The Symbolism of the Offertory - Part 1

Part I from the Angelus Press Conference (Oct 10 2014) by Fr. Daniel Couture

Dominus Vobiscum!

De Missa numquam satis! We can never have enough of the Holy Mass!

Archbishop Lefebvre gave his life, his reputation, his all, so that we may continue to have the privilege of being able to have the Holy Mass today.

For the glory of the Most Blessed Trinity, for the love of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, for the love of the Church, for the salvation of the world, for the salvation of souls, keep this testament of Our Lord Jesus Christ! Keep the Sacrifice of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Keep the Mass of All Time!  And you will see civilization reflourish, a civilization which is not of this world, but a civilization which leads to the Catholic City which is heaven..

How true!

When he urged us to keep the Holy Mass, it was not just the ritual of the Traditional Latin Mass, the prayers, actions, rites, sacred chant of this ‘most beautiful thing this side of Heaven’, it was certainly all that indeed, but all that and what all that means, represents, conveys: “our wisdom, our justice, our sanctification, our redemption” (I Cor 1, 30).

It may be good to quote here, as a profession of faith, a major text of the Council of Trent on the subject.

In this divine sacrifice which is celebrated in the mass, that same Christ is contained and immolated in an unbloody manner, who once offered Himself in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross; the holy Synod teaches, that this sacrifice is truly propitiatory and that by means thereof this is effected, that we obtain mercy, and find grace in seasonable aid.

For the victim is one and the same, the same now offering by the ministry of priests, who then offered Himself on the cross, the manner alone of offering being different.

Not only for the sins, punishments, satisfactions, and other necessities of the faithful who are living, but also for those who are departed in Christ, and who are not as yet fully purified, is it rightly offered, according to a tradition of the apostles.  (Chapter 2)

The Holy Mass is first and foremost one of the seven Sacraments of our Holy Religion. It is a sacrament, a sacred sign, it sheds on us ex opere operato, by its own power, its own ritual, divine grace through these innumerable signs which constitute the material aspects of our Roman Liturgy.

The subject of this conference is the symbolism of the Offertory. Besides urging you to read the well-known commentaries on the Holy Mass, such as those by Dom Guéranger and Fr. Cochem, and those published by Angelus Press, my goal is chiefly to make you appreciate a little better this pearl of great price, and especially to help you understand better a fundamental aspect of its spirituality, to help you connect yourself, unite yourself to the Mass daily, and if I may dare say – I will try to show you how – constantly throughout your daily activities.  “Give us this day our daily Bread.”