Sunday, March 2, 2008

Laetare Sunday

To-day is Laetare Sunday. Be joyful, more than half of lent has passed. The incipit, the first words, of the Introit of both the Tridentine and the new mass are the same: Laetare Jerusalem, O be joyful, Jerusalem.* The option of rose vestments exist, probably more used in the old rite, to signify the day. Our french brothers used to celebrate a mini-costume treat getting with Mi-Carême, to celebrate this light day within this somber season.

To-day is also, in the old rite, the Sunday of the Five Loaves. Jesus multiplies the food for the masses, a prefigurement of the Eucharistic miracle. As Jesus once changed water to wine as he began his Eucharistic miracle, this day too, at mass brings this to mind. Mary's faith was full and perfect when she asked for the wine to be produced, the apostles', in Philip and Andrew, was not yet perfected and thought as the physical world thought; but Jesus produced the bread and fish and had twelve baskets of crumbs and crust and orts.†

The old rite's gospel read from the 6th chapter of John. The new rite's reading was the 9th chapter, where Jesus made the blind man see, by the pool of Siloe. By what circumstance, I do not know, CBS Sunday Morning programme, ran a story of a blind man whom has had sight restorative surgery. They also ran a story on the decima. Since the late 19th century, many american protestants have been coerced by their ministers to tithe. And that tithe has been, especially, important to their membership within the congregation. One fellow, James Hudnut-Beumler, made the solid connection: if God came for all men freely, and charged no men for the entry to heaven why must they tithe? The point is: how is the decima any more necessary to the christian, than Luther's complaint about the selling of indulgences? Is the voluntary coin evil and the coerced and mandatory one holy? Or was a phrase, again, lifted from Scripture to produce a rigid novelty?
*Isaias lxvi. 10 lætamini cum Hierusalem et exultate in ea omnes qui diligitis eam gaudete cum ea gaudio universi qui lugetis super eam
11 ut sugatis et repleamini ab ubere consolationis ejus ut mulgeatis et deliciis affluatis ab omnimoda gloria ejus
10 Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad with her, all you that love her: rejoice for joy with her, all you that mourn for her.
11 That you may suck, and be filled with the breasts of her consolations: that you may milk out, and flow with delights, from the abundance of her glory.
Psalmi cxxl. 1 canticum graduum huic David lætatus sum in his quæ dicta sunt mihi in domum Domini ibimus
1 I rejoiced at the things that were said to me: We shall go into the house of the Lord.
†Now, there is a protestant opinion, popularised by William Barclay, that takes the miraculous out of the Gospel by a bait and switch of definition and method.

No comments: