Algoma Deanery Week of November 28, 2022

Good day…it is a gorgeous, sunny day outside my window at the moment. 🙂

Here’s what’s coming up

Wednesday, November 30: St. Andrew’s Day service, 10:30am at the Cathedral. Holy Eucharist followed by fellowship.

Saturday, December 3: Holy Trinity’s Christmas Market at the Trinity Centre, 10am – 4pm; bake table, jams, pickles.

Saturday, December 10: Emmaus’ Meat Pie Luncheon and Bake Table. $14. Two sittings – 11:30am or 12:30pm. For tickets please call either Edie Leblanc at 705 759 2850 or Emmaus Church at 705 759 2545.

Christmas Dainties (30 pieces) from Christ Church. $25. Order by Dec.11. Pick up Dec.16 at the church. Contact Bonnie Lyons at 705-779-2858 or email lyons.bonnie@gmail.com or Laura Avery at 705-254-2477 or email lau.ave88@hotmail.com.

A Liturgical Note For You:

Decorating Your Church for Christmas: Since the Advent season is very important in our ongoing transformation as Christians, how can we be true to this liturgical season – that is, how can we not look like we’ve skipped from “The Reign of Christ” to “Christmas” in our worship spaces? When should we be going all out with the Christmas decorations?  There is actually an answer to this: December 17.  Okay, so why December 17? This is the octave before Christmas Eve – the final thematic phase of Advent when we turn our hearts and minds toward the anticipation of the nativity of our Lord.  Beginning on Dec.17, the ancient “O Antiphons” (more below) are used during Evening Prayer services when one antiphon is said/chanted before and after the Magnificat.  Practically speaking, the date of December 17 means that we should decorate our worship spaces with “Christmas” stuff no earlier than after our worship services on the 2nd Sunday of Advent. This does not mean we can’t put out any decorations at all but anything specifically Christmas themed – especially the Nativity Scene – really shouldn’t make an appearance until closer to Christmas. Let’s let the Advent Wreath be the eye-catcher during Advent. 

The Ancient Advent Antiphons are used during the final week leading up to Christmas Eve (so from Dec.17 through until Dec.23). These are called the “O Antiphons” – because they all start with “O” – and are said or sung before and after the Magnificat at evening prayer on these days. The McCausland‘s says, “They are addressed to God, calling for him to come as teacher and deliverer, with a tapestry of scriptural titles and pictures that describe his saving work in Christ.” We know that these were in use by the 700’s A.D. but we don’t know who wrote them or when. Here they are for your use (P.S. much of these will seem familiar if you’ve been using the litany for Advent on p.119 of the BAS for the Intercessions and Thanksgivings):

December 17th: O Sapientia: O Wisdom, coming forth from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from one end to the other mightily, and sweetly ordering all things: Come and teach us the way of prudence. 

December 18th: O Adonai: O Adonai, and leader of the House of Israel, who appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush and gave him the law on Sinai: Come and redeem us with an outstretched arm.

December 19th: O Radix Jesse: O Root of Jesse, standing as a sign among the peoples; before you kings will shut their mouths, to you the nations will make their prayer: Come and deliver us, and delay no longer.

December 20th: O Clavis David: O Key of David and sceptre of the House of Israel; you open and no one can shut; you shut and no one can open: Come and lead the prisoners from the prison house, those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

December 21st: O Oriens: O Morning Star, splendour of light eternal and sun of righteousness: Come and enlighten those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

December 22nd: O Rex Gentium: O King of the nations, and their desire, the cornerstone making both one: Come and save the human race, which you fashioned from clay.

December 23rd: O Emmanuel: O Emmanuel, our King and our lawgiver, the hope of the nations and their Saviour: Come and save us, O Lord our God.

For Your Devotions:

Wednesday, November 30th is the Holy Day of St. Andrew the Apostle. In Greek, Andrew’s name means “manly.” In the Synoptic Gospels, Andrew and his brother Peter were called to “fish for people.”  Legend has it that Andrew was crucified on an x-shaped cross which is why there is an ‘x’ on the Scottish flag since he is their patron saint. To read more:   https://www.britannica.com/biography/Saint-Andrew

Saturday, December 3rd is the commemoration of Francis Xavier, Missionary to the Far East, died in 1552.  He was born into nobility and went to France to study at the University of Paris. In 1529, a student by the name of Ignatius of Loyola was assigned to room with Francis and the rest is history, as they say. Ignatius recruited Francis to be one of the seven original Jesuits and his call led him to both India and Japan. He reportedly baptized about 30 000 people in his short career. The zealous missionary succumbed to a fever, at just 46 years of age, on his way to attempt entry into China. More info:  https://www.britannica.com/biography/Saint-Francis-Xavier

May the hope of Advent fill you with joy,

Susan

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