March 4, St Casimir Jagiellon (Kazimierz Jagiellończyk)

March 4
SAINT CASIMIR (KAZIMIERZ) JAGIELLON, PRINCE
Feast
In the Province of Białystok and the Diocese of Radom:
Primary patron saint of the province and diocese – Solemnity
In the Archdiocese of Kraków: Patron saint of the archdiocese – Feast

Casimir was a son of King Casimir Jagiellon. He was born in 1458. He was known for his chastity and mercy to the poor. Alongside his father he actively participated in the political life of the country. A fervent venerator of the Eucharist and the Blessed Virgin Mary, he devoted much time to prayer. He died after a long-lasting lung disease in 1484.

Common of Holy Men, except:

[PDF Version]

EVENING PRAYER I

HYMN

O steadfast prince, Saint Casimir,
O royal son and county’s pride,
You are like a star that shone
Over our land.

Living in the world, not for the world,
You chose the path of humble love
Knowing that only in God is delight
And happiness.

How difficult to disdain honours
And deep within remain poor,
How tough among youth’s temptations
To stay pure!

Teach us, O prince, to seek Lord’s will
And in Mary see our gentle mother;
May she embrace
Both your nations with her robe.

Pray for us, O saint prince,
For we wish to praise the Triune God
with the song of gratitude in heavenly land with you
Forever and forevermore. Amen.

Antiphons, Psalms, Reading, Responsory and Intercessions as in Common of Holy Men.

CANTICLE OF MARY

Ant. For God took delight in him, he found his love and was taken up, so that the lure may not lead his soul astray.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

God, you gave sustenance in good ways to Saint Casimir,
who lived in royal court and was exposed to worldly temptations,
grant, we pray, that by his intercession we may learn to
tear our hearts away from earthly pleasures
and strive for the eternal ones.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

 INVITATORY

Ant. Let us praise our God, by worshipping Saint Casimir.

Invitatory psalm as in Ordinary.

OFFICE OF READINGS

HYMN

Even if a just one dies prematurely,
In Lord’s peace he shall find rest,
For the mature age is measured with wisdom,
Blemishless life and quest for God.

Lord had mercy on his chosen servant,
He wished to deliver him from evil and sin,
And so that vanity may not seduce his soul,
He took him up from earth to his light.

Faithful and pure he lived through a lot,
Still young he became flawless
And his memory shines with bright glow
To show the path in the darkness.

To Holy Trinity: Father and Son
With fiery Spirit praise and glory;
May all people, worshipping God’s goodness,
Walk the paths of faith and love. Amen.

FIRST READING

From the book of Wisdom 6:1-3, 9-21
Wisdom necessary for princes

Hear, therefore, kings, and understand; learn, you magistrates of the earth’s expanse! Hearken, you who are in power over the multitude and lord it over throngs of peoples! Because authority was given you by the LORD and sovereignty by the Most High, who shall probe your works and scrutinize your counsels!

To you, therefore, O princes, are my words addressed that you may learn wisdom and that you may not sin. For those who keep the holy precepts hallowed shall be found holy, and those learned in them will have ready a response. Desire therefore my words; long for them and you shall be instructed.

Resplendent and unfading is Wisdom, and she is readily perceived by those who love her, and found by those who seek her. She hastens to make herself known in anticipation of men’s desire; he who watches for her at dawn shall not be disappointed, for he shall find her sitting by his gate.

For taking thought of her is the perfection of prudence, and he who for her sake keeps vigil shall quickly be free from care; Because she makes her own rounds, seeking those worthy of her, and graciously appears to them in the ways, and meets them with all solicitude.

For the first step toward discipline is a very earnest desire for her; then, care for discipline is love of her; love means the keeping of her laws; To observe her laws is the basis for incorruptibility; and incorruptibility makes one close to God; thus the desire for Wisdom leads up to a kingdom. If, then, you find pleasure in throne and scepter, you princes of the peoples, honor Wisdom, that you may reign as kings forever.

