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r. Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you? • Therefore glorify God in your body. -. I will set my tabernacle among you, I will walk among you and be your 'God. Therefore glorify God, &c.—1 Cor. vi.; Lev. xxvi.
“ Vos O virginei cum citharis chori.”
Lest worldly image, brought
Should sully the heav'n-opening soul
Your eye and ear in heav'n.
And thus the flesh subdued
God might be all in all.
Such is the virgin soul
Bound to thee, Lord, in holiest state,
Living alone to thee. v. Hearken, o daughter, and consider ; incline thine ear.-7. Forget also thine own people, and thy father's house. - Ps. xlv.
Ant. at the magnificat. The Lord delighteth in thee ; and thy God shall rejoice over thee.-Ls, lxü.
AT THE NOCTURNAL OFYICE. Invitatory. The Lamb whom the virgins follow. * O come let us sing Rev. xiv.; Ps. xcv.
“ Cælestis aula panditur." Open is the starry hall;
In his presence is the store, Hear ye ? 'tis the bridegroom's call !
Purest joys for evermore,
And the fountain flowing o'er ;
No more night,
Safe upon the happy shore
Of the light!
What was royalty's short flowcr ? Tears for ever pass d away ;,
Or the triumph of an hour?
What fleet pleasure's fading bower
's own presence is the dower
Of the soul !
When the heart
Ne'er to part!
In the Second Nocturn there occur the following Lectios :
From St. Cyprian, the Bishop and Martyr.
LECTIO THE FOURTH.
Our discourse must now be addressed to virgins, who, as their glory is the more excellent, so do they require of us a greater care. For of the offspring of the church, they are the
flower; here is the glory and ornament of spiritual graces, the glad temper of mind, the work incorrupt and pure, worthy of all praise and honour, the image of God answering to that sanctifying influence which it hath received of him; the more excellent portion of Christ's flock. It is in these that our mother, the church, delights amidst the glorious increase of her children. The more there are added to the number of her virgins, the more doth the joy of our holy mother abound.
r. I will betroth thee unto me for ever : yea, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousnese, and in judgment, and in loving-kindness, and in mercies.-v. Follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness : yea, I will betroth thee unto me, &c. Hos. ü.; 1 Tim. vi.
LECTIO THE FIFTH.
To these we speak; these we exhort with affection rather than with authority; not that we who are the last and the least, and well aware of our own littleness, should introduce any censorious reflection on the liberty of others; but that we should be more cautious, more on our guard, more apprehensive of the hostility of the devil. Nor is such caution unnecessary, or such an apprehension a vain one, which would consult for the way of salvation, and keep watch over the life-giving precepts of the Lord. That they who have consecrated themselves to Christ, and retiring from all carnal concupiscence, have devoted themselves to God, in flesh and in spirit also, should go on to consummate that work which is destined for so great reward: that they should have no further desire to be adorned, or to please any one but their Lord alone, from whom they expect the reward of their chaste conversation, who hath himself said, “ All cannot receive this saying, but they to whom it is given."
r. I will make them to know that I have loved thee : * hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown. -v. I put a beautiful crown upon thine head, and thou didst prosper unto a kingdom, for thou wast perfect through my comeliness, which I had put upon thee. * Hold that fast, &c.—Rev. iii. ; Ezek. xvi.
LECTIO THE SIXTH.
Finally, by that voice of the angel the reward of chastity is set forth, the virgin state is preached, these are they which were not defiled with women, for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth." Nor is it to the man alone that God promises this grace of continence, and passes by the woman. But as the woman is a part of the man, and is taken and formed froin him, in almost all the Scriptures God speaks to the first creation, because they are two in one flesh, and in the man the woman is signified. Wherefore, if this chastity is the follower of Christ, and if this virgin state is ordained and intended for the kingdom of God, what have they to do with worldly apparel and ornaments, by which, while they are seeking to please men, they displease God?
1. Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: * for love is strong as death.-v. Nor things present, nor things to come, nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the love of God. • For love is strong us death. --Song of Sol. viii.; Ron viü.
IN THE THIRD NOCTURN.
Lectio from the sacred Gospel according to St. Matthew. Cap. 25.
LECTIO THE SEVENTH.
Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps and went forth to meet the bridegroom. Et reliqua.
