Reparation for Priests and Bishops

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J.M.J

“Between the porch and the altar the priests the Lord’s ministers, shall weep, and shall say: Spare, O Lord, spare thy people: and give not thy inheritance to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them.” – Joel 2:17

Every priest who recites the traditional breviary reads these words each night at Vespers on the ferias of Lent. It is a sobering reminder to each priest of one of his most essential duties, namely, to be an intermediary, and intercessor between God and the people. The priest is deputed by God, to offer prayer and sacrifice for the benefit of the living and the dead and thereby plead for the remission of their sins. “Between God and man the priest stands, by communicating to us God’s benefits, and by offering Him our petitions; he reconciles the angry Lord, and wards from us the blows of his justice” (St. John Chrysostom). By his prayers, his labors, his sacrifices, and most especially by offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the priest cooperates with Almighty God in His greatest work, the work of the salvation of souls. St. Thomas says, “The good of grace in one is greater than the good of nature in the whole universe” (S.T. Ia-IIae 113 Art. 9). Through each Mass he offers, each sacrament he administers, along with all of his other prayers, sufferings and apostolic labors he offers in union with his daily Mass, the priest acts as a conduit pouring into the souls of men the greatest gift God has to offer: the graces Our Lord Jesus Christ won for us all on the cross. Therefore, St. Paul says of priests, “We are God’s coadjutors.” 1 Corinthians 3:9.

In order to effectively fulfill their role as intermediaries on behalf of the people in the sight of God, priests must be holy. “Those that are mediators between God and the people must shine before God with a good conscience, and with a good reputation before men” (St. Thomas Aquinas). St.  Gregory Nazianzen says, “The priest must first be cleansed before he can cleanse others; he must first himself approach God before he can lead others to him; he must first sanctify himself before he can sanctify others; he must first be himself a light before he can illumine others.” Holiness, sanctity, that perfect union of the soul with God, is not a luxury of priestly life, it is one of its most basic necessities.  As St. Thomas Aquinas teaches, “In order to exercise this office (of the priesthood) in a worthy manner, interior perfection is required.”

Yet, how far from this most basic requirement has the state of the priesthood fallen, especially in recent years! And not just among the rank-and-file priests but even within the highest levels of the clergy: bishops, cardinals and even the Pope himself. When the topic of clerical corruption is discussed, the clerical sex abuse scandal of the last 20 years most often takes center stage. The recent revelation of the scandals of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick has added new fuel to the fire. Yet, these horrifying sins against God and neighbor are just the tip of the iceberg of moral rot which is plaguing the Catholic priesthood.

Along with the sex abuse scandals there is a more foundational problem which has also become more apparent in recent years. That is the breakdown of supernatural faith and charity. Priests and bishops are called to be teachers of the Gospel of Christ, teaching by word and example the way to eternal life. Almighty God, through the words of St. Paul to Timothy, says to each priest and bishop, “I charge thee before God and Jesus Christ, who shall judge the living and the dead…preach the word, be instant in season, out of season: reprove, entreat rebuke in all patience and doctrine.” Sadly, many priests and bishops fall into the category of those mentioned by St. Paul in the same letter who “will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires…heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears” and “turn away their hearing from the truth” and are “turned unto fables.” (1Timothy 4:1-4). Instead of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the teachings of His Church, too many priests and bishops of our day preach a different gospel: they preach the gospel of divorce and remarriage, the devotion of frequent Holy Communion for public and manifest enemies of God and His Church, the promotion of the vocations of women priests, the blessing and support of homosexual marriage and family life, they even perform solemn idolatrous liturgy in the Vatican itself. All this in addition to a general spirit of religious indifferentism which suffocates the apostolic spirit which burned so brightly in the hearts of the great missionary saints of old. It is little wonder then why so many of our churches and Catholic schools, once full of parishioners and students, are now closed and abandoned.

These sins are not only grievous in themselves, but they also cause scandal and confusion among the faithful. St. Alphonsus Liguori, in his book, Dignities and Duties of the Priest, describes the seriousness of the sin of scandal among the clergy. He says, “The priest is called the salt of the earth and the light of the world. The office of salt is to preserve soundness and prevent putrefaction, and the office of the priest is to preserve souls in the grace of God. What, says St. Augustine, shall become of the people if the priest does not perform the office of salt. Then the saint proceeds to say, this salt shall be fit only to be cast away by the Church, and to be trodden by all. But what, if, instead of being a preservative, this salt be employed in producing and promoting corruption? If instead of bringing souls to God, a priest is occupied in leading them to perdition, what punishment shall he deserve?

“The priest is the light of the world. Hence, says St. John Chrysostom, he should shine with the splendor of his sanctity so as to enlighten all others to imitate his virtues. But should this light be changed into darkness, what must become of the world? Shall it not be brought to ruin? says St. Gregory…This is conformable to the words of the Prophet Osee: And there shall be like people like priest.”

It doesn’t take much reflection upon the current moral state of clergy, the Church and the culture to realize the sobering truth of these words written over 250 years ago. “What shall become of the people if the priest does not perform the office of salt…if instead of being a preservative, this salt be employed in producing and promoting corruption…if instead of bringing souls to God, a priest is occupied in leading them to perdition, what punishment shall he deserve?” “The priest is the light of the world…But should this light be changed into darkness, what must become of the world? Shall it not be brought to ruin?” “And there shall be like people, like priest.”

To make matters worse, these very priests and bishops who have perpetrated some of the most heinous crimes against God, are the very ones who, according to the Prophet Joel, are appointed by God to intercede on our behalf and offer sacrifice and reparation for the sins of mankind. “Between the porch and the altar the priests, the Lord’s ministers, shall weep, and shall say: Spare, O Lord, spare the people.” But if the very priests appointed by God to intercede for us and offer prayers, sacrifice, and reparation for sin are the same ones who are committing some of the most grievous sins against Him, how can proper reparation be made? St. Augustine said that the barking of dogs is more pleasing to God than the prayers of bad priests. How can a priest intercede on behalf of sinners when he himself is an enemy of God? Our Lady of Fatima said that many souls go to hell because no one is willing to offer prayers and sacrifices for sinners. How can sufficient reparation be offered to God to save the  souls of priests and bishops who have fallen from such a height and who are buried beneath the sins of  those who are lost because of them?

The first thing which must be done is that each and every priest and bishop reflect seriously upon his great responsibility for the salvation of souls. The priest is ordained for no other reason than the salvation of others and thereby will save his own soul. “For every high priest taken from among men, is ordained for men in the things that appertain to God.” (Hebrews 5:1). “He must know that he who causeth a sinner to be converted from the error of his way, shall save his soul from death and shall cover a multitude of sins.” (James 5:20). A priest’s salvation depends on the salvation of others. To do this well, the priest must not only be holy and devout, he must be a saint.

