Hosannas hooked on the horns of dilemma

The VerbumQUO for today is "ramos" which is the Latin plural noun for "branches", taken from several of the passages for today's ceremonies for Palm Sunday; for it was the branches of palms and olive that are symbolic of this day and divide the Old and the New, with the former fulfilled in all that would unfold in this coming Holy Week, as the new branches would sprout more buds and fruit, and the old, and insincere, wither away.
Michael Cain
Editor, The Daily Catholic

      Editor's Note: This series the editor highlights one word from the Proper of the day's Mass. Taking the Latin Verbum and Quotidianum, which mean respectively "Word" and "Daily", we have coined the word "Verbumquo" by contracting quotidianum to quo and running it together as VerbumQUO for this feature series, thus "The Daily Word," as in the sum of the message, the 'quotient', if you will. It is also our hope that in choosing the Latin word with its meaning and etymology more will be attuned to hearing the word read at the altar and better comprehend the beauty of the Mother tongue. Hopefully in this Time of Passiontide we can gain a higher appreciation and contemplation on how the Daily Proper of the Holy Mass applies in our lives in alignment with the will of Christ and His Blessed Immaculate Mother and His Mystical Bride, His Holy Roman Catholic Church.

    The VerbumQUO for today's Proper of Palm Sunday is "ramos", the Latin noun for "branches" and is taken from today's ceremonies in the Blessing of the Palms, the Procession of the Palms. This is first heard in the Gospel of St. Matthew 21: 1-9:

      In illo tempore: Cum approprinquasset Iesus Ierosolymis, et venisset Bethphage ad montem Oliveti: tunc misit duos discipulos suos, dicens eis: "Ite in castellum, quod contra vos est, et statim invenietis asinam alligatam, et pullum cum ea: solvite, et adducite mihi: et si quis vobis aliquid dixerit, dicite, quia Dominus his opus habet, et confestim dimittet eos. Hoc autem totum factum est, ut adimpleretur quod dictum est per Prophetam, dicentem: Dicite filiae Sion: Ecce Rex tuus venit tibi mansuetus, sedens super asinam, et pullum filium subiugalis." Euntes autem discipuli, fecerunt sicut praecepit illis Iesus. Et adduxerunt asinam, et pullum: et imposuerunt super eos vestimenta sua, et eum desuper sedere fecerunt. Plurima autem turba straverunt vestimenta sua in via: alii autem caedebant ramos de arboribus, et sternebant in via: turbae autem, quae praecedebant, et quae sequebantur, clamabant, dicentes: Hosanna filio David: benedictus, qui venit in nomine Domini.
      At that time, when Jesus drew nigh to Jerusalem, and was come to Bethphage, unto Mount Olivet, then He sent two disciples, saying to them: "Go ye into the village that is over against you, and immediately you shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her; loose them and bring them to Me; and if any man shall say anything to you, say ye that the Lord hath need of them; and forthwith he will let them go." Now all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying: Tell ye the daughter of Sion: Behold thy King cometh to thee meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of her that is used to the yoke. And the disciples going did as Jesus commanded them. And they brought the ass and the colt, and laid their garments upon them, and made Him sit thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way, and others cut branches from the trees, and strewed them in the way, and the multitudes that went before and that followed cried, saying: Hosanna to the Son of David; Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord.

    This is repeated in four out of six Oremus Prayers immediately following the above Gospel as well as the ensuing Pueri Hebraeorum:

      Antiphon. Pueri Hebraeorum, protantes ramos olivarum, obviaverunt Domino, clamantes, et dicentes: Hosanna in excelsis.

      Antiphon. Pueri Hebraeorum vestimenta prosternebant in via, et clamabant, dicentes: Hosanna Filio David: benedictus, qui venit in Nomine Domini.

      V. Dominus vobiscum.
      R. Et cum spiritu tuo.

      Oremus. - Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui Dominum nostrum Iesum Christum super pullum asinae sedere fecisti, et turbas populorum vestimenta, vel ramos arborum in via sternere, et Hosanna decantare in laudem ipsius docuisti: da, quaesumus; ut illorum innocentiam imitari possimus, et eorum meritum consequi mereamur. Per eumdem Jesum Christum Dominum nostrum, Qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum.
      R. Amen.

      Antiphon. The Hebrew children bearing olive branches, went forth to meet the Lord, crying out, and saying, Hosanna in the highest.

