Sunday, January 14, 2024

How Christ Said the First Mass (Foretold in the Temple) by Fr. James Meagher

 Excerpt from:

How Christ Said the First Mass
Fr. James Meagher


The Catholic Church, its divisions of porch, nave, and sanctuary, its ornaments, vestments, and ceremonial, came from the Jewish Temple and the synagogue of the time of Christ.

The Passover service was modeled on the Temple worship. Thus the Last Supper combined in one ceremonial the patriarchal worship, the tabernacle, the
Temple, the synagogue, all united in one feast the Hebrews called the Passover, which Christ fulfilled and changed into the Mass. Let us therefore see first the
Temple, its divisions, its rites, its ceremonies, and its sacramentals, that we may better understand the ceremonies Christ followed when he said the first Mass.
To teach truth by visible objects is an instinct of our nature. Words, spoken or printed, represent ideas. But we love to show our thoughts by actions. Even animals
make-believe a fight in play ; with her doll the girl images her motherly instinct ; boys amuse themselves with toys; men speak in figure, type, parable; tone of voice, shade word meanings, show hate, anger, fear or sorrow, and smile, tear, and sob tell our feelings.
We love to see the actor in the play represent, not himself but a celebrated personage. Therefore, before the dawn of history, the theater was found in civilized lands, where on its stage tragedy, comedy, and history were imaged before delighted audiences.
God made use of these representative instincts through which to foretell the future Tragedy of Calvary, to prophesy the Last Supper and the Mass. This was the best
way to teach mankind, in that age when Adam's children were ignorant, when words were few, when language was hardly formed, when ideas were crude, when books were unknown, when few could read or write.
From the gates of Eden the Redeemer was revealed, the woman's Seed who was to come and conquer the serpent-demon who had enslaved mankind. But how was the
revelation to be handed down in that age of the childhood of our race ? God made use of this representative instinct of our nature, and told the life of the foretold Christ in the ceremonial of sacrifice, in the rites of the tabernacle, and in the ceremonies of the Temple. We will, therefore, first see the Temple, its ceremonies, for these we will later find in the Last Supper.
To Jew and unbeliever the Temple has ever been a riddle, and they have written countless books to explain its mysteries. The Catholic Church alone has the key
which unlocks the mysteries of that maze of vast bewildering building, with its Holy of Holies, Holies, Priests' Court, Court of Israel, Women's Court, Chel, Choi,
Cloisters, some roofed, others open to the sky, with various chambers, each at the time of Christ having its own proper use.
The wonderful building, with its rites and ceremonies, was a divine poem written by God to reveal present, past and future. In the past, the Jew saw God his Creator,
mankind in original innocence, the Temptation and the Fall, the condemnation on our race, woman's deeper wound, the promise of the woman's Seed, sinners
drowned when the world was baptized by the flood, the call of Abraham, the blessing on his race, the revelation given the Hebrews, their delivery from Egyptian slavery, the manna their food for forty years, their miraculous preservation and struggles, the whole world plunged into darkest idolatry, the glory of their judges, and the splendors of David and Solomon.
The Temple was the very heart and soul of the Jewish Church, in which alone Jehovah was then adored in days of deepest paganism. But beyond, deep into the future, the Temple story and worship carried their minds, down to the days of Christ, to his Last Supper, to his atrocious death, to the New Testament, to the Catholic Church * with her Pontiff, her bishops, her priests, her sacraments and her millions of redeemed souls.*
The Temple and its vast ceremonial formed a book within and without written by God's eternal hand, not in dead lifeless letters as man writes, but in warm, living
signs, symbols, types and figures. Amid the multitudes of Temple emblems, let us take those relating to our subject, and read the lessons of this Divine Poem, this
heavenly poetry, this drama of Calvary, transcendent above all others — God its author here taught the future death of the only Begotten Son.^
The Holy of Holies closed by a veil represented heaven closed to mankind because of the sin of our first parents. The Holies with its glittering golden altar and walls foretold the church building — especially our sanctuary with its altar on which now the Mass is offered. The Courts with the ministering priests, the sacrificed victims, pre- figured the Jewish priests who later were to kill the Saviour.
The words then of God's wonderful book had two meanings : — one, what the objects showed in themselves; this now alone the Jew can see ; and the other meant the God-Man, the Church, the Eucharistic Sacrifice, and this the Christian with his faith can see. Patriarch, prophet, the holy ones of Israel, filled with faith of the foretold Messiah saw this sacred drama of the future, and read between the lines and behind the objects the story of the redemption of mankind ; thus they walked in the faith, hope and love of Him who was to be born of their race. Thus the holy ones of old saved their souls.
Cenacle and church building were modeled after the Temple. We will therefore give a rapid glance over this great building, famed in all the earth, visited so often by
the Lord, itself being copied from the tabernacle.

