Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Pictures of a Mural of the Crowning of the Virgin from Malaga, Spain

The artist Raul Berzosa has sent me the following pictures of his recently completed project. It is of the ceiling of the Oratory of the Brotherhood of Our Lady of Sorrows, Málaga, Spain. It took him a year to paint, the work, all in acrylic; the total size of the roof is 12.20 meters long and 9.62 meters wide, with a total of 130 square meters approximately. For moroe information, you can visit his website, http://www.raulberzosa.com/. This is a spectacular achievement, and it is good to see work of this sort being commissioned and executed. I hope there will be more. If I have one point to make, it is my usual one that my personal taste is to see more muted colour and shadow with the brightness concentrated on the principle foci of interest in the baroque fashion. However, I should state that I have seen only the photographs, and the work in situ. For a work like this the impact can be very different when viewed from where it is intended to be seen - this would be viewed ordinarily from a great distance away by observers looking up from the floor. The artist has no doubt designed it with this with this in mind.

Music Competition for Young Composers

This just came in from Joseph Shaw of the Latin Mass Society of England and Wales. Matthew Schellhorn, a professional musician very active in promoting the traditional liturgy in England, has recently created a prize for a new composition, for a ‘Latin Eucharistic text’.
I’m delighted to announce that the Latin Mass Society is supporting the Schellhorn Prize. This will be awarded to the best ‘piece for a cappella SATB choir using any Latin Eucharistic text’ submitted, between now and Ash Wednesday of next year (18th February), by a composer no older than 26 at the closing date. The prize is £500, and the piece will be performed as part of the Latin Mass Society's Easter Triduum liturgies in the year it is submitted. 
Full details are here.

Photopost Request: Christ the King (EF)

As you know, the feast of Christ the King in the older calendar is celebrated this Sunday, so we will be doing a photopost for the feast. Please send in your photos to photopost@newliturgicalmovement.org.

Original Bueronese Murals for Sale

NLM reader James Vogel has contacted me to let me know the availability of an original set of 15 murals painted early in the 20th century.

The Beuronese style began in the 19th century at a Benedictine monastery in the town of Beuron in Germany. Monks trained there later moved to the US and so there are excellent examples of the style in the US, particularly at Conception Abbey in Missouri. It was a reaction against the high naturalism of the period and looked to ancient Egyptian art for its inspiration for an idealized form. This Egyptian influence is more obvious in the original works by Desiderius Lenz, one of the very earliest artists in this style.

These ones were painted by Fr. Bonaventure Ostendarp from St. Vincent’s Archabbey in Latrobe, PA, for St. Mary’s Church in McKeesport, PA. When St. Mary’s was closed in the 1990’s, the murals were sold to Our Lady of Fatima Chapel in Carnegie, PA. With the congregation of Our Lady of Fatima relocating to a new church, these murals are once again available for purchase. As I look at them, they strike me as less idealized than the classic Beuronese art of say Lenz (having more of a look of illustrations), but nevertheless interesting and worthy of interest.

The common theme is “the Life of the Virgin“ ”. In particular, they depict the Vision of King David and the Prophet Isaias, the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin, the Presentation, the Marriage of the Virgin, the Annunciation, the Visitation, the Nativity of Our Lord, the Adoration of the Magi, the Purification, the Flight to Egypt, Christ in the Temple, the Marriage Feast of Cana, the Meeting of Jesus and Mary at Calvary, the Descent of the Holy Ghost, and the Death of the Virgin.

They are all oil on canvas, approximately 82 by 73 inches, including the frames. They are all in good condition. More photos and details are available upon request. The asking price is $150,000 or best offer for the set; shipping is the responsibility of the buyer. Those interested should telephone James Vogel (of Angelus Press in Kansas) on 412-330-9801 or email him: jvogel@angeluspress.org. Let’s hope they end up in good hands!

RIP: Helen Hull Hitchcock, 1939-2014

In your charity, please pray for the blessed repose of the soul of Helen Hull Hitchcock, who died yesterday, October 20th, at the age of 75. Helen was editor of Adoremus Bulletin, the monthly publication of the Adoremus – Society for the Renewal of the Sacred Liturgy, which she cofounded in 1995 with Fathers Joseph Fessio, S.J. and Jerry Pokorski. She was also the founding director of Women for Faith & Family and editor of its quarterly journal, Voices. She has published many articles and essays in a variety of Catholic journals, and was the author/editor of The Politics of Prayer: Feminist Language and the Worship of God (Ignatius Press, 1992), a collection of essays on issues involved in translation.

