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The Angelus

05 Jul 2015, by Rev. Fr. Joel Okojie OSA in Mater Dei

angelus bellIn a particular Catholic Parish, a big Church bell was install not too long ago that goes off at 6 am, 12 pm, and 6 pm, respectively. At its sound, a lot of people admired it and wondered what it met, especially the young ones. It dawned on me that many Catholics have wandered far away from our traditional faith, the faith of our fathers.

The sound of the bell is a call to prayer, the prayer we call the Angelus in the Catholic Church. The Angelus is from the Latin phrase Angelus domini nuntiavit Mariae, meaning the angel of the Lord brought tidings to Mary. It is a prayer that reminds us of the great mystery of the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ and continually thanks God for this important event that happened in the history of mankind. At the sound of the Angelus bell, we take one or two minutes out of whatever we may be doing at the time, to pray the Angelus. AngelusA French painter named Jean -Francois Millet painted a couple taking some time out of their work time on the farm to say this prayer. A famous painting was done in the 19th century reflecting a famous prayer in the Catholic Church. Here is the Angelus:

V. The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary
R. And she conceived of the Holy Spirit
Hail Mary, full of grace,
The Lord is with Thee;
Blessed art thou among women,
And blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us sinners,
Now and at the hour of our death
. Amen

V. Behold the handmaid of the Lord.
R. Be it done unto me according to thy word
Hail Mary, etc.
V. And the Word was made flesh.
R. And dwelt among us.
Hail Mary etc.
V. Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts
That we to whom the incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known
By the message of an Angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought
To the glory of his resurrection. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

In this prayer, we recall how God honored Mary by sending an Angel to declare to her that she would be the mother of the Lord. The angel hailed Mary for she is full of God’s grace. In humility, Mary surrendered to the will of God, and the Son of God was brought forth through her. Three times daily we remind ourselves and meditate on this mystery of God’s love and pray that we to whom this message was made known may be brought to the glory of the resurrection, through Christ our Lord.
If the Angel left heaven to come down to honor Mary, we should be able to take some time out of our busy schedule to say this prayer in thanksgiving to God for his love and in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary. May her Motherly love and protections be always around us all, Amen.