> S. Augustine, De civit. Dei, L. xviii. c. 48.
» S. Augustine, In Epist. Joan, ad Parthos, Tracts 11, n. 111.
» S. Thomas, Sum. Theo. I. a, See 102 ; S. Augustine, The Fathers, etc.

Saturday, January 13, 2024

Bishops of Rome, from St. Peter to Pope Francis:

St. Peter (32-67)
St. Linus (67-76)
St. Anacletus (Cletus) (76-88)
St. Clement I (88-97)
St. Evaristus (97-105)
St. Alexander I (105-115)
St. Sixtus I (115-125)
St. Telesphorus (125-136)
St. Hyginus (136-140)
St. Pius I (140-155)
St. Anicetus (155-166)
St. Soter (166-175)
St. Eleutherius (175-189)
St. Victor I (189-199)
St. Zephyrinus (199-217)
St. Callistus I (217-22)
St. Urban I (222-30)
St. Pontian (230-35)
St. Anterus (235-36)
St. Fabian (236-50)
St. Cornelius (251-53)
St. Lucius I (253-54)
St. Stephen I (254-257)
St. Sixtus II (257-258)
St. Dionysius (260-268)
St. Felix I (269-274)
St. Eutychian (275-283)
St. Caius (283-296)
St. Marcellinus (296-304)
St. Marcellus I (308-309)
St. Eusebius (309 or 310)
St. Miltiades (311-14)
St. Sylvester I (314-35)
St. Marcus (336)
St. Julius I (337-52)
Liberius (352-66)
St. Damasus I (366-84)
St. Siricius (384-99)
St. Anastasius I (399-401)
St. Innocent I (401-17)
St. Zosimus (417-18)
St. Boniface I (418-22)
St. Celestine I (422-32)
St. Sixtus III (432-40)
St. Leo I (the Great) (440-61)
St. Hilarius (461-68)
St. Simplicius (468-83)
St. Felix III (II) (483-92)
St. Gelasius I (492-96)
Anastasius II (496-98)
St. Symmachus (498-514)
St. Hormisdas (514-23)
St. John I (523-26)
St. Felix IV (III) (526-30)
Boniface II (530-32)
John II (533-35)
St. Agapetus I (535-36)
St. Silverius (536-37)
Vigilius (537-55)
Pelagius I (556-61)
John III (561-74)
Benedict I (575-79)
Pelagius II (579-90)
St. Gregory I (590-604)
Sabinian (604-606)
Boniface III (607)
St. Boniface IV (608-15)
St. Deusdedit (615-18)
Boniface V (619-25)
Honorius I (625-38)
Severinus (640)
John IV (640-42)
Theodore I (642-49)
St. Martin I (649-55)
St. Eugene I (655-57)
St. Vitalian (657-72)
Adeodatus (II) (672-76)
Donus (676-78)
St. Agatho (678-81)
St. Leo II (682-83)
St. Benedict II (684-85)
John V (685-86)
Conon (686-87)
St. Sergius I (687-701)
John VI (701-05)
John VII (705-07)
Sisinnius (708)
Constantine (708-15)
St. Gregory II (715-31)
St. Gregory III (731-41)
St. Zachary (741-52)
Stephen II (III) (752-57)
St. Paul I (757-67)
Stephen III (IV) (767-72)
Adrian I (772-95)
St. Leo III (795-816)
Stephen IV (V) (816-17)
St. Paschal I (817-24)
Eugene II (824-27)
Valentine (827)
Gregory IV (827-44)
Sergius II (844-47)
St. Leo IV (847-55)
Benedict III (855-58)
St. Nicholas I (858-67)
Adrian II (867-72)
John VIII (872-82)
Marinus I (882-84)
St. Adrian III (884-85)
Stephen V (VI) (885-91)
Formosus (891-96)
Boniface VI (896)
Stephen VI (VII) (896-97)
Romanus (897)
Theodore II (897)
John IX (898-900)
Benedict IV (900-03)
Leo V (903)
Sergius III (904-11)
Anastasius III (911-13)
Lando (913-14)
John X (914-28)
Leo VI (928)
Stephen VIII (929-31)
John XI (931-35)
Leo VII (936-39)
Stephen IX (939-42)
Marinus II (942-46)
Agapetus II (946-55)
John XII (955-63)
Leo VIII (963-64)
