4 November, Mass of Saint Charles Borromeo, Bishop

| | Comments (0)


The Collect for today's memorial of Saint Charles Borromeo contains an extraordinary phrase. We ask that the Church, being ceaselessly renewed, and thus conformed to the image of Christ, may show forth His Face to the world: Christi se imagini conformans, ipsius vultum mundo valeat ostendere.


I will visit my sheep,
and I will set up one shepherd over them
and he shall feed them,
and I the Lord will be their God (cf. Ez 34:11, 23-24).


Preserve in your people, we beseech you, Lord,
the spirit with which you filled the bishop Saint Charles;
that the Church may be ceaselessly renewed,
and in conforming herself to the image of Christ,
be able to show his face to the world.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever.


That the Church in Milan and throughout the world
may rejoice in the holiness of Saint Charles,
and be graced in our day with bishops of his stature:
men of humility, zeal, and ceaseless prayer,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

That the leaders of nations
may persevere in the pursuit of peace,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

That the poor may find relief with dignity;
that the sick and the dying may not lose hope;
and that those struggling with temptations may be speedily delivered,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

That, like Saint Paul,
we may burn with desire to be with Christ
and, like Saint Charles,
demonstrate an effective and generous love of the Church,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.


Almighty and ever-living God
who, by the humility and wisdom of Saint Charles,
renewed the Church of Milan
and demonstrated the fruits of the Council of Trent
in a wonderful flowering of purity and holiness,
grant us, we beseech you,
a willing obedience to the voice of the Spirit
in the communion of a Church unchanging in her faith
and ever open to reform.
Through Christ our Lord.


I have found David my servant,
with my holy oil I have anointed him:
for my hand shall help him,
and my arm shall strengthen him (Ps 88:21–22).


Look, O Lord, upon the gifts set forth upon your altars
in memory of Saint Charles
and, by the power of this sacrifice,
grant that as you raised him up
by the watchful care of his flock and the splendour of his virtues,
we too may abound in the unfeigned fruits of good works.
Through Christ our Lord.


It is truly right and just, our duty and our salvation,
always and everywhere to give you thanks,
Lord, holy Father, almighty and eternal God,
in this commemoration of your bishop Saint Charles
whose ministry you have so gloriously rewarded.

You gave him to the Church as a vigilant pastor,
a lamp shining your light in the darkness of this world,
a priest fired by the immensity of Christ’s love;
a mirror of strength, a pattern of justice for the flock.

By your generous gift he led your sheep
with diligent care safely to the sheepfold,
and in days of trial an danger
sustained them with zeal and love.

As we recall with admiration the life and works of this generous bishop,
we exult to sing your greatness
and with all the creatures of heaven
who rejoice in the contemplation of your face,
we raise the hymn of ceaseless praise:


Blessed is that servant whom the Lord when he comes
and knocks at the door, shall find watching (cf. Lk 12:36-37).


May the sacred mysteries we have received, O Lord,
grace us with that strength of soul
which made Saint Charles faithful in his ministry
and fervent in charity.
Through Christ our Lord.

Leave a comment

About Dom Mark

Dom Mark Daniel Kirby is Conventual Prior of Silverstream Priory in Stamullen, County Meath, Ireland. The ecclesial mandate of his Benedictine community is the adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar in a spirit of reparation, and in intercession for the sanctification of priests.

Donations for Silverstream Priory