Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The Carmelite Martyrs of Compiègne

17 July is the feast of the blessed Carmelite martyrs of Compiègne, killed by the French revolutionaries on this day in 1794. You can learn more about them from Francois Poulenc's opera, "Dialogues of the Carmelites", Gertrud von le Fort's historical novel, "Song at the Scaffold", William Bush's "To Quell the Terror", or the easiest of all, go here and read Terrye Newkirk's excellent essay.

The collect for Martyr's feast day:

Deus, qui ob invictam in tuo amore constantiam beatam Teresiam et socias eius de vertice Carmeli ad martyrii coronam vocasti; tribue, quæsumus; ut te fideliter dilgentes, ad contemplandam speciem tuæ celsitudinis perducamur. Per Dominum. Amen.

The collect in the new English-language Carmelite office book is not quite a translation of the above, but the concepts are similar enough that I think it may be the Latin original of that shown below. See what you think:

"Lord God, you called Blessed Teresa of St Augustine and her companions to go on in the strength of the Holy Spirit from the heights of Carmel to receive a martyr's crown. May our love too be so steadfast that it will bring us to the everlasting vision of your glory. We ask this through our Lord. Amen."