Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Who Is Dominican Tertiary?

In case anyone out there is wondering, I am an American man, living in the United States.  I am married and have a family.  I am in the 45 - 55 year old age range.  I have been a Roman Catholic all my life, and I am completely loyal to the Magisterium of the Church, and our Holy Father Pope Francis.  I am also a novice in the Lay Fraternity of St. Dominic (Dominican Third Order).

Though my parents did the best job they could, during the turbulent 70's and 80's, to raise me Catholic,  I was not a truly "practicing" Catholic until about 2000.   Around that time a very dear friend of mine was trying to draw me closer to Christ and the Church, something my father had also been attempting for a number of years.  Their efforts were supplemented that year by my encounter with a Traditionalist priest, who introduced me to both the Traditional Mass, and St. Thomas Aquinas.  The rest, as they say, is history.

Friday, December 26, 2014

1967 Dominican Breviary On-Line

As has been reported over at New Liturgical Movement and Dominican Liturgy, the good folks at Corpus Christi Watershed, have posted a scan of Volume II of the 1967 English translation of the 1962 Breviarium Iuxta ritum sacri ordinis praedicatorum, and it is available as a pdf download.  This is the edition that I use daily when praying the office.

This edition was a project of the Irish Dominican Province, and was issued with the approbation of Fr. Aniceto Fernandez, O.P., who was Master General of the Order of Preachers during the tumultuous period from 1962 - 1974.  It was published in 1967 by St. Savrour's Press, Dublin, Ireland.  The translation of elements of the Old Testament are a combination of those from the Douay and the Revised Standard Version.  The psalm translation is that of the Grail edition.  Being issued after the close of Vatican Council II, the editors made the decision to remove the Office of Prime, which had been suppressed by the conciliar Constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

December 25: The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ, I Class

. Puer natus est nobis.  
. To us a child is born.  
. Et filius datus est nobis.
. To us a son is given.

(Versicle before Lauds)

Today, in the 1962 Dominican Rite Calendar, we celebrate the Feast of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ.  The feast is 1st Class, with a 2nd Class octave.  The Festive Office is prayed. with everything being taken from the Proper of the Season for this day.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

December 24: Vigil of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, I Class

Tomorrow the transgression of the earth will be blotted out.  And the Savior of the world will reign over us.  (Versicle before Lauds for the Vigil of the Nativity).

Today, in the 1962 Dominican Rite Calendar, we celebrate the Vigil of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ.  The feast is 1st Class so the Festive Office is prayed.  At Pretiosa, we read the Martyrology for December 25:

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

December 23: O Emmanuel

At Vespers on these days, we pray one of the "O" antiphons at the Magnificat.  Today, December 23, the antiphon is "O Emmanuel":

O Emmanuel, Rex et légifer noster, exspectátio Géntium, et Salvátor eárum: veni ad salvándum nos, Dómine Deus noster.
O Emmanuel, King and Lawgiver, the one longed for by the nations, their Savior; come and save us, Lord our God.

From "Liturgical Meditations for the Entire Year" by the Sisters of St. Dominic, Adrian, MI (B. Herder, 1960):

In her last great invocation to the King-Messiah, the Church calls Him by the greatest and holiest of His titles:  Emmanuel, God with us.  Looking to the throne of the Most High, she acknowledges His eternal royalty and infinite dominion.  With adoration, humility, and confidence she pleads for His coming.

As we go about our final preparations fo the visit of our divine Lord, let us repeat often in the depths of our soul His name:  Emmanuel.  Only by continual and reverent meditation upon His glorious title can we grasp its significance:  God with us.  To redeem our wretchedness and purchase forgiveness of our sins, the eternal Son of God becomes out brother, clothes Himself in our nature, assumes the pains, humiliations, and necessities of our humanity.

Monday, December 22, 2014

December 22: The Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Comm.

Happy Anniversary to the Order of Preachers!

I truly enjoy this feast.  As a member of the Order, it brings me great joy to know that I am part of a family that is nearly 800 years old, and which has been endowed by almighty God with so many holy men and women.  It is also a great joy to me that there is a specific date which serves as the birthday, so to speak, for the Order.  The ferial Office for Advent is prayed, and a commemoration of the feast is made at Lauds only.

December 22: O Rex Géntium

At Vespers on these days, we pray one of the "O" antiphons at the Magnificat.  Today, December 22, the antiphon is "O Rex Gentium":

O Rex Géntium, * et desiderátus eárum, lapisque angularis, qui facis utráque unum: veni, et salva hóminem, quem de limo formásti.
O King and treasure of the nations, the corner-stone that makes the two into one; come and save man whom you fashioned from dust.

From "Liturgical Meditations for the Entire Year" by the Sisters of St. Dominic, Adrian, MI (B. Herder, 1960):

Today’s liturgy calls upon the Holy One of Israel, desired of all nations, to come and rescue the human race.  Formed of clay and corrupted by sin, man is in need of a Savior.  From the heights of heaven there comes to him the Lord of the world, the King of nations, the eternal Son of God.

Without a keen sense of our own wretchedness we shall fail to appreciate the benefit of redemption.  If we are not fully convinced that of our selves we are the dust of the earth incapable of a single good thought or meritorious action, we shall not cry out for help to Him who cometh to us from afar.  The more completely we realize our need, the more earnestly we shall implore Him to come quickly that He may relieve our misery.  There is no more fitting preparation for His arrival than the sincere admission of our dependence upon Him.  “Behold the afflictions of Thy people.  Come and deliver us as Thou hast promised” (Matins for the 1st Sunday of Advent, Dominican Breviary).

Sunday, December 21, 2014

December 21: O Óriens

At Vespers on these days, we pray one of the "O" antiphons at the Magnificat.  Today, December 21, the antiphon is "O Oriens":

O Óriens splendor lucis æternæ, et sol iustítiæ: veni, et illúmina sedéntes in ténebris, et umbra mortis.
O Dawn, Reflection of eternal Light and sun of justice; come, and give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.

From "Liturgical Meditations for the Entire Year" by the Sisters of St. Dominic, Adrian, MI (B. Herder, 1960):

As the dawn of Christ’s nativity approaches, Holy Church cries out for His everlasting brilliance to disperse the shadows of our misery and sin.  Frequently in the Advent liturgy she speaks of Him as light to honor the splendor of His eternal divinity and the enlightenment of all men by His coming.  Today she calls upon Him as the dawn, the first appearance of celestial brilliance upon the dark horizon of our world.

The splendor that streams from Bethlehem’s cave is meant to cast upon our lives the radiance of eternal light.  Let us ask ourselves whether we shrink from this divine illumination.  Perhaps there are dark corners in our souls, lurking shadows of sin, cherished spots of blindness where God’s light is not permitted to enter.  If we allow the holy Infant only partial entrance to our thoughts and affections, He cannot dispel the darkness of our souls and lead us to everlasting light.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

December 20: O clavis David

At Vespers on these days, we pray one of the "O" antiphons at the Magnificat.  Today, December 20, the antiphon is "O clavis David":

O clavis David et sceptrum domus Israël; qui aperis, et nemo claudit; claudis, et nemo aperit: veni, et educ vinctum de domo carceris, sedentem in ténebris, et umbra mortis.
O Key of David and Sceptre of the house of Israel, who opens and no one shall shut, who shuts and no one opens, come and bring out from prison the prisoner who sits in darkness and in the shadow of death.

From "Liturgical Meditations for the Entire Year" by the Sisters of St. Dominic, Adrian, MI (B. Herder, 1960):

In the office for today Holy Mother Church refers to the royal ancestry of our divine Lord by calling upon Him as key of David and scepter of the house of Israel.  He is the key of eternal design fitted to open the entrance to the heavenly kingdom.  He is the scepter of infinite authority holding sway over all creation from eternity unto eternity.

It is this King of awful power and terrible majesty who will come to us in a few days as a little child, not demanding the rights of His royalty and absolute dominion, but pleading for a place in our hearts and in our lives.  We are not forced to accept Him.  In fact, we may be too busy with self and creatures even to listen; but in the dawn of eternity we shall appear before the throne of His infinite majesty to be ruled by Him forever.  Let us call upon Him earnestly in the words of the Advent liturgy to come and redeem our wretchedness by His might power.  “Come and deliver me, O Lord; to Thee have I fled” (Lauds of the last Friday of Advent.

Friday, December 19, 2014

December 19: O O radix Iesse

At Vespers on these days, we pray one of the "O" antiphons at the Magnificat.  Today, December 19, the antiphon is "O radix Iesse":

O radix Iesse qui stas in signum populórum, super quem continebunt reges os suum, quem Gentes deprecabúntur: veni ad liberándum nos, iam noli tardare.
O Root of Jesse, who stands as an ensign to the peoples; because of whom kings shall shut their mouths; whom the nations shall seek; come and free us, do not any longer delay!

From "Liturgical Meditations for the Entire Year" by the Sisters of St. Dominic, Adrian, MI (B. Herder, 1960):

Today's liturgy takes us back more than ten centuries before the birth of Christ to the Bethlehem shepherd, Jesse, and his son, David the king.  Called by God's prophet from his father's flocks to the throne of Israel, David was the head of the royal family glorified by the human ancestry of Christ.  Many weary decades of humiliation and obscurity were to visit the descendants of Jesse before the pre-eminent Son of David would come to save His people.

In the vicissitudes of the Hebrew family from whom Christ derived His human origin, we may see a figure of our spiritual lives.  Anointed to the royal priesthood of Christ by the charism of baptism, we must endure suffering and humiliation before His image appears in us.  Purified by trial and chastened by mortification, we shall in God's time yield the fruits of sanctification unto eternal life.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

December 18: O Adonái

At Vespers on these days, we pray one of the "O" antiphons at the Magnificat.  Today, December 18, the antiphon is "O Adonai":

O Adonái et Dux domus Israël, qui Móysi in igne flammæ rubi apparuisti, et ei in Sina legem dedísti: veni ad redimendum nos in bráchio extento.
O Adonai, and leader of the house of Israel, who appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush and gave him the Law of Sinai, come, with outstretched arm, to redeem us.

