Essays/Articles and Scriptural Studies
COLLECTS OF THE ROMAN MISSAL - SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 2nd, 2018 A.D.: 22nd SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
(Missale Romanum 1970)
For today’s meditation on the Collects of the Roman Missal, we consider today’s Collect for the Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time (MR’70). The following is the official ICEL English translation of this prayer:
“God of might, giver of every good gift, put into our hearts the love of Your name, so that, by deepening our sense of reverence, You may nurture in us what is good and, by Your watchful care, keep safe what You have nurtured. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.”
Our petition today centers on the reverence and love owed God’s Name. In reverencing God’s Name, we show reverence for God Himself, thus fulfilling the Second Commandment. We may understand the reality of God’s Name in three ways: (1) the Tetragrammaton (“YHWH,” translated as “I AM WHO I AM’) the Name which God revealed to Moses, (2) any other Biblical Name that is used as a substitute for the Tetragrammaton, such as “Lord” or “God,” and (3) the Holy Name of Jesus, before which every knee shall bow (cf. Phil. 2:10).
In order to deepen our love and reverence for God’s Name, as well as the Name of the Incarnate Son of God, let us read excerpts from the Catechism of the Catholic Church nos. 206-7, 213, 430, 433:
206 “.....This divine name is mysterious just as God is mystery. It is at once a name revealed and something like the refusal of a name, and hence it better expresses God as what He is - infinitely above everything that we can understand or say: He is the ‘hidden God’, His name is ineffable, and He is the God who makes Himself close to men.”
207 “.....God, who reveals His name as ‘I AM’, reveals Himself as the God who is always there, present to His people in order to save them.”
213 “The revelation of the ineffable name ‘I AM WHO AM’ contains then the truth that God alone IS…God is the fullness of Being and of every perfection, without origin and without end. All creatures receive all that they are and have from Him; but He alone is His very being, and He is of Himself everything that He is.”
430 “Jesus means in Hebrew: ‘God saves’...which expresses both His identity and His mission. Since God alone can forgive sins, it is God who, in Jesus His eternal Son made man, ‘will save his people from their sins.’”
433 “The name of the Savior God was invoked only once in the year by the high priest in atonement for the sins of Israel, after he had sprinkled the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies with the sacrificial blood. The mercy seat was the place of God's presence. When St. Paul speaks of Jesus whom ‘God put forward as an expiation by His blood’, he means that in Christ's humanity ‘God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself.’”
In light of this last paragraph, then, consider the weight of the following: the invocation of Jesus’ Name with reverence and faith in our private prayer connects us mystically and directly to the Mass, wherein Jesus renews His sacrifice, fulfilling once again the meaning of His Name. In reverencing the Holy Name, then, we are gratefully reaffirming our faith in Jesus’ divine identity and the efficacy of His salvation.
Such prayer also fortifies us against all the sins and temptations that threaten to dismantle the gift of sanctifying grace. This is why the Rosary is so helpful in our life of devotion, since the Holy Name is the center of each Hail Mary (cf. Catechism no. 435). Such honor and love for Jesus leads to the hoped-for outcome of strengthening and protecting the life of grace.(David Allen)
|Mr. David Allen, M.T.S., is the lay Pastoral Associate for our parish of Mary Immaculate of Lourdes.