This blog contains regular postings relating to the Traditional Latin Liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church. It includes regular commentary on the saints days and the liturgical cycle, with brief background and extracts from the liturgy both in Latin and English. Much of the material has been extracted from the 'St Andrew's Daily Missal', Dom Gueranger's 'Liturgical Year', or similar sources.

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Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Act of Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Act of Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Composed by Pope Pius XII in 1942 for his consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, Help of Christians, Refuge of the human race, conqueror in all God’s battles, we humbly prostrate ourselves before thy throne. We are confident of obtaining mercy, grace, and help in the present calamities, not for our own merits to which we make no claim but only because of the great goodness of thy Maternal Heart. In this tragic hour of human history we confide, entrust, and consecrate to thy Immaculate Heart the Holy Church, Mystical Body of thy son, Jesus, which bleeds now from so many wounds and is so sorely tried.

We consecrate likewise to thy Immaculate Heart the whole world torn as it is by deadly strife, afire with hatred and paying the penalty of its own wickedness. Be moved to pity by the sight of so much destruction and ruin of souls, by the grief and agony of fathers and mothers, husbands and wives, brothers, sisters, and innocent children. Look with compassion on the lives cut off in the flower of youth, on the bodies mangled in horrible slaughter, on the many torn with anguish, and on all those in danger of being lost forever.

Mother of Mercy, obtain for us peace from God and the grace that is able in an instant to change the heart of man, the grace that brings and fosters peace, and makes it lasting. Queen of Peace, pray for us and give to the warring world that peace for which the nations long, a peace in the truth, in the righteousness, and in the love of Jesus Christ. Turn their weapons aside and let peace possess their souls so that God’s kingdom may be set up in quiet order. Stretch out a helping hand to the unbeliever and to all who live in the shadow of death. Give them peace and grant that enlightened by the truth they may repeat with us before the one Saviour of the world, ‘Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to men of good will.’

Give peace also to the peoples separated from us by error or strife and in particular to those who have professed a special devotion to thee and in whose homes thine icon was always an object of veneration. It is hidden away now maybe to await the dawn of better days. Bring them back to the one fold of Christ under the one true shepherd. Grant perfect peace and freedom to the holy Church of God. Stem the flood of modern paganism. Let the love of purity increase among the children of God. Make us live as true followers of Christ, as zealous apostles, so that God’s servants may grow in merit and increase in number.

And as the whole human race was consecrated to the heart of thy Jesus that through hope in Him He might become for all the sign and pledge of victory and salvation, so we in like manner consecrate ourselves forever to thee and to thy Immaculate Heart, O Mother and Queen of the world. This we do so that thy love and protection may hasten the triumph of God’s kingdom. Thus may all nations at peace with one another and with God proclaim thee blessed, and sing with thee from pole to pole the unending Magnificat of glory, love, and thanksgiving to the Heart of Jesus in which alone they can find truth, life, and peace. Amen.

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

5th October, St Placid and his companions, Martyrs

St Placid and his companions, Martyrs

The holiness of St. Benedict in his grotto at Subiaco soon drew around him many disciples, among whom the two greatest were St. Maurus, apostle of the Benedictine Order in France and St. Placid. Both were committed to the care of the holy Patriarch, the former at twelve years of age and the latter when a child of four years old, by their parents who belonged to the most illustrious patrician families of Rome; under the guidance of such a master, they made rapid progress in holiness.

St. Benedict had a special predilection for young Placid, and just as the Saviour chose certain of His disciples to be witness of His miracles, so he liked to be accompanied by the pious child when God gave him miracles to work. On one occasion while drawing water from the lake of Subiaco, Placid fell in, and the waves carried him far from the shore. The man of God sent Maurus who, walking miraculously on the waters, saved him.

Placid and Maurus followed St. Benedict to Monte Cassino.

To-day's Office and Mass celebrate the memory of several Christians who were put to death in Sicily about 541 by Saracenic pirates. According to tradition, these martyrs were St. Placid, his sister, and the monks which St. Benedict had sent to Sicily with him.

