In church buildings and chapels around the globe immediately, monks and sacristans will transfer the ribbons within the Sacramentary to the prayers for the First Sunday of Creation and within the Lectinary to the Creation scriptures. The ribbons for the Creation Sunday prayers and readings brings us again to the entrance of the 2 books such that the left hand web page of every doesn’y simply lie flat however buckles up a bit towards the best hand aspect which holds a yr’s price of pages but to be turned, prayed and proclaimed.
It is a easy gesture, shifting these ribbons, however one which reminds us that the Church is starting a brand new yr, one other yr of celebrating our life in Christ and the saving occasions and style that bind us collectively as his Physique, the Church. Because the seasons of nature repeat and produce us again to spring annually, so do the seasons of worship cycle again to those Creation days after which ahead to Easter.
This primary Sunday of a brand new liturgical yr jogs my memory of what number of occasions I’ve lived by means of this cycle as a priest. I can look again now on 49 Creation wreaths; 49 Christmases; 49 Lents, Holy Weeks, Triduums and Pentecosts: and shut to five many years of Sundays in Bizarre Time! These 49 years have discovered me ministering in St. Ann Parish in Wollaston; at Moreau Seminary and Morrissey Corridor on the College of Notre Dame; at St. Ann Parish in Boston for Northeastern College and Emerson School; at St. Joseph Parish in Medway, for 25 years at Our Woman Assist of Christians and Holy Household Parishes in Harmony; then 2 years at Saint Luke Parish in Belmont and now at Good Shepherd Parish in Wayland.
After I started turning ribbons, I typically wasn’t altogether certain the place they had been alleged to go – after which there have been years after I questioned if I ought to keep within the ribbon-turning enterprise or go away it. Early on, I modified the ribbons in occasions when I discovered the Sacramentary to be limiting and confining however in years the Church’s missal turned an outdated and trusted good friend. I’ve really worn out a Sacramentary or two and even earlier than buying and selling in for a brand new copy, the ribbons can and generally do should be changed.
I’ve turned ribbons again to Creation in good occasions and in dangerous, in years of the Church’s grace – and years of shame. These ribbons and the books they mark have been with me for almost 5 many years: I thank God for the grace of all these years born of the prayers, rites and scriptures the liturgical books present for us.
And now one other new Yr of Grace is starting and as soon as once more I will be blessing an Creation wreath and lighting its first candle – and opening the e book to a web page marked by a ribbon and praying these lovely phrases for the forty ninth time:
Father in heaven,
our hearts want the heat of your love
and our minds are looking out
for the sunshine of your Phrase.
Improve our eager for Christ our Savior
and provides us the power to develop in love,
that the daybreak of his coming
might discover us rejoicing in his presence
and welcoming the sunshine of his fact.
A cheerful and blessed Creation to you all!