Of The Vestment, Or Casaula.



Of The Vestment, Or Casaula.

And how by the same is signified, and represented the virtue of Charity

1. This vestment, covereth both the body, & all the other habits, & in Latin is called Casula, of this word casa, a house because it covereth the whole man, like unto another little house: by which is understood the virtue of Charity, which as the Apostle sayeth, covereth the multitude of sins.

How charity towards God, and our neighbors

2. This garment, being divided into two parts: doth put us in mind of a double, or two-fold charity. The one towards God, to love him above all things. The other, to our neighbor, to love him as ourselves. Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, from thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and thy neighbor, as thy self. Deut.6.5. & Levit.19.18.

How charity to our friends, and to our enemies.

3. This garment is large, ample and open, neither tied nor girded, as the other ornaments are: to give us to understand, that charity extendeth itself far off, not only in doing good to our friends, but also to our very enemies, never ceasing to do well to all persons, whensoever time and occasion is offered. If you love them, who love you, what reward shall you have, do not also the Publicans this? Mat.5.46

How the Church, before and after Christ.

4. Likewise, the forepart (which is the lesser) representeth the Church, before Christ's Passion, and the hinder part (which is the larger and bigger, and hath the Cross on it:) signify, the increase of Christ's Church, since his Passion.

How the uniting, of the Jews & Gentiles.

5. The uniting thereof above, signifeth the uniting of the two people (the Jews and the Gentiles) in the confession of one faith, as it was foretold, saying: And there shall be one Pastor, and one flock.

How the Vestment of sundry virtues exercised in the Catholic Church.

6. This garment, is commonly rich, and curiously wrought with gold: insinuating that which the royal Prophet sayth, in the Psalm: Astuit Regina a dextris juis. The Queen (to wit, the Church) stood upon thy right hand, in a golden Vestment, compassed about with variety. Psal.44.

How the purple Vestment.

7. It likewise representeth the Purple Vestment, where with, the Jews clothed our Lord in scorn, and divers and sundry ways, abuse his holy person. Mat.27.10.

How unity, against schism and heresy.

8. This garment of our Lord, the Soldiers would not divide, because it was without seam: to fore-show, how great an offense it should be in those, who should presume to rent, or divide, the unity of Christ's Church, by schism, or heresy. John.19.23.

The Prayer.

The Priest, in putting on the same, prayeth, saying: Domine qui dixisti, & c. Lord who hast said, my yoke is sweet, and my burden is light: grant that I may so beare the same, that I may obtain thy grace.

How, by the two Crosses upon the Stole, and Maniple: is signified, the Crosses of the two Thieves. And by that upon the Vestment, the Cross of Christ.

And note, that upon three of these ornaments, belonging to the Priest, there is commonly made the sign of the Cross. Upon the Stole, and the Maniple, there is made two little Crosses; and the third upon the Vestment, more larger then the rest: whereby is signified unto us, a double mystery.

First, by the two lesser Crosses, upon the Stole and Maniple, is understood the crosses of the two thieves, who were crucified, one on the left-side, and the other on the right-side of our blessed Saviour, and he himself in the midst, signified by the Cross made upon the Vestment, which is greater then the other, as his Cross was greater then theirs.

How more perfection in the Priest, then other men.

Secondly, by these three Crosses, is given to understand, that the Priest ought to be of much more perfection, then other men, and that he should not only beare the Cross of Christ, signified by the Cross on the vestment: nor his own Cross, signified by the Cross on the Maniple, which he beareth on his left arm.

A Devout Exposition Of The Holy Masse 1622 

By John Heigham