Monday, September 24, 2012
Feast of Our Lady of Ransom
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Greater Double (1955 Calendar): September 24

The Order of Our Lady of Ransom was founded in the Thirteenth Century by St. Peter Nolasco (Jan. 28) and St. Raymond of Pennafort (Jan. 23), aided by King James of Aragon. The object of the Order was to redeem Christians held in slavery by the Mohammedans. Pope Gregory IX instituted the feast of Our Lady of Ransom and afterward, it was extended by Pope Innocent XII in 1696 to the Universal Church.

Traditional Readings at Matins:

At the time when the Saracen yoke oppressed the larger and more fertile part of Spain, and great numbers of the faithful were detained in cruel servitude, at the great risk of denying the Christian faith and losing their eternal salvation, the most blessed Queen of heaven graciously came to remedy all these great evils, and showed her exceeding charity in redeeming her children. She appeared with beaming countenance to Peter Nolasco, a man conspicuous for wealth and piety, who in his holy meditations was ever striving to devise some means of helping the innumerable Christians living in misery as captives of the Moors. She told him it would be very pleasing to her and her onlybegotten Son, if a religious Order were instituted in her honour, whose members should devote themselves to delivering captives from Turkish tyranny. Animated by this heavenly vision, the man of God was inflamed with burning love, having but one desire at heart, viz: that both he and the Order he was to found, might be devoted to the exercise of that highest charity, the laying down of life for one’s friends and neighbours.

That same night, the most holy Virgin appeared also to blessed Raymund of Pegnafort, and to James king of Aragon, telling them of her wish to have the Order instituted, and exhorting them to lend their aid to so great an undertaking. Meanwhile Peter hastened to relate the whole matter to Raymund, who was his confessor; and finding it had been already revealed to him from heaven, submitted humbly to his direction. King James next arrived, fully resolved to carry out the instructions he also had received from the blessed Virgin. Having therefore taken counsel together and being all of one mind, they set about instituting an Order in honour of the Virgin Mother, under the invocation of our Lady of Mercy for the ransom of captives.

On the tenth of August, in the year of our Lord one thousand two hundred and eighteen, king James put into execution what the two holy men had planned. The members of the Order bound themselves by a fourth vow to remain, when necessary, as securities in the power of the pagans, in order to deliver Christians. The king granted them licence to bear his royal arms upon their breast, and obtained from Gregory IX the confirmation of this religious institute distinguished by such eminent brotherly charity. God himself gave increase to the work, through his Virgin Mother; so that the Order spread rapidly and prosperously over the whole world. It soon reckoned many holy men remarkable for their charity and piety who collected alms from Christ’s faithful, to be spent in redeeming their brethren; and sometimes gave themselves up as ransom for many others. In order that due thanks might be rendered to God and his Virgin Mother for the benefit of such an institution the apostolic See allowed this special feast and Office to be celebrated, and also granted innumerable other privileges to the Order.

Mass Propers:

INTROIT 
Hail, holy Mother, thou who didst bring forth the King who rules heaven and earth for ever and ever. (Ps. 44: 2) My heart hath uttered a good word : I speak my works to the King. 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.

COLLECT
God, Who for the ransoming from slavery of the Christians held captive by pagans wast pleased, through the most glorious mother of Thy Son to enrich Thy Church by a new order: grant, we beseech Thee, that she, whom we piously venerate as the founder of so great a work, may, through her merits and prayers, deliver us from all our sins and from the captivity of the devil. Through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen

EPISTLE
Eccles. 24. 14-16
Lesson from the Book of Wisdom. From the beginning, and before the world, was I created, and unto the world to come I shall not cease to be, and in the holy dwelling place I have ministered before him. And so I was established in Sion, and in the holy city likewise I rested, and my power was in Jerusalem. And I took root in an honorable people, and in the portion of y God his inheritance, ad my abode is in the full assembly of saints.

GRADUAL
Thou art blessed and venerable, O Virgin Mary, who with purity unstained was found to be the Mother of our Savior. V. Virgin Mother of God, He whom the whole world was unable to contain enclosed Himself in thy womb, being made man.

Alleluia, alleluia. V. After childbirth thou didst remain a virgin: O Mother of God, intercede for us. Alleluia.



GOSPEL
Luke 11: 27-28
At that time, as Jesus was speaking to the multitudes, a certain woman from the crowd, lifting up her voice, said to Him: 'Blessed is the womb that bore Thee and the paps that gave Thee suck. But He said :'Yea, rather, blessed are they who hear the world of God and keep it.'

OFFERTORY
Luke 1: 28, 42
Hail, Mary, full of grace: the Lord is with thee, blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.

SECRET 
By Thy mercy, O Lord, and the intercession of blessed Mary, ever virgin, may this oblation profit us unto eternal and present prosperity and peace. Jesus Christ Thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever.

PREFACE (Preface of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
It is truly meet and just, right and availing unto salvation, that we should at all times and in all places give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty and everlasting God. That on the Festival of the blessed Virgin Mary, we should praise, bless and proclaim Thee. For she conceived Thine only-begotten Son by the over-shadowing of the Holy Ghost; and losing not the glory of her virginity, gave forth to the world the everlasting light, Jesus Christ our Lord. Through whom the angels praise Thy majesty, the Dominions worship it, and the powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the heavenly Hosts, and the blessed Seraphim join together in celebrating their joy. With these we pray Thee join our voices also, while we say with lowly praise:

COMMUNION
Hebrews 9: 28
Blessed is the womb of the Virgin Mary, which bore the Son of the Eternal Father.

POST COMMUNION
By Thy sanctifying gifts, O almighty Lord, grant, we beseech Thee, that, having received the aids of our salvation, we may always and everywhere be protected by the patronage of Blessed Mary ever virgin, in veneration of whom we have made this offering to Thy majesty. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever.

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