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    As I noted in an article last June, when the restoration of the Church of St Maurice (San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore) of Milan was completed, it is a commonplace of Italian cultural reportage to describe a church which is especially rich in artworks as the “Sistine Chapel” of such-and-such. A classic example of this is the magnificent Scuola di San Rocco, “the Sistine Chapel of Venice.” As far as the city of Milan is concerned, the title is contested between two churches, the Charterhouse at Garegnano, and the church of St Maurice, attached to a now-suppressed convent which was formerly the most important female monastery in the city (whence its title “Greater Monastery.”) Since we just last week published some photographs of the former, taken by our Ambrosian correspondent Nicola de’Grandi, here are some of images of the latter.

    The monastery was founded in the Carolingian era, and included a church building that was much older, but the current church was begun in 1503. It is divided into two parts, one for the faithful and another for the nuns, who were quite strictly enclosed. By 1509, the basic structure of the church was completed, and the decoration of the church and its many side-chapels began, mainly through the patronage of the Bentivoglio family, four of whose daughters entered the convent, and other families associated with them. The painting of the church would continue though the rest of the 16th-century; the result is an impressive, if somewhat uneven, collection of frescoes, beginning with the disciples of Leonardo Da Vinci, chief among them Bernardino Luini, continuing through the early Mannerists, and completed at the end of the 1570s with the façade, the frescoes on the counterfaçade, and the main altarpiece for the nave of the public church, by Antonio Campi.

    The altar of the public church, with frescoes by B. Luini surrounding the altarpiece of the Adoration of the Magi by Antonio Campi.

    Noah’s Ark by Aurelio Luini, Bernardino’s son, 1556
    The nuns’ choir

    The Deposition from the Cross, by Callisto and Fulvio Piazza, 1555

    St Benedict, by an unknown follower of Luini, 

    Adam and Eve, also by Aurelio Luini 

    Ss Benedict, Maurus and Placid.

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    At that time: Jesus taketh unto him Peter and James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into a high mountain apart: And he was transfigured before them. And his face did shine as the sun: and his garments became white as snow. And behold there appeared to them Moses and Elias talking with him. And Peter answering, said to Jesus: Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles, one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. And as he was yet speaking, behold a bright cloud overshadowed them. And lo, a voice out of the cloud, saying: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased: hear ye him. And the disciples hearing, fell upon their face, and were very much afraid. And Jesus came and touched them: and said to them, Arise, and fear not. And they lifting up their eyes saw no one but only Jesus. And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying: Tell the vision to no man, till the Son of man be risen from the dead.
    The Transfiguration, by Guido da Siena, ca 1270 
    In illo tempore: Assumit Jesus Petrum, et Jacobum, et Joannem fratrem ejus, et ducit illos in montem excelsum seorsum: et transfiguratus est ante eos. Et resplenduit facies ejus sicut sol: vestimenta autem ejus facta sunt alba sicut nix. Et ecce apparuerunt illis Moyses et Elias cum eo loquentes. Respondens autem Petrus, dixit ad Jesum: Domine, bonum est nos hic esse: si vis, faciamus tria tabernacula, tibi unum, Moysi unum, et Eliæ unum. Adhuc eo loquente, ecce nubes lucida obumbravit eos. Et ecce vox de nube, dicens: Hic est Filius meus dilectus, in quo mihi bene complacui: ipsum audite. Et audientes discipuli ceciderunt in faciem suam, et timuerunt valde. Et accessit Jesus, et tetigit eos : dixitque eis: Surgite, et nolite timere. Levantes autem oculos suos, neminem viderunt, nisi solum Jesum. Et descendentibus illis de monte, præcepit eis Jesus, dicens: Nemini dixeritis visionem, donec Filius hominis a mortuis resurgat.

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    We continue following our friend Agnese’s visits to the Lenten Station Masses.

    Ember Wednesday - St Mary Major
    The traditional Mass readings for the three Ember Days in Lent form a group which are meant to be taken together, along with those of the Second Sunday, and are chosen in particular reference to the churches at which the stations are held in those days. Shawn and I wrote an article about this together in 2010, and I wrote another about these station days in 2012, which you might find interesting.

    The procession held before the Mass, which, as you can see below in the fourth picture, passed into the church’s atrium, and then entered the church again through the now-open Holy Door.






    Thursday of the First Week - St Lawrence in Panisperna
    Each year, as part of the traditional Lenten observance, Agnese misses a station or two due to circumstances beyond her control. In this case, the time of the Mass at San Lorenzo in Panisperna was changed without prior notice. Click to see some pictures from last year of this church’s very impressive relic collection.



    Ember Friday - The Church of the Twelve Apostles







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    The CMAA is pleased to announce new chant courses for 2016, to be held from June 27 to July 1 at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

    The church on Duquesne University’s Campus
    Ward I - That All May Sing

    Results from our Colloquium survey last summer indicated that our membership is clamoring for more information and training about teaching children. Covering the topics in one-hour breakout sessions at a Colloquium, no matter how valuable, isn't sufficient time to allow participants to gain the skills needed.

    In response, for the first time, we will be offering a beginning course in the Ward method concurrent with our Chant Intensive course.

    The five-day course will be taught by Scott Turkington, providing training to allow participants to teach groups of children using these tried and true methods. Read the entire description at the CMAA Summer Chant webpage.

    Gain the skills and tools you need to begin teaching the Catholic leaders of tomorrow to sing using Justine Ward's methods.

    (The CMAA Ward course does not have any official Ward accreditation and is not affiliated with the Center for Ward Studies.)



    Summer Chant Intensive for Directors

    The CMAA has offered Chant Intensive courses since 2008. Each year, new attendees take the knowledge home and use it in their home parishes, increasing their skill level and sharing the information with others. What has been a consistent request from CMAA program attendees has been more information and training on effective chant direction. This summer's Chant Intensive will do just that.

    This course (Monday – Friday) will be taught by Wilko Brouwers, focusing on directing techniques for current and prospective chant directors.

    Through the use of,
    - General directing exercises
    - Individual practice with the choir group (participants choose their own chant pieces), and
    - Video analysis
    participants in the directing course will gain knowledge and practical experience during the 5-day course. The class will have two sections -- for prospective directors and for singers -- see the complete description at our Summer Chant Course webpage.

    The basics of chant will not be taught in this course, other than as illustrations for the directing course.

