Novena in Honor of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Second Day

Immaculate Conception - Mateo Cerezo

Immaculate Conception – Mateo Cerezo

Novena in Preparation for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception 

        November 29 – December 7

Rules for the Proper Observance of Novenas

By St. Alphonsus Liguori

The soul must be in the state of grace; for the devotion of a sinful heart pleases neither God nor the saints.

  1. We must persevere, that is, the prayers for each day of the novena must never be omitted.
  2. If possible, we should visit a church every day, and there implore the favor we desire.
  3. Every day we ought to perform certain specified acts of exterior self-denial and interior mortification, in order to prepare us thereby for the reception of grace.
  4. It is most important that we receive Holy Communion when making a novena. Therefore prepare yourself well for it.
  5. After obtaining the desired grace for which the novena was made, do not omit to return thanks to God and to the saint through whose intercession your prayers were heard.

          SECOND DAY

Mary’s Immaculate Conception

PREPARATORY PRAYER

In thy conception, O Virgin Mary, thou wast immaculate; pray for us to the Father, whose Son Jesus, conceived in thy womb by the Holy Ghost, thou didst bring forth.

Pope Pio IX - Declares Dogma of the Immaculate Conception

      MEDITATION

According to the definition of Pope Pius IX, the immaculate conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary is that privilege by which she was preserved, in view of the merits of our Saviour Jesus Christ, from original sin in the first moment of her conception. By solemnly proclaiming the dogma of Mary’s Immaculate Conception, the Church confirmed anew the fundamental principles of Christianity which in our times are so frequently attacked, derided, or forgotten. God reserved the solemn proclamation of this dogma, which seemingly has no practical bearing on the Christian life, for our age, to recall to our mind the doctrines resulting from it.

     PRACTICE

The most important of these doctrines is that of original sin, which to-day is rejected by many as a debasement of human nature, and is forgotten by others as having no practical influence on our moral state. By the promulgation of the doctrine of the immaculate conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Church solemnly declares and defines as an article of faith, that the Blessed Virgin Mary is conceived without the stain of original sin by a special privilege and grace of God. If, then, Mary’s sinlessness is an exception, the general rule remains in force, and all other human beings enter this world in the state of original sin.

The doctrine of the Immaculate Conception was formally proclaimed on December 8, 1854, by Pope Pius IX. This holy card is a remembrance of the proclamation at the 25th anniversary in 1879.

The doctrine of the Immaculate Conception was formally proclaimed on December 8, 1854, by Pope Pius IX. This holy card is a remembrance of the proclamation at the 25th anniversary in 1879.

Thus, by the proclamation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, the Church combats human pride and sensuality, the foremost vices of the age.

PRAYER OF THE CHURCH

O God, who through the immaculate conception of the Virgin didst prepare a worthy dwelling-place for Thy divine Son; grant that, as in view of Thy Son Thou didst preserve her from all taint, so Thou wouldst vouchsafe unto us that cleansed from all sin by her intercession we too may arrive at Thine eternal glory. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis!

Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis!

LITANY OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us,
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Holy Mother of God, pray for us.
Holy Virgin of virgins, pray for us.
Mother of Christ, pray for us.
Mother of divine grace, pray for us.
Mother most pure, pray for us.
Mother most chaste, pray for us.
Mother inviolate, pray for us.
Mother undefiled, pray for us.
Mother most amiable, pray for us.
Mother most admirable, pray for us.
Mother of good counsel, pray for us.
Mother of our Creator, pray for us.
Mother of our Redeemer, pray for us.
Virgin most prudent, pray for us.
Virgin most venerable, pray for us.
Virgin most renowned, pray for us.
Virgin most powerful, pray for us.
Virgin most merciful, pray for us.
Virgin most faithful, pray for us.
Mirror of justice, pray for us.
Seat of wisdom, pray for us.
Cause of our joy, pray for us.
Spiritual vessel, pray for us.
Vessel of honor, pray for us.
Singular vessel of devotion, pray for us.
Mystical rose, pray for us.
Tower of David, pray for us.
Tower of ivory, pray for us.
House of gold, pray for us.
Ark of the covenant, pray for us.
Gate of heaven, pray for us.
Morning star, pray for us.
Health of the sick, pray for us.
Refuge of sinners, pray for us.
Comforter of the afflicted, pray for us.
Help of Christians, pray for us.
Queen of angels, pray for us.
Queen of patriarchs, pray for us.
Queen of prophets, pray for us.
Queen of apostles, pray for us.
Queen of martyrs, pray for us.
Queen of confessors, pray for us.
Queen of virgins, pray for us.
Queen of all saints, pray for us.
Queen conceived without original sin, pray for us.
Queen of the most holy rosary, pray for us.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world: Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world: Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world: Have mercy on us, O Lord.
V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God:
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray

Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts, that we, to whom the incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by His passion and cross be brought to the glory of His resurrection. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.

That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray

Vouchsafe, O Lord, that we may be helped by the merits of Thy most holy Mother’s spouse; that what of ourselves we can not obtain may be given us through his intercession. Who livest and reignest, world without end. Amen.

Immaculate Conception - Ever Virgin Mother of God

PRAYER

Behold, Virgin immaculate, at thy sacred feet I bow, while my heart overflows with joy in union with thine own, because from eternity thou wast the Mother-elect of the eternal Word, and was preserved stainless from the taint of Adam’s sin. Forever praised, forever blessed be the Most Holy Trinity, who in thy conception poured out upon thy soul the riches of that matchless privilege. I humbly pray thee, most gracious Mother, obtain for me the grace to overcome the bitter results of original sin. Make me victorious over them, that I may never cease to love my God.

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NOVENA IN HONOR OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Virgin of the Annunciation, ANTONELLO da Messina - WGA

Novena in Preparation for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

 November 29 -December 7

        FIRST DAY

Predestination of the Blessed Virgin Mary

PREPARATORY PRAYER

In thy conception, O Virgin Mary, thou wast immaculate; pray for us to the Father, whose Son Jesus, conceived in thy womb by the Holy Ghost, thou didst bring forth.

MEDITATION

Holy Church, our Mother, purposely gathered into the season of Advent everything which might contribute to assist us in preparing for the coming of the Redeemer. Purity of heart is the most necessary and helpful requirement for receiving God worthily, and for participating in the fruits of our Redemption through Christ. To remind us of this, Holy Church celebrates the feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, this primary feast of purity, in Advent.

The Church, moreover, intends to remind us that the coming of Christ, our promised Redeemer, depended on the consent of the Blessed Virgin. The Redeemer could not appear before she was born of whom He was to be born. The aurora must precede the rising sun. Thus also Mary, the spiritual aurora, had to be conceived and born before the appearance of the Sun of Justice in this world.

Immaculate Conception Novena - First day - She whose heel crushes the head of the serpent

PRACTICE

In Mary appeared the woman who was to crush the serpent’s head, who was to repair by her willing co-operation with God’s designs the damage wrought by the disobedience of our first parents, and who was to become our mother and mighty advocate with God.

The designs of God concerning Mary were fully accomplished. God also has designs concerning us. Our life was planned by Him from all eternity, and we were destined to co-operate with Him harmoniously and conscientiously in working out our salvation. Have we corresponded with God’s designs? Did we not oppose them by yielding to our evil inclinations and passions? What a disparity between God’s intentions concerning us and our own co-operation, between His merciful designs and our cowardly resistance to them!

PRAYER OF THE CHURCH

O God, who through the immaculate conception of the Virgin didst prepare a worthy dwelling-place for Thy divine Son; grant that, as in view of Thy Son Thou didst preserve her from all taint, so Thou wouldst vouchsafe unto us that cleansed from all sin by her intercession we too may arrive at Thine eternal glory. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Litany of Loreto - Often called the Litany of Loreto because it was first approved in 1587 for use in the Shrine of the Holy House of Loreto in Italy

Litany of the Blessed Virgin

Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us,
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Holy Mother of God, pray for us.
Holy Virgin of virgins, pray for us.
Mother of Christ, pray for us.
Mother of divine grace, pray for us.
Mother most pure, pray for us.
Mother most chaste, pray for us.
Mother inviolate, pray for us.
Mother undefiled, pray for us.
Mother most amiable, pray for us.
Mother most admirable, pray for us.
Mother of good counsel, pray for us.
Mother of our Creator, pray for us.
Mother of our Redeemer, pray for us.
Virgin most prudent, pray for us.
Virgin most venerable, pray for us.
Virgin most renowned, pray for us.
Virgin most powerful, pray for us.
Virgin most merciful, pray for us.
Virgin most faithful, pray for us.
Mirror of justice, pray for us.
Seat of wisdom, pray for us.
Cause of our joy, pray for us.
Spiritual vessel, pray for us.
Vessel of honor, pray for us.
Singular vessel of devotion, pray for us.
Mystical rose, pray for us.
Tower of David, pray for us.
Tower of ivory, pray for us.
House of gold, pray for us.
Ark of the covenant, pray for us.
Gate of heaven, pray for us.
Morning star, pray for us.
Health of the sick, pray for us.
Refuge of sinners, pray for us.
Comforter of the afflicted, pray for us.
Help of Christians, pray for us.
Queen of angels, pray for us.
Queen of patriarchs, pray for us.
Queen of prophets, pray for us.
Queen of apostles, pray for us.
Queen of martyrs, pray for us.
Queen of confessors, pray for us.
Queen of virgins, pray for us.
Queen of all saints, pray for us.
Queen conceived without original sin, pray for us.
Queen of the most holy rosary, pray for us.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world: Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world: Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world: Have mercy on us, O Lord.
V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God:
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray

Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts, that we, to whom the incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by His passion and cross be brought to the glory of His resurrection. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.

