BEDE relates, in the life of St. Cuthbert, that the saint charged his disciples before his death, that rather than ever fall under the yoke of schismatics or infidels, they would, when threatened with such a calamity, take with them his mortal remains, and choose some other dwelling. 1 In the year 875 the province of Northumberland was so cruelly infested by Danish pirates, and Lindisfarne was so much exposed to their continual ravages, that Sardulf, the bishop, Eadred, the abbot, and the community of the monks, left that place, and carrying with them that sacred treasure, wandered to and fro for seven years. 2 In 882 they rested with it at Concester, a small town a few miles from the Roman wall, where the bishop’s see continued one hundred and thirteen years, as Camden remarks. Both King Alfred and the Danish leader granted peace for a month to all persons that fled to the saint’s shrine, and Alfred gave to his church all the land that lies between the Tyne and the Tees, as Matthew of Westminster, or whoever is the author of that compilation called the Flores of the English history, assures us. In 995, in the fresh inroads of the Danes, Bishop Aldune retired with the saint’s body to Rippon, and four months after to Durham, a place strong by its natural situation, but not habitable, till the people of the country, on this occasion, cut down the wood, and raised a small church, and cells for the monks. The body of the saint remained without being tainted with the least corruption, as Hovenden and all our other historians prove it to have been found whenever it was visited; and many miracles were wrought at his shrine, accounts of which are found in the above-mentioned historians, and others, especially in the History of the Church of Durham, written in 1100, not by Turgot, the prior, as Seldon imagined, but by Simeon, a monk of that house, as Mr. Bedford proves in his accurate edition of this work. The author relates how, a little before his time, Bishop William had, by the authority of the Conqueror, placed the monks of Weremouth and Jarrow in the cathedral at Durham. A yearly memorial of the translation of St. Cuthbert’s body to Durham was kept on this day.
INTROIT Psalm 131: 9-10
Let Thy priests, O Lord, be clothed with justice, and let Thy saints rejoice: for Thy servant David’s sake, turn not away the face of Thy anointed. V. O Lord, remember David, and all his meekness. v. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Grant, we pray thee, almighty and merciful God, that we who are keeping the feast of the Translation of thy Blessed Confessor Bishop Cuthbert may through this advocacy never lack the blessings of thy loving kindness.. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.
EPISTLE Hebrews 7: 23-27
Lesson from the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Hebrews: Brethren, there were made many priests, because by reason of death they were not suffered to continue: but Jesus, for that He continueth forever, hath an everlasting priesthood. Whereby He is able also to save forever them that come to God by Him; always living to make intercession for us. For it was fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, and undefiled, separated from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as the other priests, to offer sacrifice first for His own sins, and then for the people’s; for this Jesus Christ our Lord did once, in offering Himself.
GRADUAL Psalm 131: 16-17
I will clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall rejoice with exceeding great joy. There will I bring forth a horn to David; I have prepared a lamp for my anointed. Alleluia, alleluia! Ps. 109:4 The Lord has sworn an oath there is no retracting: Thou art a priest for ever in the line of Melchisedech. Alleluia!
GOSPEL Matthew 24: 42-47
At that time, Jesus said to His disciples: Watch, because you know not what hour your Lord will come. But this know ye, that, if the goodman of the house knew at what hour the thief would come, he would certainly watch, and would not suffer his house to be broken open. Wherefore be you also ready: because at what hour you know not the Son of man will come. Who, thinkest thou, is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath appointed over his family, to give them meat in season? Blessed is that servant, whom when his lord shall come he shall find so doing. Amen I say to you, he shall place him over all his goods.
OFFERTORY ANTIPHON Psalm 88: 25
My truth and My mercy shall be with him: and in My name shall his horn be exalted.
At the intercession of thy blessed confessor bishop Cuthbert, hallow these gifts, we pray thee, Lord, and graciously cleanse us thy servants from all stain of sin. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.
PREFACE of the Common
It is truly meet and just, and profitable unto salvation, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks to thee, O Holy Lord, Father Almighty, eternal God, through Christ, our Lord. Though whom the angels praise thy majesty, the dominions adore it, the powers are in awe. Which the heavens and the hosts of heaven together with the blessed seraphim joyfully do magnify. And do thou command that it be permitted to us join with them in confessing thee, while we say with lowly praise:
COMMUNION ANTIPHON Matthew 24: 46-47
Blessed is that servant, whom when his lord cometh he shall find watching: Amen I say to you, he shall place him over all his goods.
Lord, we pray thee let thy blessed confessor bishop Cuthbert, the feast of whose translation we are keepng, ensure, by the advocacy of his prayers, that this communion shall muse us worthy of thee. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.