RSVP for Wednesday School: 12 December 2018

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NB: This will be the last Wednesday School of the semester - we will resume on 16 January 2019!

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Letter from Fr. Allen - December 7, 2018



Dear Friends,

[Here] you will see a short video about the music of Advent featuring Dr. Sara Pecknold, a professor of sacred music at the Catholic University of America. I encourage you to watch. Advent features some of the Church's most beautiful and poignant music, songs filled with longing and expectation. This Sunday we will sing one of my own favorite Advent hymns: Conditor alme siderum. It is a Latin hymn dating back to the 7th century, and in the Breviary it is assigned to be sung at Vespers during Advent. We know it in its English translation by great Oxford Movement hymn writer John Mason Neal, "Creator of the stars of night." This ancient hymn enfolds within itself all of salvation history, from our Lord's first coming in great humility - 

Thou cam’st, the Bridegroom of the bride,

As drew the world to evening-tide;
Proceeding from a virgin shrine,
The spotless victim all divine.


To that great day when he shall come again in his glorious majesty - 

O Thou whose coming is with dread
 To judge and doom the quick and dead,
 Preserve us, while we dwell below,
 From every insult of the foe.


Advent calls us to keep both these comings of the Lord in our minds and in our hearts, so that we may, redeemed and renewed by his first coming, then "without shame or fear rejoice to behold his appearing" (as we pray in the Advent preface) at his second.

Saturday, of course, we take a step out of Advent to celebrate the beautiful Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. This will be a special day in the life our community as we receive a new family, the Carlsons, into the full communion the Catholic Church. This Mass will also inaugurate a new ministry for girls, the Guild of St. Margaret Clitherow. This will be an opportunity for the girls to meet and grow together in their faith and love for the Lord, but the most visible manifestation of this ministry will be the girls' participation in leading Marian devotions at Mass on appropriate feast days. The collect for St Margaret Clitherow asks God to "raise up in our day women of courage and resource to care for thy household the Church," and that exactly is our hope for what God will accomplish in and through the members of this new guild. 

God bless you,
Fr Allen

Bambinelli Sunday

Each year on the 3rd Sunday of Advent, Gaudete Sunday, children in Rome gather with their families in St. Peter’s Square for Benedizione dei Bambinelli, bringing with them the Christ Child figurine from their family’s home crèche. At the noon Angelus, the Pope blesses the children, their families, and the figurines they have brought. A week from Sunday we will unite our hearts to the Holy Father’s and the children and families gathered with him and bless our own Bambinelli. Bring your Christ Child figurine to be blessed during Mass a week from Sunday, on 16 December. 

Lighting of Advent Wreath Candles: The Second Sunday of Advent


Lighting of Advent Wreath Candles: The Second Sunday of Advent

Click here to print (pdf).

All make the Sign of the Cross as the leader begins: 

℣ +Our help is in the name of the Lord.

℟ Who hath made heaven and earth.


The following Scripture is read: Isaiah 11.1-10

THERE shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide by what his ears hear; but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall slay the wicked. Righteousness shall be the girdle of his waist, and faithfulness the girdle of his loins. The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid, and the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall feed; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The sucking child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den. They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.

Light the first and second purple candles in order. With hands joined, the leader prays:

STIR up our hearts, O Lord, to prepare the ways of thine Only-Begotten Son: that through his advent we may be worthy to serve thee with purified minds; through the same Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. ℟ Amen.

The devotion may conclude with a verse from "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel": 

O come, thou Branch of Jesse’s tree, free them from Satan’s tyranny
that trust thy mighty power to save, and give them victory o’er the grave.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel 
shall come to thee, O Israel.


Immaculate Conception and Advent II in 2018

In 2018, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception falls on a Saturday. This is a holy day of obligation for the Ordinariate communities in the United States.  Since it is the patronal feast of the United States, is not abrogated when it falls on a Saturday.  Catholics have two obligations to fulfill on this weekend -- the holy day and Sunday. Using the chart below, one blue obligation and one violet obligation must each be fulfilled separately. Both obligations can be fulfilled on Saturday, just not both at the same Mass, and only in the times indicated.
The Saturday evening celebration should be the Mass of the Second Sunday of Advent, according to the Table of Precedence.  For the Saturday evening Mass, either obligation can be fulfilled, regardless of the liturgical celebration.

Holy Mass for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception will be offered at St. Mary's at the following times:

  • 6.00PM Friday, 7 December (Roman Missal)

  • 9.00AM Saturday, 8 December (Divine Worship), with the Rite of Reception into Full Communion of the Carlson Family, the Sacrament of Confirmation, and First Communions. Girls are invited to wear white dresses and bring flowers for Mary to this Mass. See this post for more information.