That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray

Vouchsafe, O Lord, that we may be helped by the merits of Thy most holy Mother’s spouse; that what of ourselves we can not obtain may be given us through his intercession. Who livest and reignest, world without end. Amen.

Prayer

Behold, Virgin immaculate, at thy sacred feet I bow, while my heart overflows with joy in union with thine own, because from eternity thou wast the Mother-elect of the eternal Word, and was preserved stainless from the taint of Adam’s sin. Forever praised, forever blessed be the Most Holy Trinity, who in thy conception poured out upon thy soul the riches of that matchless privilege. I humbly pray thee, most gracious Mother, obtain for me the grace to overcome the bitter results of original sin. Make me victorious over them, that I may never cease to love my God.

MOST HOLY MOTHER OF GOD PRAY FOR US SINNERS!!

Ejaculation

O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee!

 

 

FIRST SUNDAY IN ADVENT – MASS PROPERS

advent 4 last things

First Sunday In Advent

The whole world is in expectation of its Redeemer; come, dear Jesus, show Thyself to it by granting it salvation. The Church, Thy bride, is now commencing another year, and her first word is to Thee, a word which she speaks in the anxious solicitude of a mother for the safety of her children; she cries out to Thee, saying: ‘Come!’ No, we will go no farther in our journey through the desert of this life without Thee, 0 Jesus! Time is passing quickly away from us; our day is perhaps far spent, and the shades of our life’s night are fast coming on; arise, 0 divine Sun of justice. Come! guide our steps and save us from eternal death.

Dom Gueranger – The Liturgical Year

Advent

Advent, from the Latin word adventus meaning “coming.” A time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas. It is the beginning of the Western liturgical year and commences on Advent Sunday, called Levavi.

Advent is a period beginning with the Sunday nearest to the feast of St. Andrew the Apostle (30 November) and embracing four Sundays. The first Sunday may be as early as 27 November, and then Advent has twenty-eight days, or as late as 3 December, giving the season only twenty-one days.

During this time the faithful are admonished to prepare themselves worthily to celebrate the anniversary of the Lord’s coming into the world as the incarnate God of love, thus to make their souls fitting abodes for the Redeemer coming in Holy Communion and through grace, and thereby to make themselves ready for His final coming as judge, at death and at the end of the world.

SYMBOLISM

To attain this object the Church has arranged the Liturgy for this season. In the official prayer, the Breviary, she calls upon her ministers, in the Invitatory for Matins, to adore “the Lord the King that is to come”, “the Lord already near”, “Him Whose glory will be seen on the morrow”. As Lessons for the first Nocturn she prescribes chapters from the prophet Isaias, who speaks in scathing terms of the ingratitude of the house of Israel, the chosen children who had forsaken and forgotten their Father; who tells of the Man of Sorrows stricken for the sins of His people; who describes accurately the passion and death of the coming Saviour and His final glory; who announces the gathering of the Gentiles to the Holy Hill. In the second Nocturn the Lessons on three Sundays are taken from the eighth homily of Pope St. Leo (440-461) on fasting and almsdeeds as a preparation for the advent of the Lord, and on one Sunday (the second) from St. Jerome’s commentary on Isaias 11:1, which text he interprets of the Blessed Virgin Mary as “the rod out of the root of Jesse”. In the hymns of the season we find praise for the coming of Christ, the Creator of the universe, as Redeemer, combined with prayer to the coming judge of the world to protect us from the enemy. Similar ideas are expressed in the antiphons for the Magnificat on the last seven days before the Vigil of the Nativity. In them, the Church calls on the Divine Wisdom to teach us the way of prudence; on the Key of David to free us from bondage; on the Rising Sun to illuminate us sitting in darkness and the shadow of death, etc. In the Masses the intention of the Church is shown in the choice of the Epistles and Gospels. In the Epistle she exhorts the faithful that, since the Redeemer is nearer, they should cast aside the works of darkness and put on the armour of light; should walk honestly, as in the day, and put on the Lord Jesus Christ; she shows that the nations are called to praise the name of the Lord; she asks them to rejoice in the nearness of the Lord, so that the price of God, which surpasses all understanding, may keep their hearts and minds in Christ Jesus; she admonishes them not to pass judgment, for the Lord, when He comes, will manifest the secrets hidden in hearts. In the Gospels the Church speaks of the Lord coming in glory; of Him in, and through, Whom the prophecies are being fulfilled; of the Eternal walking in the midst of the Jews; of the voice in the desert, “Prepare ye the way of the Lord”. The Church in her Liturgy takes us in spirit back to the time before the incarnation of the Son of God, as though it were really yet to take place. Cardinal Wiseman says:

We are not dryly exhorted to profit by that blessed event, but we are daily made to sigh with the Fathers of old, “Send down the dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One: let the earth be opened, and bud forth the Redeemer.”

HISTORICAL ORIGIN

It cannot be determined with any degree of certainty when the celebration of Advent was first introduced into the Church. The preparation for the feast of the Nativity of Our Lord was not held before the feast itself existed, and of this we find no evidence before the end of the fourth century, when, according to Duchesne [Christian Worship (London, 1904), 260], it was celebrated throughout the whole Church, by some on 25 December, by others on 6 January. Of such a preparation we read in the Acts of a synod held at Saragossa in 380, whose fourth canon prescribes that from the seventeenth of December to the feast of the Epiphany no one should be permitted to absent himself from church. We have two homilies of St. Maximus, Bishop of Turin (415-466), entitled “In Adventu Domini”, but he makes no reference to a special time. The title may be the addition of a copyist. There are some homilies extant, most likely of St. Caesarius, Bishop of Arles (502-542), in which we find mention of a preparation before the birthday of Christ; still, to judge from the context, no general law on the matter seems then to have been in existence. A synod held (581) at Mâcon, in Gaul, by its ninth canon orders that from the eleventh of November to the Nativity the Sacrifice be offered according to the Lenten rite on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday of the week. The Gelasian Sacramentary notes five Sundays for the season; these five were reduced to four by Pope St. Gregory VII (1073-85). The collection of homilies of St. Gregory the Great (590-604) begins with a sermon for the second Sunday of Advent. In 650 Advent was celebrated in Spain with five Sundays. Several synods had made laws about fasting to be observed during this time, some beginning with the eleventh of November, others the fifteenth, and others as early as the autumnal equinox. Other synods forbade the celebration of matrimony. In the Greek Church we find no documents for the observance of Advent earlier than the eighth century. St. Theodore the Studite (d. 826), who speaks of the feasts and fasts commonly celebrated by the Greeks, makes no mention of this season. In the eighth century we find it observed not as a liturgical celebration, but as a time of fast and abstinence, from 15 November to the Nativity, which, according to Goar, was later reduced to seven days. But a council of the Ruthenians (1720) ordered the fast according to the old rule from the fifteenth of November. This is the rule with at least some of the Greeks. Similarly, the Ambrosian and the Mozarabic rites have no special liturgy for Advent, but only the fast.

Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)

FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT – MASS PROPERS

When these things begin to come to pass, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is at hand.

Ad te levávi ánimam meam: Deus meus, in te confído, non erubéscam: neque irrídeant me inimíci mei: étenim univérsi, qui te exspéctant, non confundéntur.

THE MYSTERY OF ADVENT

In the first coming,’ says St. Bernard, He comes in the flesh and in weakness; in the second, He comes in spirit and in power; in the third, He comes in glory and in majesty; and the second coming is the means whereby we pass from the first to the third.’

Commemoration for St. Saturninus, Martyr

St. Saturninus was one of the “Apostles to the Gauls” sent out (probably under the direction of Pope Fabian, 236 – 250) during the consulate of Decius and Gratus (250-251) to Christianize Gaul after the persecutions under Emperor Decius had all but dissolved the small Christian communities. St Fabian sent out seven bishops from Rome to Gaul to preach the Gospel: Saint Gatien to Tours, Saint Trophimus to Arles, Saint Paul to Narbonne, Saint Saturnin to Toulouse, Saint Denis to Paris, Austromoine to Clermont, and Saint Martial to Limoges.

advent st alphonsus

THE FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT – MASS PROPERS

1st Class/ Semi-double/Violet Vestments

Missa – ‘Ad te levavi’

INTROIT Psalm 24. 1-3 

Ad te levávi ánimam meam: Deus meus, in te confído, non erubéscam: neque irrídeant me inimíci mei: étenim univérsi, qui te exspéctant, non confundéntur.

Psalm 24: 4  Vias tuas, Domine, demónstra mihi: et sémitas tuas édoce me.

Glória Patri, et Fílio, et Spirítui Sancto. Sicut erat in princípio, et nunc, et semper, et in sæcula sæculórum.  Amen.

Ad te levávi ánimam meam:  Deus meus, in te confído, non erubéscam: neque irrídeant me inimíci mei:  étenim univérsi qui te exspéctant, non confundéntur.

Unto thee, O Lord, have I lifted up my soul: my God, in thee do I trust, O let me not be confounded.  Neither let mine enemies triumph over me: for all they that hope in thee shall not be confounded.

Psalm 24: 4  Show me thy ways, O Lord, and teach me thy paths.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Unto thee, O Lord, have I lifted up my soul: my God, in thee do I trust, O let me not be confounded.  Neither let mine enemies triumph over me: for all they that hope in thee shall not be confounded.

COLLECT

Excita, quæsumus, Dómine, poténtiam tuam, et veni: ut ab imminéntibus peccatórum nostrórum perículis, te mereámur protegénte éripi, te liberánte salvári:   Qui vivis et regnas cum Deo Patre, in unitáte Spíritus Sancti Deus, per ómnia sæcula sæculórum. Amen.

Stir up thy power, O Lord, we beseech thee, and come: that by Thy protection we may deserve to be rescued from the threatening dangers of our sins and saved by Thy deliverance. Who livest and reignest with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

November 29 St Saturnin

Second Collect of St. Saturninus, Martyr

O God, You Who give us the joy of celebrating the anniversary of the death of blessed Saturninus, Your Martyr, grant that we may be helped by his merits.

