Sunday, 7 February 2016

January 25th - Conversion of St. Paul


The feast of the Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle is of double rite and its liturgical colour is white. The third Sunday after the Epiphany is commemorated in the Office and at Mass.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the proper antiphons, Ego plantavi etc., were sung, doubled, with the psalms from first Vespers of the Common of Apostles (Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116). The chapter, Office hymn (Doctor egregie, Paule), versicle & response, antiphon on the Magnificat and collect were all proper to the feast. After the collect of the feast commemorations were sung of St. Peter the Apostle and then of the third Sunday after the Epiphany. The Suffrages were omitted as were the Dominical preces at Compline.

At Mattins the invitatory is proper, Laudemus Deum nostrum, In conversione Doctoris Gentium. The Office hymn is proper, Doctor egregie, Paule, as sung at Vespers. In the first nocturn the antiphons Qui operatus est etc are sung with psalms 18, 33 & 44. The first nocturn lessons are from the Acts of the Apostles detailing the account of Paul falling from his horse and the LORD asking Saul why he persecutes the brethren. These are longer than those found in the later books: the text of the entire second lesson in the later books is contained within the first lesson in the Tridentine book. The second lesson consists of the text of the modern third lesson and, in addition, continues with Et abiit Ananias... to ...et cum accepisset cibum, confortatus es i.e. vv 17 & 18. The third lesson begins Fuit autem... and continues to ...agens in nomine Domine, i.e. vv 19 - 28, These verses are entirely absent from the later books. In the second nocturn the antiphons Tu es vas electionis etc are sung with psalms 46. 60 & 63 The lessons are from St. Augustine's fourteenth sermon on the Saints. These are longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons Saulus, qui et Paulus etc are sung with psalms 74, 96 & 98. The homily is from St. Jerome on St. Matthew's Gospel. The later books substitute a homily of St. Bede. The eighth and ninth lessons are read together and the ninth lesson of the day is formed from the three lessons given for the homily of the Sunday. These are again taken from St. Jerome on St. Matthew's Gospel and are the same as in the post-Clementine editions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Ego plantavi etc are sung with Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-14--150. The Office hymn is from the Common, Exsultet caelum laudibus. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of St. Peter the Apostle and of the Sunday. The Suffrages are omitted.

At the Hours the antiphons, Ego plantavi etc., are sung with festal psalmody in the usual order. At Prime the lectio brevis is proper to the feast, Saulus, adhuc spirans. Quicumque is not sung nor are the Dominical preces.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Mass is proper with the introit Scio cui credidi. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of St. Peter the Apostle, the third collect is of the Sunday. The Creed is sung, the preface is of the Apostles and the last Gospel is of the Sunday.

At second Vespers the antiphons Ego plantavi etc are sung again with the psalms from Second Vespers of Apostles (Pss. 109, 112, 115, 125 & 138). The Office hymn is, again, Doctor egregie, Paule. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of St. Peter, the Sunday and then of the following Office of St. Polycarp. The Suffrages are omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline.

Icon: From an Orthodox Church in Pennsylvania featured here.

Sunday, 31 January 2016

January 18th - St. Peter's Chair at Rome

The feast of St. Peter's Chair at Rome is of double rite and its liturgical colour is white. The second Sunday after the Epiphany is commemorated in the Office and at Mass.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Ecce sacerdos magnus etc were sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The Office hymn was Quodcumque vinclis. After the collect of the feast commemorations were sung of St. Paul the Apostle, St. Anthony the Abbot, of the Sunday and of St. Prisca. The Suffrages were omitted as were the Domincal preces at Compline.

