Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Feast of St Matthew (September 21)

Nocturn I: (Common of Evangelists)

Reading 1:  From the beginning of the book of Ezekiel - Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, on the fifth day of the month, when I was in the midst of the captives by the river Chobar, the heavens were opened, and I saw the visions of God. On the fifth day of the month, the same was the fifth year of the captivity of king Joachin, The word of the Lord came to Ezechiel the priest the son of Buzi in the land of the Chaldeans, by the river Chobar: and the hand of the Lord was there upon him.

R. Ecce ego mitto vos sicut oves in médio lupórum, dicit Dóminus: * Estóte ergo prudéntes sicut serpéntes, et símplices sicut colúmbæ.
V. Dum lucem habétis, crédite in lucem, ut fílii lucis sitis.
R. Estóte ergo prudéntes sicut serpéntes, et símplices sicut colúmbæ.
R. Behold, I send you as sheep in the midst of wolves, said the Lord: * Be ye, therefore, wise as serpents and simple as doves.
V. Whilst you have the light, believe in the light, that you may be the children of light.
R. Be ye therefore wise as serpents and simple as doves.

Reading 2: And I saw, and behold a whirlwind came out of the north: and a great cloud, and a fire infolding it, and brightness was about it: and out of the midst thereof, that is, out of the midst of the fire, as it were the resemblance of amber. And in the midst thereof the likeness of four living creatures: and this was their appearance: there was the likeness of a man in them. Every one had four faces, and every one four wings. Their feet were straight feet, and the sole of their foot was like the sole of a calf's foot, and they sparkled like the appearance of glowing brass.

R. Tóllite iugum meum super vos, dicit Dóminus, et díscite a me, quia mitis sum et húmilis corde: * Iugum enim meum suáve est, et onus meum leve.
V. Et inveniétis réquiem animábus vestris.
R. Iugum enim meum suáve est, et onus meum leve.
R. Take up my yoke upon you, said the Lord, and learn of me, because I am meek, and humble of heart. * For my yoke is sweet and my burden light.
V. And you shall find rest to your souls.
R. For my yoke is sweet and my burden light.

Reading 3: And they had the hands of a man under their wings on their four sides: and they had faces, and wings on the four sides, And the wings of one were joined to the wings of another. They turned not when they went: but every one went straight forward. And as for the likeness of their faces: there was the face of a man, and the face of a lion on the right side of all the four: and the face of an ox, on the left side of all the four: and the face of an eagle over all the four.

R. Dum stetéritis ante reges et prǽsides, nolíte cogitáre quómodo aut quid loquámini:* Dábitur enim vobis in illa hora, quid loquámini.
V. Non enim vos estis qui loquímini: sed Spíritus Pátris vestri, qui lóquitur in vobis.
R. Dábitur enim vobis in illa hora, quid loquámini.
R. But when they shall deliver you up to the judges, take no thought how or what to speak:
* for it shall be given you in that hour what to speak:
V. For it is not you that speak, but the spirit of your Father that speaketh in you.
R. For it shall be given you in that hour what to speak.

Reading 4: And their faces, and their wings were stretched upward: two wings of every one were joined, and two covered their bodies: And every one of them went straight forward: whither the impulse of the spirit was to go, thither they went: and they turned not when they went.

R: Fuerunt sine querela ante Dominum, et ab invicem non sunt separati; * Calicem Domini biberunt et amici Dei facti sunt.
V: Tradiderunt corpora sua ad supplicia;
ideo coronantur et accipiunt palmam
R: Calicem Domini biberunt et amici Dei facti sunt.
V: Gloria Patri..
R: Tradiderunt...
R: They were without blame before the Lord and were not divided from each other. * They drank from the Lord's chalice and were made friends of God.
V: They handed their bodies to chastisement for the sake of God and therefore they are crowned and accept the palm
R: They drank from the Lord's chalice and were made friends of God.

Nocturn II

Reading 5: It came to pass one day at Capernaum, that Christ went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom; and He said unto him: Follow Me. And he left all, rose up, and followed Him. And Levi made Him a great feast in his own house. This Levi is the Apostle and Evangelist Matthew. After that Christ was risen again from the dead, and while he was yet in Judea, before he set forth for that land which had fallen to the lot of his preaching, he wrote the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the Hebrew tongue, for the sake of them of the circumcision who had believed. His was the first written of the four Gospels. Thereafter he went to Ethiopia, and there preached the Gospel, confirming his preaching with many miracles.

R. Vidi coniúnctos viros, habéntes spléndidas vestes, et Ángelus Dómini locútus est ad me, dicens:* Isti sunt viri sancti facti amíci Dei.
V. Vidi Ángelum Dei fortem, volántem per médium cælum, voce magna clamántem et dicéntem.
R. Isti sunt viri sancti facti amíci Dei.
R. I saw men standing together, clad in shining raiment, and the Angel of the Lord spake unto me, saying * These men are holy, for they are the friends of God.
V. I saw a strong Angel of God fly into the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice
R. These men are holy, for they are the friends of God.

Reading 6: Of his miracles, the most notable was that he raised the King's daughter from the dead, and thereby brought to believe in Christ the King her father, his wife, and all that region. After that the King was dead, Hirtacus, who came after him, was fain to take his daughter Iphigenia to wife, but by the exhortation of Matthew she had made vow of her maidenhood to God, and stood firm to that holy resolution, for which cause Hirtacus commanded to slay the Apostle at the Altar while he was performing the mystery. He crowned the dignity of the Apostleship with the glory of martyrdom upon the 21 st day of September. His body had been brought to Salerno, where it was afterwards buried in a Church dedicated in his name during the papacy of Gregory VII, and there it is held in great worship and sought to by great gatherings of people.

R. Beáti estis, cum maledíxerint vobis hómines, et persecúti vos fúerint, et díxerint omne malum advérsum vos, mentiéntes, propter me: * Gaudéte et exsultáte, quóniam merces vestra copiósa est in cælis.
V. Cum vos óderint hómines, et cum separáverint vos, et exprobráverint, et eiécerint nomen vestrum tamquam malum propter Fílium hóminis.
R. Gaudéte et exsultáte, quóniam merces vestra copiósa est in cælis.
R. Blessed are ye when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake;* Rejoice, and be exceeding glad, for great is your reward in heaven.
V. When men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man's sake.
R. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad, for great is your reward in heaven.

Reading 7: From the Exposition of St Gregory the Great on the Prophet Ezekiel - The Prophet writeth very minutely touching the four holy living creatures, whom he saw in the spirit as being to come. He saith Every one had four faces, and every one had four wings. What signifieth the face save likeness whereby we are known? or wings, save the power to fly? since it is by the face that man is known from man, and by their wings that the birds' bodies are carried up into the air. So the face pertaineth to certitude, and the wings to contemplation. With certitude we are known of God Almighty, Who saith: I am the Good Shepherd, and know My sheep, and am known of Mine.  And again: I know whom I have chosen.