It is right that we should also beg, during this holy season, the all-powerful mediation of Her who, at first, was the sole depository of the great secret which was to give life to the world, with the Priest:

The Annunciation -

Third Collect in Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary

O God, who didst please that thy Word should take flesh at the message of an Angel in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary, grant unto us thy suppliants, that we, who believe her to be truly the Mother of God, may be helped by her intercession with thee.

EPISTLE – Romans 13: 11-14

Brethren, knowing that it is now the hour for us to rise from sleep. For now our salvation is nearer than when we believed. The night is passed and the day is at hand. Let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day: not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and impurities, not in contention and envy: but put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ.

GRADUAL – Psalm 24: 3, 4 

Univérsi, qui te exspéctant, non confundéntur, Dómine. Vias tuas, Dómine, notas fac mihi: et sémitas tuas édoce me.

All they, that wait on Thee, shall not be confounded, O Lord. Show, O Lord, Thy ways to me: and teach me Thy paths.

ALLELUIA – Psalm 84: 4 

Allelúia, allelúia. V. Osténde nobis, Dómine, misericórdiam tuam: et salutáre tuum da nobis. Allelúia.

Alleluia, alleluia. V. Show us, O Lord, Thy mercy: and grant us Thy salvation Alleluia.

Advent 1And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon...

GOSPEL – Luke 21. 25-33

At that time Jesus said to His disciples: There shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, by reason of the confusion of the roaring of the sea and of the waves: men withering away for fear and expectation of what shall come upon the whole world. For the powers of heaven shall be moved. And then they shall see the Son of man coming in a cloud with great power and majesty.  But when these things begin to come to pass, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is at hand. And He spoke to them a similitude: See the fig tree and all the trees: when they now shoot forth their fruit, you know that summer is nigh. So you also, when you shall see these things come to pass, know that the kingdom of God is at hand. Amen, I say to you, this generation shall not pass away till all things be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away: but My words shall not pass away. 

OFFERTORY: Psalm 129: 1-2

To Thee have I lifted up my soul: in Thee, O my God, I put my trust, let me not be ashamed: neither let my enemies laugh at me: for none of them that wait for Thee shall be confounded.

SECRET 

May these holy Mysteries, O Lord, cleanse us by their powerful efficacy, and enable us to come with greater purity to Him who is their foundation. Through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

Second Secret Prayer of St. Saturninus, Martyr

O Lord, make holy the sacrificial gifts we offer to You, and through the intercession of blessed Saturninus, Your Martyr, be appeased and look with favor upon us.

Third Secret Prayer in Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Strengthen, we beseech thee, O Lord, in our minds the mysteries of the true faith:  that we who confess him that was conceived of the Virgin to be very God and very Man, may by the power of his saving Resurrection, deserve to arrive at eternal gladness.

PREFACE OF THE MOST HOLY TRINITY

It is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation, that we should at all times and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, ever-lasting God: Who, together with Thine only-begotten Son, and the Holy Ghost, are one God, one Lord: not in the oneness of a single Person, but in the Trinity of one substance. For what we believe by Thy revelation of Thy glory, the same do we believe of Thy Son, the same of the Holy Ghost, without difference or separation. So that in confessing the true and everlasting Godhead, distinction in persons, unity in essence, and equality in majesty may be adored. Which the Angels and Archangels, the Cherubim also and Seraphim do praise: who cease not daily to cry out with one voice saying:

Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus, Dóminus Deus Sábaoth. Pleni sunt cæli et terra glória tua. Hosánna in excélsis. Benedíctus  qui venit in nómine Dómini. Hosánna in excélsis.

Advent -Since Christ Himself has said, This is My Body who shall dare to doubt that It is His Body

Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of hosts. Heaven and earth are full of Thy glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he  that cometh in the Name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

COMMUNION – Psalm 84: 13

The Lord will give goodness: and our earth shall yield her fruit.

POSTCOMMUNION

May we receive of thy mercy, O Lord, in the midst of Thy temple; that we may with becoming honour prepare for the approaching solemnities of our redemption.  Through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord…

Tomb of St. Saturninus in the Basilica of St. Sernin, Toulouse, France

Second Postcommunion Prayer for St. Saturninus, Martyr

May the reception of Your sacrament, we beseech You, O Lord, make us holy, and by the intercession of Your saints, make us pleasing to You.

Third Postcommunion in Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Pour forth, we beseech thee, O Lord, thy grace into our hearts, that we to whom the Incarnation of Christ thy Son was made known by the message of an Angel, may by his Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of the Resurrection.

 

St. Sylvester, Abbot – Mass Propers

st sylvester abbot

        November 26

SAINT SYLVESTER, ABBOT

From the Liturgical Year – By Dom Guéranger, Abbot

God often brings the world to those who flee from it, as Sylvester Gozzolini among others experienced. In the thirteenth century, the world, all in admiration at the sanctity and the eloquence of the new Orders, seemed to have forgotten the monks and the desert. God, who never forgets, led his elect silently into solitude, and the wilderness began again to rejoice and flourish like the lily; strength was restored to the weak hands and feeble knees of the sons of the cloister. The austerities of olden days and the fervour of prolonged prayer were revived at Monte Fano, and extended into sixty other monasteries; the new religious family of the Sylvestrians was approved by Innocent IV, in 1247. Though originated seven centuries after St. Benedict, and distinguished from the elder families by its blue habit, it claims the Patriarch of Cassino for its legislator and father.

Let us read the life of St. Sylvester which was inserted in the Breviary by Pope Leo XIII.

St. Sylvester

             ROMAN BREVIARY

This Silvester was born of a noble family at Ossimo, in Picenum, and in his childhood was a wonderful example both in regard to letters and good living. When he grew older his father sent him to Bologna to study the law, but God warned him to give himself to divinity, and he thereby incurred the wrath of his father, which he bore with complacency for ten full years. On account of his eminent graces he was elected an honorary canon of the Cathedral of Ossimo, in the which dignity he ministered to the people by his prayers, his example, and his sermons.

At the funeral of a certain nobleman he perceived in an open grave the disfigured corpse of a kinsman of his own who had been very comely in his lifetime, and he said to himself, I am what he was, and what he is I shall be. Straightway after the funeral he read the words of the Lord, If any man will come after Me let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me (Matth. xvi. 24.) Thereupon he withdrew into the desert to seek after greater perfection, and then gave himself up to watching, praying, and fasting, very often taking no food but uncooked herbs. In order, however, to cut himself off the more from men, he moved from one place to another, and at length came to Mount Fano, which is hard by Fabriano, but was itself then absolutely uninhabited. Then he built a church in honour of the holy Father Benedict, and founded the congregation of Silvestrians, with a rule and dress which were revealed to him in a vision by the holy Patriarch himself.

Satan envied him, strove to trouble his monks by divers terrors, and made an hostile attack by night upon the gates of his monastery, but the man of God so overcame the assault of the enemy that his monks were the more confirmed in their Institute and recognized the holiness of their father. He shone with the spirit of prophecy and other gifts. These things he always preserved by the deepest lowliness, whereby he so stirred up against him the ill-will of the devil that that evil spirit cast him headlong down the stairs of his oratory, and went near to slay him, but he was restored to soundness by the helpful gift of the Virgin. This help he remembered with an unceasing and singular love toward her until the last breath of his life, the which breath he resigned to God, famous for holiness and miracles, aged almost ninety years, upon the 26th day of November, in the year of salvation 1267. The Supreme Pontiff Leo XIII. extended his Office and Mass to the whole Church.

November 26 Sts. Clement and Peter Fresco from Decani Monastery depicting St. Clement the Hieromartyr Pope of Rome and the Martyrdom of St. Peter the Hieromartyr, Archbishop of Alexandria

Commemoration of St. Peter of Alexandria, Martyr

           From The Roman Breviary

This Peter succeeded that eminent Saint, Theonas, as Pope of Alexandria, (in the year of our Lord 300,) and the glory of his holiness and teaching hath enlightened not Egypt only, but the whole Church of God. The wondrous patience wherewith he bore the roughness of the times in the persecution under Maximian Galerius caused many greatly to increase in Christian graces. He was the first who cut off Arius, then a Deacon of Alexandria, from the Communion of the faithful, on account of his leaning to the Meletian schism. He was condemned to death by Maximian, and was in prison when there came to him the two Priests Achilles and Alexander to plead for Arius, but Peter told them that Jesus had appeared to him in the night clad in a rent garment, and when he asked what was thereby signified, had said unto him Arius hath torn My vesture, which is the Church. Also, he foretold to them that they should be Popes of Alexandria after him, and strictly commanded them never to receive Arius into Communion, because he knew him to be dead in the sight of God. That this was a true prophecy the event did shortly prove. At length, in the twelfth year of his Popedom, upon the 26th day of November, in the year of salvation 311, his head was cut off, and he went hence to receive the crown of his testimony.

Holy Mass Graces blessings favors

St Sylvester, Abbott

St. Peter of Alexandria, Bishop and Martyr.  

Double / White

Missa ‘Os justi’

INTROIT: Psalm 36: 30-31

Os justi meditabitur sapientiam, et lingua ejus loquetur judicium: lex Dei ejus in corde ipsius.

Ps. Noli æmulari in malignantibus: neque zelaveris facientes iniquitatem.

Gloria Patri.

The mouth of the just shall meditate wisdom, and his tongue shall speak judgment: the law of his God is in his heart.

Ps. Be not emulous of evildoers: nor envy them that work iniquity.

Glory be to the Father.

