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In the Offertory, the holy Church sings of the crown of glory, wherewith our Emmanuel encircled the brow of his Martyr. The Pastor gave his blood to purchase that crown; and his death gave him life.
OFFERTORY, Thou hast set, O Lord, on Posuisti, Domine, in cahis head a crown of precious pite ejus coronam de lapide stones : he asked life of thee, pretioso : vitam petiit a te, and thou didst give it him, et tribuisti ei, alleluia. alleluia.
The Secret shows us that the merits of the Martyr are united with those of the Divine Victim. Whilst offering the Blood of the Lamb to the Eternal Father, we remind him of that shed by his Martyr.
Sanctify, O Lord, the offer- Munera tibi, Domine, diings consecrated to thee; and cata sanctifica : et intercebeing appeased thereby, mer- dente beato Thoma, Martyre cifully look upon us, by the tuo atque Pontifice, per intercession of blessed Thomas, eadem nos placatus intende. thy Martyr and Bishop. Per Dominum. Through, &c.
In the Communion-Verse, we have our Divine Pastor Jesus speaking to us, the same that has just been giving himself to his sheep, as their food. It is by this Holy Sacrament, that the Sheep more intimately know their Shepherd, and that the Shepherd, who has just been born in the House of Bread, (Bethlehem,) receives a proof of their love to him.
COMMUNION. I am the Good Shepherd : Ego sum Pastor bonus : and I know my sheep, and my et cognosco oves meas, et sheep know me.
cognoscunt me meæ. In the Postcommunion, the Church once more pronounces the name of our great Martyr. She prays that she may obtain, through his intercession, the grace of receiving more fully, than ever, the effects of the divine Mystery, which cleanses our souls, and is the remedy of their infirmities.
POSTCOMMUNION. Hæc nos communio, Do- May this communion, O mine, purget a crimine : et Lord, cleanse us from sin : and intercedente beato Thoma, by the intercession of blessed Martyre tuo atque Pontifice, Thomas, thy Martyr and coelestis remedii faciat essé Bishop, make us effectually participes. Per Dominum. partakers of this heavenly re
medy. Through, dc.
The Second Vespers are the same as the First, given in page 321. After the Prayer of the Feast, the following Commemorations are made:
Commemoration of the Sunday. Ant. Dum medium silen- Ant. While all things were tium tenerent omnia, et nox in quiet silence, and the night in suo cursu medium iter was in the midst of her course, perageret, omnipotens sermo thy Almighty Word, O Lord, tuus, Domine, a regalibus came down from thy royal sedibus venit, alleluia. throne, alleluia.
Ñ. Verbum caro factum W. The Word was made est, alleluia.
flesh, alleluia. B. Et habitavit in nobis,
B. And dwelt among us, alleluia.
(or) V. Notum fecit Dominus, . The Lord hath made alleluia.
known, alleluia. B. Salutare suum, alle- B. His Salvation, alleluia. luia.
LET US PRAY. Omnipotens, sempiterne O Almighty and Eternal Deus, dirige actus nostros in God, regulate our actions ac
cording to thy divine will : beneplacito tuo : ut in nothat, in the name of thy be- mine dilecti Filii tui mereloved Son, we may abound in amur bonis operibus abungood works.
Commemoration of Christmas Day. This day, Christ is born; Ant. Hodie Christus nathis day, the Saviour hath ap- tus est, hodie Salvator appapeared ; this day, the Angels ruit, hodie in terra canunt sing on earth; the Archangels Angeli, lætantur Archanrejoice; this day, the just ex- geli ; hodie exsultant justi, ult, saying : Glory be to God dicentes : Gloria in excelsis in the highest, alleluia. Deo, alleluia.
. The Lord hath made Notum fecit Dominus, known, alleluia.
alleluia. B. His Salvation, alleluia. R. Salutare suum, alle
(or) Ť. All the ends of the earth . Viderunt omnes fines have seen, alleluia.
terræ, alleluia. B. The Salvation of our B. Salutare Dei nostri, God, alleluia.
LET US PRAY.
OREMUS. Grant, we beseech thee, O Concede, quæsumus, omAlmighty God, that we who nipotens Deus, ut nos Unigroan under the old captivity geniti tui nova per carnem of sin, may be freed therefrom nativitas liberet, quos sub by the new birth of thine Only peccati jugo vetusta servitus Begotten Son. Through the tenet. Per eumdem.