RESPONSORY Psalms 41:31, 84:11

If you uphold me I shall be unharmed,
And set in your presence for ever more.

The threshold of the house of God I prefer to the dwellings of the wicked.
And set in your presence for ever more.

SECOND READING

From the life of Saint Casimir by a contemporary author
(Ch. 2-3; Acta Sanctorum Martii 1, 347-348)
He treasured God’s Commandments

Indescribable and most sincere love for Almighty God in the Holy Spirit overtook, filled and emanated from the depth of Saint Casimir’s heart to such an extent that there was nothing more pleasant or desirable for him than to dispense his possessions and himself to the poor of Christ, the harbourless, the sick, the imprisoned and the afflicted.

For widows, orphans and the oppressed he was more of a father, son and brother than a patron or benefactor. A lot would have to be written if we wished to present in turn all his works of fervent love for God and neighbours. It is hard to describe or imagine how much he obeyed justice, showed prudence, shone with courage and steadiness – and all of this at an age when man is so prone to evil.

Every day he commanded his father to do justice in his rule over the kingdom and particular nations. And if sometimes negligence occurred, caused by oversights or human frailties, he did not fail to rebuke him with meekness and humility.

He stood up for the issues of the poor and oppressed as his own, so that the  people proclaimed him protector of the poor. Never, being a royal son of the most noble house, did he appear to be disagreeable while meeting or talking to common people of lower classes.

He desired to belong to the meek and poor in spirit, whose is the kingdom of God,  rather than to the famous and mighty of this world. He did not yearn for earthly honours and power; nor did he want to accept them from his father, fearing that the prickles of riches, which our Lord Jesus Christ had called thorns, might harm his spirit or cause the contamination of worldly issues.

All his family and confidants, honourable and noble men, who knew him well, some of whom still alive, unanimously confirm and testify that Casimir remained virgin throughout his life, until his death.[1]

RESPONSORY Sirach 29:11, 1 Timothy 6:11

Dispose of your treasure as the Most High commands,
For that will profit you more than the gold.

Pursue righteousness, devotion, faith, love, patience, and gentleness.
For that will profit you more than the gold.

TE DEUM You are God: we praise you.

CONCLUDING PRAYER as in Morning Prayer.

MORNING PRAYER

HYMN

We acclaim you, eternal Sun,
O Christ, whose grace
Makes people God’s children
And fill them with brightness.

You called Casimir
To live fully with you,
For he chose the path of faith
That leads to Father’s arms.

Among fickleness of the world
Chaste and poor in spirit,
With his heart he praised you
And your Mother Mary.

Pleasant to God and people alike,
His life short but busy,
He gained perfect wisdom
Seeing good only in you.

Today we beg you, Lord,
That the prince’s example
May move our cold hearts
And kindle them with love.

We praise you, Jesus,
Your Father and the Spirit
For the start of a new day
And the hope of new grace. Amen.

CANTICLE OF ZECHARIAH

Ant. Blessed be God who chose Casimir and guided his feet into the way of peace.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

God, you gave sustenance in good ways to Saint Casimir,
who lived in royal court and was exposed to worldly temptations,
grant, we pray, that by his intercession we may learn to
tear our hearts away from earthly pleasures
and strive for the eternal ones.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

DAYTIME PRAYER

If solemnity – antiphons and psalms from Proper of Seasons.
If feast – antiphons from Common of Holy Men, and Complementary Psalmody.
Reading and Responsory from Common, Concluding Prayer as in Morning Prayer.

EVENING PRAYER II

HYMN O steadfast prince, as in I Evening Prayer.

CANTICLE OF MARY

Ant. Early attaining perfection, he lived through a lot; his soul was pleasant to God and rejoices with him for ever.

Concluding Prayer as in Morning Prayer.


[1] Translated by DChojnacki (2014).

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