R. Isti sunt triumphatóres et amíci Dei, qui contemnéntes iussa príncipum, meruérunt præmia ætérna: * Modo coronántur, et accípiunt palmam.
V. Isti sunt qui venérunt ex magna tribulatióne, et lavérunt stolas suas in sánguine Agni.
R. Modo coronántur, et accípiunt palmam.

R. These are they which have conquered, and are become the friends of God, who recked not of the commandments of princes, and earned the everlasting reward. * And now have they crowns on their heads, and palms in their hands.
V. These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb.
R. And now have they crowns on their heads, and palms in their hands.

Reading 8: And by contemplation, whereby we rise above ourselves, we as it were fly heavenwards."Verily one had four faces" four faces, that is, and one body. If thou seek to know what Matthew teacheth concerning the Incarnation of the Lord, he teacheth no other doctrine than teacheth Mark, or Luke, or John. If thou seek to know what John teacheth, it is beyond all doubt that his doctrine is the doctrine of Matthew, and Mark, and Luke. If thou ask concerning Mark, he hath that which hath Matthew, and John, and Luke. If thou wilt know of Luke, know that he teacheth as doth Matthew, and Mark, and John.

 R: Constitues eos principes super omnem terram memores erun nominis tui Domine memores erunt nominis tui * In omni progenie et generatione
V: Nimis honorificati sunt amici tui, Deus; nimis confortatus est principatus eorum.
R: In omni progenie et generatione
V: Gloria Patri...
R: In omni progenie et generatione
R: Thou shalt make them princes over all the earth.They shall remember thy name * Throughout all generations.
V: Thy friends, O God, are made exceedingly honourable: their principality is exceedingly strengthened.
R: Throughout all generations.
V: Glory be...
R: Throughout all generations. 

Nocturn III 

Reading 9: From the Holy Gospel according to Matthew: At that time, Jesus saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom; and He saith unto him Follow Me. And so on.

Homily of St Jerome - The other Evangelists, out of tenderness towards the reputation and honour of Matthew, have abstained from speaking of him as a publican by his ordinary name, and have called him Levi. Both names were his. But Matthew himself, according to what Solomon saith: The just man is the first to accuse himself, and again, in another place: Declare thou thy sins that thou mayest be justified, doth plainly call himself Matthew the publican, to show unto his readers that none need be hopeless of salvation if he will but strive to do better, since he himself had been all of a sudden changed from a publican into an Apostle.

R. Isti sunt qui vivéntes in carne, plantavérunt Ecclésiam sánguine suo: * Cálicem Dómini bibérunt, et amíci Dei facti sunt.
V. In omnem terram exívit sonus eórum, et in fines orbis terræ verba eórum.
R. Cálicem Dómini bibérunt, et amíci Dei facti sunt.
R. These are they who while yet they lived in the flesh, planted the Church in their own blood;* They drank of the Lord's cup, and became the friends of God.
V. Their sound is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.
R. They drank of the Lord's cup, and became the friends of God.

Reading 10: Porphyry and the Emperor Julian (the Apostate) will have it that the account of this call of Matthew is either a stupid blunder on the part of a lying writer, or else that it showeth what fools they were who followed the Saviour, to go senselessly after any one who called them. But there can be no doubt that before the Apostles believed they had considered the great signs and works of power which had gone before.

R. Isti sunt viri sancti, quos elégit Dóminus in caritáte non ficta, et dedit illis glóriam sempitérnam: * Quorum doctrína fulget Ecclésia, ut sole luna.
V. Sancti per fidem vicérunt regna: operáti sunt iustítiam.
R. Quorum doctrína fulget Ecclésia, ut sole luna.
R. These men are saints, whom the Lord hath chosen in love unfeigned, and hath given them glory everlasting. These are they * By the light of whose teaching the Church is glorified, even as the moon is glorified by the light of the sun.
V. The saints through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness.
R. By the light of whose teaching the Church is glorified, even as the moon is glorified by the light of the sun.

Reading 11: Moreover, the glory and majesty of the hidden God, which shone somewhat through the Face of the Man Christ Jesus, were enough to draw them which gazed thereon, even at first sight. For if there be in a stone a magnetic power which can make rings and straws and rods come and cleave thereunto, how much more must not the Lord of all creatures have been able to draw unto Himself them whom He called?

R: Qui sunt isti qui ut nubes volant,* Et quasi columbae ad fenestras suas?
V: In omnem terram exivit sonus eorum, et in fines orbis terrae verba eorum.
R: Et quasi columbae ad fenestras suas?
R: Who are these, that fly as clouds, * And as doves to their windows?
V: Their sound hath gone forth into all the earth: and their words unto the ends of the world.
R: And as doves to their windows? 

Reading 12: And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with Him. They saw how that a publican who had turned to better things had found a place of repentance, and therefore they also hoped for salvation. It was not, as the Scribes and Pharisees complained, sinners clinging to their sinfulness who came to Jesus, but sinners repenting, as indeed appeareth from the next words of the Lord, where He saith: I will have mercy and not sacrifice; for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. The Lord went to eat with sinners to the end that He might have occasion to teach, and to break spiritual bread unto them which bade Him.

R. Non sunt loquelae neque sermones, quorum no audiantur voces eorum * In omnem terram exivit sonus eorum, et in fines orbis terrae verba eorum.
V. Nimis honorati sunt amici tui Deus, nimis confortatus est principatus eorum.
R. In omnem terram exivit sonus eorum, et in fines orbis terrae verba eorum.
V: Gloria Patri
R. In omnem terram exivit sonus eorum, et in fines orbis terrae verba eorum.
R. There are no speeches nor languages, where their voices are not heard.* Their sound hath gone forth into all the earth: and their words unto the ends of the world.
V. Your friends O Lord * are made exceedingly honourable: their principality is exceedingly strengthened.
R. Their sound hath gone forth into all the earth: and their words unto the ends of the world.
V: Glory be...
R. Their sound hath gone forth into all the earth: and their words unto the ends of the world.


Gospel: Matthew 9

As he passed further on his way, Jesus saw a man called Matthew sitting at work in the customs-house, and said to him, Follow me; and Matthew rose from his place and followed him.  And afterwards, when he was taking a meal in the house, many publicans and sinners were to be found at table with him and his disciples.  The Pharisees saw this, and asked his disciples, How comes it that your master eats with publicans and sinners?  Jesus heard it, and said, It is not those who are in health that have need of the physician, it is those who are sick.  Go home and find out what the words mean, It is mercy that wins favour with me, not sacrifice. I have come to call sinners, not the just.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Ember Wednesday of September

Note that the responsories are not the same as those used in the Roman Office.

