In The Reason for the Season we give you some insight into why we Catholics do the things we do at different points during the liturgical year (e.g. Christmas, Lent, Easter). We give some scriptural, historical and theological background, all with the aim of helping you participate more deeply in the mysteries of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Reason for the Season – The Advent Wreath

The Reason for the Season – is a section on our website in which we, the student brothers of the Irish Province of Dominicans, will try to give a background to the seasons of the liturgical year (Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter) all with the aim of helping you to experience these times more richly, and ultimately to participate more deeply in the mysteries of Christ’s life. The video below is the first in this series and, in it, we attempt to explain the significance of the Advent Wreath. Watch this space for more articles and videos!

The music in this video is by Paul Tate (, and it is used with permission.


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Reason for the Season – The Easter Triduum

This episode of Reason for the Season focuses on the Triduum, from Holy Thursday till the Easter Vigil. It explains what and why we celebrate during this highlight of the liturgical year. 

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Light Amid a World of Shadows

What is it that we are looking for in this time of Advent and preparation for Christmas?

If we are looking for some new revelation that will fill in all the gaps in our understanding, or for a mystical experience lifting us up to the highest heavens…. we are likely to be disappointed.

The Scriptures and the Liturgy of the season make a good suggestion: seek the face of Christ (Psalm 27:8), the Lord who will be born in Bethlehem. It was there that, for the first time, the world could look on the face of its Lord, who had made himself a defenceless infant for our sake. Yet when we think about this, we may feel that we are looking into something beyond our understanding, and an example that is just too holy for us to imitate.

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Rorate Caeli


The Rorate Caeli is sung by choirs all over the world in the lead up to Christmas. It is not, however, a festive carol, or anything like it! It is a solemn, serious text, based on Old Testament prophecy and lament, and it expresses something far more true to human experience than the fluff and tinsel of ‘commercial Christmas’. The birth of Jesus is presented in the Rorate, not as something merely cute and sentimental, but as the answer to the real cry of our hearts.

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Prophecy in Advent

Advent is a time of waiting, of expectation, when we await the arrival of the incarnate Word of God – Jesus, into the world. In doing this, we are re-living the experience of the people of Israel in the Old Testament, who awaited the arrival of the Messiah. In fact, the entire Old Testament has been called a prolonged advent, waiting for the arrival of Him who was promised by “those who were his prophets from of old”.

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