Hello everyone, good morning to you

I do hope that your week is going well for you so far.  Welcome to Wednesday’s Spiritual Lift.

Season of Advent 2020:

As we continue into Week 2 of Advent, our scripture reading this week for prayer and reflection comes from: St Mark’s Gospel (Mark 1:2-4) Quotation taken from the CTS New Catholic Bible.

“It is written in the book of the Prophet Isaiah :‘Look, I am going to send my messenger before you; he will prepare your way: A voice cries in the wilderness: Prepare a way for the Lord, make his paths straight’,  and so it was that John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.”

Today we remember Saint Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin. In the year 1531, Our Lady appeared to Juan Diego as he was on his way to Mass on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.  Here is some information and a video all about him and his feast day today from www.catholic.org.


Season of Advent 2020:

We are continuing our journey through the joyful and hopeful Season of Advent.  

A lovely tradition within the Church is to pray and reflect on the Family Tree of Jesus Christ Our Lord and Saviour.  It is called a ‘Jesse Tree’ and with prayers, scripture readings and reflections, along with symbols relating to each day of the devotion these are hung on a tree throughout December and the Season of Advent. The ‘Jesse Tree’ links us up with the Genealogy – the Family line -of Jesus as recorded in St Matthew’s Gospel, all the way from Abraham to Jesus Himself. (Matthew 1:1-16)

The ‘tree’ can be either a paper one, the main Christmas Tree in the family room or a special little tree, made from evergreens for this use.

It is called a ‘Jesse Tree’, because Jesse was the father of King David, and Jesus is related to King David because He is of the Family Line and House of David through St Joseph.  This was part of the Lord’s plan for our redemption and salvation through Jesus.  St Joseph, foster-father and guardian of Jesus and Husband of Mary, Our Lady, was of the Family Line of David, which is why Jesus was born in Bethlehem because David’s Line originated here.  Here is some information about this devotion and tradition in the link below.

Here is the link again for you to help you reflect and pray with the Jesse Tree devotions.


Month of December:

Following the cycle of the Liturgical Year and the Cycle of prayer link here:


During the month of December, we are encouraged to read and discover the many treasures of God’s Word, the Holy Scriptures and pray for Expectant Mothers, especially as we remember Our Lady as she carried the unborn Jesus, we pray also for Migrants and Refugees.  As we read and ponder the first Christmas and Epiphany with the journeys undertaken by the Holy Family, we remember that they too were migrants to Bethlehem from Nazareth and later from Bethlehem to Egypt and then from Egypt back to Nazareth many years later.

Our prayer this month:

(Mar’anatha – Aramaic – the language Jesus would have spoken – which means, come, Lord Jesus! Revelation 22:20 and c.f. 1 Corinthians 16:22d)

Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus! 

Our daily Advent scripture today comes from: The Book of the Prophet Isaiah: (Isaiah 40:28,29) Quotation taken from the CTS New Catholic Bible.

“Did you not know? Had you not heard? The Lord is an everlasting God, he created the boundaries of the earth.  He does not grow tired or weary, his understanding is beyond fathoming. He gives strength to the wearied, he strengthens the powerless.”

We now begin to count down to the day when we remember Jesus’ first coming at Christmas. The Son of God chose to become a tiny baby, born in Bethlehem, wrapped in cloths and laid in a manger in a stable.  Although He is the King above all kings, Jesus chose to be born in poverty to make us spiritually rich.  He was there in the stable because there was no room for Him and Mary and Joseph in the Inn as the first Roman Census was taking place.

Advent Calendar picture today and scripture to help us pause, ponder, pray and reflect.  Our scripture is taken from the CTS New Catholic Bible. 

Today as we open our window on the Advent Calendar today, 9th December, the symbol and picture on our virtual Calendar is of an Inn-keeper with a lantern.

Our scripture verses today taken from the CTS New Catholic Bible come from St Luke’s Gospel (Luke 2:7)

“While they were there the time came for her to have her child, and she gave birth to a son, her first-born.  She wrapped him in swaddling-clothes, and laid him in a manger because there was no room for them in the Inn.”