Reading 1: Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to Mark - At that time, one of the multitude answered and said unto Jesus: Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit. And so on.

Homily by the Venerable Bede, Priest at Jarrow - Concerning this possessed person whom the Lord healed, after that He was come down from the mount, Mark saith that he was deaf and dumb, and that he was lunatic. He was a figure of them of whom it is said: A fool changeth as the moon. These are they who continue never in one stay, but change now to one sin, and now to another, waxing and waning dumb, in that they confess not the faith deaf, in that they have no ears for the word of truth. They foam at the mouth also, and pine away with folly. For it is the way with idiots, and swooners, and stupified, to foam their spittle out at their mouths. They gnash their teeth when they are inflamed with the heat of passion. They wither up in the paralysis of sloth and live nerveless lives unbraced by any strong exercise.

R. Tribulatiónes civitátum audívimus, quas passæ sunt, et defécimus: timor et hebetúdo mentis cécidit super nos et super liberos nostros: ipsi montes nolunt recipere fugam nostram:
* Dómine, miserére.
V. Peccávimus cum pátribus nostris, iniúste egimus, iniquitátem fécimus.
R. Dómine, miserére.
R. We have heard of the tribulation of those cities, which they have suffered, and we have fainted. Fear and confusion of mind are fallen upon us. Even the mountains will not give us a refuge. * Lord, have mercy.
V. We have sinned like our forefathers, we have done unjustly, and wrought iniquity.
R. Lord, have mercy.

Reading 2: The father saith: And I spake to thy disciples, that they should cast him out, and they could not. Here he maketh a sort of accusation against the Apostles. But that cures cannot be wrought is sometimes owing, not to the powerlessness of them that would heal, but to the want of faith in them that are to be healed as saith the Lord: According to your faith be it unto you. Matth. ix. 29. He answereth him, and saith: O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you The meek and lowly One, Who, as a lamb before his shearers, is dumb, so opened not His Mouth, was not wearied out of patience, nor did He break out into words of passion, but He spake as a physician might speak, who saw that the sick man did contrary to his commands. Wherefore should I come unto thine house? How long am I to throw away the exercise of my skill, while I order one thing and thou dost another?

R: Audite filii mei, patrem vestrum: servite Domino in veritate, et inquirite ut faciatis quæ placita sunt illi: et filiis vestris mandate * Ut faciant justitias et eleemosynas,
V: Ut sint memores Dei, et benedicant eum in omni tempore in veritate, et in tota virtute sua.
R: Ut faciant justitias et eleemosynas
R: Hearken my children, to your father: serve the Lord in truth, and seek to do the things that please him: and command your children:* That they do justice and almsdeeds
V: That they be mindful of God, and bless him at all times in truth, and with all their power.
R: That they do justice and almsdeeds

Reading 3: And He said unto them: This kind can come forth by nothing but by prayer and fasting. While He teacheth the Apostles how the very worst kind of devil must be driven out, He giveth unto all of us an instruction unto life, that we may know that the most grievous trials, either from unclean spirits, or from men, are to be overcome by fasting and prayer. The wrath of the Lord also, when it is kindled to take vengeance of our sins, can be turned away by this remedy only. To fast, in a general sense, is not only to abstain from meats, but to restrain oneself from all the enticements of the flesh, and from all evil passions. So also, to pray, is not only to call in words for the mercy of God, but also, in all things which we do, in earnestness of faith to worship our Maker.



R. Benedícat te Dóminus in virtúte sua, qui per te ad níhilum redégit inimícos nostros:  * Ut non defíciat laus tua de ore hóminum.
V. Benedíctus Dóminus qui creávit cælum et terram; quia hódie nomen tuum ita magnificávit.
R. Ut non defíciat laus tua de ore hóminum.
V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
R. Ut non defíciat laus tua de ore hóminum.
R. The Lord bless thee by His power, Who hath brought our enemies to nought through thee.
* And may the praise of thee never fail from the mouth of men.
V. Blessed be the Lord, Who hath created the heaven and the earth, because that He hath so glorified thy name this day.
R. And may the praise of thee never fail from the mouth of men.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
R. And may the praise of thee never fail from the mouth of men.


Monday, 18 September 2017

Tobit and our response to adversity: lectio notes


Tobit and his wife Anna
Abraham De Pape (c. 1658), National Gallery of London


At Matins on Sunday we commenced reading the book of Tobit, which I have to admit is one of my absolute favourites, and whose precepts St Benedict draws quite heavily on in his Rule.

But I want to focus particularly on the Matin's responsories for Tobit, as I think they provide a great summary of some of the key points of the book, and singing them provides a nice way of meditating on, and appropriating the message of the text.  The first one I want to look at is from Tobit 3.

But first a quick refresher by way of context.

The book of Tobit

The story starts, you will recall, with Tobit senior, who had been one of the few who had resisted the idolatry of the last days before the destruction of Jerusalem.  Taken captive, he kept the law and continued to carry out the works of mercy.  He was given a great deal of freedom by King Salmanasar, but fell afoul of his son King Sennacherib, saved only by the king's assassination (chapter 1).

In chapter 2, we are told that Tobit has resumed his practice of burying the dead left lying in the streets (despite warnings from his friends and family to learn from his experience under Sennacherib), and in the process is blinded by bird droppings while he sleeps outside, exhausted from this good works.

Tobit explicitly builds on the book of Job (which the last two Sundays covered).  In chapter two we are told that Tobit's blindness, was, like Job's, permitted by way of an example to us:
Now this trial the Lord therefore permitted to happen to him, that an example might be given to posterity of his patience, as also of holy Job. For whereas he had always feared God from his infancy, and kept his commandments, he repined not against God because the evil of blindness had befallen him, But continued immovable in the fear of God, giving thanks to God all the days of his life.  
How to respond to adversity

Chapter 3 of the book presents us with two role models in how to respond to adversity, even when we feel we would rather die then continue to suffer.

