Christ is the spouse of the Church: come, let us adore him.
Year: C(II). Psalm week: 4. Liturgical Colour: White.
Dedication of the Lateran Basilica (c.324)
The Lateran Basilica was built by the Emperor Constantine on the Lateran Hill in Rome in about 324. The feast of its dedication has been celebrated in Rome on this date since the twelfth century. In honour of the basilica, “the mother and head of all the churches of the City and the World,” the feast has been extended to the whole Roman Rite as a sign of unity and love towards the See of Peter, which, as St Ignatius of Antioch said in the second century, “presides over the whole assembly of charity.”
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
Second Reading: St Caesarius of Arles (c.470 - 542)
Caesarius was born around 470 at Chalon-sur-Saône, which is now in eastern France. He was a monk at the abbey of Lérins, on the French Riviera, and then bishop of the local diocese of Arles for forty years. His influence extended from southern Gaul to Spain. He convoked many Councils, and founded monasteries. His Regula virginum is the first Western monastic rule written specifically for women; the first monastery following the rule was established under his sister, Caesaria.
At a time when the Roman Empire had collapsed and no single, stable civil authority had taken its place, Caesarius protected his people from the demands of the barbarians. At the same time he sustained them with simple but lively sermons. Extracts from some of them form Second Readings in the Liturgy of the Hours to this day.
He died at Arles on 26 August 542.
Liturgical colour: white
White is the colour of heaven. Liturgically, it is used to celebrate feasts of the Lord; Christmas and Easter, the great seasons of the Lord; and the saints. Not that you will always see white in church, because if something more splendid, such as gold, is available, that can and should be used instead. We are, after all, celebrating.
In the earliest centuries all vestments were white – the white of baptismal purity and of the robes worn by the armies of the redeemed in the Apocalypse, washed white in the blood of the Lamb. As the Church grew secure enough to be able to plan her liturgy, she began to use colour so that our sense of sight could deepen our experience of the mysteries of salvation, just as incense recruits our sense of smell and music that of hearing. Over the centuries various schemes of colour for feasts and seasons were worked out, and it is only as late as the 19th century that they were harmonized into their present form.
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||1 Corinthians 3:16-17 ©|
Do you not realise that you are God’s temple and that the Spirit of God is living among you? If anybody should destroy the temple of God, God will destroy him, because the temple of God is sacred; and you are that temple.
|Noon reading (Sext)||2 Corinthians 6:16 ©|
The temple of God has no common ground with idols, and that is what we are – the temple of the living God. We have God’s word for it: I will make my home among them and live with them; I will be their God and they shall be my people.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Haggai 2:6,7,9 ©|
The Lord of Hosts says this: I will shake all the nations and the treasures of all the nations shall flow in, and I will fill this Temple with glory, says the Lord of Hosts. The new glory of this Temple is going to surpass the old, and in this place I will give peace – it is the Lord of Hosts who speaks.