Sunday, February 12, 2017

The Sunday called Septuagesima

Septuagesima Sunday, so named because it's 70 days until Easter: the switch to purple, the run-up to Lent, is on. "Nice church but its clothes don't match." Mixed liturgical signals. My parish's high altar for the 'Gesimas as most Masses are Novus Ordo (we always use the altar rail); only mine, the mid-morning Sung Mass, is Tridentine. Fr. McKale's sermon was on the epistle: blessed calmness. "Every one that striveth for the mastery refraineth himself from all things." Let temptations to resentment and vengeance pass over you like clouds.

Here are the collect, epistle, and gospel in Anglican English. Apparently Cranmer didn't object to Catholic doctrine in them so he kept and translated them.

Mass (its "name" is the first line of the Introit): Circumdederunt me gemitus mortus, dolores inferni circumdederunt me: et in tribulatione mea invocavi Dominum, et exaudivit de templo sancto suo vocem meam. The pains of hell came about me : the snares of death overtook me. In my trouble I will call upon the Lord : and complain unto my God. So shall he hear my voice out of his holy temple.

Collect: Preces pópuli tui, quǽsumus, Dómine, cleménter exáudi: ut, qui juste pro peccátis nostris afflígimur, pro tui nóminis glória misericórditer liberémur. Per Dóminum nostrum Jesum Christum, Fílium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitáte Spíritus Sancti, Deus, per ómnia sǽcula sæculórum. Amen.

O Lord, we beseech thee favourably to hear the prayers of thy people; that we, who are justly punished for our offences, may be mercifully delivered by thy goodness, for the glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

The Epistle: 1 Cor. 9. 24.
Brethren: Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a cast-away. [...] I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and did all eat the same spiritual meat; and did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased.

The Gospel: St. Matth. 20. 1.
At that time Jesus spake to His disciples this parable: The kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive. So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first. And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny. But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good? So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.


  1. Even when I was myself a RC traditionalist, I never quite understood the fascination with it. Three more weeks of violet - so what? At least in the old form there was the distinction in vestiture for solemn Mass. As Roman Catholics are totally averse to any kind of Office, what's the point? And since Roman Catholics don't fast, with the exception (for very few of them) on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, again what's the point? Or is this another one of those traddie shibboleths along the lines of pre-Vatican II = good, post Vatican II = bad?

    1. Well, I guess we can't do anything right!

      Three more weeks of violet - so what?

      Sure; it's not necessary.

      As Roman Catholics are totally averse to any kind of Office, what's the point?

      Definitely a shortcoming of modern Catholic life, but priests long have not been fond of the breviary, and Sunday-night church (Second Vespers) was actually required at one time in the parishes. The movies, radio, and TV killed it off.

      Roman Catholics don't fast, with the exception (for very few of them) on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.

      I follow the modern Roman Rite rules except I don't eat meat on Fridays year round and try to keep the midnight Communion fast. Jesus said "When you fast..." but I can't handle extreme fasting and don't apologize for that. I'm thankful that the church's rules are merciful.

      ...pre-Vatican II = good, post Vatican II = bad?

      Pretty much. That and the names (Septuagesima, etc.) are pretty.


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