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Archive for the ‘Liturgy’ Category

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Deus est nobis refugium et virtus,
adiutorium in tribulationibus inventus est nimis.
Propterea non timebimus, dum turbabitur terra,
et transferentur montes in cor maris.
Fremant et intumescant aquae eius, conturbentur montes in elatione eius.
Fluminis rivi laetificant civitatem Dei,
sancta tabernacula Altissimi.
Deus in medio eius, non commovebitur;
adiuvabit eam Deus mane diluculo.
Fremuerunt gentes, commota sunt regna;
dedit vocem suam, liquefacta est terra.
Dominus virtutum nobiscum,
refugium nobis Deus Iacob.
Venite et videte opera Domini,
quae posuit prodigia super terram.
Auferet bella usque ad finem terrae,
arcum conteret et confringet arma
et scuta comburet igne.
Vacate et videte quoniam ego sum Deus:
exaltabor in gentibus et exaltabor in terra.
Dominus virtutum nobiscum,
refugium nobis Deus Iacob.

* * *

God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble with its tumult.
There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God will help her right early.
The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The LORD of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.
Come, behold the works of the LORD,
how he has wrought desolations in the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear,
he burns the chariots with fire!
“Be still, and know that I am God.
I am exalted among the nations,
I am exalted in the earth!”
The LORD of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.

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Today is the Feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, more commonly known as Corpus Christi, the day set aside by the Church in honor of the Eucharist. Traditionally, the celebration of Corpus Christi includes the Lauda Sion sequence, which I was fortunate enough to hear sung in Latin at Mass today. The words were written by St. Thomas Aquinas; what follows is an English rendition, compliments of Wikipedia.

Oh, and to actually hear the chant—compliments of Archive.org—simply follow this link. Gotta love the internet.

* * *

Sion, lift up thy voice and sing:
Praise thy Savior and thy King,
Praise with hymns thy shepherd true.

All thou canst, do thou endeavour:
Yet thy praise can equal never
Such as merits thy great King.

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Exultet

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Rejoice, heavenly powers! Sing, choirs of angels!
Exult, all creation around God’s throne!
Jesus Christ, our King, is risen!
Sound the trumpet of salvation!

Rejoice, O earth, in shining splendor,
radiant in the brightness of your King!
Christ has conquered! Glory fills you!
Darkness vanishes for ever!

Rejoice, O Mother Church! Exult in glory!
The risen Savior shines upon you!
Let this place resound with joy,
echoing the mighty song of all God’s people!

My dearest friends,
standing with me in this holy light,
join me in asking God for mercy,

that he may give his unworthy minister
grace to sing his Easter praises.

Deacon: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Deacon: Lift up your hearts.
People: We lift them up to the Lord.
Deacon: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
People: It is right to give him thanks and praise.

It is truly right
that with full hearts and minds and voices
we should praise the unseen God, the all-powerful Father,
and his only Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.

For Christ has ransomed us with his blood,
and paid for us the price of Adam’s sin to our eternal Father!

This is our passover feast,
when Christ, the true Lamb, is slain,
whose blood consecrates the homes of all believers.

This is the night
when first you saved our fathers:
you freed the people of Israel from their slavery
and led them dry-shod through the sea.

This is the night
when the pillar of fire destroyed the darkness of sin!

This is the night
when Christians everywhere,
washed clean of sin and freed from all defilement,
are restored to grace and grow together in holiness.

This is the night
when Jesus Christ broke the chains of death
and rose triumphant from the grave.

What good would life have been to us,
had Christ not come as our Redeemer?
Father, how wonderful your care for us!
How boundless your merciful love!
To ransom a slave you gave away your Son.

O happy fault,
O necessary sin of Adam,
which gained for us so great a Redeemer!

Most blessed of all nights,
chosen by God to see Christ rising from the dead!

Of this night scripture says:
“The night will be as clear as day:
it will become my light, my joy.”

The power of this holy night dispels all evil,
washes guilt away, restores lost innocence,
brings mourners joy;
it casts out hatred, brings us peace,
and humbles earthly pride.

Night truly blessed when heaven is wedded to earth
and man is reconciled with God!

Therefore, heavenly Father,
in the joy of this night,
receive our evening sacrifice of praise,
your Church’s solemn offering.

Accept this Easter candle,
a flame divided but undimmed,
a pillar of fire that glows to the honor of God.

(For it is fed by the melting wax,
which the mother bee brought forth
to make this precious candle.)

Let it mingle with the lights of heaven
and continue bravely burning
to dispel the darkness of this night!

May the Morning Star which never sets
find this flame still burning:
Christ, that Morning Star,
who came back from the dead,
and shed his peaceful light on all mankind,
your Son, who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

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While visiting a friend in Sacramento this past weekend, I had the distinct pleasure of being able to attend Sunday Mass at St. Stephen the First Martyr, a parish served by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter. The FSSP, for those of you who are unaware, is an order of priests who celebrate Mass according to the 1962 missal; it was founded in 1988 by several priests and seminarians who had left the Society of St. Pius X after its founder, Archbp. Marcel Lefebvre, illicitly ordained four bishops and was excommunicated. Thus, the Fraternity is in good standing with Rome, unlike the SSPX (though the latter’s schismatic status may be resolved in the near future; but that’s another story). In any event, I managed to make the 10:30 AM High Mass, and was I ever impressed.

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Shawn Tribe over at The New Liturgical Movement has posted a brief but excellent piece on the need for beauty in liturgical settings.  Here’s an excerpt:

Beauty is a problem only if it is distorted in such a way as to make it narcissistic; even then, the problem is not with beauty itself, which exists as a reflection of the Divine, but simply with our approach to it.

A proper approach (and it is important that we make this approach) would see us clothe the sacred mysteries in beauty so that we might render to God the fruits of our labours in a way befitting the dignity of the sacred realities which occur in each and every Mass — in short, making it of itself a part of the act of worship, surrounding that which is primary in this regard: the mystical re-offering of Calvary.

 Read the rest here.

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