THE HOLY APOSTLES PETER AND PAUL.

117. VISIT TO THEIR CHURCHES ON THEIR FEAST AND ITS OCTAVE.

If the solemn festival of the holy Apostles Peter and Paul ought to be celebrated with feelings of gratitude and veneration throughout the whole Catholic world, as the first preachers of the faith of Jesus Christ and of the holy Gospel, much more ought it to be so celebrated in this our city of Rome; for it was Rome, which, being first enlightened by the heavenly teaching of these Apostles, became, from a disciple of error, Mistress of the Truth; and it was this city of Rome that these Apostles consecrated with their blood. The more, then, to augment the gratitude and devotion of the people of Rome towards these holy Apostles, and the more always to implore their efficacious protection with God, Pope Benedict XIV., in his Constitution Admirabiles of April 1, 1743, granted –
i. An indulgence of 100 days, to all the faithful who, being truly penitent and having confessed, shall visit the under mentioned churches on their festival and during its octave.
ii. An indulgence of seven years and seven quarantines, to those who shall make this visit processionally, with their respective Archconfraternity or Confraternity.

CHURCHES TO BE VISITED.

June 29, St. Peter in Vaticano; where lies the body of the Apostle St. Peter. These is also a Plenary indulgence to be obtained by those who make this visit after Confession and Communion. See Note.
June 30, St. Paul outside the walls; where rests his holy body.
July 1, St. Pudenziana; once the house of St. Pudens, Roman senator, where St. Peter lodged the first time he came to Rome.
July 2, St. Mary in Via Lata; in the crypt of which church St. Paul was imprisoned.
July 3, St. Peter in Vinculis; where are venerated the chains of St. Peter.
July 4, St. Peter in Carcere; where St. Peter and St. Paul were kept in prison.
July 5, St. Peter in Montorio; in which place this Apostle was crucified with his head downwards.
July 6, St. John in Laterano; where are venerated the sacred heads of the two great Apostles.

NOTE.- Pope Urban VIII., in his Constitution Inter primarias, Nov. 15, 1630 (Bullar. Basil. Vatic., tom. iii. p. 242, edit. Rom. 1752), granted to all faithful Christians who, devoutly visiting the sacred Confession of St. Peter the Apostle in the Vatican Basilica, shall say the prayer, “Ante oculos tuos, Domine,” &c., or who, not being able to do so from not knowing how to read, shall say twelve Pater noster’s and twelve Ave Maria’s to implore the divine mercy –
i. A plenary indulgence, after Confession and Communion, on all the following festivals, viz.
The Most Holy Trinity.
All the Feasts of our Lord Jesus Christ and of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
The Feast of St. John Baptist
The Feast of the holy Apostles SS. Peter and Paul, and the Feasts of all the other holy Apostles.
The Feast of All Saints.
All the Fridays in March.
ii. An indulgence of seven years and seven quarantines, on all other days, to those who have a firm purpose of confessing.
To this Prayer, composed by St. Augustine in a time of grievous public calamity, the same Pope Urban VIII. added the versicles, &c., recommending then to be inserted at the end of all Roman breviaries. The prayer hangs on a board by the side of the altar of the said Confession.

THE PRAYER, EXTRACTED FROM THE ROMAN BREVIARY.

(As this prayer is little known, it is here given at length in Latin and English, though only referred to in the Roman Raccolta.)

Ante oculos tuos, Domine, culpas nostras ferimus; et plagas quas accepimus, conferimus.
Si pensamus malum quod fecimus, minus est quod patimur, majus est quod meremur.
Gravius est quod commisimus, levius est quod toleramus.
Peccati poenam sentimus, et peccandi pertinaciam non vitamus.
In flagellis tuis infirmitas nostra teritur, et iniquitas non mutatur.
Mens aegra torquetur, et cervix non flectitur.
Vita in dolore suspirat, et in opere non se emendat.
Si expectas, non corrigimur; si vindicas, non duramus.
Confitemur in correctione quod egimus; obliviscimur post visitationem quod flevimus.
Si extenderis manum, facienda promittimus; si suspenderis gladium, promissa non solvimus.
Si ferias, clamamus ut parras; si peperceris, iterum provocamus ut ferias.
Habes, Domine, confitentes reos; novimus quod nisi dimittas, recte nos perimus.
Praesta, Pater omnipotens, sine merito quod rogamus, qui fecisti ex nihilo qui te rogarent. Per Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.

