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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Monday, 9 March 2015

9th March, Saint Frances of Rome, Widow

Saint Frances of Rome, Widow

Saint Frances, a noble Roman lady, showed forth the strength of virtues mentioned in the Epistle. She was married at the age of eleven to Lorenzo de Ponziani, and was for forty years the type of a perfect Christian spouse. Avoiding festivities, wearing the simplest apparel, devoting to prayer and to the care of the poor all her spare time after she had accomplished her domestic duties, she foUnded at Rome the House of the Oblates of the Congregation of Mount Olivet, under the rule of St. Benedict (1433). After the death of her husband, she retired there in order to purchase at the price of all her possessions, the precious pearl of eternal life (Gospel). Having thus become "the spouse of Christ" (Tract), she acquired by the continual contemplation of the Passion of Jesus the divine energy which enabled her to obtain a perfect mastery over her senses. To sustain her in her terrible encounters with the Spirit of Evil, God favoured her with the visible presence of her guardian Angel, with whom she conversed familiarly (Collect). She died in 1440. Her body is kept in Rome in the church of Santa Maria Nuova near the Forum, also called after her name, and of which Pius XI made a stational church in 1934 (Third Tuesday in Lent). At this holy season of penance let us, like St. Frances, imitate the life full of sacrifice of the Saviour.

Cognovi, Domine, quia aequitas judicia tua, et in veritate tua humiliasti me: confige timore tuo carnes meas, a mandatis tuis timui. * Beati immaculati in via, qui ambulant in lege Domini.
I know, O Lord, that Thy judgements are equity, and in Thy truth Thou hast humbled me: pierce Thou my flesh with Thy fear, I am afraid of Thy judgements. * Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord.
(Psalm 118:75 and 120:1 from the Introit of Mass).

Deus, qui beatam Franciscam famulam tuam, inter cetera gratiae tuae dona, familiari Angeli consuetidine decorasti: concede, quaesumus;  ut intercessionis ejus auxilio, Angelorum consortium consequi mereamur.
O God who, among other gifts of Thy grace, didst honour Thy servant Frances by frequent visitations of an angel: grant, we beseech Thee, that, helped by her prayers, we likewise may merit admittance into the fellowship of the angels.
From the Catholic Encyclopaedia:

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