, 2009 6:11 PM  
Blogger Tiber Jumper said...

Susie:
Deborah's friend, a baptist was interested in the concept, so Deborah started taking her to adoration from time to time. 4 years later her friend is now a member of the Catholic Church!
That being said, I do think it is the rare protestant who is willing to let go of the anti-catholic voices long enough to get a glimpse of who is really there.

December 04, 2009 8:38 AM  

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