Saturday, May 13, 2017

Sequence for the Most Holy Heart of Mary

I believe this Sequence, once used in the Diocese of Coutances, is attributed to St John Eudes:

1. Lætabunda,
Canant pie,
Corda cuncta,
Cor Mariæ.
2. Cor amandum,
Omni corde:
Cor laudandum,
Omni mente.

3. Cor æterni Numinis
En factum est Virginis
Cor æternum.
4. Hæc est Virgo sapiens,
Hæc est Virgo rapiens
Cor divinum.

5. Consors Patris dexteræ
Fit Matris Deiparæ
Cor et Natus.
6. Flos cordis Altissimi,
Flos cordis Virginei,
Flos et fructus.

7. Cordis nostri gaudium,
Exili solatium,
Cor Mariæ.
8. Amoris miraculum,
Charitatis speculum,
Liber vitæ.

9. Fons vivus charismatum,
Thesaurus fidelium,
Thronus Christi.
10. Rubus ignem proferens,
Incombustus permanens,
Fornax cæli.

11. O fornax mirifica,
In te manent socia,
Ros et flamma.
12. Ros mire vivificans,
Flamma beatificans
Corda pura.

13. Infundatur omnibus
Ros ille pectoribus,
Accendatur cordibus
Flamma sacra.
14. O Jesu Cor Mariæ,
Ros, ignis, fons gratiæ,
Ure, purga, posside
Corda cuncta. 

15. O amor, propera,
Ubique impera
In terris ut super sidera.
16. Nova præcordia,
Nova fac omnia,
Ut Jesum laudent cum Maria.
Amen. Alleluja.

Monday, April 3, 2017

First of April, Third of May

We normally have a Sunday evening Missa cantata here in Launceston on the second Sunday of each month; however, as next Sunday is Palm Sunday, a day of great liturgical exertions, our chaplain drove up from Hobart a week earlier, so we could celebrate Passion Sunday on the first Sunday, which was yesterday, the 2nd of April. Next month, something similar obtains: to avoid clashing with parish missions, the Missa cantata will be celebrated on the third Sunday, the 21st of May. As April has five Sundays this year, this means that six Sundays will intervene between our two Missæ cantatæ. I do hope those who weren't present at Mass yesterday evening hadn't missed out through their own fault by not reading the schedule! I didn't send any reminder messages as I have in the past. And people will have to pay attention to find out when the next Mass occurs, given this latest change to our schedule.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Las Huelgas

Las Huelgas was a Royal convent of Cistercian nuns… Until a few years ago one was only allowed to step into the huge bare church and look through the grille into the nuns’ choir. Now the convent of Las Huelgas has been opened by Papal permission, and it is one of the most magically beautiful places in the world. 
…no less extraordinary were the experiences of the commission who came to open the convent… a day or two before the commission left and its work was done, a feast was given to them by the abbess and the nuns. It took place at some strange hour, three or four o’clock in the morning, recalling accounts of audiences given by the Dowager-Empress of China which were at that hour; and the dishes, I was told, were either of an intolerable nastiness, or else quite exquisite in taste but entirely unfamiliar being from probably thirteenth-century recipes.
— Sacheverell Sitwell, Monks, Nuns and Monasteries (London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1965), 125 & 127.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Messe Royale and Missa de Angelis

Our small schola has mastered Henri Dumont's Messe Royale, which we have sung at all our monthly Latin Masses since it started; now, owing to a request from the congregation, we are learning the Missa de Angelis (Mass VIII and Credo III). I am aware that this setting of the Ordinary is sometimes done to death, and isn't considered the best nor the purest Gregorian chant, but it remains popular; and it is an introduction to the many other beautiful Gregorian chant Masses.

