26 November 2020

Strike them down, Lord, and lay them low. (1)

The Leonine Prayers at the foot of the Altar after Mass represent a distictively nineteenth century way of dealing with a perceived need to seek urgent divine interventions in particular necessities. And, of course, there was always the possibility of saying a Votive or of adding additional Votive 'commemorations' to the proper prayers of the Day. (Not to mention the possibilities offered by the Litany form ... how very flexible our Western Liturgy has been.) 

But there was once a practice which brought such ad hoc impetrations into the very heart of the Liturgy itself. Surviving texts look rather like responses to the occupation of Terra Sancta by Islamic forces. And, in terms of liturgical logic, they may not be a million miles away from the motive ascribed by Canon Arthur Couratin to the inclusion of Intercessions in the Byzantine Anaphora at the point they now occupy there; i.e., we secure the Presence of Almighty God upon the Altar so that we can then make use of It to tell Him what we want.

Thus, at Sarum. on certain days, the community was prostrate after the Santus; then, after the Libera nos and before the Pax ...; Psalms 78, 66, and 20 were recited 'in prostratione'; followed by Kyrie ... and Pater ..., versicles and responses; and three collects expressing this intention: ut Terram quam Unigenitus Filius tuus proprio sanguine consecravit, de manibus inimicorum crucis Christi eripiens, restituas cultui Christiano ...

A second part of this will describe the ancient Carmelite devotions.

In the splendid  Altar-ready Sarum Missal produced this year by a learned and devout priest, you will find this provision on pages 330-331. I also gratefully thank Gregory diPippo for setting me on this track.

Psalms are numbered according to the Vulgate. 


neilmac said...

Father, you mention the altar-ready Sarum Missal; I should be grateful for a reference to the editor/compiler and perhaps a note as to where it might be purchased.

Unknown said...

high time to re-introduce it, methinks!

Kenneth said...

Dear Father,
I am very interested in the Sarum Missal which was published recently. Would you be so kind as to forward the Priest's name so I might then purchase it?
With deep appreciation for your excellent site, I remain,
Yours in Christ,
Kenneth Kafoed

Matthew F Kluk said...

An excellent post!Thank you Father!

FrB. said...

And where is that Altar-ready missal to be found?

Pastor in Monte said...

Hopefully the Missal will be available soon, when one or two technical snags have been resolved. The material has been reorganised somewhat to make it familiar to anyone used to the Extraordinary Form Missal.

Josephus Muris Saliensis said...

It ill-behoves one to criticise the host in someone else’s house, but one cannot help wondering, bearing in mind our host’s proven ability for interesting and complex online research, whether what undoubtedly started ouf as an inability, is not perhaps turning into a slight affectation, namely the inability (or perhaps refusal) ever to provide a URL link. Mind you, the rigidity of this policy does engender a certain admiration!

Have I endangered my welcome here?