Helen is survived by her husband James Hitchcock, professor emeritus of history at St. Louis University and author of The Recovery of the Sacred: Reforming the Reformed Liturgy (Ignatius Press, 1995), and their four daughters and six grandchildren. May they have the comforts and consolation of faith in the risen Lord Jesus Christ.

Photo: www.adoremus.org.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Classics of the Liturgical Movement: The Soul of the Apostolate

One of my all-time favorite spiritual books is The Soul of the Apostolate by Dom Jean-Baptiste Chautard, O.C.S.O. It was St. Pius X’s bedside reading, which already tells you a lot about the quality of Chautard (and, frankly, about the quality of Pius X, who, were he alive today, would not touch a book by Kasper, Martini, or other neo-modernists except to condemn their propositions—but I digress). Of the many pages where Dom Chautard touches on ways of living the Church’s liturgical life more profoundly, here is an exquisite taste of his wisdom, at once utterly practical and motivated by the highest and purest ideals, the ideals of the original liturgical movement that we would do well to recover for ourselves today. While it is clear that Dom Chautard in this passage has the clergy foremost in mind, his counsel applies analogously to any Catholic involved in a liturgical apostolate, such as serving or singing the chant, or any member of the faithful who simply wants to participate more actively (in the right sense) in the mysteries of Christ.

