LECTIO DIVINA 4th Sunday of Advent C

Translated by Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

Lk. 1:39-4

A. Invoking the Holy Spirit

We invoke the Holy Spirit using the words of St. Augustine.

         Come, Holy Spirit, by whom every devout soul, who believe in Christ, is sanctified to become a citizen of the City of God! (en. Ps 45:8) Come, HolySpirit, grant that we receive the motions of God, put in us your flame, enlighten us and raise us up to God (s.128,4).

B. Lectio

With the heart well disposed, with serenity, read slowly the following words, savoring them and allowing yourself to be impressed by them.

         Mary set out and traveled to the hill country in haste to a town ofJudah, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. WhenElizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And how does this happen to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.”

C. Meditatio

Let us now meditate with the commentary of St. Augustine on these words of the Gospel according to St. Luke.

         The words of Elizabeth, the mother of John, are undoubtedly these: Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And how does this happen to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy. TheEvangelist observes that in order to say that she was filled with the HolySpirit. Without doubt she knew by revelation what the child’s leaping for joy meant, that is: that the mother of the one, whose precursor and herald he would be, had come. It was, therefore, possible that the meaning of such a new miracle be known by the elders, though the baby would not know it. As theEvangelist narrates it, he does not say “she believed”, but “the child leaped in my womb.” Neither did Elizabeth say: “the child in my womb leaped in faith,” but “He leaped for joy”. This leaping was unusual and new, because it happened in the womb and at the arrival of the one who was to give birth to the Saviour of men. That is why it was marvellous and worthy to be counted among the great miracles. Therefore, this exultation, or should we say, response to a greeting offered to the Mother of the Lord, as usually happens in miracles, was a divine act in the child, not a human act of the child” (ep. 187,23).

         Elizabeth was hidden during five months. On the other hand, she is visited by Mary, Mother of the Lord, on the sixth month, and the infant leaps in her womb as if he were already beginning to manifest the prophecy from the first coming of the Lord, when he condescended to appear with humility in the womb; that is, not yet so clearly for the world to proclaim that it is manifest. (By leaping in the womb, John is already prophesying that the Lord has come, but this is not yet seen by the world since both babies are still in the womb.) What we believe will happen in the second coming of the Lord when he comes on glory, a coming in which Elijah is awaited as precursor, in the same way that John was his. See why the Lord says: Elijah has already come but they treated him as they pleased; and if you want to know it, Elijah who was to come is John the Baptist himself, because this has already come with the same spirit and the same power, as in the function of a herald who goes before, that also will come. For this reason it is said that by the same spirit with which the father, his prophet, was filled, so also the precursor of the Lord will be filled with the spirit and power of Elijah. Finally, Mary, after having spent three months with Elizabeth, returned home. With this number it seems to me that the faith in the BlessedTrinity is signified and the baptism in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, by which humankind is purified thanks to the coming of the Lord in humility, and is even exalted by the future coming in glory” (diu. qu. 58, 3).

D. Oratio

With the text, let us now pray from the depths of our heart. I suggest the following phrases and questions that can awaken in you dialogue with God, and at the same time can give rise to affections and sentiments in your dialogue with God. Do not move to the next phrase or question if you can still continue dialoguing with God in one of them. It is not a matter of exhausting the list, but of helping you to pray with some points that better fit your personal experience.

  1. “Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and cried out in a loud voice: ‘Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb’” (Lk 1:32).
  2. How important is the Holy Spirit in your life?
  3. In your point of view, why is Mary blessed among women?
  • “At the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy” (Lk. 1:44).
  • What place does joy occupy in your life?
  • What is the source of your joy? How do you manifest your joy?

E. Contemplatio

I propose to you some points for affective interior contemplation. Once again you do not need to follow all of it, rather you can choose what fits your personal experience.

  1. Contemplate Elizabeth receiving the greeting of Mary and experiencing in her womb the leap of joy of her son caused by the presence of the Saviour. Contemplate and adore.
  2. Contemplate Mary at the moment of the Annunciation. Like her, see in your heart what God manifests to you in prayer (Lk. 2:19).

F. Communicatio

Think of everything that you can share with those around you about the experience you had with God, especially about joy for the presence of Christ.The following points can help you as guide to share with your community the experience of the lectio divina on this text:

  • What have I discovered about God and about myself in this moment of prayer?
  • How can I apply this text of Scripture at this moment of my life? What light does it give me? What challenges does it put before me?
  • What concrete commitment does this text of Scripture ask of me in my spiritual life, in my community life?
  • What has been my predominant sentiment during this moment of prayer?

