WDTPRS: Friday 1st Week of Lent – Post communionem (2002MR)

We continue our project of looking at the Post communions of Lent:

Friday – 1st Week of Lent

This prayer was more or less the Postcommunio on the 1st Sunday in Lent in the 1962MR.  Changes were made.  It is an ancient prayer, however, to be found in various manuscripts of the Gelasian and Gregorian sacramentaries.  The ancient form, however, has libatio for refectio, as does the 1962MR.

Tui nos, Domine, sacramenti refectio sancta restauret,
et, a vetustate purgatos,
in mysterii salutaris faciat transire consortium.

We have seen refectio before, from reficio.  The more ancient prayer had libatio, which is "a drink-offering, libation".  This is found in the Vulgate in the Old Testament in Num 28:24.  Think of Genesis 35 when Jacob poured a drink offering on the pillar he set up.  A libation offering was common to all ancient cultures. 

In Isaiah 53 the "Suffering Servant" pours out his life as a sacrifice.

I think the cutter/snipper experts of the Consilium decided that libatio was not merely too "pagan" in sound, but also too sacrificial.  They chose refectio, an "eating, refeshment".  They chose a "filling" rather than an "emptying".

The older libatio helps us make better sense of the purgatos which follows.

Consortium comes from the preposition cvm (“with”) and sors (“any thing used to determine chances”). Sors is “fate, destiny, chance, fortune, condition, share, part.” It thus means also a “community of goods” and by extension “fellowship, participation, society.” A consortium is a situation in which you have “cast your lot” with a group and with whom you are sharing a common outcome or fate. We hear the word consortium near the end of the Roman Canon when we are praying to have a share in the lot, the reward, of the great martyrs named therein.

The concept of vetustas, which also appeared in our Advent prayers fairly often, refers to the "state of oldness", which pertains to the "old man" afflicted by the sin of our First Parents

May the holy refreshment of Your Sacrament restore us, O Lord,
and, let it bring us, having been cleansed of the old state of being,
over into the sharing of the saving mystery.

That consortium is hard to get into English with out a circumlocution.  It is meant to convery a sharing of company and condition with others of a similar lot.  In English we sometimes talk about "that lot" or "his lot" to describe a person and the sort of person he is.  In this case it is the company or lot of those whose lot it is to participate in the saving mystery that flows form the Passion and Resurrection of the Lord, sacramentally bestowed on us in the Eucharist. Participate in the Eucharist in the more perfect participation of reception of Communion, and you join the lot of the saved.
Daily Missal (Baronius Press, 2007):
May the holy reception of Thy Sacrament, O Lord,
so restore us that we may be purified from our former ways
and join the company of the redeemed.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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