Renewing our novitiate space

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With new monastic candidates on the way to live with us, our abbot and novice master decided to renew the look of our novitiate rooms. We tore out the old multi-colored carpet squares that trapped dust and allergens and laid a laminate vinyl flooring that looks like wood. You can get a sense of what the floor is like — and the work ahead to return furniture to comfortable places.

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Mary, Mother of God

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Our Father Tom Francis, who recently celebrated his 92nd birthday, was invited by our abbot to give the homily today on this Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God.

Fr. Tom taught church history for many years, including a number of years in East Africa.

You can hear his homily here

the last hour

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In our reading from the first letter of St John, he declares that “it is the last hour.” And, indeed, another year draws to a close.

And another dawns – which leads us to respond:

Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!

Sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all you lands.
Sing to the LORD; bless his name;
announce his salvation, day after day.

May God give you many blessings and joys in the new year!

O virgo virginum

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O uirgo uirginum, quomodo fiet quia nec primam simile, uisa es nec habere sequentem, filie ierlm quid me admiramini diuinum est misterium hoc quod operata est in me.

O Virgo Virginum, all peerless in virtue,
Women of Jerusalem muse on this matter:
How thou, a maiden, art the mother of Jesu.
Nonetheless, if any of them this secretly enquire,
Sweet lady, then shortly make to them this answer:
‘The high might of God this mystery first began.
Ye damsels of Jerusalem, why wonder ye so then?

O Emmanuel

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O Emmanuel rex & legifer noster, expectacio gencium & saluator earum, veni ad saluandum nos domine deus noster.

O Emmanuel, our sovereign lord and king,
In whom we Christian men trust above all,
Give to thy subjects grace, with good lykyng [desire, delight]
Well to perform thy precepts legal,
And save us, thy servants, from mischief all.
Thus we pray, our gracious Saviour,
Our Lord, our God, our loving Redeemer.