Happy Feast of the Baptism of the Lord! 💦 Jesus was about thirty years old when he was baptized by St. John the Baptist, in the Jordan River, at the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry. The event is recorded is the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. We put away the Christmas decorations and took down the tree yesterday. ☹️ But the nativity sets stay out until Candlemas on February 2nd! Many Eastern European countries have polar bear swim-type traditions associated with Epiphany/the Baptism of the Lord. *I* am not going to be jumping in the pool today, but I’ll cheer the kids on if they want to. 🥶 5/9 of our kids’ sets of godparents and 4/8 of my godchildren AND all their families are coming over this evening for our favorite Baptism of the Lord tradition: a full-immersion fondue party! We’ll also enthusiastically renew our baptismal promises and get winged with holy water. #goodtimes #baptismofthelord #liturgicalliving #catholicallyear #catholicallyearcompendium
Happy Solemnity of the Epiphany! 🌟👑🐪🎁 Today we’ll celebrate with a king cake, and a family king and queen of Epiphany will get to boss us around all day, and we’ll do the Epiphany House Blessing when we get home from Mass, and for dinner, in honor of the three kings and their gifts, I’m serving various international parcel foods: empanadas, egg rolls, and pirogies 🥟. #epiphany #liturgicalliving #catholic #catholicallyear
St. John Neumann (pronounced “Noy-munn”), bishop, whose feast day is celebrated the very day after hers, continued the work of Catholic education begun by Mother Seton. He was born in 1811 in Bohemia. There was a priest surplus there, so in 1836, he emigrated to the United States, joined the Redemptorist order, was ordained, and eventually became the fourth bishop of Philadelphia. As bishop, he lived frugally, supported the poor, and worked to combat anti-Catholic and anti-immigrant sentiment. He established the first diocesan Catholic school system. He died in 1860, and is the only male United States citizen to have been canonized (so far). For dinner, we’re having philly cheesesteak sandwiches! #feastofstjohnneumann #liturgicalliving #catholicallyear
Happy Feast of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton! St. Elizabeth Ann Seton was born on the cusp of the American Revolution, on August 28, 1774, in New York City. She was raised Episcopalian, married a businessman at age nineteen, and with him had five children. After the death of her father-in-law, she and her husband also became guardians of his six younger siblings, aged seven to seventeen. At the age of twenty-nine, she became a widow—with eleven children—and started a boarding school for girls in order to support her family. About a year later, she, along with her children, converted to Catholicism. As a result, most of the parents of her pupils withdrew them from her school. She was about to give up on teaching altogether when she met a priest who was the president of St. Mary’s College. He had for some time been envisioning a system of specifically Catholic education in the United States, and encouraged Elizabeth to begin what became the first institution of the Catholic parochial school system in the United States She also established a religious community in Emmitsburg, Maryland, the first order of sisters to be founded in the United States. #feastofstelizabethannseton #catholicschools
Happy Feast of the Most Holy Name of Jesus! Something to consider doing today—and from now on!—is avoiding taking the Lord's name in vain in all forms. In our house we don't say or type (right now excluded) Oh God, O My God, Jesus etc., unless it's part of a prayer. We also avoid cutesy alternates like oh my gosh, or jeez, since, really, those are just substitutes and mean the same thing. We don't use OMG, even ironically. It took some getting used to, but it turns out there are plenty of other ways to express myself, and I don't even miss it. Once we had managed that, we began saying a quick, quiet prayer of reparation whenever we hear/see someone else taking the Lord's name in vain. I like, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do (Lk 23:34). That one's especially good, since they probably don't. Or the words of Job: “Blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21). And, today, for the feast, we'll recite the “Litany of the Holy Name.” It's long, but there's a partial indulgence in it for you! I’m serving alphabet soup for dinner. We’ll talk about how special each of our names is, and how we got them, and see what names we can find in our soup. Full disclosure: It definitely involves some fingers in soups. #feastoftheholyname #catholic #liturgicalliving #catholicallyear P.S. this image is part of my liturgical year wall calendar and phone wallpaper sets!