Letter from Fr. Allen - November 29, 2018



Dear Friends,

This Sunday, difficult as it is to believe, is the first Sunday of Advent, and the wheel of our annual cycle of devotion will turn one more time, and the rush of Christmas preparations, secular and sacred and those two jumbled together, is suddenly upon us.

"Time flies!", we shout. "Where does the time go?", we ask. That sensation we all share of time rushing past - or even, perhaps when we were children longing for Christmas morning, of time so-slowly creeping past - is a sign to us, even a timely Advent-ish reminder, that though we dwell in time, we are never quite at home in time. (Here, by the way, is my favorite attempt to declare peace with time's passing, which turns, inevitably, melancholic: Sandy Denny's beautiful song with Fairport Convention, "Who Knows Where the Time Goes?" - I also like Matthew Sweet & Susanna Hoffs brilliant cover.)

That sense of dislocation is an especially appropriate and helpful in Advent. Jesus is coming; history is either rushing or crawling toward its end, depending upon your perspective. As we will pray in Sunday's collect:  as once he "came to visit us in great humility... he shall come again in his glorious majesty, to judge both the quick and the dead." Our unease with time reminds us that we share with aged Simeon his longing and expectation for Israel's consolation, that this world as it is is not as it ought to be, not what God will one great day remake it to be, when his kingdom is fully come: "a kingdom of truth and life; a kingdom of grace and holiness; a kingdom of peace, of love, and righteousness," as we prayed at last Sunday's Mass of Christ the King. C.S. Lewis wrote of our odd and unsettled to time's passing this way:

Do fish complain of the sea for being wet? Or if they did, would that fact itself not strongly suggest that they had not always been, or would not always be, purely aquatic creatures? Then, if we complain of time and take such joy in the seemingly timeless moment, what does that suggest? It suggests that we have not always been or will not always be purely temporal creatures. It suggests that we were created for eternity. Not only are we harried by time, we seem unable, despite a thousand generations, even to get used to it. We are always amazed by it--how fast it goes, how slowly it goes, how much of it is gone. Where, we cry, has the time gone? We aren't adapted to it, not at home in it. If that is so, it may appear as a proof, or at least a powerful suggestion, that eternity exists and is our home.

Time flies, time creeps, but Advent is a privileged time for turning again to the Lord, who is our consolation and our hope, who says, “Surely I am coming soon." To which our patient and expectant keeping of Advent embodies our reply: "Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!"

God bless you and grant you a watchful Advent,
Fr Allen

Now Accepting Orders for the People’s Edition of the Ordinariate Missal

We are now accepting orders for copies of Divine Worship Sunday Missal (People’s Edition). Order here. $40.00 (USD)

Corpus Christi is placing a bulk order for fifty copies of the Divine Worship Sunday Missal (People’s Edition), which allows for substantial savings on shipping (otherwise approximately $13.00) from England. Once delivered, your missal(s) will be available for pick-up before or after Sunday Mass or at Wednesday School. Publication date is 14 December 2018.

We are taking orders for a limited time only - reserve your copy! Orders are accepted through 4 December.

From the publisher:

Catholic Truth Society presents the first people's Sunday Missal combining the Revised Standard Version (2nd Catholic Edition) lectionary approved for use in the Personal Ordinariates established under the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus and the texts of the Mass from the Divine Worship Missal. 

This Missal beautifully presents all the essentials needed by the laity in the Mass: the Order of Mass alongside propers for Sundays and Holy Days (Year A, B, & C) including Advent and Christmas, Lent, Holy Week and Easter, ember and rogation days. Music is included for the people's responses and a table of Correspondence of Named Sundays to Ordinary Time for every year until 2050. 

Durably and attractively bound with three placeholder ribbons, the Divine Worship People's Missal features clear layouts, beautiful artwork and easy to read fonts. 

Marian Feast Days at Corpus Christi


At Mass for the Immaculate Conception on Saturday, 8 December, the girls of the parish are invited to process in with flowers for Mary.  Girls should wear white dresses and bring flowers.  They will gather in the back of the church before Mass to take part in the Procession and also in the Angelus at the end of Mass.  If anyone is able to sew simple light blue sashes for the girls to wear to honor Mary on this and other Marian feast days, we are looking for a volunteer!  Contact Erin (email) to participate or volunteer.

Advent Wreath Blessing & Lighting of First Candle


Blessing of an Advent Wreath at Home & Lighting of the First Candle

The First Sunday of Advent is December 2nd.