Benedict V (964)
John XIII (965-72)
Benedict VI (973-74)
Benedict VII (974-83)
John XIV (983-84)
John XV (985-96)
Gregory V (996-99)
Sylvester II (999-1003)
John XVII (1003)
John XVIII (1003-09)
Sergius IV (1009-12)
Benedict VIII (1012-24)
John XIX (1024-32)
Benedict IX (1032-45)
Sylvester III (1045)
Benedict IX (1045)
Gregory VI (1045-46)
Clement II (1046-47)
Benedict IX (1047-48)
Damasus II (1048)
St. Leo IX (1049-54)
Victor II (1055-57)
Stephen X (1057-58)
Nicholas II (1058-61)
Alexander II (1061-73) Opposed by Honorius II, antipope (1061-1072)
St. Gregory VII (1073-85)
Blessed Victor III (1086-87)
Blessed Urban II (1088-99)
Paschal II (1099-1118)
Gelasius II (1118-19)
Callistus II (1119-24)
Honorius II (1124-30)
Innocent II (1130-43)
Celestine II (1143-44)
Lucius II (1144-45)
Blessed Eugene III (1145-53)
Anastasius IV (1153-54)
Adrian IV (1154-59)
Alexander III (1159-81)
Lucius III (1181-85)
Urban III (1185-87)
Gregory VIII (1187)
Clement III (1187-91)
Celestine III (1191-98)
Innocent III (1198-1216)
Honorius III (1216-27)
Gregory IX (1227-41)
Celestine IV (1241)
Innocent IV (1243-54)
Alexander IV (1254-61)
Urban IV (1261-64)
Clement IV (1265-68)
Blessed Gregory X (1271-76)
Blessed Innocent V (1276)
Adrian V (1276)
John XXI (1276-77)
Nicholas III (1277-80)
Martin IV (1281-85)
Honorius IV (1285-87)
Nicholas IV (1288-92)
St. Celestine V (1294)
Boniface VIII (1294-1303)
Blessed Benedict XI (1303-04)
Clement V (1305-14)
John XXII (1316-34)
Benedict XII (1334-42)
Clement VI (1342-52)
Innocent VI (1352-62)
Blessed Urban V (1362-70)
Gregory XI (1370-78)
Urban VI (1378-89) Opposed by Robert of Geneva ("Clement VII"), antipope (1378-1394)
Boniface IX (1389-1404)
Innocent VII (1404-06)
Gregory XII (1406-15)
Martin V (1417-31)
Eugene IV (1431-47) Opposed by Amadeus of Savoy ("Felix V"), antipope (1439-1449)
Nicholas V (1447-55)
Callistus III (1455-58)
Pius II (1458-64)
Paul II (1464-71)
Sixtus IV (1471-84)
Innocent VIII (1484-92)
Alexander VI (1492-1503)
Pius III (1503)
Julius II (1503-13)
Leo X (1513-21)
Adrian VI (1522-23)
Clement VII (1523-34)
Paul III (1534-49)
Julius III (1550-55)
Marcellus II (1555)
Paul IV (1555-59)
Pius IV (1559-65)
St. Pius V (1566-72)
Gregory XIII (1572-85)
Sixtus V (1585-90)
Urban VII (1590)
Gregory XIV (1590-91)
Innocent IX (1591)
Clement VIII (1592-1605)
Leo XI (1605)
Paul V (1605-21)
Gregory XV (1621-23)
Urban VIII (1623-44)
Innocent X (1644-55)
Alexander VII (1655-67)
Clement IX (1667-69)
Clement X (1670-76)
Blessed Innocent XI (1676-89)
Alexander VIII (1689-91)
Innocent XII (1691-1700)
Clement XI (1700-21)
Innocent XIII (1721-24)
Benedict XIII (1724-30)
Clement XII (1730-40)
Benedict XIV (1740-58)
Clement XIII (1758-69)
Clement XIV (1769-74)
Pius VI (1775-99)
Pius VII (1800-23)
Leo XII (1823-29)
Pius VIII (1829-30)
Gregory XVI (1831-46)
Blessed Pius IX (1846-78)
Leo XIII (1878-1903)
St. Pius X (1903-14)
Benedict XV (1914-22)
Pius XI (1922-39)
Pius XII (1939-58)
St. John XXIII (1958-63)
Paul VI (1963-78)
John Paul I (1978)
St. John Paul II (1978-2005)
Benedict XVI (2005-2013)
Francis (2013—)

