Tomorrow marks the Third Sunday of Advent, known as Gaudete Sunday, and is one of two Rose Sundays in the liturgical year (the other being Laetare Sunday, during Lent). While Advent was traditionally a time of fasting and prayer in preparation for the celebration of the twelve days of the Christmas season, on Rose Sunday the fast was relaxed as a minor day of celebration and joy. As a symbol of this celebration, rose is the liturgical color for the day; and so rather than light a purple candle (a penitential color), we light the single rose colored candle on the Advent wreath in joyous anticipation of the coming of the Christ on Christmas Day.
Intent: Recognition of the Messenger
Pray: In the name of the + Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
℣. O Emmanuel, Christ, desire of all people, come and dwell within our hearts. Fill us with Thy joy.
Let us pray. Christ, our Light, come to us, and take us unto Thee! We have trusted to the knowledge of Thy hope, which called us unto Thee; take us up to Thine abode, O Celestial Spouse! We are trees in the orchard of Thy Light; our Light shines like the sun; for we have lit it with Thy fire, and nourished it with the good oil of purity. O Thou who art our eternal saving power, cleanse us in Thy waters, that we may become divine again, as we once were. And come to us, O Thou dearly awaited One, come to those who await Thee today, and forever.
The first and second purple candles, and the rose candle are lit, and O Come Emmanuel may be sung, followed by a time of personal meditation on the Recognition of the Messenger.
A reading from the Holy Prophet Mani: The Messenger of Light, who comes at the right time and assumes the form of the true church and human flesh, and acts as leader within righteousness, chooses the personalities of his disciples and then frees them, both those of the Elect and those of the Hearers; he dives down into the deep oceans of the waters of the world, and draws them out from the jaws of the deep. And they do not stray again, but after other rebirths and toil for the Light, they come to the hands of the Angels; and the Angels carry them to the places where they shall be refined as pure gold.
Alleluia, alleluia. Excita, Domine, potentiam tuam, et veni ut salvos facias nos. Alleluia.
(Alleluia, alleluia. Stir up, O Lord, Thy might, and come to save us. Alleluia.)