V. Gregem tuam, Pastor aeterne, non deseras.
R. Sed inter beatos Apostolos tuos perpetua defensione custodias.
V. Protege, Domine, populum tuum ad te clainantem, et Apostolorum tuorum patrocinio confidentem.
R. Perpetua defensione custodias.
V. Orate pro nobis, sancti Apostoli Dei.
R. Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

ORATIO.

Praesta, quaesumus, omnipotens Deus, ut nullis nos permittas perturbationis concuti, quos in Apostolicae confessionis petra solidasti. Per Dominum. R. Amen.

Imploret, clementissime Domine, nostris opportunam necessitatibus opem devote a nobis prolata meditatio, qua sanctus olim Joannes Chrysostomus, in hac basilica conditus, te cum beatissimis Apostolis Petro et Paulo repraesentavit sic colloquentem: “Circumdate hanc novam Sion et cirumvallate eam: hoc est, custodite, munite, precibus firmante; ut quando irascor in tempore, et orbem terrae concutio, aspiciens sepulcrum vestrum numquam desiturum, et quae libenter propter me geritis stigmata, iram misericordia vincam, et ob hanc te percipiam vestram intercessionem. Etenim quando Sacerdotium et Regnum video lacryimari, statim quasi compatiens ad commiserationem flector, et illius meae vocis remniscor: ‘Protegam urbem hanc propter David servum tuum et Aaron sanctum tuum.'” Domine, fiat, fiat. Amen, Amen.

TRANSLATION

Lord, before Thine eyes we bring our sins, and with them we compare the stripes which we have received.
When we think of the evil we have done, little is that which we suffer, great that which we deserve.
Heaviest are our offences, lightest our burden.
We are afflicted by the punishment of our sin, yet we avoid not the obstinate desire of sinning.
The weakness of our flesh faints under Thy scourges, yet is not our iniquity changed.
The sick soul is sore tormented, yet is not the neck bent.
In pain our life sighs heavily; yet are its deeds in no wise amended.
If Thou waitest for us, we are not corrected; if Thou takest vengeance, we bear it not.
When we are corrected, we confess our shortcomings; after Thou hast visited us, we forget that which we bewailed.
If Thou stretchest forth Thy hand, we promise what we will do; if Thou delayest to draw Thy sword, we perform not our promises.
If Thou strikest us, we cry unto Thee to spare; if Thou sparest, we provoke Thee again to strike.
Lord, hear the confession of Thy guilty people; for we know well that unless Thou shouldest pardon, Thou dost righteously consume us.
Almighty Father, grant us that which though we pray we do not deserve to obtain; Thou who didst create men of nothing, that they might pray to Thee. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

V. Eternal Shepherd, desert not Thy flock.
R. But by thy blessed Apostles guard and defend it evermore.
V. Protect, O Lord, Thy people, who cry unto Thee, trusting in the patronage of Thy Apostles.
R. Yea, guard them with an everlasting defence.
V. Pray for us, O holy Apostles of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.
O Almighty God, we beseech Thee, suffer us not, whom Thou hast firmly founded upon the rock of the apostolical confession, ever to be shaken by any storms of the enemy. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

O most merciful God, let us obtain timely help in our necessity, whilst we devoutly proffer to Thee the meditation which blessed John Chrysostom, who lies buried in this basilica, has represented Thee thus addressing Thy most holy Apostles Peter and Paul: “Surround this new city of Zion, and compass it about; guard it, fortify it, establish it with your prayers; that when, in time to come, My wrath is kindled within Me, and I begin to shake terribly the earth, I may look on the place where your bodies are lying, and beholding the wounds which ye willingly bear in them for My sake, I may overcome anger with mercy, and so accept your intercession. For indeed, when I behold the tears of the Kingdom and of the Priesthood, straightway My heart is moved to compassion, and I call to mind the words of my mouth: ‘I will protect this city for the sake of David My servant, and Aaron My holy one.’” Amen, O Lord, and Amen.


