26 September 2015

Eighteenth Sunday After Pentecost 1863

27 SUNDAY Seventeenth after Pentecost, semidouble. Green. Vespers of the Sunday, commemoration of St Wenceslaus. Suffrages.

28 Monday. St Wenceslaus, Martyr, semidouble. Second prayers A Cunctis. Third prayers at the choice of the priest. Red.

29 Tuesday. (Feastday of Devotion) St MICHAEL, Archangel, double of the second class. CreedWhite. [In Dioceses of Westminster, Birmingham, and Hexham and Newcastle, second prayers for the Bishop. In Diocese of Liverpool, plenary indulgence. In Diocese of St David's and Newport, Titular of the Pro-Cathedral, double of the First Class with Octave, during which commemoration of the Octave and Creed.]

30 Wednesday.  St Jerome, Confessor Doctor, double. Creed. White.

Thursday. St Remigius, Bishop Confessor, semidouble.  Second prayers A Cunctis. Third prayers at the choice of the priest. White.

2 Friday.  The Guardian Angels, double. CreedWhite. Abstinence.

Saturday. St Thomas of Hereford, Bishop Confessor, double. White. [In dioceses of Clifton, St David's and Newport, and Plymouth, principal Mass of the BVM, with Gloria, one Prayer, and Creed. White.]

That's the Green vestments put away until next year, when six of the Sundays after Pentecost will be green: wrap them well. If we were Victorians we would probably miss them: we're not; we won't.

It is Michaelmas on Tuesday, and only a Feast of Devotion instead of the Holyday it once was.  (It is ironic that its status as Quarter Day, like the status of Lady Day, St John's Eve and Christmas Day, survived even Cromwell's reformation: money matters.) If you aren't praying a Novena to St Michael, please pray to him on his feast day to guard the Church during the forthcoming Synod.

Saturday's rubric concerning the feast of St Thomas Cantilupe is odd, in that at this time the Benedictine Monastery at Belmont in Herefordshire was the Pro-Cathedral for the Diocese of St David's and Newport, yet did not make anything of the local saint. Once the Diocese of Newport (more or less today's Archdiocese of Cardiff) had been split away from the rest of South Wales, St Thomas's feast was raised in status in that diocese, but it is odd, to me at least, that the Church in England and Wales would not want to make more of an English saint whose canonisation in 1320 (he had only died in 1282) made him one of the few English saints of the modern era.

The parish of St Thomas of Hereford, at Weobley in Herefordshire is served by the Rev C B Quinn.  Mas is said on Sundays at 10.30, and on Holydays at 10.00. There is an afternoon service sat 3,00 pm.

St Thomas's shrine in Hereford Cathedral has been restored, or at least repainted in the sort of polychromatic colours experts believe is an accurate rendering of how mediaeval stone would have been painted.  It offers the tiniest of glimpses into a past which is a foreign country.  There is, of course, no chantry; no altar; no Mass; no place to hang ex votos; no place to light candles; no pilgrims' hostel; indeed, no pilgrims. 

One of the small but important miracles in the depressing years after the failure of the Counter-Reformation in England is that those who kept the Faith managed in the main, not to turn to despair, but instead to resign themselves to the will of God.

19 September 2015

Seventeenth Sunday After Pentecost 1863

20 SUNDAY Seventeenth after Pentecost. The Seven Sorrows of the BVM, greater double. Second prayers and Last Gospel of the Sunday. Preface of the BVM. White. First Vespers of St Matthew, commemoration only of the Seven Sorrows. Red.  Plenary Indulgence.

21 Monday. (Feast of Devotion) St MATTHEW Apostle and Evangelist, double of the second class. Creed. Preface of the Apostles. Red. [In Diocese of Nottingham second prayers for the Bishop.]

22 Tuesday. St Thomas of Villanova, Bishop Confessor, double. Second prayers of St Maurice and Companions, Martyrs. White.

23 Wednesday.  St Linus, Pope Martyr, semidouble. Second prayers of St Thecla, Virgin Martyr. Third prayers A Cunctis. Red.

24 Thursday. Our Lady of Mercy, greater double. Creed. Preface of the BVM. White.

25 Friday.  Sts Eustace and Companions, Martyrs, double (transferred from 20 September). Red. Abstinence.  [In Diocese of Liverpool second prayers for the Bishop.]

26 Saturday. Of the Immaculate Conception, semidouble. Second prayers of Sts Cyprian and Justina, Martyrs. Third prayers Deus qui corda. White.

