28 February 2007

Richard Rolle of Hampole, d. 1349

Lord Jesus, when I think of Thee,
And look upon Thy cross aright,
Thy body stained with blood I see,
Lord, pierce my heart with that sad sight!

Jesus, true love I owe to Thee
Who on the cross didst show, that tide,
The crown of thorns, the sharp nails three,
The cruel spear that pierced Thy side.

Jesus, love made Thy tears to fall,
'Twas love that made Thy blood to flow,
For love wast scourged and smitten all,
For love Thy life Thou didst forego.

Mary, I pray, as thou art free,
A part of this thy grief I'll bear,
That I may sorrow here with thee,
And bliss with thee here after share!

27 February 2007

Cross and Crown: The Patience of the Cross

HOLY FATHER, who hast shewn us that the brave bearing of the Cross is the earnest of wearing thy Crown : Help us by thy grace to bear patiently our pains and disappointments, as thy beloved Son bore his ; and to offer them as a faithful and pure gift to our crucified Lord ; who now reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, GOD, for ever and ever.

E. Milner-White
A Procession of Passion Prayers

26 February 2007

Catholic Collects from the Anglican Heritage: Lent I

God who, by this yearly fast of Lent, dost purify thy Church ; grant unto thy family, that whatsoever good they strive to win by abstinence, may be followed consistently by goodness in their deeds; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The People's Missal
after the Sarum Collect for Lent I

O Lord, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights : give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness and true holiness, to thy honour and glory. Who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost; one God, world without end. Amen.
The People's
Anglican Missal

Collects for Lent I from the Anglican Tradition

O Lord, which for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights; Give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness, and true holiness, to thy honour and glory, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
The Book of Common Prayer, 1549

Lord Jesus Christ, who wast in all points tempted as we are : Strengthen us, we pray thee, in our manifold temptations; and as thou knowest our weaknesses, so may we know thee mighty to save; who with the Father and the Holy Spirit art one God for ever and ever.

Holy Father, whose Son Jesus Christ fasted forty days in the desert: Give us grace to discipline ourselves in humble submission to your Spirit that we may lead upright and holy lives to your honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Modern Collects

Almighty God, whose blessed Son was led by the Spirit to be tempted by Satan : come quickly to help us who are assaulted by many temptations; and, as you know the weaknesses of each of us, let each find you mighty to save; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord; who live s and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.
The Book of Common Prayer 1979 USA
Based upon a prayer of William Bright "For the Tempted"

Almighty God, whose Son Jesus Christ fasted forty days in the wilderness, and was tempted as we are, yet did not sin : give us grace to discipline ourselves in obedience to your Spirit; and, as you know our weakness, so may we know your saving power; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
APB, Ireland

Almighty God, your Son fasted forty days and forty nights in the desert : give us grace to use such discipline, that our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may always obey your will in righteousness and holiness, to your honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
An Anglican Prayer Book, South Africa

Merciful Father, your Son was tempted as we are yet without sin : be with us in our weakness that we may know your power to save; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
An Anglican Prayer Book, South Africa

24 February 2007

The Catholic Legacy of Anglicans!

Well said and precisely so:
I thought for a moment and then could offer only this halting word of hope: “Everything we experienced in the parish church this morning is alien to our tradition and not in keeping with the doctrine or discipline of the Church; it was foisted on us during a time of cultural upheaval and chaos, and in due course, we will be rid of it. Meanwhile, everything we experienced in the Cathedral this morning is Catholic in its origin: the building, the music, the words, the vestments, the ritual, the ethos of prayer. Perhaps in the Providence of God these things had to be kept for us against that day when we would forget our own patrimony and no longer know how to worship the living God in spirit and in truth. All we have to do is reclaim our birthright.”

Read the rest of this excellent posting on Fr. Jay Scott Newman's website, the article entitled Kill Me Now.

23 February 2007

A Pleading of the Passion

ORD, have mercy upon us.
...........Christ, have mercy upon us.
........................LORD, have mercy upon us.


O Saviour of the world, who by the Cross and Precious Blood hast redeemed us ;
Save us and help us, we humbly beseech thee, O Lord.

JESUS, who to thine awed disciples didst foreshow thy body broken, and thy blood shed ;
Have mercy upon us.

JESUS, who in an agony of prayer, didst take the cup of pain ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, betrayed by a kiss ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, forsaken by thy friends ;
Have mercy upon us..

Jesus, denied by Peter ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, who bound before Caiaphas,
didst confess thyself the Son of God ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, blindfolded, struck, and spat upon ;
Have mercy upon us.

who while thine enemies were instant
with loud voices before the governor,
wast silent ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, whom Herod mocked and arrayed in a gorgeous robe ;
Have mercy upon us

Jesus, crowned with thorns ;
Have mercy upon us

Jesus, brought forth that all might behold their king ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, acclaimed by the people, "Crucify him crucify" ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, rejected for Barabbas ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, condemned to death ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, scourged ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, who wast led forth in shame along the way of sorrow ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, falling beneath the Cross ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, who amid uproar and weeping didst come to Calvary ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, stripped naked before men ;
Have mercy upon us.

Jesus, laid on the cross ;
Have mercy upon us.

By the nails through hands and feet ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy parched lips ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy ears filled with ribaldry and scorn ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By the forgiveness of thy foes ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy promise to the penitenet ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy love to thy beloved ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy broken heart ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy soul all desolate ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy spirit rendered to the Father ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

By thy death ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

From all evil and mischief; from sin, from the crafts and assaults of the devil; from thy wrath, and from everlasting damnation ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

From all blindness of heart; from pride, vain-glory, and hypocrisy; from envy, hatred, and malice, and all uncharitableness ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

From fornication, and all other deadly sin; and from all the deceits of the world, the flesh, and the devil ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

From all dread of thy service, and distrust of thy love; from enmity to thy cross and scorn of thy passion ;
Good Lord, deliver us.

