Click above for video of the Mass of Solemn Profession celebrated here this past November 7th, during which Fr. Gabriel Gillen, O.P., and I professed our final vows in the Order of Preachers.
The music heard in the video is an ancient Dominican chant entitled “Sicut in holocaustis arietum.” It was sung during the Offertory of the Mass by a schola composed of student brothers from the Dominican House of Studies, who traveled to New York to attend the Profession Mass. The full text of the chant reads, in English: “As a holocaust of rams and bullocks, and of thousands of fatted lambs, so let our sacrifice be in your sight on this day, that it may be pleasing unto you. For there is no shame for those who put their trust in you, O Lord.” In his Summa Theologiae, St. Thomas Aquinas uses the image of the holocaust, mentioned in the chant, to illustrate the complete nature of the sacrifice required by religious when they make solemn profession. “The religious state may be considered . . . as a holocaust,” writes the Angelic Doctor, “whereby a man offers himself and his possessions wholly to God” (ST.II-II.186.7).
Fr. Dominic Izzo, O.P., Prior Provincial of the Province of St. Joseph, celebrated and preached the Mass.
The St. Vincent Ferrer Chorale shared musical duties with the chant schola, thus adding their own beauty and reverence to the solemn liturgy. Other student brothers assisted at the altar. Fr. Jordan Kelly, O.P., served as the Master of Ceremonies.