But the sad reality is that so many priests and bishops are anything but holy and devout. How can sufficient reparation possibly be made for their grievous sins?

The most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass wherein Our Lord’s Body and Blood is offered to God the Father through the ministry of the priest under the appearance of bread and wine, is the only means which can possibly expiate the outrages so many priests and bishops have committed against Our Lord’s Sacred Heart and Our Lady’s Immaculate and Sorrowful Heart. By the special application of Our Lord’s Precious Blood and the merits He won for us on the cross through the devout offering of Masses of reparation, the graces necessary will be applied, not only to expiate such crimes but also convert their perpetrators.

Therefore, I ask all priests and bishops of good will, to offer two Masses each month for the intention of reparation for the sins of their brother priests and bishops. One of these Masses will be in reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and the other will be in reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Lay faithful, I ask you to request your parish priests, and/or priests of religious orders to offer two Masses each month for this intention. Attend Mass twice each month and offer your attendance at Mass along with your Holy communion for these same intentions of reparation for the sins of priests and bishops to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. If all devout priests, bishops, and lay faithful alike were to take up this simple yet profound act of charity towards Our Lord, His Church, and His friends who have betrayed Him, Our Lord will be consoled, the Church will be restored, and many souls will be saved from eternal ruin.

Ascendancy (Church & State Issues) by Fr Ripperger

In light of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that states may restrict Church meetings and services based on COVID-19 concerns, the following article is reposted. Despite the centuries long mantra of separation of Church and state by civil authorities, it is clear that it is only a one way street. This article first appeared in the Latin Mass Magazine and has been edited for reposting.

To read the article please click here

Holy Week Schedule

As you all know there are a lot of on-line streaming going on and on the YouTube Channel we have 2 parishes streaming LIVE during the week (& beyond) & they are doing the pre-1955 rubrics

I will post the times and links to support each parish who is contributing.

St Joan of Arc, FSSP website here

Palm Sunday Mass pre 1955 here

Daily Mass streaming regular hours

Holy Thursday at 6:30pm PST

Good Friday at 3pm PST

Holy Saturday Vigil at 7:30pm PST

Tenebrae 6:30am PST (Thursday, Friday, & Saturday)

Holy Week Liturgies Sources

THE MASS EXPLAINED

Our Lady of Mt Carmel, FSSP

online donations page here

Palm Sunday pre-1955 here

Holy Thursday at 7pm MST

Good Friday at 3pm MST

Easter Vigil at 6:00pm MST

Easter Sunday at 10:30am MST

Tenebrae

Holy Thursday Tenebrae is on WEDNESDAY evening at 7:00pm.

Good Friday Tenebrae is on MAUNDY THURSDAY evening at 9:00pm.

And Holy Saturday Tenebrae is on GOOD FRIDAY evening at 7:00pm.

 

St. Mary’s Oratory (website here)

 

 

A Brief Comparison of the Traditional Roman & Pian Holy Week Ceremonies

A BRIEF COMPARISON

OF THE Traditional Roman & Pian HOLY WEEK CEREMONIES

From the Latin Mass Society Australia – www.lmsaus.org

“The beginning of this renewal was the work of Our predecessor … Pius XII, in the restoration of the Paschal Vigil and of the Holy Week Rite, which formed the first stage of updating the Roman Missal for the present-day mentality.” (Pope Paul VI, Missale Romanum, April 3rd 1969)

PALM SUNDAY

Traditional Holy Week

1.Violet vestments for Procession.

2.Folded chasuble and broad stole used.

3.An Epistle, Gradual, Gospel, Preface and Sanctus are sung. Palms are blessed on the Epistle side of the altar. This rite is commonly called the “Missa sicca”.

4.Blessing of palms speaks of the power of sacramentals against the demonic.

5.Processional Cross is veiled.

6.Two cantors go into the Church & sing the chorus of Gloria Laus, facing closed doors, repeated by those outside. The cantors then sing each verse, those outside sing the chorus. The Subdeacon then bangs the door thrice with the foot of the Processional Cross and all enter.

7.Procession ends as normal, Mass commences with the prayers at the foot of the altar.

8.Passion is distinct from the Gospel, which is sung by the deacon of the Mass.

9.Passion begins with the Institution of the Eucharist (Matt 26:1-35).

Pian Reform

1.Red vestments for Procession.

2.Both are suppressed.

3.The Epistle, Gradual, Preface and Sanctus are no longer sung. Blessing of palms takes place on a table, facing the people.

4.These prayers are suppressed.

5.Processional Cross is unveiled.

6.Doors are eft open. Gloria Laus is one of many processional chants.

7.Procession ends with a new prayer facing the people. The prayers at the foot of the altar are suppressed.

8.No proper Gospel.

9.Matt 26:1-35 is suppressed.

HOLY MONDAY

Traditional Holy Week

The prayers “Against the Church’s persecutors” and “for the Pope” are said

Pian Reform

Both prayers are suppressed.

 

HOLY TUESDAY

Traditional Holy Week

Passion begins with the Institution of the Eucharist (Mark 14: 1-31).

Pian Reform

Mark 14: 1-31 is suppressed.

 

HOLY WEDNESDAY

Traditional Holy Week

Passion begins with the Institution of the Eucharist (Luke 22: 1-39).

Pian Reform

Luke 22: 1-39 is suppressed.

 

HOLY THURSDAY

Traditional Holy Week

1.Priests and deacons in choir wear the usual choir dress and put on a stole for Communion.

2.Communion is given with hosts consecrated at any Mass.

3.The washing of feet is a separate ceremony outside of Mass and not done in the sanctuary.

4.A second host is consecrated, to be consumed by the priest on Good Friday. This host is placed in the chalice and brought to the altar of Repose.

5.The Confiteor is recited before Holy Communion.

6.The veiled cross remains on the altar, accompanied by two candlesticks.

7.Vespers is sung after Mass.

Pian Reform

1.Introduction of the stole as part of the choir dress of priests.

2.Communion is given with hosts consecrated on Holy Thursday.

3.The washing of feet is allowed to be inserted into Mass after the homily.

4.There is no second host. The priest and laity receive from the ciborium on Good Friday.

5.Confiteor is suppressed.

6.The cross and candlesticks are removed during the stripping of the altar.

7.Those who attend the liturgy today are dispensed from Vespers.

 

GOOD FRIDAY

Traditional Holy Week

1.Name: “Mass of the Presanctified” or “Feria Sexta in Parasceve”.

2.Crucifix and candlesticks are on the altar.

