Saturday, August 22, 2015


"'The ambition of th[is] clever man was therefore fulfilled in this one [respect], at least, that he to whom it had been denied to make a contribution to the bibliography of the Reformers had now [seriously] complicated also the work of others in his favorite sphere.  For whenever a Luther autographnot already described [as such] before Kyrieleis' timeis noticed in a book, its lucky discoverer must now cry out in anxious [self-]doubt, "Kyrieleis?"'"

"'Dem Ehrgeiz des geschickten Mannes ist also wenigstens das eine gelungen, daß er, dem es versagt war, sich mit seinen Beiträgen zur Reformatorenbibliographie durchzusetzen, nun auch die Arbeiten der anderen auf seinem Lieblingsgebiete gestört hat.  Denn überall, wo ein Lutherautogramm in einem Buche erscheint, das nicht schon vor Herrn Kyrieleis Tagen beschrieben wurde, muß dessen glücklicher Entdecker jetzt mit bangen Zweifeln ausrufen:  Kyrieleis?'"

     G. A. E. Bogeng, “Bibliophiliana XLIV,” Zeitschrift für Bücherfreunde n.F. 8, no. 1 (1916):  Sp. 297, as quoted in Manfred Koschlig, "Widmungsexemplare Martin Luthers - Kyrieleis fecit (1893-96)," Philobiblon:  eine Vierteljahresschrift für Bach- und Graphiksammler 14, no. 4 (1970):  221-222 (217-258).

Friday, August 21, 2015

"Many men are said to be merciful, | but how often do we find one who is faithful to his duty? | The great quality of a steward is to be faithful to his duty."

Multi homines misericordes vocantur, virum autem fidelem quis inveniet?

     Responsory to the first reading for a priest, Office of readings, Common of pastors, Liturgy of the hours, vol. 4, p. 1753.
     I find this striking when read as follows:
Many men are called merciful, but who meets with a faithful man?
But it could also be read in this way:
Many men are called merciful, but who [ever actually] meets with a faithful man?
The Latin isless the question markan exact quotation of the Vulgate of Prov 20:6:
multi homines misericordes vocantur virum autem fidelem quis inveniet
Or, in the Douay translation,
Many men are called merciful:  but who shall find a faithful man?
The Septuagint is close:
Humankind is something great, and a compassionate man something precious, | but to find a faithful man is a chore.
μέγα ἄνθρωπος καὶ τίμιον ἀνὴρ ἐλεήμων, ἄνδρα δὲ πιστὸν ἔργον εὑρεῖν.
But the Hebrew that lies behind the RSV is not:
Many a man proclaims his own loyalty, | but a faithful man who can find?
רָב־אָדָ֗ם יִ֭קְרָא אִ֣ישׁ חַסְדֹּ֑ו וְאִ֥ישׁ אֱ֝מוּנִ֗ים מִ֣י יִמְצָֽא  
     I must therefore conclude that the responsory should really be read in the second way, with an emphasis on the distinction between claim and reality rather than on the idea that fidelity is harder to come by than mercy (since the noun אֱמוּנָה "is closely associated with the divine חֶסֶד" (BDB, sv אֱמוּנָה)).  And that despite the fact that it does seem to be easier to find a "merciful" man (so-called) than one who is faithful to his duty regardless of what (in our time, at least) the world calls "mercy"!
    (But why is אֱ֝מוּנִ֗ים (a passive participle) plural?)

Thursday, August 20, 2015

"O place and greatness"

O place and greatness, millions of false eyes
Are stuck upon thee; volumes of report
Run with these false, and, most contrarious, quest
Upon thy doings; thousand escapes of wit
Make thee the father of their idle dream
And rack thee in their fancies.

     The Duke, at Measure for measure IV.1.63.

Unworthy curiosity, unworthy vanity, unworthy gain, charity, and prudence

turpis curiositas. . . . turpis vanitas. . . . turpis quaestus. . . . caritas. . . . prudentia.

     St. Bernard of Clairvaux "de quinquepartita sciendi intentione" (on the five-forked motive for knowing), Sermon 36.iii/3 on the Song of songs.  SC 452, pp. 112/113.  The only one on which St. Bernard elaborates (by quoting Persius, Satire 1.27) is the second:  "'For you to know is nothing if another knows not that you know [(Scire tuum nihil est, nisi te scire hoc sciat alter)].'"

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

A finger on Eucharistic Prayer II

"You are indeed Holy, O Lord,
the fount of all holiness.
Make holy, therefore, these gifts, we pray,
by sending down your Spirit upon them like the dewfall,
so that they may become for us
the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ."

"Vere Sanctus es, Domine, fons omnis sanctitatis.
Haec ergo dona, quaesumus,
Spiritus tui rore sanctifica,
ut nobis Corpus et Sanguis fiant
Domini nostri Iesu Christi."

