Friday 13 August 2010

St Catherine's Trust Summer School

At the annual St Catherine's Trust summer school, which was held at Ardingly College in Sussex last week, a number of members were formally enrolled into the Sodality by our spiritual Director, Fr Andrew Southwell.

The summer school includes a session each afternoon in serving at the Traditional mass, with groups both for absolute beginners and for the more experienced. On the Friday, boys who qualified for full membership - i.e. who are able to serve Low Mass fluently and correctly - and who were willing to take on the commitments of membership were enrolled.

The ceremony of enrolment includes a promise by the candidates: "I offer myself to God almighty, to Blessed Mary ever virgin, and to our Holy Patron St. Tarcisius, and I promise to do my best to serve reverently, intelligently and accurately, having the glory of God and my own eternal salvation as my object."

Medals were blessed and distributed to full members, as can be seen in the picture above. The medal is currently a Sacred Heart medal on a royal blue ribbon. The royal blue ribbon symbolizes the Queenship of Mary, which is particularly appropriate since the feast of St Tarcisius is on 15th August, the Assumption of Our Lady. All members of the Sodality are encouraged to have a devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It is hoped in time that a specific medal for the Sodality will be produced, which as well as the Sacred Heart will include an image of St Tarcisius, and the motto "fidelis usque ad mortem." Until then, a generic medal of the Sacred Heart is being used.

All the newly enrolled members said together the Sodality prayer, and then Fr Andrew read the following collect (in Latin), before giving the final blessing:
"O Lord Jesus Christ, who didst come not to be served unto but to served, and who didst give to Blessed Tarcisius the grace of perseverance even unto death: grant to Thy servants, we beseech Thee, that while faithfully serving thy holy altars, they may, with faith like to his, worship Thee hidden in Thine adorable sacrament; and in their hearts and minds, O Lord, enkindle the love of Thy grace. Who livest and reignest, etc."

It should be noted that, given that our members are dispersed far and wide, all that is necessary for enrolment as a full member is application to the Secretary, with evidence of entitlement, and privately praying the prayers of commitment to the Sodality. Members may then wear the Sacred Heart medal, on the royal blue ribbon, to indicate membership.

However, where it is possible to be formally enrolled using the ceremony, this is encouraged, even where one is already a full member. The ceremony for full enrolment will be made available to MCs and priests who wish to use it, on application to the Secretary.

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