Salus autem justorum a Domino: et protector eorum est in tempore tribulationis. * Noli aemulari in malignantibus: neque zelaveris facientes iniquitatem.
But the salvation of the just if from the Lord: and He is their protector in the time of trouble. * Be not emulous of evildoers; nor envy them that work iniquity.
(Psalm 36:39,1 from the Introit of Mass)

Deus, qui nos concedis sanctorum Martyrum tuorum Placidi et sociorum ejus natalitia colere: da nobis in aeterna beatitudine de eorum societate gaudere.
O God, who grantest us to celebrate the heavenly birthdays of Thy holy martyrs Placid and his companions, vouchsafe that we may enjoy their fellowship in everlasting bliss.

From the Catholic Encyclopaedia:

Monday, 3 October 2016

3rd October, St Therese of Lisieux, Virgin and Doctor

St Therese of The Child Jesus, Virgin and Doctor

Mary-Frances-Teresa Martin was born at Alencon (France) on January 2, 1873. She was brought up in a most Christian family, and educated by the Benedictine nuns at Lisieux. Whilst still a child she felt drawn towards the cloister, and at the age of fifteen, after much petition, was allowed to enter the Carmelite convent in that town. At the age of twenty-four she slept sweetly in the peace of the Lord. The life of this young saint of Carmel is not distinguished by any heroic or very great deed. She simply served God with a constant and assiduous fidelity in little things. To her the words of our Lord are applied by the Church: "Unless you become as little children you shall not enter the Kingdom of heaven."

"I do not intend to remain inactive in heaven," this saint said on her death-bed, "I wish to go on working for the Church and for souls." "After my death I will let fall a shower of roses." "It is our Lord who is calling me to heaven and the hope of being able to love Him as I have so much desired to do, and the thought that I shall be able to make him loved by a number of souls who will praise him eternally." Apostolic virgin! such is the title which seems best to characterize St. Teresa of the Child Jesus. Like her seraphic patron and mother she desired to make the salvation of souls the object of her life in the cloister, and thus her whole life was a "sacrifice of love, a holocaust to merciful love". When she left Carmel for heaven she repeated her intention of continuing to be an apostle in eternity as she had been here on earth. "I feel that my mission is soon to begin," she said, "my mission to make others love the good God as I love Him ... to teach my little way to souls. I wish to spend my heaven in doing good upon earth. Nor is this impossible, since from the very heart of the beatific vision the angels keep watch over us. No, there can be no rest for me until the end of the world. But when the angel shall have said: "Time is no more!" then I shall rest, then I shall be able to rejoice, because the number of the elect will be complete". (Autobiography).

The humble "Little Flower" was beatified by Pius XI in 1923, twenty-six years after her death, canonized in 1925, and in 1927, proclaimed patroness of all Catholic Missions.

Let us offer the Holy Sacrifice in thanksgiving for all the graces bestowed on this saint, and let us receive our Lord in Holy Communion in order to partake, through Him, in the virtues which adorned her life.

Veni de Libano, sponsa mea, veni de Libano, veni: vulnerasti cor meum, soror mea sponsa, vulnerasti cor meum. * Laudate, pueri, Dominum: laudate nomen Domini.
Come from Libanus, my spouse, come from Libanus, come; thou hast wounded my heart, my sister, my spouse, thou hast wounded my heart. * Praise the Lord, ye children: praise ye the name of the Lord.
(Canticle 4:8-9 and Psalm 112:1 from the introit of Mass)

Domine, qui dixisti: Nisi efficiamini sicut parvuli, non intrabitis in regnum caelorum: da nobis, quaesumus; ita beatae Theresiae Virginis in humilitate et simplicitate cordis vestigia sectari, ut praemia consequamur aeterna. 
O Lord, who hast said: Unless ye become as little children ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven: grant us, we beseech Thee, so to follow in humility and simplicity of heart, the footsteps of the blessed virgin St. Teresa, that we may obtain everlasting rewards.

From the Catholic Encyclopaedia:

Sunday, 2 October 2016

2nd October, The Holy Guardian Angels

The Holy Guardian Angels

This feast, solemnized by the Spaniards in the sixteenth century, was extended to the whole Church by Paul V in 1608. Clement X. (A.D. 1670) appointed it to be kept on the first free day after the feast of St. Michael, namely October 2. The angels already in glory have for their mission to adore the Divinity (Introit, Offertory, Communion). Wherefore in the Preface, the Church makes us ask God to permit our voices to join with theirs in praising God. "I have seen the Seraphim," says Isaias, "they stood near the sublime throne, where Jehovah was seated: their faces veiled they cried out to one another: Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God of Hosts, the whole earth is full of His glory." (Isaias 6:1-3)

But, as their name indicates the angels are also messengers of divine commands (Offertory). The holy Fathers teach that they preside over all created things, and St. Paul declares "that their mission is to serve the future heirs of salvation". (Hebrews 1:14.) This is why they are called guardian angels (Collect). It is generally thought that kingdoms, provinces, families, dioceses, churches, religious communities each have their protecting angel. In some countries they celebrate the feast of the angel of the nation. St. Francis of Hales says that the bishop as such has another guardian angel. Ezechiel says that the angel of the Temple of Jerusalem had a writing case hanging from his girdle (Ezech. 11). The angels of the churches, adds St. Basil, write down our irreverences.

That there is one for each just man, there can be no doubt, and the Church applies to the souls that are under the new Law what is written about the people under the Old Law. "I shall send My angel to march before you, to guard you on the way and to bring you into the land which I have prepared for you" (Epistle). Our guardian angel has for his mission to protect us and defend us in order that under his protection, safe from the snares of the enemies of our souls and from all adversities, we may reach the promised land of eternal life (Collect, Secret, Postcommunion). This faithful companion deserves our gratitude and the veneration due to one who already enjoys the beatific vision (Gospel). It is to encourage us to the habitual practice of this devotion that the Church instituted the feast of the Guardian Angels.

Benedicite Dominum, omnes Angeli ejus: potentes virtute, qui facitis verbum ejus, ad audiendam vocem sermonum ejus. * Benedic, anima mea, Domino: et omnia, quae intra me sunt, nomini sancto ejus.
Bless the Lord all ye His angels: you that are mighty in strength, and execute His word, hearkening to the voice of all His orders. * Bless the Lord, O my soul; and let all that is within me praise His holy name.
(Psalm 102:20,1 from the Introit of Mass)

Deus, qui ineffabili providentia sanctos Angelos tuos ad nostram custodiam mittere dignaris: largire supplicibus tuis; et eorum semper protectione defendi et aeterna societate gaudere.
O God, who in Thine ineffable providence, hast sent Thy holy angels to watch over us: grant, we humbly pray, that we may always be defended by their protection and may rejoice in their fellowship for evermore.

From the Catholic Encyclopaedia:

Friday, 30 September 2016

30th September, St Jerome, Priest and Doctor

St Jerome, Priest and Doctor

Jerome was born at Stridon, in Dalmatia, and was baptized in Rome. He was educated at a school held by very distinguished professors. Ordained priest, he retired into a monastery founded by two great Roman ladies, St. Paula and St. Eustochium, at Bethlehem, near the crib in which our Lord was born. Mortifying himself by perpetual abstinence, and devoting himself to meditation of the Scriptures (Gradual), he spent days and nights in study and writing. It is he who fixed the Latin text in the translation known as the Vulgate which the Church adopted as the official translation of the Bible. He died in A.D. 420 and his body rests in Rome in the church of St. Mary Major.

In medio Ecclesiae aperuit os ejus: et implevit eum Dominus spiritu sapientiae et intellectus: stolam gloriae induit eum. * Bonum est confiteri Domino: et psallere nomini tuo, Altissime.
In the midst of the Church the Lord opened his mouth: and He filled him with the spirit of wisdom and understanding: He clothed him with a robe of glory. * It is good to give praise to the Lord: and to sing to Thy name, O most High.
(Ecclesiasticus 15:5 and Psalm 91:2 from the Introit of Mass)

Deus, qui Ecclesiae tuae in exponendis sacris Scripturis beatum Hieronymum Confessorem tuum, Doctorem maximum providere dignatus es: praesta, quaesumus; ut, ejus suffragantibus meritis, quod ore simul et opere docuit, te adjuvante exercere valeamus.
O God, who for the expounding of Holy Scripture, didst raise up in Thy Church the great and holy doctor Jerome; grant, we beseech Thee, that, through his intercession and merits, we may put in practice what both by word and by work he has taught us.