      Antiphon. The Hebrew children spread their garments in the way, and cried out, saying: Hosanna to the Son of God: blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord

      V. The Lord be with you.
      R. And with thy spirit.

      Let us pray. Almighty and everlasting God, who didst ordain that our Lord Jesus Christ should sit upon the foal of an ass, and didst teach the multitude to spread their garments or branches of trees in the way and to sing Hosanna to His praise: grant, we beseech Thee, that we may be able to imitate their innocence and deserve to partake of their merit. Through the same Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God for ever and ever.
      R. Amen.

    During the Procession of the Palms we find ramos again in the Antiphon from Matthew 21: 7 and John 12: 12 respectively as well as the immediate Antiphon following these. Finally, in the Responsory just before the Holy Mass is to begin, we find the Responsory Hymn following the Gloria, laus which is sung as the church doors are unlocked and the procession files into the nave:

      Ingrediente Domino in sanctam civitatem, Hebraeorum pueri resurrectionem vitae pronuntiantes,
      * Cum ramis palmarum: Hosanna, clamabunt, in excelsis.
      V. Cum audisset populus, quod Iesus veniret Ierosolymam, exierunt obviam et.
      * Cum ramis . . .

      As our Lord entered the holy city, the Hebrew children, declaring the resurrection of life,
      * With palm branches, cried out: Hosanna in the highest. V. When the people heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, they went forth to meet Him:
      * With palm branches . . .

    Again, at the Gospel reading of the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew, the faithful are instructed to stand and hold their palms as the Passion is read.

    There were several words that could have been selected for this holy day of Palm Sunday; such words as palmas for "palms", or "Hosanna" for heaping praise upon the Son of David in glory and the refrain of the Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus: Hosanna in excelsis - "Hosanna in the highest." We even toyed with a word few might be aware of, but is so symbolic considering it is the symbol of the new age movement today: unicornium - the "unicorns" which is taken from today's Introit from Psalm 21: 20, 22:

      Dómine, ne longe fácias auxílium tuum a me: ad defensiónem meam áspice: líbera me de ore leónis, et a córnibus unicórnium humilitátem meam. Ps. Deus, Deus meus, réspice in me: quare me dereliquísti? longe a salúte mea verba delictórum meórum.
      Repeat Domine, ne longe...
      O Lord, keep not Thy help far from me: look to my defense: deliver me from the lion's mouth and my lowness from the horns of the unicorns. Ps. O God, my God, look upon me: why hast Thou forsaken me? Why cannot my sinful words reach Thee, Who art my salvation?
      Repeat Lord, do not stand at a distance...

    Verse 22 is repeated in today's Tract also taken from various verses of David's Psalm 21. Though we have not chosen unicorn as the word of the day, a brief thought might be proffered here how two symbols of Sacred Scripture - the unicorn and rainbow, the latter a symbol with the dove, of salvation for Noe after the flood, have become two of the mainstay symbols of those who mock Christ and His teachings today with the horrendous and devastating new age movement that has denied the divinity of Christ and the sodomy agenda which dares God to destroy them as Sodom of old was demolished. These today who tempt almighty God are akin to the withered branches who, at one time, sprouted fresh buds when part of the tree, gaining strength and life from the roots of the tree and the life flowing through the veins of the bark. But, tempted by the slippery serpent that entwined itself among the branches, broke from the life-giving tree - the holy Catholic Church - and decided, as Adam and Eve were falsely led to believe that they could be like God and be their own tree. But as all have discovered, always too late, the branches who devise to stand on their own will wither and die for they are no longer part of the vine, no longer living members of the tree. This has happened throughout history when apostates bolt the true church or try to infiltrate her very veins and poison the rest of the branches - as is happening today with the abominable conciliar church. God must shear these branches, prune back the tree drastically to rid the good tree of those infected branches that threaten the good. We have our Lord's assurance in Matthew 7: 15-20 that a bad tree cannot yield good fruit and therefore is destined to be cast out. This the great Pruner shall do at the appointed time, or hour - as we discussed in yesterday's VerbumQUO - and the true tree shall flourish again stronger and more abundantly than ever.

    The English word "branch" comes from the Latin branca paw, claw and from which we also get "branchia" originally from the Greek branchia, the plural of branchion and from which come "bronchial" as in the bronchial tubes of the lungs, tree like branches within the lungs. But the word used in today's Proper throughout is ramos and therefore, we shall focus on that. It is the plural for the Latin noun ramus. From this we get the English adjectives "ramose" and "ramous" as Webster defines them:

    "Ramose", adjective [From Latin ramosus, from the singular noun ramus a branch.] Branched; consisting of or having branches. Ramous adjective a Ramose. b Branchlike." From this root word we also get "ramble" as the third definition asserts: "3. To extend or grow at random, as a vine; hence, branches." We also derive the word "ramification: noun. 1. Act or process of branching; specifically Botany arrangement of branches. 2. A branch or offshoot; also, the resulting branched structure. 3. A subdivision, an outgrowth, or a consequence; as, every ramification of his subject."

