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Rorate Meditation
Author: Nathaniel Slattery
Posted: Month of the Holy Name, 9th Day, Year of Our Lord 2023
free HD photo of netherlands, maastricht, church interior and iconic building in Maastricht, Netherlands by Pourya Gohari

There is in the world many fires burning at the tips of candles, set to illumine this or that glory of God. All these are a type in goodness though with dimness of those wonderful stars which illumine Heaven, the handiwork of the Lord, and the firmament declares His greatness. Amongst them is the moon, which is set apart singularly in greatness, and they rejoice which are near to it, for they have little care for the eyes of earthly men, except as how God wills it. Some of the most proximate are Philomena, Joseph, the Baptist, Michael. But Our Blessed Mother is that moon and greatest fire which illumines the night, the darkness of the world, our place this side of the veil with blinded eyes and stopped up ears which cannot see this Heaven so perpetually before us. For She will triumph, and the world shall be as intended, an open and loving praise of the Lord above, an age stretching longer than all else before it.

Oh, but the rising of the Sun! What have we not seen which we are lacking? The devil has his hour, and the Son of Man will have His Day! For that whirlwind of fire which flashes forth at the Gates of Eden emanates from the Sacred Heart in loving us and flies out over the whole world, faster than wind, above our souls and snatching at them. Why do we hold on so? We dig fingernails into our bodies with such great terror, loving this tiresome and useless world, afraid of heights, doubting Our Lord’s love for us! Let go, oh my soul, and be taken! My body, cast forth this dear companion, let her travel, for she shall bring you the treasures of Heaven! Lay down for a time and rise again to reward! You shall never suffer perdition or purgation again, but shall have great joy! Why do you cling like Adam unto Eve, when she is espoused to Our Lord, and you are the guest of the Wedding Feast? Let go, let go, oh animal, holding that which pleases you, grabbing at what you do not deserve, when so much more is offered you for your sacrifice! Let go, let go, for you must be celibate and let her marry her Beloved, Who has condemned you once to die and then to reward. Let go! Dear body, let go!

I was recommended to post this by a dear and faithful friend. It is a meditation and prayer which I wrote after a Rorate Caeli mass. In the Rorate Caeli mass, you begin before sunrise with only candlelight. Ours in particular had one candle at each sacred image, and in one corner we have several Marian statues and images all forced into a place that doesn’t quite hold them, so there were many candles for the Blessed Mother, and then the altar itself was so full of candles that I can only remember it in my imagination as if it was dripping fire. Then, as mass progresses, the sun slowly rises and fills the sanctuary, effectively dimming all the candles. This year it was extra slow because of much fog, and the process was still ongoing by the time we witnessed the elevation of the Eucharist. rorate Caeli occurs in Advent and is symbolic of Christ as the Light of the world slowly being revealed and glorified along the timeline of the Joyful mysteries of the Rosary until about His baptism.

Hence, while I attended, I was meditating upon this, upon my own writing which is becoming more public and which this same friend has encouraged me in. He claims that God intends to place it on a table and not under a bushel, and this happened to be the same passage which was the reading at the time of another dear friend’s death this year, a holy priest who had also cultivated my writing, who I have mentioned in my other articles, particularly the article on First Saturday. 

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