Today, December 2nd, marks the beginning of Advent season for 2019. In Polish tradition there is a beautiful custom surrounding Advent called roraty. It is a special early morning mass, before daybreak, devoted specifically to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The special name for this mass comes from the Introit, the opening antifon or Latin chant, Rorate Coeli, at the beginning of the mass. It was the prayer of the prophet Isaiah(45:8) begging the Lord for the arrival of a Savior.
The mass is said before dawn, in the dark, as a symbol that the world was in darkness until the arrival of Jesus as Light of the World. A special feature of the mass is the lighting of a special candle decorated with a white or blue ribbon, the colors associated with the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Gwiazda Zaranna, the Morning Star. Traditionally the liturgy began in the dark, the faithful often coming with their own candles to light their way.
In this day and age, when many do not have access to churches that still offer this mass, the faithful can still have their own rorata, their own candle that is lit each morning before dawn. It can be their own time of thoughtfulness, reflection and quiet prayer during the Advent season while listening to Rorate coeli the Latin chant that opens the mass.
One of the biggest moments in my life was being able to sign for my very own library card. When I'm not reading, researching and writing I'm riding my bike, sewing or gardening. I love flea markets, folk art, and traveling to Poland.