Thursday, December 14, 2023

Sunday, December 3, 2023

Great Day in Bethlehem


Narrators     James and Charley

Mary      Lily

Joseph   Matthew

Angel Gabriel   Reza

Question Asker   Lana

Isaiah Speaker I Maria

Isaiah Speaker II Ryan

Magnificat Speaker I Katherine

Magnificat Speaker II   Arianna

Inn Keepers        Nathan Cruz & Stella

Shepherd Angel   Eva Tawney

Shepherd Speaker  Mary Tawney

Shepherds  Beckett, Daniel H, Maria


Everyone on stage

Mary     (center stage)

Narrators at podium with microphone

Question Asker near Narrators   (downstage right) 

2 Isaiah Speakers, 2 Magnificat Speakers   (downstage right)

Angel Gabriel, Joseph    (downstage right)

Shepherds    (downstage left)

Shepherd Angel     (downstage left)

Scene 1:  Intro, 🎶Dem Bones, Isaiah Prophecy 

Narrator II :  

One of the Greatest Stories ever told, is that of Christmas Day . . . . 

when Christ was born in Bethlehem and GLORY spread a long, long way.

Angels sang with joy, guiding shepherds through the night.

A humble manger cradled hope in holy, radiant light.

But our story starts in Genesis; the 6th day . . . . sets the stage.

A tale of grace unfolding, through time’s eternal page.

Question Asker: What IS the story in Genesis?

James: Well . . . 

Dem Bones        

Cast/chorus remain standing (on stage)


God makes it clear that He has a plan to save us even though we are born with original sin. In the Protoevangelium, the first prophecy in the Bible, He tells us of Mary and of Jesus, who is our Savior.

God tells us in Genesis 3:15


I will put enmity between you and the woman,                                                                                

and your seed and her seed.                                                                                                                     

She will crush your head,                                                                                                                        

and you will lie in wait for her heel.

Cast exits stage right and left to go to gym floor places

Stay on stage or wings: 

Mary center stage 

Isaiah Speakers stay

Magnificat Speakers stay (hidden hall)

Gabriel wings stage right

Isaiah Speaker I:  The prophecies in the Bible continue. Isaiah tells us

Isaiah Speaker II:  “Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Emmanuel.”                                                                                                                   

Isaiah Speakers exit stage right and join chorus on gym floor

Scene 2:  🎶Angel Gabriel, 🎶Mary Said Yes, Magnificat 


Narrator II:  God sent the Archangel Gabriel to the town of Nazareth in Galilee to a virgin named Mary. 

She was betrothed to a man named Joseph who was of the line of David.  

Gabriel's Song

Cast remains seated. 

Gabriel enters stage (take microphone from NII) & stands by Mary, who is sitting prayerfully on stepstool center stage.

 James leads and all may sing:  

I'm the angel Gabriel, and I have come to tell you 

That God has chosen you to bear his son.

God told me to tell you

To name the baby Jesus

He will be Emmanuel

Gabriel: Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.  Blessed are you among women.  Do not fear, Mary.  You shall bear a Son, and He will be called Son of the Most High.   