COLLECT

O most merciful God, Who, when the holy Abbot Sylvester was piously pondering over the vanity of earthly things whilst he stood by an open grave, didst vouchsafe to call him to the desert, we supplicate Thee that, despising earthly things, after his example, we may forever enjoy Thy presence. Through our Lord.

Commemoration of St Peter of Alexandria

Look upon our infirmity, O almighty God, and, because the weight of our own evil deeds beareth us down, may the glorious intercession of blessed Peter, Thy Martyr and Bishop, protect us. Through our Lord.

EPISTLE Ecclesiasticus 45: 1-6

Lesson from the Book of Wisdom

He was beloved of God and men, whose memory is in benediction; He made him like the saints in glory, and magnified him in the fear of his enemies; and with his words he made prodigies to cease; He glorified him in the sight of kings, and gave him commandments in the sight of his people, and showed him his glory; He sanctified him in his faith and meekness, and chose him out of all flesh; for He heard him and his voice, and brought him into a cloud; and He gave him commandments before his face, and a law of life and instruction.

GRADUAL: Psalm 20: 4-5

Domine, prævenísti eum in benedictiónibus dulcédinis: posuísti in cápite ejus corónam de lápide pretióso. Vitam pétiit a te, et tribuísti ei longitúdinem diérum in sæculum sæculi.

O Lord, Thou hast prevented him with blessings of sweetness; Thou hast set on his head a crown of precious stones. He asked life of Thee, and Thou hast given him length of days for ever and ever.

ALLELUIA: Psalm 91: 13

Alleluia, allelúia.

Justus ut palma florébit: sicut cedrus Líbani multiplicábitur. Allelúia.

Alleluia, alleluia.

The just shall flourish like the palm tree; he shall grow up like the cedar of Libanus. Alleluia.

 St. Peter

GOSPEL: Matthew 19: 27-29

The continuation of the holy Gospel according to St. Matthew

At that time, Peter said to Jesus: Behold we have left all things, and have followed Thee: what therefore shall we have? And Jesus said to them: Amen I say to you, that you who have followed Me, in the regeneration, when the Son of man shall sit on the seat of His majesty, you also shall sit on twelve seats judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And every one that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for My name’s sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall possess life everlasting.

Homily by St Jerome, Priest at Bethlehem.

Bk. iii. on Matth xix.

Peter was a fisherman, he was not rich, he earned his bread by his hand and skill, and nevertheless he is thus bold, and saith confidently: We have forsaken all. And because it sufficeth not to forsake only, he addeth that which to do is to be perfect: and followed thee. We have done that which Thou hast commanded us, what reward therefore wilt Thou give us? And Jesus said unto them Amen I say unto you, that ye which have followed Me, in the regeneration, when the Son of Man shall sit in the throne of His glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. He said not, Ye which have forsaken all, for this did even Crates the philosopher, and they which have set nothing by riches are many, but, Ye which have followed Me. This did the Apostles, and this do believers do.

SAINT PETER ON THE GLOBE WITH THREE ANGELS By Il Baciccio

SAINT PETER ON THE GLOBE WITH THREE ANGELS By Il Baciccio

In the regeneration, when the Son of Man shall sit in the throne of His glory, and when the dead shall rise again from corruption incorruptible, i Cor. xv. 53, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones of judgment, condemning the twelve tribes of Israel, because, when ye believed in Me, they would not. John iii. 18. And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for My Name’s sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. This place agreeth well with that other where the Saviour saith I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. Matth. x. 34. Every one, therefore, that hath set no store by affection, and riches, and the pleasures of the world, for Christ’s faith’s sake, and the preaching of the Gospel, shall receive an hundred-fold, and shall inherit everlasting life.

OFFERTORY: Psalm 20: 3, 4

Desiderium animæ ejus tribuisti ei, Domine, et voluntate labiorum ejus, non fraudasti eum: posuisti in capite ejus coronam de lapide pretioso.

Thou hast given him his heart’s desire, O Lord, and hast not withholden from him the will of his lips: Thou hast set on his head a crown of precious stones.

SECRET 

We beseech Thee, O Lord, that, while we reverently offer these gifts to Thy divine majesty we may by pious preparation of soul and purity of heart, following the example of blessed Abbot Sylvester, become worthy to partake holily of the Body and Blood of Thy Son: Who with Thee livest and reignest.

Commemoration of St Peter of Alexandria

Graciously receive, O Lord, the sacrifice offered to Thee by the merits of blessed Peter, Thy Martyr and Bishop, and grant that it may be to us an unfailing help. Through our Lord.

COMMON PREFACE

It is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation that we should at all times and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, eternal God: through Christ our Lord. through Whom the Angels praise Thy Majesty, Dominations worship, Powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the Heavenly hosts together with the blessed Seraphim in triumphant chorus unite to celebrate it. Together with them we entreat Thee, that Thou mayest bid our voices also to be admitted, while we say in lowly praise:

MOST HOLY TRINITY -

SANCTUS

SANCTUS, SANCTUS, SANCTUS Dominus Deus Sabaoth. Pleni sunt coeli et terra gloria Tua. Hosanna in excelsis. Benedictus qui venit in nomine Domini. Hosanna in excelsis.

COMMUNION: Luke 12: 42 

This is the faithful and wise steward, whom his lord setteth over his family: to give them their measure of wheat in due season.

POSTCOMMUNION 

We pray Thee, O Lord, that Thou grant unto us, refreshed with the divine banquet, to follow closely the footsteps of the holy Abbot Sylvester, that we may have an abundant reward with the saints in the kingdom of Thy glory. Through our Lord.

Commemoration of St Peter of Alexandria

Refreshed by participation in the sacred gift, we beseech Thee, O Lord, our God, that, through the intercession of blessed Peter, Thy Martyr and Bishop, we may ever experience the effect of the worship we offer. Through our Lord.

ST. JOHN OF THE CROSS – MASS PROPERS

ST JOHN OF THE CROSS - CONFESSOR AND DOCTOR NOVEMBER 24

             November 24

        St. John of the Cross

Religious founder, priest and Doctor of the Church

In 1542, was born at Fontiveros, a hamlet of old Castile, St. John of the Cross, renowned through the entire Christian world, as the restorer of the Carmelite Order. His mother, after his father’s early death, went to Medina del Campo, where John commenced his studies, and continued them until he entered the order of the Blessed Virgin of Mount Carmel. From his early youth he had entertained a child-like devotion to the Blessed Virgin, who more than once saved him most miraculously from death. One day, when playing with some other lads around a deep pond, he fell into it. In this danger, the Divine Mother appeared to him in a most beautiful form, and offered him her hand, to draw him out of the water. But as his hands were much soiled, he hesitated to take those of so brilliant a lady; whereupon his Guardian Angel, or some other inhabitant of heaven, held out to him from the edge of the pond, a long pole, by the aid of which he was happily saved. At another time he fell into a well, and when all feared that he was drowned, they saw him sitting quietly upon the water. When they drew him out, he said that the Queen of Heaven had caught him in her cloak, and thus prevented his sinking. Before he was nine years old, he showed a wonderful zeal in mortifying his body, chastising himself by taking only a short rest on a hard bed, and by voluntary fasts. While yet a student, he nursed, with great solicitude and charity, the sick in the hospitals. After he had taken the Carmelite habit, he was not satisfied with the penances then practiced in the convent, but endeavored to regulate his life in accordance with the first rules and ancient austerity of the Order. When he prepared himself to say his first holy Mass, he searched his conscience very carefully, but found no grievous fault. He then gave humble thanks to the Almighty, and during his Mass, begged for the grace to be kept in future free from all mortal sin. His prayer was accepted, and he heard the words: “I grant thee thy wish.” From that time St. John never offended the Lord by a mortal sin, nor voluntarily by a venial one. St. Teresa, who lived at that period, said of him that he was a Saint, and had been one all his life. This renowned and holy virgin met St. John at Medina, and conferred with him about her desire to found houses for religious, who would live according to the original strict regulations of the Carmelites. John, who, in his eagerness to live in greater austerity, had thought of joining the Carthusian monks, asked St. Teresa’s advice. She told him that it would be more agreeable to God, if he remained in his Order, and restored among the men the same primitive rigor which she was endeavoring to restore among the women. She added, that God had called him to this work. John took counsel with God and his confessor, and then resolved to follow St. Teresa’s advice. He erected his first monastery on a farm which had been presented to him for this purpose; and God so visibly blest his undertaking, that he not only filled his house, in a short time, with zealous men, but was enabled also to found several other convents. In these religious houses, all the inmates lived so holy and so austere a life, that many thought it was more to be admired than imitated. The Saint was an example to all, and one could hardly imagine a penance which he did not practise. He gave no ear to those who told him to moderate his severities, but said: “The narrow path leading to heaven cannot be travelled by me in a manner less austere.” The hardships he endured in founding his monasteries, and in restoring the severe regulations of the Order; the persecutions and wrongs he suffered, cannot be described in the short space allotted to us; yet in all these trials he was never despondent. The love of God possessed his heart so entirely, that he desired nothing but to labor and to suffer for His honor.

ST JOHN OF THE CROSS

The Lord asked him one day what recompense he desired for all his trouble and labor. “Nothing else, O Lord, but to suffer and to be despised for Thy sake,” was his answer. Three things he used to ask of the Almighty: — first, much work and much suffering; secondly, not to depart this life as a superior; thirdly, that he might live and die despised. So unusual a’ desire to suffer and to be despised, was the result of his meditation on the Passion of Jesus Christ, and of his great love to God. This love was so intense, that his countenance was frequently seen radiant with a heavenly light, especially when he spoke of divine things. At the time of prayer, as well as during holy Mass, he often fell into ecstasy and was dissolved in tears. Our Lord once appeared to him in the same form as when He died for us on the Cross.

