Liturgical Texts: July 2008 Archives

Turn On Us Thy Healing Face

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Two strophes from this morning's hymn at Lauds seemed to come to life as I sang them in the sunlight of this new Day of the Lord:

Iesu, labantes respice
et nos videndo corrige;
si respicis, lapsus cadunt
fletuque culpa solvitur.

Tu, lux, refulge sensibus
mentisque somnum discute;
te nostra vox primum sonet,
et vota solvamus tibi.

The Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman translates:

Jesu, Master! when we sin,
Turn on us Thy healing Face;
It will melt the offence within
Into penitential grace.

Beam on our bewildered mind,
Till its dreamy shadows flee;
Stones cry out where Thou hast shined,
Jesu! musical with Thee.

Praying Audibly

Diocesan priests, deacons, and others who, for one reason or another, pray the Hours alone will find that if they recite or chant them audibly, respecting the rhythm and pauses of choral prayer, the sacred texts more easily descend into the heart. There one begins to experience the sacramental quality of the Divine Office; it is, in fact, a holy communion with the prayer of the ascended and risen Christ, our Eternal High Priest, to the Father.

With the Body

Whenever possible, even in private recitation, adopt the traditional bodily attitudes and gestures of the Divine Office: standing, sitting, kneeling, bowing, and signing oneself with the Cross. Saint Benedict enjoined those of his monks who found themselves far from the oratory of the monastery at the hour of prayer to perform the Work of God "on bended knee", that is, without omitting the body's tribute to the Divine Majesty (RSB 50).

In a Sacred Space

In this age of locked churches and the decline of parish-based neighbourhoods, it is not always possible to pray in the presence of the Most Holy Sacrament. A domestic oratory, even if it is no more than a corner in one's apartment or an empty closet refreshed with a coat of paint, is a permanent invitation to return to prayer faithfully. The soul finds peace in repairing to a space of beauty set aside for the glory of God. There, by means of sacred images, the "Healing Face" of Our Lord shines into the soul, while the Mother of God, the Angels and the saints offer the comfort of a familiar presence.

For the Pauline Year

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I celebrated the beautiful Votive Mass of Saint Paul this morning. One of my resolutions for the Pauline Year is to offer the Votive Mass of Saint Paul once a week whenever the rubrics permit it. The Propers for this Mass are found in the Missale Romanum, Editio Typica Tertia, 2002, page 1185. I would be curious to know how many of my brother priests will also be celebrating the Votive Mass of Saint Paul during this special year of grace.


Scio cui credidi, et certus sum quia potens est
depositum meum servare in illum diem iustus iudex.

He, to whom I have given my confidence, is no stranger to me,
and I am fully persuaded that he has the means to keep my pledge safe,
until that day comes, the Lord, that Judge.
(2 Timothy 1, 12; 4, 8)


Domine Deus, qui beatum Paulum apostolum
ad praedicandum Evangelium mirabiliter designasti,
da fide mundum universum imbui,
quam ipse coram regibus gentibusque portavit
ut iugiter Ecclesia tua capiat augmentum.

Lord God, who, in a wonderful way, set apart the blessed Apostle Paul
for the preaching of the Gospel,
grant that the entire world may be imbued with the faith,
which he carried into the presence of kings and of peoples,
so that Your Church may ceaselessly increase.

Prayer Over the Oblations

Illo nos, quaesumus, Domine, divina tractantes,
fidei lumine Spiritus perfundat,
quo beatum Paulum apostolum
ad gloriae tuae propagationem collustravit.

As we handle these divine mysteries, O Lord,
we beseech You that the Holy Spirit may pour forth the light of faith
by which He illumined the blessed Apostle Paul
so as to spread Your glory.

Preface of the Apostles I

Communion Antiphon

In fide vivo Filii Dei, qui dilexit me,
et tradidit semetipsum pro me.

My real life is the faith I have in the Son of God,
who loved me, and gave Himself for me.
(Galatians 2, 20)


Corporis et Sanguinis Filii tui, Domine,
communione refectis,
concede, ut ipse Christus sit nobis vivere,
nihilque ab eius nos separet caritate
et, beato monente Apostolo,
in dilectione cum fratribus ambulemus.

Now that we are refreshed, O Lord,
by the communion of the Body and Blood of Your Son,
grant that our life may be Christ Himself,
that nothing may separate us from His charity,
and that, following the teaching of the Apostle,
we may walk with our brethren in love.

14th Sunday of the Year A

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O God, who by the abasement of Your Son
have lifted up a fallen world;
grant to Your faithful a holy gladness,
so that having delivered us out of the servitude of sin,
You may give us to taste fully of joys that never end.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever.

General Intercessions

That, filled with the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead, the Church in East and West may be a place of comfort for the little and the poor,
and an oasis of rest for every burdened and weary soul,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

That world leaders
may seek peace for the nations in the Gospel of the Humble Christ,
and so govern with the wisdom that comes from above,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

That the falling, the bowed down,
and those who are burdened with the cares of life
may open the ear of their hearts
to the invitation of the meek and humble Christ Who,
even today, says, “Come to Me,”
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

That we, having received
the revelation of mysteries hidden from the learned and the clever,
may rejoice in the arrival of the King of glory
who comes to us hidden beneath the sacramental veils,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

Collect at the General Intercessions

Almighty and ever-living God,
Who gave joy to Zion and comfort to Jerusalem (Za 9:9)
in the arrival of Your Son Jesus Christ,
gentle and humble in heart (Mt 11:29);
pour forth, we beseech you, His Spirit into our hearts (cf., Rom 8:9)
that, drawn to Him who calls us to Himself (cf., Mt 11:28),
we may lay aside every heavy burden and, entering into His rest (cf. Mt 1128),
glory in the poverty and lowliness of the King (cf. Za 9,9)
even as we confess the triumph of His victory over death.
Who is Lord forever and ever.

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