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The Liturgical Year – Saturday in Ember Week

Prope est jam Dominus;
venite adoremus.
The Lord is now nigh:
come, let us adore.

The lessons from the prophet Isaias are interrupted to-day also; and a homily on the Gospel of the Mass is read in their place. As this Gospel is repeated to-morrow, in the Mass of the fourth Sunday of Advent, we will, for the present, omit it, and be satisfied with mentioning the reason of the same Gospel being assigned to the two days.

Ordinations in Rome
Ordinations in Rome

The primitive custom, in the Roman Church, was to hold ordinations in the night between Saturday and Sunday, just as Baptism was administered to the catechumens in the night between Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday. The ceremony took place to-wards midnight, and Sunday morning was always far advanced before the termination; so that the Mass of ordination was considered as the Mass of Sunday itself. Later on, discipline relaxed, and these severe vigils were given up; the ordination Mass, like that of Holy Saturday, was anticipated; and, as the fourth Sunday of Advent and the second of Lent had not hitherto had a proper Gospel, since they had not had a proper Mass, it was settled, about the tenth or eleventh century, that the Gospel of the Mass of ordinations should be repeated in the special Mass of the two Sundays in question.

The Station is at St. Peter's on account of the ordinations. This basilica was always one of the largest of the city of Rome, and was therefore the best suited for the great concourse of people.

Let us honour Mary upon this day of the week, which is consecrated to her; let us borrow a canticle from the oriental Church, ever profuse in its praise of the Mother of God.

(December 15)

Ut thronus purpuriformis
Creatorem fers; ut animatus
thalamus regem circumdas,
Deo gratissima.Virga virtutis germinasti
Christum in quo stabilimur;
te enim figurabat virga Aaron,
olim germinans inculta; casta
columba, semper Virgo.

Hymnificare modum
superadmirabilem, et omnem
sensum superantem
extraordinariae tuae graviditatis
nesciunt omnium hominum
catervae; omnem enim
mentem et cogitationem
praetergreditur, ac intelligentias,
omnium et verborum
Miraculum inenarrabile
conceptionis atque
immemorandum gestationis tuae
prodigium videns Isaias,
divina voce clamabat:
Spiritus sanctus supervenit in
te, Dei Mater! rubum te
servans ut olim
incombustum; et ideo cum
angelo clamamus: Gaude, Dei

As a royal throne, thou
carriest the Creator; as a
living couch, thou encirclest
the King, 0 creature most
dear to God:
Branch most vigorous,
thou didst bud forth the
Christ on whom we lean and
are supported; for Aaron's
branch, which, of old, budded
unplanted, was a type of
thee, thou chaste dove, and
ever a Virgin.
To sing the more than
wonderful manner of thy
extraordinary and
incomprehensible maternity,
is above the power of all
the choir of men: for no mind, no
thought, no understanding,
no words, can reach the
mystery.Isaias, seeing the unspeakable
miracle, the ineffable
miracle of thy maternity,
spoke thus divinely: The
holy Spirit hath come upon
thee, 0 Mother of God!
preserving thee, as heretofore
he kept entire the burning
bush: and, therefore, we cry
out with the angel: Rejoice,
0 thou tabernacle of God!

(Fifth Sunday of Advent, Illatio)

Dignum et justum est nos
tibi gratias agere, Domine
sancte, Pater aeterne,
omnipotens Deus, per Jesum
Christum Filium tuum
Dominum nostrum. Ejus
incarnatio salus facta est
mundi, at passio exstitit
redemptio hominis procreati.
Ipse igitur nos, omnipotens
Pater, quaesumus, perducat
ad praemium, qui redemit
de tenebris infernorum. Ipse
carnem nostram a delictis
emaculet, qui eam suscepit
ex Virgine. Ipse nos laesos
tuas restituat majestati, qui
nos tibi per sanguinem suum
reconciliavit. Ipse nos
secundi adventus
examinatione justificet, qui in
primo contulit donum gratias suae.
Ipse ad judicandum veniat
mitis, qui olim apparuit
humilis. Ipse in judicium
ostendatur nobis mitissimus,
qui dudum venit occultus.
It is meet and just that we
give thee thanks, 0 holy
Lord, eternal Father,
almighty God, through Jesus
Christ thy Son our Lord.
His Incarnation was the
salvation of the world, and his
Passion the redemption of
his creature man. Therefore
we beseech thee, 0 almighty
Father, may he lead us to
heaven, who purchased us
from dark hell. May he
cleanse our flesh from its
sins, who took to himself
that flesh from the Virgin.
May he again bring us
from our treason to fidelity,
who reconciled us to thee
by his Blood. May he make
and find us just in the
judgement of his second coming,
who conferred upon us the
gift of his grace in the first.
May he come to judge us
in meekness, who heretofore
came in humility to dwell
with us. May he show
himself in gentlest meekness
when he judges us, who
heretofore hid himself in
deepest humility when he
redeemed us.

One comment

  1. Please let me know when the The Parish Book of Chant is available. Thank you.

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