Wednesday, October 07, 2009

On the feast day of Lepanto: a new project!

Yes, I have been busy, and have not had as much time to write here as I might wish. But since today is the feast of the Holy Rosary - the day where we thank God for His aid in the naval battle in 1571 where the Holy League was victorious over the Turks, as recalled in Chesterton's great poem - well, I thought I ought to let you know of a possible new project I am considering.

Some time ago I obtained a copy of Baruffaldo's Commentary on the Roman Ritual, dating to 1730. Other matters I am facing demanded a consultation of this text, in particular the precise ritual for the blessing of "Lustral Water" which we also call "Holy Water". This ritual, in the traditional form, requires salt as well as water, and consists of two exorcisms and three prayers with the blessing - all very interesting, and worth the consideration of technologists and historians as well as those who have theological or spiritual interests in the topic.

I am hardly an expert in Latin, and as far as I know this text has not yet been translated, but I do have dictionaries and grammars, and so I was able to get at least a small hint of the sense both of the prayers and of the commentary. I am all too aware of the time limits I am facing (and you as well) but I think a study of this particular blessing is very timely and worthwhile, and will pay us back.

So I shall at least make a start, and begin with the first paragraph, asking for anyone who really knows Latin to note the flaws and make suggestions. We do not wish take over for the experts, but simply make more people acquainted with the treasures of the Church.

Ordo ad Faciendam Aquam Benedictam,
Titulus Quadragesimus quintus.

Generalibus ita expositis de Benedictionibus, succedunt Benedictiones in specie, quarum prima est illa Aquae lustralis, seu Benedictae, hac potissimum ratione, quia illa una cum signo Crucis utendum esse in omnibus ferè Benedictionibus, praeferibit Ecclesia, etiamsi res benedicenda fuerit priùs Oleo Sacro inuncta, ut videre est in confectatione Calicis, & Patenae. Si itaque fieri volunt caeterae Benedictiones à Sacredote, necesse est, ut paratum priùs habeat hanc Aquam benedictam, cum qua benedictiones suas expediat, ut patet ex ipso Rituali, in quo post Orationes, & Preces adhibitas in benedictionibus, semper subjungitur: Deinde aspergat Aqua benedicta, &c.
In hac benedictione omnem diligentiam, & attentionem adhibere debet Sacerdos, ut ritè, et rectè fiat: quandoque enim Daemones Aquam lustralem nequaquam tiuisse dicuntur, quia non fuerat ritè benedicta, Leo Prax. Archiep. p. 1 c. 6, num. 29 in fine. Verba itaque attentè pronuncianda sunt pro forma hujus Benedictionis: in hoc enim differt materia à forma; quòd si in forma aliquid deest, ampliùs forma non est: materia verò semper eadem manet, ex Philosopho, qui ait: Remota aliqua parte materiae remanet materia, set remota parte formae, recedit forma, Sarnell, Ep. Eccl. T. 4, ep. 18. Praeter diligentiam in adimplendis praescriptis à Rituali in hac Benedictione, debet Sacerdos cavere, ne sit aliqua censura innodatus, quia si cum tali vinculo Benedictionem facere praesumeret, fieret irregularis, Corsett, de Bened. in adden. numer. 3, qui citat Sylvest., & Polacc. P. 2. t. 7. num. 1 in add.

[Baruffaldo, Ad Rituale Romanum Commentaria 259-60]
And now, my rough translation:
Order of making Blessed Water,
Forty-fifth Title.

Thus having given an exposition of Blessings in general, specific Blessings follow, of which the first is that Lustral Water, or Blessed, for this most powerful reason, because that one with the sign of the Cross is used in almost all Blessings, preferred by the Church, even if the thing to be bless will be first anointed with Holy Oil, as to be seen in the making of a Chalice & Paten. If therefore other blessings are desired to be performed by the Priest, it is necessary, that beforehand he has prepared this blessed Water, with which his blessings may be accomplished, that open from the same Ritual, in which after Orations, & Prayers, applied in the blessings, always subjoined: Then he sprinkles it with holy water, &c.

In this blessing the Priest ought to apply all diligence and attention, that it may be done properly and rightly: for whenever the demons are said by no means to fear lustral Water, because it was not rightly blessed, Leo [ref] And thus the words are pronounced attentively for the form of this Blessing: for in this matter differs from form; that if something is lacking in form, even more the form is not: for the matter truly remains the same, as the Philosopher says: Some remote part of matter remains matter, but form departs when part of form is remote, Sarnell, [ref] Besides diligence in performing the prescriptions of the Ritual in this Blessing, the Priest ought to beware, not to do something bound by censure, because if with such chains the Blessing is presumed to be done, it will be done irregularly, Corsett [ref]

You can most likely tell that I found that second paragraph difficult, but I wanted to get it in, because of the line about the Demons fearing Holy Water. I think this point is well worth our consideration, and we shall hear more about this powerful weapon as we proceed into the text.


At 07 October, 2009 17:59, Blogger Sheila said...

Very nice! I don't notice any mistakes on first reading. If you want to make the sentence about the demons flow better, you could change "because" to, "it is because" or something like that, to make it a complete sentence.


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