G. Final Prayer of St. Augustine

Turning towards the Lord:

         Lord God, Father Almighty, with pure heart, as far as our littleness permits, allow us to give you our most devoted and sincere thanks, begging with all our strength from your particular goodness, that by your power you may drive away the enemy from all our thoughts and actions; that you may increase our faith, govern our mind, give us spiritual thoughts, and bring us to your happiness, through your SonJesus Christ, our Lord, who with you lives and reigns, in the unity of the HolySpirit, God, forever and ever. Amen (en. Ps. 150:8).

advent-4th-sunday-wreath4

Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

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< 2019 >
February
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     1
  • All day
    February 1, 2019

    32nd FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY (1987-2019) OF THE OUR LADY OF CONSOLATION PARISH, Miranila, Quezon City
    Note: The celebration is moved to February 3 (Sunday)

    REGIONAL RAY SUMMIT – LUZON
    Inclusive dates: February 1-3, 2019
    Venue: SSC-R de Cavite, Cañacao Campus
    Theme: “Filipino Youth in Mission: Beloved. Gifted. Empowered.”

2
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    February 2, 2019

    FEAST – PRESENTATION OF THE LORD (CANDELARIA)

    WORLD DAY FOR CONSECRATED LIFE

    Day of Consecrated Life- Diocese of Cubao
    Venue: National Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Broadway Avenue, New Manila, Quezon City

    15:00 Registration
    15:30 Talk: “Challenges and Prophetic Roles of the Priestly and Consecrated Life in our Time.” Speaker: Most Rev. Pablo Virgilio David, D.D.
    17:00 Snacks
    17:30 Solemn Vespers
    18:00 Eucharistic Celebration Mass Presider: Most Rev. Honesto F. Ongtioco, D.D.
    19:00 Fellowship

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Petra Pascual, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Socorro Japson, AR

3
  • All day
    February 3, 2019

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
    DAY 1: ROME – ABU DHABI
    13:00 Departure by plane from Roma/Fiumicino for Abu Dhabi
    22:00 Arrival at Abu Dhabi Presidential Airport / Official Welcome

    CEAP SUPERINTENDENTS COMMISSION MID-YEAR ASSEMBLY
    Inclusive Dates: February 3-6, 2019
    Venue: L’Fisher Hotel, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ceferino Añez

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Filomena de Jesus, AR

4
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    February 4, 2019

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
    DAY 2: ABU DHABI
    12:00 Welcome Ceremony at the main entrance of the Presidential Palace
    12:20 Official visit to the Crown Prince in the Presidential Palace
    17:00 Private meeting with the members of the Muslim Council of Elders in the Grand Mosque of Sheik Zayed
    18:10 Interreligious meeting at the Founder’s Memorial

    MEETING OF THE COMMISSION ON FINANCE AND ASSETS IN ROME
    Inclusive dates: February 4-8, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Bernard Amparado
    Sr. Andrea Cabunilas, AR
    Sr. Jannet Nicer, AR

5
  • All day
    February 5, 2019

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
    DAY 3: ABU DHABI – ROME
    9:15 Private visit to the Cathedral
    10:30 Holy Mass in the ZAYED SPORTS CITY
    12:40 Farewell Ceremony at Abu Dhabi Presidential Airport
    13:00 Departure by plane for Rome
    17:00 Arrival in Rome/Ciampino International Airport

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray James Castelo
    Fray Jovy Gallego
    Sr. Anselma Millan, AR

6
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    February 6, 2019

    SPORTSFEST – USJ-R, BALAMBAN CAMPUS
    Inclusive dates: February 6-9, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ronel Gealon
    Mo. Ma. Emilia Gaspillo, AR
    Sr. Doraine Suyko, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Fray Alberto Avanzado

7
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    February 7, 2019

    13th PROVINCIAL COUNCIL MEETING

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jess Marco Sanchez
    Sr. Ma. Lina Gonzaga, AR
    Sr. Gewena Gay Villarubia, AR

8
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    February 8, 2019

    5th INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER AND AWARENESS AGAINST HUMAN TRAFFICKING (cf. LAMP, 52)

    GENERAL ASSEMBLY MEETING – CORE GROUP OF THE SECRETARIAT OF SPIRITUALITY AND FORMATION
    Venue: Bulwagang Recoletos Atrium
    8:00 AM – 5:00 PM

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Elflida Palma, AR

9
  • All day
    February 9, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Elpidio Sarita, Jr.

10
  • All day
    February 10, 2019

    20th INAUGURATION ANNIVERSARY (1999-2019)
    OF THE PROVINCE OF ST. EZEKIEL MORENO

11
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    February 11, 2019

    OUR LADY OF LOURDES

    WORLD DAY OF THE SICK (cf. LAMP, 52)

    90th ANNIVERSARY OF THE SIGNING OF THE LATERAN TREATY FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE STATE OF VATICAN CITY (1929)

    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION OF BISHOP-ELECT RONALD IGNACIO LUNAS of PAGADIAN

    MEETING OF THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF VOCATIONS AND YOUTH – SECTION FOR VOCATION MINISTRY
    Rome / February 11-12, 2019

    PATRONAL FIESTA – OUR LADY OF LOURDES CHAPLAINCY
    Brgy. Tambo, Ayungon, Negros Oriental

    23rd ANNIVERSARY of the RST-UST Affiliation (1995-2019)

    ARRIVAL OF FATHER GENERAL FOR VISITA DE RENOVACION – ST. EZEKIEL PROVINCE

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Filomena Oliva, AR
    Sr. Marisa Dacuya, AR

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
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    Fray Roweno Eugenio Hamo
    Fray Sir Michael Dineros
    Fray John Paul Tanquis

12
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    February 12, 2019

    INSTALLATION OF BISHOP-ELECT DAVID WILLIAM ANTONIO OF ILAGAN

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    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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13
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    February 13, 2019

    MEETING OF THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF VOCATIONS AND YOUTH, WITH THE PRESIDENTS OF THE PROVINCIAL SECRETARIAT
    Rome / February 13-14, 2019

    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE PLARIDEL

14
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15
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    Sr. Maria Aurora Baygan, AR

16
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    February 16, 2019

    FATHER GENERAL’S MEETING WITH THE AR SISTERS & SARF-PALAWAN CHAPTERS AT SEMSDC, PUERTO PRINCESA

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Porferia Tundag, AR

17
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    February 17, 2019

    CULMINATION OF ESCUELA DE FORMACION IN COLOMBIA

    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE BALAMBAN

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Virgilio Paredes, Jr.

18
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    MEETING OF THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF SPIRITUALITY AND FORMATION – SECTIONS FOR INITIAL AND PERMANENT FORMATION
    Colombia

    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE LARAY
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    Fray Mark Saludes

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Genoveva del Sgdo. Corazon de Jesus, AR

19
  • All day
    February 19, 2019

    MEETING OF THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF SPIRITUALITY AND FORMATION WITH THE PRESIDENTS OF THE PROVINCIAL SECRETARIATS OF SPIRITUALITY AND FORMATION
    Colombia

    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE CEBU

    ARRIVAL OF FRAY ANTONIO CARRON FROM ROME

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2003-2019)
    Most. Rev. Patricio Buzon, SDB, D.D. (Bishop of Bacolod)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Pia de San Sebastian, AR
    Sr. Josefina Disen, AR

20
  • All day
    February 20, 2019

    FATHER GENERAL JOINS MEETING WITH GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF APOSTOLATE
    Talavera House of Prayer-Recoletos, Cebu City

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Ines de Padua, AR

21
  • All day
    February 21, 2019

    MEETING WITH PRESIDENTS OF EPISCOPAL CONFERENCES
    Inclusive dates: February 21-24, 2019

    PRESENTATION OF FRAY CARRÓN AND MESSAGE FROM FATHER GENERAL WITH ALL RELIGIOUS, LAY ADMIN AND FACULTY & STAFF OF THE RECOLETOS SCHOOLS IN CEBU, TOGETHER WITH THOSE WORKING IN THE PASTORAL MINISTRY IN CEBU
    Venue: USJ-R Center for Performing Arts, Cebu / 10:00 – 12:00
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    BIRTHDAY
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    ANNIVERSARY OF CREATION AS CARDINAL
    (2001-2019)
    Pope Francis (Jorge Mario Bergoglio)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Aniceta de la Santisima Trinidad, AR

22
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    February 22, 2019

    FEAST – CHAIR OF ST. PETER
    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE VALENCIA
    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Flora Silverio, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Ma. Lucila Reyes, AR

23
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    February 23, 2019

    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE TAMBO

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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    Sr. Exaltacion Lagrimas, AR

24
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    BIRTHDAY
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    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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25
  • All day
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    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE BACOLOD

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Roselyn Jardenil, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Wenifreda Sajorda, AR

26
  • All day
    February 26, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Julius James Tinapao [simple prof.]

    PRESENTATION OF FRAY CARRÓN AND MESSAGE FROM FATHER GENERAL WITH ALL RELIGIOUS, LAY ADMIN AND FACULTY & STAFF OF THE RECOLETOS SCHOOLS IN NEGROS, TOGETHER WITH THOSE WORKING IN THE PASTORAL MINISTRY IN NEGROS
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    BLESSING OF THE UNO-R IS BUILDING

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Fray Severino Cuesta (2000-2019)
    Sr. Teresa Constantino, AR

27
  • All day
    February 27, 2019

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    AM: FATHER GENERAL’S VISIT TO OAR NUNS IN TANGUB MONASTERY

    RENEWAL VISIT TO RECOLETOS DE TALISAY

    BIRTHDAY
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28
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    February 28, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Crisanta Armendez, AR
    Mr. Fulgencio Culaton (Brother-General of the Order)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Milagros de San Nicolas de Tolentino, AR

  

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