Without further ado, let us hear what the gracious Abbot has to say:
          To do well my liturgical work is a gift of Your bounty, O my God! Omnipotens et misericors Deus, de cujus munere venit ut tibi a fidelibus tuis digne et laudabiliter serviatur. [Almighty and merciful God, whose gift it is that the faithful serve Thee worthily and laudably.] O Lord, please grant me this gift. I want to remain in adoration all during my liturgical function. That sums up all the methods in one word.
          My will casts down my heart at the feet of the Majesty of God and keeps it there. All its work is now contained in the three words, digne, attente, devote [worthily, attentively, devoutly] from the prayer Aperi, and they most aptly express what must be the attitude of my body, of my mind, and of my heart.
          DIGNE. A respectful position and bearing, the precise pronunciation of the words, slowing down over the more important parts. Careful observance of the rubrics. My tone of voice, the way in which I make signs of the Cross, genuflections, etc.; my body itself: all will go to show not only that I know Whom I am addressing, and what I am saying, but also that my heart is in what I am doing. What an apostolate I can sometimes exercise [this way]!
 Then, Dom Chautard adds a substantial footnote to this point:
          Apostolate or Scandal. There are many souls who look at religion through a hazy intellectualism or ritualism, and to such persons, a whole sermon by a second-rate priest has far less meaning than the apostolate of a genuine priest whose great faith, piety, and compunction shine forth in his ministrations at a baptism, funeral, or, above all, at Mass. Words and rites are arrows that strike deep into such hearts. When the liturgy is thus lived, they see in it the certitude of the mystery expressed. The invisible begins to exist for them, and they are prompted to invoke Jesus, whom they hardly know at all, but with whom they sense that the priest is in close communication. But only weakening or total loss of their faith follows when the spectacle before them merely turns their stomach, and moves them to cry out: "Why, you can't tell me that priest believes in a God or fears Him! Look at the way he says Mass, administers baptism, recites his prayers, and performs his ceremonies!" What responsibilities! Who would dare to maintain that such scandals will not be visited with the strictest of judgment?
          How the faithful are influenced by the way a priest acts: whether it be that he displays deeply reverential fear, or an insolent nonchalance in his sacred functions!
          Once, when studying in a university graduate school, into which no clerical influence entered at all, I chanced to observe a priest reciting his breviary, he being unaware that he was the object of my attention. His bearing, full of respect and religion, was a revelation to me, and produced in me an urgent need to pray from then on, and to pray in the way this priest was praying. The Church appeared to me, concretized, so to speak, in this worthy minister, in communion with his God.
Dom Chautard’s meditation on the three words digne, attente, devote continues:
          In the courts of earthly kings, a simple servant considers the least function to be something great, and unconsciously takes on a majestic and solemn air in performing it. Cannot I acquire some of that distinctive bearing which will show itself by my state of mind and by the dignity of my bearing when I carry out my duties as member of the guard of honor of the King of Kings and of the God of all Majesty?
          ATTENTE. My mind will be eager to go foraging through the sacred words and rites in order to get everything that will nourish my heart. Sometimes my attention will consider the literal sense of the texts, whether I follow every phase or whether, while going on with my recitation of the prayers, I take time to meditate on some word that has struck my attention, until such time as I feel the need to seek the honey of devotion in some other flower: in either case, I am fulfilling the precept mens concordet voci [let mind and voice agree—from the Rule of Saint Benedict].
          At other times, my intellect may occupy itself with the mystery of the day or the principal idea of the liturgical season. But the part played by the mind will remain in the background compared to the role of the will. The mind will serve only as the will’s source of supply, helping it to remain in adoration or to return to that state.
          As soon as distractions arise it shall be my will to return to the act of adoration; but I shall make this movement of the will without irritation or harshness, without a sudden violent jerk, but peacefully (since everything that is done with Your aid, Lord Jesus, is peaceful and quiet), yet powerfully (since every genuine desire to cooperate with Your aid, Lord, is powerful and strong).
          DEVOTE. This is the most important point. Everything comes back to the need of making our Office and all our liturgical functions acts of piety, and, consequently, acts that come from the heart. “Haste kills all devotion.” Such is the principle laid down by St. Francis de Sales in talking of the Breviary, and it applies a fortiori to the Mass, Hence. I shall make it a hard and fast rule to devote around half an hour to my Mass in order to ensure a devout recitation not only of the Canon but of all the other parts as well. I shall reject without pity all pretexts for getting through this, the principal act of my day, in a hurry. If I have the habit of mutilating certain words or ceremonies, I shall apply myself, and go over these faulty places very slowly and carefully, even exaggerating my exactitude for a while.
          With all due proportion, I shall also apply this resolution to all my other liturgical functions: administrations of the Sacraments, Benediction, Burials, and so on. As far as the Breviary is concerned, I shall carefully decide in advance when I am to say my Office. When that time comes, I shall compel myself, cost what it may, to drop everything else. At any price, I want my recitation of the Office to be a real prayer from the heart. O my Divine Mediator! Fill my heart with detestation for all haste in those things where I stand in Your place, or act in the name of the Church! Fill me with the conviction that haste paralyzes that great Sacramental, the Liturgy, and makes impossible that spirit of prayer without which, no matter how zealous a priest I may appear to be on the outside, I would be lukewarm, or perhaps worse, in Your estimation. Burn into my inmost heart those words so full of terror: “Cursed be he that doth the work of God deceitfully” (Jer 48:10).
          Sometimes I will let my heart soar, and take in by a panoramic synthesis of Faith, the general meaning of the mystery which the liturgical Cycle calls to mind; and I will feed my soul with this broad view. At other times, I will make my Office a long, lingering act of Faith or Hope, Desire or Regret, Oblation or Love. Then again, just to remain, in simplicity, LOOKING at God will be enough. By this I mean a loving and continuous contemplation of a mystery, of a perfection of God, of one of Your titles, my Jesus, of Your Church, my own nothingness, my faults, my needs, or else my dignity as a Christian, as a priest, as a religious. Vastly different is this simple “looking” from an act of the intellect in the course of theological studies. This “look” will increase Faith, but will give even greater and more rapid growth to Love. It is a reflection, no doubt a pale one, but still a reflection of the beatific vision, this “looking” and it is the fulfillment of what You promised even here below to pure and fervent souls: “Blessed are the clean of heart for they shall see God.”
          And thus every ceremony will become a restful change because it will bring my soul a real breathing spell and relieve it from the stifling press of occupations. Holy Liturgy, what sweet fragrance you will bring into my soul by your various “functions.” Far from being a slavish burden, these functions will become one of the greatest consolations of my life. How could it be otherwise when thanks to your constant reminders I am ever coming back to the fact of my dignity as a child and ambassador of the Church, as member and minister of Jesus Christ, and am ever being more and more closely united to Him Who is the “Joy of the elect.”
          By my union with Him I shall learn to get profit out of the crosses of this mortal life, and to sow the seeds of my eternal happiness and by my liturgical life, which is far more effective than any apostolate, I will see that other souls have been drawn to follow after me in the ways of salvation and sanctity.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

A Marian Pilgrimage in Hungary

On October 11th, His Excellency Lajos Varga, auxiliary bishop of the diocese of Vác in Hungary, celebrated a Pontifical High Mass for the 5th time at Hungary’s Franciscan-run national Marian shrine, Mátraverebély – Szentkút, for the conclusion of the annual traditional pilgrimage “Peregrinatio Fidei”. Each year the faithful in Hungary who are attached to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite come from all over the country, to pray at this beautiful shrine of the Most Holy Virgin Mary, Queen of Hungary. The assistant priest was Fr. Ervin Gellért Kovács O. Praem, the deacon was Fr. Dénes Takács, pastor of Jánok Slovakia, and the subdeacon was brother Csaba Frigyes Orbán O. Pream. Both Norbertines come from the Priory of Gödöllő. The Budapest EF community’s altar boys served the mass, with music provided by the schola of the Capitulum Laicorum Sancti Michaelis Archangeli. A group of knights from the Militia Templi also attended as well. In the afternoon, Vespers was sung, followed by the Litany of Loreto, and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction. (Photos courtesy of Mr Bertalan Kiss and the Capitulum Laicorum Sancti Michaelis Archangeli; click link for more photos)