     Louis Bouyer's last-minute contribution to Eucharistic Prayer II, according to The memoirs of Louis Bouyer, translated and annotated by John Pepino (Kettering, OH:  Angelico Press, 2015 [2014]), chap. 12, p. 222n90:
  • "fons omnis sanctitatis":  the roughly 7th/8th-century Liber mozarabicus sacramentorum.  Unfortunately, I haven't yet turned it up there:  not by searching, and not by checking the indices, e.g. under fon* and sanctit*.  A search of the 2002 edition of the Library of Latin Texts (e.g. omn* sanctit*, which occurred 5 times; as well as variants; but examine more closely the many more hits on fon* /5 omn* /5 sanct*; omn* /1 sanctit*; and so forth) also failed to turn up anything relevant, the sole exception being Lumen gentium 47 ("the one and undivided Trinity, which in Christ and through Christ is the source and origin of all holiness [(omnis sanctitatis fons et origo)]").
  • "Spiritus tui rore santifica" ("sanctify with the dew of your Holy Spirit"):  Missale Gothicum no. 271, c. 700 (where the phrase appears to be actually "spiritus sancti tui rore perfundas" ("[We ask that you bless this sacrifice with your benediction and] bedew [it] with the dew of your Holy Spirit[, so that it may be for all a lawful Eucharist]"); but check also CCSL 159D (2005)).
I can't tell whether this is supposed to apply to both, or to the latter only:  "as reported in Consilium ad Exsequendam Constitutionem de Sacra Liturgia, Schemata, n. 218, De Missali, 34bis, 19 martii 1967:  Coetus X. De Ordine Missae, typescript, 49".

A chastened Bouyer on conciliarism

"In the best case scenario, that of a truly ecumenical council in the traditional meaning of the term, i.e. actually representative of an undivided Christendom, the most that divine assistance can ensure for the Apostles' successors is the absence of any possible error in the doctrinal definitions such assemblies venture to produce.  But, short of this extreme case, any dosage of approximation, insufficiency, or simple superficiality are to be expected from even so sacrosanct an assembly.
     "What then is to be expected from simple local councils, not to say anything of episcopal conferences regularly manipulated by more or less irresponsible offices, or of assemblies of so-called 'experts,' or of any other such commission!
     "If the Church derives anything of value from them, it is only that which the highest 'responsible' persons (as they are called these days) in the apostolic succession, popes or influential bishops, will sift out, be it by the importance of their sees or by their recognized merits, from its more or less adequate husk and asides.
     "Still, it is up to the sensus communis fideliumunderstood of those who truly are such ['the faithful']—in the final analysis, to make it its own and, at that level, to make it positive and effective by the benefit they will derive from it in the sphere of the only spiritual progress that counts:  that towards Gospel holiness."

      Louis Bouyer, The memoirs of Louis Bouyer, trans. John Pepino (Kettering, OH:  Angelico Press, 2015 [2014]), chap. 12, p. 215-216.  Earlier on p. 215 Bouyer had spoken of "incompetence, intrigue, the smoke and mirrors thrust in each other's way", and cited Gregory of Nazianzus via pp. 367 ff. of Ratzinger's Principles of Catholic theology, which is very good.

"the confusion of apostolate with apostacy"

     Louis Bouyer, crediting Bernanos.  The memoirs of Louis Bouyer, trans. John Pepino (Kettering, OH:  Angelico Press, 2015 [2014]), chap. 9, p. 161.  Presumably "apostolat" and "apostasie".  But I haven't found this in Bernanos yet.  Cf. Louis Bouyer, Religieux et clercs contre Dieu (Paris:  Aubier Montaigne, 1975), 122, referring to the "religious superiors and prelates" of Vatican II (in which, of course, Bouyer himself participated):  "the first fruits of their Council have been mass laicization [(défroquages en masse)] and a generalized confusion of the apostolate with apostacy [(une confusion généralisée de l’apostolat avec l’apostasie)]."

"He that might the vantage best have took"

Alas alas!
Why, all the souls that were were forfeit once,
And He that might the vantage best have took
Found out the remedy.  How would you be
If He which is the top of judgement should
But judge you as you are?  O, think on that,
And mercy then will breathe within your lips
Like man new made.

     Isabella to Angelo, at Measure for measure II.2, ll. 96-103.

"To claim to make anyone understand [the liturgy] without initiating him into the Bible is a contradiction in terms."

"Whether we rejoice in it or deplore it, the liturgy is . . . biblical.  To claim to make anyone understand it without initiating him into the Bible is a contradiction in terms."

     Gaston Morin, "Pour un movement," Études de pastorale liturgique (Paris:  Cerf, 1944):  13 ff., as quoted in Louis Bouyer, The memoirs of Louis Bouyer, trans. John Pepino (Kettering, OH:  Angelico Press, 2015 [2014]), chap. 9, p. 158n44.

Bouyer on the neologism "Paschal mystery"

"Everyone today imagines it [('Paschal mystery')] was a current expression among the Fathers of the Church and the Middle Ages.  In fact, however, as I pointed out to no effect, while Christian Latin does have Paschale sacramentum, it does not have mysterium paschale; furthermore, there has never been an equivalent formula in Greek.  Today I derive bitter satisfaction from this mistake, for it is so symbolic of the misunderstandings that would never cease disfiguring, and finally paralyzing, the intended movement."

