Yet another splendid morning! There should be celebrated the Mass Salve sancta Parens (Introibo) this morning, today being the Commemoration of Our Lady on Saturday, but I suspect that Saint-Eugène's streaming folks are taking the day off. As indeed they are, according to the YouTube page.
I could very easily have put the fan on last night but didn't. The heater hasn't come on for almost 48 hours at this point. Still half-suspect a snowfall one of these days.
The mages predict 80 degrees F. today. Last evening's performance at Beall Hall of Bononcini's San Nicola di Bari evidently enjoyed a live audience-- presumably such participants in the Musicking Conference and the associated conference of the Society for Seventeenth Century Music as were actually on campus. The depths of idiocy were indeed plumbed so far as the plague-nonsense goes; I thought that the masks being worn by the artists on stage were utterly ridiculous.
I find out this morning, as I listen to the oratorio from the beginning (I missed most of half an hour or so fussing about to get to the live-stream), that the plaguers' regime required the interruption of the performance twice instead of at its appointed halfway mark. At the end of the first part, the audience had to travel to an adjoining room where they (and we) viewed the second part that had been recorded some days previously. At the conclusion of the second part, the audience returned to the aula and the third part commenced with the artists again performing on stage.
You could've knocked me down with a feather when I heard Mark Vanscheeuwijck, the conference grand panjandrum, explain all of it; evidently a late development. As stupid, idiotic, and manipulative as this was, I have to admit that I didn't tell the difference between the two live parts and the recorded second part. I hope they brought in the enormous air blowers from Knight Stadium to rid Beall Hall of the particulates breathed out by all those two or three dozen people. Time for Sext.
Post Nonam. Received my copy of Philip Gröning's Into Great Silence today. Have never watched it and, quite honestly, I don't know if I will; I must keep reminding myself that it is the Grande Chartreuse and not N., the house where I was a conversus. And, never having watched a DVD on either of these laptops, it occurs to me that I'm not sure that either or both play DVDs, ha. The 'extras' DVD include a 53 minute excerpt of the Night Office; I am interested to see if that is the same 53 minutes I have the audio of.
Dom Prosper's essay for today, the Saturday in the 1st week post Octavam Paschae, tomorrow being, therefore, the 3rd Sunday of Easter.
The Saturday brings us back to Mary. Let us again contemplate her prerogatives; and yet, whilst so doing, let us still keep our thoughts on Holy Church, which has been the subject of our meditations during this week. Let us, today, consider the relations existing between Mary and the Church: they will make us the better understand these two Mothers of mankind. Before taking possession of the Church, which was to be proclaimed before all nations on the day of Pentecost, the Man-God made a worthy prelude to this kingly possession by uniting himself with Her, who is so deservedly styled the Mother and representative of the human race.
This was Mary. Of the family of David, Abraham and Sem; immaculate, from the first moment of her existence, as were our First Parents when they came from their Creator's hands; and destined for the grandest honour which could be conferred on a mere creature; Mary was, during her sojourn here on earth, the inheritance and co-operatrix of the Incarnate Word: she was the Mother of all the living. She, in her single person was what the Church, collectively, has been from the day of its foundation.
Her office of Mother of God surpasses all her other glories; still, we must not overlook, but, on the contrary, admire and love them. Mary was the first creature that fully corresponded with the intentions which induced the Son of God to come down from heaven. He found in her the most lively faith, the firmest hope, and the most fervent love. Never had human nature, perfected by grace, offered to God an object so worthy of his acceptance. Before celebrating his union with the human race, as its Shepherd, Jesus was the Shepherd of this single sheep, whose merits and dignity surpass those of the rest of mankind, even supposing it to have been always, and in all things, faithful to its God. Mary, therefore, represented the Christian Church, before it existed in itself. The Son of God found in her, not only a Mother, but the faithful worshipper of his Divinity from the first moment of his Incarnation. We saw, on Holy Saturday, how Mary's faith withstood the test of Calvary and the Tomb, and how this faith, which never faltered, kept alive on the earth the light which was never to be quenched, and which was soon to be confided to the collective Church, whose mission was to win over all nations to the Divine Shepherd.
It was not Jesus' will that his Blessed Mother should exercise a visible and outward apostolate, save in a limited degree. Besides, he was not to leave her here till the end of time. But, just in the same way as, from the day of his Ascension, he made his Church co-operate with him in all that he does for his elect, so likewise did he will, during his mortal life, that Mary should have her share in all the works done by him for our salvation. She, whose formal consent had been required before the Eternal Word took Flesh in her womb, was present, as we have already seen, at the foot of the Cross, in order that she, as a creature, might offer Him, who offered himself as God, our Redeemer. The Mother's sacrifice blended with that of the Son, and this raised her up to a degree of merit, which the human mind could never calculate. Thus it is, though in a less perfect manner, the Church unites herself, in unity of oblation, with her Divine Spouse, in the Sacrifice of the Altar. It was to be on the day of Pentecost that the Church's maternity would be proclaimed to the world; Mary was invested with the office of Mother of men, as Jesus was hanging upon his Cross. When his Side was opened with the Spear, that the Church born from the Water and Blood of Redemption, might come forth, Mary was there to receive into her arms this future mother, whom she had hitherto so fully re presented.
In a few days, we shall behold Mary in the Cenacle; the Holy Ghost will enrich her with new gifts, and we shall have to study her mission in the early Church. Let us close the considerations we have been making today by drawing a parallel between our two Mothers, who, though one is so far above the other in dignity, are nevertheless closely united to each other. Our heavenly Mother, who is also the Mother of Jesus, is ever assisting our earthly Mother, the Church, with heavenly aid. Mary exercises over her, in each of her existences-- Militant, Suffering, or Triumphant-- an influence of power and love. She procures to the Church the victories she wins; she enables her to go through the tribulations and trials which beset her path. The children of one are children of the other; both have a share in giving us spiritual birth, one, the 'Mother of divine grace', by her all-powerful prayers; the other, by the Word of God and Holy Baptism. If, when we depart this life, our admission to the beatific vision is to be retarded on account of our sins, and our souls are to descend to the abode of Purgatory, the suffrages of our earthly Mother will follow us, and alleviate or shorten our sufferings; but our heavenly Mother will do still more for us during that period of expiation, so awful and yet so just. In heaven, the elect are rejoiced at the sight of the Church Triumphant, though she be still Militant on earth: and who can describe the joy these happy children must feel at seeing the glory of the Mother that begot them in Christ? But with how much gladder ecstacy must not these same citizens of heaven gaze upon Mary, that other Mother of theirs, who was their Star on the stormy sea of life, who never ceased to watch over them with most loving care, who procured them countless aids to salvation, and who, when they entered heaven, received them into those same maternal arms, which heretofore carried the Divine Fruit of her womb, that First-Born whose Brothers and Joint-Heirs we are all called to be!
As long as we dwell in this vale of tears, which is now being turned into a paradise by the presence of our Risen Jesus, let us, sometimes, think of Mary's joys. Last Saturday, we borrowed a Hymn from the ancient Churches of Germany, in order to celebrate her Seven Joys; let us do the same today. Here follows the sequence or prose Gaude Virgo, stella maris, which I shall let you, pious reader, click open for yourself.
It is also the feast of Saint Kateri (17th century), of Saint Robert (12th century), and of Saint Pantagathus (6th century).
V. Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum. R. Deo grátias.
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