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What is the Breviary Online?

 

The Official Prayer of the Church

 

Next to the Holy Mass, the Divine Office (or Breviary) is the most important prayer offered to God.  It is offered by the Church and in the name of the Church, conferring multifold graces and blessings on those who recite it worthily, attentively and devoutly.  Normally the domain of priests and religious, the Church has continued to recommend her official prayer to the faithful.  However, until now, the complexity of the rubrics and a lack of suitable translations has deterred many.

 

Now Accessible to the Layman

 

With the help of modern technology, it has become easier to overcome these problems.  The result is the Roman Breviary published by the Confraternity of Ss. Peter & Paul in both Latin and English.  No knowledge of the liturgy is required.  All you have to do is click on the feastday, and then on the Canonical Hour you want to say.  The rest is just like reading a book—everything is laid out for you in order according to the rubrics of the day.  No more flicking through the ribboned sections of a weighty volume.  No more apprehension that you are forgetting some obscure rubric.  It's all there spelled out, in order, every day.

 

Learn More about the Breviary

 

And if you do want to deepen your knowledge of the Breviary or the Confraternity, this website can help you with that too.  We already provide a short history of the Breviary, instructions on when to recite which Hours, a brief commentary on the psalms, and much more.  And for those who would really like to understand the rubrics in greater depth, we provide in our bookstore a detailed but simply written electronic manual entitled How to Say the Breviary.  We shall be expanding this website regularly with more information, so check back with us frequently.  And may God reward your prayers by bestowing on you all those spiritual favours that come from a devout reading of the Church's Divine Office.

 

Is this Breviary for You?

 

Check out the Features

 

Link to our Features Page to see what a difference our online edition of the traditional Roman Breviary can make in your life.

 

Check out a Sample Day

 

Link to the Office for the Feast of St. Pius X, our secondary patron.  You can browse through the various Hours of the Office and get a feel for what to expect.

 

Check out the artwork, the original photos, play some of the music.  We hope you enjoy the experience.   More importantly do you think this approach to prayer is something that could be spiritually beneficial for you?

How Do I Get Started?

 

Register and Subscribe

 

Register

 

Link to our online Breviary homepage.  Underneath the login form is a box, with the words First-Time User? and Register Here in red letters underlined.  Click on this link and complete the short form.  Click the Sign up link.

 

Subscribe

 

Log in to our webiste using the user name and password you have chosen.  When you first attempt to Recite the Breviary you will be linked to the subscription page.  Here you may choose from our monthly subscription of $2.50 (USD) per month, or $24.00 for an annual subscription.  Or simply send a check to the address provided on our Contacts page.

  The Divine Motherhood of the Blessed Virgin Mary

October 11, 2015

A Most Important Event

What’s the most important thing that’s happened since the last time you were here? If we spend a little time, we may come up with a few events that either happened to us personally, or maybe in the world at large. Important political changes perhaps that will end up having far-reaching effects for many years. I could ask you what was the most important so far this century, and you’d probably say that it was 9/11. But what if I asked you to narrow it down to the four most important events EVER? Maybe if this were a classroom I’d have you write down your answers, but today I’ll just have to give you what, in my opinion, are those four events which stand out more than any other because of their effect on the history of mankind.

The first must surely be the Creation. Everything stems from that moment when God said “Let there be light”, and the darkness that was upon the face of the deep was illuminated by the brightness of God’s goodness and love. Knowing full well that his greatest creation—Man—would fail him, God nevertheless created time and space for him, so that man could know, love and serve God in this world and be happy with him forever in the next.

The second event happened a while later in that little part of the universe where man lived, the Garden of Eden. The betrayal of God’s love by Adam and Eve when they disobeyed him—again this was the cause of all that followed— the closing of heaven’s gates, our own fallen nature, the expulsion of man from paradise, and the sacrifice of God’s only-begotten Son our Redeemer.