First, we are told that Tobit responds to his blindness by prayer with tears, acknowledging his sinfulness, and those of the nation that led to the punishment of the Exile:
Then Tobias sighed, and began to pray with tears, Saying: Thou art just, O Lord, and all thy judgments are just, and all thy ways mercy, and truth, and judgment: And now, O Lord, think of me, and take not revenge of my sins, neither remember my offences, nor those of my parents. For we have not obeyed thy commandments, therefore are we delivered to spoil and to captivity, and death, and are made a fable, and a reproach to all nations, amongst which thou hast scattered us.  And now, O Lord, great are thy judgments, because we have not done according to thy precepts, and have not walked sincerely before thee: And now, O Lord, do with me according to thy will, and command my spirit to be received in peace: for it is better for me to die, than to live.
The second role model is Sara, whose seven husbands had each been murdered on her wedding night by a demon, and who is verbally attacked by serving maid, responds to her sharply, and then retreats to her rooms to fast and pray for three days and nights:
At these words she went into an upper chamber of her house: and for three days and three nights did neither eat nor drink: But continuing in prayer with tears besought God, that he would deliver her from this reproach. And it came to pass on the third day, when she was making an end of her prayer, blessing the Lord, She said: Blessed is thy name, O God of our fathers: who when thou hast been angry, wilt shew mercy, and in the time of tribulation forgivest the sins of them that call upon thee. To thee, O Lord, I turn my face, to thee I direct my eyes.  I beg, O Lord, that thou loose me from the bond of this reproach, or else take me away from the earth.
The chapter ends on a positive note, with God hearing their prayers, and sending St Raphael the archangel to fix things:
At that time the prayers of them both were heard in the sight of the glory of the most high God: And the holy angel of the Lord, Raphael was sent to heal them both, whose prayers at one time were rehearsed in the sight of the Lord.
The responsory text pulls together sections from verses 3, 4 and 15, focusing us on acknowledging not just our own sins, but those of those who have shaped our current circumstances, and reminding us of God's justice, truth and mercy, and above all, our hope of redemption:

R. Peto, Dómine, ut de vinculo improperii hujus absolvas me, aut certe désuper terram erípias me: * Ne reminiscáris delícta mea vel paréntum meórum, neque vindíctam sumas de peccátis meis: quia eruis sustinéntes te, Dómine.
V. Omnia enim judícia tua justa sunt, et omnes viæ tuæ misericórdia et véritas: et nunc, Dómine, meménto mei.
R. Ne reminiscáris delícta mea vel paréntum meórum, neque vindíctam sumas de peccátis meis: quia eruis sustinéntes te, Dómine.
R. I entreat thee, O Lord, that thou wouldest loose me from this reproach, or that thou wouldest take me away from the earth: * Remember not mine offences nor the offences of my forefathers, neither take thou vengeance of my sins; for thou, O Lord, art a Redeemer unto all that hope in thee.
V. For all thy judgements are just, and all thy ways are mercy and truth; and now, O Lord, remember me.
R. Remember not mine offences nor the offences of my forefathers, neither take thou vengeance of my sins; for thou, O Lord, art a Redeemer unto all that hope in thee.
.
Chants for the responsory can be found in the Liber Responsorialis (pg 423), the Nocturnale Romanum (pg 587) or online at Gregofacsimil  (but with an alternate verse, from the book of Wisdom). 

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Third Sunday of September/Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost

The translations provided below are informal ones for study and devotional use only, largely taken from the Divinum Officium website.  The translations for responsories 4, 8, 9 and 10 are drawn from the Douay-Rheims translations of the Scriptural texts.

Nocturn I: Tobit 1:1-15

Reading 1: The beginning of the book of Tobit - Tobias of the tribe and city of Nephtali, (which is in the upper parts of Galilee above Naasson, beyond the way that leadeth to the west, having on the right hand the city of Sephet,). When he was made captive in the days of Salmanasar king of the Assyrians, even in his captivity, forsook not the way of truth, But every day gave all he could get to his brethren his fellow captives, that were of his kindred. And when he was younger than any of the tribe of Nephtali, yet did he no childish thing in his work.

R. Peto, Dómine, ut de vinculo improperii hujus absolvas me, aut certe désuper terram erípias me: * Ne reminiscáris delícta mea vel paréntum meórum, neque vindíctam sumas de peccátis meis: quia eruis sustinéntes te, Dómine.
V. Omnia enim judícia tua justa sunt, et omnes viæ tuæ misericórdia et véritas: et nunc, Dómine, meménto mei.
R. Ne reminiscáris delícta mea vel paréntum meórum, neque vindíctam sumas de peccátis meis: quia eruis sustinéntes te, Dómine.
R. I entreat thee, O Lord, that thou wouldest loose me from this reproach, or that thou wouldest take me away from the earth: * Remember not mine offences nor the offences of my forefathers, neither take thou vengeance of my sins; for thou, O Lord, art a Redeemer unto all that hope in thee.
V. For all thy judgements are just, and all thy ways are mercy and truth; and now, O Lord, remember me.
R. Remember not mine offences nor the offences of my forefathers, neither take thou vengeance of my sins; for thou, O Lord, art a Redeemer unto all that hope in thee.

Reading 2: Moreover when all went to the golden calves which Jeroboam king of Israel had made, he alone fled the company of all, And went to Jerusalem to the temple of the Lord, and there adored the Lord God of Israel, offering faithfully all his firstfruits, and his tithes, So that in the third year he gave all his tithes to the proselytes, and strangers. These and such like things did he observe when but a boy according to the law of God.

R. Omni témpore bénedic Deum, et pete ab eo ut vias tuas dirigat,* Et in omni témpore consília tua in ipso permaneant.
V. Inquire ut fácias quæ placita sunt illi in veritáte, et in tota virtúte tua.
R. Et in omni témpore consília tua in ipso permaneant.
R. In all seasons bless God, and ask of Him to order thy goings; * And in all seasons let thy counsels be steadfastly in Him.
V. Seek faithfully and with all thy strength to do such things as please Him.
R. And in all seasons let thy counsels be steadfastly in Him.

Reading 3: But when he was a man, he took to wife Anna of his own tribe, and had a son by her, whom he called after his own name, And from his infancy he taught him to fear God, and to abstain from all sin. And when by the captivity he with his wife and his son and all his tribe was come to the city of Ninive, (When all ate of the meats of the Gentiles) he kept his soul and never was defiled with their meats.

R. Memor esto, fili, quóniam páuperem vitam gérimus: * Habebis multa bona, si timúeris Deum.
V. In mente habeto eum, et cave nequándo prætermittas præcepta ejus.
R. Habebis multa bona, si timúeris Deum.
R. My son, remember that we have but a frail life. * If thou fear God thou shalt have great goods.
V. Be mindful of Him, and beware lest ever thou transgress His commandments.
R. If thou fear God thou shalt have great goods.


Reading 4: And because he was mindful of the Lord with all his heart, God gave him favour in the sight of Salmanasar the king. And he gave him leave to go whithersoever he would, with liberty to do whatever he had a mind.  He therefore went to all that were in captivity, and gave them wholesome admonitions.

