03 September 2009

Commemoration of St. Gregory the Great

From the Treasury and our Synod's website:

One of the great leaders in Europe at the close of the sixth century, Gregory served in both the secular and sacred arenas of his era. As mayor of Rome, he restored economic vitality to his native city, which had been weakened by enemy invasions, pillage, and plague. After he sold his extensive properties and donated the proceeds to help the poor, he entered into full-time service in the Church. On September 3, 590 A.D., Gregory was elected to lead the church in Rome. As Bishop of Rome he oversaw changes and growth in the areas of church music and liturgical development, missionary outreach to northern Europe, and the establishment of a church-year calendar still used by many churches in the western World today. His book on pastoral care became a standard until the 20th century.

In the collect today we pray: "...You raised up Gregory of Rome to be a pastor to those who shepherd God's flock and inspired him to send missionaries to preach the Gospel to the English people. Preserve in Your Church the catholic and apostolic faith that Your people may continue to be fruitful in every good work and receive the crown of glory that does not fade away..." (Treasury, p. 687)

10 comments:

Past Elder said...

Well PW, here's another one. This ain't his feast day, except since 1969 to the Roman church and those lining up like ducks behind it.

It's 12 March. Against the universal practice both East and West of the church he served, the retching rag dog revisionists of Vatican II moved his feast from the day he died to the day he was installed, to use the new word, as Pope. Reason being apparently, he inconveniently died on a day which will always fall in Lent when there are no obligatory memorials. How sad for him to have served so well then screwed up right at the end, although, it didn't seem to be an issue for centuries until the liturgical Woodstock of the 1960s.

However -- heads up EO, olive branch coming -- despite whatever I have and likely will say about the EO, to their eternal credit they remain in this and in all other matters unscarred by the ecclesiastical Goths who sacked Rome as effectively as the historical Goths prior to Gregory, hell I'll go for it, Gregory the Diologist's, birth, and it remains 12 March in the East.

As it should everywhere.

Let it also be noted that Gregory was the first monkish pope, but then again that's not a Benedictine thing but a family thing, as the monastery, St Andrew's, was founded by Gregory himself, after his dad died, in their family villa suburbana located on the Mons Caelius, a wealthy neighbourhood right across from the Mons Palatinus, where Romulus and Remus were cared for in the she-wolf's cave (the Lupercal) in the beginning and the palaces of the Roman emperors stood in the end, in ruins in Gregory's youth.

So he was a self made monk, monking himself over, and the joint is still there, passing to the Camaldolese, Benedictines but with a hermit thing, which ain't really the Benedictine way of monking out, but they're in the Benedictine Confederation so they're OK, in 1573, who built the present structure there, San Gregorio Magno al Cielo.

And you thought it was tough keeping all these Lutheran synods straight!

It should also be noted that when Gregory became Bishop of Rome the office was nothing like it either would become or is now. The French bishops came from the wealthy landowning families, the Spanish bishops hardly had any contact with Rome, and as to evangelising us English, we already were by the Celtic Christians who also took it to Germany.

christl242 said...

and as to evangelising us English, we already were by the Celtic Christians who also took it to Germany.

Yepper!!

Christine

Past Elder said...

I should have said took it to the Germans still in Germany who hadn't moved to England. That's why they could do it, "English" and "German" being not all that different in those days so my man Winifrid, good English Benedictine that he was, better known by the Englished form of his Latin name, Boniface.

And God bless me sideways if we aren't discussing the mighty feller of Thor's Sacred Oak on what we STILL call Thor's Day -- Thursday.

They got Romed over though, Benedict's bishopric getting subsumed into Mainz's which in turn became one of the seven Kurfuersten, prince-electors, of the Holy Roman Emperor!

Oh and sorry about the Pfalzgraf bei Rhein thing, Christine, but at least when the Duke of Bavaria was held by a different Wittelsbach than the Count Palatine and lost out, you have the consolation of knowing it was Wittelsbach money that established die Abtei here in which I was monked around!

Pr. Thomas E. Fast said...

Question, Pr. Weedon: How familiar are you with the manual on pastoral care? I assume it is well worth a careful reading. Are you familiar enough to prefer a particular translation or version?

Thanks.

Pr. Tom Fast

christl242 said...

Winifrid, good English Benedictine that he was, better known by the Englished form of his Latin name, Boniface.

Ja!! Der heilige Bonifatius!

but at least when the Duke of Bavaria was held by a different Wittelsbach than the Count Palatine and lost out, you have the consolation of knowing it was Wittelsbach money that established die Abtei here in which I was monked around!

Die beliebte Abtei! I am honored!

Christine

christl242 said...

Winifrid, good English Benedictine that he was, better known by the Englished form of his Latin name, Boniface.

Ja!! Der heilige Bonifatius!

but at least when the Duke of Bavaria was held by a different Wittelsbach than the Count Palatine and lost out, you have the consolation of knowing it was Wittelsbach money that established die Abtei here in which I was monked around!

Die beliebte Abtei! I am honored!

Christine

William Weedon said...

It's online:

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/3601.htm

Be prepared to feel like a total worm... Gregory has a way of using the law very well.

Chris said...

I have a special place for Gregory the Great, the Dialogist, Pope of Rome in my prayers. I love his Presanctified Liturgy which we pray during the weekdays of Lent. A true gem.

He was also a great Latinist which makes him even better.

Past Elder said...

That's the Barmby translation, Pastor Fast, edited over a couple of times. You may also, in our media age, have it as an audio book here:

http://www.archive.org/details/PastoralCare

And another olive branch to the EO -- also to their eternal credit is the preservation of the Western Rite as evidenced by Gregory apart from the hack job of the novus ordo missae in what appears to be something of an emerging (but not emergent, if you know what I mean!) "Western Orthodoxy" as the Gregorian Rite.

Pr. Thomas E. Fast said...

Thanks guys. Perhaps it will double as preparation for private confession. :-)