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Here followeth the Second Part of the Mass.
As for the second part of the mass, that is from the offering unto the Paternoster, every one oweth to understand that after the creature hath heard the word of God, that is the holy Evangel, and he adjousteth to it firm or steadfast faith, which is figured by the creed, he oweth then to offer or give his heart to God, for therefore followeth the offering. And to the end that the people be the more incited, the priest returneth him toward the folk, and saith: Dominus vobiscum, that is to say: Our Lord be with you, even so as he would say: If our Lord be not with you, ye can do no good work ne good offering toward him, and after the priest saith; Oremus, inciting us to honour and to pray God, then he saith the offertory.
After, the priest taketh the lid of the chalice on which is the host, which oweth to be converted to the body of our Lord, and offereth it to God the Father, saying: Suscipe sancte Pater, etc., Father wilt thou receive this hostie without tache or spot, the which I, thy servant unworthy, offer to thee as to my God, very and certain, for all the sins that I have done without number, and also for all them that are here about me, and for all the fiables of God that are alive, and for all them that are passed out of this world to the intent that this oblation may be profitable to me and to them, to the salvation of our souls in the life permanable or everlasting.
After, the priest maketh commixtion of wine and water together, and here it is to wit that, by the said water is understood the people, and the wine representeth our Lord, in signifying that the said water and wine show to us humility, and also the commixtion that the people oweth to have with God. It may be said also that this water is meddled with the said wine for this, that both blood and water issued out of the side of our Lord, and for this he saith: Deus qui humanæ substantiæ, etc., in the which orison he prayeth for all, to the end that by the virtue of the same mixion the people may be united to God by very love and direction.
After, the priest offereth the chalice to God, saying: Offerimus tibi, in signifying how our Lord Jesu Christ offered himself to God the Father crucified on the altar of the cross for our health.
After, the priest covereth the chalice, for this, that none ordure should touch to that holy sacrifice, and after maketh a cross over the hostie, and over the chalice, saying: Veni sanctificator, etc., that is at much to say as: King Almighty, I pray thee that thou wilt bless or hallow this sacrifice in thy sweet name, for heart devout to have pardon.
After, the priest draweth himself to the right side of the altar, in representing our Lord, and there he receiveth the offerings of the creatures. Then the people by devotion come and offereth to the ensample of the people of God, which people offered within the temple of Solomon to God. One offered gold, the other silver, others offered bread, and others offered wine, and others divers manners of offerings. After, the priest washeth his hands, for it appertaineth that so precious a sacrament be worthily and cleanly made.
After, he draweth himself even, in the midst of the altar, and there he maketh a deep inclination, saying: Suscipe sancta Trinitas, etc. And the same inclination may signify the inclination of God, which inclined him after the sacrament to the feet or the apostles, and prayed to God the Father. After, he kisseth the altar, in signifying that the virtue of the passion peaceth the creatures to him. After, the priest returneth himself toward the folk and saith: Orate pro me fratres, etc., and in this he prayeth the people that they will pray God for him. For that is none other thing to say but: Right dear brethren, pray you God that I may make this sacrifice worthily, so that I may see God joyously.
After, the priest returneth him towards the altar and beginneth his orisons secret, the which are said for the same cause for which the first orisons be said, and as many in number, and it is to wit that these orisons are said softly and secretly, for this that the priest is nigh the sacrament, and therefore he will have none other empeshment or letting, neither by voice ne by manner, for our Lord, to the intent he might more secretly honour and pray, he went from his disciples as far as a stone might be thrown. These orisons here be also said low or secretly for this, that when our
Lord had raised Lazarus, the Jews would have slain him, wherefore he drew himself into the city of Ephraim, in a place all alone, and from that time he ceased his predication, unto Palm Sunday even. Then he came to the house of Simon and openly began to preach, and for this the priest at the end of his orisons in dressing his hands upon high saith: Per omnia secula seculorum, and for this, that he is as messenger to God for the people. The people hearing this message, answereth: Amen. And there the priest beginneth the Preface, the which is so called, for that it is the preparation or first apparel that goeth before the sacrifice principal, and therefore he saluteth in saying: Dommus vobiscum, in saying that we prepare or make us ready so that our Lord may be and dwell with us, and the people answereth: Et cum spiritu tuo. And thus the people and the priest both pray each for other.