R: Omnibus autem diebus vitæ tuæ in mente habeto Deum: * Et cave ne aliquando peccato consentias, et prætermittas præcepta Domini Dei nostri.
V: Ex substantia tua fac eleemosynam, et noli avertere faciem tuam ab ullo paupere
R: Et cave ne aliquando peccato consentias, et prætermittas præcepta Domini Dei nostri.
V: Gloria Patri
R: Et cave ne aliquando peccato consentias, et prætermittas præcepta Domini Dei nostri.
R: And all the days of thy life have God in thy mind: * And take heed thou never consent to sin, nor transgress the commandments of the Lord our God.
V: Give alms out of thy substance, and turn not away thy face from any poor person
R: And take heed thou never consent to sin, nor transgress the commandments of the Lord our God.
V: Glory be
R: And take heed thou never consent to sin, nor transgress the commandments of the Lord our God.

Nocturn II

Reading 5: Sermon of St Leo, Pope - Well do I know, dearly beloved, that many of you are fervent in your observance of all those practices which belong to the Christian Faith, so that ye have no need to be admonished by our exhortations. For what tradition hath laid down, and custom well established, is neither unknown to the learned nor neglected by the devout. But because it appertaineth to the priestly office to exercise the same general care over all the Church's children in all such matters as be profitable alike to the learned and to the simple (both of whom are equally dear to us), we do now exhort the both of you to celebrate, with lively faith, and all due discipline of soul and body, the Quarterly Fast, which the seventh month [that is, September] doth once again bring to us in its yearly round.

R. Sufficiebat nobis paupértas nostra, ut divítiæ computaréntur: numquam fuísset pecúnia ipsa, pro qua misísti fílium nostrum, * Baculum senectútis nostræ!
V. Heu me, fili mi, ut quid te misimus peregrinari, lumen oculórum nostrórum?
R. Baculum senectútis nostræ!
R. Our poverty was enough for us, that it might have been accounted riches. O that the money had never been, for which thou hast sent away our son, * The staff of our old age.
V. Alas, my son, wherefore have we sent thee wandering, even thee, the light of our eyes?
R. The staff of our old age.

Reading 6: The Ember Days of fasting are appointed to the four seasons, in order that their quarterly recurrence in the course of the year may teach us how unceasingly we need to be purified, and how, as long as we are tossed about by the changes and chances of this life, we need through fasting and alms-deeds to be cleansed from the stain of that sin which we have contracted by the frailty of our flesh and our concupiscence.

R. Benedícite Deum cæli et coram ómnibus vivéntibus confitémini ei, * Quia fecit vobíscum misericórdiam suam.
V. Ipsum benedícite et cantáte illi: et enarráte ómnia mirabília ejus.
R. Quia fecit vobíscum misericórdiam suam.
R. Bless the God of heaven, and confess Him before all living:* For He hath had mercy upon you.
V. Bless Him, and sing praises unto Him, and tell of all His marvellous works.
R. For He hath had mercy upon you.

Reading 7: Let us diminish a little, beloved, what we are accustomed to use for ourselves, in order that we have somewhat more to use for the relief of the poor and needy.The conscience of the generous can thus be made glad by the fruits of their own liberality. Whilst thou art giving happiness thou shalt receive joy. Thy love for thy neighbour is a unity with thy love for God; and he hath taught us that in the unity of this twofold charity is to be found the fulfillment of all the Law and the Prophets. Further, if anyone doubt that what is given to man is offered to God, we have the saying of our Lord and Saviour, when he spake of feeding and helping the poor: Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these, my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

R. Tempus est ut revértar ad eum qui misit me;
* Vos autem benedícite Deum, et enarráte ómnia mirabília ejus.
V. Confitémini ei coram ómnibus vivéntibus, quia fecit vobíscum misericórdiam suam.
R. Vos autem benedícite Deum, et enarráte ómnia mirabília ejus.
R. It is time for me to return unto Him That sent me; * But bless ye God, and tell of all His marvelous works.
V. Confess Him before all living, for He hath had mercy upon you.
R. But bless ye God, and tell of all His marvelous works

Reading 8: Wherefore, let us fast on Ember Wednesday and Friday; and on Ember Saturday let us also keep vigil at the shrine of blessed Peter the Apostle; by whose merits and prayers we believe that we shall be aided, so that we may please our merciful God in our fasting and prayer.


R: Bona est oratio cum jejunio, et eleemosyna *
Quoniam ipsa est quæ purgat peccata
V: Et facit invenire misericordiam et viam æternam.
R: Quoniam ipsa est quæ purgat peccata
V: Gloria patri
R: Quoniam ipsa est quæ purgat peccata
R: Prayer is good with fasting and alms * For they purgeth away sins
V: And maketh to find mercy and life everlasting.
R: For they purgeth away sins
V: Glory be...
R: For they purgeth away sins

Nocturn III (St Augustine)

Reading 9: That her son was called again to life was the joy of that widowed mother; that souls of men are every day called to life is the joy of our Mother the Church. He was dead in body they have been dead in mind. His death was outward, and was outwardly bewailed; their inward. Death hath been neither mourned for nor seen. But He hath sought for them, Who hath seen that they are dead, and He only hath seen that they are dead, Who hath been able to make them alive. If He had not come to raise the dead, the Apostle had not said: "Awake, thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light."

R. Tribulatiónes civitátum audívimus, quas passæ sunt, et defécimus: timor et hebetúdo mentis cécidit super nos et super liberos nostros: ipsi montes nolunt recipere fugam nostram:
* Dómine, miserére.
V. Peccávimus cum pátribus nostris, iniúste egimus, iniquitátem fécimus.
R. Dómine, miserére.
R. We have heard of the tribulation of those cities, which they have suffered, and we have fainted. Fear and confusion of mind are fallen upon us. Even the mountains will not give us a refuge. * Lord, have mercy.
V. We have sinned like our forefathers, we have done unjustly, and wrought iniquity.
R. Lord, have mercy.

Reading 10: We find written how the Lord raised from the dead three persons visibly, but thousands invisibly. But how many they may have been whom He raised visibly, who knoweth For all the things which He did are not written. John saith thus: "There are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written.". There were then, doubtless, many more raised to life, but it is not meaningless that three are recorded.

R: Audite filii mei, patrem vestrum: servite Domino in veritate, et inquirite ut faciatis quæ placita sunt illi: et filiis vestris mandate * Ut faciant justitias et eleemosynas,
V: Ut sint memores Dei, et benedicant eum in omni tempore in veritate, et in tota virtute sua.
R: Ut faciant justitias et eleemosynas
R: Hearken my children, to your father: serve the Lord in truth, and seek to do the things that please him: and command your children:* That they do justice and almsdeeds
V: That they be mindful of God, and bless him at all times in truth, and with all their power.
R: That they do justice and almsdeeds

Reading 11: For our Lord Jesus Christ hath willed that those things which He did carnally, we should understand also spiritually. He worked not miracles only for the sake of working wonders, but that His works might be at once wonderful to them that beheld, and true to them that understand them. Even as one that looketh upon a scroll right fairly written, and knoweth not how to read therein, praiseth the hand of the old scribe when he seeth the beauty of the points, but what it saith, what those points mean, he knoweth not, and praiseth by the eye, without understanding by the mind.