Let us confess our sins, saying together :

We confess to God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, before the whole company of heaven, that we have sinned exceedingly in thought, word, and deed, through our fault, our own fault, our own most grievous fault; wherefore we pray God to have mercy upon us. May God Almighty have mercy upon us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.

Almighty God have mercy upon you, and forgive you all your sins, deliver you from all evil, confirm and strengthen you in all goodness, and bring you to everlasting life. Amen.

The Almighty and merciful Lord grant unto you pardon, absolution, and remission of all your sins, time for true repentance, and the grace and comfort of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Now unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood and hath made us kings, and priests unto God and his Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

Cambridge Offices and Orisons
E. Milner-White & B.T.D. Smith

Prayers for the Souls of the Faithful

ALMIGHTY, eternal God, to Whom there is never any prayer made without hope of mercy, be merciful to the souls of Thy servants departed from this world in the confession of Thy name, that they may be associate to the company of Thy saints; through JESUS Christ our Lord. Amen.

WE COMMEND unto Thee, O Lord, the souls of Thy servants and handmaidens ( . . . ), and of all the faithful departed, that being dead to this world they may live to Thee : and whatsoever sins they have contracted through the frailty of their conversation in this world do Thou through the forgiveness of Thy most merciful pity wipe away.

QUICKEN, O LORD, our departed in Thy compassion, and set them at Thy right hand. Clothe them with excellent glory in Thy kingdom, and join them to the just and righteous who fulfil Thy will in Jerusalem which is above : O LORD of our death and of our life, FATHER, SON, and HOLY GHOST for ever. Amen.

from Sursum Corda
A Handbook of Intercession and Thanksgiving
W.H. Frere and A.L. Illington

A Thanksgiving

To JESUS the life of our flesh,
Who quickeneth whom He willeth :
To JESUS the life of our soul,
Who came that we might live more abundantly:
To JESUS the life of His Church,
Who loved her and gave Himself for her :
Let all mankind in earth and in paradise,
Reconciled by His death, and saved by His life,
Give glory and honour, worship and praise,
Now and for ever and ever.

from Sursum Corda
A Handbook of Intercession and Thanksgiving
W.H. Frere and A.L. Illington

A Lament for Britain

At Fides et Ardor:

21 February 2007

Ash Wednesday

On this Ash Wednesday when we are put in mind of our own mortality and the transitory nature of our days, I am put in mind of those things upon which we labour so as to leave a legacy. We can think of philanthropists who give their money to good causes as well as philanthropists who give their money to Dr. Mengele's abusive and murderous step-children. Legacies are left whether we make sure our name is on a monument or not, and just off in the wings is Ozymandias warning us about such things.

Scripture tells us to lay up treasures in heaven where nothing can destroy them. And those treasures all flow from our love of Jesus and knowing that what we do to one another we have also done to him. There are many traditions in the Church showing us how our worship adorns the place the Lord has gone on to prepare for us. And many a soul knows the benefits of interceding for souls who have left this life and remain on a journey of cleansing until they see Jesus face to face that is, the souls in Purgatory. We are always being moved to the furthest edge of care for the stranger, the widow, the orphan, oh yes, and our enemies too, and even souls we have never met.

This reminds me of the Anglican spiritual legacy. It would be very easy to forget it all and just become a "regular" Latin rite Catholic. However, there are elements of that legacy that led me here to the Catholic Church, and they continue to speak with a Catholic voice for those of Anglican heritage who have entered the Catholic Church. As one born from the Anglican legacy into the Catholic Church, I can no more turn my back on it than to turn my back on my own family. Of course, the Church never intends this sort of categorical rejection and denunciation of one's previous denomination, and Holy Mother Church has made ample provision for such traditions to be judged, vetted, and then employed within the Catholic Church. Nonetheless, the truth is that there are many in the Roman rite who do not wish it to be so. They would rather see things Anglican die a permanent death because of its Englishness and because of the Catholic martyrs of England and Wales.

I find that this feeling against all things Anglican is very understandable but also dangerously misguided. It is through the prayers of the same Martyrs that Anglicans are coming home to the Church. As Cardinal Newman once noted, the Anglican Church was never entirely de-Catholicised. Many of the most beautiful prayers and hymns in the world have their origin in the Anglican Church -- but only because the Anglican authors and translators turned to the ancient traditions of the Church, the ancient texts, and looking toward Constantinople found a new appreciation for their Latin Sarum legacy.

Some regard Anglo-Catholicism as merely an invention of something that had never existed before. They fail to see the operation of the Holy Ghost in the organic development of the Anglo-Catholic traditions from a once lost but reclaimed heritage. And while this Catholic Renewal in the Anglican Communion may reference Cardinal Newman or the great John Mason Neale, it is first and foremost a motion of grace and a movement of the Holy Spirit himself. Through the many years since the Oxford Movement many generations of Anglicans grew up as I did believing themselves to be Catholic and intending to live a Catholic life. Again, one must look at the organic development of these things and then watch whilst praising God for His work in bringing the Catholic elements of this Anglican spiritual legacy back into the Catholic Church through the Pastoral Provision of Pope John Paul II in 1980.

Now I find myself occupied with efforts to carry forward this Catholic-minded Anglican spiritual legacy of prayer, music, art, and theological reflexion within the Roman Catholic Church. All of my little anglo-Catholic prayer manuals still speak truly of the Catholic life of the faithful. They contain treasures from Heaven which when employed become part of that treasury of good things we store up in heaven where nothing corrupts or destroys it. I know that many a former Anglican and Episcopalian feel betrayed by their denomination, by its continual and ongoing corruption, but no feeling gives us permission to disown the beautiful things the Holy Spirit did in that denomination for the greater glory of the Blessed Trinity and for the building up of the Catholic Church throughout the world.