         Mary I am the handmaiden of the Lord.  Be it done unto me according to your word. 

Narrator:   And Jesus, the Word of God, was incarnate of the Virgin Mary and became Man.

What Mary said next, we call the MAGNIFICAT.

Magnificat Speakers to microphone.

Magnificat Speaker 1             

Mary said,

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,

my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,

for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.

From this day all generations will call me blessed:

Magnificat Speaker 2

The Almighty has done great things for me,

and holy is his Name.

He has mercy on those who fear him 

in every generation.

Gabriel and Mag speakers to gym places as chorus stands

Mary Said Yes to God  (chorus et al)

Mary said yes to God one day

Mary said yes to God

She said, "Yes, I will be what you want me to be."

Mary said, "Lord be it done unto me."

Mary said yes to God one day

I will be part of Your plan.

And in the meantime; and in between time.

I'll do the best that I can. "Thank you!"

I'll do the best that I can.

Chorus exits --> to gym floor. 

InnKeepers to stage places

     Joseph walks onto stage to join Mary

Casey joins James for TRAVELERS song.

Scene 3:  Joseph and Mary, 🎶Travelers

Narrator II:  

While Mary was with child, the Roman Emperor decreed that everyone should be registered. Mary and Joseph had to go to Bethlehem for this.  It was a long journey.

Mary & Joseph “walk to Bethlehem.”  

Inn Keepers to stage -- set up “Inn” 

Make sure Mary’s step stool is in place with baby and broom in place during song.


Scene 4:  Bethlehem, Mary & Joseph, Innkeepers, 🎶Silent Night

Narrator II: Joseph and Mary searched and searched for a place to stay.

They finally reached the very last inn. 

Joseph knocks

Innkeeper:  There is no room at the Inn. But you can stay in our stable.

Inn Keepers walk Mary and Joseph to the stable / Mary sits and Joseph sweeps

Narrator: Joseph made it as clean and comfortable as he could. 

And it was in that stable at the back of the Inn that Mary gave birth to her son - the Son of God - Jesus.

Chorus stands, turns to audience, and signs the song. Mary holds baby.

Silent Night 1st verse (Casey) & chorus signs

Scene 5:  Shepherds and Angel, 🎶Away in a Manger

Chorus sits. 

*Shepherds in the chorus go to their places (downstage center).  Enter steps house right/stage left

Shepherd Angel goes onto stage (stage right)& waits to take microphone 

Narrator II:  There were shepherds* in Bethlehem, that night. 

They were outside in the fields, watching their sheep to make sure that nothing hurt them. 

Narrator: Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear.  

Shepherds shield eyes and cower or sit on heels in fear. The Angel Speaker takes microphone and steps in front of narrators & to the shepherds.   

Angel Speaker:   Be not afraid. For behold, I bring you good news of great joy.  

For to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, Who is Christ the Lord.  

You will find the Baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. 

The Shepherd Speaker takes microphone.

Shepherd Speaker

Let us go to Bethlehem, now, and see this baby, which the Lord has made known to us. 

Come let us make haste!

The Shepherd Speaker gives microphone to Angel.

          Angel returns microphone to James & Angel exits stage right to gym floor.

Shepherds to the Baby Jesus & kneel reverently (Alternative: all sing Hark the Herald Angels Sing)

Narrator II:  The shepherds  hurried to Bethlehem and found the stable.

And there, just as the angel told them, was Baby Jesus lying in a manger.

Away in a Manger

Scene 6:  Finale, 🎶Great Day in Bethlehem, 🎶Joy to the World


          Narrator:  The shepherds had met the Messiah!  

          It was truly a Great Day in Bethlehem!

One of the Greatest Stories ever told, is that of Christmas Day . . . . 

when Christ was born in Bethlehem and GLORY spread a long, long way.

The Angels cried, “O Glory Be - Hosanna let us sing!

Let Peace be on earth, good will be toward men, 

for today was born a King!

Great Day in Bethlehem 3X

Get streamers and teachers distribute streamers.

Joyful  procession!

Joy to the World


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