At Mattins the invitatory is Tu es pastor ovium, princeps Apostolorum etc and the Office hymn is Quodcumque vinclis. In the first nocturn the antiphons Beatus vir etc are sung, doubled, with psalms 1, 2 & 3. The lessons are from the first Epistle of St. Peter. These are significantly longer than those found in the later editions of the Breviary. The text of the second lesson includes the text of the later second and third lessons. The third lesson, its text entirely absent from the later books, begins Propter quod and ends spes esset in Deo, i.e. vv 13-21. In the second nocturn the antiphons Invocantem etc are sung with psalms 4, 5 and 8. The lessons are from a sermon of St. Leo. Again, these are longer than thos found in the later editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons Domine etc are sung with psalms 14, 20 & 23. The homily is from St. Jerome on St. Matthew's Gospel as found on the feast of SS Peter and Paul. These are longer than those found in the later books for the June feast. Today the eighth and ninth lessons are read together to form an extended eighth lesson and the ninth lesson is formed from the three lessons given for the homily of the second Sunday after the Epiphany. This is from St. Jerome on St. Matthew's Gospel and the texts are the same as those found in the later books. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Ecce sacerdos magnus etc are sung, doubled, with the Dominical psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Jam bone pastor Petre. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of St. Paul the Apostle, of the Sunday and of St. Prisca. The Suffrages are omitted.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons from Lauds are sung in the usual order. At Prime the lectio brevis is Fungi sacerdotio etc.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of St. Paul the Apostle, the third collect of the Sunday and a fourth collect for St. Prisca. The Creed is sung, the preface is of the Apostles and the last Gospel is of the Sunday.

At second Vespers the antiphons Ecce sacerdos magnus etc, are sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 and 131. The Office hymn is Quodcumque vinclis. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of St. Paul the Apostle, the Sunday and of SS Maris & Others. The Suffrages are omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline.

Sunday, 24 January 2016

January 11th - Sunday within the Octave of the Epiphany


Sunday within the Octave of the Epiphany is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is white. The Gospel pericopes from St. Luke's Gospel describe the Finding in the Temple with the LORD debating with the learned doctors to the amazement of those who witnessed this manifestation of Him.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Ante luciferum genitus etc were sung, not doubled, with Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113. The chapter, Fratres: Obsecro vos, was proper to the Sunday. The Office hymn was Hostis Herodes impie. After the collect of the Sunday within the Octave commemorations were sung of the Octave of the Epiphany (the antiphon on the Magnificat being proper to the fifth day within the Octave, the 10th January, Omnes de Saba and of St. Hyginus. The Suffrages were omitted. At Compline Te lucis was sung with the Doxology Gloria tibi Domine, Qui apparuisti hodie etc as are the hymns of the Hours tomorrow.

At Mattins the invitatory is Christus apparuit nobis, Venite adoremus. The hymn is Hostis Herodes impie. The antiphons and psalms are as on the second day within the Octave. In the first nocturn the Incipit of St. Paul's Epistle to the Corinthians is read. The lessons are longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions: The first lesson includes the modern second lesson Gratias ago Deo meo ... Christi, Domini nostri. The second lesson begins Obsecro autem, the same as the modern third lesson. The third lesson is absent from the modern editions, Gratias ago Deo...prudentiam reprobabo, i.e. vv. 14 - 19. The first responsory is Hodie, the other responsories as on the feast. In the second nocturn the lessons are from a sermon of St. Leo (again these are longer than in the post-Clementine editions of the Breviary). In the third nocturn the homily is from St. Augustine, the lessons are the same as in the modern editions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons from the feast, Ante luciferum genitus etc are sung with the festal psalms (Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150). The chapter is proper to the Sunday, as sung at Vespers yesterday, the Office hymn is O Sola magnarum urbium. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of the Octave, the antiphon on the Benedictus is Hodie caelesti etc., and of St. Hyginus.

At the Hours the psalms of Lauds are used in the usual sequence. At Prime (Pss. 53, 118i, 118ii) the versicle Qui apparuisti hodie is sung (as it is for the entire Octave) and the lectio brevis is Sicut enim in uno corpore etc. The Dominical preces are omitted being within the Octave.