This Lent I will be posting prayers and litanies from various books, wee bookies, and manuals that I pray may be useful to you, gentle Reader, and will outline more clearly just what I have in mind in trying to preserve this Anglican legacy -- Anglican heritage and tradition -- where it is in accord with the Magisterium of the Catholic Church.

The Humility and Modesty of Mary

Mary’s Modesty Exerts a Gentle Sway

When first He went out to preach, she kept apart from Him; she interfered not with His work; and, even when He was gone up on high, yet she, a woman, went not out to preach or teach, she seated not herself in the Apostolic chair, she took no part in the priest's office; she did but humbly seek her Son in the Holy Mass of those, who, though her ministers in heaven, were her superiors in the Church on earth.

Nor, when she and they had left this lower scene, and she was a Queen upon her Son's right hand, not even then did she ask of Him to publish her name to the ends of the world, or to hold her up to the world's gaze, but she remained waiting for the time, when her own glory should be necessary for His. (…)

When dispute arose about her among her children, she hushed it; when objections were urged against her, she waived her claims and waited; till now, in this very day, should God so will, she will win at length her most radiant crown, and, without opposing voice, and amid the jubilation of the whole Church, she will be hailed as immaculate in her conception.

John Henry Newman Discourses Addressed to Congregations
Discourse17. The Glories of Mary for the Sake of Her Son (1849)

Today is the Birthday
of the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman.

20 February 2007

A Tabernacle, Veronica, A Veil

Look to Him and Be Radiant

A beautiful reflexion at Vultus Christi

Shrove Tuesday Prayers

The Collects for the Feast of the Holy Face of Jesus

O God, who willed that your only–begotten Son
should become man,
and show us in his human nature a perfect image of your divinity,
grant, we beseech you,
that by venerating the image of his Holy Face
we may be united with him
in the mysteries of his Passion and Death,
and so come to contemplate forever his glorious Face
in the joy of the resurrection.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever. Amen.

Collect at the General Intercessions

Almighty and ever-living God, whose splendour on Sinai was such
that Moses was obliged to veil his face made radiant by the brightness of your holiness; remove the veil from our faces, and open our eyes to the knowledge of your glory shining in the face of Christ, that we, with the gaze of our hearts fixed on him, may, by the power of the Holy Spirit, be changed into his likeness and so praise you forever in the company of the saints in light. We ask this through Christ our Lord.


O Lord Jesus Christ, beauty of the heavenly Father and light of souls, we beseech you with confidence that, as we advance in the darkness of this world, the splendour of your Face may shine upon us and that, in the light of your Countenance, we may one day merit to contemplate the eternal light in which you live and reign with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
forever and ever.

Prayer Over the Offerings

O God, the Father of lights,
look upon us, we beseech you,
and beholding the Face of Christ your Son
who offered himself for us as a victim of reconciliation,
grant that we, like him, may offer ourselves to you
as a spiritual sacrifice to the praise of your glory.
Through Christ our Lord.

Excellent Translations by Vultus Christi

Last Prayer added to Compline on Shrove Tuesday

Lord, give us grace to inaugurate with holy fasting, the defenses of Christian warfare, so that we who are to fight against spiritual wickedness, may be helped and strengthened by self-denial. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

And speaking of Dominicans

A Prayer for Dominican Vocations

Blessed Jordan, worthy successor of St Dominic, in the early days of the Order, your example and zeal prompted many men and women to follow Christ in the white habit of Our Holy Father. As patron of Dominican vocations, continue to stimulate talented and devoted men and women to consecrate their lives to God. Through your intercession, lead to the Order of Preachers generous and sacrificing persons, willing to give themselves fervently to the apostolate of Truth. Help them to prepare themselves to be worthy of the grace of a Dominican vocation. Inspire their hearts to become learned of God, that with firm determination they might aspire to be 'champions of the Faith and true lights of the world'. Amen.

Godzdogz Blog

One of my favourite blogs is Godzdogz: The English Dominican Studentate. Be sure to visit it this Lent.

If you are in the Blackfriars neighbourhood, there is a wonderful opportunity to join them for Compline.

The Shriving Bell

Our parish of Our Lady of Walsingham has three blessed bells made in France that call to the faithful for Holy Mass and for the Angelus. There are different sorts of peals with the three indicating what is at hand. I am convinced that churches need real baptised bells -- and not electrified speakers playing hymns recordings of tubular bells. Later I shall post more on bells and their Catholic purpose, but today I have in mind the Shriving Bell.

Being a 21st century and a 14th century man myself, I believe my priest needs a Shriving Bell beyond the blessing of the 3 French bells in the Tower. We have been blessed with priests who are marvellous confessors, and I would like to hear the tolling of that special Shriving Bell calling one to Confession. To hear such a bell reminds the faithful of their need to shrive, to confess. We all need reminders, and the sounding of a bell that is blessed has a special call to the souls of the Catholic faithful. Those already shriven can hear the tolling of the Shriving Bell as a call to pray for the penitents and to pray for their Father Confessor.

Today I find myself confined to home because of infirmity. So there will be the eating of pancakes using up all the butter, eggs, and fat here in the Cottage. At Our Lady of Walsingham in Houston there will be a Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper, and Fr. Bruce Noble will be in the Confessional at noon and in the evening. A Tower Bell will toll as the Shriving Bell today. At the Pancake Supper three members of the laity will be honoured for their faithful service to the parish. They are extraordinary individuals -- Margaret Pichon who was Fr. Moore's administrative assistant, a brilliant photographer, and the soul who keeps the Parish website going -- Ron Thorp, a genius of a business manager and a spiritual Encourager to all -- and Elliott Goulas who has been responsible for buildings and grounds for many faithful years.

Most Anglicans remember the pancakes part but have forgotten what "Shrove" means and do not have Confession anywhere on their radar screens. Having lost Shrovetide and the 'Gesimas we become lost in a secular, diabolical Mardi Gras, and then we fall into Ash Wednesday exhausted, overfed, and uprepared for the sacred fast of the Great and Holy Season of Lent. Some day I hope our bishops in the Catholic Church will attend to this part of the liturgical year and offer the faithful the guidance that we need. One must prepare for Lent, and pre-Lent was just such a time. Shrovetide made it even clearer how one was to get ready for Lent -- all for the purpose of undertaking a holy fast unto the Lord.

Although I will not make it into the Confessional at Our Lady of Walsingham this day -- and although my body cannot engage in any exercise this day, I will endeavour to engage body and soul in spiritual exercises of repentance and reparation in order to prepare for an holy Lent. All of my old anglo-Catholic manuals still come in handy at this time of year, and they will keep good company with me till evening falls.

19 February 2007

Shrove Tuesday - Feast of the Holy Face of Jesus

St. Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face, pray for us.

There is a wonderful post at Vultus Christi that is most definitely worth reading -- if only for a very fine original translation of the propers for the Shrove Tuesday Feast of the Holy Face of Jesus.

"... Because in the mystery of the Word made flesh, thou hast caused a new light to shine in our hearts, to give the knowledge of thy glory in the Face of thy Son Jesus Ch
rist our Lord." The Book of Divine Worship

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 Spirit, have mercy on us.
+ Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us.

Holy Mary, pray for us.
Our Lady of Victory, pray for us.
Saint Therese, servant of God, pray for us.
Saint Therese, victim of the merciful love of God, pray for us.
Saint Therese, spouse of Jesus, pray for us.
Saint Therese, gift of Heaven, pray for us.
Saint Therese, remarkable in childhood, pray for us.
Saint Therese, an example of obedience, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of the will of God, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of peace, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of patience, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of gentleness, pray for us.
Saint Therese, heroic in sacrifice, pray for us.
Saint Therese, generous in forgiving, pray for us.
Saint Therese, benefactress of the needy, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of Jesus, pray for us.
Saint Therese, devoted to the Holy Face, pray for us.
Saint Therese, consumed with divine love of God, pray for us.
Saint Therese, advocate of extreme cases, pray for us.
Saint Therese, persevering in prayer, pray for us.
Saint Therese, a powerful advocate with God, pray for us.
Saint Therese, showering roses, pray for us.
Saint Therese, doing good upon earth, pray for us.
Saint Therese, answering all prayers, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of holy chastity, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of voluntary poverty, pray for us.
Saint Therese, lover of obedience, pray for us. .
Saint Therese, burning with zeal for God’s glory, pray for us.
Saint Therese, inflamed with the Spirit of Love, pray for us.
Saint Therese, child of benediction, pray for us. pray for us.
Saint Therese, perfect in simplicity, pray for us. pray for us.
Saint Therese, so remarkable for trust in God, pray for us.
Saint Therese, gifted with unusual intelligence, pray for us.
Saint Therese, never invoked without some answer, pray for us.
Saint Therese, teaching us the sure way, pray for us.
Saint Therese, victim of Divine Love, 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.

V. Saint Therese, the little Flower of Jesus,
R. Pray for us.

Let us Pray:
O God, Who inflamed with Thy Spirit of Love the soul of Thy servant Therese of the Child Jesus, grant that we may also love Thee and may make Thee much loved.
R. Amen.

18 February 2007


There was a time when we spoke of Shrovetide which was from Quinquagesima and included Shrove Monday and Shrove Tuesday. Shrove Tuesday still survives as a title among some while Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday seem more and more widespread. As I work to gather up the tattered bits and forgotten gems of our patrimony, I do not want to let Shrovetide go into the dustbin of ecclesiastical parlance. We need to get shriven; we don't need to get beads -- as my Californian Episcopalian friend reminds me via e-mail.

In advance of Ash Wednesday (or Ash Monday if you are Maronite) here follows a prayer by David Silk to consider adding to your devotions:

A Prayer of Devotion to God

Eternal God, I am not my own but yours.
Take me for your own,
and help me in all things to do your holy will.
My God, I give myself to you,
in joy and in sorrow,
in sickness and in health,
in success and in failure,
in life and in death,
in time and for eternity.
Make me and keep me your own;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


17 February 2007

Ancient Preface for the Dedication of a Church

V. The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
V. Lift up your hearts.
R. We lift them up unto the Lord.
V. Let us give thanks unto our Lord God.
R. It is meet and right so to do.

IT is very meet, right, and our bounden duty, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto thee, O Lord holy, Father Almighty, everlasting God:

WHO as the giver of all good things dwellest in this House of Prayer reared by human hands, and by the unceasing operation of thy grace dost sanctify the Church which thou thyself hast founded. And verily thy Church is the true House of Prayer, of which these visible buildings are but the figures. It is the Temple of the habitation of thy glory, the Throne of unchanging truth, the Holy Place wherein everlasting love abideth. It is the Ark which bringeth us, who are delivered from the deluge of the world, into the haven of salvation. It is the beloved and only Bride which Christ hath purchased with his Blood and quickened by his Spirit; in whose bosom we, who have been regenerated by thy grace, are fed with the milk of the Word, are strengthened with the Bread of Life, and are comforted by the help of thy mercy. This is that Bride that on earth, being holpen by the Bridegroom, fighteth the good fight of faith, and being crowned by him in heaven, singeth the songs of triumphant joy.

