15 September 2019

We need a Novena ...

Today, September 15, Feast of our Blessed Lady of Sorrows, is a good day to start a Novena leading up to the Feast of our Lady of Walsingham, on Tuesday 24 September.

Nine days of prayer, that the intercession of the Mother of God might bring succour to the Ecclesia adflicta of her divine Son. Has the Church, in your lifetime, ever needed this more than it does today?

And I would like to put in a word for the use, during this Novena, of the old Litany of our Lady of Loretto, rather than of something ... anything ... more 'up-to-date' which may be suggested.

I have two reasons for making this point.
(1) The theology of the Shrine at Walsingham is the same as that of Loretto: namely, that the House in which the Holy Family lived and worked is a potent image of the Incarnation! God truly became, and  is, Man.
(2) This Litany is one which was used since the earliest days of the Restoration of devotion to our Lady at Walsingham. It is contained in the first Pilgrims' Manual, that of 1928. By using it, we link ourselves with Fr Hope Patten, Fr Fynes Clinton, and all the heroes, lay and clerical, male and female, to whom we owe the modern form of this devotion within our Anglican Patrimony.

I am not willingly negative; indeed, I would not deny the propriety of a rich diversity of approaches to Marian devotion. I don't regard it as my job to criticise others and to disparage their own initiatives and to snarl at anybody who does things differently from the exact way I would do them myself. Nor would I sneer at all 'modern' devotions. But I do feel cautious about (ex.gr.) dropping "Tower of Ivory", and instead invoking "Woman of Faith"; instead of "Pray for us", saying "Keep us in mind".

I mention this not for the rather cheap motive of inviting you to groan at the inept 'modernity' of such things, but because what we are losing here is in fact something extremely important: the typological character of the old Litany. The titles of our Lady in that Litany include many of the  typological titles which Christian devotion, since at least the time of the Council of Ephesus, has discovered in the Old Testament as pointers to the Mother of the Incarnate Word.

Typology is discerning in the Old Testament the Figure of Christ and his Mother and the events of their lives, so that the Old Testament passage is the Type and the New Testament Figure or event is the Antitype. Typology is the central way in which the Great Tradition of both East and West has appropriated the Old Testament. It goes back to the New Testament texts themselves: Christ as the New Adam ... and see I Corinthians 10:1-11 ... and look at I Peter 3:20-21 ... etc.etc..  

Typology is part of the fundamental Grammar of the Faith; something even deeper than dogma.

Yesterday ... the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross ... the liturgical texts reminded us that the Lifting up of the Son of Man on the Cross is the Antitype of which the Lifting up of the serpent in the desert was the Type (Numbers 21:4-9; S John 3:13-17; S John 12:32).

I know that most laity have not been taught about Typology; this is because the Clergy weren't taught it either; and that is because there were so much more important things for them to be taught in seminary (the Synoptic Problem... the inauthenticity of most of S Paul's letters ...)*. But having the Lorettan Litany displaced by a modernist 'relevant' formula devoid of Typology brings home the radical impoverishment of current Catholic culture; the loss within it of both Tradition and of Holy Scripture.

The Catholic Church needs an Edward Bouverie Pusey, and a John Mason Neale, redivivi. Come to think of it, perhaps that is precisely what God has raised up the Ordinariates for.

*None of my strictures apply to the admirable Fr John Hemer, of Allen Hall, who understands perfectly about Typology!

11 comments:

Tom Broughton said...

Regarding Our Lady of Loretto, do you honestly believe that angelic beings transported her house from the Holy Land all the way to Italy?

Scribe said...

Thank you for this, Father. Many years ago, in my Anglican days, we regularly said the Litany of Loretto after Evensong, or during Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. Here in Liverpool, where Catholics go to Mass for all feasts of Our Lady, I have known my parish church to be packed to the doors, with bank after bank of votive candles burning before the Miraculous Picture in the Lady Chapel. But not once have we said the Litany of Loretto on these occasions, though we do manage to sing one of the Redemptorist hymns to the Mother of God. I sometimes imagine how wonderful it would be to hear 'pray for us, pray for us, thundering out from the assembled faithful.I don't suppose I ever will; but it is a beautiful litany, sadly missed. I am still so thankful to the Anglican clergy who introduced me to the Litany of Loretto.