I regularly list parishes which include "Instruction" as one of their Sunday services  This is when the clergy fulfilled their duty to educate their parishioners on what the Church taught.  (The bizarre, late twentieth century, idea that the Mass itself was for instruction would have been laughed out of court.) Imagine what the priest will teach about this week's feasts: there are three of Our Lady: her seven sorrows, her mercy, and her immaculate conception.  (We haven't heard much about Our Lady of Mercy as we await the Synod, have we?  Can anybody guess why?)  We have St Linus, a Pope Martyr who is mentioned in the Creed and who, we can (fairly safely) believe is buried close to St Peter beneath the high altar of St Peter's Basilica. We have St Eustace, one of the fourteen Holy Helpers, scandalously removed from the calendar in 1970 simply because the inadequates working for Bugnini couldn't "prove" that he wasn't mythological (hold me down).  And we have a Spanish Bishop whose care for the Moors in Spain and the Indians in Mexico was such that he was excused attendance at the Council of Trent, as his works of mercy were too important to be allowed to lapse. And we have St Matthew, the miserable sinner whose conversion led to his becoming an Apostle and, literate man that he was among the Galilean fishermen, an Evangelist as well.

During my primary education in the 1960s, we knew what each feast day in the week represented, as well as what the readings for the Sunday were going to be.  This probably represented the best part of an hour in school each day.  We were instructed.

St Vincent of Paul in Liverpool is served by the Very Rev Canon Bernard O'Reily, assisted by the Revs Michael Donelly and Francis Bartley.  Sunday Masses are at 7.30, 8.30 and 9.45, with High Mass and Sermon at 11.00.  Catechism and Instruction are at 2.00, and Benediction for children is at 3.00. Baptisms 3.30 pm (and on weekdays at 8.30am). Rosary, Sermon and Benediction at 6.30. On Holydays Mass at 5.00, 7.30, and 8.30. High Mass at 10.00 Devotions and Benediction at 7.30. On weekdays, Masses at 7.00, 8.00 and 9.00. On Thursday evenings, Benediction at 7.30pm. On Friday evenings Stations of the Cross at 7.30pm.

What an edifying service Benediction for children must have been when their Anglican neighbours were being sent to Sunday School!

The influence of the Catholic families who had managed to hold on to land and other property, and to whom the Church in England and Wales owed its continued existence from 1650 to the time of Emancipation in 1829 waned rapidly.  There is still a Lord Stourton, the 27th Baron, though his subsidiary titles have moved about a bit.  The 18th Baron was a son of Stourton and Weld, and married to a Clifford. These families had maintained their Faith by marrying each other and hoping and trusting that theirs would not be the last Catholic generation. 

18 September 2015

Martyrologium For 19 September

Pray to the martyrs, that they might pray for us.

At Puzzuoli, in Campania, the holy martyrs Januarius, Bishop of Benevento, Festus his Deacon, and Desiderius his Reader, Sosius, a Deacon of the Church of Miseno, Proculus, a Deacon of Puzzuoli, (and two laymen named respectively) Eutyches and Acutius, who were chained and imprisoned, and at length beheaded, under the Emperor Diocletian. The body of the holy Januarius was carried to Naples, and honourably buried in the church there, where also is still kept in a glass phial some of the blood of this most blessed martyr, which is seen to melt and bubble, as though it were fresh, when it is put in sight of his head. 

At Nocera, the holy martyrs Felix and Constance, who suffered under Nero. 

In Palestine, the holy martyrs Peleus, Nilus, and Elias, Bishops of Egypt, who, in the time of the persecution under the Emperor Diocletian, were, along with many other clerks, consumed with fire for Christ's sake. 

On the same day, under the Emperor Probus, the holy martyrs Trophimus, Sabbatius, and Dorymedon. 

Sabbatius was flogged to death at Antioch, by command of Atticus the President; Trophimus was sent to Synnada to the President Perennius, and there, after being put to many torments, he was beheaded along with the Senator Dorymedon. 

At Cordova, in the persecution under the Arabs, (in the ninth century,) the holy Virgin and martyr Pomposa. 

At Canterbury, holy Theodore, Archbishop of that city, who was sent into England by Pope Vitalian, and was a burning and a shining light for teaching and holiness. (We keep his feast upon the 26th day of this present month of September.) At Tours, (in the fifth century,) the holy Confessor Eustochius, Bishop (of that see), a man of many graces. 

In the country of Langres, (in the sixth century,) the holy Priest and Confessor Sequanus. 

At Barcelona, in Spain, the blessed Virgin Mary de Cervelhon, of the Order of St Mary of Ransom, who, because of her ready help to them that call upon her, is commonly called Helpful Mary

12 September 2015

Sixteenth Sunday After Pentecost 1863

13 SUNDAY Sixteenth after Pentecost. The Most Holy Name of MARY, greater double. Second prayers and Last Gospel of the Sunday. White. First Vespers of The Exaltation of the Holy Cross, commemorations of the Most Holy Name of Mary and of the Sunday only. Red.  Plenary Indulgence.

14 Monday. The Exaltation of the Holy Cross, greater double. Preface of the Cross. Red.

15 Tuesday. Octave of the Nativity of the BVM, double. Second prayers of St Nicomedes, Martyr. White.

16 Ember-Wednesday.  Sts Cornelius, Priest, and Cyprian, Bishop, Martyrs, semidouble. Second prayers and Last Gospel of the Ember-day. Third prayers of Sts Euphemia and Companions, Martyrs. Red. FAST. [In Diocese of Plymouth fourth prayers for the Bishop.]

17 Thursday. Stigmata of St Francis, double. White.

18 Ember-Friday.  St Joseph of Copertino, Confessor, double. Second prayers and Last Gospel of the Ember-day. White. FAST.

19 Ember-Saturday. Vigil of the Feast of St Matthew. Sts Januarius and Companions, Martyrs. Second prayers and Last Gospel of the Ember-day. Third prayers of the Vigil. Red.

With one exception, every Sunday from now until the end of October is a feast of Our Lady: only the last Sunday in September isn't one.  On one of them the Marian feast will be overtaken by a higher-ranking feast of an Evangelist, but devotion to Our Lady is much more liturgically marked in the pre-Pius X calendar than it would be subsequently for those who attended Mass only on Sundays and Holydays. This is one of those subtle changes of emphasis whose results take a long time to trickle through, but Mary's place in Catholic worship, and hence in Catholic belief, is no longer what it was.  When was the last time you saw somebody saying the Rosary in Church before or during Mass?

Another change, that of the dating of the Ember days, is attributable to John XXIII, or at least was done on his watch.  The best explanation I have found is here, but as so often, I am left asking "Why?" This mania for rationalisation and simplification and conformity to the "modern" way of doing things should be antithetical, at least to the instinct of any Catholic. 

The parish of St Charles Borromeo on Jarratt-street in Hull, is served by the Missionary Rector, the Rev Michael Trappes, supported by the Revs John Motler and Arthur G Riddell.  Masses on Sunday are at 8.00, 9.30 (for children), and High Mass with a sermon is at 11.00. Catechism and Benediction for children is at 3.00 pm, and Vespers, with a Lecture and Benediction is at 6.30. On Holydays, Mass is at 8.30 and 10.30.  On weekdays, Mass is at 7.00 and 8.00 in the summer, and 7.30 and 8.30 in the winter. Instruction and Benediction on Holydays and Thursday evenings at 7.45. On Tuesday at 7.15 pm there is a short service for the Guild of the Blessed Sacrament. 

Here are some more places where confessions can be heard in English.  Not all the priests are known by name, but the importance of being able to access sacramental confession is one of the most important things a Catholic Directory can acknowledge.

05 September 2015

Fifteenth Sunday After Pentecost 1863

6 SUNDAY Fifteenth after Pentecost, semidouble. Second prayers A Cunctis. Third prayers at the choice of the priest. Green. Vespers of the Sunday, Suffrages. [In Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle Plenary Indulgence. At Nottingham, The Octave of the Dedication of the Cathedral, double. White. Second Vespers of the Dedication, with Commemoration of the Sunday.]

Monday. Feria. Second prayers Fidelium (for the Dead). Third prayers A Cunctis. Green

8 Tuesday. (Feast of Devotion) THE NATIVITY OF THE BVM, double of the second class with an Octave, during which commemoration of the Octave, Creed, and Preface of the BVM. Second prayers of St Aidan, Martyr. White. Plenary Indulgence

Wednesday.  Of the Octave. Second prayers of St Gorgonius, Martyr. Third prayers Deus qui cordaWhite.

10 Thursday. St Nicholas of Tolentino, Confessor, double. White.

11 Friday.  Of the Octave. Second prayers of Sts Protus and Hyacinth, Martyrs. Third prayers Deus qui cordaWhite.

12 Saturday. Of the Octave. Second prayers Deus qui corda. Third prayers for the Church or the Pope. White.

A very quiet week, this.  Our Lady's Birthday is celebrated almost as a Holyday but not quite, but its Octave (a proper Octave, not the simple one it ended up as) will remind all of us - would have reminded us - of its importance. It being a feast of the BVM, there is a Plenary Indulgence available for all.  A difference between this week, though, and what happened before VII, is the effect of the Octave in maintaining a festal tone during the week.  In the 1962 calendar, Wednesday and Friday will be dreary Green, with Saturday saved only because it has become the feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary, transferred from the Sunday in the Octave of the Nativity of the BVM.  I don't think my considered opinions about the calendar reforms of the twentieth century are going to come as a surprise to anyone.  By contrast, in 1863, Sunday and Monday's Green marks an incredibly rare opportunity to leave the little-used green vestments out instead of putting them away. 

Is anyone up for a comparative 1863 vs 2015 (1962 Calendar) chart of vestment colours?

I've mentioned the Suffrages at Vespers before.  I still like the fact that in the north St Cuthbert takes precedence over St George.

Holy Cross Priory on Wellington-street, Leicester is served by the Dominicans. The Very Rev Fr W T Nickolds is the Provincial, and the Rev Frs F Aloysius Dixon and Edmund Buckler OP also serve the parish.  Mass on Sunday is at 9.00 and 11.00. Rosary and Catechism at 3.00. Vespers Sermon and Benediction at 6.30. On Holydays Mass is at 7.00 and 9.00. Evening Devotions and Benediction at 8.00.  On other days, Mass is at 7.00 and 8.30. Evening Devotions at 8.00.

One of the reasons we can have this series is that Fr Moore, or his successors, were careful about keeping their copies of the Catholic Directory.  Please say a quick Eternal Rest for him.