Let us adore the Saviour, who gave his Mother a share in his passion.
Year: B(II). Psalm week: 3. Liturgical Colour: White.
The devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows flourished in the Middle Ages, and the hymn Stabat Mater was composed for it. Although it is officially celebrated today, the day after the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, popular devotion in many parts of the Mediterranean celebrates it with processions on the Friday before Holy Week.
|Other saints: Saint Mirin (565-620)|
Saint Mirin or Mirren is also known as Mirren of Benchor (now called Bangor), Merinus, Merryn and Meadhrán.
A contemporary of the better known Saint Columba of Iona and disciple of Saint Comgall, he was prior of Bangor Abbey in County Down, Ireland. He later took oversight of the monastery and thus became the prior of Bangor Abbey. He left Ireland on a missionary journey to the west of Scotland, where he founded a monastery around which there grew up the present city of Paisley.
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
|Second Reading: St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090 - 1153)|
Bernard was born near Dijon, in France, in 1090, of a noble family. In 1112 he joined the new monastery at Cîteaux. This had been founded fourteen years before, in a bid to reject the laxity and riches of much of the Benedictine Order of the time (as exemplified by the great monasteries such as Cluny) and to return to a primitive poverty and austerity of life.
Bernard arrived at Cîteaux with four of his five brothers and two dozen friends. Within three years he had been sent out to found a new monastery at Clairvaux, in Champagne, where he remained abbot for the rest of his life. By the time of his death, the Cistercian Order (“the Order of Cîteaux”) had grown from one house to 343, of which 68 were daughter houses of Clairvaux itself.
Bernard was a man of great holiness and wisdom, and although he was often in very poor health, he was active in many of the great public debates of the time. He strongly opposed the luxurious lives of some of the clergy, and fought against the persecution of the Jews. He was also a prolific writer, and the Liturgy of the Hours uses extracts from many of his sermons.
White is the colour of heaven. Liturgically, it is used to celebrate feasts of the Lord; Christmas and Easter, the great seasons of the Lord; and the saints. Not that you will always see white in church, because if something more splendid, such as gold, is available, that can and should be used instead. We are, after all, celebrating.
In the earliest centuries all vestments were white – the white of baptismal purity and of the robes worn by the armies of the redeemed in the Apocalypse, washed white in the blood of the Lamb. As the Church grew secure enough to be able to plan her liturgy, she began to use colour so that our sense of sight could deepen our experience of the mysteries of salvation, just as incense recruits our sense of smell and music that of hearing. Over the centuries various schemes of colour for feasts and seasons were worked out, and it is only as late as the 19th century that they were harmonized into their present form.
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||1 Samuel 15:22 ©|
Is the pleasure of the Lord in holocausts and sacrifices or in obedience to the voice of the Lord? Obedience is better than sacrifice, submissiveness better than the fat of rams.
|Noon reading (Sext)||Galatians 5:26,6:2 ©|
We must stop being conceited, provocative and envious. You should carry each other’s troubles and fulfil the law of Christ.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Micah 6:8 ©|
What is good has been explained to you, man; this is what the Lord asks of you: only this, to act justly, to love tenderly and to walk humbly with your God.