Roman Text from The Saint Andrew Daily Missal.
The Ancient Custom of Blessing the Fields
on Rogation Sunday,
at Hever, Kent,
Photo: 9 February 1967.
Source: From geograph.org.uk
Author: Ray Trevena.
THE LESSER LITANIES.
In consequence of the public calamities that afflicted the Diocese of Vienne-in-Dauphiny, France, in the 5th-Century, Saint Mamertus instituted a Solemn Penitential Procession on the Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, before Ascension Day.
Under an Order of the Council of Orleans, in 511 A.D., the Devotion spread to the rest of France. In 816 A.D., Pope Leo III introduced it to Rome and it soon became a general observance throughout the Church.
The Litany of the Saints and the Psalms and Collects, sung in Procession on these days, are supplications; hence, the term "Rogations" applied to them. The object of these Devotions is to appease the anger of God and avert the scourges of His Justice and to draw down the Blessings of God on the Fruits of the Earth.
Available on YouTube at
Violet Vestments are used as a token of Penance, and the Paschal Candle is left unlighted. The Litany of the Saints, consisting of Prayer in the form of a dialogue, is an admirable manner of Prayer, which it should be our purpose to cultivate.
The Celebrant wears a Violet Stole and Cope. All in the Choir stand as they sing the Antiphon (Psalm xliii. 26) Exsurge, Domine, adjuva nos . . .
When the Antiphon is finished, all kneel, and two Cantors begin the Litany of the Saints, the Choir singing the Responses. Each Invocation must be repeated, except where it is found impossible to have the Procession. At Sancta Maria, all stand, and the Procession begins to move, preceded by the Processional Cross, and followed by the Clergy, Celebrant and Faithful.
If a Church or Chapel is visited, the Antiphon, Versicle, and Collect of the local Patron Saint may be sung, or the Stational Mass Exaudivit may be said. On leaving the Church or Chapel, the interrupted Litany is resumed.
MASS OF ROGATION.
Monday: At Saint Mary Major;
Tuesday: At Saint John Lateran;
Wednesday: At Saint Peter's.
Indulgence of 30 years and 30 Quarantines each day.
The Mass, throughout, points to the efficacy of the Prayer of the Just Man, when humble, sure, and persistent. Elias, by Prayer, closed and opened the heavens (Epistle), and Our Lord shows us, by two Parables, that God gives His Holy Spirit to whomsoever asks Him, because He is good (Gospel, Alleluia). In our afflictions, let us place our trust in God and He will hear our Prayers (Introit, Collect).
The Mass of Rogation is said during or after the Procession of both the Greater Litanies (25 April) and the Lesser Litanies.