After, the priest inciting us saith: Sursum corda, that is to say that the people heave their hearts upon high toward God. Then answereth the people: Habemus ad dominum, that is to say: We heave them to God, and therefore the people, that there in such hour or in that time hath not set their hearts to God may of light lie.
After, the priest saith: Gratias agamus domino deo nostro, that is to say: Yield we graces and thankings to God! For if the people in that time hath some devotion, they ought to laud and thank God therefor, and for this, the clerk, for all the people, answereth: Dignum et justum est, right even so as we would say: Worthy and lawful thing is to laud God, just thing is to honour him, and there the priest maketh mention how the angels and archangels and all the court of heaven praise and laud God. And for this at the end he prayeth, that with that foresaid company we all may praise and laud God, saying with firm devotion: Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus, the which words follow after the preface, for right even there the priest representing our mother holy church, having hope to be accompanied with both angels and archangels, confirmeth himself to them and saith: Sanctus, etc. And it is to wit that this sanctus is divided in two parts, the first part containeth the lauding of the angels, and the second containeth the lauding of the people. The priest then, as to the first part he may represent the angels of heaven, of the which it is read in the book of Isaiah the prophet that the seraphim cried with a high voice one to another: Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus, etc., in praying to the Trinity, saying: Holy Father, Holy Son, and Holy Spirit, all earth is replenished with thy glory. As to the second part, he may represent the people of Israel, of the which we read that, when our Lord descended from the mountain of Olivet, and he came to the city of Jerusalem, they cried with a high voice: Benedictus qui venit in nomine domini, etc., that is as much to say: Blessed be he that cometh in the name of God, of him we require pardon, and for this benediction or blessing, which is so sweet, the priest maketh a cross, the which representeth to us that it is our Lord that cometh to be sacrificed on the holy cross, and there he descendeth and will be consecrate, to the end that men may see him presently, and therefore verily of the devout people that heareth the mass right there, oweth to draw themselves within the chamber of their conscience to the end that they may cherish thereon that sweet Lamb by devout orison, praying that his goodly coming be consolation and joy unto every creature. And there also they owe to think and consider on their evil deeds and offences, to the end that they may show and declare them by firm and steadfast contrition to him that presently cometh there, and thus the creature shall mowe thank and regracie God by devout contemplation. After all these things followeth the canon, which is so named canon for the mystery of the precious sacrament that is made and consecrated, and this same canon is said low or secretly for the virtue of the words, to the end that they be not held in filth. For anciently they were preferred and said high, wherefore it was known of the most part of the folk, and they sang it through the streets. Wherefore we find that sometimes shepherds took some bread and put it on a stone, and on it they said the words that are written in the canon, and that same bread was turned and converted into a piece of flesh, and soon after, by the will of God, fire descended from heaven upon them, and they were all combusted and burnt. And therefore the holy fathers stablished these words to be said low, also that none should say them without he were a priest.
That same canon containeth nine parts. As to the first part, the priest inclineth himself before the altar, the which inclination signifieth or betokeneth the humility of our he inclined himself at the cross, and there thepriest speaking to our Lord saith thus: Te igitur clementissime, etc., that is to say: Father, right debonair, we thee pray thou wilt Lord. which he showed when accept and bless these sweet oblations and these holy sacrifices without corruption. And there the priest kisseth the altar, signifying the compassion that he hath of the passion of our Lord Jesu Christ, and after, he maketh three times the sign of the cross, both over the bread and over the wine, and these three crosses signifieth how our Lord was given and offered in three manners: First of God the Father for our redemption, secondly of Judas to the Jews by great treason, thirdly of the Jews to Pilate by great detraction.
After, in the second part, the priest prayeth for all holy church universally, saying: Offerimus, etc., that is to say: We offer, and therefore the priest speaketh not in his own person but in the person of holy church. There nis none so wicked and evil, after that he is priest, but he may consecrate the precious body of our Lord Jesu Christ.
After, in the third part, the priest hath in a special mind all the subjects of holy church, and specially in that passage he saith joining his hands: Memento etiam domine famulorum, etc. That is to say: Sir, have thou mind on thy servants. And there the priest resteth, and hath special memory of all the creatures for whom he entendeth for to pray, and he hath also mind particular on the persons whom he is bound to pray for, and it is to wit that this memory is for the persons that be on live. After, he prayeth for all them that hear his mass with faith and devotion.
After, in the fourth part, to the end that he himself, and they also which he hath had memory of, may have participation in the glory of paradise with the angels, holy apostles, and martyrs, he saith a devout orison that beginneth thus: Communicantes, etc. In the which orison the priest maketh special commemoration of the Virgin Mary, of the twelve apostles of Jesu Christ, and of many martyrs.
After, in the fifth part, the priest inclineth him and saith an orison that beginneth thus: Hanc igitur oblationem, etc. In which orison he doth four things: first he prayeth to God that he will receive our service, the second is that we may have very peace in God, the third is that he from damnation will keep us. The fourth is that with his chosen he will lead us.
And after, the priest coming nigh to the principal consecration, he saith: Quam oblationem, and there the priest maketh five times the sign of the cross over the bread and over the wine, in the remembrance and tokening of the five wounds of our Lord, and of his prayer the sentence may be such: Sire, with heart we pray that of the same this oblation be made and consecrate, approved and confirmed in a hostie right reasonable, and in sacrifice acceptable, so that this bread be transferred into thy body, and this wine translated into the blood of thy right dear Son that for us suffered great torment.
And therefore he saith after in the sixth part of the canon of the mass as hereafter followeth. And here it is to wit that all that the priest doth as to the consecration, representeth or betokeneth all that our Lord did to his disciples the day of the Cene, that is on Sherethursday, where he took bread, and yielding graces to God the Father, broke and gave to his disciples, saying: Take and eat, here is mine own proper body. And in the same manner doth the priest in the sixth part, except that right there he bruiseth not the bread, but to that signification or tokening the priest inclineth it both to one side and the other. Then the priest wipeth first these three fingers on the corporal, to the intent that the more cleanly he may take the precious hostie. And after, he taketh it, looking upward on high for to render graces to God, in teaching and tokening that when we enterprise a good work for to do, we ought to lift upward to God the eyes of our heart as to him that is beginning and principal of all good works. After, he blesseth the bread, making the sign of the cross, which signifieth the blessed passion of our Lord on the holy cross.
And after, the priest saith the words that our Lord said: Take you and eat, this is mine own body, saying five words sacramental, and soon therewith is the bread converted into the proper and own body of Jesu Christ, that upon the cross died for us. After, our Lord in his supper took the wine before his disciples and yielding graces to God the Father, he blessed and gave it to his disciples saying: Take you and drink, for this is the chalice of my proper and own blood that is the confirmation both of the new and old testament and mystery of faith, which shall be spilt for you and for my people in remission of your sins. And as many times ye shall do this that I show you here, ye shall do it in the memory of me.
And therefore, in the seventh part of the canon of the mass, the priest, when he hath laid down the body of our Lord, he taketh the chalice, and after looking upward, he blesseth it, and saith: Take you and drink, for here is the chalice of mine own proper blood, and right soon after the priest hath said these foresaid words in Latin, in mind of our Lord, the wine is converted into the proper and own blood of Jesu Christ, that same ass which he spilt for us on the rood tree. And here it is to wit that in this precious sacrament we may consider nine miracles much marvellous, the which may be approved by some semblance or likeness of nature.