Click here to print (pdf). 

All make the Sign of the Cross as the leader begins: 

℣ +Our help is in the name of the Lord.

℟ Who hath made heaven and earth. 

 Let us pray.

O God, by whose word all things are sanctified, pour forth Thy blessing upon this wreath, and grant that we who use it may prepare our hearts for the coming of Christ and may receive from Thee abundant graces. Through Christ our Lord. ℟ Amen.

The following Scriptures are read:

Ps 50.2-5

Out of Sion hath God appeared * in perfect beauty.

Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence; * there shall go before him a consuming fire, and a mighty tempest shall be stirred up round about him.

He shall call the heaven from above, * and the earth, that he may judge his people.

Gather my saints together unto me; * those that have made a covenant with me with sacrifice.


John 1.1-5

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.


Light one purple candle. With hands joined, the leader prays:

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty, to judge both the quick and the dead; we may rise to the life immortal; through the same Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. ℟ Amen.

The devotion may conclude with a verse from "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel": 

O come, desire of nations, bind
in one the hearts of humankind;
bid ev'ry sad division cease
and be thyself our Prince of peace.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel 
shall come to thee, O Israel.

Click here to print (pdf).

Advent Ember Days 2018

Ember Days.png

Advent Ember Days in 2018
Wednesday, 5 December
Friday, 7 December

Ember Days are brief periods of prayer and abstinence during each of the four seasons of the year. Ember Friday in Advent is to be kept as an obligatory day of abstinence from meat by members of the Ordinariate. Saturday, 8 December is not an Ember Day this year because of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary. Learn all about the Advent Ember Days.

Letter from Fr. Allen - November 22, 2018



Dear Friends,

Happy Thanksgiving! By the time this newsletter sloshes into your inbox, I hope you are viewing the world reading this through a tryptophan-induced somnolent haze! Today we give thanks especially for the bounty of this beautiful land and fruitful land. And as we give thanks, let us pray also for those who do not share in its bounty, and then let us resolve and act so that they may. I encourage you to think now of the concrete ways you may help the poor during this holiday season, remembering always that we are the unworthy recipients God's grace to us in Jesus Christ. And so, as we (sometimes!) hear prior to the Offertory at Mass: I beseech you brethren, by the mercies of God, to present yourselves as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. And to  remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'

Speaking of giving, next Sunday is the Ordinariate's annual second collection for the Retirement Fund for Priests. Please keep me and my confreres in bait and tackle in our senescent decrepitude! More information is below, and you may give electronically here.

Below you will also again see information for the purchase of the "People's Edition" of our Missal. This is a book you will use! It includes the order of Mass and all of the readings and prayers for every Sunday and solemnity of the year. See below to reserve your copy today.

God bless you,
Fr Allen

Letter from Fr. Allen - November 15, 2018



Dear Friends,

I'm very pleased to tell you that the Catholic Truth Society, the publishing house that produced our Divine Worship Missal and Book of Occasional Services - our official liturgical books - will next month publish The Divine Worship Sunday Missal (People's Edition). This book is meant, as the subtitle indicates, to aid the prayer and devotion and foster the "active participation" of the people attending Mass. It will include all of the prayers and biblical readings (in our translation) for every Sunday and Solemnity of the year, as well as all parts of the Mass in our Ordinariate form. These books are beautifully and solidly produced, and so not inexpensive. But to encourage purchase and use of this book by our people, Corpus Christi will place a bulk order, which will allow a substantial savings (approximately $13.00 for an individual copy) on shipping. The cost is $40.00, and we will be taking orders for only a limited time - until December 4th. Just in time for Christmas! To reserve your copy, click here! You'll see more information at the link.

I should also say that we hope soon to see the publication of another book for the Ordinariate - the St Gregory Prayer Book. This is will be more of a personal manual of devotion, including the order of Mass (but not the proper prayers and lessons), and various prayers and devotions such as Stations of the Cross, Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, forms for daily prayer, Marian devotions, and so on. We also still await the Holy See's approval of our Daily Office (you might pray for that happy day!).

God bless you,
Fr Allen

Video: interview of three Ordinaries

In this 49-minute video from EWTN Great Britain, James McCullough speaks to Bishop Steven Joseph Lopes, Msgr Keith Newton, and Msgr Harry Entwistle in Walsingham, England, the three ordinaries of the three Ordinariates.

James McCullough speaks to Bishop Steven Joseph Lopes, Mgr Keith Newton and Mgr Harry Entwistle in Walsingham, England. Pope Benedict XVI established The Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham in 2011 to allow Anglicans to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church whilst retaining much of their heritage and traditions.