September 24, 2008

It's Sad That I Just Noticed This Now

I don't know what it is, but I'm just a "bear for (Catholic) detail" lately. (Apologies to Irwin Fletcher)

One of the first portable practices I learned as a Catholic was how to pray the Rosary. From somewhere or other I knew that you were supposed to pray the Joyful Mysteries on Mondays and Thursdays, the Sorrowful Mysteries on Tuesdays and Fridays, and the Glorious Mysteries on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays.

When John Paul II suggested the Luminous Mysteries back in 2002, I liked them a lot, and somewhere along the way I learned that you were supposed to pray them on Thursdays. But it wasn't until this morning, sitting in church, that I noticed how this knocks down the Joyful Mysteries to one day a week, while the Glorious Mysteries still had three days. No fair! It's especially too bad, I thought, because the Joyful Mysteries day is a perfect time to substitute the Franciscan Crown for the standard Dominican Rosary.

This has to be evened out, I thought. So, Fridays and Sundays have to be the Sorrowful and Glorious Mysteries, respectively, for obvious reasons. Given those necessities, I decided that the Glorious Mysteries should cede Saturday to the Joyful.

When I got back to my room, I looked in a Rosary pamphlet that I had picked up for the kids RCIA, and there it was, arranged anew just as I had decided. So much for paying attention to what I was doing all this time! Age quod agis, frater.

P.s. My hometown church is staffed by the Dominican friars. One time, after the Luminous Mysteries had appeared, I asked one of the friars what they were going to do about it, seeing as their traditional, fifteen decade habit rosary was now sort of obsolete. Would they upgrade to one with twenty decades? To my surprise, the brother seemed genuinely annoyed by the whole business, and by the failure of John Paul II to consult the Dominicans before "changing" their Rosary.


ben in denver said...

I pray the Joyful on Mondays and Saturdays, the Luminous on Tuesdays, the Sorrowful on Wednesdays and Fridays and the Glorious on Thursdays and Sundays.

This arrangement, while preserving the necessity of the Glorious on Sundays and Sorrowful Firdays, gives me the sequence in order of Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful and Glorious on Monday - Thursday, and I enjoy that.

Speaking of private devotions, Are you doing anything to observe the Ember Days this week? My family was not up for my suggestion to fast, so we are abstaining from meat.

ben in denver said...

One more thing....

Happy Bl. Herman the Cripple Day!

There really could be no more fitting discussion that the Rosary on the day we commemorate the author of the Salve Regina.

Brother Charles said...

Thoughtful plan. I like the way it preserves the revelatory order better than how I arranged it.

Ember days are pretty new to me. I noticed them around this time in my 1962 missal but I didn't explore too much. I'll have to look it up!

ben in denver said...

There is a very good article on Ember Days in the current issue of Latin Mass Magazine.

Because they are a liturgical observation based on the cycle of the seasons, I would think that their observance, though now completely optional, would resonate well with franciscanism.

Their observance is ancient. Pope St. Leo the Great thought they extended back to apolsolic times. In any case it is clear that Ember Days were observed from at least the third century to 1968.

Would you like me to mail a copy of the article to you?

Brother Charles said...

No worries about mailing. In this big monastery I'm sure I can find something to read. Interesting!