     Louis Bouyer, The memoirs of Louis Bouyer, trans. John Pepino (Kettering, OH:  Angelico Press, 2015 [2014]), chap. 9, p. 156.  It was Roguet who proposed the title for the book published in 1947 (Le mystère pascal (paschale sacramentum):  Méditation sur la liturgie des trois derniers jours de la semaine sainte), and therefore Bouyer who must have insisted on the inclusion of "paschale sacramentum".  I have not verified this claim in the great databases unavailable to Bouyer, e.g. the Library of Latin Texts and the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae.  But as Pepino notes, it "ended up being the title of Paul VI's Apostolic Letter 'Mysterii Paschalis' (14 February 1969) approving the new universal norms of the liturgical year and the new General Roman Calendar" (156n36).

"adher[ing] to the Church in her catholicity"

"one has not truly adhered to the Church in her catholicity so long as he mistakes her for what a mere portion of the people of God, which is the Church, may express, and a fortiori achieve, in a particular time and place.  All one can ask of this portion is not actually and deliberately to separate itself, to cut itself off, from the Una Sancta, i.e. from the faith structure and the organic, sacramental common life in the Body of Christ.  But it is the duty of one and all, starting with 'those who seem to be something in it,' (!) [(Gal 6:3)] to work with all their might at connecting themselves to it and to connect it to the fullness and purity of the tradition entrusted once and for all to the Apostles and to their successors. Whether they do this well or poorly is their business, but it will also be the primary object of God's judgment on one and all."

     Louis Bouyer, The memoirs of Louis Bouyer, trans. John Pepino (Kettering, OH: Angelico Press, 2015 [2014]), chap. 8, p. 144-145.

Monday, August 17, 2015

"God holds in derision prayers made to him in deprecation of public calamities, when we do not oppose such proceedings as bring them on us."

Wikimedia Commmons
     Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet, History of the variations of the Protestant churches iv.2, trans. [Levinius Brown], vol. 1 (Dublin:  Richard Coyne, 1829 [1742, 1688]), p. 140.

"Dieu se rit des prières qu’on lui fait pour détourner les malheurs publics, quand on ne s’oppose pas à ce qui se fait pour les attirer."

     Histoire des variations des églises protestantes (1688) iv.2, as reproduced in Œuvres completes de Bossuet 14 (Paris:  Libraire de Louis Vivès, 1863), p. 145.
     I was put onto this by Louis Bouyer's "L'Église catholique en crise" (1978), as trans. John Pepino:  "Heaven mocks the prayers one says to avert evils whose causes one clings to. . . ."
     Bossuet, however, had directed this against Melanchthon, whom he portrayed as suffering the consequences of his own failure to oppose Luther's latest self-contradictory "variation" in support of the resort to arms against one's own Christian prince, presumably the 1531 Warnunge D. Martini Luther, An seine lieben Deudschen (Warnung an seine lieben Deutschen, WA 30 III, pp. (252) 276 ff.; LW 47, pp. 3 ff.).

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Bouyer on the status of "the Bible and the liturgy" among cradle Catholics

     "At about this time an old Saint-Eustache father, a former dragoon who had kept a rather unecclesiastical frankness, told me, 'It's obvious you're a convert; you're far too interested in the Bible and the liturgy!  Real Catholics [he meant by that those who had had only to be born to be so], real Catholics don't attach such importance to them!'
     "How right dear Father [Jules] Lamblin was, and how I thank him for having kept me from any chimeric hope on that score!"

     Louis Bouyer, The memoirs of Louis Bouyer, trans. John Pepino (Kettering, OH:  Angelico Press, 2015 [2014]), chap. 8, p. 144.  Fr. Bouyer's love of the liturgy had been inculcated within Protestantism by a certain brand of French and Scandinavian Lutheranism (as well as Anglicanism).  I am happy to say that my experience of this hasn't been as pronounced as that of Fr. Bouyer.  Cf. The decomposition of Catholicism, trans. Charles Underhill Quinn (Chicago:  Franciscan Herald Press, 1969 [1968]), 74:  "Had we not reached the point of defining (seriously!) mysteries as things that must be believed without our seeking to understand them?  In everything all one had to do was to do what one was told, repeat the correct formulas, and reproduce a rubber-stamp mode of behavior.  Since the authority, or tradition (that tradition about which the [ideally purely heteronomous] authority could now say:  Io son la tradizione!), was the source of everything, obedience was 'everything,' and it seemed that the ideal obedience was one that was most perfectly unintelligent and most completely uninterested.  As one of my old colleagues said to me soon after joining the Oratory:  'You can see that you were not always a Catholic.  You're much too interested in things like Holy Scripture or the liturgy.  Real Catholics don't attach such importance to those things.' . . . like Scripture, if one gave too much attention to the liturgy in a manner that was not exclusively rubrical, it betrayed only too clearly a notion, or rather an application of the Christian religion that had nothing in common with 'real Catholicism.'  Understand by this, naturally, the Catholicism of people who were Catholics simply because their parents were before them, and for whom the problem was to keep it intact; to do this they should have as little to do with it as possiblelive in it, yes, but subsist from it, certainly not!"