Let the sight of the grandeur of Jesus transfigured prepare us for the contemplation shortly of the humiliation of His Passion. In St. John’s Gospel (I: 51), our Lord applies the vision of Jacob’s ladder to Himself, to show that in the midst of the persecutions of which He was the object, He was constantly under the protection of almighty God and His angels. So St. Hippolytus says: “As Esau planned his brother’s death so the Jews plotted against Christ and the Church. Jacob must needs fly into a far country; in the same way Christ, thrust out by the unbelief of His Own nation, had to depart into Galilee where the Church sprung from the race of Gentiles, is given to Him as His Spouse. Moreover, at the end of time, these two peoples will be reconciled as were Esau and Jacob.”
Today’s Mass, then, taken in connection with the breviary lessons for this week, acquires its full sense and helps us understand the true meaning for us of the Paschal mystery which we are about to celebrate. Jacob beheld the God of Glory; the apostles saw Jesus transfigured; soon the Church will show us the risen Savior.
INTROIT Psalm 24: 6, 3, 22
Remember, o Lord, Thy bowels of compassion, and Thy mercies that are from the beginning of the world, lest at any time our enemies rule over us : deliver us, O God of Israel, from all our tribulations. (Psalm 24: 1, 2) To Thee, O Lord, have I lifted up my soul : in Thee, O my God, I put my trust : let me not be ashamed. 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.Repeat He shall cry to Me…
O God, Who seest that we have no power whatever from ourselves; keep us both outwardly in our bodies and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body and from all evil thoughts which may hurt the soul. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever. R.Amen.
Second Collect for the Intercession of Thy Saints
Defend us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, from all dangers of mind and body; that through the intercession of the blessed and glorious ever Virgin Mary, Mother of God, together with blessed Joseph, Thy blessed apostles Peter and Paul, and blessed N. (Here mention the titular saint of the church), and all the saints, mercifully grant us safety and peace; that all adversities and errors being overcome, Thy Church may serve Thee in security and freedom.
Third Collect for the Living and the Dead
O almighty and eternal God, who hast dominion over both the living and the dead, and hast mercy on all whom Thou forekowest shall be Thine by faith and good works : we humbly beseech Thee that all for whom we have resolved to make supplication whether the present world still holds them in the flesh or the world to come has already received them out of the body, may, through the intercession of all Thy saints, obtain of Thy goodness and clemency pardon for all their sins. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.
EPISTLE 1 Thessalonians 4. 1-7
Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle to the Thessalonians. Brethren: We pray and beseech you in the Lord Jesus that, as you have received from us, how you ought to walk and to please God, so also you would walk, that you may abound the more. For you know what precepts I have given to you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, your sanctification : that you should abstain from fornication, that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor; not in the passion of lust, like the Gentiles that know not God : and that no man overreach nor circumvent his brother in business : because the Lord is the avenger of all these things, as we have told you before and have testified. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto sanctification : in Christ Jesus our Lord.
GRADUAL Psalm 24: 17, 18
The troubles of my heart are multiplied : deliver me from my necessities, O Lord. V. See my abjection and my labor, and forgive me all my sins.
TRACT Psalm 105: 1-4
Give glory to the Lord, for He is good : for His mercy endureth for ever. V. Who shall declare the powers of the Lord : who shall set forth all His praises? V. Blessed are they that keep judgment and do justice at all times. V. Remember us, O Lord, in the favor of Thy people; visit us with Thy salvation.
GOSPEL Matthew 17: 1-9
At that time Jesus taketh Peter and James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into a high mountain apart : and He was transfigured before them. And his face did shine as the sun : and His garments became white as snow. And behold there appeared to them Moses and Elias talking with Him. And Peter answering, said to Jesus: “Lord, it is good for us to be here: If Thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles, one for Thee, and one for Moss, and one for Elias.” And as he was yet speaking, behold a bright cloud overshadowed them. And lo, a voice out of the cloud, saying : “This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased: hear ye Him.” And the disciples hearing, fell upon their face and were very much afraid. And Jesus came and touched them, and said to them : “Arise, and fear not.” And they lifting up their eyes saw no one, but only Jesus. And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying: “Tell the vision to no man till the Son of Man be risen from the dead.”
OFFERTORY Psalm 118: 47, 48
I will meditate on Thy commandments, which I have loved exceedingly : and I will lift up my hands to Thy commandments, which I have loved.
Peacefully look down, we beseech Thee, O Lord, upon these sacrifices, that they may both increase our devotion and contribute to our salvation. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son. Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever. R.Amen.
Second Secret to implore the Intercession of the Saints
Graciously hear us, O God our Savior, and by the virtue of this sacrament protect us from all enemies of soul and body, bestowing on us both grace in this life and glory hereafter.
Third Secret for the Living and the Dead
O God, Who alone knowest the number of the elect to be admitted to the happiness of Heaven, grant, we beseech Thee, that through the intercession of all Thy saints, the names of all who have been recommended to our prayers and of all the faithful, may be inscribed in the book of blessed predestination. Protect us, O Lord, who assist at Thy mysteries; that, fixed upon things divine we may serve Thee in both body and mind. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.
PREFACE of Lent
It is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God: Who by this bodily fast, dost curb our vices, dost lift up our minds and bestow on us strength and rewards; through Christ our Lord. Through whom the Angels praise Thy Majesty, the Dominations worship it, the Powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the heavenly hosts together with the blessed Seraphim in triumphant chorus unite to celebrate it. Together with these we entreat Thee that Thou mayest bid our voices also to be admitted while we say with lowly praise:
HOLY, HOLY, HOLY…
COMMUNION Psalm 5: 2-4
Understand my cry : hearken to the voice of my prayer, O my King and my God : for to Thee will I pray, O Lord.
We humbly beseech Thee, O almighty God, that we whom Thou hast strengthened with Thy sacraments, may henceforth serve Thee in worthiness of life. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.
Second Postcommunion to implore the Intercession of the Saints
May the oblation of this divine sacrament cleanse and defend us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, and, through the intercession of the blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, with blessed Joseph, Thy blessed apostles Peter and Paul, blessed N. (here mention the titular saint of the church), and all the saints, purify us from all our sins and deliver us from all adversity.
Third Postcommunion for the Living and the Dead
Let us pray. May the sacraments which we have received purify us, we beseech Thee, O almighty and merciful Lord; and through the intercession of all Thy saints, grant that this Thy sacrament may not be unto us a condemnation, but a salutary intercession for pardon; may it be the washing away of sin, the strength of the weak, a protection against all dangers of the world, and a remission of all the sins of the faithful, whether living or dead. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.