Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Giving thanks for the year past: Te Deum Laudamus

There is a plenary indulgence to be gained if you participate in the public recitation of the Te Deum as thanksgiving on the last day of the year.  If said privately, it is a partial indulgence.  You can find the text here.

Remember too, that there is another plenary indulgence to be gained (under the normal conditions) for the public recitation of the Veni Creator on the first day of January.

Octave of the Nativity (aka Circumcision of Our Lord aka Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God)

New Year's Day is of course the Octave Day of Christmas.

At Matins in the Benedictine Office the readings are as follows:

Nocturn I: Romans 4:1-17
Nocturn II: Sermon of Pope St Leo
Nocturn III: Homily of St Ambrose
Gospel: Luke 2:21

Here are the third Nocturn readings:

(Reading 9): So the Child is circumcised. This is the Child of Whom it is said Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given. Made under the law to redeem them that were under the law. To present Him to the Lord.  In my Commentary on Isaiah I have already explained what is meant by being presented to the Lord in Jerusalem, and therefore I will not enter into the subject again. He that is circumcised in heart gaineth the protection of God, for the eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous.

(Reading 10): Ye will see that as all the ceremonies of the old law were types of realities in the new, so the circumcision of the body signified the cleansing of the heart from the guilt of sin.  But since the body and mind of man remain yet infected with a proneness' to sin, the circumcision of the eighth day is also a type of that complete cleansing from sin which we shall have at the resurrection. This ceremony was also performed in obedience to the commandment of God: Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy unto the Lord. These words were written with especial reference to the delivery of the Blessed Virgin.

(Reading 11): Truly He That opened her womb was holy, for He was altogether without spot, and we may gather that the law was written specially for Him from the words of the Angel That Holy Thing Which shall be born of thee, shall be called the Son of God.Among all that are born of women the Lord Jesus Christ stood alone in holiness. Fresh from His immaculate Birth, He felt no contagion from human corruption, and His heavenly Majesty drove it away.

(Reading 12): If we are to follow the letter and say that every male that openeth the womb is holy, how shall we explain that so many have been unrighteous? Was Ahab holy? Were the false prophets holy? Were they holy on whom Elijah justly called down fire from heaven? But He to Whom the sacred commandment of the law of God is mystically directed is the Holy One of Israel; Who also alone hath opened the secret womb of His holy Virgin-bride the Church, filling her with a sinless fruitfulness to give birth to Christian souls.

No comments: