Host upon the Altar

Pristine the whiteness
Engulfed in radiant flame,
Golden the rays,
Set about Your throne upon the altar.
For all the beauty of the monstrance,
You outshine the artist’s creation,
Just as You outshine Creation.

Give me eyes to see the Reality.
My eyes are designed to apprehend matter.
Here, You give us Mystery, Divinity.
I long to look upon Your fleshly Flesh,
To see Your locks curl mildly on Your shoulders,
To see the flash of smile and twinkle of the eye,
Majesty of manner, and goodly gentleness.

I gaze upon the Host,
All the while my heart and mind
Bring visions to the fore.
Power subdued in obedience,
Might bowed to the Father’s Will,
Abandonment, a fulfillment of prophetic word,
Suffering and salvific.

A Babe, a Boy, a Man,
Commending unto You
From womb to tomb,
In ignominy, yet dignity,
A Life and Death
Swallowing up Your wrath.

He bequeathed to us His Mother,
His ark and monstrance,
Forever refuge of the sinner at the altar.
At the altar of His Dying,
He willed to us a Mother,
Pristine Whiteness.

Host upon the Altar

Pristine the whiteness
Engulfed in radiant flame,
Golden the rays,
Set about Your throne upon the altar.
For all the beauty of the monstrance,
You outshine the artist’s creation,
Just as You outshine Creation.

Give me eyes to see the Reality.
My eyes are designed to apprehend matter.
Here, You give us Mystery, Divinity.
I long to look upon Your fleshly Flesh,
To see Your locks curl mildly on Your shoulders,
To see the flash of smile and twinkle of the eye,
Majesty of manner, and goodly gentleness.

I gaze upon the Host,
All the while my heart and mind
Bring visions to the fore.
Power subdued in obedience,
Might bowed to the Father’s Will,
Abandonment, a fulfillment of prophetic word,
Suffering and salvific.

A Babe, a Boy, a Man,
Commending unto You
From womb to tomb,
In ignominy, yet dignity,
A Life and Death
Swallowing up Your wrath.

He bequeathed to us His Mother,
His ark and monstrance,
Forever refuge of the sinner at the altar.
At the altar of His Dying,
He willed to us a Mother,
Pristine Whiteness.

Live Henceforth in My Love

Blessing full and overflowing
Pour over me,
Around me,
And though and through.
It is You,
Who plans for me,
Accomplishes this work,
And I ,
For my part,
Desire,
And yield,
My whole life,
Loving You.

©2013 Joann Nelander

All rights reserved

Love’s Reach

I reach for You
With my life,
All my life.

It is not for naught,
That You labored,
Bore my sins.

I reach for You
With my thoughts.
In the night,
I contemplate Your Dying.

Writhing in agony,
Alone with hell’s phantoms,
Blood called
From Your flesh.
More than a drop
Spoke my name.

Here in the dark,
The echo resounds,
Scatters my foes.

I reach for You
With my heart,
All my heart.

The scourge,
The nails,
The Cross,
Crown Your life,
Given for my life.

You reach out,
Nailed to Your Cross,
Stretched across the ages.
I am but one
Who feels Your Pain.

Your Passion reaches me,
Saves my life,
All my life.

Copyright 2013 Joann Nelander

All rights reserved

The Breech

How great is the distance between us?

Some would say
The span from East to West,
Or measure in miles the chasm
Stretching from Heaven to Hell.
Others count the centuries
Since Your earthly Presence
In hallowed flesh.

There is no numbering
Eternity or Divinity.
You are closer than my breath.
Your Heart beats within my breast.
Day by day,
Nay, moment by moment,
I pick up Your rhythm.

Traversing the breech,
You make me Your own.
Small, but beloved,
I repose in willful abandonment.
Grace-filled faith,
A movement,
Not a measure,
Soars to the heavens,
In flights of trust in You.

Holy Desire – St. Augustine

“The entire life of a good Christian is in fact an exercise of holy desire. You do not yet see what you long for, but the very act of desiring prepares you, so that when he comes you may see and be utterly satisfied.”

“Suppose you are going to fill some holder or container, and you know you will be given a large amount. Then you set about stretching your sack or wineskin or whatever it is. Why? Because you know the quantity you will have to put in it and your eyes tell you there is not enough room. By stretching it, therefore, you increase the capacity of the sack, and this is how God deals with us. Simply by making us wait he increases our desire, which in turn enlarges the capacity of our soul, making it able to receive what is to be given to us.”

“The entire life of a good Christian is in fact an exercise of holy desire. You do not yet see what you long for, but the very act of desiring prepares you, so that when he comes you may see and be utterly satisfied.”

 

Live Henceforth in My Love

Blessing full and overflowing
Pour over me,
Around me,
And though and through.
It is You,
Who plans for me,
Accomplishes this work,
And I
For my part,
Desire,
And yield,
My whole life,
Loving You.

©2013 Joann Nelander  All rights reserved

Love’s Reach

I reach for You
With my life,
All my life.

It is not for naught,
That You labored,
Bore my sins.

I reach for You
With my thoughts.
In the night,
I contemplate Your Dying.

Writhing in agony,
Alone with hell’s phantoms,
Blood called
From Your flesh.
More than a drop
Spoke my name.

Here in the dark,
The echo resounds,
Scatters my foes.

I reach for You
With my heart,
All my heart.

The scourge,
The nails,
The Cross,
Crown Your life,
Given for my life.

You reach out,
Nailed to Your Cross,
Stretched across the ages.
I am but one
Who feels Your Pain.

Your Passion reaches me,
Saves my life,
All my life.

© 2013 Joann Nelander

All rights reserved

Held Fast to Your Glory

Thank You God,
For this waking in Your arms,
Held fast by You,
Through the night,
Through all darkness,
To see yet another day,
In Your light.
Purified by Your Holiness,
May I love,
And live it in Your Way.

©2013  Joann Nelander  All rights reserved

Good Friday of the Passion of Our Lord / DivineOffice.org

For an experience of the Liturgy of the Hours, the prayer of the Church, join in the praying of the hours for Good Friday at DivingOffice.org

Office of Readings for Friday of Holy Week

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Good Friday of the Passion of Our Lord
“It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, 45while the sun’s light failed; and the curtain of the temple was torn in two. 46Then Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, ‘Father, into thy hands I commit my spirit!’” (Lk 23:44-46).

As Jesus died on the cross, all laws failed. Roman laws had accused an innocent man, natural laws had ceased to exist, and the moral law inherent in man’s own heart had crucified our Savior. As the centurion stated in Luke 23:47, “Certainly this man was innocent!”

As we continue in our reflection through Holy Week, today we must come to accept that justice may not exist in our cause. Things may not seem fair. It’s as if we must hold our breath… progress suspended.

Today’s paradox is we know a Godly commitment leads to good. We recognize that God is present with us as we strive to do His will. We have hope that new life will come; but today, unfortunately, can feel like a place without justice. Today, only the law of love remains.

Hidden Grace of the Sacrament

Thomas A’ Kempis’words in My Imitation of Christ are ever new speaking to the heart. Preparations of a soul are often given little regard in the world, so let’s draw apart from the world to consider the gift, the soul and the benefits of our Faith received:

Here in the Sacrament of the altar You are wholly present, my God, the man Christ Jesus, whence is obtained the full realization of eternal salvation, as often as You are worthily and devoutly received. To this, indeed, we are not drawn by levity, or curiosity, or sensuality, but by firm faith, devout hope, and sincere love. O God, hidden Creator of the world, how wonderfully You deal with us! How sweetly and graciously You dispose of things with Your elect to whom You offer Yourself to be received in this Sacrament! This, indeed, surpasses all understanding. This in a special manner attracts the hearts of the devout and inflames their love. Your truly faithful servants, who give their whole life to amendment, often receive in Holy Communion the great grace of devotion and love of virtue. Oh, the wonderful and hidden grace of this Sacrament which only the faithful of Christ understand, which unbelievers and slaves of sin cannot experience! In it spiritual grace is conferred, lost virtue restored, and the beauty, marred by sin, repaired. At times, indeed, its grace is so great that, from the fullness of the devotion, not only the mind but also the frail body feels filled with greater strength. Nevertheless, our neglect and coldness is much to be deplored and pitied, when we are not moved to receive with greater fervor Christ in Whom is the hope and merit of all who will be saved. He is our sanctification and redemption. He is our consolation in this life and the eternal joy of the blessed in heaven. This being true, it is lamentable that many pay so little heed to the salutary Mystery which fills the heavens with joy and maintains the whole universe in being. Oh, the blindness and the hardness of the heart of man that does not show more regard for so wonderful a gift, but rather falls into carelessness from its daily use! If this most holy Sacrament were celebrated in only one place and consecrated by only one priest in the whole world, with what great desire, do you think, would men be attracted to that place, to that priest of God, in order to witness the celebration of the divine Mysteries! But now there are many priests and Mass is offered in many places, that God’s grace and love for men may appear the more clearly as the Sacred Communion is spread more widely through the world. Thanks be to You, Jesus, everlasting Good Shepherd, Who have seen fit to feed us poor exiled people with Your precious Body and Blood, and to invite us with words from Your own lips to partake of these sacred Mysteries: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will refresh you.” Book 4: chapter 1