In Franciscan communities, such as the one at Franciscan University of Steubenville, there is an added part after the 2nd reading and before the alleluia and gospel. Does anyone know what this part is called and where I can find the words for it?
P.S. It would probably be part of the Franciscan supplement to the liturgy and yes it is liturgically correct.
Nathan, our cathedral is run by Franciscans. I was the reader at this morning’s Mass. I read from Sirach, then the responsorial psalm, then from Galatians (all different from the daily Roman lectionary readings and also different from the feast/memorial readings in the standard weekday lectionary).
The next section, after the second reading, was labeled “the sequence,” and I was directed not to read that this morning. After that was the Gospel. We have a special Mass tonight for the feast day, celebrated by our Bishop for our Fransciscans, and maybe the sequence will be read there. It looks quite beautiful.
It is in the Franciscan lectionary–that is the label on the spine of the book from which we read for Franciscan feasts, memorials, etc. At least I’m pretty sure that’s what the spine says.
Where to find it? In the sacristy of a church, chapel, or cathedral run by Franciscans, of course! I can’t find it online. It’s an old looking book, so that doesn’t surprise.
It’s a ‘sequence’ in honor of St. Francis that’s quite old-I think it was written just after his death.
Perhaps our friend JR can let us in on it?
I used to be in the Third Order Franciscans (called nowadays the Secular Franciscan Order) and it was in the prayer book ‘Tertiary’s Companion’. (if you’re reading this JR, yes I know that SFO members are not called ‘Tertiaries’ anymore; but that was what they were called back in the late 70s / early 80s when I was in it)
It is the following Sequence and can be foudn in the Franciscan Lectionery
Lo, new signs of sanctity,
Deserving praise in high degree,
Wonderful and fair to see,
In Francis now behold!
To the newly gathered band
Francis gives the King’s command,
And guided by his mighty hand,
The New Law does unfold.
Before the world’s astonished view
Arise the life and Order new
Whose holy rules again renew
The evangelic state.
Francis to Christ’s law conforms,
The life monastic he reforms
And all the apostolic norms
he keeps inviolate.
Scant the measure of his food;
Scant his raiment, coarse and rude;
A cord his girdle plain and rude;
he goes with feet unshod.
For naught but poverty he yearns;
From money he in loathing turns;
All earthly things now Francis spurns,
Despising all for God.
He seeks a place to weep apart,
And mourns in bitterness of heart
The time he lost while taking part
In earthly things so vain.
Within a mountain cavern lone
He hides to weep, and lying prone,
Prays aloud with sign and groan;
Then peace returns again.
There in that rocky cave’s retreat,
Enrapt in contemplation sweet,
The wise judge spurns the earth beneath,
To heaven he aspires.
His flesh by penance is subdued,
Transfigured wholly and renewed;
The scriptures are his daily food;
He scorns all base desires.
Then like a seraph from the height
Of heaven, comes the King of might;
The patriarch, in deep affright,
Beholds the vision dread.
It bears the marks of Christ, and lo!
While Francis stands in speechless woe
It pierces him, and blood does flow
From out the wounds so red.
His body, like Christ’s crucified,
Is signed on hands and feet.
His side,pierced through and through, is slowly dyed
In crimson streams of blood.
Prophetic secrets now are heard:
Great wisdom has the Lord conferred
Upon the saint; the mystic word
His soul with light does flood.
Now in those bleeding wounds, behold!
Black nails appear, cause pain untold.
Sharp are the points, and manifold
The anguish and the woe.
No human instrument did aught
To make those wounds; they were not brought
To him by nature’s hand, nor wrought
By cruel hammer-blow.
We pray you, by the cross’s sign
Marked on your flesh, whereby ‘twas yours
The world, the flesh, all things malign,
To conquer gloriously:
O Francis, take us to your care,
Protect us here from every snare,
That we your great reward may share
In heaven eternally.
O holy Francis, Father sweet,
Devoutly we your aid entreat.
May we and all your children meet,
Crowned victors in the strife.
In virtue’s path our footsteps train
And guide us where the saints now reign,
that we, your children, may attain
The joys of endless life.