R. Benedícat te Dóminus in virtúte sua, qui per te ad níhilum redégit inimícos nostros:  * Ut non defíciat laus tua de ore hóminum.
V. Benedíctus Dóminus qui creávit cælum et terram; quia hódie nomen tuum ita magnificávit.
R. Ut non defíciat laus tua de ore hóminum.
V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
R. Ut non defíciat laus tua de ore hóminum.
R. The Lord bless thee by His power, Who hath brought our enemies to nought through thee.
* And may the praise of thee never fail from the mouth of men.
V. Blessed be the Lord, Who hath created the heaven and the earth, because that He hath so glorified thy name this day.
R. And may the praise of thee never fail from the mouth of men.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
R. And may the praise of thee never fail from the mouth of men.

Reading 12: And as, on the other hand, he that can not only gaze on it, as can all men, but also can read it, praiseth the penmanship, and catcheth the sense likewise, which the unlearned cannot do even so. There were some that saw the miracles which Christ did, and understood not what they meant, nor what they, as it were, hinted to such as did understand them, and these only marvelled to see them wrought. And other some there were which saw the works, and marvelled, and understood them, and profited by them. And it is as these last that we ought to be in the school of Christ.

R. Duo Seraphim clamabant alter ad alterum:
* Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dominus Deus Sabaoth: * Plena est omnis terra gloria ejus.
V. Tres sunt qui testimonium dant in caelo, Pater, Verbum, et Spiritus Sanctus: et hi tres unum sunt.
R. Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dominus Deus Sabaoth:
V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
R. Plena est omnis terra gloria ejus.
R. One Seraph cried unto another* Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God of hosts the whole earth is full of His glory.
V. There are Three That bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost and these Three are One.
R. Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God of hosts
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
R. The whole earth is full of His glory.


Gospel :St Luke 7: 11-16:

 Et factum est: deinceps ibat in civitatem quæ vocatur Naim: et ibant cum eo discipuli ejus et turba copiosa.  Cum autem appropinquaret portæ civitatis, ecce defunctus efferebatur filius unicus matris suæ: et hæc vidua erat: et turba civitatis multa cum illa. Quam cum vidisset Dominus, misericordia motus super eam, dixit illi: Noli flere.  Et accessit, et tetigit loculum. (Hi autem qui portabant, steterunt.) Et ait: Adolescens, tibi dico, surge.  Et resedit qui erat mortuus, et cœpit loqui. Et dedit illum matri suæ. Accepit autem omnes timor: et magnificabant Deum, dicentes: Quia propheta magnus surrexit in nobis: et quia Deus visitavit plebem suam.

And it came to pass afterwards, that he went into a city that is called Naim; and there went with him his disciples, and a great multitude. And when he came nigh to the gate of the city, behold a dead man was carried out, the only son of his mother; and she was a widow: and a great multitude of the city was with her.  Whom when the Lord had seen, being moved with mercy towards her, he said to her: Weep not.  And he came near and touched the bier. And they that carried it, stood still. And he said: Young man, I say to thee, arise.  And he that was dead, sat up, and began to speak. And he gave him to his mother.  And there came a fear on them all: and they glorified God, saying: A great prophet is risen up among us: and, God hath visited his people.

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Seven Sorrows of Mary, Class III (!5 September)

The one reading and responsory of the feast are set out below.

Reading: The Martyrdom of the Virgin is set before us, not only in the prophecy of Simeon, but also in the story itself of the Lord's Passion. The holy old man said of the Child Jesus: Behold, this Child is set for the fall and the rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; yea, said he unto Mary, a sword shall pierce through thine own soul also. Even so, O Blessed Mother! The sword did indeed pierce through thy soul! for nought could pierce the Body of thy Son, nor pierce thy soul likewise. Yea, and when this Jesus of thine had given up the ghost, and the bloody spear could torture Him no more, thy soul winced as it pierced His dead Side! His Own Soul might leave Him, but thine could not. The sword of sorrow pierced through thy soul, so that we may truly call thee more than martyr, in whom the love, that made thee suffer along with thy Son, wrung thy heart more bitterly than any pang of bodily pain could do. Did not that word of His indeed pierce through thy soul, sharper than any two-edged sword, even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, Woman, behold thy son!  O what a change to thee! Thou art given John for Jesus, the servant for his Lord, the disciple for his Master, the son of Zebedee for the Son of God, a mere man for Very God. O how keenly must the hearing of those words have pierced through thy most loving soul, when even our hearts, stony, iron, as they are, are wrung at the memory thereof only! Marvel not, my brethren, that Mary should be called a Martyr in spirit. He indeed may marvel who remembereth not what Paul saith, naming the greater sins of the Gentiles, that they were without natural affection. Far other were the bowels of Mary, and far other may those of her servants be!



R. In toto corde tuo gémitus Matris tuæ ne obliviscáris, * Ut perficiátur propitiátio et benedictio.
V. Ave, princeps generosa, Martyrúmque prima rosa, Virginúmque lílium.
R. Ut perficiátur propitiátio et benedictio.
V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
R. Ut perficiátur propitiátio et benedictio.
R. Forget not the sorrows of thy mother with thine whole heart, * That thine offering and thy blessing may be perfected.
V. Hail, O maid of Royal birth, Noblest martyr-rose of earth, lily of virginity.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
R. That thine offering and thy blessing may be perfected.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Book to buy - Liturgical readings





Liturgical Readings The Lessons of the Temporal Cycle and the Principal Feasts of the Sanctoral Cycle according to the Monastic Breviary, Grail Publications, St Meinrad, 1943 (various reprints; I am using one from 1954).

Liturgical readings, still available as a reprint, is one of those books I recommend thinking about buying if you are serious about Matins.

This book wasn't put out for liturgical use - although it has an imprimateur, it specifically says it was for study purposes - but it can readily be used in conjunction with the Office.


What it contains


The first section of the book contains the Patristic readings for the temporal cycle of the year.  For each Sunday and fixed feast, it lists out the (Scriptural) first Nocturn readings, then provides the second and third Nocturn (Patristic) readings.  Through Lent, it provides the weekday Patristic readings, Gospel and collect.

The second half of the book covers most of the first and second class feasts of the sanctoral cycle.

As a bonus, because it dates from before the culling of Octaves, you get a number of extra readings for some feasts (including local feasts of St Meinrad).

The readings are not headed reading 1, reading 2 etc, but the divides the paragraphs to follow the divisions of the Office.

What it doesn't include


The key things missing from a practical point of view are texts for newer feasts added to the calendar or upgraded.  Most of these, however, can be filled in from other sources such as Divinum Officium and the supplement put out by Clear Creek.

