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vine sceptre of the King; thou art the strength of them that wage war; it is our confidence in thee that makes us put our enemies to flight. Oh! ever grant to us who honour thee, victory over the Barbarians.

Crux es, exercitus fortitudo; in tua fiducia profligamus hostes; nobis qui te adoramus, semper concede adversus Barbaros victorias.



TO-DAY, we begin, as does the holy Gospel, to number the days which precede the Death, the Sacrifice, of the Lamb of God. St. John, in the 12th Chapter of his Gospel, tells us that this is the Sixth day before the Pasch.

Jesus is in Bethania, where a feast is being given in his honour. Lazarus, he whom Jesus has restored to life, was present at this repast, which was given in the house of Simon the Leper. Martha is busy looking after the various arrangements; her sister, Mary Magdalene, has a heavenly presentiment that the death and burial of her beloved Master are soon to be, and she has poured upon him a precious perfume. The Holy Gospel, which ever observes such a mysterious reserve with regard to the Mother of Jesus, does not tell us that Mary was at Bethania on this occasion, but there can be no doubt of her being present. The Apostles were also there, and partook of the repast. Whilst the friends of our Saviour were thus grouped around him, in this village, which was about two thousand paces from Jerusalem, the aspect of the faithless City becomes more and more threatening and yet, though his Disciples are not aware of it, Jesus is to enter the City to-morrow, and in a most public manner. The heart of Mary is a


prey to sadness; Magdalene is absorbed in grief; everything announces that the fatal day is near.

The Church has reserved for Monday next the Gospel which relates the history of this Saturday. The reason is, that formerly, and up to the 12th century, there was no Station held on this day in Rome: it was left free, in order that the Pope might rest before the great fatigues of Holy Week, whose long and solemn services were to begin on the morrow. But, although he did not preside over the assembly of the Faithful, he, on this day, had to observe two usages, which had been handed down by tradition, and which had almost become of liturgical importance in the Church at Rome.

During the whole year, the Pope used, every Sunday, to send a portion of the sacred species, consecrated by him, to each of the priests of the presbyterial Titles, or parochial Churches, of the City. But it was to-day that this distribution was made for the whole of Holy Week, perhaps on account of to-morrow's long service. We know from the ancient liturgical books of Rome, that it was in the Lateran Consistory that to-day's sacred distribution was made, and it is probable (as the Blessed Cardinal Tommasi and Benedict the Fourteenth tell us,) that the Bishops of the suburbicarian Churches were of the number of those who received it. We have several instances proving that, formerly, Bishops occasionally sent to one another the Blessed Sacrament, as a sign of the union that existed between them. With regard to the priests of the city Parochial Churches, to whom a Particle was sent by the Pope, they put a portion of it in the Chalice before receiving the Precious Blood.

The other custom, peculiar to this day, consisted in giving alms to all the poor. The Pope presided at this distribution, which was no doubt made ample enough to last the whole of the coming Week, when,

on account of the long Ceremonies, it would scarcely be possible to attend to individual cases of poverty. The Liturgists of the Middle-Ages allude to the beautiful appropriateness of the Roman Pontiff's distributing alms with his own hand, to the poor, on this day, the same on which Mary Magdalene embalmed, with her perfumes, the feet of Jesus.

Since the 12th century, a Station has been assigned to this Saturday; it takes place in the Church of Saint John before the Latin Gate. This ancient basilica is built near the spot where the Beloved Disciple was, by Domitian's order, plunged into the cauldron of boiling oil.

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and let us give no heed to all his words. Give heed to me, O Lord, and hear the voice of my adversaries. Shall evil be rendered for good, because they have digged a pit for my soul? Remember that I have stood in thy sight, to speak good for them, and to turn away thy indignation from them. Therefore deliver up their children to famine, and bring them into the hands of the sword; let their wives be bereaved of children, and widows; and let the husbands be slain by death; let their young men be stabbed with the sword in battle. Let a cry be heard out of their houses; for thou shalt bring the robber upon them suddenly, because they have digged a pit to take me, and have hid snares for my feet. But thou, O Lord, knowest all their counsel against me unto death; forgive not their iniquity, and let not their sin be blotted out from thy sight; let them be overthrown before thy eyes, in the time of thy wrath do thou destroy them, O Lord our God.

attendamus ad universos sermones ejus. Attende, Domine, ad me; et audí vocem adversariorum meorum. Numquid redditur pro bono malum, quia foderunt foveam animæ meæ Recordare quod steterim in conspectu tuo, ut loquerer pro eis bonum, et averterem indignationem tuam ab eis. Propterea da filios eorum in famem, et deduc eos in manus gladii; fiant uxores eorum absque liberis, et viduæ et viri earum interficiantur morte: juvenes eorum confodiantur gladio in prælio. Audiatur clamor de domibus eorum: adduces enim super eos latronem repente : quia foderunt foveam ut caperent me, et laqueos absconderunt pedibus meis. Tu autem, Domine, scis omne consilium eorum adversum me in mortem: ne propitieris iniquitati eorum, et peccatum eorum a facie tua non deleatur: fiant corruentes in conspectu tuo, in tempore furoris tui abutere eis, Domine Deus noster.

It makes us tremble to read these awful anathemas, which Jeremias, the figure of Christ, speaks against his enemies, the Jews. This prophecy, which was literally fulfilled at the first destruction of Jerusalem by the Assyrians, received a more terrible fulfilment at the second visitation of God's anger upon this city of malediction. This time, it was not because the Jews had persecuted a Prophet; it was because they had rejected and crucified the very Son

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