From the Catholic Encyclopaedia:

Thursday, 29 September 2016

The Chaplet of St. Michael the Archangel

The history of this Chaplet goes back to a devout Servant of God Antonia d'Astonac, a holy Carmelite nun, of the convent of Vetralla in the diocese of Viterbo, who had a vision of St. Michael. The Archangel Michael revealed to her that he would be well pleased by his bringing into use the following prayers in his honour and in honour of all the angelic host; and that he would repay those who practised this devotion with signal favours, particularly in such times as the Catholic Church should experience some special trial.

He told Antonia to honour him by nine salutations to the nine Choirs of Angels. St. Michael promised that whoever would practise this devotion in his honour would have, when approaching Holy Commmunion, an escort of nine angels chosen from each of the nine Choirs. In addition, for those who would recite the Chaplet daily, he promised his continual assistance and that of all the holy angels during life.

This private revelation and prayers were approved by Pope Pius IX by a decree of the S. Congr. of Rites, dated August 8, 1851.


Let every one, according to his ability, begin with an act of sincere contrition, kneeling before a representation of the holy Archangel; then let him say with devotion the following salutations:

V. O God, come to my assistance.
R. O Lord, make haste to help me.
Glory be to the Father, etc.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the heavenly choir of the Seraphim, may it please God to make us worthy to receive into our hearts the fire of His perfect charity. Amen.

One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the First Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the heavenly choir of the Cherubim, may God grant us grace to abandon the ways of sin, and run the race of Christian perfection. Amen.
One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Second Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the sacred choir of the Thrones, may it please God to infuse into our hearts a true and earnest spirit of humility. Amen.

One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Third Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the heavenly choir of the Dominations, may it please God to grant us grace to have dominion over our senses, and to correct our depraved passions. Amen.

One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Fourth Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the heavenly choir of the Powers, may God vouchsafe to keep our souls from the wiles and temptations of the devil. Amen.

One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Fifth Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the choir of the admirable celestial Virtues, may our Lord keep us from falling into temptation, and deliver us from evil. Amen.
One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Sixth Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the heavenly choir of the Principalities, may it please God to fill our souls with the spirit of true and hearty obedience. Amen.

One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Seventh Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the heavenly choir of Archangels, may it please God to grant its the gift of perseverance in the faith and in all good works, that we may thereby be enabled to attain unto the glory of Paradise. Amen.

One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Eighth Angelic Choir.


At the intercession of St. Michael and the Heavenly choir of Angels, may God vouchsafe to grant us the safe-conduct of the holy Angels through life, and after death a happy entrance into the everlasting glory of heaven. Amen.
One Pater noster and three Ave Maria’s, to the Ninth Angelic Choir.

Then say four Pater noster's in conclusion; the first to St. Michael, the second to St. Gabriel, the third to St. Raphael, the fourth to your Angel Guardian.

This exercise then ends with the following Antiphon.


Michael, glorious Prince, chief and champion of the heavenly host, guardian of the souls of men, conqueror of the rebel angels, minister in the house of God, our worthy captain under Jesus Christ, endowed with superhuman excellence and virtue; vouchsafe to free us all from every evil, who with full confidence have recourse to thee; and by thy powerful protection enable us to make progress every day in the faithful service of our God.

V. Pray for us, most blessed Michael, prince of the Church of Jesus Christ.
R. That we may be made worthy of His promises.