    The etymology and definition of the root "ramus" have ramifications for today's Proper and what the passages portend as a thorough fulfillment of the Scriptures; a breaking of the Old and establishment of the New. The venerable Benedictine Abbot Dom Prosper Gueranger puts this in perspective with these inspired insights:

        "Holy Church would have us give this momentary consolation to our heart, and hail our Jesus our King. She has so arranged the service of today, that it should express both joy and sorrow; joy, by uniting herself with the loyal hosannas of the city of David; and sorrow, by compassionating the Passion of her divine Spouse. The whole function is divided into three parts, which we will now proceed to explain. The first is the blessing of the palms; and we may have an idea of its importance from the solemnity used by the Church in this sacred rite. One would suppose that the holy Sacrifice has begun, and is going to be offered up in honor of Jesus' entry into Jerusalem. Introit, Collect, Epistle, Gradual, Gospel, even a Preface are said, as though we were, as usual, preparing for the immolation of the spotless Lamb; but, after the triple Sanctus! Sanctus! Sanctus! the Church suspends these sacrificial formulas, and turns to the blessing of the palms. The prayers she uses for this blessing are eloquent and full of instruction; and, together with the sprinkling with holy water and the incensation, impart a virtue to these branches, which elevates them to the supernatural order, and makes them means for the sanctification of our souls and the protection of our persons and dwellings. The faithful should hold these palms in their hands during the procession, and during the reading of the Passion at Mass, and keep them in their homes as an outward expression of their faith, and as a pledge of God's watchful love."

    The method and manner in which Holy Mother Church carries out the liturgy of Holy Week beginning with the magnificent ceremony of Palm Sunday proves the inspired wisdom of her selection of passages and how so much has been lost, alas discarded today by the conciliar church posing as 'Catholic' but, in truth, akin to those who praise and celebrate by feeling, but when the heart is empty react not out of faith but from laziness and impatience, shortening every ceremony in order to placate man in his comfort zone. Never mind the grueling torture Christ would undergo, we cannot tax the stamina of our lazy generation! That is why Traditional Catholics should treasure this week of intense liturgy that reveals so much as to not only the ultimate price Christ paid and why, but the very fulfillment of the passages in the Old Covenant that carry so many symbols completed in the New Covenant which Christ is to establish four days hence in the upper room and consummate on the Cross, so that those who are faithful can rightfully and duly celebrate His Resurrection and victory over death and sin. We see in the passages from Exodus the imagery of the seventy palm trees where the twelve fountains could be found that the chosen people were searching for and the Manna from Heaven promised by God. We see here, as Dom Gueranger explains the meaning:

    "The faithful, by a sincere conversion, have separated themselves from Egypt of a sinful world. They are offering the palms of their loyalty and love to Jesus, their King. The fountains typify the Baptism, which, a few days hence, is to be administered to our catechumens. These fountains are twelve in number; the twelve articles of the symbol of our faith were preached to the world by the twelve apostles. And finally, on the morning of Easter day, Jesus, the Bread of life, the heavenly Manna, will arise from the tomb, and manifest His glory to us."

    Two more passages from Exodus give us a clearer depiction of the Church's meaning today in the Blessing of the Palms as the Abbot affirms:

    "The priest begins by two scriptural allusions: the first is to Noah, who received an olive-branch, when the waters of the deluge had subsided; the second is to Moses, whose people, after quitting Egypt, encamped under the seventy palm trees. Then in the solemn tone of the Preface, he calls upon all creatures to give praise to the adorable name of Jesus, for Whom we are preparing the homage of our devoted love. Let us respond to the invitation, and sing with all our hearts: Holy! Holy! Holy! - Hosanna in excelsis!"

