QUAERITUR: Mass texts for St. Elijah, Old Testament Prophet

Many of the great figures of the Old Testament are considered saints and have a day in the Roman liturgical book called the Roman Martyrology. I post about them on occasion.

The Martyrology says that when the day is clear on the regular calendar – id est there is not even an obligatory memorial – a saint of the day in the Martyrology can be selected.

Here is the entry for St. Elijah, prophet, in the Roman Martyrology:

2. Commemoratio sancti Eliae Thesbitae, qui propheta Domini in diebus Achab, regis Israel, Dei unici iura vinidicavit adversus infidelem populum tali animi robore, ut non modo Ioannem Baptistam, sed etiam Christum ipsum praefiguret; oracula scripta non reliquit, sed eius memoria fideliter servatur, praesertim in monte Carmelo.

In the older, traditional Roman calendar, I think we must use St. Jerome Emiliani.  In the newer calendar, I think we are freer, since there is only an optional memorial for St. Apollinaris.

Problem: Where to find the texts for Mass for St. Elijah?

Since the Carmelites venerate him, they have Mass texts.

Could Fr. Sven O’Brien use them at the diocesan parish of St. Ipsidipsy in Black Duck?

He could probably ask permission of the local Bishop of Black Duck.

In any event, here is the spiffy preface which a reader sent:


Preface of Our Father, S. Elijah the Prophet: Right indeed it is and just, proper and for our welfare, that we should always and everywhere give thanks to you, holy Lord, almighty Father, eternal God; and that we should triumphantly praise, bless, and proclaim you on this solemn feast of blessed Elijah, your Prophet and our father: who, at your word, arose like fire, closed the sky, raised the dead, smote the tyrants, killed the impious, and laid the foundations of the monastic life; who, fed with bread and drink by the ministry of an angel, walked in the strength of that food as far as the holy mountain; who was carried off in a whirlwind of fire, to return as a herald of the second coming of Jesus Christ our Lord; through whom your majesty is praised by the Angels and the Archangels, by the Cherubim too and the Seraphim, who lift up their endless hymn, day by day, with one voice singing: Holy… [Not my translation.]

Finally, the mention of Elijah and Carmelites prompts me to remind you to refresh your coffee supply with


Mystic Monk Coffee!

When you’ve hard a hard week of searching for Mass texts for Old Testament prophets until you look like Gandalf in the archives of Minas Tirith, you can still save the world from Sauron, and find your Mass formulary, by drinking lots of …

Mystic Monk Coffee.

Do you not care about finding that long-lost parchment?

Do you not care about … about the liturgy?

Is it possible that you don’t care about saving the liturgy and saving THE WORLD?!?

What would Gandalf do?  Would he order iced tea?!?   Actually, that sounds pretty good today.  The monks have tea, too.


Mystic Monk Coffee!

It’s swell!


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, Saints: Stories & Symbols and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Bruce says:

    “who, at your word, arose like fire, closed the sky, raised the dead, smote the tyrants, killed the impious,”

    I love it!

  2. APX says:

    Are these the same rules as in the EF when there is a votive Mass? Our priest told us it can be any saint and if there is no specific Mass, he just uses the common propers (ie: virgin, martyr, etc).

  3. Imrahil says:

    The preface sounds great. However, I don’t think it could be used outside an at least somewhat Carmelite setting – or at least the words “et Patris nostri” would have to be left out. No offense to the holy prophet intended, but while he is a great Prophet of God, and father of the Carmelite family, he is not (in a specific sense) Father of Christianity (the way this is applied to St. Abraham in the Roman Canon, or to St. Joseph).

  4. benedetta says:

    Hmm, yes a large tankard or stein of MM, either hot or iced, sounds excellent right about now.

  5. Father G says:

    This morning I celebrated Holy Mass in the OF in honor of St. Elijah the Prophet using the Common of Holy Men and Women. A Common of Prophets does not exist.

  6. Elizabeth D says:

    I have the Carmelite supplement to the Liturgy of the Hours. The Novus Ordo Carmelite collect for St Elijah (July 20, today) goes like this:

    Almighty, ever-living God,
    your prophet Elijah our Father
    lived always in your presence
    and was zealous for the honor due to your name.
    May we, your servants,
    always seek your face
    and bear witness to your love.
    We ask this through our Lord.

    (sic the capitalization of “Father” referring to Elijah; of course the observance of his feast is specific to the Carmelite family who regard him as founder in a sense)

  7. drforjc says:

    For Carmelites of the Ancient Observance (O.Carm.), it’s a Solemnity. For the Discalced Carmelites (O.C.D.) it is ranked as a Feast, since they regard St. John of the Cross as their Father.

  8. The Masked Chicken says:

    If St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross are the Holy Mother and Holy Father of the Discalced Carmelites, Elijah is their Holy Grandfather.

    The Chicken

  9. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    Thank you for this! Could you, or anyone else, recommend anything (online) for further reading about the history of the Roman Martyrology and its revisions? And is the current version online anywhere?

Comments are closed.