WDTPRS: 3rd Sunday after Pentecost (1962 Missale Romanum)

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What Does the Prayer Really Say?   3rd Sunday after Pentecost (1962 Missale Romanum)

I have good news and bad news. 

First, the good news.  A kind contributor to the WDTPRS blog (wdtprs.com) sent a notice that in England, in the magnificent Winchester Cathedral (Anglican) on Saturday 21 June there will be a Pontifical Mass in the Extraordinary (“Tridentine”) form.  Fascinating, no?  It seems that some Anglican members of the world-famous Choir at Winchester Cathedral want to have a Mass in thanksgiving for the Pope Benedict’s Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum, which derestricted the pre-Conciliar form of Holy Mass.  The Dean and Cathedral Chapter were all in favor and agreed. His Excellency the Catholic Bishop of Portsmouth, Most Reverend Crispian Hollis agreed as well.  So the Cathedral Choir will be singing a polyphonic Mass with Gregorian chant. The celebrant will be the former Abbot of the Catholic Abbey of Belmont, Laurence Hemming.

This is what I call true ecumenical dialogue!

On the other hand, on 18 May there was to be a Pontifical High Mass with the 1962 Missale Romanum in the Catholic Cathedral in Cardiff, Wales arranged by the Latin Mass Society.  However, the Mass was cancelled at the last moment because the Dean of the Cathedral, suddenly insisted that there be a female server in the sanctuary.  A lot of people were put out and many came, even in busses, from far away, to find the usual scheduled Mass.  I am told there were several hundred people showed up for a Mass that is usually attended by only about 40 people.  There are a lot of hurt feelings and anger over this being expressed on the WDTPRS blog.  It may very well be that the Church’s present law does not strictly forbid females to substitute for duly installed acolytes to serve at Mass, however, this so flies in the face of the sentiments of the people who were hoping for that Pontifical Mass as to stagger the imagination. It is hard to grasp how callous the Dean was in insisting on this oddity, which was hurtful to everyone.

Another very odd thing to grasp is the recent edict of His Excellency Most Reverend Robert Brom, Bishop of San DiegoHe issued to his priests a memo about the use of the Latin language and, obviously, the implementation of Summorum Pontificum.  Some of the highlights of the memo are that sacraments cannot be given with the older forms in the Rituale Romanum to people who are not parishioners of that particular parish.  I guess that means that Father has to ask for i.d.’s and check them against the parish database before absolving them of their sins, anointing them when they are dying, or marrying and baptizing.  Perhaps they will stop them at the door of the church?  In any event, no such restriction is in Summorum Pontificum. Also, a Latin in the Liturgy Committee is being established to authorize if priests are “competent” to use Latin or say Mass in the older rite.  May we therefore expect that priests will be examined for competency to celebrate in the Novus Ordo as well?  In any language?  I think we might find interesting results if we started testing priests about the meaning of texts or the rubrics in the Novus Ordo.  So, get this:  “Competency to celebrate the Mass or other sacraments in Latin will not be presumed but verified by the Latin in the Liturgy Committee before any such celebrations are attempted…. Pastors will consult with the Latin in the Liturgy Committee before they schedule Mass in the extraordinary form or other sacraments according to the older ritual.”  Speaking strictly about the TLM, the memo says that priests (assuming they are so authorized) may celebrate privately the older form of Mass “in churches or chapels only with permission of the appropriate authority, and may not advertise these private celebrations.”  Does Summorum Pontificum not also apply to the Diocese of San Diego?  Priests would still need permission of the bishop, or whomever, to say Mass privately in a church or chapel.  Furthermore, “Permission of the Bishop is needed by any priest who wishes to preside at a celebration of Mass according to the Roman Missal of 1962 or at a celebration of the other Sacraments according to older rites outside of a parish church, for example, in chapels. … Permission of the Bishop is also required for individuals or groups of the faithful who desire interparochial or non-parish-based celebrations of Mass according to the Roman Missal of 1962 or celebrations of the other Sacraments according to older rites.”

It is as if Summorum Pontificum didn’t exist.  You would have thought this sort of thing was over by now.  After all, Pope Benedict became Supreme Pontiff in 2005 and this document went into force on 14 September 2007. 

That said, let’s move to today’s …

COLLECT: (1962 Missale Romanum):
Protector in te sperantium, Deus,
sine quo nihil est validum, nihil sanctum:
multiplica super nos misericordiam tuam;
ut, te rectore, te duce,
sic transeamus per bona temporalia,
ut non amittamus aeterna.