The Mass In excelso throno is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Octave, the third collect is of St. Hyginus. The Creed is sung and the communicantes and Hanc igitur are of the Epiphany.

At Vespers the antiphons Ante luciferum genitus etc are again sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113. The Office hymn is Hostis Herodes impie. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of the Octave is sung, the antiphon on the Magnificat being proper to the 11th January, Admoniti Magi.The Suffrages are omitted as are the Domincal preces at Compline.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

January 6th - The Epiphany of the LORD


The feast of the Epiphany is a double feast with an Octave. The liturgical colour of the feast and Octave is white.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Ante luciferum genitus etc were sung with the psalms from the First Vespers of the Common of Apostles (Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116). The chapter, Surge, illuminare, Jerusalem was from Isaiah, the Office hymn was Hostis Herodes impie. For the feast and its octave a Doxology in honour of the LORD's manifestation is sung at all hymns of Iambic metre: Gloria tibi Domine, Qui apparuisti hodie, Cum Patre, et Sancto Spiritu, In sempiterna saecula. The rest of the Office is proper. At Compline Te lucis was sung with the Doxology and tone of the feast.

Mattins begins, without Domine labia me, invitatory and hymn, with with the first antiphon of the first nocturn, Afferte Domino. Psalms 28, 45 & 46 are sung. The lessons in the first nocturn are from Isaiah. These are the same as in the post-Clement editions of the Breviary. In the second nocturn the antiphons Omnis terra adoret te etc are sung with psalms 65, 71 & 85 and the lessons are from a sermon on the Epiphany by St. Leo. The fifth and sixth lessons are longer than those found in the post-Clement editions. In the third nocturn the antiphon Venite adoremus eum etc is sung with Ps. 94, Venite , the usual invitatory psalm, in a responsorial manner. Psalms 95 and 96 are also sung in the third nocturn. The homily on St. Matthew's Gospel if from St. Gregory. These are considerably longer than those found in the later editions. The text of the last sentence of the eighth lesson and the entire ninth lesson are absent from the post-Clementine books. The Te Deum is sung.

After the last lesson of Mattins (or after Compline) the celebrant vested in amice, alb, stole and cope and assisted by deacon and subdeacon celebrates the solemn Blessing of the Waters. The rite (which can be found in the Marquess of Bute's excellent study 'The Blessing of Waters on the Eve of the Epiphany') contains antiphons, a Litany, an OT reading, a Gospel, numerous lengthy prayers, a preface, Sanctus, Pater noster etc., and culminates in a Cross being plunged by the celebrant into the waters whilst the choir sings Baptizatur Christus, et sanctificatur omnis mundus: et tribuit nobis remissionem peccatorum: aqua et Spiritu omnes purificamur. (Christ is baptized, and all the world is hallowed, and He granteth unto us the remission of sins. We are purified by water and the Spirit). There are clearly strong parallels with other solemn blessings such as that used for the Palms and the Font.

At Lauds the antiphons Ante luciferum genitus etc are sung with the psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-149-150. The chapter is Surge, illuminare from Isaiah and the Office hymn is O sola magnarum urbium.

At the Little Hours the antiphons from Lauds are sung in the usual order. At Prime (Pss. 53, 118i & 118ii), in the short responsory, a versicle Qui apparuisti hodie is sung today and during the Octave, the short lesson is Omnes de Saba. The Doxology Gloria tibi Domine, Qui apparuisti gentibus etc is sung at the hymns of the Little Hours.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Mass, Ecce advenit, is proper. The Gloria and Credo are sung. The preface and communicantes in the Canon are proper to the feast. After the Gospel of the Mass the Moveable Feasts for the year are traditionally announced.

