Electronic Prayer Book

A Welcome to Hebrew Christians

 

Click here for a printable copy of this paper

 

We strongly endorse the emerging vision of the Judaeo-Christian Church in which the Jewish heritage is restored to its historic presence, role and availability.

We affirm Hebrew Christians who have chosen to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church and there to continue to honour the practices of their Jewish Faith in the light of Christ.

We celebrate the movement of the Holy Spirit in leading us into such a vibrant and dynamic understanding of the Church in modern society. We wish to give the highest level of support to this development from our traditional Catholic Culture, and indeed have adopted it as a principal focus for our endeavours. In this Electronic Prayer Book we are committed to reviewing our entire contents to ensure they are consistent with our endorsement of this wonderful era in our history: the restoration of the Judaeo-Christian culture within the Church.

As one means of promoting this apostolate we have constructed and located the Electronic Prayer Book within the New Zealand Branch of the Association of Hebrew Catholics, under the title Morning and Evening Prayers. We hope this will render the Hebrew Catholic culture more readily accessible.

 

Some Notable Quotations To Guide Us

1 Catechism of the Catholic Church, 839

“When she delves into her own mystery, the Church, the People of God in the New Covenant, discovers her link with the Jewish People, the first to hear the Word of God. The Jewish faith, unlike other non-Christian religions, is already a response to God’s revelation in the Old Covenant. To the Jews ‘belong the sonship, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; to them belong the patriarchs, and of their race, according to the flesh, is in Christ,’ (Rom. 9: 4) for the gifts and call of God are irrevocable.”

2. Nostra Aetate, 4 — Pope Paul VI (1965)

“Thus the Church of Christ acknowledges that according to God’s saving design, the beginnings of her faith and her election are found already among the Patriarchs, Moses and the prophets. She professes that all who believe in Christ — Abraham’s sons according to faith — are included in the same Patriarch’s call, and likewise that the salvation of the Church is mysteriously foreshadowed by the chosen people’s exodus from the land of bondage.”

3. Eminent Theologian: Fr. Louis Bouyer

“Judeo-Christianity cannot be considered a transitory phase of abolished Christianity, forever surpassed by pagano-Christianity, which would have triumphed over it. The Christian synthesis must always be renewed by renewing its contact with the primary and, in a sense, definitive expression of the Gospel, in the categories and forms of Judaism.

“Judeo-Christianity, as Paul and Peter recognised and proclaimed, remains forever the mother form of Christianity, to which all other forms must always have recourse. It is therefore a weakness for the Church that Judeo-Christianity, from which it was born and from which it cannot free itself, no longer subsists in her except in tracings. It can be believed that she will not reach the ultimate stage of her development except by rediscovering it — fully living in her.”

(Quoted in: The Hebrew Catholic, #73, page 13.)

4. Cardinal Ratzinger, Now Pope Benedict XVI, “The Heritage of Abraham.”

….. it is evident that dialogue of us Christians with the Jews stands on a different level with regard to the dialogue with the other religions. The faith witnessed in the Bible of the Jews, the Old Testament of Christians, is for us — ‘not a different religion but the foundation of our own faith’.”

(Appeared in “L’Osservatore Romano,” 29.12.2000)

 

Our Position

 

It is time to act appropriately, under the guidance of the Holy See, with urgency, ardour and alacrity in this new era and seek the restoration within the Church of that from which the Church was born — a visible and dynamic Israelite Community.

(Modelled on David Moss’s article: The Association of Hebrew Catholics Proposal to Preserve the Jewish Witness, Hebrew Catholic # 77 pp.32 — 37.)

In this spirit, we wish to respond with appropriate ardour and urgency. A short quotation from Moshe Luzzatto will help us.

The Path of the Just — Moshe Chayim Luzzatto

(Feldheim Publishers, New York 5747, 1987.)

It is to be observed that all the deeds of the righteous are performed with alacrity. In relation to Abraham it is written (Genesis 18: 6), “And Abraham hastened to the tent, to Sarah, and he said, ‘Hasten …..’ and he gave it to the youth and he hastened.” And in relation to Rivkah (Ibid. 24: 20), “And she hastened and emptied her pitcher……” And in the Midrash (Bamidbar Rabbar 10: 17). ” ‘ And the woman made haste’ (Judges 13: 10), — this teaches us that all the deeds of the righteous are done quickly,” that they do not permit time to elapse before beginning them or in completing them.

The man whose soul burns in the service of his Creator will surely not idle in the performance of his mitzvoth, but his movements will be like the quick movements of a fire; he will not rest or be still until the deed has been completed. Furthermore, just as zeal can result from an inner burning so can it create one. That is, one who perceives a quickening of his movements in the performance of a mitzvah conditions himself to experience a flaming inner movement, through which longing and desire will continually grow. If, however, he is sluggish in the movement of his limbs, the movement of his spirit will die down and be extinguished.

It is known that what is most preferred in Divine service is desire of the heart and longing of the soul. And it is in relation to his goodly portion in this respect that David exulted (Psalms 42: 2), “As a hart yearns for the water-brooks, so does my soul yearn for You, O God……” “My soul thirsts for God…..” “My soul longs and goes out for the courts of God (Psalms 84: 3); “My soul thirsts for You; my flesh pines for You” (Psalms 63: 2). The man in whom this longing does not burn as it should would do well to bestir himself by force of will so that, as a result, this longing will spring up in his nature; for outer movements awaken inner ones. Unquestionably a person has more control of his outer than his inner self, but if he makes use of what he can control, he will acquire, in consequence, even that which is not within the province of his control. For as a result of the willed quickening of his movements, there will arise in him an inner joy and a desire and a longing. As the Prophet says (Hosea 6: 3), “And let us know — let us run to know God;” and (Hosea 11: 10), “After God will they go, who will roar like a lion.”

 

From the Talmud
Rabbi Pinchas ben Yair adduced:

Torah leads to Watchfulness;

Watchfulness leads to Zeal;

Zeal leads to Cleanliness;

Cleanliness leads to Separation ;

Separation leads to Purity;

Purity leads to Saintliness;

Saintliness leads to Humility;

Humility leads to Fear of Sin;

Fear of Sin leads to Holiness;

Holiness leads to the Holy Spirit and

The Holy Spirit leads to the Revival of the Dead

(From a Baraitha in the chapter, “Before the festivals,” — Avodah Zara 20b. — Emphasis added.)

 

Moshe Chayim Luzzatto
Concluding the introduction to his book “The Path of the Just”:

May God be with our aspirations and keep our feet from stumbling, and may there be fulfilled in us the supplication of the Psalmist, beloved of his God (Psalms 86: 11).

“Teach me, O God, Your ways; I shall walk in Your truth. Make one my heart to fear Your name.”

Amen, so may be His will.

 

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AHC — Association of Hebrew Catholics