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Ars Brevis: The Votive Mass of the Holy Cross (2 of 7)

Updated: Dec 1, 2023

The Ars Brevis instructs the reader to perform votive masses as part of the magical experiment(s). There are two versions of the Ars Brevis, which describe what and how the magical experiment(s) are conducted. In one version, there is an understanding that there may only be a single magical experiment which is related to a single magical figure which takes place over the course of one week. The second version indicates that there may be up to four magical experiments and that the text presents the basic template of any one of these experiments which occurs over the course of four days. The number and frequency of votive masses depends upon which version is followed. The ritual procedures of the Ars Brevis is detailed in my book, Ars Notoria: The Notory Art of Solomon (Rochester, VT: Inner Traditions, 2023).


Here I have translated the votive Mass of the Holy Cross from the 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal for those interested in experimenting with the Ars Brevis. According to one version, the votive Mass of the Holy Cross is to be offered on Monday. The Roman Missal, of course, was originally composed in Latin. Keep in mind that this is a Latin-to-English translation. Such translation work is another step away from the original biblical Hebrew and koine Greek. That is to say, this is not a Hebrew-to-English or a Greek-to-English translation. A NRSV or NRSV updated version will suffice to ensure accuracy and reliability of the following votive mass to meet modern day standards. For the general practitioner who is not concerned with the minutiae of language translation, the following English translation will suffice.


This blog entry is intended to supplement the work published in my book, and so the reader is directed to it for a proper introduction and English translation of the Ars Brevis.



Mass of the Holy Cross

Introductory Rites

Antiphon for the Entrance

But it is necessary we be glorified in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ in who is our salvation, life, and resurrection, through which we are saved and freed. Alleluia, alleluia. (Galatians 6:14)

Our God is to be merciful, and may he bless us; may he illuminate his face above us, and may he be merciful to us. (Psalms 67:1)

Versicle. Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, and now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. (The Minor Doxology)

Prayer (outside the time of Passover)

O God, you who wanted to sanctify the banner of the living Cross, your only begotten Son with [his] precious blood. We ask you allow those who rejoice at the holy Cross with honor, and also to rejoice with your protection everywhere. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in unity.

Prayer (during the time of Passover)

O God, you who wanted your Son to suffer the crossbeam of the Cross for us, like an authority, you were driving out an enemy from us. Grant us, your servants, so that we may know the grace of the resurrection. Through the Lord our Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in unity.

The Reading of the Epistle of the blessed Paul the Apostle to the Philippians

Brothers, Christ became obedient for us until death, even death on the cross. On account of that and God exalted him, and gave him a name, that is above every name (this is to be genuflected) so that at the name of Jesus every knee of the heavens, the earth, and the infernal realms must be bent, and every tongue must be confessed, because the Lord Jesus Christ is God the Father in glory. (Philippians 2:8-11)

Gradual

Christ became obedient for us until death, even death on the cross.

Versicle. On account of that and God exalted him, and gave him a name, that is above every name. Alleluia, alleluia. (Philippians 2:8-9)

Versicle. O delightful tree, delightful nails, carrying the body weight delightfully, which you alone had been worthy to hold up the King and Lord of the heavens. Alleluia.

(After Septuagesima Sunday, you omit ‘Alleluia’ and the following verse is to be said:)

Tract

O Christ, we adore you and we bless you, because through your Cross you redeemed the world.

Versicle. O Lord, we adore your Cross, we contemplate your glorious passion, you who suffered for us.

Versicle. O blessed Cross, you alone who had been worthy to bear the King and Lord of the heavens. Alleluia, alleluia.

(The gradual is to be omitted at the time of Passover, and at its place the following is to be said:)

Versicle. Say among the nations, [‘The Lord is king!’], because the Lord reigned from a tree. Alleluia. (Psalms 96:10)

Versicle. O delightful tree, delightful nails, carrying the body weight delightfully, which you alone had been worthy to hold up the King and Lord of the heavens. Alleluia.

Following the Holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matt. 20:17-19)

In that time, Jesus took twelve disciples, having confided in them, and said to them, “Behold, we ascend to Jerusalem, and the Son of man is to be handed over to the high priests and scribes, and they will condemn his to death, and they will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked, and flogged, and crucified, and on the third day he will rise again.

Liturgy of the Eucharist

Antiphon at the Offertory

O Lord, protect your people, through the sign of the holy Cross, from all plots of all enemies so that we may provide servitude for your grace, and let our sacrifice be acceptable. Alleluia.

The Secret

O Lord, we ask for this offering, may it cleanse us from all offenses, which, in the sanctuary of the Cross, even the entire world bore the offense. Through the Lord our Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in unity.

Antiphon to the Communion.

Our God, free us through the sign of the Cross from our enemies. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. (Phil. 3:18) Alleluia.

After Communion

O Lord our God, be present with us, and you cause some to rejoice with honor at the holy Cross, and also defend his perpetual support. Through the Lord our Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in unity.


The image for this blog entry is an illuminated manuscript leaf of the Crucifixion. The vellum leaf comes from a 15th-century French Book of Hours with a large miniature of the Crucifixion.


[This article is an expansion upon a passage from my Ars Notoria: The Notory Art of Solomon (Inner Traditions, 2023).]


This digital edition by Matthias Castle, Copyright 2023. All rights reserved. Please do not copy this text to your website, or for any purpose other than private use.


Ars Notoria: The Notory Art of Solomon translated by Matthias Castle, published by Inner Traditions International and Bear & Company, © 2023. All rights reserved. http://www.Innertraditions.com Reprinted with permission of publisher.

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