The third event, which has particular relevance to us on this feastday of Our Lady’s Motherhood, was that moment when the Blessed Virgin Mary accepted her role in the Redemption story, and said those words: “Let it be done unto me according to thy word.” With this, Our Lady submitted herself completely to the will of God in all things, repeating in a sense the word of God “Let there be light.” For at that moment the Son of God became incarnate, was made flesh, and dwelt amongst us. Without this acquiescence by Our Lady, there would not be today the light of salvation in this world, and the gates of heaven would still remain closed in our face.

The fourth event was the death of Christ on the Cross. This ultimate and most perfect sacrifice, infinite in its merits, was the only offering truly acceptable to an infinite God, infinitely offended by man. Only a God-Man could expiate those offences and take away the sins of the world, thus re-opening the gates of heaven. A couple of days ago, interestingly enough, we commemorated the feast of St. Denis. He was a pagan who lived at the same time as Our Lord but in a land far away. He lived in Athens, Greece. And on the very day Christ died on that Cross, there was a most unusual and unnatural solar eclipse visible in the sky above Athens. St. Denis was awestruck by this sight, and is said to have remarked: “Either the God of Nature is suffering or else the mechanism of the universe is breaking up.” Not since the Creation of the universe had Nature given such a sign to mankind. But this was the moment when the sins of mankind were forgiven, when the gates of heaven were opened again to all those who, like Our Blessed Mother at the Annunciation, would accept to follow the will of God.

There are, of course, other extremely noteworthy things that happened, especially during Our Lord’s life. Think of the Last Supper, the Resurrection, Pentecost, and so on. But I think if we have to narrow it down to the four biggest events, it would be the ones I’ve mentioned.

And now I’m going to add a fifth event. And surprisingly enough I’m going to tell you when it’s going to happen. An event of earth-shattering importance is about to take place. In fact, it’s going to happen in a few minutes from now. Its importance is going to be right up there along with the Creation, the Fall of Man, the Incarnation, and the Crucifixion. It will happen when I say the words of consecration at Mass, and God himself becomes present on this altar.

Don’t be disappointed! This may seem like an anti-climax after the build-up I just gave it. But let’s think about it a moment—the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is nothing other than the continuation of the Sacrifice of Calvary. It is not just a single event, but a “continuation”, an eternal moment commemorating that single event on Calvary, and just as important. The same merits and graces that flowed from Our Lord’s side on the Cross now flow from the Holy Eucharist present with us on the altar. Just as God uttered the words “Let there be light”, just as Our Lady exclaimed “Let it be done unto me according to thy word,” so now the priest whispers “This is my Body.” And the result is the same: “The people that wandered in darkness have seen a great light”. “A light to enlighten the Gentiles and to be the glory of thy people Israel.” This same light of God’s Word that lit up the darkness of the universe, this same light of the world who dwelt amongst us in the womb of the Mother of God, now illuminates our own souls as we receive him in Holy Communion.

On this feast of Our Lady’s Motherhood, how can we not recognize this most extraordinary and awe-inspiring fact that when Our Lady accepted to be the Mother of God, that same God, Creator of the universe, dwelt within her. “The God whom earth and sea and sky adore and laud and magnify, whose might they own, whose praise they swell, in Mary's womb vouchsafed to dwell.” And now today again, that same Creator has deigned to descend to our own poor unworthy souls to dwell within us in Holy Communion.

This union with God is just a foretaste of the glory that will be ours in heaven, where we will be united with God forever. After knowing, loving and serving God in this world, the destiny that God wants for us in the next world is the fulfillment of that union with him that we experience this morning in Holy Communion. For us here today, and for all those around the world who have been given the grace to share this Sacrament, and every time we are able to attend Mass and receive Holy Communion, this eternal split-second of Calvary renewed is surely the one other greatest event in human history. This union with God that will be ours today in Holy Communion, is the reason why the universe was created, it is the reason why the Son of God became incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and why he died on the Cross, it is the reason why Our Blessed Lady was chosen to be the Mother of God. Let us pray to her today for the graces to understand the enormity of what is about to happen on this altar, and that our Communion with God’s Son and hers may be completed and fulfilled at the hour of our death. Amen.

 Sermons from the Chaplain