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THE ROSICRUCIAN FELLOWSHIP

 

HOLY NIGHT SERVICE

 

 

Music: Third verse of Opening Hymn sung by congregation.

Reader unveils Emblem and gives greeting:“My dear Sisters and Brothers, May the Roses bloom upon your Cross.”   (Response:“And upon yours also.”)

 

Once more in the course of a year we are upon the eve of Christmas, the most vital event for all humanity. To commemorate this night par excellence of the year let us read the story of the Annunciation and the Birth as told in the first chapter of Luke and the second chapter of Matthew in our Holy Bible, given to us by the Recording Angels.

 

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        “And the angel Gabriel was sent from God, unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin´s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said:“Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.” And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her:“Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found favor with God. And behold thou shalt bring forth a son, and shall call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David. And he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”

        Then said Mary unto the angel:“How shall this be?” And the angel answered and said unto her:”The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee; therefore also this Holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.”

(Luke 1,26-36)

 

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         “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea, in the days of Herod the King, behold, there came came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, saying:”Where is he that is born King of the Jews? - for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.”  When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born. And they said unto him, in Bethlehem of Judaea, fur thus it is written by the prophets:And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not least among the princes of Juda for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people in Israel.

 

 

Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, inquired of them diligently what time the star appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem and said:”Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.” When they had heard the King, they departed; and lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

        When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him; and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed unto their own country another way.”(Matthew 2,1 -2,12)

 

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        We learn from the Teachings of the Brothers of the Rose Cross that the summer and winter solstices, together with the vernal and fall equinoxes, form turning points in the life of the Great Earth Spirit, a Ray of the Cosmic Christ who came to enable humanity to supersede law with love. He took the dense and vital bodies of Jesus that he might appear as a man among men and demonstrate that only from within is it possible to conquer the separative race-religions and establish Universal Brotherhood.

 

        In September there is a change in the Earth´s atmosphere; a light begins to glow in the heavens and to pervade the whole solar universe. Gradually it grows more intense and envelops our entire globe. Then it penetrates the surface of our planet and slowly concentrates itself in the center of the Earth. On Holy Night, when the zodiacal sign of the immaculate celestial Virgin stands upon the eastern horizon, this light attains its minimum size and maximum power and brilliancy. Then the concentrated light begins to radiate and gives new life to the Earth wherewith to carry on the activities of Nature during the coming year. This is the beginning of the great cosmic drama which is enacted annually during the winter months.

 

        Thus Christmas is not merely a commemoration of the birth of our beloved Elder Brother, Jesus of Nazareth, but the advent of the rejuvenating love-life of our heavenly Father, sent by Him to redeem the world from the wintry death grip. Without this new infusion of divine life and energy we would soon perish physically, and our orderly progress would be frustrated so far as our present lines of development are concerned.

        It is now that the Earth is nearest the Sun. The spiritual rays fall at right angles to the Earth´s surface in the Northern Hemisphere, promoting spirituality, while physical activities are held in abeyance on account of the oblique angle at which the solar rays strike the surface of the Earth. On this principle the physical activities are at their lowest ebb and the spiritual forces reach their highest tidal flow on the night between the 24th and 25th of December, which is therefore the most “holy night” of the year.

However, it must not be forgotten that the birth of Christ upon Earth is the death of Christ to the glory of heaven; that at the time we rejoice at His annual coming, He is invested again with the heavy physical load which we have crystallized about ourselves and which is now our dwelling place — the Earth. In this heavy body He is encrusted, and anxiously He waits for the day of permanent liberation.

 

        What then should be the goal of the devout and enlightened aspirant who realizes the greatness of His sacrifice, the greatness of this gift which is being bestowed upon mankind by God at this time of the year; who realizes this sacrifice of the Christ for our sake, thus subjecting Himself to a virtual death that we may live. His wonderful love is being poured out upon the Earth at this time. The devout person´s aspiration can be to imitate in however small a measure the wonderful works of God! He should aspire to make himself more the servant of the Cross than ever before, more closely to follow the Christ in everything by sacrificing himself for his sisters and brothers, by uplifting humanity within his immediate sphere of work so as to hasten the final liberation. If we sincerely work in our own sphere, no matter where it may be, then we shall find that wonderful soul growth may be attained; and all may see that Christmas light, the light of the newborn Christ, shining within our sphere of action.

 

        Spiritual vibrations are strongest at midnight on Holy Night. On this night it is easiest to achieve conscious contact with the spiritual Sun, and retrospection and resulting resolutions for the new year are most effective.

Let us all unite our concentrated spiritual effort of aspiration and pray for individual and collective soul growth for a spiritually productive year. My dear Sisters and Brothers, let us strive during the coming year to attain a greater measure of Christ-likeness than we have ever before attained. May we live such lives that when another year has passed and we again see the light of Christmas and hear the bells that call us to the Holy Night Service, we shall then feel that our lives have been fruitful in the service of the Christ.

 

Let us, on the Holiest Night of the year, concentrate on:

 

        SPIRITUAL BIRTH THROUGH SERVING THE CHRIST.

 

Concentration period – broken by music. Reader closes curtain and gives Parting Admonition:

 

PARTING ADMONITION:

        Now let us all go to our own rooms, speaking only that which may be necessary, and there meditate upon these things, consecrating our lives anew, forming resolutions for a spiritually productive new year so that day by day we may, as individuals and as a Fellowship, become more worthy to be used as self-conscious channels for the beneficial workings of the Elder Brothers in the service of humanity.

 

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