Traditionally, Advent wreaths are constructed of a circle of evergreen branches into which four candles are inserted, representing the four weeks of Advent. Ideally, three candles are purple and one is rose, but white candles can also be used.
The purple candles in particular symbolize the prayer, penance, and preparatory sacrifices and goods works undertaken at this time. The rose candle is lit on the third Sunday, Gaudete Sunday, when the priest also wears rose vestments at Mass; Gaudete Sunday is the Sunday of rejoicing, because the faithful have arrived at the midpoint of Advent, when their preparation is now half over and they are close to Christmas.
The progressive lighting of the candles symbolizes the expectation and hope surrounding our Lord’s first coming into the world and the anticipation of his second coming to judge the living and the dead.
The use of the Advent Wreath is a traditional practice which has found its place in the Church as well as in the home. The blessing of an Advent Wreath takes place on the First Sunday of Advent or on the evening before the First Sunday of Advent.
When the blessing of the Advent Wreath is celebrated in the home, it is appropriate that it be blessed by a parent or another member of the family.
The use of the Christmas tree is relatively modern. Its origins are found in the medieval mystery plays that depicted the tree of paradise and the Christmas light or candle that symbolized Christ, the Light of the world. According to custom, the Christmas tree is set up just before Christmas and may remain in place until the Solemnity of Epiphany. The lights of the tree are illuminated after the prayer of blessing.
In the home the Christmas tree may be blessed by a parent or another family member, in connection with the evening meal on the Vigil of Christmas or at another suitable time on Christmas Day.
Follow this link www.usccb.org/prayer-and-worship/liturgical-year/advent/upload/advent-calendar-2017-family-bilingual.pdf to the Advent Family Calendar published by the USCCB.
"Various forms of prayer are presented in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 2623-2649). These various forms include prayer of blessing or adoration, prayer of petition, prayer of intercession, prayer of thanksgiving, and prayer of praise.
"Meditation is above all a quest."
Meditation is a Christian practice of prayer dating back to the early Church. As the Catechism states: "Meditation is above all a quest. The mind seeks to understand the why and how of the Christian life, in order to adhere and respond to what the Lord is asking." By meditating on the Gospels, holy icons, liturgical texts, spiritual writings, or "the great book of creation," we come to make our own that which is God's. "To the extent that we are humble and faithful, we discover in meditation the movements that stir the heart and we are able to discern them. It is a question of acting truthfully in order to come into the light: "Lord, what do you want me to do?" (CCC 2705-2706).
Meditation is an essential form of Christian prayer, especially for those who are seeking to answer the vocational question, "Lord, what do you want me to do?"
Spiritual reading of Sacred Scripture, especially the Gospels, is an important form of meditation. This spiritual reading is traditionally called lectio divina or divine reading. Lectio divina is prayer over the Scriptures.
Popular devotions are expressions of love and fidelity that arise from the intersection of one's own faith, culture and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As Saint John Paul II said in 2001:
Devotions promote the faith of the people.
"Genuine forms of popular piety, expressed in a multitude of different ways, derives from the faith and, therefore, must be valued and promoted. Such authentic expressions of popular piety are not at odds with the centrality of the Sacred Liturgy. Rather, in promoting the faith of the people, who regard popular piety as a natural religious expression, they predispose the people for the celebration of the Sacred Mysteries.
The correct relationship between these two expressions of faith must be based on certain firm principles, the first of which recognizes that the Liturgy is the center of the Church's life and cannot be substituted by, or placed on a par with, any other form of religious expression. Moreover, it is important to reaffirm that popular religiosity, even if not always evident, naturally culminates in the celebration of the Liturgy towards which it should ideally be oriented. This should be made clear through suitable catechesis" (Address to the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, September 21, 2001).
Join with the Church as she expresses her praise and devotion to God through many popular devotional practices."
We invite you to consider our new electronic giving program as a way to automate your regular weekly offerings.
Electronic giving is convenient for you and provides much-needed consistency for our church. There is no cost for you to participate.
As an example, if you are currently giving on a weekly basis, you will no longer need to write out 52 checks a year, instead you can set up online donations and simply drop your empty envelope into the basket each week as an attendance record. And when illness, or other circumstances prevent you from attending mass, this program will allow your weekly offerings to continue on an uninterrupted basis.
To find out more about our exciting new service, click here.
"Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord!"
"To listen to the Word is to have a personal encounter with God. Psalm 119 guides us towards the Gospel and fulfillment of the law of Jesus Christ. The Lord and His Word are our 'land' in which we live in communion and joy.
Each year during Our Catholic Appeal, you affirm the Lord and His Word by your generous response in supporting the ministries of the Diocese of Orlando. You open your hearts to the gift of these ministries because they help each one of you to live more fully in God's Law and to prosper our land with His majestic love. From honoring the divinity of each life, to teaching people of all ages about our faith, to sharing our resources with those who are alone or in need, to holding our parishes accountable for your stewardship in the Lord's name, these ministries bring forth God's law in our land."
Click here to read more...
We nurture the spiritual lives of our family of believers by leading and inspiring each other to be true Christian disciples.
To deepen and enhance the spiritual life of the parish through liturgy, personal prayer, and devotions.
To provide religious education and spiritual formation.
To minister to those within the parish family and community.
To reach out to returning Catholics and unchurched persons.
To deepen our commitment to stewardship of prayer, time and talent, and treasure.
To celebrate our diversity and our commonality.
Sts. Peter & Paul Parish was established on July 27, 1967. We celebrated our first Mass on August 13, 1967, on the grounds of Camp San Pedro. During the following two years, Pastor Michael Troy and 200 families were a community on the road, celebrating Mass in San Pedro Center, New Hope Baptist Church and Aloma Elementary School. On November 1, 1969, we celebrated the first Mass in the domed recreational building. It served not only as our church, but also the rectory, church offices, ministry meeting room and community auditorium.