Saturday, May 24, 2008

Votive Mass of the Holy Cross

Yesterday, being a Friday feria, Fr Rowe said a votive Low Mass of the Holy Cross. Several of its texts, if not all, are quite thought-provoking, particularly the Offertory, which is surely in fact a Secret set to music:

Protege, Domine, plebem tuam per signum sanctæ Crucis ab insidiis inimicorum omnium: ut tibi gratam exhibeamus servitutem, et acceptabile fiat sacrificium nostrum. Alleluja.

I have rediscovered my little book of Byzantine Rite prayers, and used it yesterday before, during, and after Mass. Since, in Australia, 1st Vespers of Our Lady Help of Christians were in order, I borrowed Fr's Breviary (since my FSSP reprint doesn't have it) to pray them, and have since borrowed from him a copy of the Australian supplementary offices.

Since it was the eve of Our Lady Help of Christians, after Mass we sang James McAuley's martial hymn, "Help of Christians guard this land", which was a fitting choice, since it also alludes to our only hope of victory, Christ and His Cross:

Help of Christians guard this land
From assault or inward stain;
Let it be what Christ has planned,
His new Eden where you reign.

Teach us that in Christ your Son
Lies the wisdom to be free;
For the cross which we would shun
Is Man's tree of liberty.

Should the powers of hell arise
And our peace be trampled down,
In that night of blood and lies
Show us still your twelve starred crown.

Take from us the coward heart,
Fleeting will, divided mind;
Give us sight to play our part
Though the world around is blind.

Image of the risen life
Shining in eternity,
Glimmer through our earthly strife,
Draw us to your victory.

After Mass we all had a chance to catch up and have a bit to eat and drink, which made a pleasant end to a good day. I'm glad that over this week I've discovered that I can both work full-time and fit in the '62 Breviary, so I think I'll stick with it now. I like the way one gets all the psalms each week.

No comments: