Dec 20, 2020

The Opening Prayer (Collect) of today’s Mass for the Fourth Sunday of Advent is the concluding prayer of the “Angelus.”

Here’s a brief video clip about this beautiful prayer.

The clip concludes with an invitation to pray together. So right now, before you watch, take a moment to call to mind the intention for which you want to pray.

Now let’s watch, and pray, united with the many people who will watch this clip and who are joining you in prayer with you and for you, and for your intentions.

O Key of David
and sceptre of the House of Israel!
You open and no one closes,
You close and no one opens:
Come and lead out of prison the captive
who sits in darkness and the shadow of death.


  1. Amen thank you Father John for deeper meaning to these special prayers and reflection Amen

  2. Yes John a beautiful prayer
    Here at Pukekaraka Ōtaki is a bell which has sounded the Angelus since the 1840’s. One Māori catechist Hakaraia, rang the Angelus for 50 years of his life.
    In praying the Angelus we join generations of Catholics who probably pray it with us still.

    • Yes Phil, it was at the Ōtaki convent school that I first learned the angelus prayer in 1961. The bell would ring and we would stop our school work to recite the Angelus prayer. I loved the rhythm of the bell and the ritual it invoked. We have the famous Angelus painting in our lounge, an ongoing reminder of the incarnation.

  3. Thank you so much for bring back my childhood memories of school. Wherever we were in class, or in the playground as soon as those bells rang I knew it was the Angelus. Very happy memories of my time in prayer with others. SKJ

  4. I too was reminded of school days when we stopped at noon to say the Angelus, a daily reminder of basis of my Faith. Thankyou Fr. John for prayer time this morning.

  5. All the blessed words and the beautiful music mirrors for me the bright ‘aurora’ of the polar lights in the night sky.

    Thank you for uniting us all at this special time of spiritual renewal and preparation for Christmas and the New Year.

    I pray this morning that we are all graced in harmony with the in-depth meaning of Christmas and remain united in blessings of contentment and peace. +

  6. Thank you john for this reflection. So often the particular words of prayer or those of the mass simply wash over us. How better would it be if we said less but weighed each word more fully

    So often I enter mass with the desire to listen carefully to each word and prayer only to discover 40 minutes later that I’ve cruised through most of them without attention at all.

    Your reflection today reminds me of the beauty of prayer and it’s purpose to stimulate our thoughts and desires, more so than God ever needs to hear those words from us

  7. Thank you for a well intentional guide to deep meaningful reflection on the most common simple prayer that invites us again to a mindful being in prayer. Mary Pray for us all . Amen

  8. Before the earthquake the bells of the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament used the ring out the Angelus at noon each day, it could be heard all over Christchurch.

  9. I think the first time I heard the angelus was when I went to Marist Boys in Gisborne 1951, a 12 year old. I learnt to say the rosary a few years earlier, said by family after dinner most nights. How scared I was of making a mistake, when it was my turn to say a decade. St Thomas Aquinas preached 40 straight days in Rome,on just the Hail Mary.

  10. making my 1st communion,I was given a holy medal,and a little
    Hardback coloured
    Prayer book,each day and
    At night, I would gaze at the
    Holy Mary image,on a certain
    Picture.Holy Mother Mary,
    Carried me through my
    Childhood,To JESUS.
    “Hail Mary,full Of Grace”


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