118. PRAYER, “O BLESSED APOSTLES,” WITH A PATER NOSTER, AVE MARIA, AND GLORIA PATRI.

Pope Pius VI., by a Rescript of July 28, 1778, issued through the Segretaria of the memorials, granted –
i. An indulgence of 100 days to all the faithful who, being contrite, shall say at least once a day the following prayer, with one Pater, Ave, and Gloria, in honour of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul.
ii. A plenary indulgence, on all Feasts of SS. Peter and Paul, provided that, after Confession and Communion, they shall on such feast-day itself, or one of the nine days preceding it, or eight days following it, visit a church or altar dedicated to those Saints, saying there the following prayer, and remembering the Holy Church and its Sovereign Pontiff.

THE PRAYER

O blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, I, NN., elect you this day for my special protectors and advocates with God.  In all humility I rejoice with thee, blessed Peter, Prince of the Apostles, because thou art the rock whereon God hath built his Church; and I rejoice with thee too, blessed Paul, because thou wast chosen of God for a Vessel of election, and a preacher of the truth throughout the world.  Obtain for me, I beseech you both, a lively faith, firm hope, and perfect charity, entire detachment from myself, contempt of the world, patience in adversity, humility in prosperity, attention in prayer, purity of heart, right intention in my works, diligence in the fulfilment of all the duties of my state of life, constancy in my good resolutions, resignation to the holy will of God, perseverance in Divine grace unto death; that, having overcome by your joint intercession and your glorious merits, the temptations of the world, the flesh, and the devil, I may be made worthy to appear before the face of the chief and eternal Bishop of Souls, Jesus Christ our Lord, to enjoy Him and to love Him for all eternity, who with the Father and the Holy Ghost liveth and reigneth ever world without end. Amen.

Pater, Ave, and Gloria


119. RESPONSORIUM: “SI VIS PATRONUM.”

Pius VI., in order to increase the devotion of the faithful to Peter, Prince of the Apostles, granted my a Rescript of the S. Congr. of Indulgences, Jan. 19. 1782 –
i. An indulgence of 100 days to all who shall devoutly say daily the following Responsorium.
in. A plenary indulgence, on the Feast of St. Peter’s Chair in Rome, Jan. 18, and also on the Feast of St. Peter’s Chains, August 1; provided that on those days, being truly penitent, after Confession and Communion, they visit a church or altar dedicated to St. Peter, and pray according to the intention of the Sovereign Pontiff.

THE RESPONSORIUM.

Si vis patronum quaerere,
Si vis potentem vindicem,
Quid jam moraris? invoca
Apostolorum Principem.

O sancte coeli Claviger,
Tu nos precando subleva;
Tu redde novis pervia
Aulae supernae limina.

Ut ipse multis poenitens
Culpam rigasti lacrymis,
Sic nostra tolli poscimus
Fletu perenni crimina.

O sancte coeli.&c.

Sicut fuisti ab angelo
Tuis solutus vinculis,
Tu nos iniquis exue
Tot implicatos nexibus.

O sancte coeli. &c.

O firma Petra Ecclesiae,
Columna flecti nescia,
Da robur et constantiam,
Error fidem ne subruat.

O sancte coeli. &c.

Romam tuo qui sanguine
Olim sacrasti, protege;
In teque confidentibus
Praesta salutem gentibus.

O sancte coeli. &c.

Tu rem tuere publicam,
Qui te colunt, fidelium,
Ne laesa sit contagiis,
Ne scissa sit discordiis.

O sancte coeli. &c.

Quos hostis antiquus dolos
Instruxit in nos, destrue;
Truces et iras comprime,
Ne clade nostra saeviat.

O sancte coeli. &c.

