Carissimi: Today’s Mass; St Juliana Falconieri, Virgin

St Juliana Falconieri, Virgin; Commemoration of SS Gervase & Protase, Martyrs: Missa “Dilexísti justítiam” Juliana was a spirited young woman of Florence who felt drawn to serve God in a radical way. Through her uncle she was attracted to the Servites, first as a tertiary and later became the Superior of the “Mantellate” Servite Sisters. Juliana…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; SS. Mark & Marcellian, Martyrs

SS. Mark & Marcellian, Martyrs: Missa “Salus autem“ Mark and Marcellian (d. c.290), Roman martyrs. These martyrs are commemorated in the ancient Roman sacramentaries; their tomb, with frescoes of them and their companions, has been identified in the catacomb of St. Balbina. For the details of their Lives the only source is the unreliable 5th‐century Acts…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; St Aldhelm, Bishop Confessor

St Aldhelm, Bishop & Confessor; Comm. S. Urban Pope & Martyr: Missa “Statuit ei Dominus” Aldhelm was born in Wessex, in AD 639. He was apparently a ‘nephew’ of King Ine, probably, in fact, a cousin of some kind. His father’s name was Centa, and it has been suggested that this was a pet name for Ine’s…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; Our Lady Help of Christians

Our Lady Help of Christians: Missa “Salve, sancta parens“ There are two inscriptions of the first centuries of Christianity in Greek related to the Virgin Mary: : θεοτοκος (Teotokos, Theotokos, Mother of God) and βοηθεια (Boetheia, the Helper). The Fathers of the Church referred to Mary as “βοηθεια”. John Chrysostom used the title in a…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; S. Gregory VII of Rome, Confessor

St Gregory VII of Rome, Confessor: Missa “Sacerdotes tui“ The 10th century and the first half of the 11th were dark days for the Church, partly because the papacy was the pawn of various Roman families. In 1049, things began to change when Pope Leo IX, a reformer, was elected. He brought a young monk…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; S. Dunstan of Canterbury, Bishop & Confessor

St Dunstan, Bishop & Confessor; Comm. Sunday IV Post Pascha, St Peter Celestine, Bishop of Rome & St Pudentiana, Virgin: Missa “Sacerdotes tui“ Born of a noble family at Baltonsborough, near Glastonbury, England, Dunstan was educated there by Irish monks and while still a youth, was sent to the court of King Athelstan. He became…

Carissimi; Today’s Mass: St Stanislaus, Bishop & Martyr

St Stanislaus, Bishop & Martyr: Missa “Protexisti” Saint Stanislaus, a Polish martyr, was Bishop of Cracow. King Boleslaw II was outraging the whole kingdom by his acts of lust and cruelty. St. Stanislaus, finding all remonstrances useless, excommunicated him. By order of the king he was cut in pieces at the foot of the altar while…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; Pope S. Pius V, Confessor

Pope St Pius V, Confessor; commemoration of Good Shepherd Sunday, II Post Pascha: Missa “Sacerdotes tui“ Pope from 1566-1572 and one of the foremost leaders of the Catholic Reformation. Born Antonio Ghislieri in Bosco, Italy, to a poor family, he labored as a shepherd until the age of fourteen and then joined the Dominicans, being…

Carissimi; Today’s Mass: SS Philip & James, Apostles

SS Philip and James, Apostles: Missa “Clamaverunt ad te” According to the legend, St Philip preached in different parts of Asia and Southern Russia and was crucified in Hierapolis. St James, the author of the Epistle, was a relative (‘brother’) of Our Lord and Bishop of Jerusalem. He was thrown down from the Temple in 62…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; St Richard of Chichester

St Richard of Chichester, Bishop Confessor; Comm. of the Lenten Feria: Missa “Statuit ei Dominus“ Bishop and leading figure in England during his era, also called Richard de Wyche. Born at Wyche, Worcestershire, England, he was orphaned while a young lad, managed to regain his fortune which had been mismanaged by others, and received an excellent…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; Feast of St Benedict

Feast of Saint Benedict, Abbot and Religious Founder; Commemoration of the Lenten Feria: Missa “Os justi” Known as the “Father of Western Monastic Life,” Saint Benedict is the founder of the Benedictines. Born in 480 into a noble family in the village of Nursia, Italy, he studied in Rome but, fearing he would succumb to the…

Carissimi: Today’s Mass; St Joseph, Husband of the BVM

St Joseph, Husband of the BVM; Comm. Tuesday Lent II: Missa “Justus ut palma florebit” The Church always honors St. Joseph with Mary and Jesus, especially during the Christmas solemnities. This day’s Gospel is indeed that of December 24th. A Coptic calendar tells us that St. Joseph was liturgically honored in a special way on July…