June 6, 2008
Friday
vol 18, no. 157

Double Feast of Saint Norbert, Bishop and Confessor


FIRST FRIDAY

White Vestments

Missa "Statuit ei Dominus"

        Today is the Double Feast of Saint Norbert who was born around 1080 at Kanten on the left bank of the Rhine, near Wesel. His father, Heribert, Count of Gennep, was related to the imperial house of Germany, and his house of Lorraine. A stately bearing, a penetrating intellect, a tender, earnest heart, marked the future apostle. Ordained subdeacon, Norbert was appointed to a canonry at Kanten. Soon after he was summoned to the Court of Frederick, Prince-Bishop of Cologne, and later to that of Henry V, Emperor of Germany, whose almoner he became. The Bishopric of Cambray was offered to him, but refused. Norbert allowed himself to be so carried away by pleasure that nothing short of a miracle of grace could make him lead the life of an earnest cleric.

        Feeling high on his horse, so to speak, he had his comeuppance while riding to Vreden, a village near Kanten, when he was overtaken by a storm. A thunderbolt fell at his horse's feet; the frightened animal threw its rider, and for nearly an hour he lay like one dead. Thus humbled, Norbert became a sincere penitent. Renouncing his appointment at Court, he retired to Kanten to lead a life of penance.

        Understanding, however, that he stood in need of guidance, he placed himself under the direction of Cono, Abbot of Siegburg. In gratitude to Cono, Norbert founded the Abbey of Fürstenberg, endowed it with a portion of his property, and made it over to Cono and his Benedictine successors. Norbert was then in his thirty-fifth year. Feeling that he was called to the priesthood, he presented himself to the Bishop of Cologne, from whose hands he received Holy Orders. After a forty days' retreat at Siegburg Abbey, he celebrated his first Mass at Kanten and preached an earnest discourse on the transitory character of this world's pleasures and on man's duties toward God. The insults of some young clerics, one of whom even spat in his face, he bore with wonderful patience on that occasion. Norbert often went to Siegburg Abbey to confer with Cono, or to the cell of Ludolph, a holy and learned hermit-priest, or to the Abbey or Klosterrath near Rolduc.

        Accused as an innovator at the Council of Fritzlar, he resigned all his ecclesiastical preferments, disposed of his estate, and gave all to the poor, reserving for himself only what was needed for the celebration of Holy Mass. Barefooted and begging his bread, he journeyed as far as St. Giles, in Languedoc, to confer with Pope Gelasius concerning his future life. Unable to keep Norbert at his court, Gelasius granted him faculties to preach wherever he judged proper. At Valenciennes Norbert met in March, 1119 the Bishop of Cambray Bishop Burchard, whose chaplain joined him in his apostolic journeys in France and Belgium.

        After the death of Pope Gelasius, Norbert wished to confer with his successor, Calixtus II, at the Council of Reims in October 1119. The pope and Bartholomew, Bishop of Laon, requested Norbert to found a religious order in the Diocese of Laon, so that his work might be perpetuated after his death. Norbert chose a lonely, marshy valley, shaped in the form of a cross, in the Forest of Coucy, about ten miles from Laon, and named Prémontré. Hugh of Fosses, Evermode of Cambray, Antony of Nivelles, seven students of the celebrated school of Anselm, and Ralph at Laon were his first disciples. The young community at first lived in huts of wood and clay, arranged like a camp around the chapel of St. John the Baptist, but they soon built a larger church and a monastery for the religious who joined them in increasing numbers. Going to Cologne to obtain relics for their church, Norbert discovered through a vision, the spot where those of St. Ursula and her companions, of St. Gereon, and of other martyrs lay hidden.

        Women also wished to become members of the new religious order. Blessed Ricwera, widow of Count Raymond of Clastres, was St. Norbert's first spiritual daughter, and her example was followed by women of the best families of France and Germany. Soon after this, Norbert returned to Germany and preached in Westphalia, when Godfrey, Count of Kappenberg, offered himself and gave three of his castles to be made into abbeys. On his return from Germany, Norbert was met by Theobald, Count of Champagne, who wished to become a member of the order; but Norbert insisted that God wished Theobald to marry and do good in the world. Theobald agreed to this, but begged Norbert to prescribe a rule of life. Norbert prescribed a few rules and invested Theobald with the white scapular of the order, and thus, in 1122, the Third Order of St. Norbert was instituted.

        The saint was soon requested by the Bishop of Cambrai to go and combat the infamous heresies which Tanchelin had promulgated, and which had their centre at Antwerp. As a result of his preaching the people of the Low Countries abjured their heresies, and many brought back to him the Sacred Species which they had stolen and profaned. In commemoration of this, St. Norbert has been proclaimed the Apostle of Antwerp, and the feast of his triumph over the Sacramentarian heresy is celebrated in the Archdiocese of Mechlin on 11 July.

        The rapid growth of the order was marvellous, and bishops entreated Norbert to found new houses in their dioceses. Floreffe, Viviers, St-Josse, Ardenne, Cuissy, Laon, Liège, Antwerp, Varlar, Kappenberg and others were founded during the first five years of the order's existence. Though the order had already been approved by the pope's legates, Norbert, accompanied by three disciples, journeyed to Rome, in 1125, to obtain its confirmation by the new pope, Honorius II. The Bull of Confirmation is dated 27 February, 1126. Passing through Würzburg on his return to Prémontré, Norbert restored sight to a blind woman; the inhabitants were so full of admiration for him that they spoke of electing him successor to the bishop who had just died, but Norbert and his companions fled secretly.

        Soon after this, on his way to Ratisbon, he passed through Spier, where Lothair, King of the Romans, was holding a diet, the papal legate being present. Deputies form Magdeburg had also come to solicit a successor to their late archbishop, Rudger. The papal legate and Lothair used their authority, and obliged Norbert to accept the vacant see. On taking possession of it, he was grieved to find that much property belonging to the Church and the poor had been usurped by powerful men, and that many of the clergy led scandalous lives. He succeeded in converting some of the transgressors, but others only became more obstinate, and three attempts were made on his life. He resisted Pietro di Leoni, who, as antipope, had assumed the name of Anacletus and was master in Rome. St. Norbert exerted himself at the Council of Reims to attach the German Emperor and the German bishops and princes more firmly to the cause of Pope Innocent II.

        Though his health was increasingly delicate, Norbert accompanied Lothair and his army to Rome to put the rightful pope on the Chair of St. Peter, and he resisted the pope's concession of the investiture to the emperor. Norbert, whose health was now much impaired, accompanied the Emperor Lothair back to Germany and for some time remained with him, assisting him as his chancellor and adviser. In March, 1134, Norbert had become so feeble that he had to be carried to Magdeburg where he died on the Wednesday after Pentecost on this day in 1134. By order of the emperor, his body was laid at rest in the Norbertine Abbey of St. Mary, at Magdeburg. His tomb became glorious by the numerous miracles wrought there. The Bollandists say that there is no document to prove that he was canonized by Innocent III. His canonization was by Gregory XIII in 1582, and his cultus was executed to the whole church by Clement X.

        On 2 May, 1627, the saint's body was translated from Magdeburg, then in the hands of Protestants, to the Abbey of Strahov, a suburb of Prague in Bohemia. The Chancery of Prague preserved the abjurations of six hundred Protestants who, on the day, or during the octave, of the translation, were reconciled to the Catholic Church. On that occasion the Archbishop of Prague, at the request of the civil and ecclesiastical authorities, proclaimed St. Norbert the Patron and Protector of Bohemia. (Source: New Advent)

      Resources: We are grateful to Friends of Our Lady of Fatima for providing the Propers for the faithful. Sources: Saint Andrew Daily Missal and the Marian Missal , 1945


Missa "Statuit ei Dominus"

Go to the ORDINARY OF THE HOLY MASS THE MASS OF THE CATECHUMENS
INTROIT:   Ecclesiasticus 45: 30
Statuit ei Dominus testamentum pacis, et principem fecit eum: ut sit illi sacerdotii dignitas in aeternum. (Ps. 131: 1 ) Memento Domine, David: et omnis mansuetudinus ejus. V. Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto. Sicut erat in principio et nunc et semper et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.
RepeatStatuit ei Dominus...
The Lord made to him a covenant of peace, and made him a prince: that the dignity of priesthood should be to him for ever. (Ps. 131: 1) O Lord, remember David: and all his meekness. v. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
RepeatSimon Peter, If thou lovest Me...
Return to the ORDINARY OF THE HOLY MASS THE MASS OF THE CATECHUMENS
COLLECT
Dominus vobiscum. R. Et cum spiritu tuo.