Christ of St John of the Cross-

This picture remained so indelibly imprinted on the Saint’s memory, that it almost daily drew tears from his eyes. Into all those over whom he had the slightest influence he endeavored to instill a tender devotion to our crucified Lord, as well as to the Most Holy Trinity and to the Blessed Eucharist. His language to sinners was so forcible, that he converted even the most hardened. He was much aided in this by the gift which the Almighty had bestowed upon him, of reading the thoughts of the heart. Many who came to him were reproached with their secret sins, and admonished to reform their lives. He possessed also the gifts of prophecy, of driving out devils, and curing all kinds of diseases. Besides this, he had many visions of the Blessed Virgin, St. Joseph, St. John, and Christ the Lord. Especially remarkable were the heavenly favors with which this great servant of the Almighty was comforted during an imprisonment of nine months, to which he was unjustly condemned. Christ appeared to him and said: “Behold! John, I am here! Fear not. I will rescue thee!” The Blessed Virgin, accompanied by a great many Saints, appeared to him, and said: “My son, be patient and endure; for your trials will soon give way to joy.” In another vision, she admonished him to escape from the prison, promising him her assistance; a promise which she also kept. St. Teresa, who, during her life, had been closely united with” him, appeared also to him after her death, speaking to him most kindly. In his adversity she comforted him, and encouraged him to new labors for the honor of God. The reward of all the work which the holy man had accomplished, as also of the trials and tribulations he had suffered, was at length bestowed upon him, in the year 1591, when he was in the forty-ninth year of his age. He was seized with fever, in the hermitage of Pegnuela, and was brought from there to Ubeda, according to his wish. He had an ulcer on that part of his right foot where the holy feet of our Lord were pierced with nails. To open it, the surgeon was obliged to make a deep incision. The pain thus caused was very great; but greater still was the patience of the Saint, who even rejoiced at bearing, in some manner, the image of the sufferings of Christ, and at having five wounds on one foot. God had already, some time previously, revealed to him the hour of his death; and the Blessed   Virgin, whom the Saint had always especially honored, appeared to him on the eve of the Immaculate Conception, saying that she would come for him on the Sunday after the festival. When the physicians told him that his end was not far distant, he said, in the words of the Psalmist: “I was glad when they said unto me, We shall go up into the house of the Lord.” Half an hour before his death, he called all his religious to him, exhorted them to persevere in their zeal, and said: “My parting hour draws near.” After the usual prayers of the Church, he heard the bells ring for the midnight Matins. “I shall sing the Matins in Heaven,” said he; after which, taking the Crucifix, he kissed it most devoutly, and calmly ended his holy life, saying: “Into Thy hands, O Lord, I commend my soul.” A large ball, as of fire, was seen above the dying Saint. After his death, his countenance beamed with a heavenly brightness, and was so beautiful that none grew weary of looking at him; while at the same time such delicious odor emanated from him, that the whole monastery was filled with it. The Almighty has carefully preserved his body incorrupt until this hour.

 November 24 Saint Chrysogonus

St. Chrysogonus, Martyr

Chrysogonus was martyred at Aquileia, probably during the Persecution of Diocletian, was buried there, and publicly venerated by the faithful of that region. He is the patron saint of Zadar. His name is found in the Martyrologium Hieronymianum on two different days, 31 May and 24 November.

About the 6th century arose a legend of the martyr that made him a Roman and brought him into relation with Saint Anastasia, evidently to explain the veneration of Chrysogonus in the Roman church that bears his name. According to this legend, Chrysogonus, at first a functionary of the vicarius Urbis, was the Christian teacher of Anastasia, the daughter of the noble Roman Praetextatus. Being thrown into prison during the persecution of Diocletian, he comforted by his letters the severely afflicted Anastasia. By order of Diocletian, Chrysogonus was brought before the emperor at Aquileia, condemned to death, and beheaded. His corpse, thrown into the sea, was washed ashore and buried by the aged priest Zoilus who is also the patron saint of Zadar.

holy sacrifice of the mass -1

ST JOHN OF THE CROSS, CONFESSOR AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH

Double/White Vestments

Missa – ‘In Medio’

 

INTROIT – Ecclesiasticus 15: 5; Psalm 91: 2 

In medio Ecclesiae aperuit os ejus: et implevit eum Dominus spiritu sapientiæ, et intellectus: stolam gloriae induit eum. Ps. Bonum est confiteri Domino: et psallere nomini tuo, Altissime. Gloria Patri.

In the midst of the Church the Lord opened his mouth: and filled him with the spirit of wisdom and understanding: He clothed him with a robe of glory. Ps. It is good to give praise to the Lord: and to sing to Thy Name, O Most High. Glory be to the Father.

COLLECT

O God, Who didst make Thy holy Confessor and Doctor, John, a man of perfect self-denial and an eminent lover of the cross, grant that, continually applying ourselves to imitating him, we may attain unto everlasting glory. Through our Lord.

COMMEMORATION of St Chrysogonus, Martyr

Give ear, O Lord, to our supplications, that we, who know ourselves to be guilty by reason of our own iniquity, may be delivered by the intercession of blessed Chrysogonus, Thy Martyr. Through our Lord.

EPISTLE – II Timothy 4: 1-8

Dearly beloved, I charge thee before God and Jesus Christ, Who shall judge the living and the dead, by His coming, and His Kingdom. Preach the word: be instant in season: reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience, and doctrine. For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but according to their own desires they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears, and will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables. But be thou vigilant, labor in all things, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill thy ministry. Be sober. For I am even now ready to be sacrificed; and the time of my dissolution is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the Faith. As to the rest, there is laid up for me a crown of justice, which the Lord, the just Judge, will render to me in that day; and not only to me, but to them also that love His coming.

GRADUAL – Psalm 36: 30-31

The mouth of the just shall meditate wisdom, and his tongue shall speak judgment. The law of His God is in his heart: and his steps shall not be supplanted.

ALLELUIA – Ecclus. 45: 1, 9

Alleluia, alleluia. The Lord loved him and adorned him: He clothed him with a robe of glory. Alleluia.

St. John of the Cross 24 November

GOSPEL – Matthew 5: 13-19

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples: You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt lose its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is good for nothing any more but to be cast out, and be trodden on by men. You are the light of the world. A city seated on a mountain cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel but upon a candlestick, that it may shine to all that are before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father, Who is in heaven. Do not think that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For amen I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall not pass of the law, till all be fulfilled. He therefore that shall break one of these least commandments, and so shall teach men, shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but he that shall do and teach, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

OFFERTORY – Psalm 91: 13

The just shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow up like the cedar of Libanus.

SECRET

May the holy prayer of John, Thy Confessor and Doctor, fail us not, O Lord: may it render our offerings acceptable, and ever obtain for us Thy pardon. Through our Lord.

ST. CHRYSOGONUS

COMMEMORATION of St Chrysogonus

Be appeased, O Lord, with the gifts offered Thee, and, by the intercession of blessed Chrysogonus, Thy Martyr, defend us from all dangers. Through our Lord.

COMMON PREFACE

It is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation that we should at all times and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, eternal God: through Christ our Lord. through Whom the Angels praise Thy Majesty, Dominations worship, Powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the Heavenly hosts together with the blessed Seraphim in triumphant chorus unite to celebrate it. Together with them we entreat Thee, that Thou mayest bid our voices also to be admitted, while we say in lowly praise…

AT THE SANCTUS - AFTER PENTECOST

COMMUNION – Luke 12: 42

The faithful and wise servant, whom his lord setteth over his family: to give them their measure of wheat in due season.

POSTCOMMUNION

That Thy sacrifices may give us health, O Lord, may blessed John, Thy Confessor and illustrious Doctor, we beseech Thee, act as our intercessor. Through our Lord.

Church of St. Chrysogonus, Croatia

 

COMMEMORATION of St Chrysogonus

By the participation of Thy sacrament, O Lord, may we be cleansed from our hidden sins and delivered from the snares of our enemies. Through our Lord.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FEAST OF THE PRESENTATION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

The Presentation of the Virgin Mary by Titian

THE PRESENTATION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

‘Hearken, O daughter, and see, and incline thy ear, and forget thy people and thy father’s house; and the King shall greatly desire thy beauty.’ 

To-day’s festival is called the Presentation of Mary, because on this day Joachim and Anna, the holy parents of the Blessed Virgin, consecrated their little daughter to the divine service in the temple at Jerusalem, and Mary consecrated herself to the Almighty. At that time, there were two ways of consecrating children: one was ordained by the law, which required every male child to be offered to God, forty days, and every female child, eighty days after its birth. This ceremony was called the consecration of the child and the purification of the mother. The second kind of consecration was a voluntary self-oblation by which some persons devoted themselves to the Almighty. There were also many parents who either before, or immediately after their child’s birth, consecrated it to the service of the Lord, sometimes for a few years, sometimes for life. To this end, several separate dwellings had been erected in connection with the Temple, for men, women, youths and maidens, where they remained for the time which had been fixed by themselves or their parents. Their occupations consisted in decorating the temple, and in making the garments which the priests and levites wore during their sacred functions. Thus we read in the first book of Kings, that Anne, the spouse of Elkana, made a vow that if she gave birth to a male child, she would consecrate it to the Lord. The Lord blessed her and she brought forth a son, whom she named Samuel, and afterwards consecrated to the Most High, through the hands of the High Priest, Heli. In the second book of the Maccabees, we find mention of virgins, who lived and were educated in the Temple, that is, in a building annexed to it.

