Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Advent and Rorate Coeli

My friend Chrissy over at Living in the Midwest put up a nice post on Advent which everyone should go and read. Advent has long been my favorite time of the year even before entering the Church. I think that is because at this time of the year I am reminded that the world still needs its Savior to come. Even though he was already, and still is, here with us even to the end of time, the work is not complete. And so the Church gives us reminders of his second coming for us to think about.

But what are all the lights, gifts. and the pre-Christmas bustle all about? People turn to material things to make up what is lacking in themselves. They are searching for the Savior. At this time of the year material things have taken the place of the true Savior but the desire in society is still the same. Its just that some have rejected the true One. There is no true happiness apart from God. As St. Augustine famously put it "Our hearts are restless Lord, until they rest in Thee." Society tries to solve its restlessness with material things. Its flipped upsidedown. Outside things cannot make you inwardly happy.

Those people who have rejected Christ are, whether they know it or not, still waiting for Him. They are waiting for the houseguest at the wrong entrance.


Check out Isaiah 45:8f

8 Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the just: let the earth be opened, and bud forth a saviour: and let justice spring up together: I the Lord have created him. 9 Woe to him that gainsayeth his maker, a sherd of the earthen pots: shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it: What art thou making, and thy work is without hands?
10 Woe to him that saith to his father: Why begettest thou? and to the woman: Why dost thou bring forth?
11 Thus saith the Lord the Holy One of Israel, his maker: Ask me of things to come, concerning my children, and concerning the work of my hands give ye charge to me.
12 I made the earth: and I created man upon it: my hand stretched forth the heavens, and I have commanded all their host.
13 I have raised him up to justice, and I will direct all his ways: he shall build my city, and let go my captives, not for ransom, nor for presents, saith the Lord the God of hosts.

The forgotten Hymn of the Roman Liturgy in most modern parishes today, has been for a while now my absolute favorite of the entire year. Of course, it is the Rorate Coeli.

Rorate Coeli

Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One.

Be not angry, O Lord, and remember no longer our iniquity : behold the city of thy sanctuary is become a desert, Sion is made a desert. Jerusalem is desolate, the house of our holiness and of thy glory, where our fathers praised thee.

Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One.

We have sinned, and we are become as one unclean, and we have all fallen as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast crushed us by the hand of our iniquity.

Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One.

See, O Lord, the affliction of thy people, and send him whom thou hast promised to send. Send forth the Lamb, the ruler of the earth, from the rock of the desert to the mount of the daughter of Sion, that he himself may take off the yoke of our captivity.

Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One.

Be comforted, be comforted, my people; thy salvation shall speedily come. Why wilt thou waste away in sadness? why hath sorrow seized thee? I will save thee; fear not: for I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Redeemer.

Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One.

Translation from this site.

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