Cloisters of Saint John Lateran, Rome. Source:

Monday, 27 June 2016

Within The Octave Of Saint John The Baptist.

Text from The Saint Andrew Daily Missal,
unless stated otherwise.

Within The Octave Of Saint John The Baptist.

English: The Voice in the Desert.
Français: La voix dans le désert.
Artist: James Tissot (1836-1902).
Date: Between 1886 and 1894.
Current location: Brooklyn Museum, New York City.
Credit line: Purchased by public subscription.
Source/Photographer: Online Collection of Brooklyn Museum;
Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2007, 00.159.44_PS1.jpg.
(Wikimedia Commons)

The Church, honouring The Saints in proportion to the part they played in The Mystery of The Incarnation of The Word, gives to Saint John a special place. [The Rubrics which accompany the Bull Divino Afflatu of Pope Saint Pius X, establish the following order among the Feasts: "The Feasts of The Lord; of The Blessed Virgin; of The Angels; of Saint John the Baptist; of Saint Joseph; of The Holy Apostles."]

Each day in The Mass, as well as at The Confiteor, at The Suscipe and at The Nobis quoque peccatoribus, the name of Saint John the Baptist precedes that of The Apostles. It is the same in The Litany of The Saints. His Feast immediately precedes that of The Apostles Saint Peter and Saint Paul. By ending the Mission of The Prophets and commencing that of The Apostles, he is the link between The Old Testament and The New Testament.

Let us, also, give to Saint John the Baptist the place of honour which is due to him in our Veneration of The Saints. The Veneration must, indeed, be hierarchically ordered so that we may never forget that Jesus is the principal author of our Redemption, and that The Saints are more or less great as they are more or less united to Him as secondary instruments.

"Kyrie Eleison".
From The Mass in Honour of Saint John the Baptist
by Jean-René Quignard.
Sung by Saint Mary, Star-of-the-Sea, Schola,
Jackson, Michigan.
Available on YouTube at

The Feast of The Nativity of Saint John the Baptist falls in the Season when The Cycle shows us The Church which, as this Saint foretold, was born in the Baptism of The Holy Ghost and of Fire at Pentecost, and goes on continually developing herself. It is, indeed, to The Holy Precursor that she owes it to have known Jesus, The Spouse that makes her The Fruitful Mother of many Souls.

As with the Jews, a friend was the intermediary between The Bride and The Spouse and prepared The Wedding Feast, Saint John the Baptist is called in the Gospel "The Friend of The Spouse". It is he whom God has chosen to prepare for The Lord, by his Preaching and Baptism of Penance, a perfect people. And, after having adorned The Bride, he presents The Spouse to her. "John the Baptist was the man sent as a witness, so that, through him, all should believe in Jesus."

Jesus comes to him in the waters of The River Jordan and, at this Divine Contact, the water acquired the virtue which, in Baptism, causes our Souls to be born to Supernatural Life. As Saint John the Baptist Baptises Christ in The River Jordan, he hears The Voice of The Father proclaiming that Jesus is His Well-Beloved Son. He sees The Holy Ghost hovering over Him in the form of a Dove and he reveals that Jesus is "The Lamb of God".

"Agnus Dei".
From The Mass in Honour of Saint John the Baptist
by Jean-René Quignard.
Sung by Saint Mary, Star-of-the-Sea, Schola,
Jackson, Michigan.
Available on YouTube at

Let us remember that, after having Baptised The Master, the one who is called John the Baptist has also presided over our own Christening, for all The Baptistries (particularly that of Saint John Lateran, in Rome) are Dedicated to him, and his image is to be used for the adornment of Baptismal Fonts.

Having thus been brought by him to Jesus, let us also through Saint John the Baptist approach The Eucharist, reciting the words of The Agnus Dei, by which he indicated The Saviour.

Mass: As on The Feast Day. De ventre.

Jesus Testifies about John the Baptist.

And when they went their way, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John:
What went you out into the desert to see ? a reed shaken with the wind ?
But what went you out to see ? a man clothed in soft garments ?
Behold they that are clothed in soft garments, are in the houses of Kings.
But what went you out to see ? a prophet ? yea I tell you, and more than a prophet.

For this is he of whom it is written:
Behold I send my Angel before thy face,
who shall prepare thy way before thee.

Amen I say to you, there hath not risen among them that are born of women
a greater than John the Baptist:
Yet he that is the lesser in The Kingdom of Heaven
is greater than he.

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