    Because of the nature of our summer course offerings, we must limit class sizes to allow time for adequate interaction with the instructors.

    So... if you have been waiting for the opportunity to study with a master director to gain the skill and confidence to direct your own schola or would like to gain the skills to improve the sound of your choir, please make plans to join us this summer in Pittsburgh.

    REGISTER ONLINE NOW

    Wilko Brouwers
    Scott Turkington

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    At this time of year, one not infrequently hears about Catholics or other Christians planning “seder meals” as part of their Lenten or Holy Week observances. To many, it seems like a good idea to reconnect with Jewish roots, but the purpose of this article is to demonstrate how wrong-headed this idea is, how it flirts with heresy, and what we might do differently if we’d like to do anything at all in this direction.

    The Last Supper was a Passover meal. The original Passover was celebrated during the exodus from Egypt, when the people slaughtered a lamb and put its blood over their doorposts so that the angel of death would “pass over” them. Because they had to leave in a hurry, they did not have time to let their bread rise, and so they ate unleavened bread. This became a yearly celebration for Israel — something done “in remembrance” of the sparing of the firstborn’s life, and of the consequent exodus. The Passover lamb had to be taken to the Temple and sacrificed, and then the people would eat of the sacrifice; it was a sacrificial meal, and made visible the fact that even the laypeople of Israel were a “kingdom of priests.”

    Now that the Temple has been destroyed, Jews do not eat the Passover meal; instead, they eat the “Seder,” which is not a sacrificial meal. Orthodox Jews refuse even to eat lamb at a Seder because no sacrificial lamb is possible for them now.

    The ritual by the time of Jesus involved four cups of wine, parsley or some other green, unleavened bread, and the singing of certain psalms. Jesus transformed the Passover meal into a new ritual — the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. By identifying the bread as his own body and offering it to the disciples to eat, he pointed to himself as the new lamb of sacrifice (22:19): “This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” Before giving the Eucharistic bread, Jesus had already given them a cup of wine; this was the second of the four cups of wine. But after he gave them the Eucharistic bread, he identified the third cup as his own blood (22:20): “And likewise the cup after supper, saying, “This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.” Each of the four Passover cups had a name, and the third cup was known as the “cup of blessing.” Note 1 Corinthians 10:16, “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ?”

    Note that when Moses and Elijah appeared with Jesus at the transfiguration, they were discussing Jesus’ “exodus” which he was to accomplish (Luke 9:31). Jesus’ passion and resurrection are the new exodus. Correspondingly, he gives his disciples a new Passover ritual to go with the new exodus. In this new Passover, Jesus is the lamb whose blood averts the angel of death; instead of Egypt, we are delivered from the state of sin and a heart inclined to evil (as represented by Pharaoh’s “hardened heart”).

    In this way, the sacrifice Jesus offered on the cross founds a new ritual of sacrifice for us. As Jesus’ death and resurrection fulfilled the history and mission of Israel, so the liturgy he gave us to commemorate and re-offer his death fulfills the Passover and the creation of Israel as a nation. The celebration of the Eucharist creates the Church as the new Israel, the kingdom of God. As Jesus’ death took the punishment for the sins of the whole world, so the Mass is offered for the sins of all of us. But there is more than sin and redemption. Jesus’ perfect offering to the Father was also the fulfillment of man’s mission as cosmic priest to bring all of creation back to God in an act of worship. There is a cosmic aspect to the Mass; it is the fulfillment of creation’s purpose. This is why John Paul II said that every Mass, wherever it is offered, is offered “on the altar of the world.”

    On Holy Thursday last year, a colleague of mine gave a talk before an evening Jewish-style meal. He explained that it does not make sense to celebrate a Seder Meal as a way to “reenact” the Last Supper. Historically, the Seder Meal was invented as a way to make up for the lack of the Passover Supper because there was no longer temple sacrifice after 70 AD. In other words, the Seder as now practiced postdates our Lord’s institution of the Eucharist, and is, in part, an ongoing sign that the Jews do not acknowledge Jesus as the Christ, the one Messiah and Savior of mankind, apart from whom there is no salvation. For these reasons, my colleague advocated a Passover-style dinner, not a Seder Meal. During this dinner, he commented on the different dishes at the tables, explained their Old Testament symbolism, and showed how their meaning was fulfilled in the sacrifice of the true unblemished Lamb, which is made present for us in the Sacrifice of the Mass.

    So much, then, for why a Seder Meal would be a totally incoherent thing for Christians to do. There is, moreover, this theological consideration: separating the Jewish meal from the act of animal sacrifice, as the Seder deliberately does, fundamentally confuses the actual symbolism of the Passover supper, and therefore bars any understanding of how this supper foreshadows the Passion. Among other things, the anthropological significance of Jesus Christ replacing the sacrifice of another by His own self-sacrifice is lost.

    Then, a practical consideration. A Seder meal is a currently practiced religious ritual for the Jews who do it. Hence, Catholics attending a Seder meal, even if no rabbi were present, would rightly be at a loss to know whether they were play-acting, going through an academic exercise, attempting to turn a Jewish custom into a Christian meditation, or even attempting to pray like Jews (as if we could momentarily function as people of a different religion). In short, it is not possible to simulate a Seder without implying that one is conducting a religious observance. In contrast, as we have shown, it is possible to serve a Passover-like meal for educational purposes, since the Jewish Passover, narrowly speaking, has not been observed as a religious ritual for close to 2,000 years. Such a meal can indeed be a welcome opportunity for sound catechesis about the Passion of our Lord and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.



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    June 20 - 25, 2016

    Register by March 1st for the 2016 Colloquium to receive Early Bird Tuition Rates and Save $50

    If you register and pay in full by March 1st, you'll receive Early Bird tuition rates for this summer's Church Music Association of America Colloquium. The Colloquium is to be held in St. Louis, MO, at the St. Louis City Center Hotel, June 20-25, 2016.

    REGISTER ONLINE NOW

    Three Great venues: the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, the Shrine of St. Joseph, and the Pro-Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist and Apostle.

    The Shrine of St Joseph, St Louis, Missouri
    Are you a composer? Plan to participate in our New Music breakouts with David Hughes.

    Sing Mozart, Palestrina or a variety of motets in your chosen polyphonic choir. There is also a beginning polyphonic choir again this year, which will sing a motet later in the week. See all the details and begin making your choir selections now.