It doesn't include the readings for Class III feasts.

And the really unfortunate omission from a practical point of view is the responsories.


Pros and cons


The big advantage of this book as far as a source of translations goes is that it invariably includes readings (or parts thereof) omitted in the Roman Office and so not otherwise available from places like Divinum Officium.  It also follows the traditional cycle of Mass readings (unlike Monastic Breviary Matins, which occasionally diverges from the Catholic cycle).

The translations are generally very good in my view (superior to those on Divinum Officium) and the book is nicely laid out and easy to read (at least in the edition I have).

It is perfect for study use, but for some (new or upgraded) feasts you would need to cross-check to make sure the readings are still current, as there are occasional differences to the 1963 breviary. 

Exaltation of Holy Cross

The readings and responsories for the feast are set out below for study purposes.

Nocturn I: 

Reading 1: From the Book of Numbers - And when king Arad the Chanaanite, who dwelt towards the south, had heard this, to wit, that Israel was come by the way of the spies, he fought against them, and overcoming them carried off their spoils. But Israel binding himself by vow to the Lord, said: It thou wilt deliver this people into my hand, I will utterly destroy their cities.

R. Gloriosum diem sacra veneratur Ecclesia, dum triumphale reseratur lignum: * In quo Redemptor noster mortis vincula rumpens, callidum aspidem superavit.
V. In ligno pendens nostræ salutis semitam Verbum Patris invenit.
R. In quo Redemptor noster mortis vincula rumpens, callidum aspidem superavit. 
R. Lo the Church, with solemn gladness, hails the day for ever glorious, when the opening earth revealeth that dread tree of mystic triumph.* On whose boughs her dying Saviour shattered death and crushed the serpent.
V. He the Word of God eternal, on those stately branches hanging, hath for us a new way opened.
R. On whose boughs her dying Saviour shattered death and crushed the serpent.

Reading 2: And the Lord heard the prayers of Israel, and delivered up the Chanaanite, and they cut them off and destroyed their cities: and they called the name of that place Horma, that is to say, Anathema. And they marched from mount Hor, by the way that leadeth to the Red Sea, to compass the land of Edom.

R. Crux fidelis, inter omnes arbor una nobilis: nulla silva talem profert, fronde, flore, germine: * Dulce lignum, dulces clavos, dulce pondus sustinuit. 
V. Super omnia ligna cedrorum tu sola excelsior.
R. Dulce lignum, dulces clavos, dulce pondus sustinuit. 
R. Faithful Cross, above all other, one and only noble tree None in foliage, none in blossom, none in fruit thy peers may be * Sweetest wood and sweetest iron, Sweetest weight is hung on thee.
V. Thou art higher than all cedars.
R. Sweetest wood, and sweetest iron, Sweetest weight is hung on thee.

Reading 3: And the people began to be weary of their journey and labour: And speaking against God and Moses, they said: Why didst thou bring us out of Egypt, to die in the wilderness? There is no bread, nor have we any waters: our soul now loatheth this very light food. Wherefore the Lord sent among the people fiery serpents.

R. Hæc est arbor digníssima, in paradisi médio situata, * In qua salútis auctor propria morte mortem ómnium superávit.
V. Crux præcellénti decore fulgida, quam Heraclius imperátor concupiscénti animo recuperávit.
R. In qua salútis auctor propria morte mortem ómnium superávit.
R. This is that noble tree, planted in the midst of the garden * Whereon the Author of our salvation did by His Own death openly triumph over the death of all men.
V. Even the Cross, whereof the glory is so excellent, and which the Emperor Heraclius did so eagerly rescue.
R. Whereon the Author of our salvation did by His Own death openly triumph over the death of all men.

Reading 4: The serpents bit them and killed many of them. Upon which they came to Moses, and said: We have sinned, because we have spoken against the Lord and thee: pray that he may take away these serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people. And the Lord said to him: Make a brazen serpent, and set it up for a sign: whosoever being struck shall look on it, shall live. Moses therefore made a brazen serpent, and set it up for a sign: which when they that were bitten looked upon, they were healed.

R: O crux benedicta  * Quae sola fuisti digna portare Regem caelorum et Dominum!
V: O crux gloriosa et admirabilis o crux veneranda
R: Quae sola fuisti digna portare Regem caelorum et Dominum!
V: Gloria Patri
R: Quae sola fuisti digna portare Regem caelorum et Dominum!


Nocturn II

Reading 5: Chosroes of Persia, having, in the last days of the reign of the Emperor Phocas, overrun Egypt and Africa, in 614, took Jerusalem, where he slaughtered thousands of Christians and carried off to Persia the Cross of the Lord, which Helen had put upon Mount Calvary. Heraclius, the successor of Phocas, moved by the thought of the hardships and horrid outrages of war, sought for peace, but Chosroes, drunken with conquest, would not allow of it even upon unfair terms. Heraclius therefore, being set in this uttermost strait, earnestly sought help from God by constant fasting and prayer, and through His good inspiration gathered an army, joined battle with the enemy, and prevailed against three of Chosroes' chief captains, and three armies.

R. Nos autem gloriari oportet in Cruce Domini nostri Iesu Christi, in quo est salus, vita, et resurrectio nostra: * Per quem salvati et liberati sumus.
V. Tuam Crucem adoramus, Domine, et recolimus tuam gloriosam passionem.
R. Per quem salvati et liberati sumus. 
R. But us it behoveth to glory in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, in Whom is our salvation, life, and resurrection * Who hath saved us and redeemed us.
V. O Lord, we worship thy Cross, and make memorial of thy glorious passion.
R. Who hath saved us and redeemed us.

Reading 6: Chosroes was broken by these defeats, and when in his flight, in 628, he was about crossing the Tigris, he proclaimed his son Medarses partner in his kingdom. Chosroes' eldest son Siroes took this slight to heart, and formed a plot to murder his father and brother, which plot he brought to effect soon after they had come home. Then he got the kingdom from Heraclius upon certain terms, whereof the first was that he should give back the Cross of the Lord Christ.

R. Dum sacrum pignus cælitus revelatur, Christi fides roboratur: * Adsunt prodigia divina in virga Moysi primitus figurata.
V. Ad Crucis contactum resurgunt mortui, et Dei magnalia reserantur.
R. Adsunt prodigia divina in virga Moysi primitus figurata. 
R. The Relique true from heaven revealed, hath now the Gospel's figure sealed * As by the serpent Moses reared, so by the Cross the sick are healed.
V. When the dead touch the Cross they arise, and the wonderful works of God are made manifest.
R. As by the serpent Moses reared, so by the Cross the sick are healed.