As we might expect, the Liturgy of our English Church honours ber beloved Martyr with an affectionate and enthusiastic homage. We copy from the ancient Salisbury Breviary several passages, and we begin with some of the Antiphons of Matins and Lauds. The whole Office is rhymed, according to the custom observed in the 13th century, the time when this Office of St. Thomas was composed.
Summo sacerdotio Tho- Thomas being raised to the mas sublimatus, et in vi- fulness of the Priesthood, was rum alium subito muta- suddenly transformed into a tus.
Monachus sub clerico A monk, wearing the hairclam ciliciatus, carnis, carne shirt secretly under
his cleric's fortior, edomat conatus. dress, he subdues the rebellion
of his flesh, for he was not a
slave to the flesh. Cultor agri Domini tribu- Husbandman of the Lord's los evellit, et vulpes a vineis vineyard, he roots up the arcet et expellit.
brambles, and drives the foxes
from the vines. Nec in agnos sustinet lu- He neither suffers wolves to pos desævire, nec in hortum prowl among the lambs, nor olerum tineam transire. slugs to crawl in the garden.
Exulantis prædia præda He is sent into exile, and his sunt malignis, sed in igne possessions made
to positum non exurit ignis. wicked men ; but the fire of
tribulation burns him not. Satanæ satellites irrum- The satellites of Satan rush pentes templum, inaudi- into the Temple, and perpetum perpetrant sceleris trate the unheard-of crime. exemplum.
Strictis Thoma sensibus Thomas advances to meet obviam procedit, non minis, the unsheathed swords : nor non gladiis, sed nec morti threats, nor swords, nor very cedit.
death can make him yield. Felix locus, felix ecclesia Happy Canterbury ! Happy in qua Thomæ vivit memo- Church that cherishes the ria : Felix terra quæ dedit memory of her Thomas! Happræsulem, felix illa quæ py Land that gave such a fovit exulem.
Bishop, and happy, too, the country that harboured such
an exile ! Granum cadit, copiam The grain of wheat falls, and germinat frumenti : "ala- bringeth forth much fruit': the bastrum frangitur, fragrat precious vase is broken, and vis unguenti.
perfumes all the earth ! Totus orbis Martyris cer
The whole earth seeks how tat in amorem, cujus signa most to love our Martyr, and singulos agunt in stuporem. men look in wonder at each
other as they hear or see the miracles that are wrought.
Our next selection is of passages equally interest
ing, as showing the affection and confidence of the Faithful in our glorious Martyr.
Ant. The Shepherd, slain ANT. Pastor, cæsus in in the midst of his flock, pur- gregis medio, pacem emit chaseth peace at the price of cruoris pretio : lætus dolor his blood. O joyful mourning, in tristi gaudio! Grex respiO mournful joy! The Shep- rat, pastore mortuo : planherd dead, new life is in the gens plaudit mater in filio, Flock! The Mother speaks, quia vivit victor sub gladio. through her tears, the praises of her Son, for still he lives, the conqueror of the sword. B. Cease now to mourn,
R. Mundi florem a mundo that the flower of the world conteri, Rachel plorans, hath been broken by the jam cessa conqueri; Thoworld, O sorrowing Rachel ! achel ! mas
dum datur The tomb of thy martyred funeri, novus Abel succedit Thomas gives thee back an veteri. Abel for the Abel thou didst lose.
Ant. Hail, O Thomas ! scep- ANT. Salve, Thoma, virtre of justice, light of the ga justitiæ, mundi jubar, earth, strong champion of the robur Ecclesiæ, plebis amor, Church, beloved of the people, cleri deliciæ. Salve, gregis favourite of the clergy! Hail, tutor egregie, salva tuæ admirable keeper of the Flock! gaudentes gloriæ. keep in safety all us who rejoice in thy glory.
We cannot resist adding the following Responsory from the same Salisbury Breviary. It is remarkable for its containing an entire Prose, inserted as a Verse, with the repetition of the Colum domo at the end. We need scarcely draw the attention of our readers to the freshness and beauty of this liturgical gem.
B. The grain of wheat lies R. Jacet granum oppressmothered by the chaff, the sum palea, justus cæsus prajust man slain by the sword of vorum framea. sinners.
* Changing his house of * Cælum domo commuclay for heaven.