Honily of Pope Gregory. They all have lamps, but all have not oil in them; for, generally speaking, the reprobate have shewn forth good works as well as the elect; but the latter alone come to the bridegroom with oil in their lamps, because for those actions which they had to do abroad, they sought for the praise within. Wherefore it is spoken by the Psalmist concerning the sacred church of the elect," the king's daughter is all glorious within." But while the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept; for while the Judge delayeth his coming to the last judgment, the eleet and the reprobate are laid in the sleep of death.
r. O how beautiful is the chaste and honourable seed : * the memorial thereof is immortal, because it is known with God and with men, -v. Pure religion before God and the Father is this, to keep himself unspotted from the world. * The memorial thereof is immortal, &c. -Wis. iv.; James i.
LECTIO THE EIGHTH.
At midnight the cry was heard of the bridegroom coming ; for thus it is that the day of
judgment stealeth on us unawares, that it cannot be foreseen when it cometh. From whence it is written, the day of the Lord shall so come as a thief in the night. Then all the virgins arise, for both the elect and the reprobate are awakened from the sleep of death. They trim their lainps, for they now by themselves calculate their own works, according to which they look for eternal blessedness. But the lamps of the foolish virgins are extinguished, for their works, which appeared fair to men without, are obscured by the brightness of the Judge's coming; and from God they find no recompence, because they have received from men the praises which they loved.
r. Blessed is the barren ; * and the undefiled shall have fruit in the visitation of souls.v. God will render to them, who by patient continuance in well doing each for immortality, eternal life. * And the undefiled shall have fruit. -- Wis. ii.; Rom. ii.
LECTIO THE NINTH. And what is their seeking oil from the wise, but that on the Judge's coming, when they have found themselves void within, they are seeking for testimony from without. But the wise virgins answer, and say, “ Lest there be not enough for us and you, go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom caine; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage, and the door was shut.” Oh, that thou wouldst but apprehend these words! What amazement is conveyed in these, “ the bridegroom cometh!" What sweetness in these, “ they entered with him into the marriage !" What bitterness in these, “ the door was shut !” Then will the door of the kingdom be closed against them mourning, which is now every day open to the penitent. Then also will there be repentance, but a repentance which will then be unprofitable, for then he by no means findeth pardon, who now loseth the time fitted for repentance.
r. Unto him shall be given an inheritance in the temple of the Lord more acceptable to his mind: * for glorious is the fruit of good labours, and the root of wisdom shall never fall away. - -v. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. * For glorious, &c.Wis, üi.; Matt. v.
At the Lauds the following Hymn occurs :
Capitulum. Wis. viii. ! perceived that I could not otherwise obtain her, except God gave her me ; and that was a point of wisdom also to know whose gift she was.
Pavere mundi gaudia.'
With more than wedded charities Hath fed with vanities,
Then thou to them dost tura, Nor earthly image dimm’d the breast, And in their bosom all unfelt Reflecting the pure skies.
With thoughts divine dost burn. A higher thought, a nobler aim,
They, touch'd by that transforming power, The virgin-soul employs;
Put on mysterious change;
In union new and strange.
That no contagious dart
The senses, reach the heart! v. My soul thirsteth for thee
.. My flesh also longeth after thee.-Ps. lxij. Ant. at the Benedictus. My soul shall be joyful in my God, for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, as the bride adorned with her jewels. — Is. lxi. At the Second Vespers there is the following :
Capitulum. Rev. xix. The Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour unto him, for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready,
Amoris expers improbi.”
Soft Pleasure's soul-pervading influence
( The Dorologies to the Hymns omitted.) 0. Maidens, praise the name of the Lord. .-7. For his name only is excellent.Ps. cxlviii.
Ant. at the Magnificat. In the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage ; but are as the angels of God in heaven.—Matt. xxii.
The Scripture Lectios, in the First Nocturn, are from the 7th chapter of the 1st Epistle to the Corinthians. The Antiphones, which are omitted, are mostly from the Song of Solo mon, or the 25th chapter of St. Matthew. The Lectios on the Octave, and on the intervening Sunday, are from Gregory Nyssen, from Hilary, Augustin, and Chrysostom.
Our wandering thoughts, and, in return, they cheat
And mock us with some poor, yet proud, conceit;
Each tendering amplest homage at our feet,
Till loathing of each humbler task we meet
TO THE EVENING STAR.
SOLE star, that glitterest in the crimson west,
“Fair Child of Beauty, glorious lamp of love,
For all surpassing glory needs must be
Full unto us of sad perplexity,
Fulfil with music sweet your Maker's ears.
Is hotly up, that not the swart sun's blaze,
Down beating with unmitigated rays,
Of its green beauty, shall not quite prevail
That all its morning freshness should exhale,
R. C. T.
THE CHRISTIAN YEAR.
Calming with gentler wisdom this world's strife,