The first is that the substance of the bread and of the wine is changed into the substance of the body and precious blood of Christ, and this is showed to us by such a similitude or likeness naturally, that is, that of food of bread and wine, both flesh and blood are engendered in creature, much more stronger our Lord that is sovereign nature, may do by virtue of his words that the bread and the wine is converted into his own body and into his precious blood. The second miracle is, that every day, oft and many times, the bread is converted into the proper and own body of our Lord, and notwithstanding none augmentation or increase is done in God. Ensample of nature. For if I wot a thing secret, I may utter and rehearse in it many and divers places, and notwithstanding I ne wot it the more ne better than I did tofore. The third is that, every day our Lord is parted and eaten, and hath no diminishing. That is to say that God nor the sacrament is not less therefore. Reason natural. For if I have a candlelight, every one may take of the light of it without it be lessed or diminished therefore. Also, every one may take that holy sacrament without diminishing of it, but who that taketh it unworthily, he diminisheth himself. The fourth miracle is that, when the hostie is parted, God is in each part entirely. Ensample of the glass. For when the glass is parted or broken into pieces, in every part of it appeareth the figure of the thing that is presented before in it. The fifth miracle is that, if this precious sacrament be taken of an evil and sinful creature, the sacrament of itself is not fouled therefor. For we see that the beams of the sun pass through and over ordure or filth, and the sun is nothing foul therefor, but rather the ordure or filth is made clean thereof. Thus it is that, sometimes when the creature hath received the body of our Lord unworthily, considering that he hath misdone to have received his Saviour into so great ordure or filth of sin, he conceiveth by bitterness or smarting so great a coutrition that he therefore returneth to grace, and thus he is purged or made clean of his sin. The sixth miracle is, that the body of our Lord Jesu Christ is food of death to the sinners. For S. Paul the Apostle saith that, he that eateth it unworthily, he eateth it to his damnable judgment, for right even so as strong wines or strong meats are unprofitable or letting to sick people, right so is the body of our Lord Jesu Christ nuisable and letting to the sinners. The seventh miracle is, that so great a thing which all the world may not comprehend is contained in so little a hostie, for we see that a great hill may be comprised and perceived with an eye, much more stranger it is that the virtue divine may be by his puissance comprised and contained in a little hostie. The eighth miracle is, that our Lord all entirely in divers places at once is perceived of divers persons. In such manner we see and perceive that the word of a creature is known and perceived in divers places at once of many and divers creatures. The ninth miracle is, when the bread is converted into the precious body of our Lord, the accidents abide, that is to wit, whiteness, roundness, and savour, and not therefore it is no bread, but it is the body of Jesu Christ, the which is given under the likeness of bread, for this, that that might be great horror, a priest to eat raw flesh, and also to drink blood.
After this consecration these miracles are contained, and saith the priest in the eighth part of the canon an orison that beginneth thus: Unde ut memores, etc. In the which orison the priest inciteth us to have mind of the passion of our Lord Jesu Christ, of his resurrection, and of his glorious ascension, to the end that, by his passion we be incited to charity, by his holy resurrection we be incited to faith, and by his glorious ascension to hope of our health; for his passion showeth to us charity, for this, that by his charity he would suffer death for us. And therefore the priest, in that orison, he maketh five times the sign of the cross, in the memory and mind of the five wounds that our Lord received on the cross, and there that time every creature ought to set his heart to think on the passion of Christ. And thus doing, the creature shall acquire very faith by the knowledge of the holy resurrection, and very hope by his glorious ascension. After, in this same part the priest prayeth that our Lord will accept the sacrifice in such manner as he did of Abel, of Abraham, and of Melchisedech. For especially these three were accepted of God as special frrends.