November 21 - The_Presentation_of_the_Virgin

It is the belief of several holy Fathers, that Joachim and Anna, being already advanced in years and having no issue, made a vow to God that if He would bless them with a child, and thus take from them the dishonor of being barren, they would consecrate their offspring to His service in the Temple. God heard their prayer and blessed them so greatly, that they became the parents of the most holy of all human beings, Mary, the ever Blessed Virgin. For three years they kept this sacred treasure at home, after which time, although Mary was their only comfort, they resigned her with pious fortitude, in fulfillment of their vow. Hence they went, with their daughter, to Jerusalem, presented her to the priest in the Temple, and consecrated her, through his hands, to the service of the Almighty. But who can worthily describe the devotion and veneration which Mary manifested at the consecration! She had not only consented cheerfully, but as, notwithstanding her tender years, she was already possessed of her full reason, and knew better than anyone else, in heaven or on earth, the Majesty of Him to whom she was consecrated, she had longed for the moment when she was to be given to Him. She went therefore most joyfully to the Temple, her heart full of devotion and love towards God and a fervent desire to serve Him. The priest was at first greatly astonished, not only at the unusual beauty of the little child, but still more at the devotion she showed in such extreme youth. When her parents had given her in charge to the priest, the latter took her to the Altar, to which there was an ascent of fifteen steps, on the first of which he placed her. Having, in a few words, bade her parents farewell, the little maiden went joyfully and unaided, from the lowest step to the highest, and casting herself down before the Altar, she consecrated herself to the Al mighty with such humility and reverence, that all present were deeply moved. Her consecration differed greatly from that of all other children. Many were brought to the temple only because their parents desired it, and without their own knowledge of the reasons for which it was done. Others wept bitterly at parting with their parents. No other at that tender age, had understood the ceremony, and none had made the consecration with such entire devotion to the Lord.

The presentation of the Virgin, Vittore Carpaccio, 1450-1525)

The Blessed Virgin, however, already gifted with reason, not only consented to the sacrifice thus made by her parents to God, but consecrated herself, entirely and with a happy heart, to His service. How pleasing this sacrifice must have been to the Lord, words are unable to express. It is quite certain that, from the creation of the world until that time, no sacrifice had been so pleasing to Him as that which Mary offered in her own person. Abel, Noah, Aaron, and many more, had sacrificed to the Lord the fruits of the Earth, or dumb brutes; but Mary offered herself. Many parents had consecrated their children to the service of God, but Mary surpassed them all in innocence and grace, in heavenly virtues and gifts; hence, it cannot be doubted that her sacrifice surpassed all others, and was more agreeable to the Almighty. After the consecration, Mary was taken into the dwelling of the maidens destined to serve the Most High, and was numbered among them. There she remained until her marriage with St. Joseph.

Her conduct during this period can be more easily imagined than described; but it is certain that it was more like an angel’s than like that of a human being. Her occupation was prayer, reading, meditation and work. In the works of St. Jerome there is a sermon on the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin, in which the life she led in the Temple is thus described: She endeavored to surpass in goodness all those with whom she dwelt; to be the first in the nightly vigils ; to understand Holy Writ most thoroughly; to be the most humble; to sing the Psalms of David most devoutly; to love God most fervently; to be the most chaste; in a word, to be the first in all virtues, in order to honor the Almighty, and to prove her love to Him. God was the only subject of her conversation. She prayed without ceasing and meditated on the law of the Lord. St. Ambrose, in his instructions to those who had vowed perpetual chastity, gives them Mary as an example, saying emphatically, that her life had been such that it might serve as a model to all. “Mary,” he writes,” was a virgin, not only in body, but also in heart and mind. She was modest in her speech, and humble of heart. She offended no one, had every one’s welfare at heart, avoided pride and loved virtue. Nothing bold was in her gaze, nothing frivolous in her words, nothing that was in the least immodest in all her manners. Her body was the index of her mind, a model of piety. She went not to rest until necessity required it, and when her body rested, her soul remained awake.” This and much more the above mentioned Father writes, in praise of the Blessed Virgin. St. Bonaventure relates a vision in which the Divine Mother said to a holy person: “I arose always in the middle of the night, went to the Altar of the Temple, and presented my homage and my desires to the Almighty.” These desires were for the grace of loving God above all things and with her whole heart; of loving her neighbor for God’s sake; of keeping the Commandments of the Lord, and of hating everything that was displeasing to Him. The same holy teacher says also: “Mary was very solicitous that none of her companions should in the least offend the Lord, but that they should always praise Him and never indulge in idle words. He writes further, that Mary occupied her thoughts with holy contemplations, her mouth with devout prayers; but, at the same time, used her hands in sacred work, and admonished others to do the same.

Presentation of Virgin Mary - Cima da Conegliano circa 1500.

Several Holy Fathers write that the Blessed Virgin, soon after entering the Temple, consecrated her virginity to the Lord. Others, with greater reason, maintain that this had been done before, and as soon as she had been conceived, since she was gifted even then with the full use of her reason. The Holy Fathers Ambrose, Jerome, Rupert, Bernard, and many others, think that the Blessed Virgin was the first who made a vow of chastity, and thus set an example, which many thousands, desiring to serve the Lord more perfectly, have followed and are still following. It is quite certain that the Blessed Virgin, from the first use of her reason until the end of her life, always endeavored to do what she knew would make her more perfect, and thus unite her more closely with the Almighty. Hence it is easy to conclude, that she gathered such a treasure of merits, as no Saint ever did or will possess. St. Bonaventure and St. Bernardine of Sienna apply to her the words of the Proverbs of Solomon: “Many daughters have gathered riches, but thou hast surpassed them all.” Many daughters, they say, means, many souls, many Saints have gathered riches in merits; but Mary surpasses them all, as well in grace, as in virtues and merits. Hence it follows that her glory in heaven is above that of all other Saints; for which reason she is called by the Catholic Church Queen of All Saints. Nothing is more just than that we should duly honor so great a Queen, and invoke her with confidence; for the higher she stands above all other Saints, the more powerful is her intercession with God.

CONSIDERATIONS

In the third year of her life, Mary, the Blessed Virgin, consecrated herself to the service of the Al mighty, and this, not for days or years only, but for ever; for, as long as she lived, she ceased not to serve the Lord. How is it with you? Did you also begin in your tender years to serve the Lord? Or to whom did you dedicate the first years of your life? Ah! confess it with weeping eyes and repentant heart, not to the Lord, but to the world, to the flesh, to Satan, you gave the years of your youth; and perhaps you have not even now made the resolution to serve your God; or, it may be, you think it will be time enough when you are old, though it is unknown to you, whether you will ever count many years. But even had you been assured of this, tell me, do you not deserve to be disowned by the Almighty as a second Cain, since like him, you sacrificed only what was of less value, and not, like the pious Abel, what was the best? God cursed him who took from his flock the meanest for his offering. This curse you also deserve for not having given to the Lord your first and best years, but reserving your old age for Him. Oh! truly you have reason to weep over this wickedness as long as you live. Humbly beg God to pardon you, and resolve, at the same time, to serve Him from this hour most fervently and without ceasing until your end, as the Blessed Virgin did. You have perhaps but a short time more: hence employ every moment in the service of God. The benefit will be yours, and will last through all eternity.  In consecrating herself to the Almighty, the Blessed Virgin gave herself entirely to Him without any reservation. Soul and body, every power of her soul, every member of her body, her whole heart and life, all was given for evermore to the service of the Most High. Doubt less you resolve to-day to serve your Lord most fervently for the future. Consecrate yourself, then, to-day to His service, but without any reservation, your whole heart, your entire life, your soul with all its powers, your entire body with all its members, sacrifice all willingly and for evermore to the Lord. God who desires the whole heart and not a part of it, wishes also your whole soul, your whole body, your entire life. Do you wish to divide your heart and to give one part of it to the Almighty the other to the world and Satan? to serve God with one member of your body, and to offend Him with another? Do you wish to employ your memory to honor God with good thoughts, but to soil your will with wicked desires? Oh! then do not imagine that your sacrifice will be acceptable to God. It will rather be a horror in the eyes of Him who commands us to serve Him alone, and to sacrifice everything to His service. Make to-day, a perfect sacrifice, so that you may, at least in something, follow the Blessed Virgin. And take care that you do not, after the lapse of some time, retract your sacrifice.

HOLY SACRIFICE OF THE MASS, FROM THE RISING OF THE SUN AND EVEN TO IT'S GOING DOWN, MY NAME WILL BE GREAT...

THE PRESENTATION OF BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Greater Double / White Vestments

Missa ‘Salve, sancta parens’

INTROIT:  

(Sedulius) – Salve, sancta parens, enixa puerperal Regem: qui caelum, terramque regit in saecula saeculorum.

Ps. 44: 2

Eructavit cor meum verbum bonum : dico ego opera mea Regi.

Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto. Sicut erat in principio et nunc et semper et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.

Salve, Sancta Parens…

Hail, holy Mother, thou who didst bring forth the King who rules heaven and earth...

Hail, holy Mother, thou who didst bring forth the King who rules heaven and earth for ever and ever.

Ps. 44: 2

My heart hath uttered a good word : I speak my works to the King. 

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Hail, Holy Mother…

COLLECT

O God, who on this day didst vouchsafe that blessed Mary Ever-Virgin, the dwelling-place of the Holy Ghost, should be presented in the Temple: grant, we beseech thee; that by her intercession we may be found worthy to be presented unto thee in the temple of thy glory.  Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.

EPISTLE: Ecclesiasticus 24, 14-16

Lesson from the Book of Wisdom

From the  beginning, and before the world, was I created, and unto the world to come I shall not cease to be; and in the holy dwelling-place I have ministered before Him. And so was I established in Sion, and in the holy city likewise I rested, and my power was in Jerusalem. And I took root in an honorable people, and in the portion of my God His inheritance, and my abode is in the full assembly of the saints.

Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis!

GRADUAL

Benedícta et venerábilis es, Virgo María; quæ sine tactu pudóris invénta es Mater Salvatóris.

V. Virgo Dei Génitrix, quem totus non capit orbis, in tua se clausit víscera factus homo.

Thou art blessed and venerable, O Virgin Mary, who with purity unstained was found to be the Mother of our Savior.

