Advent, the season of preparation for the great feast of Christmas, is quickly approaching! We wanted to share a few of our traditions that we keep here at the monastery during this beautiful season of the liturgical year.
On November 31, the feast of Saint Andrew, we will begin the unfailing “Hail and Blessed” prayer. The meditative prayer is traditionally recited fifteen times a day until Christmas for a special intention. Here is the prayer:
“Hail and blessed be the hour and moment In which the Son of God was born Of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in the piercing cold. In that hour vouchsafe, I beseech Thee, O my God, to hear my prayer and grant my desires, [here mention your request] through the merits of Our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of His blessed Mother. Amen.”
On December 1st we will also begin building our “Spiritual Christmas Crib.” This lovely Advent practice, written by Fr. Frederic Nelson, gives a practice and prayer for each day of December until Christmas. Each day is a part of the stable that you prepare by practicing the suggested exercise and reciting the prayer as often as you can throughout the day.
We hope these simple prayers and practices will help you make this one of the best Advents of your life! Veni Domine Jesu! Come Lord Jesus!