After, in the ninth part of the canon of the mass, the priest inclineth him, which inclination representeth or betokeneth this, that our Lord after his supper went to the mountain of Olivet, and there he inclined himself praying to God the Father, saying: Sire, I thee pray, if it may be, that thou transfer from me this bitter chalice. And therefore he saith an orison that thus beginneth: Supplices te rogamus, in the which the priest remembereth and maketh mention of thee for the foresaid prayer, and when he cometh to say a word that is: Ex hac altaris participatione, etc., he kisseth the altar, the which kissing betokeneth this that Judas made when he betrayed his master our Lord Jesu Christ and caused him to be taken. After, in this same orison the priest maketh three times the sign of the cross, for this, that our Lord prayed in the said mountain of Olivet and sweat blood along his body, and therefore he maketh the first cross over the body of our Lord Jesu Christ, and the second cross over the blood, for the sweating of blood, and the third before his own face, for this, that our Lord praying had his face inclined, and therefore the priest maketh it before his face. This is then the end of the orison, where he prayeth that we be blessed of all blessings, and that we be replenished of all grace.
After, in the tenth part, the priest with joined hands saith: Memento etiam domine, famulorum, etc., the which memento is principally ordained for them that are passed out of this world, and for that, even there the priest resteth and hath a general memory for dead folk, and in especial for the creatures for whom he is bound or entendeth to pray for, to the end that by the misericorde of God they may have very light and very peace in the glory of paradise. After, in the eleventh part of the canon of the mass the priest beateth his breast saying: Nobis quoque peccatoribus, etc., and that signifieth the contrition and repentance that the thief that hung on the cross at the right hand of God had, when he said: Memento mei domine cum veneris in regnum tuum, that is to say: Lord I pray thee that thou be remembered of me when thou comest into thy realm. Then answered God to him: Amen dico tibi: hodie mecum eris in paradiso, that is to say: I tell thee that thou shalt this day be with me in paradise. And therefore the priest in this orison speaking for all sinners, having hope on the misericorde and mercy of God, he prayeth that we may have the perdurable or everlasting life with the company of the apostles, of martyrs, and with all the holy saints in heaven. And in this orison the priest maketh three crosses over the bread and over the wine, the which crosses betoken this, that the Jews cried three times to Pilate, speaking of the blessed Son of God: Crucify, crucify, crucify him, for he is deathworthy. And therefore maketh the priest these three first crosses, and after, he taketh the precious body of our Lord and maketh five times the sign of the cross, the three on the chalice over the blood, and the other twain betwixt the chalice and himself. The three crosses made over the chalice may signify the three principal torments or despisings that our Lord suffered in his passion. The first is, that before he was put on the cross he had much pain and suffered many spittings and many other grievous martyrdoms and torments that the proud and fell Jews did to him. The second is the despite and the torment that he for us suffered on the cross for to buy us from the pains and torments of hell, and the third is that, when he was dead on the cross Longinus thrust the spear-head into his precious side, and therefore the priest maketh the three other crosses over the precious blood. Or else it may be said that these three crosses betoken the Holy Trinity, saying: by the Father, by the Son, and by the Holy Spirit, all honour and glory. The priest maketh two crosses, and these two crosses, made betwixt the chalice and the priest may betoken the two liquors that issued out of the side of our Lord, that was blood and water, that is to wit, blood of redemption and water of regeneration.
After, the priest saith: Per omnia saecula saeculorum, and that saith he on high. That may represent or signify to us this, that our Lord crying with a high voice, rendered his soul to God the Father. Or it may be said, that the priest saith that on high to the end that the folk know the end of the canon and answer: Amen, lamenting and sorrowing the death of our Lord, to the ensample of the women that nigh the cross lamentably and piteously sorrowed and wept sore for Jesu Christ that they loved so much.