There is a very pleasant alliteration in lines 2-3 of the collect. We can find a nice pair of pairs: nihil validum, nihil sanctum and some great ablative absolutes te rectore, te duce.

Where does prayer really come from?  The first part, Protector in te sperantium deus, seems to be a fairly common introductory phrase in ancient Roman prayersBut after that, we find the whole prayer as it appears in the 1962MR in the Liber sacramentorum Gellonensis or Gellone Sacramentary, which a couple weeks ago I reminded you was one of the Frankish “newer Gelasian” type sacramentaries, an attempt at a complete service book in the late 8th century, and in the Liber sacramentorum Romanae ecclesiae or Book of the sacraments of the Church of Rome, which is another “Gelasian” type book.  However, the snipping and pasting experts employed by the Council’s Consilium hacked off the end of the Pian edition’s ancient prayer and for the Pauline version of the Missale Romanum, tacked on a chunk of another ancient prayer in the Veronese Sacramentary or Leonine Sacramentary or for good measure Codex sacramentorum vetus Romanae ecclesiae a sancto Leone papa I confectus, for the month of July, perhaps on the 13th of the month, and perhaps as part of a preface formula: Vere dignum: qui mutabilitatem nostram ad incommutabilia ita iustus et benignus erudis, ut nec fragilitatem destituas et coherceas insolentes: quo pariter instituti pia conversatione et caelestibus sacramentis, sic bonis praetereuntibus nunc utimur, ut iam possimus inherere perpetuis. They even tinkered with that.  In the Novus Ordo Missale this prayer is used on the 17th Sunday of Ordinary Time.

COLLECT: (1970 Missale Romanum):
Protector in te sperantium, Deus,
sine quo nihil est validum, nihil sanctum:
multiplica super nos misericordiam tuam;
ut, te rectore, te duce,
sic bonis transeuntibus nunc utamur,
ut iam possimus inhaerere mansuris.

Protector is, according to our always valid Lewis & Short Dictionary, from protego, meaning “to cover before, or in front, cover over” and obviously also “to shield from danger” as well as things like “put a protecting roof over”.  Amitto is “to lose” in the sense of “let slip”.  A Latin dux is a “leader, guide”, and also “commander, general-in-chief”.  This is why Benito Mussolini was in Italian called “il Duce”.  A rector is pretty much the same as the first sense of dux, but it can also be a “helmsman” or “governor”.  Interestingly enough, gubernator means “helmsman” also, while an English “governor” is a moderator.

St. Andrew’s Bible Missal (1962):
O God, guardian of those who trust in you,
without whom nothing is strong, nothing holy,
increase your mercy towards us.
With you as our ruler and guide,
may we pass through the good things of this world,
so as not to lose those of the world to come.

LITERAL VERSION (1962MR)
O God, protector of those hoping in You,
without whom nothing is efficacious, nothing holy,
multiply Your mercy upon us,
so that, You being our guide and leader,
we may pass through temporal goods in such a way
that we do not lose the eternal.


We have the image of a people asking God to cover them over abundantly with mercy.  We are acknowledging how we need a roof over our heads to protect us, so we want God’s mercy upon us. Also, since a protector is something or someone that covers us in front, God is our shield before us.  In His mercy He guards us from the attacks we face as soldiers in the Church Militant.

We must never forget that we are members of the Church Militant, the part of the Church which is in the world, on the march, as a pilgrim people.  We must be clear in our minds that the Lord says this world has its prince (cf. John 10:31 and 14:30).  Satan and his fallen angels desire our everlasting damnation and agony with them in Hell.  Jesus broke their power over us, but we still for a time are in this world which they dominate. We are living in a state of “already, but not yet.”

As soldiers traveling through enemy territory we need strong shields, a sure leader to set our feet on the right path out of the danger zone, a sturdy roof over us when we rest, some way to grasp what is holy and what is deception. God is the one without whom nothing is worthwhile or holy. He must provide for us all that we need on the march.  Because of the wounds to our nature from the Fall, we are susceptible to the passing things of this world and vulnerable to the attacks of hell.  We need shielding, protection, so that we are not overly mired or stained, lest we lose track of our pilgrim route to heaven.