Oremus. Deus, qui beátum Norbértum, Confessórem tuum atque Pontíficem, verbi tui præcónem exímium effecísti, et per eum Ecclésiam tuam nova prole fecundásti: præsta, quæsumus; ut, ejúsdem suffragántibus méritis, quod ore simul et ópere dócuit, te adjuvánte, exercére valeámus. Per Dominum Jesum Christum, Filium Tuum, Qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus,
Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
R. Amen.

The Lord be with you. R. And with thy spirit.

Let us pray. O God, Who didst make blessed Norbert, Thy confessor and bishop, an excelling preacher of Thy word, and through him didst cause Thy Church to bring forth a new progeny, grant, we beseech Thee, that, by the intercession of his merits, we may have the strength, with Thine assistance, to practice what he, both by word and work, hath taught us. Through the same Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God
Forever and ever.
R.Amen.


EPISTLE:   James 1: 12-18
Léctio libri Sapiéntiæ. Ecce sacérdos magnus, qui in diébus suis plácuit Deo, et invéntus est justus: et in témpore iracúndiæ factus est reconciliátio. Non est invéntus símilis illi, qui conservávit legem Excélsi. Ideo jurejurándo fecit illum Dóminus créscere in plebem suam. Benedictiónem ómnium géntium dedit illi, et testamén­tum suum confirmávit super caput ejus. Agnóvit eum in benedictiónibus suis: conservávit illi misericórdiam suam: et invénit grátiam coram óculis Dómini. Magnificávit eum in conspéctu regum: et dedit illi corónam glóriæ. Státuit illi testaméntum ætérnum, et dedit iili sacerdótium magnum: et beatificávit illum in glória. Fungi sacerdátio, et habére laudem in nómine ipsius, et offérre illi incénsum dignum in odórem suavitátis.
Deo Gratias.
Lesson from the Book of Wisdom. Behold a great priest, who in his days pleased God, and was found just; and in the time of wrath was made a reconciliation. There was not any found like to him, who kept the law of the Most High. Therefore by an oath the Lord made him increase among his people. He gave him the blessing of all nations, and confirmed His covenant upon his head. He acknowledged him in His blessings: He preserved for him His mercy: and he found grace before the eyes of the Lord. He glorified him in the sight of kings, and gave him a crown of glory. He made an everlasting covenant with him; and gave him a great priesthood; and made him blessed in glory. To execute the office of the priesthood and to have praise in his name, and to offer to him worthy incense for an odor of sweetness.
Thanks be to God.

GRADUAL: Psalm 44: 16
Ecce sacérdos magnus, qui in diébus suis plácuit Deo V. (Eccl. 44: 20) Non est invéntus símilis illi, qui conserváret legem Excélsi. Allelúja, allelúja. V. (Ps. 109: 4) Tu es sacérdos in ætérnum, secúndum órdinem Melchísedech. Allelúja.
Behold a great priest, who in his days pleased God. V. ( Eccl. 44, 20.) There was not any found like to him, who kept the law of the Most High. Alleluia, alleluia. V. (Ps. 109: 4) Thou art a priest forever, according to the order of Melchisedech. Alleluia.

GOSPEL:    Matthew 25: 14-23
Dominus vobiscum.
R. Et cum spiritu tuo.
Sequentia sancti Evangelii secundum Matthaeum.
R.Gloria tibi, Domine

In illo tempore : Dixit Jesus discipulis suis parabola hanc : 'Homo peregre proficiscens, vocavit servos suos, et tradidit illis bona sua. Et uni dedit Quinquae talenta, alli autem duo, alli vero unum unicuique secundum propriam virtutem, et profectus est statim. Abiit autem qui Quinque talenta acceperat, et operatus est in eis, et lucratus est alia qinque. Similiter et qui duo acceperat, lucratus est alia duo. Aui autem unum acceperat, abiens fodit in terran, et abscondit pecuniam domni sui. Post multum vero temporis venit dominus servorum illorum, et posuit rationem cum eis. Et accedens qui Quinque talenta acceperat, obtulit alia Quinque talenta, dicens : Domine, Quinque talenta tradidisti mihi, ecce alia Quinque superlucratus sum. Ait illi dominus ejus : Euge, serve bone et fidelis, quia super pauca fuisti fidelis, super multa te constituam : intra in gaudium domini tui. Acessit autem et qui duo talenta acceperat, et ait : Domine, duo talenta tradidisti mihi, ecce alia duo lucratus sum. Ait illi dominus ejus : Euge, serve bone et fidelis, quia super pauca fuisti fidelis, super multa te constituam : intra in gaudium domini tui.
Laus tibi Christe.