V. Virgin Mother of God, He whom the whole world was unable to contain enclosed Himself in thy womb, being made man.

ALLELUIA 

Allelúja, allelúja. V. Post partum Virgo invioláta permansísti: Dei Génitrix, intercéde pro nobis. Allelúja.

Alleluia, alleluia. V. After childbirth thou didst still remain a virgin; Mother of God, intercede for us. Alleluia.

GOSPEL: Luke 11: 27-28

The continuation of the holy Gospel according to St. Luke

In illo témpore: Loquénte Jesu ad turbas, extóllens vocem quædam múlier de turba, dixit illi: Beátus venter, qui te portávit, et úbera, quæ suxísti. At ille dixit: Quinímmo beáti, qui áudiunt verbum Dei, et custódiunt illud.

At that time:  It came to pass as Jesus spake to the multitudes, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him:  Blessed is the womb that bare thee and the paps which thou hast sucked.  But he said:  Yea, rather blessed are they which hear the word of God, and keep it.

OFFERTORY: Luke 1: 28 and 42

Ave, María, grátia plena: Dóminus tecum: benedícta tu in muliéribus, et benedíctus fructus ventris tui.

Hail Mary, full of grace:  the Lord is with thee:  blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.

Presentation of Virgin Mary - Master of Wilten, 15th century

SECRET

Tua, Dómine, propitiatióne, et beátæ Maríæ semper Vírginis intercessióne, ad perpétuam atque præséntem hæc oblátio nobis profíciat prosperitátem et pacem. Per Dóminum nostrum Jesum Christum Fílium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitáte ejúsdem Spíritus Sancti Deus.

We beseech thee, O Lord, that by the bountiful goodness of thy mercy and by the intercession of Blessed Mary Ever-Virgin, these our oblations may be acceptable in thy sight: that we, being delivered in this present life from all adversities, may obtain in that which is to come peace everlasting.  Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.

Preface of the Blessed Virgin Mary

It is Truly meet and just, right and availing unto salvation, that we should at all times and in all places give thanks to thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God: and in veneration of the blessed Mary, ever a virgin, should praise and bless and proclaim Thee. For she conceived Thine only-begotten Son by the overshadowing of the Holy Ghost; and losing not the glory of her virginity, gave to the world the everlasting light, Jesus Christ our Lord. Through whom the angels praise thy majesty, the dominions worship it, and the powers are in awe. The heavens and the heavenly hosts, and the blessed seraphim join together in celebrating their joy. With these we pray Thee join our own voices also, while we say with lowly praise:

SANCTUS, SANCTUS, SANCTUS Dominus Deus Sabaoth. Pleni sunt coeli et terra gloria Tua. Hosanna in excelsis.  Benedictus qui venit in nomine Domini. Hosanna in excelsis.

Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of hosts. Heaven and earth are full of Thy glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he that cometh in the Name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

holy communion Graces

COMMUNION

Blessed is the womb of the Virgin Mary, which bore the Son of the Eternal Father.

POSTCOMMUNION

O Lord, who hast appointed this Holy Sacrament, which we have here received, to be the means of our salvation:  mercifully grant that we which have offered thee our gifts unto thy divine majesty in honor of blessed Mary Ever-Virgin, may be her intercession be preserved both in body and in soul.  Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.

 

SAINT GERTRUDE, VIRGIN – MASS PROPERS

Saint Gertrude by Miguel Cabrera, 1763

      SAINT GERTRUDE, VIRGIN

The Liturgical Year – Ven. Dom Prosper Guéranger

The school which is founded upon the rule of the great Patriarch of the Monks of the West, began with St. Gregory the Great. Such was the independent action of the Holy Spirit who guided it, that in it women have prophesied as well as men. It is enough to mention St. Hildegarde and St. Gertrude, with whom we may fitly associate St. Mechtilde and St. Frances of Rome. Any one who has tried modern methods will find, on making acquaintance another atmosphere, and is urged onward by a gentle authority which is never felt, but which allows no rest. He will not find that subtlety, that keen and learned analysis, he has met with elsewhere, and which rather weary than aid the soul. The pious and learned Father Faber has brought out, with his characteristic sagacity, the advantages of that form of spirituality which gives the soul breadth and liberty, and so produces in many persons effects which some modern methods fail of producing No one, says he, can be at all acquainted with “the old-fashioned Benedictine school of spiritual writers, without perceiving and admiring the beautiful liberty of spirit which pervades and possesses their whole mind. It is just what we should expect from an order of such matured traditions. St. Gertrude is a fair specimen of them. She is thoroughly Benedictine A spirit of breadth, a spirit of liberty, that is the Catholic spirit; and it was eminently the badge of the old Benedictine ascetics. Modern writers for the most part have tightened things, and have lost by it instead of gaining. By frightening people, they have lessened devotion in extent; and by overstraining it, they have lowered it in degree.

In any case, there are many ways, and every way is good which brings men back to God by a thorough conversion of heart. But we are sure that those who may be led to commit themselves to the guidance of a saint of the old school will not lose their time; and that if they meet with less philosophy and less psychology on their way, they will be subdued by the simplicity and authority of her language, and be moved and melted as they contrast their own souls with that of their saintly guide. And this blessed revolution will take place in almost every, soul that follows St. Gertrude in the week of Exercises she proposes to them, if only they really desire to draw yet more closely the ties which unite them to God, if their intention be fixed aright, and their souls truly recollected in God. We may almost venture to assure such persons that they will come forth from these Exercises transformed in their whole being. They will return to them again and again with ever increasing pleasure; for they will have no discouraging memory of fatigue, nor of the slightest constraint laid upon their liberty of spirit. They will feel confounded, indeed, to be admitted so near the inmost heart of so great a saint; but they will also feel that they have been created for the same end as that saint, and that they must bestir themselves, and quit all easy, dangerous ways, which lead to perdition.

And if we be asked whence comes that wonderful influence which our Saint exercises over all who listen to her, our answer would be: from her surpassing holiness. She does not prove the possibility of spiritual movement and advance; she moves and advances. A blessed soul, sent down from heaven to dwell awhile with men, and speaking the language of the heavenly country in this land of exile, would doubtless, utterly transform those who heard its speech. Now St. Gertrude was admitted to such familiar converse with the Son of God, that her words have just the accent of such a soul; and this is why they have been and are like winged arrows, which pierce and wound all within their range. The understanding is enlarged and enlightened by her pure and elevated doctrine, and yet St. Gertrude never lectures or preaches ; the heart is touched and melted, and yet St. Gertrude speaks only to God ; the soul judges itself, condemns itself, renews itself by compunction, and yet St. Gertrude has made no effort to move or convict it.

And if we ask what is the source of the special blessing attached to the language of St. Gertrude, the answer is, that it blesses because it is so impregnated with the divine Word, not only with the revelations which St. Gertrude received from her heavenly Spouse, but with the sacred Scriptures and the liturgy of the Church. This holy daughter of the cloister drank in light and life day by day from the sources of all true contemplation, from the very fountain of living waters which gashes forth from the psalms and the inspired words of the divine Office. Her every sentence shows how exclusively her soul was nourished with this heavenly food. She so lived into the liturgy of the Church that we continually find in her revelations that the Saviour discloses to her the mysteries of heaven, and the Mother of God and the saints hold converse with her on some Antiphon, or Response, or Introit, which the Saint is singing with delight, and of which she is striving to feel all the force and the sweetness.

Hence that unceasing flow of unaffected poetry which seems to have become quite natural to her, and that hallowed enthusiasm which raises the literary beauty of her writings almost to the height of mystical inspiration. This child of the thirteenth century, buried in a monastery of Suabia, preceded Dante in the paths of spiritual poetry. Sometimes her soul breaks forth into tender and touching elegy; sometimes the fire which consumes her bursts forth in transports of fervour; sometimes her feelings clothe themselves quite instinctively in a dramatic form; sometimes she stops short in her sublimest flights, and she who almost rivals the seraphim, descends to earth, but only to prepare herself for a still higher flight. It is as though there had been an unending struggle between the humility which held her prostrate in the dust and the aspirations of her soul, panting after Jesus, who was drawing her, and who had lavished on her such exceeding love. In our opinion the writings of St. Gertrude lose nothing of their indescribable beauty, even when placed beside those of St. Teresa. Nay, we think that the saint of Germany is not unfrequently superior to her sister of Spain. The latter, full of impetuous ardour, has not, it is true, the tinge of pensive melancholy which colours the writings of the former; but St. Gertrude knew Latin so well, and was so profoundly versed in the letter and the spirit of the holy Scriptures, that we do not hesitate to pronounce her style superior in richness and in force to that of St. Teresa.

St. Gertrude the Great

Still we pray the reader not to be frightened at the thought of being placed under the guidance of a seraph, when his conscience tells him that he has still so much to do in the purgative way, before he can venture to enter upon paths which may never open to him on earth. Let him simply listen to St. Gertrude, let him fix his eye upon her, and have faith in the end she proposes to him. When the holy Church puts in our mouths the language of the Psalms, she knows full well that that language is often far beyond the feelings of our soul; but if we wish to bring ourselves up to the level of these divine hymns, our best method is certainly to repeat them frequently in faith and humility, and await the transformation they will assuredly effect. St. Gertrude detaches us gently from ourselves, and brings us to Jesus by going before us herself, and by drawing us after her, though at a great distance. She goes straight to the heart of her divine Spouse, and she might well do so; but will it not be an inestimable blessing if she bring us to his feet like Magdalen, penitent and transformed by love?