    NEW! Repertory Listing Uploaded to our Website!

    Questions about accommodations, schedule, or any other detail? Visit our webpage about Colloquium detail here. Read the biographical information about our faculty to help choose your choirs and breakout sessions.

    Planning to apply for a scholarship? Don’t delay. Application and recommendation forms must be received by us by April 7, 2016.

    For any other questions, don't hesitate to contact the CMAA at programs@musicasacra.com.

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    The latest edition of the Orthodox Arts Journal has a feature on the recently dedicated Cathedral of the Protection of the Mother of God at Yasenevo, which overlooks Moscow. It is was dedicated by Patriarch Kirill and appropriately (given his recent meeting with Pope Francis) the mosaics especially draw inspiration from traditional Western iconographic forms. As the article explains, they looked to the Romanesque churches of Sicily which were built in the Byzantine-influenced Romanesque style in the 12th century under the patronage of the Norman king, Roger II. In doing this, the art conforms fully to the principles that define the iconographic tradition, but in an exciting way that is unusual in Russia. 

    Below, the interior mosaics and exterior of the cathedral:



    Contrast those with the interior and exterior of the Cappella Palatina in Palermo, Sicily



    I have only seen the photographs that are included in the article, but based upon these I would say that this is a model lesson in how to draw into your own tradition influences from outside without compromising core principles. It is fresh and exciting, and this is the mark of a truly living tradition. Furthermore, there is plenty of more conventional, Eastern style iconography here too, and the external appearance of the Church is clearly that of an Eastern church.



    I suggest that Catholics in the West should look at the way in which the Eastern Church so successfully reestablished its iconographic tradition of art in the  mid-20th century under figures such as Ouspensky and Kroug. They have done so much more than recreate pastiche. The best of the icon painters of today who work in this tradition are producing work that bears the mark of its time and place and can stand alongside the great artists of the past. This is what I hope to see applied to our distinctly Western traditions of liturgical art in the future.




    You can read the whole article in Orthodox Arts Journal, here.

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    The Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology, which is part of the Graduate Theological Union at Berkeley University in California, is offering an exciting new Certificate in Theological Studies which is intended for working artists. This is a Master’s level, four-course (12-unit) Certificate which is recommended for those who already have a working knowledge of a specific art medium (visual arts, music, architecture etc.), and wish to augment their expertise with a specialized focus in the relationship of the fine arts to Catholic worship and culture.

    The approach to this certificate program assumes the “cross-disciplinary approach” between philosophy and theology that uniquely characterizes all DSPT curricula. Furthermore, in this particular program there will be a focus on the integration of theory with praxis, particularly as it applies to Catholic worship and culture. An emphasis on the outcomes of this course is on the evangelization of the culture through a well discerned engagement with contemporary cultures, so that the creativity of the artist may be directed towards the engagement of contemporary man, without any compromise of the core principles of a traditional Christian culture.

    The Certificate program of studies is organized by the Academic Dean of the DSPT, Fr Chris Renz; readers may remember that I highlighted his excellent article on liturgy and culture recently published in Antiphon. Also involved will be Fr Michael Morris, art historian and professor of religion and the arts at DSPT, who is also well known as a writer on Christian art and culture. He and Fr Renz are both leading lights in the research institute for religion and the arts called the Santa Fe Institute, which has over 12,000 volumes in its library. This resource will be available to students on this certificate.

    Anyone who has read any of my writings over the years will see why I am enthusiastic about this – these themes of inculturation, worship and fresh creativity are at the heart of my own ideas about the evangelization of the culture. I am thrilled, as you can imagine, when Fr Renz told me that he intends to use my book the Way of Beauty as one of the texts for the opening course of the Certificate program.

    The first course of the four to be offered this coming Fall is called the Foundational Principles of Catholic Liturgy and Worship. To complete the Certificate in Theological Studies program with a specialization in Sacred Arts, the student must complete the four courses indicated below, typically over two or more semesters.
    1. Foundational Principles of Catholic Liturgy and Worship (next offered Fall 2016)
    2. Liturgical Piety: Anthropological Foundations of Catholic Worship (next offered Spring 2017)
    3. One elective offering from any advisor-approved Religion and the Arts course. These are the courses that will particularly focus on practical elements, such as painting.
    4. Christian Iconography (offered Fall 2016)

    The format for all courses is once per week for just under 3 hours. They will typically offered during the weekday, which means that you have to be within striking distance of Berkeley, California in order to take it.

    The named outcomes are to:
    • imbue students with an understanding of sacred art and its relationship to sacred liturgy;
    • provide students with the philosophical and theological foundations for the anthropological as well as the transcendent aspects of art;
    • provide basic principles for using the fine arts as a vehicle for “preaching the gospel” to the contemporary culture.

    Application Process 

    Applicants must complete the DSPT Certificate of Theological Studies application (found at the DSPT website), including a statement of purpose, official transcript, and two letters of recommendation. Application is on a rolling admission process.

    Tuition and Fees 

    Tuition rate for 2016-2017 academic year is $715 per semester unit (all courses are 3 units). For further information, contact Fr. Chris Renz, O.P. at crenz@dspt.edu, or 510-883-2084. You can read about this course on the DSPT website at www.dspt.edu/sacred-arts



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    Several years ago, I read a very interesting book called Mourning into Joy: Music, Raphael, and Saint Cecilia, by Thomas Connolly. (Yale Univ. Press, 1995). The principal subject is Raphael’s painting The Ecstasy of St Cecilia, but it also contains a great deal of information about devotion to the Saint, at whose basilica the Lenten station is held today. I am here paraphrasing what Connolly writes about this station, and its connection to Cecilia; the credit for putting this information together is entirely his.
    The Ecstasy of St Cecilia, by Raphael, 1515-17, now in the National Gallery of Bologna. On St Cecilia’s left are Ss Paul and John the Evangelist, on her right, Ss Augustine and Mary Magdalene. The broken instruments at her feet symbolize that she has rejected the things of this world in order to “sing only to God in her heart”, as is stated in her Office.
    In 1744, three inscriptions were found very close to the Basilica of St Cecilia in the Trastevere area of Rome, referring to a small shrine of the “Bona Dea”, as she was called, “the good goddess.” Although she was quite popular in ancient Rome, we know very little about this goddess, since men were excluded from participation in her cult, and it was forbidden to write down what took place at her two annual festivals. One of these was held at a temple dedicated to her on the Aventine hill, the other in the house of the senior magistrate of the Republic, presided over by his wife. During the rites, all men and male animals were excluded from the house; in fact, “Good Goddess” is a euphemistic name, since men were not allowed to speak or even know her true name. One of the most famous episodes in the history of the late Roman Republic, involving all of the leading political figures of the day, including Cicero, Pompey and Julius Caesar, took place when these rites were held in the latter’s house in 62 BC. A man named Clodius Pulcher dressed as a woman in an attempt to sneak into the rites and seduce Caesar’s wife, creating an enormous scandal and long-lasting scandal.