At Vespers the antiphons Ante luciferum genitus etc are sung with psalms 109, 110, 11, 112 & 113. The Office hymn is Hostis Herodes impie. The antiphon on the Magnificat is Tribus miraculis. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

Monday, 18 January 2016

January 5th - Vigil of the Epiphany

The Vigil of the Epiphany is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour (from Mattins) is white. In the Tridentine Missal, and its reformed editions until 1956, the Vigil of the Epiphany takes the place of the Office of the Sunday which occurs between the 1st to 5th January and has all the privileges of a Sunday. Pre-Trent praxis sees a differentiation between the second Sunday after the Nativity of the LORD and the Vigil. The liturgical rank of the Comities Christi Octave Days meant the Sunday was perpetually outranked and had to be resumed on the 5th January. When January 5th falls on a Sunday the Creed is sung at Mass.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon second Vespers of the Octave Day of the Holy Innocents was sung. The antiphons Herodes iratus etc were sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 115. The Office hymn was Salvete flores martyrum, sung with the Doxology of the Incarnation. After the collect of the feast a commemoration was sung of the Vigil of the Epiphany (with the antiphon on the Magnificat and collect from the Sunday within the Octave of the Nativity).

At Mattins the invitatory, hymn, antiphons and psalms are those used for the feast of the Lord's Circumcision. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the seventh chapter of the Epistle to the Romans (c.f. the post 1911-13 rite). The lessons are longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions. The first lesson consists of the text of both the post-Clementine first and second lessons. The second lesson begins Quid ergo dicemus? (the beginning of the post-Clementine third lesson)and continues, beyond the limits of the post-Clementine third lesson Ego autem mortuus sum.. until per illud occidit i.e. vv. 10-11. The third lesson, entirely absent from the later books begins Itaque lex quidem... and continues until sed quod nolo malum, hoc ago i.e. vv. 12-19. The responsories are from the feast of the Circumcision. In the second nocturn the lessons are from a sermon by St. Augustine. These are significantly longer than those found in the later editions. In the third nocturn the homily is from St. Jerome's commentary on the second chapter of St. Matthew's Gospel. The lessons differ slightly from those found in the later editions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds and the Hours again the antiphons are those from the Circumcision, O admirabile commercium etc. The Dominical psalms are sung (Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-149-150) The chapter is proper to the Vigil, the hymn A solis ortus cardine as sung for the Nativity and the Circumcision, and the antiphon on the Benedictus is Dum medium silentium and the collect, Omnipotens.

At the Hours the antiphons of Lauds are sung in sequence in the usual order. At Prime (Pss. 53, 118i, 118ii) the preces are omitted and the lectio brevis is Itaque jam non est servus. The hymns of the Little Hours are sung with the Doxology and melody in honour of the Incarnation.

At Mass, sung after Terce, the Gloria is sung, the second collect of the BVM, Deus, qui salutis, the third collect Ecclesiae or pro papa. The preface is of the Nativity.

Vespers are first Vespers of the great feast of the Epiphany. The antiphons Ante luciferum genitus etc are sung with the psalms from the First Vespers of the Common of Apostles (Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116). The chapter, Surge, illuminare, Jerusalem is from Isaiah, the Office hymn Hostis Herodes impie. For the feast and its octave a Doxology in honour of the LORD's manifestation is sung at all hymns of Iambic metre: Gloria tibi Dominic, Qui apparuisti hodie, Cum Patre, et Sancto Spiritu, In sempiterna saecula. The rest of the Office is proper. At Compline Te lucis is sung with the Doxology and tone of the feast.

Sunday, 17 January 2016

January 4th - Octave Day of the Holy Innocents


The Octave Day of the Holy Innocents is of double rite. The liturgical colour of the Octave Day, from Mattins, is always red regardless of on what day of the week the feast falls.

