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Catholic Pocket Dictionary/L



LAETARE SUNDAY             



LAST THINGS             







LEAGUE OF THE CROSS             



LEGEND, THE GOLDEN             


LIBERA ME             






LOW SUNDAY             



The banner of the cross, used by Constantine in his campaigns.


The feast of the Annunciation, March 25th.


The fourth Sunday in Lent, so called from the first word in the antiphon of the introit, "Rejoice, 0 Jerusalem, and gather together, all ye who love her," &c. This day is also known as Mid-Lent or Refreshment Sunday. On that one Sunday in Lent the altar is decked with flowers, the organ is played, and at the principal Mass rose-colored vestments are worn instead of violet ones.


Lamps have been from very early times used in Christian churches, and have had a sacred character attributed to them. Thus the fourth Apostolic Canon forbids anything to be offered at the altar except "oil for the lamp, and incense at the time of the holy oblation."


This title is used for want of a better to denote the Church's practice of celebrating Mass, administering the sacraments, and generally of performing her more solemn services in dead languages. For the Church cannot be said to use, or even to prefer, any one language. She requires some of her clergy to use Greek, Syriac, Coptic, Armenian, Slavonic, in Mass, just as strictly as she requires others to employ Latin.


The four last things are generally said to be Death, Judgment, Heaven, Hell. These are not all, but the most important, things which happen to men as they leave and after they leave this world.


The family of the Plautii Laterani had a magnificent house on the Coelian hill. This house, or a house on the same site, was known as the Lateran palace. Close to it is the Church of "the Savior," known as the Basilica Constantiniana, and also – because the Emperor Constantine built a Baptistery there, and Baptisteries are associated with St. John Baptist – as the Church of St. John Lateran. It is the chief or Cathedral Church of Rome, and there the "Stations" are held on many solemn days. In this church, besides an important council in 649 against the Monothelites, five general councils have been held.


Latria in itself simply means "service," whether rendered to God or man; but the usage of the Church has made it a technical term for that supreme worship which can lawfully be offered to God alone.


The first word of verse 6 of Ps. xxv., which the priest recites while the acolytes pour water on his hands shortly before the Canon of the Mass. The rite indicates the perfect purity of heart with which the priest should celebrate those holy mysteries.


Persons who take the habit and vows of religion, but are employed mostly in manual labor, and are exempt therefore from the duties of choir, when they exist, or from the studies, &c., incumbent on the other members of religious orders, where there is no choir.


One of the people as distinguished from the Clergy.


This is the popular name for the “Congregation of the Priests of the Mission,” founded by St. Vincent of Paul in 1624, and established a few years later in the College of St. Lazare at Paris.

The congregation was confirmed by a bull of Pope Urban VIII in 1632 and its object was the sanctification of its members, the work of the missions and the training of the Clergy. St. Vincent, aided by several priests who had for many years been associated with him in preaching in the country districts and looking after the poor, the orphans and waifs abandoned by their parents or guardians, was invited in 1632 by the Archbishop of Paris to take up his abode in the College of St. Lazare. At present the congregation has missions in nearly every land.


The Catholic Total Abstinence League of the Cross was founded in 1873, for the purpose of uniting Catholics in a holy warfare against intemperance, and of thereby raising the religious, social, and domestic state of our Catholic people. "Total abstinence from intoxicating drinks is for all persons the surest safeguard, and for vast numbers the only safeguard, from intemperance. Those, therefore, who abstain from intoxicating drinks for the sake of Christian prudence towards themselves, or of Christian charity towards others, by so doing please Almighty God." The fundamental rules of the League are:

1.   The pledge is of total abstinence, and is taken without limit as to time.

2.   Only Catholics can become members of the League.

3.   All members, after they have joined the League, must live as good, practical Catholics.

4.   No one who is not a practical Catholic can, as long as he fails to practice his religion, hold any office in the League.

The form of the pledge is: "I promise to you, Rev. Father, and to the League of the Holy Cross, by the help of God's grace, to abstain from all intoxicating drinks." To this is usually added: "And I also promise to be faithful in the practices of my holy religion." The pledge is not an oath or a vow, and is not of itself binding under sin. But it would be a sin for those to break the pledge who know that they would thereby expose themselves to the danger of intemperance. Many indulgences have been granted to members by the Holy See.


A cleric, in minor orders.


Among the Romans legati were either ambassadors, or officers of high rank appointed with the sanction of the senate to assist a dictator, consul, or proconsul in the performance of his duties, military or civil. In modern acceptation the term is confined to ecclesiastics representing the Holy See and armed with its authority. Legates are of three kinds – legates a latere, emissaries or nuncios (legati missi, nuntii, internuntii), and legates by virtue of their office (legati nati). The dignity of a legate a latere is, and has long been, confined to cardinals, though in former times it was not so: e. g. Pandulf, the legate sent by Innocent III to receive the submission of King John, was only a sub-deacon. Legates a latere are either ordinary or extraordinary: the first govern provinces belonging to the Ecclesiastical State – such as were (before 1860) the Romagna and the Marchie of Ancona – in the Pope's name; the second class are deputed to visit foreign Courts on extraordinary occasions, such as a negotiation for a peace, or arrangements for a general council, &c. Legati missi correspond to the ambassadors and ministers maintained by secular States at foreign capitals. Formerly they were called apocrisiarii: now, nuncios or internuncios – the latter being of inferior rank. Legati nati are, or were, archbishops to whose sees by an ancient Papal concession the legatine authority was permanently attached.


By this name is known the earliest collection made in the West of the Lives of Saints, as the work of Metaphrastes was the earliest Greek collection of the same kind.


A fast of forty days preceding Easter, kept, after the example of Moses, Elias, and, above all, of Christ Himself, in order to prepare the faithful for the Easter feast, and also of course on account of the general advantages to be derived from a long period of penance.


A responsory sung by the choir after the Mass of the dead and before the absolution of the corpse.


The Latin word Limbo was used in the middle ages for that place in which the just who died before Christ were detained till our Lord's resurrection from the dead.


A form of united prayer by alternate sentences, in which the clergy lead and the people respond: usually of a penitential character. A litany may thus be distinguished from other modern devotions, such as that of the Stations, in which, with much that is alternate, there is also much that is not. There are four forms of litany recognized by the Church as suitable for use in public worship; viz., the Litany of the Saints, that of the Blessed Virgin (usually called the Litany of Loreto), that of the Most Holy Name of Jesus, and that of the Sacred Heart.


It consists of psalms, lessons, and hymns in honor of the Blessed Virgin, arranged in seven hours like the Breviary office, but much shorter. It is not influenced by the course of the Church year, except that the Alleluia is omitted in Lent, and that a change is made in the office from Advent to the Purification.


The word means a public service. In the fourth century the use of the word liturgy for priestly ministrations was fully recognized and ceremonies were adopted and approved. From that date down at least to the sixth century it was used for any solemn service (that is evening prayer, baptism, &c.), but especially for the Eucharistic service.


Loreto is the famous Santa Casa, or Holy House, which tradition asserts to be the very same building in which the Blessed Virgin Mary dwelt at Nazareth, where she heard the message of the archangel, and where the Holy Family resided during the childhood and hidden life of our Lord.


The first Sunday after Easter. The name Low Sunday emphasizes the contrast between the great Easter solemnity and the Sunday which ends the octave.


A circular crystal case, fitting into an aperture in the monstrance, in which the Blessed Sacrament is placed for exposition.


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