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Photo: Feast of the Immaculate Conception, Dec 8 2011, St. Stephen Church



Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Lenten Embertide

Many may know of the existence of Ember Days, but how many know the history and meaning of them?

Wednesday, Friday and Saturday this week are known as Lenten Embertide. The Ember Days occur four times per year, in conjunction with the four seasons. Traditionally speaking, they are days of fasting and abstinence.

A post on Rorate Caeli from way back in 2008 gives a good account of the Ember Days' history, meaning and significance, particularly how today's culture, so zealous for being good stewards of the earth, is missing the element of the Supernatural Mysteries, which Ember Days embodies in the very nature of its liturgical meaning.

Help resurrect the pious observation of Ember Days, a tradition which goes back to the earliest times of the Church.

Fisheaters also has a good summary of Ember Days.

Finally, as Ember Saturday was used as a day for conferring Holy Orders, perhaps we should use this time to pray for priests, in the words of St. Therese:

 
"O Holy Father, may the torrents of love flowing from the sacred wounds of Thy Divine Son bring forth priests like unto the beloved disciple John who stood at the foot of the Cross; priests: who as a pledge of Thine own most tender love will lovingly give Thy Divine Son to the souls of men.

May Thy priests be faithful guardians of Thy Church, as John was of Mary, whom he received into his house. Taught by this loving Mother who suffered so much on Calvary, may they display a mother’s care and thoughtfulness towards Thy children. May they teach souls to enter into close union with Thee through Mary who, as the Gate of Heaven, is specially the guardian of the treasures of Thy Divine Heart.

Give us priests who are on fire, and who are true children of Mary, priests who will give Jesus to souls with the same tenderness and care with which Mary carried the Little Child of Bethlehem.

Mother of sorrows and of love, out of compassion for Thy beloved Son, open in our hearts deep wells of love, so that we may console Him and give Him a generation of priests formed in thy school and having all the tender thoughtfulness of thine own spotless love. Amen."

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