Mount Calvary Church
A Roman Catholic Parish
The Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of S. Peter
Eutaw Street and Madison Avenue
Rev. Albert Scharbach, Pastor
Dr. Allen Buskirk, Choirmaster
8:00 A.M. Said Mass
10:00 A.M. Sung Mass
February 24, 2019
The Feast of the Chair of St. Peter
The Patronal Feast of the North American Ordinariate
An Anglican Folk Mass, Martin Shaw
Henry Walford Davies (1869-1941)
God be in my head, and in my understanding; God be in mine eyes, and in my looking; God be in my mouth, and in my speaking; God be in my heart, and in my thinking; God be at mine end, and at my departing.
Here is the Clare College Chapel Choir.
Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548–1611)
Tu es Petrus et super hanc petram aedificabo Ecclesiam meam, et portae inferi non praevalebunt adversus eam. Et tibi dabo claves regni caelorum.
Thou art Peter and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it. And I will give Thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven.
Here is The Cardinal’s Music.
Firmly I believe and truly (NASHOTAH) is adapted from John Henry Newman’s 1865 poem The Dream of Gerontius about the progress of a soul from death to salvation. As an Evangelical, Newman (1801—1890) rejected the doctrines of purgatory and the intercession of saints, but as part of his conversion (1845), he came to a realization of the fullness of the communion of saints: those striving on earth, those being purified by the divine fire, and those in heaven moved by love to pray for those on earth and in purgatory. The poem (Greek Geron: old man), relates the journey of a pious man’s soul from his deathbed to his judgment before God and settling into Purgatory. As the priests and assistants pray the prayers for the dying, Gerontius recites this creed and prays for mercy. Sanctus Fortis, Sanctus Deus is from the Good Friday liturgy and is alluded to in the line “him the holy, him the strong.”
#393 Faith of our fathers (ST CATHERINE) by Frederick William Faber (1814–1863), in its original form, spoke to Catholics of their history, and conflicts (‘living still/in spite of dungeon, fire and sword’; ‘Our Fathers, chained in prisons dark,/Were still in heart and conscience free’), as well as their aspirations. Faber wrote the hymn at a critical time for Roman Catholics in the British Isles: in England: Catholic Emancipation and the restoration of the Catholic Hierarchy were key issues; meanwhile Ireland was still suffering from the devastation caused by the Great Famine, and was wrestling with the inequities occasioned by British rule.
From all Thy saints in warfare (KING’S LYNN) is by Horatio Nelson (1823—1913), nephew of Admiral Horatio Nelson. He became 3rd Earl Nelson in 1835. In 1857 he and John Keble, one of the leaders of the Oxford Movement, compiled the Sarum Hymnal. This hymn was published in 1864. It honors the saints while carefully avoiding mention of any intercessory role.
The Chair of St. Peter in Antioch
While St. Peter is widely known as the first bishop of Rome, the “prince of the apostles” started out his ministry in the “Rome of the East,” the ancient city of Antioch.
The Roman Empire at the time of Christ hailed Antioch as the new capital of the East over that of Alexandria. It became a pivotal city, one favored by the emperors of Rome and a vital part of the Empire.
It also became an important city for Christians in the first few decades after Jesus’s death. Antioch became the home to many Jewish Christians who fled Jerusalem after St. Stephen was stoned to death. For this and other reasons it made perfect sense for Peter to minister to the spiritual needs of these early Christians.
According to the Golden Legend, Peter arrived in Antioch to preach the good news of Christ. However, Theophilus, governor of the city, did not want him there and said, “Peter, why are you corrupting my people?” Peter tried to convert Theophilus, who immediately had Peter imprisoned.
St. Paul heard about Peter’s imprisonment and visited Theophilus in order to gain his trust. While there St. Paul was able to visit Peter and then urged Theophilus to release him. Theophilus refused, but was curious about St. Paul’s claim that Peter could raise the dead. He said that if Peter could raise his son that he would release him. Miraculously, the governor’s son was raised from the dead through Peter’s intercession and he was given freedom in Antioch to preach the gospel. Theophilus would later receive an account of Jesus’ life through the hands of St. Luke.
Whatever the veracity of this story is, the people of Antioch welcomed Peter’s preaching and built a chair for him to be placed above everyone else while he taught them about Jesus. It is believed that Peter stayed in Antioch for seven years before going to Rome to become the first bishop there.
In the centuries after Peter’s death, it was the custom for bishops to celebrate the anniversary of their initial consecration. The Church appointed February 22 as the anniversary of Peter’s elevation to a bishop in Antioch. This was called the “Chair of St. Peter in Antioch,” referencing the chair that Peter sat in to teach the people.
Over time this feast was merged with the feast commemorating the “Chair of St. Peter in Rome,” and became a single feast on February 22.
A Digression on the Popular Use of Hymns
Faber wrote an Irish version of Faith of our Fathers. This version, entitled ‘the same Hymn for Ireland’ featured seven stanzas. In it ‘Mary’s prayers/ Shall keep our country fast to thee’. The most important alterations/additions were as follows (the last two lines remain the same in all versions):
1. Faith of our Fathers! living still, In spite of dungeon, fire and sword: Oh! Ireland's hearts beat high with joy Whene'er they hear that glorious word, Faith of our Fathers, &c. 5. Faith of our fathers! guile and force To do thee bitter wrong unite; But Erin's Saints shall fight for us, And keep undimmed thy blessed light. 6. Faith of our Fathers! distant shores Their happy faith to Ireland owe; Then in our home, oh, shall we not Break the dark plots against thee now? 7. Faith of our Fathers! Days of old Within our hearts speak gallantly; For ages thou hast stood by us, Dear Faith! And we will stand by thee.
Though ‘Faith of our fathers’ was intended by Faber for use in church and in private devotions (it became one of the most popular Catholic hymns of the 19th century), it acquired a more secular purpose, though still with religious associations: it is sung at the All-Ireland Gaelic football final, though now as part of the half-time show, rather than before the start of the match. The sport has important connections with the Catholic Church: parish priests were often chairmen or presidents of local clubs, and bishops were patrons of provincial Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) councils. Indeed Thomas Croke (1824-1902), Archbishop of Cashel and an ardent Irish nationalist, was instrumental in founding the GAA. While traditions such as the bishop’s throwing out the first ball at the All-Ireland final have passed into history, the singing of ‘Faith of our fathers’ still survives as an expression of communal feeling, and also of pride in Irish national identity, with which Gaelic sports are particularly associated.