3.The priest, wearing a black chasuble, prostrates. The servers spread a single cloth on the bare altar.

4.The Gospel is distinct from the Passion.

5.Seventh Solemn Oration titled: “For Heretics and Schismatics”.

6.No kneeling at the prayer for the Jews.

7.The crucifix is taken down from the altar and laid on a purple cloth between the bottom step of the altar and the ground to be venerated by the ministers and clergy.

8.The Blessed Sacrament returns in a procession of equal solemnity to that of Holy Thursday. The celebrant brings It back whilst the Vexilla Regis is sung.

9.The Host is incensed.

10. The Orate Fratres is recited without the usual response.

11. The Our Father is recited by the priest alone.

12. A fraction of the Host is placed in the wine. The prayer for consuming the Precious Blood is omitted.

13. Holy Communion is not given.

14. Vespers is sung after Mass.

Pian Reform

1.Name: “Solemn Liturgical Action”.

2.The altar is completely bare.

3.The priest, wearing only the alb and stole, prostrates. The altar is not dressed until Communion time.

4.The distinct Gospel is suppressed.

5.Seventh Solemn Oration changed to: “For the Unity of the Church”.

6.Kneeling at the prayer for the Jews.

7.A procession of the crucifix from the sacristy is created. It is then held by two acolytes on the top step of the altar to be venerated by the ministers and clergy.

8.The importance of the Eucharistic procession is downplayed (along with references to Mass). The Vexilla Regis is suppressed.

9.Incensing the Host is suppressed.

10. Prayers that make reference to sacrifice are suppressed.

11. The Our Father is recited by the priest and people.

12. Placing a fraction of the Host into the wine is suppressed.

13. Holy Communion is given.

14. Those who attend the liturgy today are dispensed from Vespers.

HOLY SATURDAY

Traditional Holy Week

1.The fire is started using flint.

2.The fire and the grains of incense are blessed outside the church. The fire is passed to the tricereo (three candles).

3.The Candle remains unlit on its stand, always on the Gospel side.

4. The Exsultet begins whilst the Candle is unlit, grains of incense are fixed into the Candle, it is then lit by the deacon.

5. Twelve Lessons are sung.

6. The Litany is sung after the blessing of the baptismal water, before Mass.

7. The baptismal water is blessed at the font in the Baptistry. Catechumens are received at the entrance of the church, baptised and then enter into the nave.

8. Does not exist.

9. Does not exist.

10. Mass begins with the prayers at the foot of the altar.

11. Mass ends with a contracted form of Vespers.

Pian Reform

1.The fire is lit before the ceremony starts.

2.A blessing of the Candle is introduced. The Candle is held and carried by the deacon for the first part of the ceremony.

3.At each Lumen Christi all genuflect toward the Candle. It is then placed in the center of the sanctuary.

4.The symbolism of the Exsultet is stripped away and its fundamental nature as a diaconal blessing is distorted.

5.Four Lessons are sung.

6.The Litany is divided into two parts, the baptismal water is blessed in the middle of the Litany.

7.Introduction of placing the baptismal water in a basin in the middle of the sanctuary, the celebrant faces the people throughout the blessing.

8.Creation of the ‘Renewal of Baptismal Promises’.

9.Introduction of the Our Father recited by everyone present, often recited in the vernacular.

10.Prayers at the foot of the altar are suppressed.

11.Mass ends with a contracted form of Lauds.

NB. The reform changed the Vigil from one wrong time to another. The Vigil starts with a fire lighting ceremony, this is done when the fire is going down, not when it has been down for several hours.

For more info please visit Pre-1955 HOLY WEEK RESOURCES

1997 Letter From a Priest to His Parish About Returning the Tabernacle to its Rightful Place

Here is an excerpt from the book “Ugly as Sin” by Michael Rose.

In 1997 Fr. Richard Simon of St. Thomas of Canterbury Church in Chicago announced to his parish that he planned to make such a liturgical move because he felt that the experiment of removing the tabernacle from the sanctuary had failed. In his June 24, 1997 letter to his parishioners he wrote:

“I believe much of the liturgical experimentation that began more thirty years ago has failed. We are not holier, nor more Christ-centered now than we were then. In fact, we are facing a generation of young people who are largely lost to the Church because we have not given them the precious gift that is at the heart of Catholicism, that is, the Real Presence of Jesus. Mass has become simply a drama, a vehicle for whatever agenda is currently popular. The church building is no longer a place of encounter with the Lord but a sort of social center, not a place of prayer, rather a place of chatter.

In many churches, including our own, the tabernacle was moved from the center of the church to add emphasis to Mass and the presence of the Lord in the reception of Holy Communion. That experiment, however, has failed. We have lost the sense of the sacred that formerly was the hallmark of Catholic worship. The behavior of many in the church is outrageous. When Mass is over it is simply impossible to spend time in prayer. The noise level reaches the pitch that one would expect at a sporting event. The kiss of peace seems like New Year’s Eve. Christ is forgotten on the altar. You may counter that He is present in the gathering of the Church, and though this is true, it should not detract from the Lord present on the altar. If the Lord is truly recognized in the congregation, it should serve to enhance the sacredness of the moment. This simply is not happening….

Therefore, I have decided to restore the tabernacle to its former place in the middle of the sanctuary and to begin a campaign of re-education as to the sacredness of worship and the meaning of the Real Presence. This means that I will nag and nag until a sense of the sacred is restored. I will be reminding you that a respectful quiet will have to be maintained in church. Food and toys and socializing are welcome elsewhere, but the church is the place of an encounter with the Living God. It will not be a popular policy, but this is unimportant.

I can hear one objection already. Where will the priest sit? I will sit where the priest has traditionally sat, over on the side of the sanctuary. Here as in many churches the “presider’s” chair was placed where the tabernacle had been. I am sick of sitting on the throne that should belong to my Lord. The dethronement of the Blessed Sacrament has resulted in the enthronement of the clergy, and I for one am sick of it. The Mass has become priest-centered. The celebrant is everything. I am a sinner saved by grace as you are and not the center of the Eucharist. Let me resume my rightful place before the Lord rather than instead of the Lord. I am ordained to the priesthood of Christ in the order of presbyter, and as such I do have a special and humbling role. I am elder brother in the Lord and with you I seek to follow Him and to worship. Please, please let me return to Christ to the center of our life together where He belongs.”

Once Fr. Simon returned the tabernacle to its former location at the center of the sanctuary behind the altar, he was surprised, he said, at the response. It was overwhelming positive and effective.

