Well, having celebrated External Solemnities ... or do I means Sundays Within the Octaves? ... of Corpus Christi and the Sacred Heart, we have now put away our white High Mass set and got out the splendid green one which, a year or so ago, a kind benefactor procured for us from the prolific Mr Luzar. We are into the Season in Ord ... no, let us not go down that path. Neither let us call the next twenty-odd Sundays "after Pentecost", even though that was the old Anglo-Saxon custom and the habit of the Byzantines and of the Missal of S Pius V. Sundays after Trinity ... how evocative that phrase is of English summer Sundays, of the poppies red around the ripening cornfields, of the smell of baking hay, of putting ones cassock back on after a lazy and vinous afternoon and strolling back across to church to dive into a 'Sarum' surplice and flip the red silk of a MA hood over ones head and Dearly beloved brethren, the Scripture moveth us ... down to Illumina quaesumus Domine tenebras nostras ... or whatever it is that dear Dr Cranmer translated that into.
Dear Dr Cranmer also preserved to us the old Sarum custom of calling these Sundays post Trinitatem. I have always felt that 'After Pentecost' has an activism subliminally within it; as if we are thinking all the time about what the Holy Ghost is inspiring us to do next. After Trinity , however, suggests adoration. Consider the logic of the preface of the Trinity, which tradition encourages us to use on all these Sundays (composed, I think, by the Englishman Alcuin on the basis of a more prolix formula surviving in our oldest surviving insular Massbook, the Stowe Missal). What we believe of the glory of Father, Son, and Spirit is the ground for our adoration of the majesty of the undivided Godhead; a majesty which the Angels and Archangels, the Cherubim also and Seraphim praise; who cease not daily to cry out, with one voice saying Holy Holy Holy. The mystery of the true and everlasting Godhead and the distinction in persons and the unity in essence and the equality in majesty are the object of the worship which we are privileged to offer, in eternity but already here in time, with all the company of heaven.
And on Saturday evening we have prepared for Sunday in the words of the ancient Office Hymn which John Mason 'Patrimony' Neale translated as O Trinity of blessed light, O Unity of princely might, The fiery sun goes now his way; Shed thou within our hearts thy ray. To thee our morning song we praise, To thee our evening prayer we raise; Thy glory suppliant we adore For ever and for evermore. All laud to God the Father be; All praise, eternal Son, to thee; All glory, as is ever meet, To God the holy Paraclete.