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ricordia ;) Domine, gloria thy faithful, were enrolled tibi.
under the divine name of thee our God, when thou didst become Man. Glory be to thee, O Lord ! for, great is thy mercy.
And now, a Hymn to our Lady, the Seat of Wisdom! Let us offer her this beautiful one, taken from the Cluny Missal of 1523.
SEQUENCE. Ave, mundi spes, Maria, Hail Mary! sweet hope of Ave mitis, ave pia,
the world! Hail, gentle Queen! Ave, plena gratia.
Hail, loving Mother! Hail,
full of grace! Ave, Virgo singularis, Hail, peerless Virgin ! Quæ per rubum designaris imaged in the Bush that Non passum incendia. burned, yet was not burnt. Ave, rosa speciosa,
Hail, lovely Rose! Hail, Ave, Jesse virgula,
Jesse's Rod! whose Fruit Cujus fructus
broke the chains of our Nostri luctus
misery. Relaxavit vincula. Ave, cujus viscera
Hail, Holy Mother! for Contra mundi fædera, whom God set aside all naEdiderunt filium.
ture's laws, and made thy virginal womb bring forth his
Son. Ave, carens simili,
Hail, matchless Queen ! Mundo diu flebili
'twas thou didst make the long Reparasti gaudium.
sad world rejoice. Ave, virginum lucerna, Hail, Beacon of Virgins ! Per quam fulsit lux superna pouring out thy celestial light His quos unda tenuit. on them whom tempests toss.
Ave, Virgo de qua nasci Hail, Virgin ! of whom the Et de cujus lacte pasci King of heaven would be born, Rex coelorum voluit.
and suck the food whereon he
deigned to live. Ave, gemma, coeli lumi- Hail, Pearl ! Hail Heavenly narum,
Orb ! Ave, sancti Spiritus sa- Hail, Temple of the Holy crarium.
Ghost! O quam mirabilis,
Oh! how wonderful and Et quam laudabilis
how venerable is this VirgiHæc est virginitas.
SUNDAY WITHIN THE OCTAVE OF
OR THE SIXTH DAY WITHIN THE OCTAVE.
(When the 30th of December does not fall on a Sunday, it is called “the Sixth Day within the “ Octave," and the 3rd Mass of Christmas Day is repeated, page 225; excepting only the Epistle and Gospel, which are taken from the 2nd Mass, pages 214, 215.)
This is the only day, within the Christmas Octave, which is not a Saint's Feast. During the Octaves of the Epiphany, Easter, and Pentecost, the Church is so absorbed in the respective mysteries, that she puts off everything that could share her attention; whereas, during this of Christmas, there is only one day which does not celebrate the memory of some glorious Saint, and our Infant Jesus is surrounded by a choir of heroes who loved and served him. Thus, the Church, or, more correctly, God—for God is the first author of the Cycle of the Year-shows us how the Incarnate Word, who came to save mankind, desires to give mankind confidence by this his adorable familiarity.
We have already shown that the Birth of our Lord took place on a Sunday, the Day on which, in the beginning of the world, God created Light. We shall find, later on, that his Resurrection, also, was on a Sunday. This the first day of creation, and the first of the week, was consecrated, by the old Pagans, to the Sun: with us Christians, it is most sacred and holy, on account of the two risings of our divine Sun of Justice—his Birth and his Resurrection. Whilst the solemnity of Easter is always kept on a Sunday, that of Christmas falls, by turns, on each of the days of the week—we have already had this difference explained to us by the Holy Fathers :—but, the mystery of Jesus' Birth is more aptly and strongly expressed, when its anniversary falls on a Sunday. Other years, when the coincidence does not happen, the Faithful will, at least, be led by their Christian instincts, to give especial honour to the Day, within the Octave, which falls on the Sunday. The Church has honoured it with a proper Mass and Office, and we of course insert them.
It was at Midnight, that the Lord delivered his people from bondage, by the Passage of his destroying Angel over the land of the Egyptians: so, also, was it in the still hour of midnight, that Jesus, the Angel of the Great Counsel, came down from his royal throne, bringing mercy to our earth. It is just, that whilst commemorating this second Passage, the Church should sing the praises of her Emmanuel, who comes, clad in his strength and beauty, to take possession of his Kingdom.
While all things were in Dum medium silentium quiet silence, and the night tenerent omnia, et nox in was in the midst of her course, suo cursu medium iter hathy Almighty Word, O Lord, beret, omnipotens sermo tucame down from thy royal us, Domine, de coelis, a rethrone.
galibus sedibus venit. Ps. The Lord hath reigned, Ps. Dominus regnavit, dehe is clothed with beauty : the corem indutus est : indutus
est Dominus fortitudinem, Lord is clothed with strength, et præcinxit se. ¥. Gloria and hath girded himself. . Patri. Dum medium. Glory, dec. While all.
In the Collect, the Church prays to be directed by that divine rule, which was taught us by our Saviour, the Sun of Justice, who shone upon us in order to enlighten and guide our steps in the path of good works.
Omnipotens, sempiterne O Almighty and Eternal Deus, dirige actus nostros God, regulate our actions acin beneplacito tuo : ut in cording to thy divine will : nomine dilecti Filii tui me- that, in the name of thy bereamur bonis operibus abun- loved Son, we may abound in dare. Qui tecum.
good works. Who liveth, doc.
The Commemorations of the Octaves of Christmas, &c., are given in page 315 : that of St. Thomas of Canterbury, in page 352.
Lectio Epistolæ beati Pauli Lesson of the Epistle of Saint Apostoli ad Galatas. Paul the Apostle to the Ga
latians. Cap. IV.
Ch. IV. Fratres, quanto tempore Brethren: As long as the hæres parvulus est, nihil heir is a child, he differeth differt a servo, cum sit do- nothing from a servant, though minus omnium : sed sub he be lord of all : but is under tutoribus et actoribus est tutors and governors, until the usque ad præfinitum tem- time appointed by the father : pus a patre : ita et nos, cum so we, also, when we were essemus parvuli, sub cle- children, were serving under mentis mundi eramus ser- the elements of the world. vientes. At ubi venit pleni- But when the fulness of the tudo temporis, misit Deus time was come, God sent his Filium suum factum ex Son, made of a woman, made muliere, factum sub lege, under the law, that he might ut eos, qui sub lege erant, redeem them who were under redimeret, ut adoptionem the law, that we might receive