We also returned to an old favourite tonight: the Passiontide Vesper hymn, Vexilla Regis prodeunt.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Latest Launceston Monthly Mass

I haven't blogged about many of our monthly Latin Masses up here in Launceston, but thought I might mention that all continues as usual: our little choir psalm-tones the Propers, sings the Messe Royale for the Ordinary (we are starting to learn the Missa de Angelis, while I hope for us also to learn Dumont's Mass in the sixth tone) – accompanied on the organ – and adds suitable chanted pieces as motets for Offertory and Communion (this Sunday, Attende Domine and Ave verum). We have adopted the custom of singing a Marian anthem during the Last Gospel (Ave Regina cælorum at present), before a final hymn in the vernacular. Our slender resources mean that I first run the choir practice, then proceed to serve the Mass alongside Adrian, who acts as the thurifer. But best of all we thus have a simple but complete Missa cantata, doing the maximum not giving in to minimalism. Fr Suresh very kindly drives up each month – next month, he will come for the first Sunday, as he will be very busy down South for Holy Week – and celebrates Mass for us with devotion and attention, not to mention preaches a good strong sermon. Tomorrow morning, being a public holiday, he will say Low Mass at 8 am rather than 7, which Mass I will serve. So we are all very blessed: Deo gratias et Mariæ.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Colebrook Again

As I live closer to Colebrook than Hobart, I drove to St Patrick's Church again this Sunday, though earlier in the day, as the monks (I mean, Fr Prior and the pre-postulants) planned to sing Terce at 9:45 am, followed by their sung Mass at 10 am, and, as it transpired, the office of Sext a little before noon. 

Being able to join in their solemn, public worship by attending both those Little Hours was a great privilege, as was participating in the supernatural joy of the Missa cantata for the First Sunday of Lent, most fitly adorned by their singing of its magnificent Gregorian propers, all taken from Psalm 90 (the only concession to their small numbers being the psalm-toning of the even verses of the Tract, which even so lasted about six minutes), not to mention the chanting of Mass XVII and Credo I. I was able to join confidently in the Ordinary, all the responses and also the Introit, which shares its melody with that of Trinity Sunday, whose chant I learnt long years ago.

Please do join in prayer that the monastic community of Notre Dame Priory finds its permanent home soon. St Joseph, pray for us.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Quinquagesima at Colebrook

I had a meeting to attend in Colebrook this afternoon, and, having found out that Fr Pius hoped to celebrate Mass at the church there, decided to shave 50 km off my usual drive to the Latin Mass in Hobart, plus make my meeting in good time, by going to the Priory Mass at 11 am at St Patrick's. It was nice to have a later start in the morning and an easier drive…

Because the beautifully restored Pugin-designed church has an intact rood screen, and the front pews have been placed antiphonally with the choir lectern in the midst for the monastic Office, taking my place in the first of the pews placed lengthwise across the church I had a view as it were into the gem-studded casket that is the sanctuary, within which space, and most especially before the altar, the holy of holies at its upper end, the sacred liturgy unfolded before me and the others in the congregation.

The Prior was the celebrant, and his first five candidates the servers, of the Missa cantata, preceded by the Asperges as usual. I was moved by the engaging detail that Fr Pius led the singing of the Gregorian Propers and Ordinary (Mass XI & Credo I), with the rest of the servers forming the choir – he himself sang the Gradual alone, and psalm-toned the Tract (the only concession to their small numbers). 

Father preached – as one would expect – a detailed, focussed and liturgically-illuminated homily, reminding us that the Lord in today's Gospel foretells his Passion and Resurrection, while the Apostle emphasises in the Epistle, given our Lenten penance about to begin, that all our doings without charity are worthless. 

After Mass, the altar party moved to the Lady Altar, where before Our Lady of Colebrook they sang Sub tuum, before invoking Our Lady of Cana, praying the following prayer to St Joseph for the success of their just-established monastic foundation, and finally invoking St Mary of the Cross, before returning to the sacristy.
Prayer to St Joseph attributed to St Francis de Sales 
Glorious Saint Joseph, Spouse of Mary, grant us, we beseech thee, thy paternal protection, through the Heart of Jesus Christ. O thou whose infinite power reaches out to all our needs, rendering possible for us that which is impossible, look upon the concerns of thy children with thy fatherly countenance. In the troubles and sorrows that afflict us, we have confident recourse to thee. Deign to take under thy loving protection this important and difficult endeavour, the cause of our worries, and dispose its success to the glory of God and to the benefit of His faithful servants. Amen.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

St Maravillas

Friends in Hobart swear by St Maravillas – they always get a parking spot when they invoke her. St Maria de las Maravillas de Jesus (Mary of the Marvels of Jesus), famous spiritual daughter of St Teresa, reviver of her spirit, and ornament of Carmel (1891-1974), certainly has the most suitable name when it comes to praying for God to intervene, be it for small or great favours; here is my prayer to her:

Aña. Cantate Domino canticum novum, quia mirabilia fecit. 
V. Magna et mirabilia sunt opera tua, Domine Deus omnipotens.
R. Justæ et veræ sunt viæ tuæ, Rex sæculorum. 
Domine Deus, qui magnalia fecisti pro nobis: concede propitius, intercessione beatæ Mariæ de Mirabilibus Jesu, ut videamus mirabilia hodie. Per eumdem Christum Dominum nostrum. R. Amen. 
Ant. Sing unto the Lord a new song: for he hath worked wonders. (Ps. 97, 1) 
V. Great and wonderful are thy works, O Lord God Almighty.
R. Just and true are thy ways, O King of the ages. (Apoc. 15, 3) 
Let us pray. 
O Lord God, who hast done great things for us (cf. Ps. 125, 3), graciously grant, at the intercession of blessed Maria Maravillas of Jesus, that we may see wonders today (cf. Luke 5, 26), through the same Christ our Lord. R. Amen.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Foundation Day

I headed off bright and early this morning to drive the 150 km south to Colebrook, arriving at 9:45 am. Gradually more and more familiar faces arrived. For we were all assembled with our Archbishop, well over a hundred laity and clergy together, to celebrate the foundation today of Notre Dame Priory at St Patrick’s, a beautiful Pugin-designed church that has waited 160 years for this great day, when, as we all remarked afterward, it was finally used for what it was built for: the full traditional liturgy of Solemn High Mass coram archiepiscopo in the late morning and Solemn Vespers mid-afternoon. The servers were the five young men who are the first candidates for the monastic life to arrive and begin the foundation, for the present in temporary accommodation in Lindisfarne; more will arrive in due course. 

The Mass Propers of the Chair of St Peter were expertly sung by Ronan and friends, as was the Ordinary of the Mass (Mass IV and the little-used Credo V), all sensitively accompanied by Stephen Smith on the church’s recently-installed organ. His Grace preached, and, the sacred mysteries consummated and received, Fr Prior gave a speech of thanks after the Last Gospel, before a final Sub tuum at the Lady Altar together with prayer to St Joseph and invocations of St Mary of the Cross, secondary patroness of the new monastery, and of St Patrick, titular of the church. The morning liturgy lasted an hour and forty minutes all told.

We decamped to the Colebrook Hall for luncheon, where all and sundry had a great time catching up, toasting the foundation and delighting in such a joyful day. Afterwards, I had time to stroll around the little township before returning to church for Solemn Vespers (again expertly sung, lasting about 35 minutes) followed by Benediction (at exposition, Jesu dulcis memoria, then silent adoration, the usual Tantum ergo &c. before the blessing, the Divine Praises afterward, and at reposition the Benedictine Te decet laus), concluding at 5:30 pm.

After final farewells, I set off for home at six o’clock, and got back by eight. A wonderful day!

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Inaugural Prayers

As the leader of the free world will be sworn in today, it is most needful that we pray for him, to whom the greatest earthly authority is entrusted; and I turn to the words of the classical Anglican and Episcopalian liturgies to do so:

PSALM 46. Deus noster refugium.
GOD is our hope and strength : a very present  help in trouble.
2 Therefore will we not fear, though the earth be moved : and though the hills be carried into the midst of the sea;
3 Though the waters thereof rage and swell : and though the mountains shake at the tempest of the same.
4 The rivers of the flood thereof shall make glad the city of God : the holy place of the tabernacle of the most Highest.
5 God is in the midst of her, therefore shall she not be removed : God shall help her, and that right early.
6 The heathen make much ado, and the kingdoms are moved : but God hath shewed his voice, and the earth shall melt away.
7 The Lord of hosts is with us : the God of Jacob is our refuge.
8 O come hither, and behold the works of the Lord : what destruction he hath brought upon the earth.
9 He maketh wars to cease in all the world : he breaketh the bow, and knappeth the spear in sunder, and burneth the chariots in the fire.
10 Be still then, and know that I am God : I will be exalted among the heathen, and I will be exalted in the earth.
11 The Lord of hosts is with us : the God of Jacob is our refuge.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son : and to the Holy Ghost;
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be : world without end. Amen.

Let us pray.

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.

OUR Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, in earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; And forgive us our trespasses, As we forgive them that trespass against us; And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil. Amen.

A Prayer for The President of the United States, and all in Civil Authority
O LORD, our heavenly Father, the high and mighty Ruler of the universe, who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers upon earth; Most heartily we beseech thee, with thy favour to behold and bless thy servant THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, and all others in authority; and so replenish them with the grace of thy Holy Spirit, that they may always incline to thy will, and walk in thy way. Endue them plenteously with heavenly gifts; grant them in health and prosperity long to live; and finally, after this life, to attain everlasting joy and felicity; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

2 Corinthians 13. 14.
THE grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with us all evermore. Amen.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

The Three Bishops' Appeal in Seven Languages

I assume that the Appeal for Prayer was written by Bishop Schneider in German originally, but I have no knowledge of either language. If anyone can leave a comment as to which version sounds the most idiomatic, natural and untranslated, so to speak, I would be interested. According to an Italian site, these are the seven languages in which the Appeal has been released – again, if there are others, please leave a comment and link thereto.

Update: as Bishop Schneider speaks German, Russian, Italian and Portuguese, and also knows English and French, not to mention Latin and Greek, he may well have written each of these different versions, except for the Polish and Spanish ones.


Un appel urgent à la prière : pour que le Pape François confirme la praxis immuable de l’Église à l’égard de la vérité et de l’indissolubilité du mariage.


Appeal to prayer: That Pope Francis may confirm the unchanging praxis of the Church with regard to the truth of the indissolubility of marriage.


Appello alla preghiera: perché Papa Francesco confermi la prassi immutabile della Chiesa riguardo alla verità dell’indissolubilità del matrimonio


Wezwanie do modlitwy: Aby Papież Franciszek potwierdził niezmienną praktykę Kościoła względem prawdy o nierozerwalności małżeństwa.


Apelo universal à oração para que o Santo Padre confirme a imutável prática da Igreja relativa à verdade sobre a indissolubilidade do matrimónio.


Llamada a la oración: para que el Papa Francisco confirme la práctica invariable de la Iglesia sobre la verdad de la indisolubilidad del Matrimonio


Aufruf zum Gebet: damit Papst Franziskus die unveränderliche Praxis der Kirche von der Wahrheit der Unauflöslichkeit der Ehe bekräftige

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Kazakh Bishops Appeal for Prayer

In Malta, it is easy to be a cultural Catholic: everyone there is Catholic, and everyone goes to church – or rather, they were and did. The temptation in Malta is to go with the flow, to live an increasingly secular life, while remaining nominally Catholic, like almost everyone else.

In Kazakhstan, to be a Catholic is countercultural (only 1.6% of the population is Catholic), and to go to church, to live as a practising Catholic, is profoundly countercultural.

It thus is unsurprising that, while the Archbishop of Malta and the Bishop of Gozo have fallen away grievously from the Faith, by wickedly teaching lies to their people – since anyone who says an unrepentant practising adulterer can worthily receive Communion is a heretic who promotes schism – the Archbishop of Maria Sanctissima in Astana, his well-known auxiliary Bishop, and the Archbishop-Emeritus of nearby Karaganda have instead most worthily and definitely reaffirmed the teachings of the Catholic Apostolic Faith regarding this very issue, denouncing attempts of others to do as the feckless Maltese episcopate has done, and appealing to the Supreme Pontiff for his decisive intervention against such false teachings: ‘that Pope Francis may revoke in an unequivocal manner those pastoral guidelines, which permit the divorced and so-called “remarried” to receive the sacraments of Penance and Eucharist without asking them to fulfil the obligation of a life in continence.’

They ask all the faithful – throughout the Universal Church – to join in prayer for this intention, especially as previous appeals to the Holy Father have so far gone nowhere. The daily prayers suggested are either part of the Rosary or the following traditional petition for the Pope, and acclamation of his God-given role, as drawn from Sacred Scripture:

Oremus pro Pontifice nostro Francisco: 

Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum, et beatum faciat eum in terra, et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum ejus. (Ps. xl, 3) 

Tu es Petrus, et super hanc petram ædificabo Ecclesiam meam, et portæ inferi non prævalebunt adversus eam. (Matt. xvi, 18) 
(Let us pray for Francis our Pope: 
(The Lord preserve him and give him life, and make him blessed upon the earth, and deliver him not up to the will of his enemies. 
(Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.)