Eucharistic Clergy Retreat at Douai Abbey 2019 with Fr Armand de Malleray, FSSP

The book on the Eucharist that Fr has authored can be purchased here (for Asia, Europe, Africa, and Australia) & here for North & South American buyers

Marian Clergy Retreat at Douai Abbey with Fr Armand de Malleray, FSSP

For more conferences of Fr De Malleray’s please click here

Fr’s new book on the holy Eucharist here (for Europe, Asia, Africa, & Australia orders) & here for North & South America orders

Novena in Honor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel (Beginning July 7)

Novena in Honor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

(Beginning July 7)

July 7

O beautiful Flower of Carmel, most fruitful vine, splendor of heaven, holy and singular, who brought forth the Son of God, still ever remaining a pure virgin, assist us in our necessity! O Star of the Sea, help and protect us! Show us that you are our Mother! (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 8

Most Holy Mary, Our Mother, in your great love for us you gave us the Holy Scapular of Mount Carmel, having heard the prayers of your chosen son Saint Simon Stock. Help us now to wear it faithfully and with devotion. May it be a sign to us of our desire to grow in holiness. (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 9

O Queen of Heaven, you gave us the Scapular as an outward sign by which we might be known as your faithful children. May we always wear it with honor by avoiding sin and imitating your virtues. Help us to be faithful to this desire of ours. (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 10

When you gave us, gracious Lady, the Scapular as our Habit, you called us to be not only servants, but also your own children. We ask you to gain for us from your Son the grace to live as your children in joy, peace, and love. (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 11

O Mother of Fair Love, through your goodness, as your children, we are called to live in the spirit of Carmel. Help us to live in charity with one another, prayerful as Elijah of old, and mindful of our call to minister to God’s people. (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 12

With loving provident care, O Mother Most Amiable, you covered us with your Scapular as a shield of defense against the Evil One. Through your assistance, may we bravely struggle against the powers of evil, always open to your Son Jesus Christ. (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 13

O Mary , Help of Christians, you assured us that wearing your Scapular worthily would keep us safe from harm. Protect us in both body and soul with your continual aid. May all that we do be pleasing to your Son and to you. (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 14

You give us hope, O Mother of Mercy, that through your Scapular promise we might quickly pass through the fires of Purgatory to the Kingdom of your Son. Be our comfort and our hope. Grant that our hope may not be in vain but that, ever faithful to your Son and to you, we may speedily enjoy after death the blessed company of Jesus and the saints. (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

July 15

O most Holy Mother of Mount Carmel, when asked by a saint to grant privileges to the family of Carmel, you gave assurance of your Motherly love and help to those faithful to you and to your Son. Behold us, your children. We glory in wearing your holy habit, which makes us members of your family of Carmel, through which we shall have your powerful protection in life, at death, and even after death. Look down with love, O Gate of Heaven, on all those now in their last agony! Look down graciously, O Virgin, Flower of Carmel, on all those in need of help! Look down mercifully, O Mother of our Savior, on all those who do not know that they are numbered among your children. Look down tenderly, O Queen of All Saints, on the poor souls! (Here make your intentions in silence.)

Pater, Ave, and Gloria Patri.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

Magisterial Authority & the Binding Force of Tradition ~ Fr Ripperger

Here are a series of lectures that Fr Ripperger gave a few years ago & I’ve included the books that go with these lectures as well.  These are must haves for today’s confusing times.

Today, much confusion is created when a current Pope appears to contradict an earlier Pope, council, or whatever magisterial act you like, and to make things worse, there are plenty of yes men who will tell you that you are nuts for seeing the obvious contradiction in papal statements. How can this be? Have the gates of hell prevailed?

In this reprint of several articles originally appearing in Christian Order, Fr. Ripperger helps us to understand the theological principles and the limits of magisterial authority, as well as what one ought to do when Popes contradict each other. This little book is a must read for anyone concerned about events today.

 

The average faithful of a conservative or traditional mind, who has the goal of recouping and restoring the tradition of the Church not only in liturgy or in devotion but also in theology, often feels assaulted on all fronts by theologians and clergy who have forgotten that Jesus Christ is pre-Vatican II. Yet most books written by and for traditionalists on current miscellanea address effects of the problems in the Church today, or various facets of the problems around liturgy, doctrine, ecumenism and the like. None of the works out there go back to the very core of the problem, they do state the effects, namely the prior magisterium universally taught “x”, but today clergy, prelates and even members of the magisterium at least appear to be saying the opposite. The real question is what is the “Tradition”, and what principles have been deviated from that we should see the crisis in the Church not only unfold but continue?

On Divine Tradition is one of the most important theological texts dealing with the notion of Tradition in the Church. Unlike other authors who wrote very well on the subject but tailored it to the issues of their day, such as Melchior Cano and St. Robert Bellarmine, Cardinal Franzelin wrote a treatise considering tradition in itself, and then applied the fruit of this discussion to refute the Protestant notion that Tradition is opposed to Scripture.

 

 

PASSION SUNDAY ~ Dom Prosper Gueranger

PASSION SUNDAY

Hodie, si vocem Domini audieritis, nolite obdurare corda vestra. To-day if you shall hear the voice of the Lord, harden not  your hearts.

The holy Church begins her night Office of this Sunday with these impressive words of the royal prophet. Formerly, the faithful considered it their duty to assist at the night Office, at least on Sundays and feasts; they would have grieved to lose the grand teachings given by the liturgy. Such fervour has long since died out; the assiduity at the Offices of the Church, which was the joy of our Catholic forefathers, has now become a thing of the past; and even in countries which have not apostatized from the faith, the clergy have ceased to celebrate publicly Offices at which no one assisted. Excepting in cathedral churches and in monasteries, the grand harmonious system of the divine praise has been abandoned, and the marvellous power of the liturgy has no longer its full influence upon the faithful.

This is our reason for drawing the attention of our readers to certain beauties of the Divine Office, which would otherwise be totally ignored. Thus, what can be more impressive than this solemn Invitatory of to-day’s Matins, which the Church takes from one of the psalms, and which she repeats on every feria between this and Maundy Thursday? She says; To-day, if ye will hear the voice of the Lord, harden not your hearts! The sweet voice of your suffering Jesus now speaks to you, poor sinners! be not your own enemies by indifference and hardness of heart. The Son of God is about to give you the last and greatest proof of the love that brought Him down from heaven; His death is nigh at hand: men are preparing the wood for the immolation of the new Isaac: enter into yourselves, and let not your hearts, after being touched with grace, return to their former obduracy; for nothing could be more dangerous. The great anniversaries we are to celebrate have a renovating power for those souls that faithfully correspond with the grace which is offered them; but they increase insensibility in those who let them pass without working their conversion. To-day, therefore, if you hear the voice of the Lord, harden not your hearts!