Even when she writes for her sisters alone, let us not suppose that these exquisite pages are useless to those of us who are living in the midst of the world. The religious life, when expounded by such an interpreter, is a spectacle as instructive as it is striking. Need we say that the practice of the precepts of the Gospel becomes more easy to those who have well pondered and admired the practice of its counsels? What is the Imitation of Christ but a book written by a monk for the use of monks; and yet who is not familiar with its teaching? How many seculars delight in the writings of St. Teresa; and yet the holy Carmelitess makes the religious life the one theme of her teaching.

We will not now speak of her wonderful style of expression. We are so unused to the decided and elevated language of the ages of faith, that some readers, accustomed to modern books alone, may be startled, and even pained, by St. Gertrude. But what is the remedy for this inconvenience? If we have unlearned the language of that antique piety which fashioned saints, surely our best way is to learn it again as soon as we can; and St. Gertrude will give us wonderful help in doing so.

The list of the devoted admirers of her writings would be long and imposing. But there is an authority far higher still—that of the Church herself. That mother of the faithful, ever guided by the Holy Ghost, has in her holy liturgy set her seal upon St. Gertrude. The Saint herself, and the spirit which animated her, are there for ever recommended and glorified in the eyes of all Christians, in virtue of the solemn judgment contained in the Office of her festival.

The life of Gertrude the Great, as she has merited to be distinguished among the Saints of the same name, was humble and obscure. (1256—1302). At five years of age she entered the Abbey of Helfta near Eisleben, and there she remained hidden in the secret of God’s face. For several centuries, by an error which has also found its way into the Legend of the feast, she was confounded with the Abbess Gertrude of Hackeborn, who governed the monastery during our Saint’s life-time, and was herself favoured with divine gifts. It was not until Gertrude’s sublime Revelations, contained in the five books of the Legatus divinae pietatis, or Legate of divine love, had at length been published, that in 1677 her name was inscribed in the Roman Martyrology. In the following century (1738) Clement XII, ordered her feast to be celebrated, as a Double, by the whole Church. The West Indies chose her as patroness; and a town in New Mexico bears her name.

In order to furnish the faithful with an expression of their piety towards St. Gertrude, we offer them the following beautiful Hymn, Antiphon and Collect, taken from the Benedictine Breviary.

O, Gertrude, shrine of the Divinity, united to the Spouse of virgins; grant us to celebrate the chaste love of thy espousals. Scarcely hadst thou completed thy fourth year when thou wast espoused to Christ, and didst flee to the shelter of the cloister. Thou didst put from thee the breast of thy nurse, and seek the divine kiss of thy Spouse. Like a fair spotless lily thou dost give forth a perfume which gladdens heaven; and the splendour of thy virgin beauty draweth to thee the King of Saints. He who dwelleth in the bosom of the Father, surrounded with everlasting glory, deigns to take his repose in thy love. Thou woundest Jesus with love; and he woundeth thee in return, and deeply graveth on thy heart the marks of his sacred Passion. O peerless love, O wondrous interchange; he it is who breatheth in thy heart, and thy life hangeth on the breath of his mouth. Let the blessed choirs of virgins sing thy praise, O Jesus, Spouse of virgins; and equal glory be ascribed to Father and to Paraclete. Amen.

ST. GERTRUDE

ANTIPHON

O most worthy spouse of Christ, on whom the prophetic light hath shone, whose heart an apostolic zeal inflamed, whose head the wreath of virgins hath crowned, whom the glowing fire of divine love consumed.

PRAYER

O God, who hast prepared for thyself a dwelling-place of delights in the most pure heart of the blessed virgin Gertrude ; deign, we beseech thee, through her merits and intercession, to wipe away all stains from our hearts, that they may become meet abodes of thy divine majesty. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O revealer of the Sacred Heart, what better prayer could we offer in thine honour than to say with thee to the Son of the Blessed Virgin:

O thou my soul’s calm untroubled Light! 0 dawn of morning, soft-gleaming with thy beauteous light, become in me the perfect day. 0 my Love, who dost not only enlighten but deify, come unto me in all thy might; come and gently melt my whole being. May all that is of me be destroyed utterly; may I wholly pass into thee, so that I may no more find myself in time, but may be already and most intimately united to thee for all eternity. Thou hast first loved me; it is thou who hast chosen me, and not I who have first chosen thee. Thou art he who of his own accord runneth towards his thirsting creature; and on thy kingly brow gleams the fair splendour of the everlasting light, how me thy countenance, and let me gaze upon thy beauty. How mild and full of charms is that face, all radiant with the rosy light of the dawn of the divine Sun! How can the spark live and glow far from the fire that gave it being? Or how can the drop of water abide far from the spring from whence it was taken? 0 compassionate Love, why hast thou loved a creature so defiled and so covered with shame, but that thou hast willed to render it all fair in thee? O thou delicate flower of the Virgin Mary, thy goodness and thy tender mercy have won and ravished my heart. O Love, my glorious noontide, to take my rest in thee, gladly would I die a thousand deaths. O Charity, O Love, at the hour of my death thou wilt sustain me with thy words, more gladdening far than choicest wine. Thou wilt then be my way, my unobstructed way, that I may wander no more nor stray. Thou wilt aid me then, O love, thou queen of heaven; thou wilt clear my way before me to those fair and fertile pastures hidden in the divine wilderness, and my soul shall be inebriate with bliss; for there shall I see the face of the Lamb, my Spouse and my God. 0 Love, who art God, thou art my best beloved possession. Without thee neither earth nor heaven could excite in me one hope, nor draw forth one desire: vouchsafe to effect and perfect within me that union which thou thyself desirest: may it be the end, the crown, and consummation of my being. In the countenance of my God thy light beameth soft and fair as the evening star. O thou fair and solemn Evening, let me see thy ray when my eye shall close in death. O Love, thou much-loved Evening-tide, at that dread moment let the sacred flame, which burneth evermore in thy divine essence, consume all the stains of my mortal life. 0 thou my calm and peaceful Evening, when the evening-tide of my life shall come, give me to sleep in thee in tranquil sleep, and to taste that blissful rest which thou hast prepared in thyself for them that love thee. With thy serene, enchanting look vouchsafe to order all things and prepare all things for my everlasting espousal. O Love, be thou unto me an eventide so bright and calm, that my ravished soul may bid a loving farewell to its body, and return to God who gave it, and rest in peace beneath thy beloved shadow!

HOLY SACRIFICE OF THE MASS, FROM THE RISING OF THE SUN AND EVEN TO IT'S GOING DOWN, MY NAME WILL BE GREAT...     

        November 16

        St Gertrude, Virgin

      Double/White Vestments

        Missa ‘Dilexisti’

INTROIT – Psalm 44: 8, 2

Dilexisti justitiam, et odisti iniquitatem: propterea unxit te Deus, Deus tuus, oleo lætitiæ præ consortibus tuis. Ps. Eructavit cor meum verbum bonum: dico ego opera mea Regi. Gloria Patri

Thou hast loved justice and hated iniquity: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. Ps. My heart hath uttered a good word: I speak my works to the King. Glory be to the Father.

St. Gertrude the Great - November 16

COLLECT

O God, Who didst prepare for Thyself a pleasant dwelling-place in the heart of blessed Gertrude, do Thou, through her merits and intercession, mercifully wipe away from our hearts every stain of sin, and grant us to enjoy her companionship. Through our Lord.

EPISTLE – II Corinthians 10: 17-18; 11: 1-2

Brethren: he that glory, let him glory in the Lord. For not that he that commendeth himself is approved, but he whom God commendeth. Would to God you could bear with some little of my folly, but do bear with me. For I am jealous of you with the jealousy of God. For I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.

GRADUAL – Psalm 44: 5, 15, 16

With thy comeliness and thy beauty set out, proceed prosperously, and reign. Because of truth, and meekness and justice: and thy right hand shall conduct thee wonderfully.

ALLELUIA

Alleluia, alleluia. After her shall virgins be brought to the king: her neighbours shall be brought to thee with gladness. Alleluia.

Parable of the Ten Virgins

GOSPEL – Matthew 25: 1-13

At that time, Jesus spoke to His disciples this parable: The kingdom of Heaven shall be like to ten virgins, who taking their lamps went out to meet the bridegroom and the bride. And five of them were foolish, and five wise: but the five foolish having taken their lamps, did not take oil with them: but the wise took oil in their vessels with the lamps. And the bridegroom tarrying, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made: Behold the bridegroom cometh, go ye forth to meet him. Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise: Give us of your oil, for our lamps are gone out. The wise answered, saying: Lest perhaps there be not enough for us and for you, go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. Now whilst they went to buy, the bridegroom came: and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage, and the door was shut. But at last came also the other virgins, saying: Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answering, said: Amen I say to you, I know you not. Watch ye therefore, because you know not the day nor the hour.

OFFERTORY – Psalm 44: 10

The daughters of kings are in thine honour, the queen stood on thy right hand in gilded clothing, surrounded with variety.

St. Gertrude - German Benedictine, mystic, and theologian.

SECRET

May the offering of Thy consecrated people be accepted by Thee, O Lord, in honour of Thy Saints, by whose merits it knoweth that it hath received aid in time of trouble. Through our Lord.

COMMON PREFACE

It is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation that we should at all times and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, eternal God: through Christ our Lord. Through Whom the Angels praise Thy Majesty, Dominations worship, Powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the Heavenly hosts together with the blessed Seraphim in triumphant chorus unite to celebrate it. Together with them we entreat Thee, that Thou mayest bid our voices also to be admitted, while we say in lowly praise:

AT THE SANCTUS - AFTER PENTECOST

COMMUNION – Matthew 25: 4-6

The five wise virgins took oil in their vessels with the lamps: and at midnight there was a cry made: Behold the bridegroom cometh: go ye forth to meet Christ the Lord.

POSTCOMMUNION

Thou hast filled Thy household, O Lord, with sacred gifts; ever comfort us, we beseech Thee, through her intercession whose festival we celebrate. Through our Lord.