Saturday, June 30, 2012

Feast of the Most Precious Blood, July 1

In the 1962 Roman Calendar (but not the 1962 Benedictine calendar), July 1 marks the Feast of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, a first class feast, so with I Vespers of the feast.

The feast has its origins in the sixteenth century, but was extended to the universal Church in 1849, to recognition of the liberation of Rome.

It was originally always celebrated on the first Sunday in July; Pope St Pius X shifted it to July 1 as part of his clean out of feasts fixed for Sundays. 

Pope John XXIII went so far as to write an encyclical promoting devotion to the feast in 1960, and as a particularly liturgical devotion, one might have expected to escape the wreckovaters, but alas, it was abolished altogether in the 1969 calendar on the grounds that it duplicated other Solemnities (though it still exists as a votive mass).  One can't help suspecting, however, that the real reason those 1960s revolutionaries baulked at it was the perceived 'triumphalism' in its association with the return to the Papal States to their proper ruler...

It was in the older Benedictine calendar, so those with an Antiphonale Monasticum (or older form of the Breviary) will find the texts there.  Others wishing to say the Office of the feast could utilise the antiphons and proper texts from the Divinum Officium website, and apply them to the Sunday festal psalms.

You might want also to consider saying the litany of the Most Precious Blood, traditionally said each day during July.