Reading 7: The Cross therefore was received back after that it had been fourteen years in the power of the Persians, and (in 629) Heraclius came to Jerusalem and bore it with solemn pomp unto the Mount whereunto the Saviour had borne it.This event was marked by a famous miracle. Heraclius, who was adorned with gold and jewels, stayed perforce at the gateway which leadeth unto Mount Calvary, and the harder he strove to go forward, the harder he seemed to be held back, whereat both himself and all they that stood by were sore amazed.

R. Hoc signum Crucis erit in cælo, cum Dominus ad iudicandum venerit:* Tunc manifesta erunt abscondita cordis nostri.
V. Cum sederit Filius hominis in sede maiestatis suæ et cœperit iudicare sæculum per ignem.
R. Tunc manifesta erunt abscondita cordis nostri. 
R. This Sign of the Cross shall be in heaven, when the Lord cometh to judgment.* Then shall the secrets of our hearts be made manifest.
V. When the Son of Man shall sit in the throne of His glory, and shall begin to judge the world by fire.
R. Then shall the secrets of our hearts be made manifest.

Reading 8:Then spake Zacharias, Patriarch of Jerusalem, saying: See, O Emperor, that it be not that in carrying the Cross attired in the guise of a Conqueror thou showest too little of the poverty and lowliness of Jesus Christ. Then Heraclius cast away his princely raiment and took off his shoes from his feet, and in the garb of a countryman easily finished his journey, and set up the Cross once more in the same place upon Calvary whence the Persians had carried it away. That the Cross had been put by Heraclius in the same place wherein it had first been planted by the Saviour caused the yearly Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross to become the more famous thenceforward.

R: Per signum Crucis de inimicis nostris * Libera nos, Deus noster.
V: Salva nos, Christe Salvator, per virtutem crucis
R: Libera nos, Deus noster.
V: Gloria Patri...
R: Libera nos, Deus noster.


Nocturn III 

Reading 9: From the Holy Gospel according to John - At that time, Jesus said unto the multitudes of the Jews: Now is the judgment of this world, now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And so on.

Homily by Pope St. Leo the Great - Dearly beloved brethren, when we gaze upon Christ lifted up upon the Cross, the eyes of our mind see more than that which appeared before the wicked, unto whom it was said through Moses: And thy life shall hang in doubt before thee, and thou shalt fear day and night, and shalt have none assurance of thy life. They saw in the crucified Lord nothing but the work of their own wickedness, and they feared greatly, not with that faith which giveth earnest of life by justification, but with that whereby the evil conscience is tortured.

R. Dulce lignum, dulces clavos, dulce pondus sustinuit: * Quæ sola digna fuit portare pretium huius sæculi.
V. Hoc signum Crucis erit in cælo cum Dominus ad iudicandum venerit.
R. Quæ sola digna fuit portare pretium huius sæculi. 
R. Sweetest wood and sweetest iron, Sweetest weight is hung on thee * Thou alone wast counted worthy this world's ransom to uphold.
V. The sign of the Cross shall be in heaven when the Lord cometh to judgment.
R. Thou alone wast counted worthy this world's ransom to uphold.

Reading 10: But our understanding is enlightened by the Spirit of truth, and with pure and open hearts we see the glory of the Cross shining over heaven and earth, and discern by inward glance what the Lord meant when His Passion was nigh at hand, and He said Now is the judgment of this world, now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all things unto Me. How wonderful is the power of the Cross! O how unutterable is the glory of the Passion, wherein standeth the Lord's judgment - seat, and the judgment of this world, and the might of the Crucified! Lord! Thou hast drawn all things unto thee! Thou didst spread out thine Hands all the day unto an unbelieving and gainsaying people, but the world hath felt and owned thy Majesty! Lord!

R. Sicut Moyses exaltavit serpentem in deserto, ita exaltari oportet Filium hominis: * Ut omnis qui credit in ipsum, non pereat, sed habeat vitam æternam.
V. Non misit Deus Filium suum in mundum ut iudicet mundum, sed ut salvetur mundus per ipsum.
R. Ut omnis qui credit in ipsum, non pereat, sed habeat vitam æternam. 
R. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up * That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
V. God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
R. That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Reading 11: Thou hast drawn all things unto thee! All the elements gave one wild cry of horror at the iniquity of the Jews the lights of the firmament were darkened, day turned into night, earth quaked with strange tremblings, and all God's work refused to serve the guilty. Lord! Thou hast drawn all things unto thee! The veil of the Temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom, the Holy of Holies denied itself as a Sanctuary for the ministration of unworthy Priests, that the shadow might be changed for the substance, prophecy for realization, and the Law for the Gospel.

R: Tuam crucem adoramus Domine, tuam gloriosam recolimus passionem * Miserere nostri, qui passus es pro nobis.
V: Adoramus te, Christe, et benedicimus tibi, quia per sanctam crucem tuam redemisti mundum.
R: Miserere nostri, qui passus es pro nobis.


Reading 12: Lord! Thou hast drawn all things unto thee! That which was veiled under types and shadows in the one Jewish Temple, is hailed by the love of all peoples in full and open worship. There is now a higher order of Levites, a more honourable rank of elders, a Priesthood with an holier anointing. thy Cross is a well of blessings for all, and a cause of thanksgiving for all. Thereby for them that believe in thee, weakness is turned into strength, shame into glory, and death into life. The changing ordinance of divers carnal sacrifices is gone; the one oblation of thy Body and Blood fulfilleth them all. For Thou art the Very Paschal Lamb, Which takest away the sins of the world, and art in thyself all offerings finished. And even as Thou art the One Sacrifice Which taketh the place of all sacrifices, so may thy kingdom be one kingdom established over all peoples.

R: Ecce Crucem Domini, fugite partes adversae, vicit Leo de tribu Iuda, * Radix David, Alleluia
V: Crux benedicta, in qua triumphavit Rex Angelorum
R: Radix David, Alleluia
V: Gloria Patri
R: Radix David, Alleluia
R: Behold the Cross of the Lord, begone all evil powers, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, * The root of David has conquered! Alleluia.
V: O Blessed cross, on which the King of the Angels triumphed.
R: The root of David has conquered, Alleluia.
V: Glory be...
R: The root of David has conquered, Alleluia.

Gospel: St John 12: 31-36 - 

Sentence is now being passed on this world; now is the time when the prince of this world is to be cast out. Yes, if only I am lifted up from the earth, I will attract all men to myself.  (In saying this, he prophesied the death he was to die.The multitude answered him, We have been told, out of the law, that Christ is to remain undisturbed for ever; what dost thou mean by saying that the Son of Man must be lifted up? What Son of Man is this?  And Jesus said to them, The light is among you still, but only for a short time. Finish your journey while you still have the light, for fear darkness should overtake you; he who journeys in darkness cannot tell which way he is going.  While you still have the light, have faith in the light, that so you may become children of the light. So much Jesus told them, and then went away, and was lost to their view.