During the preceding four weeks, we have noticed how the malice of Jesus’ enemies has been gradually increasing. His very presence irritates them; and it is evident that any little circumstance will suffice to bring the deep and long-nurtured hatred to a head. The kind and gentle manners of Jesus are drawing to Him all hearts that are simple and upright; at the same time, the humble life He leads, and the stern purity of His doctrines, are perpetual sources of vexation and anger, both to the proud Jew that looks forward to the Messias being a mighty conqueror, and to the pharisee, who corrupts the Law of God, that he may make it the instrument of his own base passions. Still, Jesus goes on working miracles; His discourses are more than ever energetic; His prophecies foretell the fall of Jerusalem, and such a destruction of its famous temple, that not a stone is to be left on a stone. The doctors of the Law should, at least, reflect upon what they hear; they should examine these wonderful works, which render such strong testimony in favour of the Son of David; and they should consult these divine prophecies which, up to the present time, have been so literally fulfilled in His person. Alas! they themselves are about to carry them out to the very last iota. There is not a single outrage or suffering foretold by David and Isaias, as having to be put upon the Messias, which these blind men are not scheming to verify.

In them, therefore, was fulfilled that terrible saying: ‘He that shall speak against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, nor in the world to come.’ [St. Matt. xii. 32.] The Synagogue is nigh to a curse. Obstinate in her error, she refuses to see or to hear; she has deliberately perverted her judgment: she has extinguished within herself the light of the holy Spirit; she will go deeper and deeper into evil, and at length fall into the abyss. This same lamentable conduct is but too often witnessed nowadays in those sinners, who, by habitual resistance to the light, end by finding their happiness in sin. Neither should it surprise us, that we find in people of our own generation a resemblance to the murderers of our Jesus: the history of His Passion will reveal to us many sad secrets of the human heart and its perverse inclinations; for what happened in Jerusalem, happens also in every sinner’s heart. His heart, according to the saying of St. Paul, is a Calvary, where Jesus is crucified. There is the same ingratitude, the same blindness, the same wild madness, with this difference: that the sinner who is enlightened by faith, knows Him whom he crucifies; whereas the Jews, as the same apostle tells us, knew not the Lord of glory [1 Cor. ii. 8.] Whilst, therefore, we listen to the Gospel, which relates the history of the Passion, let us turn the indignation which we feel for the Jews against ourselves and our own sins; let us weep over the sufferings of our Victim, for our sins caused Him to suffer and die.

Everything around us urges us to mourn. The images of the saints, the very crucifix on our altar, are veiled from our sight. The Church is oppressed with grief. During the first four weeks of Lent, she compassionated her Jesus fasting in the desert; His coming sufferings and crucifixion and death are what now fill her with anguish. We read in to-day’s Gospel, that the Jews threaten to stone the Son of God as a blasphemer: but His hour is not yet come. He is obliged to flee and hide Himself. It is to express this deep humiliation, that the Church veils the cross. A God hiding Himself, that He may evade the anger of men – what a mystery! Is it weakness? Is it, that He fears death? No; we shall soon see Him going out to meet His enemies: but at present He hides Himself from them, because all that had been prophesied regarding Him has not been fulfilled. Besides, His death is not to be by stoning: He is to die upon a cross, the tree of malediction, which, from that time forward, is to be the tree of life. Let us humble ourselves, as we see the Creator of heaven and earth thus obliged to hide Himself from men, who are bent on His destruction! Let us go back, in thought, to the sad day of the first sin, when Adam and Eve bid themselves because a guilty conscience told them they were naked. Jesus has come to assure us of our being pardoned, and lo! He hides Himself, not because He is naked – He that is to the saints the garb of holiness and immortality – but because He made Himself weak, that He might make us strong. Our first parents sought to hide themselves from the sight of God; Jesus hides Himself from the eye of men. But it will not be thus for ever. The day will come when sinners, from whose anger He now flees, will pray to the mountains to fall on them and shield them from His gaze; but their prayer will not be granted, and they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven, with much power and majesty [St. Matt. xxiv. 30].

This Sunday is called Passion Sunday, because the Church begins, on this day, to make the sufferings of our Redeemer her chief thought. It is called also, Judica, from the first word of the Introit of the Mass; and again Neomania, that is, the Sunday of the new (or the Easter) moon, because it always falls after the new moon which regulates the feast of Easter.

In the Greek Church, this Sunday goes under the simple name of the fifth Sunday of the holy fast.


MASS

At Rome, the Station is in the basilica of St. Peter. The importance of this Sunday, which never gives way to any feast, no matter what its solemnity may be, required that the place for the assembly of the faithful should be in one of the chief sanctuaries of the holy city.

The Introit is taken from the first verses of Psalm xlii. The Messias appeals to God’s tribunal, and protests against the sentence about to be pronounced against Him by men. He likewise expresses his confidence in His Father’s help, who, after His sufferings and death, will lead Him in triumph into the holy mount.

INTROIT

Judica me, Deus, et discerne causam meam de gente non sancta: ab homine iniquo et doloso eripe me: quia tu es Deus meus, et fortitudo mea.
Ps. Emitte lucem tuam et veritatem tuam: ipsa me deduxerunt et adduxerunt in montem sanctum tuum, et in tabernaculum tuum. Judica me.
Judge me, O God, and distinguish my cause from the nation that is not holy; deliver me from the unjust and deceitful man: for thou art my God and my strength.
Ps. Send forth thy light and thy truth; for they have conducted me, and brought me to thy holy mount, and into thy tabernacles. Judge me, &c.

The Gloria Patri is not said during Passiontide and Holy Week (unless a saint’s feast be kept), but the Introit is repeated immediately after the Psalm.

In the Collect, the Church prays that there may be produced in her children that total reformation, which the holy season of Lent is intended to produce. This reformation is such, that it will not only subject the body to the spirit, but preserve also the spirit itself from those delusions and passions, to which it has been, hitherto, more or less a slave.

COLLECT

Quaesumus, omnipotens Deus, familiam tuam propitius respice: ut, te largente, regatur in corpore, et te servante, custodiatur in mente. Per Dominum. Mercifully look down on thy people, we beseech thee O almighty God, that by thy bounty and protection, they may be governed and guarded both in body and soul. Through, &c.

Then is added one of the following prayers

AGAINST THE PERSECUTORS OF’ THE CHURCH

Ecclesiae tuae, quaesumus, Domine, preces placatus admitte: ut destructis adversitatibus et erroribus universis, secura tibi serviat libertate. Per Dominum. Mercifully hear, we beseech thee, O Lord, the prayers of thy Church: that all oppositions and errors being removed, she may serve thee with a secure liberty. Through, etc.

FOR THE POPE

Deus, omnium fidelium Pastor et Rector, famulum tuum N., quem Pastorem Ecclesiae tuae praeesse voluisti, propitius respice: da ei, quaesumus, verbo et exemplo, quibus praeest, proficere; ut ad vitam, una cum grege sibi credi to, perveniat sempiternam. Per Dominum. O God, the Pastor and Ruler of all the faithful, look down, in thy mercy, on thy servant N., whom thou hast appointed Pastor over thy Church: and grant we beseech thee, that both by word and example, he may edify all those that are under his charge: and, with the flock entrusted to him, arrive at length at eternal happiness. Through, &c.

EPISTLE

Lectio Epistolae beati Pauli Apostoli ad Hebraeos.Cap. IX.
Fratres: Christus assistens Pontifex futurorum bonorum, per amplius et perfectius tabernaculum non manufactum, id est, non hujus creationis: neque per sanguinem hircorum aut vitulorum, sed per proprium Sanguinem introivit semel in Sancta, aeterna redemphone inventa. Si enim sanguis hircorum et taurorum, et cinis vitulae aspersus, inquinatos sanctificat ad emundationem carnis: quanto magis Sanguis Christi, qui per Spiritum sanctum semetipsum obtulit immaculatum Deo, emundabit conscientiam nostram ab operibus mortuis, ad serviendum Deo viventi? Et ideo novi Testamenti mediator est: ut morte intercedente, in redemptionem earum praevaricationum, quae erant sub priori Testamento, repromissionem accipiant, qui vocati sunt, aeternae haereditatis: in Christo Jesu Domino nostro.
Lesson of the Epistle of Saint Paul the Apostle to the Hebrews.Ch. IX.
Brethren: Christ being come, an High Priest of the good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation, neither by the blood of goats or of calves, but by his own Blood, entered once into the Holies, having obtained eternal redemption. For, if the blood of goats and of oxen, and the ashes of an heifer being sprinkled, sanctify such as are defiled, to the cleansing of the flesh: how much more shall the Blood of Christ (who by the Holy Ghost offered himself unspotted unto God), cleanse our conscience from dead works to serve the living God: And therefore, he is the mediator of the new Testament: that by means of his death, for the redemption of those transgressions which were under the former Testament, they that are called may receive the promise of eternal inheritance, in Christ Jesus our Lord.

It is by blood alone that man is to be redeemed. He has offended God. This God cannot be appeased by anything short of the extermination of His rebellious creature, who, by shedding his blood, will give an earnest of his repentance and his entire submission to the Creator, against whom he dared to rebel. Otherwise, the justice of God must be satisfied by the sinner’s suffering eternal punishment. This truth was understood by all the people of the ancient world, and all confessed it by shedding the blood of victims, as in the sacrifices of Abel at the very commencement of the world, in the hecatombs of Greece, in the countless immolations whereby Solomon dedicated the temple. And yet God thus speaks to His people: ‘Hear, O My people, and I will speak: O Israel, and I will testify to thee: I am God thy God. I will not reprove thee for thy sacrifices, and thy burnt-offerings are always in my sight. I will not take calves out of thy house, nor he-goats out of thy flocks. I need them not: for all the beasts of the woods are Mine. If I should be hungry I would not tell thee; for the world is Mine, and the fullness thereof. Shall I eat the flesh of bullocks? or shall I drink the blood of goats?’ [Ps. xlix. 7-13.] Thus, God commands the blood of victims to be offered to Him, and, at the same time, declares that neither it nor they are precious in His sight.

Is this a contradiction? No: God would hereby have man understand that it is only by blood that he can be redeemed, but that the blood of brute animals cannot effect this redemption. Can the blood of man himself bring him his own redemption, and appease God’s justice? No, not even man’s blood, for it is defiled; and even were it undefiled, it is powerless to compensate for the outrage done to God by sin. For this there was needed the Blood of a God; such was the Blood of Jesus, and He has come that He may shed it for our redemption.

In Him is fulfilled the most sacred of the figures of the old Law. Once each year, the high-priest entered into the Holy of holies, there to make intercession for the people. He went within the veil, even to the Ark of the Covenant; but he was not allowed to enjoy this great privilege, unless he entered the holy place carrying in his hands the blood of a newly-offered victim. The Son of God, the true High-Priest, is now about to enter heaven, and we are to follow Him thither; but unto this, He must have an offering of blood, and that Blood can be none other than His own. We are going to assist at this His compliance with the divine ordinance. Let us open our hearts, that this precious Blood may, as the apostle says in to-day’s Epistle, cleanse our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.

The Gradual is taken from the Psalms. Our Saviour here prays to be delivered from His enemies, and protected from the rage of them that have risen up against Him; yet is He ready to do the will of His Father, by whom He will be avenged.

In the Tract, which is also taken from the Psalms, the Messias, under the name of Israel, complains of the persecution He has met with from the Jews, even from His youth. They are now about to scourge Him in a most cruel manner. But He also foretells the punishment their deicide is to bring upon them.

GRADUAL

Eripe me, Domine, de inimicis meis: doce me facere voluntatem tuam.
V. Liberator meus, Domine, de gentibus iracundis: ab insurgentibus in me exaltabis me: a viro iniquo eripies me.
Deliver me, O Lord, from my enemies; teach me to do thy will.
V. Thou, O Lord, art my deliverer from the enraged Gentiles: thou wilt put me out of the reach of those that assault me; and thou wilt rescue me from the unrighteous man.

TRACT

Saepe expugnaverunt me a juventute mea.
V. Dicat nunc Israel; Saepe expugnaverunt me a juventute mea.
V. Etenim non potuerunt rnihi: supra dorsum meum fabricaverunt peccatores.
V. Prolongaverunt iniquitates suas: Dominus justus concidet cervices peccatorum.
Many a time have they fought against me from my youth.
V. Let Israel now say: They have often attacked me from my youth.
V. But they could not prevail over me: the wicked have wrought upon my back.
V. They have lengthened their iniquity: the Lord who is just, will cut the necks of sinners.