AND therefore with Angels and Archangels, with Thrones and Dominations, and with all the company of the heavenly host, we sing the majesty of thy glory, evermore praising thee, and saying:

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.

An ancient Eucharistic Preface for the Dedication of a Church.

16 February 2007

An old collect for St. Peter Martyr

Grant we beseech Thee, O almighty God, that we may honor the faith of blessed Peter, Thy martyr, with fitting devotion, as he by the spread of the same faith was found worthy to obtain the palm of martyrdom. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who livest and reignest with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God, Forever and ever. Amen.

Præsta, quæsumus, omnípotens Deus : ut beáti Petri Mártyris tui fidem congrua devotióne sectemur ; qui pro ejúsdem fídei dilatatióne martyrii palmam méruit obtinére. Per Dóminum.

O God, who didst vouchsafe to blessed Peter thy Martyr to win the crown of martyrdom in the preaching of the Faith : grant, we pray thee ; that we may imitate him in all devout following of the same. Through Jesus Christ our Lord.

More on St. Peter Martyr

Peter Martyr, OP M (RM)(also known as Peter of Verona)

Born in Verona, Italy, 1206; died April 6, 1252; canonized by Pope Innocent IV in 1253--a single year after his death.

Peter's parents belonged to the heretical sect of the Cathari, theological descendants of the Manichees. Miraculously, though he was ridiculed for his faith throughout his youth, it was preserved in purity and he became a Dominican. His father sent him to a Catholic for his early education, thinking that the environment at home would keep Peter from being deceived by the teachings of the Church. Nevertheless, one of the first things Peter learned there was the Apostle's Creed, which the Cathari abhorred. Making conversation one day, his uncle asked him his lesson. The boy recited the creed and explained it in the Catholic sense, especially in those words: Creator of heaven and earth. In vain his uncle tried to persuade him it was false. He said that it was not God, but the evil principle that made all things that are visible; the Cathari viewed the physical world as ugly and bad, which is inconsistent with the concept of an infinitely perfect being. The boy's resolute steadiness concerned his uncle, but his father laughed at his brother's fears believing that the world would corrupt his son.

When he was 15, Peter was sent to the University of Bologna, a hotbed of licentiousness. There he met Saint Dominic, and instantly threw himself at the saint's feet to beg admission to the Order of Friar Preachers. Peter was present at the death of the founder soon after, and shared in the primitive zeal and courage of the sons of a saint. While still a student, Peter experienced a severe trial. He was publicly reprimanded and punished because a brother, passing Peter's cell late at night, thought he had heard women's voices in his room. The voices were those of angels, who frequently visited the saint: but in his humility, he thought it better to accept the punishment and say nothing about the favors God had granted him.

He was sent to the remote little Dominican convent of Jesi, in the marquisate of Ancona, to do penance, and his ordination was delayed. Peter found great strength in prayer. Nevertheless, he was human and felt the sting of the disgrace. One day he complained to the Lord: "Lord, You know that I am innocent of this: Why do you allow them to believe it?" A sorrowful voice replied from the crucifix: "And I, Peter, what have I done that they should do this to Me?" Peter complained no more.

The truth was eventually discovered, and Peter resumed his studies and was ordained to the priesthood. Peter soon became a celebrated preacher throughout northern and central Italy, and, in 1232, an inquisitor to fight against the heresy that had infected his family and others in Lombardy. Many miracles (filling 22 pages in folio in the
Acta Sanctorum) were worked through his prayers, to the rage of the heretics. Crowds nearly pressed him to death many times: some to ask his blessing, others to offer the sick to him to be cured, others to receive his holy instructions.

In one city, a prominent man had been won to heresy, because the devil, taking the form of the Blessed Virgin, appeared at the heretics' meetings and encouraged him to join them. Peter, determined to win the man back to the truth, went to the meeting and, when the devil appeared in his disguise, held up a small pyx in which he had placed a consecrated Host. "If you are the Mother of God," cried Peter, "adore your Son!" The devil fled in dismay and many were converted.

Among other miracles, he predicted that he would be murdered by heretics, who indeed waylaid him on the road between Como and Milan. Peter went to his death singing the Easter Sequence, and fell unprotesting beneath the blows of his assassins. Carino cut his head with an ax, and then his companion Dominic stabbed him. As Peter rose to his knees and commended himself to God, Carino killed him with a blow of his axe to Peter's side. One of his murderers, "Blessed" Carino, was touched by grace at the sight of a saint, was converted, and eventually became a Dominican at Forli. To him as to us, Peter had pointed out the way to heaven when he traced on the dust of the road, in his own blood, the creed that had lighted his path: "Credo in unum Deum." Peter's body was ceremoniously buried in the Dominicans' church dedicated to St. Eustorgius, in Milan, where it still rests. His head is kept separately in a crystal and gold case. So many miracles were worked at his shrine that many of the Cathari asked to be admitted to the Catholic Church (Benedictines, Dorcy, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth).

In art, Saint Peter is a Dominican with a gash or knife in his head. Occasionally, the knife is in his shoulder. Sometimes he is portrayed (1) with his finger on his lips; (2) writing
credo in unum deum in the dust as he dies; (3) stabbed in the forest with his companion; or (4) with the Virgin and four female saints appearing to him (Roeder). Peter is the patron of midwives and inquisitors and venerated in Verona (Roeder).

St. Peter of Verona for 2007

St. Peter Martyr has chosen me, and so he shall be my saint for the year 2007.

St. Peter of Verona,
please do pray for me, a miserable offender!

