Sunday, April 06, 2014

A Roman Pilgrim at the Station Churches - Part 10

Friday of the Fourth Week of Lent - Sant’Eusebio
This church was chosen as the Station for the Mass at which the Gospel of the Raising of Lazarus (St. John 11, 1-45) was traditionally read, because immediately in front of the site was a very ancient burial area, the Campus Esquilinus.

This plaque in the portico notes that Pope Gregory IX (1227-1241) consecrated the church on the day of the Lenten Station in 1238. (March 19th)
Passiontide veils, making not just a comeback, but an early appearance...

Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent - San Nicola in Carcere
The Station for this day was originally at Saint Lawrence Outside-the-Walls, but later transferred into the city at the church with the peculiar name of “Santa Clause in Prison”. This stems for a legend that St Nicholas of Myra was brought to Rome by the Emperor Constantius II for his opposition to Arianism, and imprisoned in the basement of one of the three small Roman temples on which the church now sits.
This notice board for the Stations appeared out of nowhere for the first time on Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent. Note that the day is referred to by its traditional liturgical name, “Sitientes”, the first word of the Introit. It was formerly a day commonly chosen for ordinations. In the Middle Ages, the station for the following day was announced by one of the Papal notaries at the Mass, with the words, “Holy Father, tomorrow the station will take place at such-and-such a church”, to which the Pope himself would reply, “Thanks be to God.”

The same day (April 5th), the Feast of St. Vincent Ferrer - Sung Mass in the Dominican Rite at Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini
Earlier in the day, our correspondent Agnese was at the FSSP parish in Rome, and took some photographs of a Sung Mass in the Dominican Rite for the feast of St Vincent Ferrer. At the end of the Mass, holy water was blessed with a relic of St Vincent, which was presented to the faithful to be kissed. The “Vincentian water” is commonly used to bless the sick, since St Vincent performed innumerable miraculous cures in his lifetime and afterwards. 

The Dominican Rite (Use) has preserved one of the most beautiful customs commonly held in the Middle Ages, by which the priest immediately after the Consecration stretches his arms out in the form of a Cross.

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