O Lord Thou shalt open my lips and my mouth shall declare Thy praise.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Lover Has Come Down to His Garden.

Holy Thursday - I Class Feria
Missa Nos Autem

Epistle: I Cor. 11:20-32 [St. Paul's account of the Last Supper and admonition not to receive unworthily.]
Gospel: Jn. 13:1-15 [Washing of the Feet.]
Full Latin-English propers here.

Christ gave us the Eucharist so that He could always be with His Bride. The Eucharist is the Intimacy between Christ and His Bride. At the Qui Pridie, we have the highest moment of the Mass. In the priest, we see the line between God and man fade away. At that moment, the priest is most joined to Christ. At that moment the priest is the Nymphios. He is the Bridegroom. The priest repeats the actions of Christ, but really, since he is a priest, he is doing them the first time. It is the only time made present again.
Qui pridie quam pateretur, accepit panem in sanctas ac venerabiles manus suas et elevavit oculis in caelum ad te Deum Patrem suum omnipotentem tibi gratias agens, benedixit, fregit, deditque discipulis suis, dicens: Accipite, et manducate ex hoc omnes. HOC EST ENIM CORPUS MEUM.

"Who, the day before He suffered, took bread in His holy and venerable hands, and with His eyes lifted up to Heaven, to You God His almighty Father gave You thanks, blessed it, broke it, gave it to His disciples, saying: Take this all of you and eat of this. THIS IS MY BODY."
Having repeated Christ's actions the priest bows forward and says the words of Consecration: HOC EST ENIM CORPUS MEUM. "THIS IS MY BODY."  All at the same instant, the priest sacrifices himself, offering his body for the sinner, that grace might come down through him. Christ likewise gives His body for sinners. He, the Nymphios, is made present, that He may be intimate with the sinner. She sees that her Divine Bridegroom wants to be intimate with her despite all her sins against Him. She is in awe of that great love He has for her, of His great mercy. All she can say is Nigra sum sed formosa. "I am black but beautiful." There is only One God, so where one Person of the Trinity is, the others, by necessity, are as well. God the Holy Ghost, who is Love Itself and joins her to her Beloved, is made present. God the Father, who created the sinner and gave her the beauty she desecrated by her life of sin is made present. All this happens at that same instant. Christ and the priest, so perfectly joined to each other, give their bodies. All of God is made present, as eternity mixes with space and time. The Divine Lover, the Nymphios, Love Itself, the Creator, who alone gives the sinner her beauty, is made present.
Simili modo postquam cenatum est accepiens et hunc praeclarum calicem in sanctas ac venerabiles manus suas: tibi gratias agens benedixit, diditque discipulis suis, dicens: Accipite, et bibite ex eo omnes. HIC EST ENIM CALIX SANGUIS MEIS, NOVI ET AETERNI TESTAMENTI, MYSTERIUM FIDEI, QUID PRO VOBIS ET PRO MULTIS EFFUNDETUR IN REMISSIONEM PECCATORUM. Haec quotiescumque feceritis, in Meam commemorationem facietis.

"In like manner, after He had supped, taking also this excellent chalice in His holy and venerable hands: also giving thanks to You, He blessed it, gave it to His disciples, saying: Take this all of you and drink of it. THIS IS THE CHALICE OF MY BLOOD, OF THE NEW AND ETERNAL TESTAMENT, THE MYSTERY OF FAITH, WHICH WILL BE POURED OUT FOR YOU AND FOR MANY FOR THE REMISSION OF SIN. Whensoever you do this, do this in commemoration of Me."
The priest and Christ together pour out their life. Every human civilization has recognized that blood is the life-force of living things. The Aztecs, to whom Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared, called blood "most precious water" in their language, as it is the force of life itself. In the chalice, we have the Life-force of He Who is Life Itself. The sinner drinks and gasps, taking life back into her body, after sin destroyed it. She bathes in this Blood, and It washes away her sins. She swims in this Blood, and is intimate with her Divine Nymphios, drowning in His infinite love for her. The Lover has come down to His garden.

We finish with the words, Haec quotiescumque feceritis, in Meam commemorationem facietis. "Whensoever you do this, do this in commemoration of Me." This is the institution of Holy Orders. The priesthood exists to allow the Nymphios to be intimate with His Bride. There is no other reason. There is no way to justify the existence of the priest, except to say that he exists to establish that intimacy between Christ and His Bride. Other than the sacraments, a priest is useless, as anyone can do all the other things he does. A priest alone offers Sacrifice. A priest alone forgives sins. A priest alone pours life in a soul. Sin takes life and the Sacraments give it. The Seven Sacraments are the only reason why the priest exists. He is the Nymphios made present by his ordination. Aside from establishing the intimacy between Christ and the Church, he is only a man; he is nothing.