Sunday, March 12, 2017

Dominica secunda in Quadragesima: Domine, bonum est nos hic esse

The Second Sunday in Lent, not of, as a pukka Catholic reminded me last week.
  • Mass: Reminiscere miserationum tuarum, Domine. Collect, epistle, gospel (we love the Transfiguration so much we commemorate it twice), and propers.
    Deus, qui conspicis omni nos virtute destitui: interius exteriusque custodi; ut ab omnibus adversitatibus muniamur in corpore, et a pravis cogitationibus mundemur in mente. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum, filium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.
  • Classic Book of Common Prayer collect and epistle for this Mass.
    Almighty God, who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves; Keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
    Cranmer threw a word into the collect, not changing the meaning (the real collect happens not to say omnipotens), and shortened the ending formula (usually Western collects are to the Father, through the Son (cf. Ferrara-Florence!), and in the unity of the Holy Ghost, "world without end." Why did he use a different gospel, Sarum or his own idea? (The BCP is not Sarum in English; that's a myth about Anglicanism.)
    We beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: that no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.
  • The Catholic generation gap. Good except the hippies didn't start the Sixties' corruption in the church; they didn't care about the church. It was their parents' generation's naïveté about progress, the Zeitgeist of the space age. After all, John XXIII announced the council in 1959. "Streamline the church like a jet plane for a new age and it will get even better." Which made churchmen sitting ducks for the Age of Aquarius. Their failure (my archdiocese's version) imitates mainline Protestantism's; the people leave and the churchmen think it's because they aren't being liberal enough! And the church can't really split; there's only one church. (Born Orthodox are estranged from us; I don't believe in them as a separate church because they make no sense as such.) Either you're in the church or not. Our teachings are online for all to read; if you knowingly say no to them, you're out. Within the church, within authentic Catholicism, there are cultures and schools of spirituality and even theological speculation (anything that's not doctrine is open to debate) that don't necessarily get along. That's what our "worship war" should be; keep the old forms but fine if you want to experiment as long as Benedict XVI's English text reform is American Catholics' baseline.
  • Catholic high churchmen's problems/frustrations: As with other things, when something gets your hopes up then blam. You're combing the antiques malls and find, offered for a C-note, a two-volume 1960 (the one that's easiest to use) Roman Breviary in good shape... but it's not the Vulgate Latin psalter; it's Pius XII's rewritten one that nobody likes. Of course you know to check.


  1. "shortened the ending formula"

    Not really. If you look in the 1549 book the collect endings are a mess. Some have the full ending written out. Others have a shortened form. Some have no ending at all. There may or may not be an Amen after any of these variants.

    As it happens, this particular one ends "through Jesus Christ &c." - the &c. indicating that what is intended (in all cases) is the full ending. The variations are plainly of no significance. Adding the full ending was such an obvious and automatic thing that Cranmer probably didn't even notice he was being inconsistent.

    There was an attempt to tidy things up in 1662, but as this consisted in simply adding Amen to all collects where it was missing it gave the impression that those with the short formula were meant to end there. No doubt the Interregnum didn't help - many people would have forgotten the unwritten rule of adding the full ending.

  2. RE: The Catholic generaton gap

    The only way I can describe PJ23's call for the 2nd Vatican Council is that one day after he arose from his bed he had a BRAIN FART. I will not venerate him.


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