LITERAL TRANSLATION (1970MR):

O God, protector of those believing in You,
without whom nothing is efficacious, nothing holy,
multiply Your mercy upon us,
so that, You being our guide and leader,
we may so use things that pass away
as to be able to cleave to those that endure
.

Notice the slightly different emphasis.  This version also contrasts the passing things of this world with those that do not pass away.  This version also stresses that we must cling to, or not let slip, eternal things, so that we lose heaven.  However, whereas the older version seems to take a position of suspicion about the dangerous nature of worldly, or temporal, things, the newer version indicates that we use them correctly.  The structure is ita with a result following in the subjunctive: in such a way that….   Lest anyone get their shift all in a twist about how the Novus Ordo version obviously reflects the dangerous modernism of the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, Gaudium et spes, remember that the final two lines are also essentially from an ancient prayer.  After all, our ancestors also were concerned actually to use the things of the world, which remain good.  They are bona temporalia.

Lame-Duck ICEL (1973 translation of the 1970MR):
God our Father and protector,
without you nothing is holy,
nothing has value.
Guide us to everlasting life
by helping us to use wisely
the blessings you have given to the world.

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14 Responses to WDTPRS: 3rd Sunday after Pentecost (1962 Missale Romanum)

  1. michigancatholic says:

    I think that anyone who can pronounce the Latin properly and manage the rubrics so that the rather well-read Traditionalists that are always around (just check the responses in this blog!) are happy with them is indeed qualified to say the Latin Mass.

    On the other hand, I’d like a test to see if N.O. priests are qualified to say the N.O. because apparently many of them are clearly not. Some of them can’t get it straight for anything and botch it up every time they try, mangling the liturgical laws from Rome every single time!!! Some of them have amazingly simplistic or stupid conceptions of what mass is supposed to be about and yet, are able to spread those ideas with impunity. You’d think the bishops would care………

  2. Dave Deavel says:

    I thought Laurence Hemming was the Deacon who has the new book out?
    Are there two English Laurence Hemmings involved in liturgy?

  3. Ioannes Andreades says:

    The question is ultimately whether the purpose of divine mercy is to help us use transitory goods in such a way that we cling to those that endure or to help us pass through them in such a way that we don’t lose eternal goods. The former (1970) seems unnecessarily complicated and less obviously the general goal of mercy as opposed to the goals of counsel, wisdom, etc.; the latter (1962) seems more like what I’d like to pray for in terms of the fruit of mercy.

  4. stopthecouncil says:

    Laurence Beer is the former Abbot of Belmont. L~ Hemming is a deacon.

  5. AS to the appropriateness of the 1970 version of the prayer, I immediately thought of the words of our Lord in Luke 16:

    And I say to you: Make unto you friends of the mammon of iniquity; that when you shall fail, they may receive you into everlasting dwellings. 10 He that is faithful in that which is least, is faithful also in that which is greater: and he that is unjust in that which is little, is unjust also in that which is greater. 11 If then you have not been faithful in the unjust mammon; who will trust you with that which is the true? 12 And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s; who will give you that which is your own? 13 No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or he will hold to the one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.

    which would seem to be in accord with the idea of using the goods of this world correctly as a means to attain to heaven.

  6. Maria says:

    Word on the street here in Dallas(ish) is that the bishop requested the same sort of panel of priests to evaluate the fitness of any prospective TLM-sayers. No proof, though.

  7. Warren Anderson says:

    As the notion has already been intimated, the establishment of an examination process must necessary include a response in the form of a question: “If us (who celebrate the EF), why not the rest (who celebrate the OF)? I don’t see anything wrong with quality control. Perhaps the example of Benedict XVI might serve as a better form of “professional development”, as-it-were: celebrate well and involve qualified MCs (new Marini). In other words, set a standard and insist on faithfulness to the rubrics. In every diocese there should be an annual workshop (an annual diocesan convention?) for priests (and musicians and servers and…) that focusses on authentic (OF) liturgy: history/meaning of ritual language and action, practice and strategies for improving liturgical worship in parishes (recruitment to ministries, liturgical formation, etc.). At a series of masses, the bishop can model the authentic form to which he expects his priests conform. If a priest wants or needs to celebrate the EF, then surely he can enter a program and receive a notice of accreditation from one of the established groups (FSSP, Cantius, etc.) in communion with Rome. He can then present the note to his bishop and the need for oversight is satisfied. These kinds of encounters can be win/win situations if people avoid confrontation and focus on the possibilities: 1) richer understanding of Catholic spirituality; 2) avoidance of abuse and confusion; 3) less confrontation between priests and laity.