After, the priest saith: Oremus. Praecepti salutaribus moniti, etc., and here he inciteth us to honour and prayer, after the ensample of our Lord that taught his apostles, and therefore he saith: Praecepti, that is to say: we incite or admonish the commandments of salute, and in form of divine instruction, worship we and heartily pray we: saying: Pater noster, etc. And so ensueth the Pater noster, which was made and instituted by our Lord Jesu Christ, for that same he commanded his apostles to say, and therefore it is called Oratio dominica, that is to say: Orison of our Lord. And therefore veritably here oweth the creature to say devoutly this same orison: Pater noster, and howbeit that our Lord knoweth well what is best for us, and what we will have, notwithstanding he will that both with heart and mouth we pray him for many reasons. First for to incite us to devotion and for all even so as the blowing embraseth or fryeth the coal, right so the orison said with heart and mouth enflameth the devotion. Secondly, for to give good ensample to others, for our Lord saith: Luceat lux vestra coram hominibus ut videant, etc., that is to say: Let your light be shining tofore the men, so that they may perceive and see your good works, not by hypocrisy ne simuling, but by right jealousy of devotion. Thirdly for this, that all even so as we by the tongue sin, right so the devout orison ought to be made and said with tongue, to the end we may make satisfaction to the king of heaven, for the scripture saith: Sicut enim exhibuistis membra vestra servire immunditiae, et iniquitati ad iniquitatem, ita nunc exhibete membra vestra servire justitiae in sanctificationem, that is to say: As ye have given your members to felony and wickedness or corruption, ye must so obey both to justice and sanctification. Fourthly, that thing which is demanded with good heart is of light granted. Of this petition or asking here, speaketh our sweet Saviour Jesu Christ in the holy Evangile, that saith thus: Petite et dabitur vobis, etc., that is to say: My friends, ask you and ye shall have. And for this veritably every creature ought well to pray devoutly with good heart saying this devout orison: Pater noster, for the great mystery that it containeth. The mystery of this devout orison, Pater noster, is that it containeth seven petitions or askings. The first is of the eternal goods, that we may have them; and therefore saith he: Pater noster qui es in coelis, sanctificetur nomen tuum, that is as much for to say: Father that art reigning in heaven thy sweet name be blessed. The second petition is of the goods spiritual that we may receive them and therefore saith he: Adveniat regnum tuum: That is to say, May thy realm come to us, whereas we may see thee. The third petition is: Fiat voluntas tua sicut in coelo et in terra, that is to say: Over all be thy will fulfilled and done so that into heaven my soul be led. The fourth petition is: Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie, and this petition here is demanded of the name of fortune, which is a gift of the Holy Ghost. And the asking is this: Lord give us this day food, so that of thine we may have cure, that is to say that our Lord God will give us our living, so that for lack of it we leave not the service of God, whereof also we may part and deal to the poor folk, members of God. The fifth petition is: Et dimitte nobis debita rostra, sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostril; that is to say; Pardon to us our misdeeds and faults, as we forgive others the misdeeds by them done to us. The sixth petition is: Et ne nos inducas in tentationem. That is to say, And lead us not into temptation. And here is to be known that we be tempted principally of three things, the first is God, for to approve our power, secondly our flesh, for to have our appetite and lust, thirdly is the enemy for to deceive us. Of the first saith our Lord: Beatus vir qui suffest tentationem, etc., Blessed is he that suffereth temptation in the tribulation that God sendeth, for if he be approved, in heaven he shall be crowned. Of the second temptation speaketh S. James and saith: Unusquisque vero tentatur a concupiscentia sua, etc.: Every one is oft tempted for to pursue his desires. Of the third saith the Scripture: Sathanas temptavit cor tuum, etc., Satan hath made thee to fall in villainy. The seventh petition is: Sed libera nos a malo, that is as much for to say: Deliver us from all evil that letteth us for to love thee. After followeth: Amen, hoc est fiat, that is to say: The petitions before demanded be confirmed and granted. And here saith the priest: Amen, along, for this, that they that pray know not that they be heard and enhanced, whereby they leave not to pray to God. For creatures devout ought ever to to persevere in their prayers and orisons, to the end that they may have their petitions and askings, which are contained in the Pater noster as before is said.
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