From "Liturgical Meditations for the Entire Year" by the Sisters of St. Dominic, Adrian, MI (B. Herder, 1960):

Today the Church bids her children, sons of a new and glorious Israel, look back to that time when God Himself came in fiery vision to Moses that He might lead the chosen people from teh slavery of Egypt to the Promised Land.  The Red Sea through which they passed to their salvation is compared in the liturgy to the sacrament of baptism through whose saving waters we have reached the state of grace and the hope of life eternal.

As wonderfully as He led the Israelites  through the waters of the Red Sea, God led us by His divine providence to the font of baptism.  Moses expressed his appreciation of God's goodness in a magnificent canticle of praise.  Do we manifest in our lives the gratitude we owe to God for the grace of baptism which brought us "out of darkness into His marvelous light"?  (1 Peter 2:9)  We should not let this holy season pass without an increased appreciation of the gift of faith which makes our Christmas so different from the empty celebration of those who know not God.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

December 17: O Sapiéntia

Beginning today, we enter a more profound period in the Advent Season.  The days from December 17 to December 23 are the Advent equivalent of Passiontide in Lent.  During this time, the ferial days are II Class, and take precedence over III Class feast of saints (a commemoration is made during this time, of any III Class feast in the Proper of the Saints).

At Vespers on these days, we pray one of the "O" antiphons at the Magnificat.  Today, December 17, the antiphon is "O Wisdom":

O Sapiéntia quæ ex ore Altíssimi prodiisti, attingens a fine usque ad finem, fórtiter suaviterque disponens ómnia: veni ad docendum nos viam prudéntiæ.
O Wisdom, who came forth from the mouth of the Most High, and reaches mightily from one end of the earth to the other, ordering all things well’ come and teach us the way of understanding.

From "Liturgical Meditations for the Entire Year" by the Sisters of St. Dominic, Adrian, MI (B. Herder, 1960):

Holy Mother Church begins today her immediate preparation for Christmas by contemplating the divine and eternal origin of Him who is to come.  From all eternity the only-begotten Son of God, eternal uncreated Wisdom, came forth from the depths of the divine Mind, the perfect image of the Father’s splendor, “the brightness of His glory and the figure of His substance.” (Heb. 1.3)  From all eternity He willed to become man in order to redeem us from our sins and to show us in human form the infinite goodness, truth, and beauty of God.

In eternal silence the Word proceeded from the divine Intellect and in profound silence He assumed our nature in the womb of the immaculate Virgin.  In silence the divine Word comes to our souls with His generous gifts and loving inspirations.  I n the tranquility of recollection and the profound peace of a silent soul we must receive Him who comes to us.  Let us never permit our duties to hinder our recollection and disturb our preparation for the coming of our divine Lord.  None of these external affairs can penetrate the sanctuary of our souls unless we allow them to do so by anxiety about the success of our endeavors or preoccupation with matters of small import for eternity.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

December 6: St. Nicholas and the Dominican Order

The feast of St. Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, is one of those feasts in the Dominican Calendar which is III Class, as in the Roman Rite, but unlike the latter rite the Dominican Breviary contains a complete set of propers, as if the feast were II Class.  I was curious about the reason for this, so I did a little research in Fr. Bonniwell's "A History of the Dominican Liturgy", and this is what I found.

As the 13th century was drawing to a close, the Order elevated three (3) feasts on the calendar.  They were The Nativity of St. John the Baptist, the Feast of Ss. Peter and Paul, and St. Nicholas.  The two former feasts were elevated to totum duplex (the equivalent to a 1st Class Feast).  The feast of St. Nicholas was elevated to duplex (roughly equivalent to a II Class Feast).The reason for this is quite interesting.

Friday, December 5, 2014


Just in time for Christmas!  I am pleased to announce the completion of my 2015 Dominican Rite Calendar, for praying the 1962 Dominican Breviary.  The Calendar is now available from Fr. Augustine Thompson's "Dominican Liturgy Publications" at Lulu.

The calendar is based on the Dominican Rite Liturgical Calendar that Fr. Augustine Thompson, O.P. prepares every year.  The format is similar to that of the Ordo published by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter for the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite.  The calendar contains the entire liturgical year, according to the 1962 Breviarii Iuxta Ritum Ordinis Preædicatorum, updated with the most recent canonizations of Dominican saints.

Monday, December 1, 2014

December 1: Blessed John of Vercelli, C., O.P., Commemoration

Today, in the 1962 Dominican Rite Calendar, we make a commemoration of Blessed John of Vercelli, 6th Master General of the Order.  The Advent ferial office is prayed, according to the rubrics, and the commemoration of Blessed John is made at Lauds and Vespers, since his is a privileged commemoration.  In addition, a second commemoration is made of SS. Cyriacus, Largus, and Smaragdus, Martyrs.  At Pretiosa, the obits of Thomas Turco of Cremona, 56th Master General of the Order and Alexander Vincent Jandel of Nancy in France, 73rd Master General of the Order are read.