Video: Canticle of the Passion

Photo: Dominican Nun venerates the Crucifix

The Canticle of the Passion, or the “Passion Verses” as we say, is a specifically Dominican devotion traditionally sung on the Fridays of Lent.  A compilation of texts from Sacred Scripture relating to the sufferings of Our Lord Jesus Christ, this devotion was revealed by the Blessed Virgin Mary to St. Catherine de Ricci, a cloistered Dominican Tertiary of the 16th century, after the Saint experienced the first of her many ecstasies sharing Our Lord’s Passion. “Our Lady is said to have desired Catherine, when she revealed this Canticle to her, to spread it through the convent as a form of prayer and contemplation supremely pleasing to our Lord. The venerable confessor, Fra … Continue reading

Sounds of the Ascension at Marbury

This year as we practiced the chants for the feast of the Ascension, a friend urged us to share the beauty of the chant.  Although we sing more than one of the chants for the Ascension, we only present one here: Viri Galilaei, the Offertorium (offertory chant) from the Dominican Graduale for the feast of the Ascension.  Other chants for the Ascension are the Officium (called the Introit in the Roman Rite) at the beginning of Mass, two Alleluias with accompanying verses, and the Communion antiphon. This is just a sample of what Mass sounds like here at Marbury, and of the kind of music the girls will hear on … Continue reading

Collection of Lenten Posts

St. Dominic adoring the Crucified Christ by Fra Angelico - detail of larger painting

As we are about to begin this holy season, here are some of our posts from past years concerning Lenten prayers, practices, and devotions.  During Lent we intensify the work of conversion, metanoia, turning from self to God, which is common to all the seasons of our monastic life.  We pray that you receive special Lenten graces during this Year of Mercy. • Parce Days: Making Reparation — on the three days before Lent The three days leading up to Ash Wednesday we call the “Parce Days” (pronounced PAR-chay, for those unfamiliar with ecclesiastical Latin). These are days are observed as days of special penance in reparation for the excesses … Continue reading

Vocation Letters: Living the Liturgical Year

Cartoon of Dominican Nuns holding letters ALLELUIA

This entry continues our series of “Vocation Letters” concerning our fictional postulant, Sister Melanie.  Here she tells her family how nuns live the liturgical year.  Sister Mary Magistra is our fictional Novice Mistress/Vocations Directress—”Magistra” means “lady teacher” in Latin. Ave + Maria Dear Mom, Dad, Josh, Zach, and Tessa, Joyful Eastertide greetings!  Christ is risen—indeed He is risen!  I hope you all had a wonderful Easter.  I was so thrilled to see all your letters in the bundle of mail Mother had saved up during Lent to give us at Easter. When I first was getting to know the Sisters, one of the older Sisters mentioned how intense the experience … Continue reading

Advent Waiting

As our Holy Father explained in his letter for Advent, this is a season for waiting. But not just any kind of waiting. Blessed Columba Marmion takes up this same theme of waiting in his treatment of Advent. First he asks, “Why did God chose to delay the coming of His Son amongst us for so many centuries?” Although God is inscrutable in Himself, yet at the same time He wants us to ask just such questions and then seek for the answer. First of all, Dom Marmion says, based on St. Thomas, that it was fitting that men, having sinned through pride, should be obliged by the prolonged experience … Continue reading