    The Bona Dea was a goddess very much associated with female chastity, and therefore, anything to do with the goddess of sexual desire, Venus, was also removed from the house where the rites of the Bona Dea were held. This would include any statues and images of Venus, and most particularly the plant myrtle, which was woven into crowns and worn on the head by her worshippers at her principal festivals.


    When the Lenten Station is held at the Basilica of St Cecilia on the Wednesday of the Second Week, next door to a shrine of the Bona Dea, the traditional Epistle is taken from the Deuterocanonical additions to the book of Esther, the only reading from that book in the Missal. (This reading was later borrowed from this day for the votive Mass “against the pagans.” It has been suppressed in the post-Conciliar rite.) In chapter 13, Mardochai is praying for the delivery of the Jewish people from their enemy Haman, who has arranged for the Persian Emperor to order the massacre of all the Jews in his dominions.

    “In those days, Mardochai prayed to the Lord, saying, ‘O Lord, Lord, almighty king, for all things are in thy power, and there is none that can resist thy will, if thou determine to save Israel. Thou hast made heaven and earth, and all things that are under the cope of heaven. Thou art Lord of all, and there is none that can resist thy majesty. And now, O Lord, O king, O God of Abraham, have mercy on thy people, because our enemies resolve to destroy us, and extinguish thy inheritance. Despise not thy portion, which thou hast redeemed for thyself out of Egypt. Hear my supplication, and be merciful to thy lot and inheritance, and turn our mourning into joy, that we may live and praise thy name, O Lord, and shut not the mouths of them that sing to thee, O Lord, our God.’ ” (vss. 9-11 and 15-17)

    This is the reading as it appears in the Missal of St Pius V, but before the Tridentine reform, it began as follows: “In those days, Esther prayed to the Lord, saying…” And this, despite the fact that it is Mardochai who offers this prayer in the Bible.

    A leaf of a Roman Missal printed at Lyon in 1497. The Mass for today’s station begins in the middle of the right column.
    It might seem that by taking the words of a man and putting them in the mouth of a woman, the Church has somehow adopted or absorbed an aspect of the Bona Dea cult when reading these words right next door to her shrine at the Basilica of St Cecilia. This is not the case, however. In chapter 2, 7, it is stated that Esther, (who becomes the Queen of Persia, and saves the Jews from Haman) was called “Hadassah,” (הֲדַסָּה) which is the Hebrew word for “myrtle”, the plant of Venus that was excluded from the rites of the Bona Dea. This would therefore be a deliberate critique of the Bona Dea, and a statement of rejection of the many pagan cults that excluded one class of persons or another.

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    Fictionally, let’s presume an elderly great uncle has just passed, and YOU are set to inherit his 1987 Chyrsler LeBaron sedan. He was a dentist, and the car was garaged and only driven in fair weather. The oil was changed every 2,800 miles, and the maroon paint has a deep shine. It’s hard to say exactly what to do with the car. Even though it has only 46,000 miles, it’s not valuable on the open market, nor is it collectible or fashionable. Nonetheless, it works perfectly, gets 28 mpg, and still smells of vanilla “little tree” air fresheners. It was his pride and joy.
    Forgetting for a moment that this machine goes 75 miles per hour, using carefully timed explosions of gasoline -- forgetting that it works exactly as it was intended to do -- it’s just not fashionable. But it's yours!
    When it comes to the aesthetics of liturgy, many of us young Catholics find ourselves in a similar position. We’ve inherited the architectural experiments of the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, all of which were built to outlast the Cold War. Terrazzo floors, thick brick walls, conduit wiring, metal roofs, steam heat… these things were meant to last. With the return to more ancient, and arguably more beautiful, styles of architecture, these 1960s structures are just not fashionable anymore. 
    The best way to honor a gift and its giver, however, is to use it, and use it well. I would like to suggest that the best way to inherit these structures is (1) to appreciate and participate in the communities that call them home, and (2) gently to encourage liturgical excellence and obedience, and lastly (3) to seek to foster a “hermeneutic of continuity” as much as possible. 
    After four years serving as Director of Music in an 1870 stone neo-Gothic church, with two historic pipe organs and German stained glass, I recently accepted a full-time position closer to home in a parish which meets in a modern building. Over 1600 families call this parish home, the church is filled to capacity with young families for four Masses each weekend, and over 700 kids are in religious education. The parish is growing, and the liturgy is meeting the spiritual needs of the community. The congregation sings well and participates devoutly. There are several choirs and a string orchestra. The pastor very much appreciates good music, and would like to see the music program develop. It's a wonderful place, and I'm thrilled to be a part of it. I look forward to doing great work in this vibrant parish. 
    If our focus were entirely on the aesthetics of the church building, we could see poverty.  If however, we are looking for grace and faith, we see explosions happening everywhere, and a community cruising at 75 mph in the fast lane. As it turns out, people in this parish are seeking to grow in their Catholic faith, too. These good folks ought to be encouraged and loved; and pastorally speaking, it is my sacred duty as Director of Music to lead them gently to the greenest pastures our Catholic tradition has to offer. 
    This past Sunday evening, over 35 people gathered to sing Compline, using traditional Gregorian Chant. It was the first time singing the office for many of them, and each week more people show up. Similarly we have returned to singing the psalm at Mass using the text as written in the Lectionary and psalm tones. This seemingly small point of obedience was a big step for some, but it turns out people are grateful and appreciative. It helps that we’re taking special care to sing the lectionary psalms well. These are little steps in a good direction. Good taste, gentle leadership, and excellence go a long way.  
    Naturally, you can see the point of my article. I would like to encourage tradition-loving Catholics not to turn their noses up at the LeBaron. Parish work in all settings takes patience, respect, a listening ear and open mind, leadership and obedience to the mind of the church, a strong and meaningful personal faith, courage, and lastly some social skills and gentleness. In years past, I viewed the liturgical and musical failings of local parishes as moral faults, plain and simple. After all, the rules are all in the GIRM, aren't they? For me, for years, the result of this approach was anger, frustration, despair, and eventually isolation. Not only did it become a scandal for me, I was also making absolutely no progress toward a solution. This is a very dangerous road, and really it's a dead end. 
    We, however, are educators and mentors first. We hold the standards in one hand, and the student in the other. It is never acceptable to mock a student for things outside of his control. Instead, every day, an educator breaks big goals into smaller tasks. In fact, it’s so engrained in the teaching profession that we have an acronym for it: TSWBAT or “Today Students Will Be Able To.” What improvements can we make today? Liturgically speaking, we have to work gently, consistently, and with the larger goal in mind. This larger goal is theological virtue: faith, hope, and love. Of course, these virtues are best understood in the context of obedience and humility; however, if we can achieve gradual overall improvement, we have accomplished much.

