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as it is to-day in the different rites. In all these, it is composed of the same parts: the readings or lessons from the Old and New Testaments, the sermon, the offertory, the preface or exhortation, the sanctus, the prayer for the living and the dead, the consecration made by the words of Christ, the adoration and breaking of the Host, the Lord's Prayer, the Communion, the blessing given by the celebrant.' There is an obvious unity underlying all the old rites that back to the earliest age,' says Dr. Adrian Fortescue; the medieval idea that all are derived from one parent rite is not so absurd.' 2

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No Liturgy was committed to writing before the fifth century-doubtless because of the Disciplina Arcani-excepting the one that is found in the so-called 'Apostolical Constitutions,' which were written not later than 390; but in his first Apology (lxv.-lxvii.) St. Justin 3 describes the Mass as it was celebrated in Rome in 150 :

After the believer is baptized, and so made one of us, we lead him to the congregation of the brethren, as we call them, and then pour out our souls with great fervour, in common prayer, both for ourselves, for the person baptized, and for all others, in every part of the world; that having embraced the truth, our lives may be as becometh the Gospel, and that we may be found doers of the word, and so at length attain eternal salvation. We salute one another with a kiss, at the end of the prayer. After this, bread and a chalice of wine and water are brought to the bishop, which he takes, and offers up praise and glory to the Father of all things, through the name of His Son and the Holy Ghost. . . . When the bishop has finished the prayers and the thanksgiving service, all the people present conclude with an audible voice, saying, Amen, which in the Hebrew language signifies, So be it. The Eucharistical office being thus performed by the bishop. : : those we call deacons distribute to every one present

this Eucharistical bread and wine. . . . This food we call the Eucharist, of which none are allowed to be partakers but such only as are true believers, and have been baptized in the laver of regeneration, for the remission of sins, and live according to Christ's precepts; for we do not take this as common bread and common drink, but as Jesus Christ our Saviour was made flesh and had real flesh and blood for our salvation, so we are taught that this food, becoming Eucharistic by the prayers and words of which He Himself is the Author, is the flesh and blood of the same incarnate Jesus. . . In every Eucharistical sacrifice we bless the Creator of all things, through His Son Jesus Christ, and through the Holy Ghost: and on the day called Sunday, all who live

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1 Dictionnaire de Théologie, vol. iv. p. 68.

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2 Fortescue, Liturgy,' Cath. Encyc., ix. p. 308.

St. Justin Martyr (b. 100, converted 130, d. 165-67) stands out as the one Father of the Church who published her teaching and practices to the unbaptized. He did so in order to free himself and the Christians of his time from the charge of impiety preferred against them. Some say, too, in the hope of converting the Emperor Antoninus Pius, to whom he dedicated his Apology.

either in the city or country meet together in the same place, where the writings of the Apostles and Prophets are read, as much as time will allow. When the reader is finished, the bishop delivers a discourse to the people. . . . At the conclusion of the discourse, we all rise up together and pray. Prayer being ended, as I have observed, there are bread and wine and water offered, and the bishop, as before, sends up prayers and thanksgivings. Then the consecrated elements are distributed to, and partaken of by, all who are present.

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From this description, especially from the last_section of it, we evolve the following order of the Holy Sacrifice in St. Justin's time :

1. Readings from the Prophets and Apostles (Epistle and Gospel).

2. Sermon by the Celebrant.

3. Prayer of the people (place of Creed).

4. Offertory-bread, wine and water.

5. Celebrant offers prayers and thanksgivings (Preface
and Canon).

6. Consecration with the words of the Institution.
7. Holy Communion.

Dr. Fortescue writes :

From about the fourth century our knowledge of the Liturgy increases enormously. . . . We have definite rites fully developed. The more or less uniform type of Litu gy used everywhere before crystallized into four rites from which all others are derived. The four are the old Liturgies of Antioch, Alexandria, Rome, and Gaul.

'Antioch first absorbed the rite of Jerusalem.' 1 The Fathers of the Second Council of Trullo, held in 692, voiced their belief that St. James of Jerusalem was the founder of that rite. Peter went from Jerusalem to Rome via Antioch. Now, it was always believed that the Roman Liturgy came from St. Peter. Such was the expressed conviction of Popes Innocent I (401-417) and Vigilius (537-555). No change was made in the Canon of the Mass from Pope Gelasius' time (492-496) till that of St. Gregory (590-604). This is certain. The latter added the words diesque nostros in tua pace disponas to the 'Hanc

1 Fortescue, in articles on the 'Liturgy' and the 'Canon,' Cath. Encyc., vols. iii. and ix.

■ 'Il fonda l'Église d'Antioche, et, au sortir de là, si nous en croyons Eusèbe, il parcourut la Cappadoce, la Bithynie, le Pont. Selon toute apparence, il arriva vers l'an 42 à Rome' (Kraus, vol. i. p. 83); and, ‘ibi viginti quinque annis Cathedram Sacerdotalem tenuit, usque ad ultimum annum Neronis (S. Jerome, Liber de Viris Illustribus, c. i.).

