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Semi-Double Feast         Purple or Violet Vestments

        Editor's Note: All Scriptural Readings are taken from the Douay-Rheims version of the Latin Vulgate Bible. The preface commentaries are a combination of thoughts from various sources. Red type indicates Our Lord's direct words in Holy Scripture. Italicized Maroon type indicates Latin with priests' refrain and server's response in bold..

        We leave the Time of Quadragesima behind and begin the Season of Passiontide today, which will run for the next two weeks as the Church, in her liturgy, climbs toward Calvary. It is full of thoughts of the Passion of Jesus and of the infidelity of the Jews, whoe place in the Kingdom of God was taken by those who were baptized as Christ charged in Mark 16: 15-16, "Go ye into the whole world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth, and is baptized, shall be saved; but he that believeth not, shal be condemned."
        Beginning with the Divine Office of Matins, we see this theme. Pope Saint Gregory the Great says, "Our Lord's words in this place are awful indeed. He that is God heareth the words of God. Therefore you hear them not because you are not of God. If therefore he hears the words of God who is of God, and none who is not of Him can hear them; let each one examine himself as to whether he receives the word of God in his heart, and so he shall know to whom he belongs." This is borne out in the Invitatory at Matins: "Today, if you hear the voice of the Lord, hearden not your hearts." St. Gregory also affirms from the Third Nocturn: "There are some who do not even vouchsafe to listen to the commandments of God with their bodily ears, and there are some who hearken indeed with the ears of the body without having in their minds any desire to carry them out. And there are still others who willingly receive the words of God even to the point of being moved to tears, but no sooner has the moment of emotion pased than they return to their evil life. Certainly, none of these hearken to the Divine precepts, since they fail to carry them out in good works."
        It was thus that the Jews acted, for to their words of hate they added acts of enmity, showing that their father was the devi, a murderer from the beginning, nay, a murderer and a liar. It was he who deceived our first parents in the garden of Eden thereby dealing them a fatal blow. All who hate the truth and try to harm their neighbor are the sons of satan. Obeying his evil suggestions, the Jews hated Him Who spoke the truth to them and they sought to get rid of Him.
        In the Epistle St. Paul tells us that Christ is the Head, the Divine Pontiff and the Mediator of the New Covenant. As the high pirest once entered the Holy of Holies with the blood of the victims, so, in a more excellent manner, Christ enters into Heaven, the true Holy of Holies, after having shed His Own Blood which He offers to God His Father.
        In the Gospel, St. John shows us the growing hatred of the Sanhedrin. The Jews, who ought to have recognized in Jesus the Son of God, greater than Abraham and the prophets, because He is eternal, disregarded the meaning of His words. The insulted Our ord Jesus Christ, the Messiah, Whom they declared to be possessed by a devil, a blasphemer, whom they would stone to death.
        The Masses this week and until Maundy Thursday omit the Gloria Patri at the Introit and Lavabo In the Introit, David exiled among hostile people, represents Christ "against Whom rose up an angry nation" to stone Him. Almighty God had said "I AM WHO AM", and our Lord uses the same words, "I AM". Blinded by the divine Light which thus shone in all its brightness before them, they plunged of their own free wil into the deepest darkness of error and sought to stone Christ, Whom they had dared to accuse of blasphemy. What then of those today who justify the Jew's actions or explain it away as never happening? Pray for the conversion of the Jews so they may once again be the Chosen People of God for Extra Ecclesia Nulla Salus - "Outside the Church there is no Salvation!"


      Judge me, O God, and distinguish my cause against an ungodly nation. Deliver me from the unjust and deceitful man, for Thou art my God and my strength. O send out Thy light and Thy truth. They have led me, and brought me unto Thy holy hill, even unto Thy tabernacles. (Psalm 42: 1-2). Judge me, O God, and distinguish...

Dominus Vobiscum.
Et cum spiritu tuo.

      We beseech Thee, Almighty God, look mercifully upon Thy family: that, by Thy bounty, it may be governed in body, and by Thy keeping be guarded in mind. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who livest and reignest with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.

      (Hebrews 9: 11-15) Brethren: Brethren: When Christ appeared as high priest of the good things to come, He entered once and for all through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made by hands (that is, not of this creation), nor again by virtue of the blood of goats and calves , but by virtue of His own blood, into the Holies, having obtained eternal redemption. For, if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkled ashes of a heifer, sanctify the unclean unto the cleansing of the flesh -- how much more will the blood of Christ, Who, through the Holy Ghost, offered Himself, unblemished, unto God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And this is why He is a mediator of a new covenant, that whereas a death has taken place for redemption from the transgressions committed under the former covenant, that they who have been called may receive eternal inheritance according to the promise, in Christ Jesus, our Lord.

Deo Gratias.

     (Psalm 142: 9-10)Eripe me, Domine - Deliver me, O Lord, from my enemies. Teach me to do Thy will. V. (Psalm 17: 48-49) My deliverer, O Lord, from the angry nations; Thou wilt lift me up above those that rise up against me. From the unjust man Thou wilt deliver me.

TRACT:     (Psalm 128: 1, 4) Often have they fought against me from my youth.V. Let Israel now say, often have they fought against me from my youth. V.But they could not prevail over me. The wicked have wrought upon my back.V. They have lengthened their iniquities. The Lord, who is just, will cut the necks of sinners.

Sequentia sancti Evangelii secundum N...
Gloria tibi, Domine.

      (John 8: 46-59) At that time, Jesus said to the crowds of the Jews, "Which of you will convict Me of sin? If I speak the truth, why do you not believe Me? He who is of God hears the words of God. The reason why you do not hear is that you are not of God." The Jews therefore in answer said to Him, "Are we not right in saying that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?" Jesus answered, "I have not a devil, but I honor My Father, and you dishonor Me. Yet, I do not seek My Own glory; there is One Who seeks and Who judges. Amen, amen, I say to you, if anyone keep My word, he will never see death." The Jews therefore said, "Now we know that Thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets, and Thou sayest, `If anyone keep my word, he will never see death.' Art Thou greater than our father, Abraham, who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Whom dost Thou make thyself?" Jesus answered, "If I glorify Myself, My glory is nothing. It is My Father Who glorifies Me, of Whom you say that He is your God. And you do not know Him, but I know Him. And if I say that I do not know Him, I shall be like you, a liar. But I know Him and I keep His word. Abraham your father rejoiced that he was to see my day. He saw it and was glad." The Jews therefore said to Him, "Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast Thou seen Abraham?" Jesus said to them, "Amen, amen, I say to you, before Abraham came to be, I am." They therefore took up stones to cast at Him; but Jesus hid himself, and went out from the temple.
Laus tibi, Christe.

Dominus Vobiscum.
Et cum spiritu tuo.

     (Psalm 118: 17, 107) I will confess to Thee with my whole heart. Render to Thy servant. I shall live and keep Thy words. Enliven me according to Thy word, O Lord.

      May these offerings, we beseech Thee, O Lord, loosen the bonds of our wickedness, and procure for us the gifts of Thy mercy. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God... Per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

(Preface of the Holy Cross)

     (1 Corinthians 11: 24-25) This is My Body, which shall be delivered for you: This chalice is the new testament in My Blood, saith the Lord: do this, as often as you receive it, in commemoration of Me.

Dominus Vobiscum.
Et cum spiritu tuo.

      Remain with us, O Lord, our God and defend with Thy continual support those whom Thou hast renewed by Thy Mysteries. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee, in unity with the Holy Ghost, one God, forever and ever. Amen.

For the Prayers at the End of the Low Mass, see Leonine Prayers


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