Contra furentis impetus
In morte vires suffice,
Ut et supremo vincere
Possimus in certamine.

O sancte coeli. &c.

Gloria Patri, &c.

O sancte coeli. &c.

Ant. Tu es Pastor ovium, Princeps Apostolorum tibi traditae sunt claves regni coelorum.

V. Tu es Petrus.
R. Et super hanc petram aedificabo ecclesiam meam.

Oremus.
Apostolicis nos, Domine quaesumus, beati Petri Apostoli tui attolle praesidiis: ut quanto fragiliores sumus, tanto ejus intercessione validioribus auxiliis foveamur; et jugiter apostolica defensione muniti, nec succumbamus vitiis, nec opprimamur adversis. Per Christum, &c.

THE RESPONSORY OF ST. PETER.

Seek ye a patron to defend –
Your cause? – then, one and all,
Without delay upon the Prince
Of the Apostles call.

Blest holder of the heavenly keys,
Thy prayers we all implore
Unlock to us the sacred bars
Of heaven’s eternal door.

By penitential tears thou didst
The path of life regain;
Teach us with thee to weep our sins,
And wash away their stain.

Blest holder, &c.

The angel touch’d thee, and forthwith
Thy chains from off thee fell;
O, loose us from the subtle coils
That bind us fast to hell.

Blest holder, &c.

Firm rock whereon the Church is based,
Pillar that cannot bend,
With strength endue us; and the faith
From heresy defend.

Blest holder, &c.

Save Rome, which from the days of old
Thy blood hath sanctified;
And help the nations of the earth
That in thy help confide.

Blest holder, &c.

O, worshipped by all Christendom,
Her realms in peace maintain;
Let no contagion sap her strength,
No discord rend in twain.

Blest holder, &c.

The weapons which our ancient foe
Against us doth prepare,
Crush thou; nor suffer us to fall
Into his deadly snare.

Blest holder, &c.

Grant us through life; and in that hour
When our last fight draws nigh,
O’er death, o’er hell, o’er Satan’s power,
Gain us the victory.

Blest holder, &c.

All glory to the Father be;
Praise to the Son sin who rose;
Praise to the Spirit Paraclete;
While age on ages flows.

Blest holder, &c.

Glory be to the Father, &c.

Blest holder, &c.

Ant. Thou art the shepherd of the sheep, Prince of the Apostles; to thee were given the keys of the kingdom of heaven.

V. Thou art Peter.
R. And upon this rock will I build My Church.

Let us pray.
O Lord, we beseech Thee, raise us up by the Apostolic might of Blessed Peter Thine Apostle; that the weaker we are in ourselves, the more powerful may be the assistance whereby we are strengthened through his intercession; that thus, ever fortified by the protection of Thine Apostle, we may neither yield to sin, nor be overwhelmed by adversity. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


120. THE RESPONSORIUM: “PRESSI MALORUM,” ETC.

Pope Pius VII., through his Eminence the Cardinal Vicar, by a Rescript of Jan. 23, 1806, kept in the Archivium of the Pious Union of St. Paul aforementioned, granted, in order to increase in all the faithful devotion towards the blessed Apostle Paul, Vessel of Election and Doctor of the Gentiles –
i. An indulgence of 100 days to all those who shall devoutly say daily the following Responsorium.
ii. A plenary indulgence on the 25th of January, the Feast of the Conversion of the Apostle, and on June the 30th, the Feast of his Commemoration, to all who on those days, being truly penitent, shall, after Confession and Communion, visit some church or altar dedicated to the Apostle, and pray according to the intention of the Sovereign Pontiff.

DICTUM RESPONSORIUM.

Pressi malorum pondere
Adite Paulum supplices,
Qui certa largus desuper
Dabit salutis pignora.

O grata coelo Victima,
Doctorque, amorque gentium,
O Paule, nos te vindicem,
Nos te patronum poscimus.

Nam tu beato concitus
Divini amoris impetu,
Quos insecutor oderas,
Defensor inde amplcteris.

O grata. &c.

Non te procellae, et verbera,
Non vincla, et ardor hostium,
Non dira mors deterruit,
Ne sancto adesses coetui.

O grata. &c.

Amoris eja pristini
Ne sis, precamur, immemor,
Et nos supernae languidos
In spem reducas gratiae.

O grata.

Te destruantur auspice
Saevae inferorum machinae,
Et nostra templa publicis
Petita votis insonent.

O grata. &c.

Te deprecante floreat
Ignara damni charitas,
Quam nulla turbent jurgia,
Nec ullus error sauciet.

O grata. &c.

Qua terra cumque diditur,
Jungatur uno foedere,
Tuisque semper afflat
Salubre nectar litteris.

O grata. &c.

Det velle nos quod imperat,
Det posse Summus Arbiter,
Ne fluctuantes horridae
Caligo noctis obruat.

O grata. &c.

Gloria Patri, &c.

O grata. &c.

Ant. Vas electionis est mihi iste, ut portet nomen meum coram gentibus, et regibus, et filiis Israel.

V. Ora pro nobis S. Paule Apostole.
R. Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

Oremus.
Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui beato Apostolo tuo Paulo, quid faceret ut impleretur Spiritu Sancto, divina miseratione praecepisti: ejus dirigentibus monitis, et suffragantibus meritis concede, ut servientes tibi in timore, et tremore coelestium donorum consolatione repleamur. Per Christum Dominum nostrum. R. Amen.

THE RESPONSORY OF ST. PAUL.

All ye who groan beneath
A load of ills oppress’d,
Entreat St. Paul, and he will pray
The Lord to give you rest.

O victim, dear to Heaven
O Paul, thou teacher true
Thou love and joy of Christendom,
To thee for help we sue.

Pierced by the flame of love,
Descending from on high
Twas thine to preach the faith which once
Thou soughtest to destroy.

O victim, &c.

Nor toil, nor threaten’d death,
Nor tempest, scourge, or chain,
Could from th’ assembly of the saints
Thy loving heart detain.

O victim, &c.

O, by that quenchless love
Which burnt in thee of yore,
Take pity on our miseries,
Our fainting hope restore.

O victim, &c.

True champion of the Lord,
Crush thou the schemes of hell;
And with adoring multitudes
The sacred temples fill.

O victim, &c.

Through thy prevailing prayer,
May charity abound
Sweet charity, which knows no ill,
Which nothing can confound.

O victim, &c.

To earth’s remotest shores
May one same faith extend;
And thy epistles through all climes
Their blessed perfume send.

O victim, &c.

Grant us the will and power
To serve Thee, God of might;
Lest, wav’ring still and unprepar’d,
We sink in depths of night.

O victim, &c.

Praise to the Father be;
Praise to the Son who rose
Praise to the Spirit Paraclete;
While age on ages flows.

O victim, &c.

Glory be to the Father, &c.

O victim, &c.

Ant. This is My vessel of election, to carry My Name among the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel.

V. Pray for us, O blessed Apostle Paul.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.
Almighty and Eternal God, who in Thy divine compassion didst direct Thy blessed Apostle Paul what to do that He might be filled with Thy Holy Spirit; grant that we may be so counselled by his teaching, and aided by the suffrage of his merits, that, serving Thee in fear and trembling, we may be filled with the consolation of Thy heavenly gifts. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


APPENDIX

184. THREE “ PATERS” ETC. BEFORE HIS TOMB.

By a Brief of May 15, 1857, the Sovereign Pontiff Pius IX. granted –
The indulgence of seven years and seven quarantines to all the faithful who, with contrite heart and devotion, shall say three Paters, three Aves, and three Glorias before the tomb of St. Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, in the Vatican Basilica, to render thanks to God for the favours granted to this holy Apostle.
Moreover, to any one who shall, with contrite heart and devotion, kiss the foot of the bronze statue of this Apostle in the aforesaid Basilica he granted –
50 days indulgence, provided he prays at the same time for peace among Christian princes, for the extirpation of heresy, and for the exaltation of our Holy Mother the Church.

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