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    A reader wrote in to ask why, in the traditional rite, the feast of St Matthias the Apostle is moved from February 24th to the following day every leap year. The answer lies in the very ancient Roman calendar, which is still part of the Church’s liturgy to this day; it is used in the calendars printed at the beginning of the Missal and Breviary, and in the Martyrology, the names of the days are still read out according to the Roman system.

    In the Roman calendar, each month has three days which are called the Kalends, Nones and Ides; the first of these three is the first day of each month. In March, May, July and October, the Nones are on the 7th, and the Ides on the 15th; in all other months, they are on the 5th and 13th. These designations probably arose, like most features of most calendars, from some sort of religious observances fixed to those days, perhaps connected to a very primitive lunar calendar, but we know nothing for certain about their origin.

    The first page of the calendar from a 13th century Missal according to the Use of Paris. The large KL at the top is the abbreviation of “Kalendae.” The numbers in the third column give the number of days until the following Nones, Ides or Kalends; the fourth column has abbreviations of “Nonae”, “Idus ” or “Kalendae.” Note that the modern system of dating is not used at all here. (Bibliothèque nationale de France, Département des manuscrits, Latin 1112)
    The Romans named the days of each month by counting backwards from these three points. Thus, Julius Caesar was killed on the day which we call March 15, but which they called “the Ides of March”; their name for the 14th was therefore “the day before the Ides of March.” As every Latin students knows, this system becomes difficult to keep track of because the Romans counted inclusively, not exclusively; therefore, the day we call “March 13” was called “three days before the Ides of March”, (not “two days before”), including the day itself, the day before the Ides, and the Ides themselves. We can only assume that this system is not an example of complexity created for complexity’s sake, and that it served as a way of counting down to and preparing for whatever religious observance was connected to the three points.

    When the Julian Calendar was instituted in 46 BC, establishing the regular leap day every four years, the leap day itself was added by counting “the sixth day before the Kalends of March” twice. From this, the Latin term for “leap year” is “annus bisextilis”, meaning “a year in which the sixth day (before the Kalends of March) occurs twice.” This term for leap year is still used in all the Romance languages, as in Italian “anno bisestile”, and was even adopted by the Greeks, (“disekto etos” in the modern language), even though the ancient Greeks had their own very different calendar. (The Romans had an idiom “ad kalendas graecas – until the Greek kalends”, meaning “postponed forever,” since there were no kalends in the Greek calendar; it was a favorite expression of the Emperor Augustus, and also survives in the Romance languages.)

    Pilgrims venerating the relics of St Matthias the Apostle in the crypt of the abbey named after him in the German city of Trier. He is commonly said to be the only Apostle whose relics are kept anywhere north of the Alps, but the Roman Basilica of St Mary Major also has relics venerated as his since the beginning of the 11th century.
    When the feast of St Matthias came into the Roman Rite sometime between the 9th and 11th centuries, it was fixed to this “sixth” day before the kalends of March, which we call February 24. The precise reason for this choice is unknown, but it is surely not mere coincidence that nine other months have the feast of an Apostle or Evangelist within their last ten days, thus distributing them more or less evenly through the year. In a leap year, when there are two such days, Matthias’ vigil is kept on the first of the two, and his feast on the second. Thus, although his feast is transferred on the modern calendar, it remains in its place on the Roman calendar. This also applies to the feast of St Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows, which is kept on the 27th in a regular year, the 28th in a leap year; in both cases, his feast is on “tertio Kalendas Martii” on the Roman calendar. The same would apply to any local feast occurring between February 24 and 28.

    The backwards reckoning of the Roman Calendar is also relevant for the dating of the Nativity of St John the Baptist, one of the most ancient of all the Church’s feasts, as it relates to the Birth of Christ. Its date is determined by the words of St. Luke’s Gospel that John’s mother Elizabeth was six months pregnant at the time of the Annunciation. It is kept on June 24th, however, where Christmas and the Annunciation are kept on the 25th of their respective months, because on the Roman calendar, all three feasts are on the “eighth” day before the Kalends of the following months.

    St Matthias, by the workshop of Simone Martini, 1317-19. (public domain image from Wikimedia Commons.)
    In the post-Conciliar calendar, St Matthias has been moved to May 14th, so that his feast may occur roughly after the Ascension, since the very first thing the Apostles did after the Ascension was elect him to replace the traitor Judas. Easter can occur within a range 35 days, from March 22 to April 25. So in point of fact, on the first five days of this range (March 22-26), St Matthias’ new feast day will occur on or after Pentecost; on the last 21 (April 5-25) it will occur on or before the Ascension. This may seem to make the transfer of St Matthias’ day highly illogical; however, the occurrences of Easter are not distributed evenly over this range. The earliest date, March 22, has occurred only four times since the Gregorian Calendar was instituted in 1582, and will not occur again until 2285; the latest date comes only once a century. Factoring in the lamentable and lamentably widespread custom of celebrating the Ascension on Sunday, St Matthias’ feast occurs after it roughly 40% of the time.

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    My brother sent me a link to this article on the MPR website. This story seems to be getting around - it was on the New Yorker website too! It seems that there is a new trend of adults buying coloring books for themselves. Within a couple of years this has gone from nowhere to sales of millions, yes millions, of books. The top sellers are based upon intricate line drawings of decorative arrangements, with flora and scenes from fantasies that stimulate the imagination.



    It strikes me that the possibilities of engagement with non-Catholics and even non Christians are huge here. What about a coloring-in Book of Kells, or any other illuminated manuscript such as the Westminster Psalter? How about the sort of illuminations that one sees on altar cards? If adults find the coloring-in of scenes from Game of Thrones or Harry Potter absorbing and therapeutic, I suggest that the effect would be even better if the imagination was directed towards heavenly realities.




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    Last weekend, Fr Carlos Hamel of the Fraternity of St Joseph the Guardian, a community based in the French Diocese of Frèjus-Toulon, was at the Church of St John the Baptist in Allentown, Pennsylvania, to preach an Ignatian Retreat; the participants were able to attend a number of sung Masses, with a Solemn Mass on Sunday, as well as the singing of Prime, Vespers and Compline, and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Fr Hamel also celebrated a Mass at the chapel of Princeton University, shown in the first several pictures below from the Facebook page of the FSJG; the rest are from the church in Allentown.















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    Monday of the Second Week of Lent - San Clemente

    Our pilgrim-on-the-scene Agnese has really outdone herself with some very beautiful images of the Stational liturgy at San Clemente this week. The procession before the Mass began as usual in the ruins of the ancient basilica below the current one, made its way upstairs and through the large portico, before entering for the Mass. San Clemente has been home to the Irish Dominican friars in Rome since the later 17th century, and we see them participating in the procession. Also notice in the 7th photo the custom of strewing greenery on the floors of churches during the station Masses. (Nobody seems to really know where this comes from or why it is done.)
    The basilica is famously built on three levels; the 12th-century church seen below in the 7th and 8th pictures sits on top of a church of the 4th century, which in turn sits on top of two ancient Roman buildings, one of the late first and another of the mid-2nd century. All three of these levels are accessible to the public. When the second level, the church of the 4th century, was dug out in the middle of the 19th century, no remains of an altar or an part of the sanctuary were found . The archeologists soon realized that in the process of building the newer church on top of the older, the 12-century builders had dismantled them entirely, moved them upstairs, and reassembled them in their current place. The altar and baldachin seen here were then newly made so that the newly rediscovered spaces of the older church could be used once again for worship.
    On the left can be seen some of the fresco work which survives in the 4th-century basilica.






    Tuesday of the Second Week of Lent - Santa Balbina

    Traditionally, before the station Mass on this day there is a procession from the nearby Norbertine College, and the Mass itself is sung by the clergy and seminarians of the college. The first photograph shows members of the clergy exiting the main door of the college, followed by the procession though the rather narrow streets on the way to Santa Balbina.







    Wednesday of the Second Week - St Cecilia in Trastevere

    The Basilica of St Cecilia is home to a community of cloistered Benedictine nuns.



    The famous statue of St Cecilia by Stefano Maderno, depicting her as her body was said to have been found when her tomb was opened in 1599.


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  • 02/27/16--23:41: How is Your Latin OF Doing?
  • Last month, in response to this article by Mons. Charles Pope at the National Catholic Register, warning that many EF congregations may not be growing, or even shrinking, I posed to our readers the question “How is Your TLM Doing?” The responses, which you can read in the combox attached to that article, unsurprisingly, ranged all over the place, some of them very much cause for optimism, others not so much, and there was also a great deal of commentary on Mons. Pope’s article.

    At the suggestion of one of our regular commenters, I would like to pose a second question in a similar vein, and invite all of our readers to sound off in the combox.

    Since it was not even remotely the will of the Second Vatican Council that the use of Latin disappear from the majority of our churches, what is your church or apostolate doing to promote greater interest in, understanding of, and love for the Ordinary Form of the Mass in Latin, and is it working? And conversely, if attendance at your Latin OF is shrinking, why do you think this is happening, and what do you think could be done to change it?

    Please read this before commenting: I realize that we need to define some terms here, before this question can be answered, since it is almost unheard of for any Mass in the post-Conciliar Rite to be said entirely in Latin. For the purposes of this survey, a Mass counts as “a Latin OF” if the Ordinary is sung or said in Latin, and the Canon is said in Latin.

    As I wrote vis-à-vis the TLM survey question, I believe I can trust our readers to contribute to such a discussion in a constructive manner, without bashing people or airing grievances. If you want to report that your Latin OF is not doing well for whatever reason, DO NOT mention anything specific to identify it, such as the names of people (clergy or lay), dioceses, churches, congregations, choir directors etc. Comments which stray out of these boundaries will be deleted.

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    Until this past September, I had never been to Paris, and a fortiori, had never been to the Musée de Cluny (Musée Nationale du Moyen Âge), or the medieval collection at the Louvre, or the treasury of the Cathedral of Notre Dame. My son and I visited these three remarkable places, looking closely at the liturgical treasures they contain. Although we told ourselves ahead of time that we were going to favor our eyes and brains and not take pictures of everything, I allowed myself photos of items that struck me as having, for one reason or another, high interest to NLM readers.

    In the past, NLM has drawn attention to custom-made altar cards for the traditional Latin Mass and has recommended that people commission altar cards from artists or, at very least, search around for more artistic diversity than the standard cards that are reproduced in vast numbers, as useful as they are unquestionably are. When one is just starting up a TLM apostolate, the budget is usually tight and what matters is having an affordable set of altar cards available for Mass. As time goes on, however, and especially in the context of a stable community, a dedicated parish or a religious house, we may want to give serious thought to how we might augment the beauty of the furnishings of the altar and the sanctuary, and even, if possible, use the occasion for offering patronage to a promising Catholic artist. The fine arts will never take off again in the Church if we who claim to love beautiful things do not step forward and donate for this specific purpose.

    It is no insult if a patron asks an artist to emulate an historical model, and no shame if an artist produces excellent copies of past models. So much great art of the past, particularly in the Middle Ages, was born in the midst of a well-defined system of apprenticeship, with successive artists able to achieve better work thanks to the humble discipline of faithful imitation. The modern cult of the artistic genius and his or her “originality” has led only to an accelerating debasement and derangement of art. If today’s artists start off by patiently and humbly emulating historic models, tomorrow’s artists, under the guidance, might stand a chance of producing something more brilliant and unique, while yet beautiful.

    Today, I would simply like to share photos of a set of altar cards kept in the treasury of the Cathedral of Notre Dame. Their exquisite calligraphy and ornamentation, set within the Baroque frames, elevates them above the realm of the everyday or the utilitarian. These are no longer mere textual prompts but works of beauty that give glory to God, the Greatest and Best.