New post on the blog today! Featuring some ideas for how we incorporate prayer into our liturgical living (new year's resolution anyone?), an indulged prayer for the day, and some FREE downloads, as my new year's gift to you! Thank you so much to all of you who've purchased the January and/or Epiphany prayer booklets. The proceeds from those sales fund the liturgical living video series, which we are hoping to be able to afford to continue! #catholicallyear
Happy New Year! The Veni Creator Spiritus is traditionally prayed at the beginning of things. There is a plenary indulgence available, pursuant to the usual conditions, for its recitation on January 1st (and on Pentecost, the anniversary of the beginning of the Church). Veni Creator Spiritus Come, Holy Spirit, Creator blest, and in our souls take up Thy rest; come with Thy grace and heavenly aid to fill the hearts which Thou hast made. O comforter, to Thee we cry, O heavenly gift of God Most High, O fount of life and fire of love, and sweet anointing from above. Thou in Thy sevenfold gifts are known; Thou, finger of God's hand we own; Thou, promise of the Father, Thou Who dost the tongue with power imbue. Kindle our sense from above, and make our hearts o'erflow with love; with patience firm and virtue high the weakness of our flesh supply. Far from us drive the foe we dread, and grant us Thy peace instead; so shall we not, with Thee for guide, turn from the path of life aside. Oh, may Thy grace on us bestow the Father and the Son to know; and Thee, through endless times confessed, of both the eternal Spirit blest. Now to the Father and the Son, Who rose from death, be glory given, with Thou, O Holy Comforter, henceforth by all in earth and heaven. Amen. Public recitation means in a church, family, religious community, or group of friends. This prayer, and prayers for the whole month of January are available in this month’s booklet on Amazon or on the blog. #happynewyear #catholicallyear #liturgicalliving #liturgicalpraying
New blog post! Featuring today’s indulgence and an all new episode of the Catholic All Year Liturgical Living Video Series, all about the Epiphany House Blessing! It’s so easy and lovely to do. And I’m publishing this in time for you to order chalk from Amazon. 😁 The mini version of the video is over on @kendra_tierney #epiphany #liturgicalliving #epiphanyhouseblessing #catholicallyear
The Te Deum, historically attributed to St. Ambrose, is recited in thanksgiving at the end of things. On the last day of the year, there is a plenary indulgence available for its public recitation! Te Deum You are God, we praise you: You are the Lord: we acclaim you; You are the eternal Father: All creation worships you. To you all angels, all the powers of heaven, Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise: Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of power and might, Heaven and earth are full of your glory. The glorious company of apostles praise you. The noble fellowship of prophets praise you. The white-robed army of martyrs praise you. Throughout the world, the holy Church acclaims you: Father of majesty unbounded, Your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, And the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide. You, Christ, are the King of Glory The eternal Son of the Father. When you became man to set us free, You did not spurn the Virgin’s womb. You overcame the sting of death, And opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers. You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. We believe that you will come and be our judge. Come then, Lord, and help your people, Bought with the price of your own blood, And bring us with your saints to glory everlasting. V: Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance. R: Govern and uphold them now and always V: Day by day we bless you. R: We praise your name forever. V: Keep us today, Lord, from all sin. R: Have mercy on us, Lord have Mercy V: Lord, show us your Love and Mercy R: for we put our trust in you. V: In you, Lord, is our hope: R: and we shall never hope in vain. Amen. Public recitation means in a church, family, religious community, or group of friends. This prayer, and prayers for the whole month of January are available in this month’s booklet on Amazon or on the blog. #happynewyear #catholicallyear #liturgicalliving #liturgicalpraying
Happy Feast of the Holy Family! It’s an excellent day to plan a whole family activity. We’re going to attempt a board game this afternoon (Gus got a new Catan extension for Christmas) AND a family Christmas movie tonight. So far this year we’ve seen White Christmas, Home Alone (with a little fast forwarding), Rudolph, Veggie Tales Christmas, and the Princess Switch (last night when the boys were at a basketball game 😆😆). So, any Christmas movie recommendations for us for tonight? #feastoftheholyfamily #catholicallyear p.s. new post on the blog with our Christmas card and letter, and I’ve got a new printable booklet up with all the prayers, blessings, and Bible readings we use in January. It starts with indulged prayers for New Years Eve! p.p.s this image is part of the Catholic All Year liturgical wall calendar and the phone wallpapers collection, both available at the blog/shop! Christmas movie recommendations 🎄🎅🎥 go!
