NEWFLASH: A new Sacred Congregation to be formed

This came up in the comments of another thread, but I thought it would be a good idea put it also in its own post. 

I have long thought, were I to be elected Pope sometime soon, that I would right away form a new Sacred Congregation, the Sacra Congregatio pro Sancta Porta Converrenda or "Sacred Congregation for the Dusting of the Holy Door."   I would summon a number of high level clerics to Rome for this important office. Since there are four Major Patriarcal Basilicas with Holy Doors there could be quite a few prelates involved!  It could be fun!  Sort of like the changing of the guard each day at Buckingham Palace.  The bell would ring, they would file out in their proper choir dress.  Very few would be smiling, I think, but that’s okay.  This is serious business after all.  The prelates who are also masons could wear their aprons, which seems more than appropriate.

Psalms would be chanted in the processions, such as Psalm 22:11-22:

ANTIPHON: Ipse enim novit plasmationem nostram recordatus est quia pulvis sumus

11: Be not far from me, for trouble is near and there is none to help.
12: Many bulls encompass me, strong bulls of Bashan surround me;
13: they open wide their mouths at me, like a ravening and roaring lion.
14: I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint; my heart is like wax, it is melted within my breast;
15: my strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue cleaves to my jaws; thou dost lay me in the dust of death.
16: Yea, dogs are round about me; a company of evildoers encircle me; they have pierced my hands and feet —
17: I can count all my bones — they stare and gloat over me;
18: they divide my garments among them, and for my raiment they cast lots.
19: But thou, O LORD, be not far off! O thou my help, hasten to my aid!
20: Deliver my soul from the sword, my life from the power of the dog!
21: Save me from the mouth of the lion, my afflicted soul from the horns of the wild oxen!
22: I will tell of thy name to my brethren; in the midst of the congregation I will praise thee:

Or even Psalm 90:

ANTIPHON: Posuerunt in caelo os suum et lingua eorum deambulavit in terra.

1: LORD, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations.
2: Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting thou art God.
3: Thou turnest man back to the dust, and sayest, "Turn back, O children of men!"
4: For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, or as a watch in the night.
5: Thou dost sweep men away; they are like a dream, like grass which is renewed in the morning:
6: in the morning it flourishes and is renewed; in the evening it fades and withers.
7: For we are consumed by thy anger; by thy wrath we are overwhelmed.
8: Thou hast set our iniquities before thee, our secret sins in the light of thy countenance.
9: For all our days pass away under thy wrath, our years come to an end like a sigh.
10: The years of our life are threescore and ten, or even by reason of strength fourscore; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away.
11: Who considers the power of thy anger, and thy wrath according to the fear of thee?
12: So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
13: Return, O LORD! How long? Have pity on thy servants!
14: Satisfy us in the morning with thy steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
15: Make us glad as many days as thou hast afflicted us, and as many years as we have seen evil.
16: Let thy work be manifest to thy servants, and thy glorious power to their children.
17: Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish thou the work of our hands upon us, yea, the work of our hands establish thou it.

Since in those big basilicas in can be a long way from the sacristy to the Holy Door, they are going to need lots of texts.  And during the actual cleaning they should probably chant over and over: Memento, homo, quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverterisMemento, homo, quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverterisMemento, homo, quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverteris….

Someone suggested that there should be a solemn motto over the door of the offices of the Congregation.  It would have to be in Latin, however.  Something like, CAVE PORTAM EXIENS!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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One Comment

  1. Andrew says:

    Homo. Humus.
    Fama. Fumus.
    Finis. Cinis.

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