Our Morning Offering – 7 May – “The Month of the Blessed Virgin Mary”
Regina Caeli Laetari
Eastertide from Holy Saturday
until Trinity Sunday
(in case you forgot to replace the praying
of the Angelus).
Anthem to the Blessed Virgin
Regina Caeli Laetari
Queen of heaven
O Queen of Heaven, rejoice, Alleluia.
For He Whom thou didst merit to bear, Alleluia.
Hath risen as He said, Alleluia.
Pray for us to God, Alleluia.
V. Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary! Alleluia.
R. For the Lord is truly risen, Alleluia.
Let us pray
O God, Who by the Resurrection of Thy Son,
Our Lord Jesus Christ,
hast vouchsafed to make glad
the whole world, grant, we beseech Thee,
that, through the intercession
HIs Holy Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary,
we may attain the joys of eternal life.
Through the same Christ our Lord.
There is a venerable tradition connected with this joyous Anthem. It is related that a fearful pestilence raged in Rome, during one of the Easters of the Pontificate of St. Gregory the Great. In order to propitiate the anger of God, the holy Pope prescribed a public procession of both people and clergy, in which was to be carried the portrait of our Blessed Lady painted by St Luke.
The procession was advancing in the direction of Saint Peter’s and as the holy Picture, followed by the Pontiff, (it is said that he processed with bare feet), was carried along, the atmosphere became pure and free from pestilence. Having reached the bridge which joins the City with the Vatican, a choir of Angels was heard singing above the Picture and saying: “Rejoice, O Queen of heaven, alleluia! for He whom thou deservedst to bear, alleluia! hath risen, as He said, alleluia!” As soon as the heavenly music ceased, the saintly Pontiff took courage, and added these words to those of the Angels: “Pray to God for us, alleluia!”
Thus was composed the Paschal Anthem to our Lady. Raising his eyes to heaven, Gregory saw the destroying Angel standing on the top of the Mole of Hadrian and sheathing his sword.
In memory of this apparition, the Mole was called the Castle of Saint Angela and on the dome was placed an immense statue representing an Angel holding his sword in the scabbard.
( “The Sovereign Pontiff Benedict XIII, by a brief, Injuntae nobis, 14 September1724, amended by the Sacred Penitentiary Apostolic, 20 February 1933, granted a Plenary Indulgence, once a month, to all the faithful who, everyday, in the morning (6.00), at noon and in the evening at sunset (6.00), shall say, devoutly, the Angelus Dominie, with the Hail Mary, three times, or at Eastertide the Regina Caeli, on any day when, being truly penitent, after Confession and Communion, they shall pray for peace and union among Christian Princes, for the extirpation of heresy and for the triumph of Holy Mother Church. Also an indulgence of ten years, on all the other days in the year, ever time that they shall devoutly say these prayers.”)
Regina caeli, laetare, Alleluia.
Qua quem meruisti portare, Alleluia.
Resurrexit, sicut dixit, Alleluia.
Ora pro nobis Deum, Alleluia.
V. Gaude et laetare, Virgo Maria, Alleluia.
R. Qua surrexit Dominus vere, Alleluia.
Deus, qui per resurrectionem Filii tui,
Domini nostri, Jesu Christi,
mundum laetificare dignatus es, praesta,
quaesumus, ut per ejus
Genitricem Virginem Mariam
perpetuae capiamus gaudia vitae:
per eumdem Christum, Dominum nostrum.