    While I’m at it, let me share a photo of a side altar at St. Catherine of Siena church in New York City, an altar dedicated quite obviously to the celebration of Masses for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. Notice how the altar cards here are exceptionally well integrated into the overall scheme, and how they make their own artistic contribution to the ensemble. It is as if the craftsman said to himself: “These cards have a certain function, but since they are going to be visible throughout, I will make them worth looking at.” It is one more example of the Catholic way of raising up the mundane and making a virtue of necessity.



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  • 02/29/16--10:47: St. John Cassian, Feb. 29
  • Icon of St. John Cassian the Roman
    Today on the Byzantine calendar is the feast of St. John Cassian. There is a nice biography of this link between East and West at the Orthodox Church of America’s website. But for some fun reading, I thought I would offer Vladimir Soloviev’s interpretation of a Russian legend as to why St. John Cassian had a feast day on leap year. One might object to his interpretation, but it seems a worthy reflection for this feast day.
    A popular Russian legend tells how St. Nicolas and St. Cassian were upon a visit to the earth. On their journey they met a poor peasant who had got his wagon, with a load of hay upon it, stuck in the mud and was making fruitless efforts to get his horses on.
    “Let’s go and give the good fellow a hand,” said St. Nicolas.
    “Not I; I’m keeping out of it,” replied St. Cassian, “I don’t want to get my coat dirty.”
    “Well, wait for me,” said St. Nicolas, “or go on without me if you like,” and plunging without hesitation into the mud he vigorously assisted the peasant in dragging his wagon out of the rut. When he had finished the job and caught his companion up, he was all covered in filth; his coat was torn and soiled and looked like a beggar’s rags. St. Peter was amazed to see him arrive at the gate of Paradise in this condition.
    “I say! Who ever got you into that state?” he asked. St. Nicolas told his story.
    “And what about you?” asked St. Peter, turning to St. Cassian. “Weren’t you with him in this encounter?”
    “Yes, but I don’t meddle in things that are no concern of mine, and I was especially anxious not to get my beautiful clean coat dirty.”
    “Very well,” said St. Peter, “you, St. Nicolas, because you were not afraid of getting dirty in helping your neighbor out of a difficulty, shall for the future have two feasts a year, and you shall be reckoned the greatest of saints after me by all the peasants of holy Russia. And you, St. Cassian, must be content with having a nice clean coat; you shall have your feast day in leap-year only, once every four years.” 
    We may well forgive St. Cassian for his dislike of manual labor and the mud of the highroad. But he would be quite wrong to condemn his companion for having a different idea of the duties of Saints towards mankind. We may like St. Cassian’s clean and spotless clothes, but since our wagon is still deep in the mud, St. Nicolas is the one we really need, the stout-hearted Saint who is always ready to get to work and help us.
    The Western Church, faithful to the apostolic mission, has not been afraid to plunge into the mire of history. After having been for centuries the only element of moral order and intellectual culture among the barbarous peoples of Europe, it undertook the task not only of the spiritual education of these peoples of independent spirit and uncivilized instincts but also of their material government.
    In devoting itself to this arduous task the Papacy, like St. Nicolas in the legend, thought not so much of the cleanliness of its own appearance as of the urgent needs of mankind. The Eastern Church, on the other hand, with its solitary asceticism and its contemplative mysticism, its withdrawal from political life and from all the social problems which concern mankind as a whole, thought chiefly, like St. Cassian, of reaching Paradise without a single stain on its clothing. 
    The Western Church aimed at employing all its powers, divine and human, for the attainment of a universal goal; the Eastern Church was only concerned with the preservation of its purity. There is the chief point of difference and the fundamental cause of the schism between the two Churches. 
    It is a question of a different ideal of the religious life itself. The religious ideal of the separated Christian East is not false; it is incomplete. In Eastern Christendom for the last thousand years religion has been identified with personal piety, and prayer has been regarded as the one and only religious activity.
    The Western Church, without disparaging individual piety as the true germ of all religion, seeks the development of this germ and its blossoming into a social activity organized for the glory of God and the universal good of mankind. The Eastern prays, the Western prays and labors. Which of the two is right?
    Jesus Christ founded His visible Church not merely to meditate on heaven, but also to labor upon earth and to withstand the gates of hell. He did not send His apostles into the solitude of the desert, but into the world to conquer it and subject it to the Kingdom which is not of this world, and He enjoined upon them not only the innocence of doves but also the wisdom of serpents. If it is merely a question of preserving the purity of the Christian soul, what is the purpose of all the Church’s social organization and of all those sovereign and absolute powers with which Christ has armed her in giving her final authority to bind and to loose on earth as well as in heaven?
    The monks of the holy mountain of Athos, true representatives of the isolated Eastern Church, have for centuries spent all their energies in prayer and the contemplation of the uncreated light of Tabor. They are perfectly right; prayer and the contemplation of uncreated things are essential to the Christian life.
    But can we allow that this occupation of the soul constitutes the whole Christian life? — or that is what we must do if we try to put the Orthodox East, with its peculiar character and special religious tendencies, in the place of the Universal Church. We have in the East a Church at prayer, but where among us is the Church in action, asserting itself as a spiritual force absolutely independent of the powers of this world?
    Where in the East is the Church of the living God, the Church which in every generation legislates for mankind, which establishes and develops the formulation of eternal truth with which to counteract the continually changing formulas of error? Where is the Church which labors to re-mould the whole social life of the nations in accordance with the Christian ideal, and to guide them towards the supreme goal of Creation — free and perfect union with the Creator?
    The advocates of an exclusive asceticism should remember that the perfect Man spent only forty days in the wilderness; those who contemplate the light of Tabor should not forget that that light appeared only once in the earthly life of Christ, Who proved by His own example that true prayer and true contemplation are simply a foundation for the life of action.
    If this great Church, which for centuries has done nothing but pray, has not prayed in vain, she must show herself a living Church, acting, struggling, victorious. But we ourselves must will that it be so. We must above all recognize the insufficiency of our traditional religious ideal, and make a sincere attempt to realize a more complete conception of Christianity. There is no need to invent or create anything new for this purpose. We merely have to restore to our religion its Catholic or universal character by recognizing our oneness with the active part of the Christian world, with the West centralized and organized for a universal activity and possessing all that we lack.
    We are not asked to change our nature as Easterns or to repudiate the specific character of our religious genius.
    We have only to recognize unreservedly the elementary truth that we of the East are but a part of the Universal Church, a part moreover which has not its center within itself, and that therefore it behooves us to restore the link between our individual forces upon the circumference and the great universal center which Providence has placed in the West. There is no question of suppressing our religious and moral individuality but rather of crowning it and inspiring it with a universal and progressive life.
    The whole of our duty to ourselves consists simply in recognizing ourselves for what we are in reality, an organic part of the great body of Christendom, and in affirming our spiritual solidarity with our Western brethren. This moral act of justice and charity would be in itself an immense step forward on our part and the essential condition of all further advance.
    St. Cassian need not become a different person or cease to care about keeping his clothes spotless. He must simply recognize that his comrade has certain important qualities which he himself lacks, and instead of sulking at this energetic worker he must frankly accept him as his companion and guide on the earthly voyage that still lies before them.

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    Full details are now available online for the conference about sanctity, beauty and Catholic artistic expression taking place at St Rita’s Catholic Church in Dallas, Texas, May 19-21.


    It has been organized to showcase the world premiere of a specially commissioned Oratorio about St Rita, A Rose in Winter - the Life of St Rita of Cascia, composed by Frank LaRocca and librettist Matthew Lickona. The performance will be conducted by Dr Alfred Calabrese.

    Scheduled speakers are the composer, librettist and conductor, as well as Dr Ron Rombs and Dr Kathryn Rombs of the University of Dallas, Fr Michael Digrigoria OSA, Fr Joshua Whitfield of St Rita’s Church, and myself. Titles and abstracts of the talks are on the website.

    For more information and register go to stritaconference.com.

    My hope is that they might commission a piece of art work to go with it. Judging from the selection on Google images when you put her name into the search engine, there aren’t many high quality holy images of her around! I like this one, which I found on the internet, but with no mention of who the artist is.

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    Here is a very high quality recording of four pieces of Ambrosian chant, two of which are particular to the Lenten season; once again, brought to my attention by our Milanese correspondent Nicola de’ Grandi.


    The first is an Ingressa, the Ambrosian Rite’s equivalent of the Introit, which is sung, however, without a psalm verse, doxology, or repetition; it is the first in a series of nine which are sung in rotation through the Sundays after Pentecost.


    Incline, o Lord, thy ear, and hear me. Save thy servant, O my God, that hopeth in thee. Have mercy on me, for I have cried to thee all the day, hallelujah. (Psalm 85)

    The second piece is also an Ingressa, that of the Second Sunday of Lent, which in the Ambrosian tradition is called the Sunday of the Samaritan Woman.


    O God, come to my assistance; O Lord, make haste to help me. Let my enemies be confounded and ashamed that seek my soul. (Psalm 69)

    The third piece is one of two litanies which are sung in place of the Gloria on the Sundays of Lent, except Palm Sunday. (It should be noted that the Ambrosian Rite does not have an equivalent of the Roman Kyrie, but does add three Kyrie eleisons to the end of a great number of things, including this litany.) The recording gives the second of these two, known from its first words as Dicamus omnes, which is sung on the Second and Fourth Sundays; the other one is the famous Divinae Pacis, of which we have written several times, which is sung on the First, Third and Fifth Sundays. This recording omits the invocations from V to VIII; click the link above for the translation. Both of these are included in various editions of Cantus selecti, and might very well be used as bidding prayers in the modern Roman Rite.


    The 4th piece is Psalmellus, the equivalent of a Gradual; Oculi mei is the fourth in a series of nine, which are likewise sung in rotation through the Sundays after Pentecost.

    My eyes are ever towards the Lord: for he shall pluck my feet out of the snare. Look thou upon me, and have mercy on me; for I am alone and poor. (Psalm 24)

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    As most people are no doubt aware, the 1962 Missale Romanum does not have weekday lections, except during Lent. This Lenten weekday cycle can be traced back over a thousand years, to the 8th-9th centuries, with the Comes of Alcuin and the Murbach Lectionary as its main sources.

    One might have thought that the post-Vatican II reformers in the Consilium would have taken this ancient series of readings and merely augmented it. They could have kept the vast majority of the weekday readings in their traditional places, and, for the Sundays of Lent, kept the readings from the 1962 Missal as Year A (adding an Old Testament reading), while crafting Years B and C anew from 'neglected' parts/books of the Scriptures.

    However, this is not what happened. Instead, just like the collects, offertory and post-communion prayers [1], the readings for the Lenten ferias were drastically reorganised and changed. The following table visualises just how different the two Missals are in this regard:

    Comparison of Proper of Time for Weekdays in Lent (1962/2002 MR) (PDF)

    In the past few years, there have been a number of books published that compare the proper prayers of the 1962 and 2002 Missals, and that also examine the Consilium’s process of reforming the Ordo Missae [2], although this scholarly work is only just beginning. However, in terms of comparing the readings of the two Missals, and looking in more detail at the work of Group 11 of the Consilium (who were responsible for designing the lectionary of the Ordinary Form), this work has yet to properly begin. The table above is provided in part to facilitate this sort of work. It would be interesting to see whether some of the observations made by, for example, Pristas about the Lenten collects also hold for the reform of the Lenten readings, as well as how Sacrosanctum Concilium 109-110 may have affected their reform.

    NOTES

    [1] For a detailed comparison of the 1962 and 1970/2002 Lenten collects, see Lauren Pristas, The Collects of the Roman Missals: A Comparative Study of the Sundays in Proper Seasons before and after the Second Vatican Council (London: Bloomsbury, 2013).

    [2] As well as the aforementioned work of Pristas, there is also Patrick Regan's Advent to Pentecost: Comparing the Seasons in the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite (Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2012). I found Regan’s book a little disappointing, though; I hope to explain why in a future post. Some direct comparisons of the 2002 MR post-communion prayers with their sources (for the Proper of Time and Proper of Saints) are available from my blog Lectionary Study Aids. Maurizio Barba’s work La riforma conciliare dell’« Ordo Missae » (Rome: Centro Liturgico Vincenziano, 2008, 2nd edn) reproduces the (Latin) minutes of Group 10 of the Consilium, who were in charge of the reform of the Order of Mass, and is thus absolutely vital reading for those who want to know more about that process. 

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