Saturday, August 8, 2009

Get Thee to a Nunnery

It's the feast of Blessed Mary Mackillop, foundress of the Sisters of St Joseph, who combined the active and contemplative lives in her life as a religous, she who is Australia's only saint-in-the-making - and appropriately enough I've been hard at work transcribing (for the benefit of a friend in need) yet another little-known Votive Mass from a curious manuscript in my possession....

This is (excuse the bad Italian - I speak only Propagandese dialect) what's known around Rome as the "Missa senda to a conventa", a formulary obviously of benefit to seminarians who have not yet quite been able to quiet their hearts, despite the earlier use of the Missa contra amicas. (I have previously discussed the great natural and supernatural benefit of a mass exodus from the world to convents and monasteries.)

Missa senda to a conventa

Introit (St John viii, 10b. 11b; Ps xxxix, 5)

Woman, where are they that accused thee? Hath no man condemned thee? Neither will I condemn thee. Go, and now sin no more.

Ps. Blessed is the man whose trust is in the name of the Lord; and who hath not had regard to vanities, and lying follies.

Glory be…

Non dicitur Gloria in excelsis.

Oratio (Cf. Missale Parisiense 1738, Orationes ad diversa, Pro conversione peccatoris & pro sacris Deo Virginibus)

Deus, misericors et clemens, exaudi preces quas pro sorore nostra, gementes in conspectu tuo effundimus: da famulæ tuæ excellentiam virginitatis intelligere, intellectam diligere, dilectam fideliter conservare: ut converta, ubi abundat delictum, superabundet gratia. Per…

(Merciful and clement God, graciously hear our prayers for our sister, which we pour forth weeping before Thy face: give unto Thy handmaid to know the excellence of virginity, to love that knowledge, faithfully to preserve that love: that converted, where sin abounded, grace may more abound. Through…)


Lesson from the Book of Judges (xii, 34-39a)

In those days: When Jephte returned into Maspha to his house, his only daughter met him with timbrels and with dances: for he had no other children. And when he saw her, he rent his garments, and said: Alas! my daughter, thou hast deceived me, and thou thyself art deceived: for I have opened my mouth to the Lord, and I can do no other thing. And she answered him: My father, if thou hast opened thy mouth to the Lord, do unto me whatsoever thou hast promised, since the victory hath been granted to thee, and revenge of thy enemies. And she said to her father: Grant me only this which I desire: Let me go, that I may go about the mountains for two months, and may bewail my virginity with my companions. And he answered her: Go. And he sent her away for two months. And when she was gone with her comrades and companions, she mourned her virginity in the mountains. And the two months being expired, she returned to her father, and he did to her as he had vowed, and she knew no man.

Gradual (St John iv, 17b. 18b. 27a)

Thou hast said well, I have no husband. He whom thou now hast, is not thy husband. This thou hast said truly.

V/. And immediately his disciples came; and they wondered that he talked with the woman.

Alleluia (St John ii, 4)

Alleluia, alleluia. V/. Woman, what is that to me and to thee? Alleluia.


Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to Matthew. (xix, 25-29)

At that time: When they had heard this, the disciples wondered very much, saying: Who then can be saved? And Jesus beholding, said to them: With men this is impossible: but with God all things are possible. Then Peter answering, said to him: Behold we have left all things, and have followed thee: what therefore shall we have? And Jesus said to them: Amen, I say to you, that you, who have followed me, in the regeneration, when the Son of man shall sit on the seat of his majesty, you also shall sit on twelve seats judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And every one that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall possess life everlasting.

Offertory (St John xx, 13a)

Woman, why weepest thou?

Secret (Cf. M. P. 1738, Orr. ad diversa, Pro Viduis)

Deus, cujus solius est separare, vota nostra pro famula tua clementer exaudi; ut a pedica connubii liberata, in lege Christi permanere, et tibi uni amore casto semper studeat adhærere. Per eumdem…

(God, Whose alone it is to separate, clemently hear our hopes for Thy handmaid: that delivered from the shackle of marriage, she may study to abide in the law of Christ, and ever to adhere unto Thee with one chaste love. Through the same…)

Communion (St Luke xx, 32)

Last of all the woman died also.

Postcommunion (M.P. 1738, Orr. ad diversa, Pro conversione peccatoris)

Domine Jesu Christe, Pastor bone, qui proprio corpore pascis oves, quas tuo sanguine redemisti: ovem tuam errantem require misericors; et ad ovile reportatam, pascuis redde dignam sempiternis. Qui vivis…

(Lord Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd, Who feedest Thy sheep with Thine own Body, whom by Thy Blood Thou hast redeemed: mercifully seek Thy straying sheep; and, once brought back to the sheepfold, make worthy of everlasting pastures. Who livest…)

For those who wonder about the choice of Epistle - according to some of the Fathers, Jephte fulfilled his vow by consecrating his daughter to the Lord as a holy virgin set apart; which is a nicer interpretation than the usual one:


Anonymous said...

That manuscript doesn't include a Mass for prospective Seminarians does it (and not contra Amici). ;-P

Joshua said...

I think a priest will be more than happy to offer Mass for your intentions!

The manuscript simply provides some unusual if relevant Votives - such as this one, which obviously exercises great charity: having gone to the seminary oneself, one then prays that one's ex-beloved gets an analogous grace fitting to her station...