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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Paschal Vigil on Papa Stronsay

Resurrexit sicut dixit!
 The Blessing of the Fire and Procession with the Paschal Candle
All the candles in the chapel are lit using the paschal fire
Exsúltet iam Angélica turba coelórum
exsúltent divína mystéria
et pro tanti Regis victória tuba ínsonet salutáris!
Let the angelic choirs of Heaven now rejoice
let the divine Mysteries rejoice
and let the trumpet of salvation sound forth the victory of so great a King!

During the Gloria the bells are triumphantly rung once again and the chapel is flooded with light as the Church joyfully proclaims the Glory of the Risen Lord.

Regina caeli, laetare, alleluia. 
Quia quem meruisti portare, alleluia. 
Resurrexit, sicut dixit, alleluia. 
Ora pro nobis Deum, alleluia!

The Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer wish you a blessed Easter

+ Deo Gratias et Mariae +

Friday, March 25, 2016

Holy Week IV: Good Friday

Holy mother pierce me through
In my heart each wound renew
Of my Saviour Crucified
Stations of the Cross on Papa Stronsay

At the sacred hour of 3pm the Solemn Ceremony of Good Friday was held in our chapel on Papa Stronsay

The Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to St John
Adoration of the Cross

+ Ecce lignum Crucis, in quo salus mundi pependit +
Venite, adoremus!

 The body of Our Lord is then carried in solemn procession to the sepulchre

Almighty and merciful God, who hast restored us by the Passion and Death of Thy Christ: preserve within us the work of Thy mercy; that by our entering into this mystery we may ever live devoutly. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Deo Gratias et Mariae +

Holy Week III: Missa in Coena Domini

Last night the Solemn High Mass of the Lord's Supper was celebrated on Papa Stronsay

The Confiteor

Fr Yousef Marie sings the Gospel according to St John

It was on this night that Our Lord left us His greatest gift in the Most Holy Sacrament; His Body and Blood. 

At the end of Holy Mass the Blessed Sacrament is taken to the Altar of Repose

After which is the stripping of the altar

Divisérunt sibi vestiménta mea: et super vestem meam misérunt sortem
They parted my garments amongst them; and upon my vesture they cast lots.

We then keep watch with Our Lord until midnight 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Holy Week II: Tenebrae + Mandatum

Ierusalem, Ierusalem, convertere ad Dominum Deum tuum +
Br Peter Mary sings the first Lamentation of Jeremias
At the end of every psalm a candle is extinguished on the "Tenebrae Hearse"

Ante diem festum Paschae, sciens Iesus, quia venit hora eius, ut tránseat ex hoc mundo ad Patrem: cum dilexísset suos, qui erant in mundo, in finem diléxit eos.

Before the festival-day of the Pasch, Jesus knowing that His hour was come, that He should pass out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world. He loved them unto the end.
Fr Magdala Maria reads the Gospel for the 'Mandatum'

Monday, March 21, 2016

St Enda of Aran

Today is the feast of St Enda of Aran, patriarch of Irish monasticism. It was St Enda who formally introduced monasticism to Ireland by founding a monastery on the isle of Aran which became, in the words of St Columba, the "Sun of all the West".

Numberless saints known only to Our Lord lived and died on Aran; learning from that great monastic school all that was necessary to lead a holy life of virtue. 

"Hearing how blessed Enda lived apart,
Amid the sacred caves of Ara-mhor,
And how beneath his eye, spread like a chart,
Lay all the isles of that remotest shore;
And how he had collected in his mind
All that was known to man of the Old Sea
I left the Hill of Miracles behind,
And sailed from out the shallow, sandy Leigh. 

Oft, as we paced that marble-covered land,
Would blessed Enda tell me wondrous tales--
How, for the children of his love, the hand
Of the Omnipotent Father never fails--
How his own sister, standing by the side
Of the great sea, which bore no human bark,
Spread her light cloak upon the conscious tide,
And sailed thereon securely as an ark."
- Denis Florence McCarthy, 'The Voyage of St Brendan'


Sunday, March 20, 2016

Holy Week I: Palm Sunday

Hosanna filio David
The beginning of Holy Week
Palm Sunday

Fr Jean Marie blesses the palm branches on the altar

The branches are then distributed

Pueri Hebraeorum, portantes ramos olivarum, 
obviaverunt Domino, 
clamantes et dicentes: Hosanna in excelsis.
The Hebrew children bearing olive branches, 
went forth to meet the Lord, 
crying out and saying, Hosanna in the highest.

 A procession on Stronsay with blessed palms - a sign of victory over the world as the Holy Ghost promised by David, "Justus ut palma florebit".

Fr Jean Marie reads The Passion of  Our Lord Jesus Christ according to St Matthew.

We offer unto Thee, O Lord, the chalice of salvation, beseeching Thy clemency, that it may ascend before Thy divine Majesty, as a sweet savour, for our salvation, and for that of the whole world.

Deo gratias et Mariae! 

Sunday, March 13, 2016

But Jesus Hid Himself...

Our Lord hid Himself today from the fury of those who reject His claims to Divinity. These are the same who would scorn and mock Him upon the cross whilst He hid Himself again, but in a different manner. In the former He hides from them physically because His hour had not yet come, showing that He had full control over all that He was to accomplish but at the moment chosen by Him. The latter was the veiling of His Divinity whilst on the cross - suffering all that He would in order to prove His love for us. 


In this spirit Holy Mother Church enters into Passiontide. Veiling the physical statues and images that surround us and comfort us; and the spiritual joys that surround the Mass by omitting the Psalm 42 at the Foot of the Altar (specifically the response 'ad Deum qui laetificat juventutem meam') and the Gloria.

Instead on this day we have parts of Psalm 42 read at the Introit in the person of Christ who says, "ipsa me deduxerunt et adduxerunt in montem sanctum tuum et in tabernacula tua". What else is Calvary but the Holy Mountain of our Redemption? And what else this Tabernacle but the "greater and more perfect tabernacle" spoken of in today's Epistle?

Neither by the blood of goats, or of calves, but by his own blood, entered once into the holies, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and of oxen, and the ashes of an heifer being sprinkled, sanctify such as are defiled, to the cleansing of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who by the Holy Ghost offered himself unspotted unto God, cleanse our conscience from dead works, to serve the living God? - Hebrews 12-14

I will take the chalice of salvation, and call upon the Name of the Lord. Praising I will call upon the Lord, and I shall be saved from my enemies.

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