  8. vincentius says:

    Why is it thst when I was 8 yrs old, I and 20 of my inner-city peers learned all the latin prayers and rubrics needed to serve Mass ( in two rites in my parish) in a few months, and now a bishop requires motivated priests w/ at least 4 yrs of post-grad training to take a test of competency?
    This is just the remnant of the “sine caritate” attitude the reformers used to squelch tradition since the late 60s.
    Fr.Z-it would be great to have a thread of readers’ anecdotes about themselves or loved ones who were disillusioned or lost faith or lost vocations due to this “my way or the highway” attitude. Thank God the war is over- they just haven’t all come out of the jungle yet.

  9. Isaac says:

    Lucky for us, who don’t use the ICEL Breviary for OF, this is the translation in the British Version for 17th Sunday of the Year:

    Lord God, protector of those who hope in you,
    without whom nothing is strong, nothing holy,
    support us always with your love.
    Guide us so to use the good things of this world,
    that even now we may hold fast to what endures for ever.

    Now, why doesn’t everyone just ditch the collect prayers by ICEL and use these until the new translation comes out? The ones above have been around since 1973 in the Commonwealth World. No wonder I don’t quite mind the OF Breviary in English. It’s just 10 times better than ICEL anytime.

    Isaac.

  10. Maureen says:

    “In every diocese there should be an annual workshop (an annual diocesan convention?) for priests (and musicians and servers and…)”

    Um. How small are dioceses in your part of the world?

    My diocese is not particularly large, geographically or numerically, for a US diocese. But what you’re proposing would entail getting hundreds of priests and thousands of people together. Said convention could not be held on the weekend without depriving hundreds of thousands of Mass on the Lord’s Day. Laypeople can’t generally take off all week; and you would be asking a lot of folks who don’t get paid for church work to give up their vacations and spend a lot of money on hotel and gas and food.

    You can sorta see this for kids in the summer as a camp.

  11. Stephen says:

    As one of your Anglican readers I always find your collect translations most illuminating and a great help to prayer. You might be interested in the translation of this collect from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer. It is used as the collect for the Fourth Sunday after Trinity.

    O God, the protector of all that trust in thee, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy: Increase and multiply upon us thy mercy; that, thou being our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we finally lose not the things eternal. Grant this, O heavenly Father, for Jesus Christ’s sake our Lord. Amen

    It always seems to me that that this translation has a most beautiful cadence, which help one to memorise it.

    Dont’ forget to pray for us some times.

  12. Fr Anon says:

    In the liturgical calendar of the usus antiquior, this past Sunday’s Mass was slated to be that of the Third Sunday After Pentecost. But if I read nn. 356-361 of the General Rubrics to the Missale Romanum 1962 correctly, it would seem that for pastoral reasons, the priest could have instead offered the Mass of the “external solemnity” of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, which feast occurred on the previous Friday. This is ostensibly what the FSSP and the ICKSP in the USA did yesterday, as well as others. Yet my bishop tells me that, no, this was permitted only in 1962, when the Feast of the Sacred Heart coincided with the Feast of the Apostles Peter and Paul.

    Can someone clarify this for me?

  13. Josh says:

    Fr. Anon,

    Concerning external solemnities, the Sacred Heart is listed at n. 358a as having external solemnity by right on the Third Sunday after Pentecost. This is a perpetual situation. The same right to external solemnity was granted to the United States for Corpus Christi by indult of Leo XIII (though it may have been rescinded later).

    It makes no sense to say this only obtained in 1962, since that is not specified, and furthermore, the rubrics were promulgated not in 1962, but in 1960. It is also unlikely that a single, particular instance of occurrence would even be addressed in the body of the rubrics, which deals with the general, not the particular.

  14. Greg Smisek says:

    “Pastors will consult with the Latin in the Liturgy Committee before they schedule Mass in the extraordinary form or other sacraments according to the older ritual.”

    Do you suppose they used tea leaves or a crystal ball to establish this fact?

    It reminds me of a rule no longer in force at a certain seminary:

    “Seminarians will not wear cassocks.”

    Of course, this was simply an untrue statement. Seminarians in fact did wear cassocks, despite the future indicative statement.