Happy 4th day of Christmas and happy Feast of the Holy Innocents, a terrible event that Catholics can celebrate as a happy day, because we take a long view of things! We are sad for the cruelty and cowardice of King Herod. We are sad for the suffering of the families of those babies. But we rejoice for the Holy Innocents themselves, who were among the very first to enter heaven. We are happy to see that the wicked Herod was tricked, first by the Wise Men, and then by the babies themselves. Herod, who meant to do Jesus harm and meant to do these children harm, instead gave crowns to the babies and saints to the Church. There are some who, in our day, use this feast day to draw attention to and pray for an end to the scourge of legal abortion all over the world. I can certainly see why, as those babies are innocent victims, as were the Holy Innocents. However, I think that to do so takes away our focus from the most beautiful and meaningful part of the story of these children, which is that they were mistaken for Jesus, and killed in his place. That is truly the glory of their story. We should all strive to live in such a way that we, too, might be mistaken for Christ. In the United States, we have a different day particularly set aside by our bishops to pray for an end to abortion: January 22. Today is historically a day to celebrate children! Despite its heavy subject matter, because of the way King Herod was tricked, and because of the happy ending in which we trust for these children, the Feast of the Holy Innocents, also known as Childermass, has traditionally been celebrated by Catholics with great silliness and frivolity. Today, we will bless our children, and for dinner we’ll have shrimp and grits “baby food” 😏😁 (But without the sausage and bacon, because, alas, today is not a solemnity, and usual Friday penance applies.) #feastoftheholyinnocents #liturgicalliving #catholicallyearcompendium
John is the author of the gospel of St. John, plus the three Epistles of St. John (probably), and the Book of Revelation. He doesn’t mention himself by name in his gospel, instead calling himself “the Beloved Disciple” or “the disciple whom Jesus loved.” He was the youngest of the apostles, and he lived to be the oldest, surviving his brother James by more than fifty years. He was almost a hundred years old when he died. By tradition, he is the only one of the twelve apostles to die of natural causes. But that’s through no fault of his own. He survived being boiled in oil by the Roman emperor Domitian, and drinking a cup of poisoned wine given to him by the same. His reward for having the gall to survive such attacks was to be exiled to the island of Patmos until the emperor’s death. He spent many decades sharing the gospel and the love of Christ. St. Jerome tells us that when St. John was a very old man, and could no longer walk or speak in public, he would ask to be carried to visit the faithful, saying to them only, “My dear children, love one another.” St. John is often pictured holding a cup with a snake or cute little dragon curled around the edge, to symbolize the poisoned wine that didn’t kill him. Tonight at dinner, we will say the blessing for wine, and drink a toast together to the love of St. John. Even the little kids! The head of the household begins, holding the glass of wine and saying, “I drink to you the love of St. John, and then drinks. The next person answers, I thank you for the love of St. John, and takes the glass and takes a drink. Then that person turns to the person to the right and continues, all the way around the table. Cheers! 😇🍷🐍❤️ #feastofstjohn #thirddayofchristmas #idrinktoyoutheloveofstjohn #liturgicalliving #catholicallyearcompendium
On the day after Christmas, we celebrate St. Stephen, the first martyr. He was a deacon in the early church, who became the first Christian to be put to death because of his faith, three years after Jesus was crucified. After being accused of blasphemy, St. Stephen makes the longest speech recorded in the Bible, in which he recounts the history of the Jewish patriarchs from Abraham to Moses, lobs some well-timed insults at his accusers, and then gets stoned to death. The whole episode was observed by Saul of Tarsus, a Pharisee who later had a rather spectacular conversion to Christianity and is known to us now as St. Paul. The story can be found in the Acts of the Apostles 6-8. #feastofststephen #seconddayofchristmas
Merry Christmas to one and all!
Merry Christmas Eve and Happy Feast of Ss. Adam and Eve! That’s right! We all know that Adam and Eve were the first sinners. But did you know that they were also the first saints? It is the long tradition of the Churches of both the East and the West that Adam and Eve repented of their sin, worshipped God along with their children (Gen 4:26), were sanctified through hard work and suffering, which God had given to them as both a punishment and an opportunity (Gen 3:16-19), died, and entered into the limbo of the fathers. From there, along with all the holy men and women who died before Jesus, they were delivered by Jesus on Holy Saturday, and now reside in heaven with him. 😁😇🌳🍎🐍 To celebrate, lunch is apples and cheese, and a reading of Genesis 2:4-3:24. We’ll spend the rest of the day finishing projects and wrapping presents, tidying and decorating, putting up the tree, and observing the recommended Day of fasting and abstinence for the Vigil of Christmas. The waiting is almost over! #feastofssadamandeve #liturgicalliving #christmaseve #catholicallyearcompendium
I have to admit, it was a big surprise when I discovered this a few years ago. But I decided to lean into it and create our own family traditions. We have baked mac and cheese for Halloween and for Christmas Eve, I make Mexican ensalada de noche buena and my grandfather’s German potato and dumpling soup. Meat free, but so tasty that guests don’t even notice we’re abstaining! 😆 #liturgicalliving #thefastbeforethefeast #catholicallyearcompendium #christmaseve
Liturgical living alert! 🚨 The winter ember days are this week: Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. The Ember Days are four sets of three days of penance, one set at the beginning of each season. Wednesday is memory of Judas’ betrayal. Friday is in memory of the crucifixion. Saturday is in memory of the tomb. The winter Ember Days follow St. Lucy’s Day (December 13th) and are offered in thanksgiving for the olive harvest, which gives us holy oils. The penance is traditionally fasting on Wednesday and Saturday, and fasting and abstinence from meat on Friday. Current fasting norms in the U.S. permit one full meal, as well as two smaller meals that together are not equal to a full meal. Abstinence is binding from age fourteen. Fasting is binding from age eighteen to fifty-nine (except for those exempt for reasons of age or health). Until 1966, the Ember Days were a required observation for all Catholics (except for those exempt for reasons of age or health). Since 1966, observation is left up to the discretion of the local bishops. In the U.S., observation of the Ember Days is recommended, but not mandatory. I’m planning to observe the fasting norms for the day, but my “regular meal” is going to include birthday cake, because it’s the husband’s birthday! 😁 #liturgicalliving #catholicallyearcompendium #emberdays
Happy HAPPY Gaudete Sunday! I love the words of the opening prayer of the Christmas Novena every day, but especially today. “Blow ye the trumpet in Sion, for the day of the Lord is nigh: Behold, he will come to save us, alleluia, alleluia.” Today is one of only two days during the year when a priest may wear rose colored vestments, to remind us that Advent is more than halfway over, and Our Lord is coming! Vatican tradition is to bring your Baby Jesus with you to Mass for a blessing! Today, we’ll wear pink too, and eat pink food, and because it’s also December 16th, we’ll begin the Christmas Novena! It’s not too late to join us! Grab a printable booklet on my blog, or find the prayers for free online at CatholicCulture.org. #gaudetesunday #liturgicalliving #catholic #catholicallyearcompendium
The O Antiphons are a part of my single favorite liturgical living practice of the whole year: our Christmas Novena. And it begins tomorrow! It requires no crafting! And you do it starting tomorrow, for only nine days, in 15-20 minutes. So if your best laid Jesse Tree plans aren't working out (mine didn't), check out this Novena. You actually might be surprised to see what a historic Catholic Jesse Tree looks like! Check out the blog for a new post with all the details. Link in profile and all that. #oantiphons #christmasnovena #catholicallyear #catholicallyearcompendium #liturgicalliving
Happy Feast of St. John of the Cross! Along with his friend and fellow mystic, St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross founded an order of priests, nuns, and religious, called the Discalced (meaning barefoot) Carmelites. Before starting a new order, they had tried to reform the existing Carmelite order, whose rules and standards had become more relaxed over the previous couple hundred years—what with wearing shoes and all. His attempts at reform, though approved by his superiors, were met with great resistance. Eventually, he was captured by a group of Carmelites opposed to his reforms and imprisoned in a six foot by ten foot cell, with no lamp and no bed and no change of clothes, and was fed a meager diet of bread, water, and scraps of salt fish. He was kept there for nine months, until he managed to pry the cell door off of its hinges and escape through a window in an adjoining room! We’ll celebrate St. John of the Cross today by venerating the Cross (going down on one knee and kissing it) and having Castilian Sopa de Ajo (a tomato and garlic soup) and salty sardines on crackers (perfect for Friday!) and peanut butter kiss (the Cross) cookies. #feastofstjohnofthecross #liturgicalliving #catholicallyear #catholicallyearcompendium