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Photopost: Reader Photographs of Recent Events

We are always very glad to receive photographs of your liturgical events, apart from those which we specifically request for major feasts, be they OF, EF, or Eastern Rite. Here are some from three different recent submissions.

Solemn Mass on the feast of the Maternity of the Virgin Mary
Holy Name, Brooklyn, New York
Courtesy of our friend Arrys Ortanez; click here to see the rest of the photostream. Holy Name recently underwent a complete and magnificent de-wreckovation.

The Feast of St Luke the Evangelist

Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a narration of the things that have been accomplished among us, according as they have delivered them unto us, who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word; it seemed good to me also, having diligently attained to all things from the beginning, to write to thee in order, most excellent Theophilus, that thou may know the verity of those words in which thou hast been instructed. (The Gospel of St Luke 1, 1-4)

A blessed feast day to all artists and doctors. Sancte Luca, ora pro nobis!

Friday, October 17, 2014

“Fearless Heralds of the Truth” - The Third Day of a Synod, from the 1595 Pontifical of Clement VIII

The third day of the synod begins as the first two. After Mass, a faldstool is placed before the altar, and the bishop, in cope and precious miter, accompanied by deacon and subdeacon, kneels before the altar, and intones the same antiphon as on the first day: “Exáudi nos, Dómine, quoniam benigna est misericordia tua: secundum multitúdinem miseratiónum tuárum réspice nos, Domine. – Hear us, o Lord, for kindly is Thy mercy; according to the multitude of Thy mercies look upon us, o Lord.” The choir continues the antiphon, followed by the whole of Psalm 68, “Save me o God, for the waters have entered unto my soul”, during which the bishop sits until the psalm is finished and the antiphon repeated.

The bishop then turns to the altar and says:
Let us pray. Crying out to Thee, o Lord, with the cry of our heart, we ask as one, that, strengthened by the regard of Thy grace, we may become fearless heralds of the truth, and be able to speak Thy word with all confidence. Through our Lord Jesus Christ etc.
All answer “Amen”, and the bishop adds a second prayer.
Let us pray. Almighty and everlasting God, who in the sacred prophecy of Thy word, did promise that where two or three would gather in Thy name, Thou wouldst be in their midst, in Thy mercy be present in our assembly, and enlighten our hearts, that we may in no way wander from the good of Thy mercy, but rather hold to the righteous path of Thy justice in all matters. Through our Lord Jesus Christ etc.
The bishop now sings, “Oremus”, the deacon “Flectamus genua”, and the subdeacon, after a pause, “Levate”, after which the bishop sings this prayer.
O God, who take heed to Thy people with forgiveness, and rule over them with love, grant the spirit of wisdom to those to whom Thou hast given to rule over discipline; that the shepherds may take eternal joy from the good progress of holy sheep. Through our Lord Jesus Christ etc.
The deacon then sings the following Gospel, Matthew 18, 15-22, with the normal ceremonies of a Pontifical Mass.
At that time: Jesus said to His disciples: If thy brother shall offend against thee, go, and rebuke him between thee and him alone. If he shall hear thee, thou shalt gain thy brother. And if he will not hear thee, take with thee one or two more: that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may stand. And if he will not hear them: tell the church. And if he will not hear the church, let him be to thee as the heathen and publican. Amen I say to you, whatsoever you shall bind upon earth, shall be bound also in heaven; and whatsoever you shall loose upon earth, shall be loosed also in heaven. Again I say to you, that if two of you shall consent upon earth, concerning anything whatsoever they shall ask, it shall be done to them by My Father who is in heaven. For where there are two or three gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them. Then came Peter unto Him and said: Lord, how often shall my brother offend against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? Jesus saith to him: I say not to thee, till seven times; but till seventy times seven times.
The First Vatican Council
As on the previous two days, the bishop now kneels to intone the hymn Veni Creator Spiritus, which is continued by the choir, after which he sits at a chair which is set up facing the assembly, and addresses it. A brief model for his address is given, accompanied by a rubric that he himself, or a “learned and suitable man” appointed by him to this task, may address the synod with words more appropriate to the circumstances for which it was called.
Venerable and most beloved brethren, it is fitting that all things which have not been done properly, or as fully as they ought, in regard to the duties of ecclesiastics, and the priestly ministries, and canonical sanctions, because of various distractions, or (which we cannot deny) our own and others’ idleness, should be sought out by the unanimous consent and will of us all, and humbly recited before your charity; and thus, whatever is in need of correction may be brought to a better estate by the help of the Lord. And if anyone be displeased by what is said, let him not hesitate to bring the matter before your charity with kindliness and gentility, so that all which is established or renewed by this our assembly, may be kept and held in the harmony of holy peace by all together, without contradiction, to the increase of all our eternal blessedness.
There are then read out the constitutions put forth for the approval of the synod (presumably those which were voted upon the previous day), which are confirmed by those assembled. The bishop sits, and commends himself to the prayers of all present; the names of all those who are supposed to be present are read out, and each answers “Adsum – Present.” Notice is taken of those who are not present, so that they may be fined by the bishop.

