|SUSCIPE, SANCTA TRINITAS
(Taken from Notes Made at the Conferences of Dom Prosper Guéranger).
The Priest having ended the Psalm, returns to the middle of the Altar, and there, with his hands joined and his head slightly inclined, he says: Suscipe Sancta Trinitas, hanc oblationem quam tibi offerimus ob memoriam Passionis, Resurrectionis et Ascensionis Jesu Christi Domini nostri ...[Accept, holy Trinity, this offering which we make to you in remembrance of the passion, resurrection and ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ...]
Things of high import here stand before us. An Oblation is spoken of: Suscipe hanc oblationem: Receive this Oblation. The Priest says these words of the Bread and Wine just offered by him; nevertheless, he has really in view neither this Bread nor this Wine. These things are, indeed, sanctified and blessed, and hence they deserve to be treated with respect; but the Oblation here presented to the Divine Majesty, could never be confined to an order of Sacrifice purely material, as was that of the Jews; it is evident, therefore, that the Priest is here stretching forward in thought to a something far higher: he is presenting the Offering of the Great Sacrifice which is soon to be accomplished. - And, O holy Trinity, we offer this Oblation to Thee, in memory of the Passion, of the Resurrection, and of the Ascension of Jesus Christ, our Lord. So, we must here note these three things in Our Lord, without which He would not be complete. First of all, He suffered, but He could not be satisfied with suffering alone, so He died also, and these two coupled, constitute what we call His Passion; but this is not all, the Lord rose again. Death, the punishment of sin, is, as it were, the devil’s triumph over man, and therefore it would have been a true defeat suffered by Christ, had He died without afterwards Rising again. But further still, He hath gone up into Heaven, by His glorious and triumphant Ascension. Our Lord could not possibly have remained on earth; until He open Heaven, and Himself enter therein, in His Human Nature, Heaven must needs remain closed to man; on this very account, therefore, our salvation is not wholly effected, unless Our Lord ascend to Heaven, after having suffered for us, notwithstanding His being truly the Risen-One, being, as St. Paul expresses it, “the First-Born from amongst the dead!” So, then, let us well drink in this great Truth, namely, that Our Lord Suffered, that He Arose, but that man’s salvation is not wholly accomplished, if he still abide as an exile on our earth; to the Passion and Resurrection, must needs be added the Ascension. Such, then, should be our Faith, because such is the Economy of our Salvation, in which are contained these Three Things: the Passion, the Resurrection, the Ascension. So well does Holy Church understand that these Three are needed to complete Christ, and that therein is our whole Faith comprised, that she makes a point of insisting on our expressing the same in a marked manner, here at this moment of the Offering of the Sacrifice.