GOSPEL

Sequentia sancti Evangelii secundum Joannem.Cap. VIII.
In illo tempore: Dicebat Jesus turbis Judaeorum: Quis ex vobis arguet me de peccato? Si veritatem dico vobis, quare non creditis mihi? Qui ex Deo est, verba Dei audit. Propterea vos non auditis, quia ex Deo non estis. Responderunt ergo Judaei, et dixerunt ei: Nonne bene dicimus nos quia Samaritanus es tu, et daemonium habes? Respondit Jesus: Ego daemonium non habeo: sed honorifico Patrem meum, et vos inhonorastis me. Ego autem non quaero gloriam meam: est qui quaerit et judicet. Amen, amen dico vobis: Si quis sermonem meum servavaverit, mortem non videbit in aeternum. Dixerunt ergo Judaei: Nunc cognovimus quia daemonium habes. Abraham mortuus est, et prophetae: et tu dicis: Si quis sermonem meum servaverit, non gustabit mortem in aeter num. Numquid tu major es patre nostro Abraham, qui mortuus est? et prophetae mortui sunt. Quem teipsum facis? Respondit Jesus: Si ego glorifico meipsum, gloria mea nihil est: est Pater meus, qui glorificat me, quem vos dicitis quia Deus vester est, et non cognovistis eum; ego autem novi eum: et si dixero quia non scio eum, ero similis vobis mendax. Sed scio eum, et sermonem ejus servo. Abraham pater vester exsultavit ut videret diem meum: vidit, et gavisus est. Dixerunt ergo Judaei ad eum: Quinquaginta annos nondum habes, et Abraham vidisti? Dixit eis Jesus: Amen, amen, dico vobis, antequam Abraham fieret, ego sum. Tulerunt ergo lapides ut jacerent in eum: Jesus autem abscondit se, et exivit de templo.
Sequel of the holy Gospel, according to John.Ch. VIII.
At that time: Jesus said to the multitude of the Jews: Which of you shall convince me of sin? If I say the truth to you, why do you not believe me? He that is of God, heareth the words of God. Therefore you hear them not, because you are not of God. The Jews, therefore, answered and said to him; Do not we say well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil? Jesus answered: I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and you have dishonoured me. But I seek not my own Glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth. Amen, amen, I say to you: If any man keep my word, he shall not see death for ever. The Jews therefore said: Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets: and thou sayest: If my man keep my word, he shall not taste death for ever. Art thou greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Who dost thou make thyself? Jesus answered: If I glorify myself my glory is nothing. It is my Father that glorifieth me, of whom you say that he is your God; and you have not known him, but I know him. And if I shall say that I know him not, I shall be like to you, a liar. But I do know him, and do keep his word. Abraham your father rejoiced that he might see my day: he saw it, and was glad. The Jews therefore said to him: Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said to them: Amen, amen, I say to you, before Abraham was made, I am. They took up stones therefore to cast at him. But Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple.

The fury of the Jews is evidently at its height, and Jesus is obliged to hide Himself from them. But He is to fall into their hands before many days are over; then will they triumph and put Him to death. They triumph, and Jesus is their victim: but how different is to be His lot from theirs! In obedience to the decrees of His heavenly Father, and out of love for men, he will deliver Himself into the hands of His enemies, and they will put Him to death; but He will rise victorious from the tomb, He will ascend into heaven, He will be throned on the right hand of His Father. His enemies, on the contrary, after having vented all their rage, will live on without remorse, until the terrible day come for their chastisement. That day is not far off, for observe the severity wherewith our Lord speaks to them: ‘You hear not the words of God, because you are not of God.’ Yet there was a time when they were of God, for the Lord gives His grace to all men; but they have rendered this grace useless; they are now in darkness, and the light they have rejected will not return.

You say that My Father is your God, and you have not known Him; but I know Him. Their obstinacy in refusing to acknowledge Jesus as the Messias, has led these men to ignore that very God, whom they boast of honouring; for if they knew the Father, they would not reject His Son. Moses, and the Psalms, and the Prophets, are all a dead letter to them; these sacred Books are soon to pass into the hands of the Gentiles, who will both read and understand them. If, continues Jesus, I should say that I know Him not, I should be like to you, a liar. This strong language is that of the angry Judge who is to come down, at the last day, to destroy sinners. Jerusalem has not known the time of her visitation: the Son of God has visited her, He is with her, and she dares to say to Him: Thou hast a devil! She says to the eternal Word, who proves Himself to be God by the most astonishing miracles, that Abraham and the prophets are greater than He! Strange blindness, that comes from pride and hardness of heart! The feast of the Pasch is at hand; these men are going to eat, and with much parade of religion, the flesh of the figurative lamb; they know full well that this lamb is a symbol, or a figure, which is to have its fulfilment. The true Lamb is to be sacrificed by their hands, and they will not know Him. He will shed His Blood for them, and it will not save them. How this reminds us of those sinners, for whom this Easter promises to be as fruitless as those of the past years! Let us redouble our prayers for them, and beseech our Lord to soften their hearts, lest trampling the Blood of Jesus under their feet, they should have it to cry vengeance against them before the throne of the heavenly Father.

At the Offertory, confiding in the merits of the Blood that has redeemed us, let us, in the words of the Psalm, give praise to God, and proclaim Him to be the author of that new life, of which the sacrifice of the Lamb is the never-failing source.

OFFERTORY

Confitebor tibi, Domine, in toto corde meo: retribue servo tuo; vivam, et custodiam sermones tuos: vivifica me secundum verbum tuum, Domine. I will praise thee, O Lord, with my whole heart: reward thy servant: I shall live, and keep thy commandments: save me according to thy word, O Lord.

The Sacrifice of the spotless Lamb has produced two effects upon the sinner: it has broken his fetters, and has made him the object of God’s love. The Ohuroh prays, in the Secret, that the Sacrifice which she is about to offer, and which is one with that of the cross, may work the same results in us.

SECRETS

Haec munera, quaesumus, Domine, et vincula nostrae pravitatis absolvant, et tuae nobis misericordiae dona concilient. Per Dominum. May these offerings, O Lord, both loosen the bonds of our wickedness, and obtain for us the gifts of thy mercy. Through, &c.

AGAINST THE PERSECUTORS OF THE CHURCH

Protege nos, Domine, tuis mysteriis servientes: ut divinis rebus inhaerentes, et corpore tibi famulemur et mente. Per Dominum. Protect us, O Lord, while we assist at thy sacred mysteries: that being employed in acts of religion, we may serve thee both in body and mind. Through &c.

FOR THE POPE

Oblatis, quaesumus, Domine, placare muneribus: et famulum tuum N. quem Pastorem Ecclesiae tuae praeesse voluisti, assidua protectione guberna. Per Dominum. Be appeased, O Lord, with the offering we have made: and cease not to protect thy servant N.. whom thou hast been pleased to appoint Pastor over thy Church. Through, &c.

The Communion-antiphon is formed out of the very words spoken by Jesus, when instituting the august Sacrifice which has just been celebrated, and of which the priest and people have partaken, in memory of the Passion, for it renews both the remembrance and the merits of the Passion.