Almighty and eternal God, who in thine own marvellous goodness and pity didst, for the common salvation of man, choose the glorious Archangel Michael to be the prince of Thy Church; make us worthy, we pray Thee, to be delivered by his beneficent protection from all our enemies, that at the hour of our death no one of them may approach to harm us, and that by the same Archangel Michael we may be introduced into the presence of Thy high and heavenly Majesty. Through the merits of the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Indulgences granted by Pope Pius IX in 1851
i. An indulgence of seven years and seven quarantines every time the Chaplet is said.
ii. An indulgence of 100 days daily to any one who carries this Chaplet about him, or kisses the medal with the representation of the holy angels appended to the said Chaplet.
iii. A plenary indulgence once a month to every one who says daily this Chaplet, on any one day when, after Confession and Communion, he shall pray for the exaltation of our holy Mother the Church and the safety of the Sovereign Pontiff.
iv. A plenary indulgence, with the conditions above named:
1. The Feast of the Apparition of St. Michael. May 18.
2. The Dedication of St. Michael. September 29.
3. St. Gabriel the Archangel. March 18.
4. St. Raphael the Archangel. October 24.
5. Holy Angel Guardians. October 2.

29th September, St Michael the Archangel

The Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel

September 29 was formerly dedicated to all the angels (Introit, Collect, Gradual, Communion), wherefore Pope Boniface II, about A.D. 530, chose that date to dedicate a church in the great circus, at Rome, to St. Michael. The Mass composed for the occasion has since been appointed for the 18th Sunday after Pentecost; it still relates to the dedication of a church. The present Mass was composed more recently.

The Hebrew meaning of Michael is: Who is like God, and recalls the combat which took place in heaven between "the archangel of God who deserved to be placed at the head of the heavenly host" and the devil. As we have fallen through sin into the power of Satan, it is St. Michael's part to continue the fight for our deliverance (Alleluia, and Prayer after Mass): wherefore our guardian angels are subordinate to him. St. Michael conquers Satan's pride and obtains humility for us. It is also he who presides over the worship of adoration rendered to the most High, for he offers to God the prayers of the saints symbolized by incense whose smoke rises towards heaven (Offertory, Blessing of the incense). When a Christian has left this world, we pray that the standard-bearer St. Michael should introduce him into heaven; he is also often represented with the scales of divine justice wherein souls are weighed. His name is mentioned in the Confiteor, after that of Mary who is the Queen of Angels.

St. Michael was the protecting angel of the synagogue, as he is now of the Church which has succeeded it. To him the liturgy attributes the revelation of the future made to St. John in the Apocalypse (Epistle).

Benedicite Dominum, omnes Angeli ejus: potentes virtute, qui facitis verbum ejus, ad audiendam vocem sermonem ejus. * Benedic, anima mea, Domino: et omnia, quae intra me sunt, nomini sancto ejus.
Bless the Lord all ye His angels: you that are mighty in strength, and execute His word, hearkening to the voice of His orders. * Bless the Lord, O my soul: and let all that is within me bless His holy name.
(Psalm 102:20,1 from the introit of Mass)

Deus, qui miro ordine, Angelorum ministeria hominumque dispensas: concede propitius; ut, a quibus tibi ministrantibus in caelo semper assistitur, ab his in terra vita nostra muniatur.
O God, who in a wonderful I order hast established the ministry of angels and of men, mercifully grant that even as Thy holy angels ever do Thee service in heaven, so at all times they may defend us on earth.

Lesson from the Apocalypse of Blessed John the Apostle.
In those days : God signified the things which must shortly come to pass, sending by His angel to His servant John, who hath given testimony to the word of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ, what things soever he hath seen. Blessed is he that readeth and heareth the words of this prophecy, and keepeth those things which are written in it; for the time is at hand. John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you and peace from Him that is, and that was, and that is to come; and from the seven spirits which are before His throne; and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the first-begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth, who hath loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood.
(Apocalypse 1:1-5)

Dum sacrum mysterium cerneret Joannes, Archangelus Michael tuba cecinit: Ignosce, Domine Deus noster, qui operis librum, et solvis signacula ejus, alleluia.
While John was beholding the sacred mystery, the Archangel Michael sounded a trumpet. Forgive us, O Lord our God, Thou who openest the book, and loosest the seals thereof, alleluia.
(Antiphon at the Magnificat)

From the Catholic Encyclopaedia: