"Are we prepared to promote conditions in which the living contact with God can be reestablished? For our lives today have become godless to the point of complete vacuity. God is no longer with us in the conscious sense of the word. He is denied, ignored, excluded from every claim to have a part in our daily life." - Alfred Delp, S.J.
Monday, January 01, 2007
The Old Feast of the Day was a Commemoration of the Bris of Jesus.
Or the Feast of the Circumcision of the Lord.
As well as the naming of Jesus. Some people think that it was a rite akin to Baptism, to purify the Jew from original sin - some fundamentalists think this. NOT. Here is a description for those who never watched the episode on "The Nanny" with Fran Drescher:
The Origin of Bris Milah (Circumcision)
Times change. Styles change. But some things never change: Bris Milah is one of them. It is a bond between God and the Jewish nation for all time. It is a bond that can never be broken.
When our forefather Abraham reached the ripe old age of 99 years (Genesis 17) the Almighty promised him that his descendants would have a special relationship with their Creator. This would forever be symbolized by the Bris Milah (Covenant of Circumcision). "This will be a sign of the covenant between Me and you".
Abraham circumcised himself as well as all the men of his household. When his son Isaac was born, he too, underwent Bris Milah on the eighth day, as Divinely specified. (As did Jesus today.)
Heroism Throughout the Ages
Throughout the generations the Jewish people have been unyielding in performing this mitzvah. Bris Milah was often performed in secret, defying innumerable despots and hostile regimes.
Nazi Germany, Communist Russia, and ancient Greece and Rome all tried to ban Bris Milah. They understood correctly that this distinctive rite is the cornerstone of the Jewish faith, and that proscribing it would be the first step towards eliminating our nation.
The Jewish people, non-observant as well as observant, are uncompromising on this issue. They recognize that in order for their children to survive as Jews, they must induct them into the Divine covenant of Bris Milah. (The Child Jesus was no exception.)
The Mohel (pronounced, moiyh-el)
A Mohel performs the circumcision with spiritual intent. A Bris by a Mohel is more than a simple medical procedure; it is a connection with the Divine. At a Bris Milah blessings are said and prayers are recited as the child takes his place as a member of the Jewish people. Carried out according to Jewish tradition, Bris Milah is a profoundly moving experience for all in attendance. - Bris, Jewish Circumcision
Thus with my male health problems, the Divine Infant Jesus is most assuredly the focus of my prayer in this first of His sufferings and shedding of blood.
"Jesus, sweetest Child, circumcised on the eighth day, called by the glorious name of Jesus, and by your name and your blood, revealed as the Savior of the world; have mercy on us!" - Carmelite novena to the Infant Jesus.