Born at Verona, 1206; died near Milan, 6 April, 1252. His parents were adherents of the Manichæan heresy, which still survived in northern Italy in the thirteenth century. Sent to a Catholic school, and later to the University of Bologna, he there met St. Dominic, and entered the Order of the Friars Preachers. Such were his virtues, severity of life and doctrine, talent for preaching, and zeal for the Faith, that Gregory IX made him general inquisitor, and his superiors destined him to combat the Manichæan errors. In that capacity he evangelized nearly the whole of Italy, preaching in Rome, Florence, Bologna, Genoa, and Como. Crowds came to meet him and followed him wherever he went; and conversions were numerous. He never failed to denounce the vices and errors of Catholics who confessed the Faith by words, but in deeds denied it. The Manichæans did all they could to compel the inquisitor to cease from preaching against their errors and propaganda. Persecutions, calumnies, threats, nothing was left untried.

When returning from Como to Milan, he met a certain Carino who with some other Manichæans had plotted to murder him. The assassin struck him with an axe on the head with such violence, that the holy man fell half dead. Rising to his knees he recited the first article of the Symbol of the Apostles, and offering his blood as a sacrifice to God he dipped his fingers in it and wrote on the ground the words: "Credo in Deum". The murderer then pierced his heart. The body was carried to Milan and laid in the church of St. Eustorgio, where a magnificent mausoleum, the work of Balduccio Pisano, was erected to his memory. He wrought many miracles when living, but they were even more numerous after his martyrdom, so that Innocent IV canonized him on 25 March, 1253.


I have always had a great love of the Dominican saints and Dominicans in general. And here one of them, St. Peter Martyr (of Verona) has chosen me through the Saint of the Year Devotion. Throughout my life the 25th of March has been the most significant day of the year for many, many reasons. That the Annunciation is the date of the Canonization of St. Peter of Verona, well, I am all astonishment. Yet another amazing convergence is that his Feast Day on the pre-Vatican II calendar reform is now the Feast of St. Catherine of Siena. As an Anglican priest I founded a parish named "St. Catherine of Sienna" and have been deeply devoted to her since university.

I commend this devotion to everyone.

Click on the first words of this post to learn how you too may participate in this devotion.

13 February 2007

The Prayer of Humble Access

The Prayer of Humble Access in the Book of Common Prayer, 1549, read as follows:
We do not presume to come to this thy table (o mercifull lord) trusting in our owne righteousness, but in thy manifold and great mercies: we be not woorthie so much as to gather up the cromes under thy table: but thou art the same lorde whose propertie is alwayes to haue mercie: Graunt us therefore (gracious lorde) so to eate the flesh of thy dere sonne Jesus Christ, and to drynke his bloud in these holy Misteries that we may continuallye dwell in hym, and he in us, that our synfull bodyes may bee made cleane by his body, and our soules washed through hys most precious bloud. Amen.
The prayer was docked by degree (putting "Holy Mysteries" to the axe) until in the American Episcopalian Prayer Book of 1979 it was finally shorn of some very important phrases involving the Body and Precious Blood of Our Lord -- and sadly it is that version that finds its way into the current Book of Divine Worship. HOWEVER, there will come a day for The Book of Divine Worship 2.0, and when it comes I hope The Prayer of Humble Access will look a great deal more like the 1549 Prayer or my suggested revision which follows:

We do not presume to come to this thy Table, O merciful Lord,
trusting in our own righteousness
but in thy manifold and great mercies.
We are not worthy
so much as to gather up the crumbs under thy Table,
but thou art the same Lord whose property is always to have mercy.
Grant us therefore, gracious Lord,

in these Holy Mysteries,

so to eat the Flesh of thy dear Son Jesus Christ
and to drink his Blood

made clean by his Body
and washed through by his most Precious Blood,

we may evermore dwell in him, and he in us
. Amen.

Protestant Text, Catholic Use

The Lutherans in the USA had a 'Common Eucharistic Prayer' once upon a time, and it was shaped in Book of Common Prayer language but its content was judged very Catholic by a number of scholars of an earlier period. I have always thought the prayer astonishingly captivating and was even more astonished by the number of Lutheran clergy who never used it! Be that as it may, I would like to illustrate how a Protestant text might find its way into the Catholic Church when Protestants as a group unite with Rome and are allowed to keep elements of their tradition that are consistent with the Catholic truth.

While it is perhaps doubtful today that this Lutheran 'Common Eucharistic Prayer' would ever serve as the Canon of the Mass in a Catholic context, elements of this beautiful prayer certainly can be drawn together to create a prayer of approach for the Priest and Assembly analogous to the Prayer of Humble Access in the Book of Divine Worship -- that miraculous Book of liturgies for Roman Catholics coming from the Anglican tradition. So here is the prayer as I have edited it, and who can say whether or not such a prayer might not have a future in a revised edition of the Book of Divine Worship ... with broader application in mind:

Priest and People
Holy art thou, Almighty and Merciful God.
Holy art thou, and great is the Majesty of thy Glory.
Thou didst so love the world
as to give thine only-begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth in him might not perish,
but have everlasting life.
Having come into the world
to fulfill for us thy holy will,
he accomplished all things for our salvation.
Remembering therefore his salutary precept,
his life-giving Passion and Death,
his glorious Resurrection and Ascension
and the promise of his coming again,
we give thanks to thee, O Lord God Almighty,
not as we ought, but as we are able;
and we beseech thee mercifully
to accept our praise and thanksgiving,
and with thy Word and Holy Spirit to bless us thy servants,
so that we and all who partake of Christ’s Body and Blood
may be filled with heavenly benediction and grace,
and, receiving the remission of sins,
be sanctified in soul and body,
and have our portion with all thy saints.
And unto thee, O God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
be all honour and glory in thy holy Church,
world without end. Amen.