In the Pontifical, there follows an immensely long model sermon, over 1000 words in Latin, in which the bishop reminds the priests of their many duties, both spiritual (“Receive the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ with all reverence and fear.”) and temporal (“Let your churches be well decorated and clean.”) The bishop then says another prayer.
O Lord, the human conscience hath not such strength that it can endure the judgments of Thy will without offense; and therefore, because Thy eyes see our imperfection, deem as perfect that which we desire to conclude, merciful God, with the end of perfect justice. We have asked for Thee to come to us in the beginning, we hope in this end to have Thee forgive what we have judged wrongly; to wit, that Thou spare our ignorance, forgive our error, and grant, though the prayers now completed, perfect efficacy to the work. And since we grow faint from the sting of conscience, lest ignorance draw us into error, or hasty willfulness steer justice wrong, we ask this, we beseech Thee, that if we have brought upon ourselves any offense in the celebration of this synod, that we may know we are forgiven by Thy mercy. And since we are about to dismiss this synod, let us be first released from every bond of our sins, as forgiveness followeth transgressors, and eternal rewards follow those that confess Thee. Through Christ our Lord. R. Amen.
The bishop gives the Pontifical blessing and proclaims an indulgence. The archdeacon then sings “Let us depart in peace”, and all answer “In the name of Christ.” All rise and accompany the bishop back to his residence.

Program of Events for "Populus Summorum Pontificum" Next Weekend in Rome and Norcia

The Populus Summorum Pontificum pilgrimage will take place next weekend in Rome and Norcia, with a large number of liturgical events scheduled from October 23-26. A flyer with all the information in English can be downloaded here, and a map with the locations of the various events can be consulted here.

Thursday, October 23, 7:15 pm
At the F.S.S.P. parish of Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini, Solemn Pontifical Vespers, presided over by His Grace Archbishop Guido Pozzo, Secretary of the Ecclesia Dei Commission. The musical service will be provided by a choir of seminarians of the Institute of the Good Shepherd, directed by Fr. Matthieu Raffray.

Friday, October 24, 9:00 a.m.
At the Basilica of Saint Augustine (Sant’Agostino in Campo Marzio), recitation of the Holy Rosary for children to be born, before the statue of the Madonna del Parto. (This statue of the Virgin Mary is still to this day a popular place for women to pray for a safe childbirth, and is constantly covered with colored ribbons and other ex votos left by grateful mothers.)

3:00 p.m.
On the Palatine Hill, the Stations of the Cross of Saint Leonardo of Port-Maurice. Meeting at the beginning of the via di San Bonaventura, near the Arch of Titus. (St Leonard was the great Italian promoter of the Stations of the Cross, and persuaded Pope Benedict XIV to allow him to set the Stations up in the Colosseum. The large cross which he placed in the middle of the ancient arena was later removed to the tiny church of San Gregorio de’ Muratori, the F.S.S.P.’s former Roman church.)

6:30 p.m.
At Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini, Pontifical Mass celebrated by His Eminence George Card. Pell, Prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy, in commemoration of the tenth anniversary of the foundation of the Internation Federation Juventutem. The musical service will be provided by the choir of the Basilique de Notre-Dame, the F.S.S.P. church in Fribourg, Switzerland, directed by Mrs. Christiane Haymoz.

Saturday, October 25, 9:30 a.m.
At the Basilica of San Lorenzo in Damaso, Eucharistic Adoration, lead by Fr. Marino Neri, secretary of Amicizia Sacerdotale Summorum Pontificum, with organ accompaniment by Mr Jean-Yves Haymoz, followed by a procession to St Peter’s Basilica.

