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Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Wednesday after the Fourth Week of Lent.

Wednesday "In Mediana" after the Fourth Week of Lent.
Station at St. Paul "in the opening of the ears".

(S. Paolo fuori le mura.)

Today's station is held at St. Paul's
because he is the prototype and model of catechumens,

on account of his conversion on the way to Damascus,

where he was blinded by the light from heaven.

The ceremony is also known as

in aperitione aurium
-in the opening of the ears-,
because the miracle which Christ worked upon the deaf man

was renewed in a spiritual sense upon the candidates for baptism,
to whom the Pontiff explained for the first time with solemn rites
the Creed, the Lord's Prayer and the beginning of the four Gospels.

Thus the ears of the catechumens,

deaf hitherto to the words of truth,

were opened at length to hear the tidings of eternal life.

The full ceremony is too long to be reproduced in this post.

We now give but one excerpt from the
Ordines Romani
(dating from about A.D. 650)

and found in Blessed Schuster's work
The Sacramentary.

Blessed Schuster consecrated bishop by Pope Pius XI.

Before the Catechumens are dismissed
they are given the following solemn explanation of the Our Father:


"The priest now gives an explanation of the Lord's Prayer:

"Our Father, who art in heaven.
"This is a cry of freedom and of perfect confidence. Let your conduct show that you are indeed sons of God, and brothers of Jesus Christ. For how can any man dare to call God his Father, unless he strives to do His will? Therefore, dearly beloved, endeavour to show yourselves worthy of this divine adoption, since it is written that as many as believed in Him were made worthy to become the sons of God.

"Hallowed by Thy name.
"This does not mean that God, Himself the source of all sanctity, may become holy because we acknowledge Him as holy; on the contrary, we ask that His Name may be sanctified in us, so that we, having become holy by means of His baptism, may always persevere in this purity of life.

"Thy kingdom come.
"God, whose dominion is without end, reigns for ever. Therefore, when we say, "Thy kingdom come," we ask that our kingdom may also come, that Messianic kingdom promised to us by God and bought by the Passion and the precious Blood of the Redeemer.

"Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
"That is to say, may Thy will be accomplished, and those things which Thou dost will in heaven be carried out by us here on earth.

"Give us this day our daily bread.
"By these words is meant our spiritual food. Our bread indeed is Christ, who said: 'I am the living bread which came down from heaven.' We speak of our daily bread because we must pray to be kept continually far from sin, in order to be worthy of the heavenly food.

"And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them who trespass against us.
"This precept teaches us that we cannot obtain pardon for our sins, unless we first forgive those who have sinned against us, for our Lord says in the Gospel: 'If you will not forgive men, neither will your Father forgive you your offences.'

"And lead us not into temptation.
"That is, let not the author of evil, the tempter, drive us into sin. Holy Scripture, indeed, says that it is not God who tempts us but the devil, against whom Christ tells us to watch and pray lest we enter into temptation.

"But deliver us from evil. Amen.
"This is added because as St. Paul says: 'You know not that which you should pray.' We must therefore pray the One and All-powerful God that He would give us strength to avoid those things into which our human weakness might lead us. Through Jesus Christ our Lord," etc.

Deacon: "Stand in order, be silent and attentive."

Priest: "You have heard, dearly beloved, the profound and sacred meaning of the Lord's Prayer. Go now and ponder it in your hearts, that you may become perfect in Jesus Christ, and may obtain the mercy which you implore. Our God is able to do this; may He lead you who desire to embrace our holy faith to the waters of regeneration; and may He grant us who have instructed you in the sacred mysteries the grace of attaining with you to the heavenly kingdom, He who with the Father and the Holy Ghost liveth and reigneth, world with out end. Amen."


Anonymous said...

"As we forgive THOSE" not them please.

Anne B said...

My late husband took me to this beautiful basilica in the year 2000! May the Lord now grant him eternal rest through the prayers of the Apostle Paul.
He also "heard" the Call late, but not too late, thank God! He was baptised 20 days before his death (which occurred on 5th July 2010) and duly received the Sacraments of Eucharist, Confirmation and Extreme Unction (and Matrimony, though we'd been married for 37 years)!

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