Vespers yesterday afternoon were second Vespers of the Octave Day of St. John the Apostle and Evangelist. The antiphons Valde honorandus etc were sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 112, 115, 125 & 138. The Office hymn was Exultet caelum laudibus. Hymns of Iambic metre have the Doxology of the Incarnation. After the collect of the feast a commemoration was sung of the following Octave Day of the Holy Innocents. At Compline the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is Regem Martyrum Dominum, Venite adoremus and the Office hymn is Audit tyrannus anxius as on the feast. In the first nocturn the antiphons Secus decursus aquarum etc are sung with psalms 1, 2 & 3. The lessons are from the fifth chapter of the Epistle to the Romans. The first lesson is longer than that found in the post-Clementine editions. It continues Ut quid enim Christus... until ... quis audeat mori, i.e. vv. 6-7 which in later editions form the opening sentences of the second lesson. The second lesson begins Commendat autem charitatem and continues until ...per quem nunc reconcilliationem accepimus, i.e. vv. 8-11 what is contained in the modern second and most of the third lesson. The third lesson begins Propterea sicut per unum and continues until ...Christi in plures abundavit, i.e. vv. 12-15. The responsories are from the feast. In the first nocturn the lessons are taken from the Epistle to the Romans. In the second nocturn the antiphons Dabo sanctis meis etc are sung with psalms 14, 15 & 23. The lessons are taken from a sermon of St. Augustine on the Holy Innocents. These are the same as in the modern editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons Justi autem etc are sung with psalms 32, 33 & 45. The homily on St. Matthew's Gospel is from St. Chrysostom. The lessons are the same as those found in the later editions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons from the feast, Herodes iratus are sung with the festal psalms (92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150). The Office hymn is Salvete flores martyrum.

The antiphons from Lauds are sung in the usual sequence at the Little Hours. At Prime the festal psalms (53, 118i, 118ii) are sung. At the Hours the hymns have the Doxology in honour of the Incarnation sung Gloria tibi Domine etc.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung. The Alleluia and its verse are always sung on the Octave Day in place of the Tract. The preface is that of the Nativity (but not the communicantes).

At Vespers the antiphons Herodes iratus etc are sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 115. The Office hymn is again Salvete flores martyrum. After the collect of the feast a commemoration is sung of the following Vigil of the Epiphany.

Saturday, 16 January 2016

January 3rd - Octave Day of St. John the Apostle and Evangelist

The Octave Day of St. John the Evangelist is of double rite and the liturgical colour of the day is white.

At Mattins the invitatory is Regem Apostolorum Dominum, Venite adoremus and the Office hymn is Aeterna Christi munera, as on the feast itself, sung with the Doxology of the Incarnation. In the first nocturn the antiphons In omnem terram etc are sung with psalms 18, 33 & 44. The lessons are from the fourth chapter of the Book of the Apocalypse. These lessons are the same as in modern (i.e. until the 1911-13 reform) editions of the Breviary. The responsories are those proper to the feast. In the second nocturn the antiphons Principes populorum etc are sung with psalms 46, 60 & 63 and the lessons are from a tract of St. Augustine on St. John. The sixth lesson is substantially longer than that found in modern editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons Exaltabuntur etc are sung with psalms 74, 96 & 98. The homily on St. John's Gospel is from St. Chrysostom. These are, again, significantly longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions and the ninth lesson is entirely absent from the modern editions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Valde honorandus est etc. The Office hymn is Exultet caelum laudibus sung, of course, with the Doxology of the Incarnation. After the collect of the feast a commemoration is sung of the Octave of the Holy Innocents.

At the Hours the same antiphons from Lauds, Valde honorandus est etc., are sung in the normal sequence. At Prime the festal psalms are sung (53, 118i & 118ii), the lectio brevis is In medio Ecclesiae.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung. The second collect if of the Octave of the Holy Innocents. The Credo is sung and the preface is of the Nativity.

At Vespers the antiphons Valde honorandus etc are sung with psalms 109, 112, 115, 125 & 138. The Office hymn is Exultet caelum laudibus. After the collect of the feast a commemoration is sung of the following Octave Day of the Holy Innocents. It will be noted that the Octave Days of the Comites Christi entirely replace the Office of the second Sunday after the Nativity.

Portrait of St. John from the Book of Kells