“According to the traditional practice, a lamp should burn continually near the tabernacle as a sign of the honor paid to the Lord”. (Code of Canon Law, can. 940)
One of the most comforting symbols in Catholicism is the tabernacle lamp – the small red flicker of the flame burning before the tabernacle – a sign that Christ is truly Emmanuel, “God among us.” In the Old Testament, God told Moses that a lamp filled with the pure oil should perpetually burn in the Tabernacle (Ex 27:20-21). The tabernacle light gives honor for the presence of Christ, who is the Light of the World. As the U.S. Bishops in their guidelines about church art and architecture, "Built of Living Stones," reminded us, candles in churches "are signs of reverence and festivity. ... The living flame of the candle, symbolic of the risen Christ, reminds people that in baptism they are brought out of darkness into God's marvelous light."
As a few of you have pointed out, many parishes publish the following in their bulletins: "The Sanctuary Lamp will burn this week for someone's intention". I have been approached by some parishioners inquiring about the possibility of implementing the same practice in our church. However it has also been brought to my attention that not everyone favors this idea. They would rather have the Sanctuary Lamp as the sign of the presence of the Lord, who illuminates us, and prays with us daily as a parish family. After thinking carefully about the two different points of view, I came to the conclusion that as our parish gathers together for the Miraculous Medal Novena every Monday, we will start lighting a candle on the altar in front of St. Catherine Labouré and the Blessed Mother. The candle will burn for the entire week for someone's intention.
If anyone would like to request an 'intention', please let us know in advance and it will be published in the bulletin.
The Lamp will burn this week:
- November 12-November 18 - in Loving Memory of Bill Fitzgerald
- November 5-November 11 - in Loving Memory of the Deceased Members of the Luby and Pierson Family
- October 29-November 4 - For our Parish
- October 21-October 28 - in Loving Memory of Donald and Dorothy Luby
- October 15-October 20 - in Loving Memory of Elizabeth Fitzgerald