3 Dictionnaire de Théologie, vol. iv. p. 74.

igitur,' and placed the Pater Noster before the breaking of the Host, whereas in the other Liturgies it comes after this action. It has been said that Pope Gelasius changed the order of the Canon; but how then account for the words of Pope Vigilius, who wrote, in sending the Canon to the Spanish in 538, that it was of Apostolic tradition ? 1 Did he mean only as regards its substance, not also its form and arrangement? The Church has preserved the Canon with so much reverence and conservatism since St. Gregory's time that Pope Benedict XIV could write: No Pope has added to or changed the Canon since St. Gregory. 2 Is it to be believed that she was less reverent and less conservative of it in the years anterior to Pope Gelasius? Additions there must have been made to it (the names of the martyrs added to it is one instance), but surely they were so slight that the Canon which we say to day is the same as was said by Peter and Paul and Luke and Mark in Rome.

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The Canon that we say is always the one that remains as it was in the days of Gregory I, and that goes back far behind his time till its origin is lost in the mists that hang over the first centuries when the Roman Christians met together to do the things the Lord commanded at appointed times' (I. Člem. xl.). Through all the modifications and additions that, in recent years especially, have caused our Missal to grow in size, among all the later collects, lessons and antiphons, the Canon stands out firm and unchanging in the midst of an ever-developing rite, the centre and nucleus of the whole Liturgy, stretching back with its strange and archaic formulae through all the centuries of Church history to the days when the great Roman Caesar was lord of the world -to the days when the Holy Sacrifice was offered in the house of Prisca and Aquila in Rome.*


1 Dictionnaire de Théologie, vol. i. p. 353.

2 De SS. Missae Sacrificio.

Fortescue, 'Canon of the Mass,' Cath. Encyc., vol. iii. p. 261.

4 Romans xvi. 3-5.



It is now a little over three years since it was first announced in the Press of this country that the Irish Bishops, at their general meeting at Maynooth, had given their blessing and approval to a scheme which was laid before them of founding an Irish National Mission to China. At that time the promoters of the project were five priests in Ireland and two, in China. The first year and a half was spent in preaching throughout the country the needs of the Missions in China, and putting before the people of Ireland from the pulpit and through the press the appalling lack of priests in that vast region. In February 1918, the founders of the Mission were enabled to open the National Missionary College at St. Columban's, Dalgan Park, Galway. In April of the same year the first priests of the Mission were ordained at Maynooth College, and in June of last year St. Columban's celebrated the first Ordinations within its own walls.

Hitherto the Superiors of the Maynooth Mission to China devoted all their energies to laying the foundations of a large and widespread organization, in constructing the machinery which was to send to China year after year a band of priests trained in Ireland who would give their lives to the preaching of the Gospel to China's teeming millions. They endeavoured to carry on in favour of the pagan Missions an active and living propaganda, which would re-awaken in the breasts of the Catholic people of Ireland that fiery enthusiasm for the propagation of the Truth for which our nation has been ever remarkable. All that was necessary before the priests actually set out for China. The work before them is unspeakably great; it is immense; it requires all the forces, both spiritual and temporal, which we can throw into it; and it was of the first importance to provide

for the production of these forces before the men actually began their work.

But that period of preparation has now so far advanced that the Mission has undertaken work in the country to which they have devoted themselves. The Holy See has recently assigned the Irish Mission to China a stretch of territory to be evangelized by its members. The nature and extent, the magnitude of this territory, have been elaborately set forth in the January number of Far East by Mr. Ignatius Ying Ki, the Chinese Professor at St. Columban's College, and it will be sufficient here to touch on the more interesting features. The Irish district in China is situated in the heart of the heart of China. Its capital is the city of Hanyang, one of the famous Hankow group of cities, with a population of about 600,000. It is one of the most important cities in the whole of China, a city of which every Chinese is proud. It is situated on the Yang Tze Kiang, and is approachable by the largest ocean liners-in fact, it is part of the largest river port in the world.

The task which has been set the priests of the Irish Mission is gigantic. They have to find priests to preach the Gospel to about five millions of people; they have to divide this vast multitude into workable parishes, in which the people will be within reach of the priest; they have to build churches, chapels and schools; they have to provide for the teaching of the orphans and of the young; they have to provide higher education for the sous and daughters of the Chinese; they have to found a college for the education of native students, who will be the future priests and Bishops of China. In a word, they must build up and set working in their own vast territory a healthy, vigorous Chinese Church. It will be obvious that such a task requires all the aid that we, the Catholic Irish nation, can give. It will require vast sums of money, it will require large numbers of priests, the best we can give-priests of sanctity, of strength, of initiative and intellectual power.

True, next March sixteen of the Maynooth Missionaries will leave our shores to pitch the camp which the future legions will occupy; true, that this is an exceptionally large number of Missionaries to be sent out by any Missionary body; but it seems almost pathetic when one remembers the numbers which will be needed to make the work anything like complete. But now that Ireland has already shown her determination to stand by her children who

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