Mary: Our Mother, Our Teacher, Our Pathfinder to Christ12.20.17
She said, “Yes.” Mary, our Blessed Mother, who was conceived without sin, offered this simple utterance in complete faith, thereby changing the world by bringing Christ to all people.
Celebrating the Immaculate Conception and preparing for Christ’s Incarnation, The Athenaeum/Mount St. Mary’s Seminary honored the Virgin Mary with a Lessons and Carols celebration on December 7, the Vigil of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, the patronal feast of the seminary.
From the far end of the Athenaeum’s east wing, the voices of the Seminary Schola and the Athenaeum Chorale, punctuated by the chiming of hand bells, grew in volume as the members approached the narthex of St. Gregory the Great Chapel. There, they paused by a statue of Our Lady, a blanket of white poinsettias beneath her feet.
Earlier, at the pre-event reception for Bishop Fenwick Society (BFS) members, Eva Komoroski, mother of Seminarian, Christopher Komoroski, remarked, “This is one of the most beautiful events in the city.” Jane Hoffman from St. Antoninus said, “It’s the perfect way to start Advent, to be reminded of what Christmas is all about – Jesus.”
Inside the Chapel, the story of Christ’s coming was prayerfully retold through Scripture reading and sacred song. The only source of light, which emanated from candles, illuminated the tabernacle and the gold painting of the Risen Christ above it, making them glow in contrast to the dark wood of the sanctuary.
Second theology seminarian, Scott Brand, said, “Lessons and Carols is a very joyous occasion. All of the music is incredible. It’s also the best connection that we have with people in greater Cincinnati; I’m always amazed that there is standing room only each year.”
The crowd included 100 more BFS members than last year, which impressed Kyle Isaack, Director of Advancement for the Athenaeum. “More people have said “yes” this year”, remarked Kyle.
Noting the staunch support of BFS members and other donors, the dedication of faculty and staff and the compliance of the seminarians, Kyle said Lessons and Carols brings the community together to commence Advent and to celebrate the Patroness of the United States and of Mount St. Mary’s Seminary. Kyle reflected, “It fuels people. Mary’s “yes” helps us to say “yes” too.”
Click the following link to see a photo gallery of Lessons & Carols http://www.mtsm.org/PhotoGalleries/PhotoGallery74.aspx
Text Credit: Colleen Kammer
Photo Credit: E.L. Hubbard Photography and Susan Declercq.