The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
The continuation of the holy Gospel according to Matthew. R. Glory to Thee, O Lord

At that time Jesus spoke this parable to His disciples: "A man going into a far country called his servants, and delivered to them his goods. And to one he gave five talents, and to another two, and to another one, to every one according to his proper ability : and immediately he took his journey. And he that had received the five talents went his way, and traded with the same, and gained another five. And in like manner he that had received the two gained other two. But he that had received the one, going his way, digged into the earth and hid his lord's money. But after a long time the lord of those servants came and reckoned with them. And he that had received the five talents coming, brought other five talents, saying : Lord, thou didst deliver to me five talents, behold I have gained other five over and above. His lord said to him: Well done, good and faithful servant, because thou has been faithful over a few things, I will place thee over many things : enter thou into the joy of thy lord. And he also that had received the two talents came and said : Lord, thou deliverest two talents to me, behold I have gained other two. His lord said to him: Well done, good and faithful servant, because thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will place thee over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord."
Praise be to Christ


OFFERTORY:    Ps 88: 25
Dominus vobiscum.
R. Et cum spiritu tuo.

Véritas mea, et misericórdia mea cum ipso: et in nómine meo exaltábitur cornu ejus.
The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.

Let us pray. My truth and My mercy shall be with him; and in My name shall his horn be exalted.
Return to the ORDINARY OF THE HOLY MASS THE OFFERTORY
SECRET
Hóstias tibi, Dómine, beáti Norbértum, Confessóris tui atque Pontíficis, dicátas méritis, benignus assúme: et ad perpétuum nobis tríbue proveníre subsídium. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, Qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus,
Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
R. Amen.
Graciously receive, O Lord, the sacrifices dedicated to the merits of Thy blessed confessor and bishop, Norbert, and grant they may be for us an everlasting help. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God
Forever and ever.
R.Amen.

PREFACE   Common Preface
Dominus vobiscum.
R. Et cum spiritu tuo.
Sursum corda.
R.Habemus ad Dominum.
Gratias agamus Domino Deo nostro.
R. Dignum et justum est.

Vere dignum et justum est, aequum et salutare, nos Tibi simper, et ubique gratias agere: Domine sancte, Pater omnipotens, aeterne Deus: per Christum Dominum nostrum. Per quem majestatem Tuam laudant Angeli, adorant Dominationes, tremunt Potestates, Coeli, Coelorumque Virtutes, ac beata Seraphim socia exultatione concelebrant. Cum quibus et nostras voces, ut admitti, jubeas, supplici confessione dicentes:
SANCTUS, SANCTUS, SANCTUS...
The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
Lift up your hearts.
R.We have lifted them up to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
R. It is meet and just.

It is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation that we should at all times and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God: through Christ our Lord. Through Whom the Angels praise Thy Majesty, the Dominations worship it, the Powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the Heavenly hosts together with the blessed Seraphim in triumphant chorus unite to celebrate it. Together with them we entreat Thee, that Thou mayest bid our voices also to be admitted, while we say in lowly praise:
HOLY, HOLY, HOLY...

Return to the ORDINARY OF THE HOLY MASS THE CANON OF THE MASS
COMMUNION:    Luke 12: 42
Fidelis servus et prudens, quem constituit Dominus super familiam suam: ut det illis in tempore tritici mensuram.
This is the faithful and wise steward, whom his lord setteth over his family: to give them their measure of wheat in due season.

POSTCOMMUNION
Dominus vobiscum.
R. Et cum spiritu tuo.
Oremus.
Praesta, quaesumus, Omnipotens Deus : ut, de perceptis muneribus gratias exhibentes, intercendente beato Norbértum Confessore tuo atque Pontifice, beneficia potiora sumamus. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum, Filium Tuum, Qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus,
Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
R. Amen.
The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
Let us pray.
O God, the rewarder of faithful souls, grant that, through the prayers of blessed Norbert, Thy confessor and bishop, whose august solemnity we celebrate, we may obtain pardon of our sins. Through the Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God
For ever and ever.
R. Amen.
Return to the ORDINARY OF THE HOLY MASS CONCLUSION OF THE HOLY MASS


Daily Proper of the Mass for the feast of St. Norbert on June 6