Ellen M. Donovan, the sister of Sister Mary Xavier of the Monastery of the Glorious Cross, died on September 7th. Today I offered Holy Mass for the repose of her soul. Every time I sing the sublime First Preface of the Dead, I thrill to the words: Tuis enim fidelibus, Domine, vita mutatur, non tollitur. There is in the Church’s Requiem Mass a gentle realism in the face of death and a consolation found nowhere else.
The life of those who are faithful to you, Lord,
is but changed, not ended;
and when their earthly dwelling-place decays,
an eternal home is made ready in heaven.
GR and GS
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord,
and let the radiance of your light shine forever upon them (cf. 2 Es 2:35).
V. To you our praise is due in Zion, O God.
To you we pay our vows, you who hear our prayer;
to you all flesh will come (Ps 64:2-3).