Br. Edmund said...

I recommend the litanies of the Holy Virgin, of the Order of Preachers...
(A comment about it: https www english op org godzdogz beware-the-litanies-of-the-dominicans)

LITANIAE B. MARIAE VIRGINIS AB ORDINE PREDICATORIBUS RECEPTAE

Hic infra praebetur unum ex formulariis quo Litaniae traduntur B. Marie Virginis ab Ordine receptae et adhuc in multis Provinciis adhibitm.
In locutionibus et forma, invocationes istae exemplum praebent pietatis Medii Evi necnon devotionis Orientis et Occidentis.
Iuxta chronicas quasdam, recentiores primitivis Fratribus, nonnumquam litaniae istae agnitae sunt quasi illae quas Humbertus de Romans et Capitulum generale anni 1256 praeceperunt pro necessitatibus Ordinis (MOPH 3, 1898, pp. 82-83), quamvis textus Capituli expresse non dicat quae Litaniae essent dicendae.
Textus sequens offertur ad libitum pro sodalium Ordinis communi utilitate. Eius adaptatio in linguam vernaculam, ut pro formulariis eiusdem generis, magna libertate fieri poterit et in locutionibus vertendis et in invocationibus consociandis.

(Firt part)

Br. Edmund said...

(Second part)
Kyrie, eléison. Kyrie, eléison
Christe, eléison. Christe, eleison
Kyrie, eléison. Kyrie, eléison
Christe, audi nos. Christe, audi nos
Christe, exáudi nos. Christe, exáudi nos
Pater de caelis Deus, miserére nobis
Fili Redémptor mundi Deus, miserére nobis
Spiritus Sancte Deus, miserére nobis
Sancta Trinitas, unus Deus, miserére nobis

Sancta Maria Mater Christi sanctissima, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Dei Génetrix Virgo, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Mater innupta, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Mater invioláta, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Virgo virginum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Virgo perpétua, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria grátia Dei piena, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria aetérni Regis filia, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Christi Mater et Sponsa, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Spiritus Sancti templum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria caelórum Regina, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Angelórum Domina, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria scala Dei, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria porta Paradisi, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria nostra Mater et Dómina, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria nostra spes vera, ora pro nobis

Br. Edmund said...

(Third part)

Sancta Maria nova mater, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria ómnium fidélium fides, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria cáritas Dei perfécta, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria imperátrix nostra, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria fons dulcédinis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria mater aetérni Principis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria mater veri consilii, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria mater verae fídei, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria nostra resurréctio, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria per quam renovátur omnis creatura, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria génerans aetérnum Lumen, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria ómnia portántem portans, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria virtus divinae Incarnationis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria cubìle thesauri caeléstis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria génerans factórem ómnium, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria consilii caeléstis arcánum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria nostra salus vera, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria thesaurus fidélium, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria pulchérrima Dómina, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria iris plena laetítia, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria mater veri gáudii, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria iter nostrum ad Dóminum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria advocátrix nostra, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria stella caeli claríssima, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria praeclárior luna, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria solem lumine vincens, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria aetérni Dei Mater, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria delens ténebras aetérnae noctis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria delens chyrógraphum nostrae perditiónis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria fons verae sapiéntiae, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria lumen rectae sciéntiae, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria inaestimábile gáudium nostrum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria praemium nostrum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria caeléstis pátriae desidérium, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria spéculum divinae contemplatiónis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria ómnium Beatórum beatissima, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria omni laude dignissima, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria clementissima Domina, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria consolátrix ad te confugiéntium, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria plena pietáte, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria omni dulcédine superabundans, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria pulchritudo Angelorum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria flos Patriarchárum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria humilitas Prophetárum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria thesaurus Apostolórum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria glorificátio Sacerdótum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria decus Virginum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria castitátis lilium, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria super omnes féminas benedicta, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria reparátio omnium perditórum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria laus ómnium iustórum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria secretórum Dei cónscia, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria sanctissima ómnium feminárum, ora pro nobis

Br. Edmund said...

