In the mystical and metaphysical war waged between the Woman and the Serpent, some of the most well-aimed cannon shots are fired on earth, in ceremonial actions performed with solemnity and deep conviction.
The bell announces the moment for Benediction with the Blessed Sacrament. Silently, the religious take their places in the pews of the chapel, ready to receive the graces proper to this liturgical act.
After intoning the Pange lingua, the celebrant takes the monstrance and traces out a broad sign of the Cross with it three times, as incense fills the air. After a few more prayers, the Blessed Sacrament is returned to the tabernacle. A hymn in praise of the Queen of Heaven closes the ceremony.
However, the religious do not yet leave the chapel. Cards printed with one of the seven Penitential Psalms are solemnly distributed to them. Only after receiving them do they genuflect, two by two, and withdraw from the precinct in two aligned rows, singing with vigor.
At a certain point, the music ceases. For a few moments, only the decisive steps of the advancing procession can be heard. Then one of the religious begins the recitation of David’s ancient psalm and all raise their psalm cards in unison, to implore God’s pardon in rectus tonus.
Where is this majestic procession headed? It goes from the chapel to the refectory, where, after souls have been fed, bodies will be nourished. Eating is something that every human being needs to do each day… However, the members of this group approach this earthly necessity with a supernatural attitude. They seek to impart a ceremonial note to meals, as well as to all other acts of their daily lives.
Ceremony is a consolation for penitent souls, a joy for the celestial hosts, and the delight of the Blessed. It is the canticle of the Catholic Church, the balm for her wounds, the echo of her past and the call to her future! It is the voice of the Holy Spirit, a sigh too deep for words, the canticle of the beloved. It is the cry of the God of victories and the adornment of the divine armada.
Those who lead a life marked by ceremony become the brethren of the angelic beings, for they affirm with their attitude the superiority of the spirit over matter, while proclaiming that the paths of history are marked by what happens in the sublime heavenly realms.
In fact, it can be said that there is a golden chain uniting earth to Heaven, the links of which are a life characterized by ceremonial. In every liturgical gesture carried out with deep conviction, in the cadenced steps of a procession, in every synchronized movement obeying the voice of command, in the posture of piety and recollection maintained during meals or prayers, God reinforces His covenant with man.
Aspects of the ceremonial that takes place before supper at Lumen Prophetæ House
With the splendor of her rites and ceremonies, the Church adorns herself with that glory of which many wish to strip her, and she hastens the day of the Most High’s intervention. She cries out to Him through the divine window which Heaven opens to contemplate the children of Our Lady advancing in closed ranks against the work of satan. For in the mystical and metaphysical warfare waged between the Woman and the serpent, some of the most well-aimed cannon shots are set off on earth, in acts performed with solemnity, deep conviction and ceremonial. ◊
Taken from the Heralds of the Gospel magazine, #161