It may well be argued that this prayer in part repeats what has already been said by the Priest in the Canon. Well, precisely so! Here I might insert some reference to Christifidelis laici but instead let me simply claim the need for repetition of the truths of the Catholic Faith within the Mass itself. Through these internal repetitions and the repeated participation in the Mass, such truths are comprehended and such prayers become not only learnt by heart but also prayers of the heart.

The Collect of the Family Uher

O mighty and merciful God, thou gavest thy Son Jesus Christ to be born of the Blessed Virgin Mary and to be guarded by the just, venerable, and blessed St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse: Keep the Holy Family ever before our eyes so that we may rightly order our own family to the glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord who with thee and the Holy Ghost art one God in glory everlasting. Amen.

A personal litany of mine

I pray this Litany both in reparation and for the Anglican Heritage now within the Roman Catholic Church.

O God the Father of Heaven,
................have mercy upon us.
O God the Son, Redeemer of the World,

................have mercy upon us.
O God the Holy Ghost, Sanctifier of the Faithful,

................have mercy upon us.
+ O Holy and Blessed Trinity, One God,
................have mercy upon us.

Our Lady of Glastonbury,
........our patroness, pray for us.
Our Lady of Walsingham, pray for us.
Our Lady of Ipswich, pray for us.
Our Lady of Willesden, pray for us.
Our Lady of Ladyewell, pray for us.

St. Joseph of Nazareth,
................Guardian of Christ the Lord, pray for us.
St. Joseph the Just,
................Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, pray for us.
St. Joseph the Builder,
................Patron of the Church, pray for us.

St. John the Forerunner of the Lord, pray for us.
St. Joseph of Arimathea,
................Disciple of the Lord, pray for us.
St. Anne and St. Joachim,
................Grandparents of the Lord, pray for us.

St. Augustine of Canterbury,
................our patron, pray for us.
St. Lucius the Confessor, pray for us.
St. Alban the Martyr, pray for us.
St. Amphibalus of Caerleon, pray for us.
St. Ursula of Cornwall, pray for us.
St. Ninian of Whithorn, pray for us.
St. Patrick, pray for us.
St. Brigid of Kildare, pray for us.
St. Breage of Wales, pray for us.
St. Gwen Teirbron (St. Blanche), pray for us.
St. Gwladys, Queen of Wales, pray for us.
St. Cadfan, pray for us.
St. Illtud, pray for us.
St. Sadwrn of Llansadwrn
St. Palladius, pray for us.
St. Paulinus of York, pray for us.
St. David of Wales, pray for us.
St. Deiniol, pray for us.
St. Maddock (Madog), pray for us.
St. Kenneth (Cynedd), pray for us.
St. Nectan (Nathan), pray for us.
St. Cadfael (Cadog the Wise), pray for us.
St. Gildas the Wise, pray for us.
St. Finnian of Wales, pray for us.
St. Columba of Iona, pray for us.
St. Triduana (Tredwell), pray for us.
St. Ternan of the Picts, pray for us.
St. Servan, pray for us.
St. Kentigern, pray for us.
St. Asaph, pray for us.
St. Constantine of Strathclyde, pray for us.
St. Adamnan, pray for us.
St. Aidan of Lindisfarne, pray for us.
St. Frideswide, pray for us.
St. Theodore of Canterbury, pray for us.
Sts. Mildred, Ermenburga, Milburga, Milgitha, pray for us.
St. Oswald, King of Northumbria, pray for us.
St. Cuthbert of Lindisfarne, pray for us.
St. Hilda of Whitby, pray for us.
St. Wilfrid, pray for us.
St. Benedict Biscop, pray for us.
Elflaeda of Whitby, pray for us.
St. Etheldreda of Ely, pray for us.
St. Aebbe the Elder, pray for us.
St. Cyneburga, pray for us.
St. Edburga of Gloucester, pray for us.
St. Adrian of Canterbury, pray for us.
St. Alfred the Great, pray for us.
St. John of Beverly, pray for us.
St. Bede the Venerable, pray for us.
St. Boniface, pray for us.
St. Lioba, pray for us.
St. Thecla, pray for us.
St. Walburga, pray for us.
St. Dunstan of Canterbury, pray for us.
St. Edith of Wilton, pray for us.
St. Alcuin of York, pray for us.
St. Anselm, Doctor of the Church, pray for us.
St. Edward the Confessor, King of England, pray for us.
St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland, pray for us.
St. Osmund, pray for us.
St. Edmund Rich, pray for us.
St. Hugh of Lincoln, pray for us.
St. William FitzHerbert of York, pray for us.
St. Thomas a Becket of Canterbury, pray for us.
St. Richard of Chichester, pray for us.
St. John Houghton, pray for us.
St. Thomas More, pray for us.
St. John Fisher, pray for us.
St. Cuthbert Mayne, pray for us.
St. Edmund Campion, pray for us.
St. Margaret Clitheroe, pray for us.
St. John Rigby, pray for us.
St. Philip Howard, pray for us.
St. Anne Line, pray for us.
St. Ralph Sherwin, pray for us.
St. John Southworth, pray for us.
St. Richard Gwyn, pray for us.
St. Robert Southwell, pray for us.
St. Nicholas Owen, pray for us.
St. John Ogilvie, pray for us.
St. Margaret Ward, pray for us.
St. Swithun Wells, pray for us.
St. Alban Roe, pray for us.
St. Oliver Plunkett, pray for us.
Blessed Martyrs of England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales,
pray for us.

O HOLY Ghost the Lord, who on Pentecost gavest the Church the gift of tongues that Christ might be known, loved and served by peoples of divers nations and customs: watch over the Anglican heritage within thy Church, we pray thee, that, led by thy guidance and strengthened by thy grace, that Anglican Heritage may find such favour in thy sight that its people may increase both in holiness and number, and so show forth thy glory; who livest and reignest with the Father and the Son, one God world without end. Amen.