Today as we open the window on our Advent Calendar, we are reminded that Our Lord Jesus, the King of kings and Lord of lords was born, not in a Royal palace or great Hall, but in a cold, draughty, smelly stable.   He was laid, not in a beautiful soft bed made from the finest materials of crafted wood decorated with gold and precious stones, sleeping on fine linen and warm blankets, but in a rough wooden manger – an animal feed-trough- full of straw and in strips of cloth.  Jesus is the humble Servant-King who identifies Himself with the poor, those on the edge of society and those excluded.  There was no room for Him in the Inn on that first Christmas.  As we approach this lovely feast of Our Saviour’s Birth, are we ready to welcome Jesus in our hearts and make a special place for Him to stay or will we, like the Inn, turn Him away and say there is no room for Him, just as there was no room at His first coming?

Daily special candle offered for MAC Staff, pupils and their families – Autumn Term 2- November-December 2020.

As we continue to journey forth into a new Half Term and as we live in these uncertain and trying days both here in our school Communities and in our day to day lives in our families, neighbourhoods and wider communities, let us continue to place all our prayers and petitions into Our Lady’s hands.   Every day this week and throughout the whole of this Half Term, a special candle will burn again for us all in honour of Our Lady of Lourdes.  May she keep us all safe and well under her protective mantle.  May your days and weeks go well for you, your pupils, and their families in these days within all the School Communities in our MAC.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us. Amen.

St Thomas More, pray for us. Amen.

St Peter, pray for us. Amen.

St Bede the Venerable, pray for us, Amen.

St Augustine of Canterbury, pray for us.  Amen.

Rosary prayer-time, a spiritual bouquet of heavenly roses: From 8-8.30pm this evening.
Tonight, as it is Wednesday, once again all are invited to come together in spirit and prayer this evening to pray the Rosary in our homes. You are most welcome to join us in spirit and prayer during this special time tonight.  You can pray the whole set of Mysteries, just one Hail Mary or offer your own prayers and thoughts during this time. 

During the Season of Advent, we are encouraged to pray the Joyful Mysteries as they help us to remember the Incarnation, Birth and early Childhood of our Saviour and Lord, Jesus Christ.  During the cycle of prayer for the Rosary this week, we will be praying the Luminous Mysteries.  Let us remember that however we choose to pray, whether it is the full Rosary of 4 Mysteries, just one set of one of the Mysteries or simply a Hail Mary, our own prayers or thoughts, our loving God hears us and He works all things to our good.

As we pray each Hail Mary, we offer a beautiful rose to Our Lady as the fruits of our prayers.  She then gathers them all up and presents them to Jesus, our loving Lord.  May we continue to place ourselves in His hands during these days and ask for His help and strength. Our focus and intentions are to ask Our Blessed Lady in Heaven, Health of the Sick, Comforter of the Afflicted to join her prayers with ours as we petition our loving God to help, guide and support us during these days of trial and anxiety. 

Our daily scripture reading today comes from: St Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians (Eph 1:4,5) Quotation taken from the CTS New Catholic Bible.

“Before the world was made, he (God) chose us, chose us in Christ, to be holy and spotless, and to live through love in his presence, determining that we should become his adopted sons (and daughters) through Jesus Christ for his own kind purposes.”

Our prayers for today: 

Today, I will be keeping a candle burning for your intentions.

Let us ask…..

Our Lady, Mary, the Immaculate Conception, pray for us. Amen.

Our Lady of Consolation, pray for us.  Amen.

Mary the Mother of Jesus, Mother of the Church, pray for us.  Amen.

Our Lady of Lourdes, Patron of our Archdiocese and our MAC, Health of the Sick and Comforter of the Afflicted, pray for us. Amen.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Beauty of Carmel, pray for us.  Amen.

St Luke, Beloved Physician (Doctor) and companion of St Paul the Apostle, Patron of Doctors and Healthcare professionals, pray for us. Amen.

St Jude Thaddeus, Patron of impossible or difficult circumstances, pray for us.  Amen.

St Raphael, Archangel, God’s healing Angel, pray for us.  Amen.

St Catherine of Siena, Patron of Nurses, pray for us.  Amen.

St Camillus of Lellis, Patron of the Sick, pray for us. Amen.

St Sebastian, patron of the sick and plagues of disease, pray for us.  Amen. 

St John Henry Newman, pray for us.  Amen.

Blessed Dominic Barberi, pray for us.  Amen.

St Juan Diego, pray for us.  Amen.

Blessings to you all on this day.

Miss Downes





Categories: Catholic Life

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