Our Morning Offering – 23 May – Pentecost Sunday, Alleluia!
Veni Sancte Spiritus – The Golden Sequence
Come, Holy Spirit and bring from above The splendour of Thy light. Come, Father of the poor, come, Giver of graces, Come, Light of our hearts. Best of Consolers, sweet Guest of the soul, And Comfort of the weary. Thou rest in labour, relief in burning toil, Consoling us in sorrow. O blessed Light, fill the innermost hearts Of those who trust in Thee. Without Thy indwelling, there is nothing in man, And nothing free of sin. Cleanse what is sordid, give water in dryness, And heal the bleeding wounds. Bend what is proud, make warm what is cold, Bring back the wayward soul. Give to the faithful, who trustingly beg Thee Thy seven holy gifts. Grant virtue’s reward, salvation in death, And everlasting joy. Amen. Alleluia!
“Veni Sancte Spiritus,” the “Golden Sequence”, is a sequence prescribed in the Roman Liturgy for the Masses of Pentecost and its octave, exclusive of the following Trinity Sunday. It is usually attributed to either the thirteenth-century Pope Innocent III (c 1160 – 1216) or to the Archbishop of Canterbury, Cardinal Stephen Langton (c 1150 – 1228).
Saint of the Day – 23 May – St Guibertus of Gorze (892-962) Monk , Hermit, Founder of the Abbey of Saint-Pierre, of Gemblou at Namur , Belgium. Born in the Lorraine region of France in 892 and died on 23 May 962 at Gorze Abbey in France of natural causes. Also known as – Guibertus of Gembloux, Guibert. Wibert.
An aristocrat from Lotharingia who had participated in several military campaigns, Guibertus withdrew as a Hermit on family property in Gembloux inherited from his father.
In 936, Guibertus was assisted in the erection of a Monastery and the selection of its Monks by Erluin (died 987), who had resigned a Canonry to become a Monk. Some of Guibertus’ relatives challenged the legality of the monastic foundation, on the grounds that the Monastery was built on land of the Imperial fisc, which had been given in fee to Guibertus’ ancestors and could not be alienated without imperial authority. Emperor Otto I summoned Guibert and Erluin to his Court but was so favourably impressed with the manner in which they defended their undertaking, that on 20 September 946, he issued an imperial decree approving the foundation of Gemblacum and granting it various privileges.
After his stay at Gorze Abbey in Lorraine, he came back with the Rule of Saint Benedict for his Monastery of Gembloux and appointed his friend Erluin the first Abbot of Gembloux, while he himself became a Monk at Gorze Abbey near Metz. The Moastery was dedicated to Saint Peter and the Martyr, Saint Exuperius. He returned twice to Gembloux. The first time was in 954, when the Hungarians threatened to pillage the Monastery. Guibertus not only saved it from harm but also converted some Hungarians to Christianity. The second time was in 957, when his brother-in-law, Heribrand of Mawolt, had seized the revenues of the Monastery. Guibertus persuaded Heribrand to leave the possessions of the Monastery unmolested in the future.
The Monks were active in missionary work among the Hungarians and Slavs who stayed behind in the Duchy of Brabant after the invasion of 954.
When Guibertus died, the Monks of Gembloux came to collect the body of their Founder from the Abbey of Gorze where he had died. After having buried his body, they exhumed it and treated the body with salt and aromatics to prevent decomposition during its transport to the Abbey of Gembloux.
Virgen de Gracia / Virgin of Grace, Aés, Puente Viesgo, Pas-Miera, Cantabria, Spain (1575) – 23 May:
On 23 May, 1575, as widow María Saínz de Quijano prayed the rosary while watching sheep on Hediilla Mountain, she saw the Virgin appear :
“with such great splendour that I didn’t dare look at Her Majesty and she said I should ask the Curate of the town to build a Chapel in that spot and lace an image of the Virgin of Grace and one of St Lawrence, in the ew Chapel.“
To Maria’s objection that people wuld not believe her, the Virgin answered that she would make them believe. When the woman started to get up, she found she could not and stayed there, calling for her daughter Juana. Some neighbours passing bym found Juana, who carried her mother home on her back. María asked Juana to get the local Priest. She told him what had happened and he then told his superior, the Vicar of the valley, who dismissed it with a laugh, saying the shepherdess must have been dreaming. A few days later the Vicar passed through that place with his servant, who said, “Sir, they say the Virgin recently appeared to a woman in this spot.” The Vicar laughed again and was suddenly blinded. The servant led him home. In fear and remorse, the Vicar dictated a letter to the Archbishop, asking him to order construction of the Chapel so that he would regain his sight.
The Archbishop ordered workers to began cutting wood for construction. They cut some from high on the mountain and some from lower down, at the apparition site. But they couldn’t move the wood from the heights, although they moved that from the lower site easily.
Carmen González Echegaray, citing records in the National Archives of Spain, doesn’t say whether the Viosionary and the Vicar recovered but presumably they were among the first to receive the graces of the Virgin of Aés.
The Chapel has been rebuilt and renovated several times over the centuries, most recently in 1993. An annual procession to the mountain Shrine outside the village of Aés on 23 May, the apparition anniversary, draws participants from the entire valley. There are no acceptable images of the Chapel or the procession available.
St Basileus of Braga St Desiderius of Langres St Epitacius of Tuy St Euphebius of Naples St Euphrosyne of Polotsk St Eutychius of Valcastoria St Florentius of Valcastoria St Goban Gobhnena St Guibertus of Gorze (892-962) Monk, Hemit Bl Ivo of Chartres St Jane Antide Thouret
Bl Wincenty Matuszewski — Martyrs of Béziers: 20 Mercedarian friars murdered by Huguenots for being Catholic. Martyrs. 1562 at the Mercedarian convent at Béziers, France.
Martyrs of Cappadocia: A group of Christians tortured and martyred in the persecutions of Diocletian and Galerius. Their names and the details of their lives have not come down to us. They were crushed to death in c.303 in Cappadocia (in modern Turkey).
Martyrs of Carthage: When a civil revolt erupted in Carthage in 259 during a period of persecution by Valerian, the procurator Solon blamed it on the Christians, and began a persecution of them. We know the names and a few details about 8 of these martyrs – Donatian, Flavian, Julian, Lucius, Montanus, Primolus, Rhenus and Victorius. They were beheaded in 259 at Carthage (modern Tunis, Tunisia).
Martyrs of Mesopotamia: A group of Christians martyred in Mesopotamia in persecutions by imperial Roman authorities. Their names and the details of their lives have not come down to us. They were suffocated over a slow fire in Mesopotamia.
Martyrs of North Africa: A group of 19 Christians martyred together in the persecutions of the Arian Vandal King Hunneric for refusing to deny the Trinity. We know little more than a few of their names – Dionysius, Julian, Lucius, Paul and Quintian. c 430.