12:00 p.m.  
At the Basilica of Saint Peter, Pontifical Mass celebrated by His Eminence Raymond Card. Burke, Prefect of the Apostolic Segnatura. The musical service will be provided by seminarians of the North American College, directed by Mr. Leon Griesbach, and accompanied by Mr. Garrett Ahlers on organ.

5:00 p.m.
At Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini, a spiritual concert of Gregorian chant and polyphony, by seminarians of the Institute of the Good Shepherd, directed by Fr. Matthieu Raffray.

Sunday, October 26, 11:00 a.m.
At the Basilica of St Benedict in Norcia, Solemn Mass for the feast of Christ the King, celebrated by Fr. Cassian Folsom, prior of the Abbey. The homily will be given by His Eminence Walter Card. Brandmüller, President Emeritus of the Pontifical Historical Commission.  (Pilgrims will depart by bus for Norcia from Termini Station in Rome at 8 a.m., reservation information at nitorin@tin.it, or by calling (+39) 05 23716510. A buffet lunch will be served for the pilgrims; reservation required by writing lazio.cnsp@gmail.com)

In Rome, 11:00 a.m.
For those pilgrims who are not traveling to Norcia, at Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini, His Grace Archbishop François Bacqué, Nuncio Emeritus to the Netherlands, will celebrate a Pontifical Mass.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

RIP Jacques and Simone Wach, Parents of the Prior General of the ICK

Via the blogs Notions Romaines and Sancta Trinitas Unus Deus, I learned today that the parents of Msgr. Gilles Wach, Prior General of the Institute of Christ the King, both passed away very recently, Mrs Simone Wach on September 7th, and Mr Jacques Wach on Monday. Please be so good as to pray for the repose of their souls, and for the peace and consolation of their family members and friends.

The Order for a Synod, from the 1595 Pontifical of Clement VIII (Second Day)

The second day of the synod begins with the same ceremony as the first, although it is not specifically stated in the rubrics that the Mass of the day is to be the Mass of the Holy Spirit. When this is over, a faldstool is placed before the altar, and the bishop, in red cope and precious miter, accompanied by deacon and subdeacon also in red, kneels before the altar, and intones the following antiphon. “Propitius esto * peccátis nostris, Dómine, propter nomen tuum: nequando dicant gentes: Ubi est Deus eórum? – Forgive us our sins, o Lord, for Thy name’s sake: lest ever the gentiles should say: Where is their God?” The choir continues the antiphon, followed by the whole of Psalm 78, “O God, the heathen are come into Thy inheritance”, during which the bishop sits until the psalm is finished and the antiphon repeated. (These are different from the psalm and antiphon said the day before.)

The bishop then turns to the altar and says:
Bending the knee of our hearts before Thee, o Lord, we ask that we may accomplish the good which Thou seekest of us; namely, that we may walk with Thee, ready in solicitude, and do judgment with most careful discretion; and with love of mercy, shine forth in our zeal for all that pleaseth Thee. Through Christ our Lord.
All answer “Amen”, and the bishop adds a second prayer.
Let us pray. Kindly pour forth upon our minds, we beseech Thee, o Lord, the Holy Spirit; so that we, gathered in Thy name, may in all things hold to justice, ruled by piety, in such wise that here our will agree with Thee entirely; and ever pondering on reasonable things, we may accomplish what is pleasing to Thee in word and deed. Through our Lord Jesus Christ etc.
This prayer is a cento of the first collect of the Ember Saturday of Pentecost, the first prayer of the preceding day of the synod, and the collect of the Sixth Sunday after Epiphany.

The previous day the Litany of the Saints was said at this point; it is not repeated today. The bishop now sings, “Oremus”, the deacon “Flectamus genua”, and the subdeacon, after a pause, “Levate”, after which the bishop sings this prayer.
O God, who command that we speak justice, and judge what it right; grant that no iniquity be found in our mouth, no wickedness in our mind; so that purer speech may agree with pure heart, justice be shown in our work, no guile appear in our speech, and truth come forth from our heart. Through our Lord Jesus Christ etc.
The deacon then sings the following Gospel, Luke 10, 1-9, the common Gospel of Evangelists (and some Confessors), with the normal ceremonies of a Pontifical Mass.
At that time: The Lord appointed also other seventy-two: and He sent them two and two before His face into every city and place whither He himself was to come. And He said to them: The harvest indeed is great, but the laborers are few. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he send laborers into his harvest. Go: Behold I send you as lambs among wolves. Carry neither purse, nor scrip, nor shoes; and salute no man by the way. Into whatsoever house you enter, first say: Peace be to this house. And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon him; but if not, it shall return to you. And in the same house, remain, eating and drinking such things as they have: for the laborer is worthy of his hire. Remove not from house to house. And into what city soever you enter, and they receive you, eat such things as are set before you. And heal the sick that are therein, and say to them: The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.
As on the previous day, the bishop kneels to intone the hymn Veni Creator Spiritus, which is continued by the choir, after which he sits at a chair which is set up facing the assembly, and addresses it. At the corresponding point the previous day, a brief model for his address is given; the rubric of this days specifies that he speaks “his verbis – with these words,” but also says that he may omit them.
My venerable and most beloved brethren, just as we reminded your kindness and gentility yesterday, concerning the divine offices, and the sacred grades of (service at) the altar, or even (our own) mores and the needs of the Church, it is necessary that the charity of all of you, whensoever it knoweth of any matter in need of correction, hesitate not to bring forth in our midst such matters for emendation or renewal; that by the zeal of your charity, and the gift of the Lord, all such matters may come to the best, to the praise and glory of the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
A sermon at a synod; illustration from a 1595 edition of the Roman Pontifical. (Permission to use this image has been very kindly granted by the Pitts Theological Library, Candler School of Theology at Emory University.)
As on the previous day, before or after the bishop’s address, a “learned and suitable man” delivers a sermon “on ecclesiastical discipline” and other matters “as the bishop may determine”. The archdeacon then reads any Apostolic Constitutions which may not have been promulgated hitherto in that place, and other such documents, as the bishop may decide. There are then read out the constitutions put forth for the approval of the synod, which are then voted upon. (One must assume that in accordance with local traditions, various other matters may also be dealt with.) The bishop then gives the Pontifical blessing, and all depart.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Monks of Norcia 2015 Calendar

I recently received in the mail a copy of the new calendar of the Monks of Norcia. This 2015 edition is just as magnificent as last year's. Most readers of NLM probably need no introduction to these wonderful monks, who live a simple life utterly faithful to the Rule of Saint Benedict and the liturgical tradition that has nourished monasticism for 2,000 years (and beyond, if we think of the place of the Psalms in Hebrew worship). Their cause is absolutely worth supporting, especially as their number of postulants and novices continues to grow, and as the Church needs more than ever islands of sanctity where the noble vision of St. Benedict and Pope Benedict XVI can flourish.

But those who are shopping for a calendar are, quite naturally, wondering not only if the cause is worth supporting, but if the calendar is beautiful and usefully laid out. In this regard, pictures do speak a thousand words, so I will simply attach a bunch below. The layout of the days, with feasts of the old, new, and Benedictine calendars, and the size and readability make this calendar my favorite for the calendar I keep at home in my kitchen and the calendar we put up on our refectory bulletin board at Wyoming Catholic College.

To find out more and purchase copies of the calendar—they make great gifts, too!—go to this website.

(Some of the photos make the page color look more yellow than its natural white color.)

Pontifical Requiem Mass in Madison - November 3

On November 3rd, Bishop Robert Morlino will be celebrating a Pontifical Requiem for All Souls Day at 7pm at the Bishop O'Connor Center in Madison, WI. Victoria's Requiem a4 will be sung. I hope those in the area will be able to attend this rare treat!

The Order for a Synod, from the 1595 Pontifical of Clement VIII (First Day)

It occurred to me that, with the Extraordinary Synod currently going on, and making headlines almost on an hourly basis, our readers might find interesting the traditional order for holding a synod, according to the 1595 Pontifical of Clement VIII. It is divided into three days, and seems to presume that a lot of the business of the Synod will be determined by the bishop and his assistants beforehand. The rubrics are given here in summary, omitting several of the less pertinent details such as the places where the bishop removes his miter etc.

On the first day, the bishop who has called the synod processes to the church, accompanied by the clergy who are called to the synod “by right or custom”, all in choir dress, and celebrates a Mass of the Holy Spirit. When this is over, a faldstool is placed before the altar in the middle, and the bishop, in red cope and precious miter, accompanied by deacon and subdeacon also in red, kneels before the altar, and intones the following antiphon. “Exáudi nos, * Dómine, quoniam benigna est misericordia tua: secundum multitúdinem miseratiónum tuárum réspice nos, Dómine. – Hear us, o Lord, for kindly is Thy mercy; according to the multitude of Thy tender mercies look upon us, o Lord.” The choir continues the antiphon, followed by the whole of Psalm 68, “Save me o God, for the waters have entered unto my soul”, during which the bishop sits until the psalm is finished and the antiphon repeated.

The bishop then turns to the altar and says:
We are here, o Lord, Holy Spirit, we are here, hindered by the enormity of sin, but gathered especially in Thy name; come to us, be here with us, deign to come down upon our hearts. Teach us what we ought to do; show us, where we ought to go; work Thou what we ought to accomplish. Be thou alone the one who prompts and effect our judgments, who alone with God the Father and His Son possess the name of glory. Permit us not to be disturbers of justice, Thou who love righteousness most mightily; that the evil of ignorance may not lead us, that favor may not sway us, that the receiving of gift or person may not corrupt us. But unite us to Thee effectually by the gift of Thy grace alone, that we may be one in Thee, and in no way depart from the truth. And thus, gathered in Thy name, in all things we may hold to justice, ruled by piety, in such wise that in this life our decree agree with Thee entirely, and in the future life, we may obtain eternal rewards, for the sake of what we have done well.
All answer “Amen”, and the bishop adds a second prayer.
Let us pray. Almighty and everlasting God, who by Thy mercy hast safely gathered us especially in this place, may the Comforter, who procedeth from Thee, enlighten our minds, we beseech Thee; and bring us unto all truth, as Thy Son did promise; and strengthen all in Thy faith and charity; so that, stirred up by this temporal synod, we may profit thereby to the increase of eternal happiness. Through the same our Lord Jesus Christ etc.
The bishop then kneels at the faldstool, and all others present also kneel, as the cantors sing the Litany of the Saints. After the invocation, “That Thou may deign to grant eternal rest to all the faithful departed”, the bishop rises, takes his crook in hand, and sings the following invocation; at the place marked, he makes the sign of the Cross over those gathered for the synod . “That Thou may deign to visit, order and + bless this present synod. R. We ask Thee, hear us.” The cantors finish the Litany.

All rise, and the bishop sings, “Oremus”, the deacon “Flectamus genua”, and the subdeacon, after a pause, “Levate”, after which the bishop sings this prayer.
Grant to Thy Church, we beseech Thee, o merciful God, that gathered in the Holy Spirit, She may merit to serve Thee in sure devotion. Through our Lord Jesus Christ etc.
A session of the Council of Trent in the Cathedral of St Vigilius. (Image from Italian wikipedia)
The deacon then sings the following Gospel, (that of the Thursday within the Octave of Pentecost, Luke 9, 1-6,) with the normal ceremonies of a Pontifical Mass.
At that time: Calling together the twelve Apostles, Jesus gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases. And He sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick. And He said to them: Take nothing for your journey; neither staff, nor scrip, nor bread, nor money; neither have two coats. And whatsoever house you shall enter into, abide there, and depart not from thence. And whosoever will not receive you, when ye go out of that city, shake off even the dust of your feet, for a testimony against them. And going out, they went about through the towns, preaching the gospel, and healing everywhere.
The bishop kneels to intone the hymn Veni Creator Spiritus, which is continued by the choir. He then sits at a chair which is set up facing the assembly, and addresses it. A brief model for his address is given, but the rubric specifies that he speaks “in hanc sententiam - along these lines.” (In many rites, such as ordinations, sermons of this kind are part of the rite, and must be read exactly as they given in the Pontifical.)
My venerable fellow priests and dearest brethren, having first prayed to God, it is necessary that each one of you take up the matters upon which we must confer, whether they concern the divine offices, or sacred orders, or even our own mores and the needs of the Church, with charity and kindliness, and accept them, by the help of God, with supreme reverence, and all his might; and that each one may faithfully strive with all devotion to amend the things that need amendment. And if perchance what is said or done displease anyone, without any scruple of contentiousness, let him bring it forth before all; that by the Lord’s mediation, such matter may also come to the best result. And in this way, let strife or discord find no place to undermine justice, nor again the strength and solicitude of our order (i.e. the clerical order) grow lukewarm in seeking the truth.
Before or after this address, a “learned and suitable man” delivers a sermon “on ecclesiastical discipline, on the divine mysteries, on the correction of morals among the clergy”, as determined by the bishop. Complaints may then be heard (“querelae, si quae sunt, audiuntur”), presumably in accord with the matters the synod has been called to address.

The archdeacon then reads several decrees of the Council of Trent on disciplinary matters pertaining to synods, and the Profession of Faith known as the Creed of Pope Pius IV. Finally, all are “charitably admonished that during the synod, they conduct themselves honestly in all regards, even outside the synod itself, so that their behavior may worthy serve to others as an example. The bishop gives the Pontifical blessing, and all depart.