    During the Procession the Pueri Hebraeorum is sung, replicating the children of Israel - the Hebrew children - who lined the paths in honoring the Son of David. The symbolism at the end of this procession is profound and Gueranger, in Volume 6 of The Liturgical Year explains the significance of the church door being closed and the two choirs so simply and masterfully:

    "Immediately there are heard voices within the holy place; they are singing the praises of Christ, our King and Savior. These cantors represent the holy angels in Heaven, who are greeting the entry of Jesus into the eternal Jerusalem. Outside the church, there stands the choir, re-echoing the hymn of triumph; but it is man celebrating the entry of the Son of David into the earthly Jerusalem. The two choirs are thus kept separated from each other, until at length the victorious cross throws open the door, which represents the gate of Heaven, and unites the Church Militant with the Church Triumphant."

    What beautiful imagery as the choirs join in singing Gloria, laus, a hymn composed by a holy bishop of Orleans in France while he was incarcerated by King Louis in Augers. It has since been adopted by the universal Church with the beginning chorus repeated after each of the six stanzas. When completed the subdeacon, or celebrant (if there are not the appropriate orders participating), uses the cross to knock on the closed door. It is the cross which will open the door and as the choir sings the Responsory the faithful file in behind the celebrant and his accompanying servers. This Responsory Hymn, pointed out above, is repeated until the faithful are back in their respective places within the nave and the celebrant and his entourage in the sanctuary.

    The Mass now officially begins but all joy is removed as we see from the opening Introit included above and in the passages chosen including the Passion according to St. Matthew in today's Gospel. It is interesting to note that during the Epistle today from chapter 2: 5-11 of Philippians, the entire congregation kneels at the words in bold:

      Fratres : Hoc enim sentíte in vobis, quod et in Christo Jesu: qui, cum in forma Dei esset non rapínam arbitrátus est esse se æquálem Deo: sed semetípsum exinanívit, formam servi accípiens, in similitúdinem hóminum factus, et hábitu invéntus ut homo. Humiliávit semetípsum, factus obédiens usque ad mortem, mortem autem crucis. Propter quod et Deus exaltávit illum, et donávit illi nomen, quod est super omne nomen: [here all kneel] ut in nómine Jesu omne genu flectátur cæléstium, terréstrium, et infernórum: et omnis lingua confiteátur, quia Dóminus Jesus Christus in glória est Dei Patris.
      Brethren: yours is to be the same mind which Christ Jesus showed. His nature is, from the first, divine, and yet He did not see, in the rank of Godhead, a prize to be coveted; He dispossessed Himself, and took the nature of a slave, fashioned in the likeness of men, and presenting Himself to us in human form; and then He lowered His own dignity, accepted an obedience which brought Him to death, death on a cross. That is why God has raised Him to such a height, given Him that name which is greater than any other name; [here all kneel] So that everything in heaven and on earth and under the earth must bend the knee before the name of Jesus, and every tongue must confess Jesus Christ as the Lord, dwelling in the glory of God the Father.

    This humbling recognition is something totally lost on the apostate church today whose potentates demand that man stand, not kneel when presented the Body of Christ. The problem is they have separated the Body and Blood by positioning that one should receive both species - bread and wine - and these from unconsecrated hands no less. Whereas we can be assured in the Traditional Latin Mass that we are truly receiving our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Communion host placed on our tongues by validly consecrated priests, we cannot be sure, even highly, highly doubtful that there is any confection whatsoever since the modern presbyters of the conciliar church have eschewed the infallible, perpetual formula for confecting the wine into the Blood of Christ by the words pronounced and the abandonment of the sacerdotal singularity of pronouncing Mysterium Fidei which has been shoved to the last for the people to pronounce, thus disqualifying the validity of the Holy Sacrifice and leaving it in even greater question, albeit a sacrilege no less, by this and the abandonment of pro multis - "for many"; not "for all." One cannot change the words of Scripture and that is what the conciliar manipulators have done, taking away the continual sacrifice and setting up in its place - in the holy places - the "abomination of desolation" (Matthew 24: 15).

    Because of this very sacrilegious, yay, blasphemous action, millions, upon millions upon millions of branches have been scattered and left to wither off the vine of Truth and Tradition; adopting synthetic desperate measures to continue to breathe. Their lungs are full of heresy and they do not realize how fast the very organs of life are losing their vitality until even the heart will no longer believe, no longer have the strength or wisdom to realize these branches have been placed on artificial respiration because they cannot bloom and live on their own. Their palms are empty, waving in the breeze of modernism and every other heresy devised by man to deprive Christ of His glory and man of his triumphant entry into the heavenly Jerusalem. Whether those going through the motions know it or not, they replicate the perfidious Jews for their hosannas ring empty by their actions, and they are prey to the horns of the unicorn, the horns of satan, for they are hosannas hooked on the horns of dilemma.

Michael Cain, editor, The Daily Catholic