12 February 2007

The Mozarabic Genius in Liturgy

A Mozarabic Prayer to Jesus Our Master
Jesus, our Master, meet us while we walk in the way, and long to reach the heavenly country; so that, following your light we may keep the way of righteousness, and never wander away into the darkness of this world's night, while you, who are the Way, the Truth, and the Life, are shining within us; for your own name's sake. Amen.

A Mozarabic Benediction
A Blessing from an edition of the Mozarabic Sacramentary
May the infinite and glorious Trinity,
the Father , the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
direct our life in good works,
and after our journey through this world,
grant us eternal rest with the saints.

Mozarabic 10th century Hymn
Attende Domine

R. Attende Domine, et miserere, quia peccavimus tibi.

V. Ad te Rex summe, omnium redemptor, oculos nostros sublevamus flentes: exaudi, Christe, supplicantum preces. R.

V. Dextera Patris, lapis angularis, via salutis, ianua caelestis, ablue nostri maculas delicti. R.

V. Rogamus, Deus, tuam maiestatem: auribus sacris gemitus exaudi: crimina nostra placidus indulge. R.

V. Tibi fatemur crimina admissa: contrito corde pandimus occulta: tua Redemptor, pietas ignoscat. R.

V. Innocens captus, nec repugnans ductus, testibus falsis pro impiis damnatus: quos redemisti, tu conserva, Christe. R.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Hearken, O Lord -- a translation of Attende Domine
Mozarabic 10th Century Hymn

R. Hearken, O Lord, and have mercy, for we have sinned against Thee.

V. Crying, we raise our eyes to Thee, Sovereign King, Redeemer of all. Listen, Christ, to the pleas of the supplicant sinners. R.

V. Thou art at the Right Hand of God the Father, the Keystone, the Way of salvation and Gate of Heaven, cleanse the stains of our sins. R.

V. O God, we beseech Thy majesty to hear our groans; to forgive our sins. R.

V. We confess to Thee our consented sins; we declare our hidden sins with contrite heart; in Thy mercy, O Redeemer, forgive them. R.

V. Thou wert captured, being innocent; brought about without resistance, condemned by impious men with false witnesses. O Christ keep safe those whom Thou hast redeemed. R.

Servant and Mother of the Word
"O most holy Servant and Mother of the Word" -- a very striking title for the Virgin Mother Mary found in a number of seventh century Mozarabic prayers including a prayer attributed to St. Ildefonso of Toledo...

Virgo Genetrix
The Mozarabic feast of the "glorious and holy Virgin Mary" established in 656 to be observed on December 18th, began with a direct address to the Holy Virgin, which would be found in other rites but not in Rome proper:

"Virgo genetrix et humani generis reparatrix;
implorantium preces auribus offer divinis"

("Virgin, who generated Christ, reparatrix for the human race,
present to the Divine attention (ears) our prayers of supplication.")

From ancient texts

From the Strasbourg Papyrus

Over this sacrifice and offering we pray and beseech thee, remember thy holy and only Catholic Church, all thy peoples and all thy flocks. Provide the peace which is from heaven in all our hearts, and grant us also peace in this life.

From the Divine Liturgy of St. Mark

Through his wisdom, the Lord created the world, the heavens, and the choirs of stars. Through his loving-kindness he made us in his image and likeness. He saved us through his mercy and blessed our mortal frames with grace upon grace.

A beautiful section from a version of the Divine Liturgy of Sts. Addai and Mari

Worthy of glory from every mouth
and thanksgiving from every tongue
and praise from every heart
is the Name above all names,
the Name worthy of all worship,
the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

11 February 2007

Home Consecration to Our Lady

To be undertaken at any time but especially on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of Mary and on the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.

Based on the renewal of consecration to the Immaculate Conception by the Catholic bishops in the USA and the Our Lady of Walsingham parish consecration to the Immaculata, with special thanks to Raven Wenner, and in honor of the legacy of Sr. Mary Ephrem:

Most Holy Trinity: Our Father in heaven, who chose Mary as the fairest of Your daughters; Holy Spirit, who chose Mary as Your spouse; God the Son, who chose Mary as Your Mother; in union with Mary, we adore Your Majesty and acknowledge Your supreme, eternal dominion and authority.

Most Holy Trinity, we also place our home into the hands of Mary Immaculate in order that she may present our home to you.

Through her we wish to thank You for our family and for the gifts You have given us in order to do Your will. Grant us holiness in doing Your will.

Through the intercession of Mary, Our Lady of America, have mercy on the Catholic Church in the United States. Have mercy and inspire with prudence and justice the civic leaders of our city, state and country. Give us grace to pray and courage to work for justice and charity.

Have mercy on our neighbors and guide them to salvation. Give us grace to bear witness to them of Jesus Christ who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Strengthen, protect, and save every marriage and our own family life. Guard and help us foster the precious gift of many religious vocations from our own family and parish.

Through the intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary our Mother, pour Your Divine Mercy on the sick, the poor, the tempted, on sinners and upon all who are in need.
Through the Immaculate Heart of Our Lady of Sorrows, consecrate our home and our country as well as Russia and the whole world by the Most Holy Cross of Christ and through the power of Your Name, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

Mary, Immaculate Virgin, Our Mother, Patroness of our land, we praise you, honor you, and give our country, our parish, our home, and ourselves to your Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart.
Pierced by the sword of sorrow prophesied by Simeon, O Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, save us from degeneration, disaster and war. Protect us from all harm. O Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, you who bore the sufferings of your Son in the depths of your heart, be our Advocate. Pray for us, that acting always according to your will which is united perfectly with the Will of your Divine Son, we may live and die pleasing to God. Amen.