(Final)
Sancta Maria praeclaríssima Domina, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria margarita caeléstis Sponsi, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria palátium Christi, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria immaculáta Virgo, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria templum Dómini, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria glória Jerusalem, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria laetitia Israel, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria filia Dei, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Sponsa Christi amantissima, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria stella maris, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria diadéma in cápite summi Regis, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria omni honóre dignissima, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria omni dulcédine plena, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria regni caeléstis méritum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria caeléstis vitae iánua, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria porta clausa et patens, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria per quam intrátur ad Dóminum, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria immarcescibilis rosa, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria omni mundo pretiósior, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria omni thesáuro desiderabilior, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria áltior caelo, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Angelis mundior, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria Archangelórum laetitia, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria ómnium Sanctórum exsultátio, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria honor, et laus, et glória, et fiducia nostra, ora pro nobis
Sancta Maria exténde manum tuam et tange cor nostrum, ut illumines
et líberes nos peccatóres, ora pro nobis
Filia Dei, Maria, nos réspice
Fília Ióachim, Maria, nos dilige
Filia Annae, Maria, nos suscipe
Agna Dei, tu porta spei, porta nos ad Filium
Agna Dei, nos iungas ei, virginale lilium
Agna Dei, da requiéi regnum post exílium

Pater noster – Ave Maria.

V. Ora pro nobis, Sancta Dei Génetrix.
Ut digni efficiámur promissiónibus Christi.

V. Dignáre me laudáre te, Virgo sacráta.
Da mihi virtutem contra hostes tuos.

V. Dómine, exáudi oratiónem meam.
Et clamor meus ad te véniat.

Oratio

Oremus
Defénde, qaesumus, Dómine Deus, intercedénte beata et gloriósa Dei Genetrice Maria cum
ómnibus Sanctis tuis, nostram ab omni adversitáte Domnum et Congregatiónem, et ah hóstium
tuére cleménter insidiis.
Per Christum Dóminum nostrum.
Amen.

Matthew said...

Splendid litany, of whose origin and usage I would be interested to know more. Unfortunately the litany to which Br. Edmund provides a link (https www english op org godzdogz beware-the-litanies-of-the-dominicans) is a different one -- a litany of the Dominican saints. (That also might be of interest.)

Woody said...

In this episode of The Young Tractarians, I believe that typology is also addressed.

https://theyoungtractarians.wordpress.com/2019/08/24/season-2-episode-4/

Father Stephen Schumacher said...

I'm very glad to hear you say that "Typology is part of the fundamental Grammar of the Faith; something even deeper than dogma." I'm coming more and more to realize that typology is the fundamental mode by which a Christian interprets the Scriptures: without typology, we understand nothing (cf. the Ethiopian Eunuch). Without faith, anyone can derive whatever dogma he wishes from the Scriptures (in this, the Scriptures are much like statistics, which say whatever the one using them wishes them to say). But the faith recognizes in the Scriptures the immutable Word which wrote them, and brings the reader to conform himself to that Word, rather than contorting the Word to his own interpretation. Typology is the fundamental Christian hermeneutic for understanding the Scriptures, given to us by Christ Himself ("Beginning from Moses and all the prophets, He interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself"), and so typology must be prior to dogma, if we want to have right doctrine.

Amateur Brain Surgeon said...

Regarding Our Lady of Loretto, do you honestly believe that angelic beings transported her house from the Holy Land all the way to Italy?

Dear Tom. Yes. But first, it went to Tersatto, then near Ancona, then to a forest near Recananati, then to Mount Prodo

Have you heard of Professor Giorgio Nicolini and his research?

There are prolly many scientific minded men who scoff at such actions but, remember, less than 50% of all "scientific" studies are capable of replication which means that we ought scoff at scientists

Robin said...

This is not directly related to Our Lady of Loreto but I have a question about Marian observances and hope someone can help. Granted that the Nativity of Our Lady and her Immaculate Conception are connected by being 9 months apart- observance of which came first and why the 8th of September and December and not another day of the month? Can anyone help please.
Robin Davies