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The Liturgical Year – The Second Tuesday of Advent

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Regem venturum Dominum,
venite, adoremus.

De Isaia Propheta.
Cap. xiv.

Prope est ut veniat tempus
ejus, et dies ejus non clongabuntur.
Miserebitur enim
Dominus Jacob, et eliget adhuc
de Israel, et requiescere
eos faciet super humum suam:
adjungetur advena ad eos, et
adhaerebit domui Jacob. Et
tenebunt eos populi, et adducent
eos in locum suum:
et possidebit eos domus Israel
super terram Domini in servos
et ancillas: et erunt
capientes eos qui se ceperant,
et subjicient exactores suos.
Et erit in die illa, cum requiem
dederit tibi Deus a
labore tuo et a concussione
tua, et a servitute dura, qua
ante servisti: sumes parabolam
istam contra regem
Babylonis, et dices: Qumodo
cessavit exactor, quievit
tributum? Contrivit Dominus
baculum impiorum,
virgam dominantium,
caedentem populos in indignatione,
plaga insanabili, subjicientem
in furore Gentes,
persequentem crudeliter.
Quomodo cecidisti de coelo,
Lucifer, qui mane oriebaris?
corruisti in terram, qui vulnerabas
gentes: qui dicebas
in corde tuo: In coelum conscendam;
super astra Dei
exaltabo solium meum, sedebo
in monte testamenti, in
lateribus aquilonis: ascendam
super altitudinem nubium,
similis ero Altissimo.
Verumtamen ad infernum
detraheris in profundum
laci.

Come, let us adore the
King our Lord, who is to come.

From the Prophet Isaias.
Ch. xiv.

Her time is near at hand,
and her days shall not be
prolonged. For the Lord
will have mercy on Jacob,
and will yet choose out of
Israel, and will make them
rest upon their own ground:
and the stranger shall be
joined with them, and shall
adhere to the house of Jacob.
And the people shall take
them, and bring them into
their place: and the house of
Israel shall possess them in
the land of the Lord for
servants and handmaids:
and they shall make them
captives that had taken them,
and shall subdue their oppressors.
And it shall come
to pass in that day, that when
God shall give thee rest from
thy labour, and from thy
staff of the wicked, the rod
of the rulers, that struck the
people in wrath with an
incurable wound, that brought
nations under in fury, that
persecuted in a cruel manner.
How art thou fallen from
heaven, 0 Lucifer, who didst
rise in the morning? how
art thou fallen to the earth,
that didst wound the nations?
And thou saidst in thy heart:
I will ascend into heaven, I
will exalt my throne above
the stars of God, I will sit
in the mountain of the
covenant, in the sides of
the north: I will ascend
above the height of the
clouds, I will be like the
Most High. But yet thou
shalt be brought down to
hell, into the depth of the
pit.

Thy ruin, 0 Lucifer, is irreparable ! Thou refusedst to humble thyself before God, and thou wast cast into hell. Thy pride then sought a compensation for this thy deep humiliation, and thou causedst the ruin of the human race, out of hatred for God and His creatures. Thou didst succeed in inspiring him, who was formed out of dust, with that same pride which had caused thine own destruction. By thee sin came into this world, and by sin death: the human race seemed now a victim which never could escape thy vengeance. Forced to give up thy hopes of a heavenly royalty, thou aimedst at reigning in hell and destroying the creatures of God as they came from His creating love. But again thou art foiled and conquered. Thy reign was in pride; pride alone could form thy court and give thee subjects; now, see how the sovereign Lord of all things uproots thy kingdom: He Himself comes to teach His creatures humility; and He teaches it, not by laws given with awful majesty, as once on Sinai, but by Himself meekly practising that heavenly humility, which alone can raise up them that had fallen by pride. Tremble, proud spirit, thy sceptre is to be broken!

In thy haughty wisdom, thou disdainest this humble and lowly Virgin of Nazareth, who holds within herself, in adoring silence, the mystery of thy ruin and our salvation. The Child whom she carries in her womb, and who is so soon to be born, has long since been the object of thy contempt. Know, then, that God does not disdain this unborn Child, for this Child is also God! And a single act of adoration and devotedness to His Father, which He is making in the womb of Mary, gives more glory to the Divinity than all thy pride could rob it of, even were thy pride to increase for eternity. Henceforth, men, taught by the lessons of a God the immense power of humility, will have recourse to it as their great remedy. Instead of exalting themselves, as thou didst, by a mad and guilty pride, they will humble themselves with love and pleasure: the lower they humble themselves, the higher will God raise them: the poorer they own themselves, the richer will He make them. It is the glorious Virgin that tells us this in her exquisite canticle. May she be ever blessed, Mother so gentle and sweet to her children, and so terrible to thee, Lucifer! that writhest beneath her as she crushes and conquers thee.

PROSE FOR THE TIME OF ADVENT

(Composed in the eleventh century, and taken from the ancient Roman-French missals)

Regnantem sempiterna per
saecla susceptura
Concio, devote concrepa:
Factori redde debita.Quem jubilant agmina caelica,
ejus vultu exhilarata.

Quem exspectant omnia
terrea, ejus vultu examinanda,

Districtum ad judicia,
Clementem in potentia.
Tua nos salva, Christe,
clementia propter quos passus
es dira.
Ad poli astra subleva nitida:
qui sorde tergis saecula.

Influens salus vera, effuga
pericula.

Omnia ut sint munda, tribue
pacifica.
Ut hic tua salvi misericordia:
laeti regna post adeamus
supera.

Qui regnas saecula per
infinita. Amen.

Ready to receive him who
reigneth for ever and ever,
Devoutly sing, 0 Christian
people; pay thy homage to
thy Creator.
The heavenly hosts, who
enjoy the beauty of his
countenance, are every praising him
in jubilation.
All earthly things, which
are to be examined before his
face, are in expectation his of
him.
Him so severe in judgement,
So merciful in power.
Save us in thy mercy, 0
Christ, for whom thou didst
suffer so cruel a passion.
Raise us up to the bright
stars of heaven, 0 thou that
dost take away the sins of the
earth.
True upon Saviour, descending
as dew upon us, drive all
dangers from us.
Purify all that is about us,
make all in peace;
That here protected by thy
mercy, we may ascend, hereafter,
into the kingdom of
heaven in gladness.
Who livest and reignest for
endless ages. Amen.

FROM THE GALLICAN SACRAMENTARY

(Mass for Christmas Eve)

Misericors ac piissime Deus,
cujus voluntate ac munere
Dominus noster Jesus
Christus ad hoc se humiliavit,
ut totum genus exaltaret
humanum, et ideo ad ima
descenderet, ut humilia sublimaret:
ac propterea Deus
homo nascitur per Virginem,
ut in homine perditam coelestem
reformaret imaginem:
da ut plebs haec tibi adhaereat,
ut quam redemisti tuo munere,
tibi semper devota placeat servitute.
0 merciful and most loving
God, by whose will and
bounty our Lord Jesus Christ
humbled himself that he
might exalt the whole human
race, and came down to what
was lowest that he might
raise up the humble : who,
being God, did become man,
born of a Virgin, to the end
that he might re-form in man
the heavenly image that had
been corrupted ; grant that
this thy people may cling to
thee, and that they, whom
thou hast redeemed by thy
bounty, may ever please thee
by devoted service.

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