Traditional Mass

Friday, December 11, 2015


Pope and Confessor



The Spaniard Damasus was pope from 366 to 384. During his reign he had to contend with an antipope at Rome, schism at Antioch, Constantinople, and Sardinia, and Arian heresy over the whole Empire. St. Jerome, whom he commissioned to prepare the Vulgatetranslation of the Bible, calls him "an incomparable person, learned in the Scriptures, a virgin doctor of the virgin Church, who loved chastity and heard its praise with pleasure." Pope Damasus had great veneration for the Christian martyrs, wrote many of the epitaphs for their tombs, and out of humility, would not allow himself to be buried among his martyred predecessors.

O Eternal Shepherd, who appointed blessed Damasus shepherd of the whole Church, let the prayers of this confessor and supreme pontiff move You to look with favor upon Your flock and to keep it under Your continual protection. Through Our Lord . . .

 Stir up our hearts, O Lord, to prepare the ways of Your only-begotten Son, so that through His coming we may be able to serve You with purified minds.
Who livest and reignest with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end.
R. Amen

Lesson from the first letter of St Peter the Apostle
1 Pet. 5:1-4, 10-11.
Beloved: I exhort the presbyters among you - I, your fellow presbyter and witness of the sufferings of Christ, the partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed in time to come - tend the flock of God which is among you, governing not under constraint, but willingly, according to God; nor yet for the sake of base gain, but eagerly; nor yet as lording it over your charges, but becoming from the heart a pattern to the flock. And when the Prince of the shepherds appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. But the God of all grace, Who has called us unto His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will Himself, after we have suffered a little while, perfect, strengthen and establish us. To Him is the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Ps 106:32, 31.
Let them extol him in the assembly of the people and praise him in the council of the elders.
V. Let them give thanks to the Lord for His kindness and His wondrous deeds to the children of men. Alleluia, alleluia.
Matt 16:18
You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My Church. Alleluia.

Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to Matthew
R. Glory be to Thee, O Lord.
Matt. 16:13-19
At that time, Jesus, having come into the district of Caesarea Philippi, began to ask His disciples, saying, "Who do men say the Son of Man is?" But they said, Some say, John the Baptist; and others, Elias; and others, Jeremia, or one of the prophets. He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Then Jesus answered and said, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father in heaven. And I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

We have offered our gifts to You, O Lord. Let Your light graciously shine upon Your Church, so that this flock may everywhere prosper, and its pastors, under Your guidance, may be truly pleasing to You. Through Our Lord . . .

 Be appeased, we beseech You, O Lord, by the prayers and offerings of our human frailty, and where the support of our own merits is lacking, come to our assistance with Your protection.
Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.
R. Amen.

O Lord, govern the Church, which You have been pleased to nourish with Your heavenly Food. Guide her by Your powerful direction, so that she may enjoy greater freedom and remain unshaken in the fullness of faith. Through Our Lord . . .

We who have been refreshed by the food of spiritual nourishment, humbly beseech You, O Lord, that through partaking of this sacrament You will teach us to disdain the things of earth and love those of heaven.
Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.
R. Amen.


Beato Angelico, Giovanni da Fiesole, Guido di ...Image via Wikipedia
"There was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army praising God." St. Luke, 2: 13.

Today we honor Mary as Queen of the Angels. As our thoughts fly up to heaven, we pass by all the nine choirs of angels up to the very throne of God, to behold the Queen of all these heavenly spirits. We can call Our Lady, Queen of the Angels, because she was more favored by God than all the angels, and she can and really does do more for our souls than the heavenly spirits could ever do. These spirits are the servants of God; but Our Blessed Lady is the Daughter of God the Father, Mother of God the Son, and Spouse of God the Holy Spirit. All through her life we see the angels about our Blessed Mother:

1. We see the Archangel Gabriel announcing to the Blessed Virgin that she is to be the Mother of God. This Archangel salutes her, greets her, honors her, because he realized that Mary was his Queen.

2. At Bethlehem we hear the angels announce the birth of Jesus, the Son of God in a stable. "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men of good will." There was a multitude of the heavenly army praising God, and honoring their Queen, even though she was a humble, simple Jewish Mother. These heavenly messengers came from the throne of God to tell the world that this Child was really the Son of God.

3. Again the angels enter Our Lady's life when they warned St. Joseph to take the Child and flee into Egypt. What is the power of the sword, when the angels of God spread their wings to protect the Infant Son of God? The angels protected the Holy Family as they made that perilous, tedious trip to a foriegn land, and also during their sojourn there.

4. After the Death and Resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ, the angels were at the tomb. One of them rolled away the stone and then announced: "Do not be afraid; for I know that you seek Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come and see the place where the Lord was laid." (Matt. 28: 5) They helped Mother Mary to see her risen Son.

5. Finally, on Ascension day two angels addressed the disciples, with Our Lady accompanying them, as they looked at the departing Master: "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up to heaven? This Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven, shall come in the same way as you have seen Him going up to heaven." (Acts 1:11)

6. According to an unquestionable tradition of Mother Church, Our Lady was taken into heaven by the hands of angels. Thus, all through her life messengers of the Almighty waited upon her, honored her, and brought her messages. Prayer and devotion to Our Lady, Queen of Angels, and all the choirs of angels throughout our life on earth and especially in death, gives us hope that we too will be assisted into heaven by their hands.

[Adapted from a sermon by Rt. Rev. Arthur Tonne, c/o Didde Printing Co.]