COMMUNION

Hoc corpus, quod pro vobis tradetur: hic calix novi testamenti est in meo sanguine, dicit Dominus: hoc facite, quotiesque sumitis, in meam commemorationem. This is the body which shall be delivered up for you; this is the cup of the new covenant in my blood, saith the Lord. As often as you receive them, do it in remembrance of me.

In the Postcommunion, the Church prays to God, that He would maintain in the faithful the fruits of the visit He has so graciously paid them; for, by their participation in the sacred mysteries, He has entered into them.

POSTCOMMUNIONS

Adesto nobis, Domine Deus noster: et, quos tuis mysteriis recreasti, perpetuis defende subsidiis. Per Dominum. Help us, O Lord our God, and for ever protect those whom thou hast refreshed with thy sacred mysteries. Through, &c.

AGAINST THE PERSECUTORS OF THE CHURCH

Quaesumus, Domine Deus noster: ut quos divina tribuis participatione gaudere, humanis non sinas subjacere periculis. Per Dominum. We beseech thee, O Lord our God, not to leave exposed to the dangers of human life, those whom thou hast permitted to partake of these divine mysteries. Through, &c.

FOR THE POPE

Haec nos quaesumus, Domine, divini Sacramenti perceptio protegat: et famulum tuum N. quem Pastorem Ecclesiae tuae praeesse voluisti, una cum commisso sibi grege salvet semper et muniat. Per Dominum. May the participation of this divine Sacrament protect us, we beseech thee, O Lord, and always procure safety and defence to thy servant N. whom thou hast appointed Pastor over the Church, together with the flock committed to his charge. Through &c.

 


VESPERS

The psalms and antiphons are given above.

CAPITULUM

(Heb. ix)

Fratres: Christus assistens Pontifex futurorum bonorum, per amplius et perfectius tabernaculum non manufactum, id est, non hujus creationis, neque per sanguinem hircorum, aut vitulorum, sed per proprium sanguinem, introivit semel in Sancta, aeterna redemptione inventa. Brethren: Christ being come as High Priest of the good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation, neither by the blood of goats or of calves, but by his own Blood, entered once into the Holies, having obtained eternal redemption.

For the hymn and versicle, see above.

ANTIPHON OF THE MAGNIFICAT

Abraham pater vester exsultavit ut videret diem meum: vidit et gavisus est. Abraham your father rejoiced that he might see my day: he saw it, and was glad.
OREMUS
Quaesumus, omnipotens Deus familiam tuam propitius respice: ut, te largiente, regatur in corpore, et, te servante, custodiatur in mente. Per Dominum.
LET US PRAY
Mercifully look down on thy people, we beseech thee, O almighty God, that by thy bounty and protection, they may be governed and guarded both in body and soul. Through, &c.

 


The following appropriate prayer is from the Mozarabic breviary.

CAPITULUM

Passionis tuae festum, Christe Dei Filius, devotis cordium officiis, recursu temporis inchoantes, quo pro nobis et linguas fuisti persequentium passus, et tradentium te vulneribus crucifixus; rogamus atque exposcimus ne te elonges a nobis: ut quia proximante tribulatione, non est qui adjuvet; tu solus Passionis tuae nos subleves ope: ne tradas ergo nos inimicis nostris in malum, sed excipe servos tuos in bonum: ut nos calumniantes superbi, inimici scilicet animarum nostrarum, virtutis tam potentia propellantur; tu es enim divina lucerna per humanitatem super candelabrum crucis imposita; ideo te rogamus, ut nos accendas, ne veniamus in poenam. Quos ergo perspicis initiatum Passionis tuae festum devotis cordibus excepisse, facito eos Passioni tuae communicare: ut tenebrarum nostrarum errore discusso, lucis tuae muniamur praesidio. The course of the year has brought us to the time for celebrating, with devout hearts and offices, the feast of thy Passion, O Jesus, Son of God! wherein, for our sake, thou didst suffer the calumnies of thine enemies, and wast crucified by the wounds of them that betrayed thee. We pray and beseech thee, that thou depart not from us: and whereas tribulation is nigh at hand, and there is none to help us, do thou, by the help of thy Passion, become our sole protector. Deliver us not, therefore, into the hands of our enemies unto evil, but receive us, as thy servants, unto good; that the haughty ones who calumniate us, namely the enemies of our souls, may be repelled by the might of thy power. Thou, by the human nature thou hast assumed, art the lamp set on the stand of the cross: we beseech thee, therefore, that thou enkindle us by thy flame, lest we become a prey to punishment. Behold us now entering, with devout hearts, upon the feast of thy Passion; oh! grant that we may partake of the merits of thy Passion: that thus, being delivered from the error of our darkness, we may be fortified by the help of thy light.

That we may the better honour the holy cross, we give, for each day of this week, an appropriate hymn from one or other of the various ancient liturgies. The one we have selected for to-day is the composition of St. Venantius Fortunatus, bishop of Poitiers.

HYMN

Crux benedicta nitet, Dominus qua carne pependit.
Atque cruore suo vulnera nostra lavat.Mitis amore pio pro nobis victima factus,
Traxit ab ore lupi qua sacer Agnus oves.

Transfixis palmis ubi mundum a clade redemit,
Atque suo clausit funere mortis iter.

Hic manus illa fuit clavis confixa cruentis.
Quae eripuit Paulum crimine, morte Petrum.

Fertilitate potens, o dulce et nobile lignum,
Quando tuis ramis tam nova poma geris.

Cujus odore novo defuncta cadavera surgunt,
Et redeunt vitae qui caruere die.

Nullum uret aestus sub frondibus arboris hujus:
Luna nec in noctem, sol neque meridie.

Tu plantata micas secus est ubi cursus aquarum:
Spargis et ornatas flore recente comas.

Appensa est vitis inter tua brachia, de qua
Dulcia sanguineo vina rubore fluunt.

Brightly shineth the blessed cross, whereon hung the Body of our Lord, when, with his Blood, he washed our wounds.Become, out of tender love for us, a meek Victim, this divine Lamb did by the cross rescue us his sheep from the jaws of the wolf.

‘Twas there, with his hands nailed to the wood, that he redeemed the world from ruin, and by his own death, closed the way of death.

Here was fastened with cruel nails that hand which delivered Paul from sin, and Peter from death.

O sweet and noble tree! how vigorous in thy growth, when, on thy branches, hang fruits so rare as these!

Thy fresh fragrance gives resurrection to many that lay in the tomb, and restores the dead to life.

He that shelters beneath thy shade, shall not be scorched either by the moon at night or by the midday sun.

Planted near the running waters, thou art lovely in thy verdure, and blossoms ever fresh blow on each fair branch.

Between thine arms hangs the pendant Vine, whence wine most sweet flows in a ruddy stream