Sunday, 21 January 2018

January 8th - 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 a commemoration was sung of the Octave of the Epiphany (the antiphon on the Magnificat being proper to the second day within the Octave, the 7th January, Videntes stellam Magi. 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 throughout the Octave.

At Mattins the invitatory is Christus apparuit nobis, Venite adoremus. The Office 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, and the Office hymn is O Sola magnarum urbium. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is sung of the Octave, the antiphon on the Benedictus is Tria sunt munera etc., proper to the 8th January.

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. Being a Sunday within an Octave there is no third collect. 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 8th January, Lux de luce. The Suffrages are omitted as are the Domincal preces at Compline.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 14 January 2018

January 1st - The Circumcision and Octave-Day of the Nativity of the LORD


The feast of the Circumcision of the LORD and Octave Day of the Nativity is of double rite and its liturgical colour is white. It is also the Sunday within the Octaves of St. Stephen, St. John and the Holy Innocents but these are not commemorated today in either the Office or Mass.

At first Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons O admirabile commercium etc were sung, doubled, with the psalms for feasts of the BVM (Pss. 109, 112, 121, 126 & 147). The Office hymn was Christe Redemptor omnium (as on the feast of the Nativity). The Doxology which has been sung since first Vespers of the Nativity Gloria tibi Domineetc continues to be sung until the Epiphany. After the collect of the feast there were no commemorations. At Compline the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is Christus natus es nobis, Venite adoremus and the Office hymn is Christe Redemptor omnium. In the first nocturn the antiphons Dominus dixit ad me etc, are sung with psalms 2, 18 & 23. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the Epistle to the Romans, Chapters 3 and 4 , 'What advantage then hath the Jew, or what is the profit of circumcision? and all of St. Paul's discourse on circumcison and the Gentiles. They are, therefore, longer than those found in the post-1911 books. In the second nocturn the antiphons Speciosus forma etc are sung6 & 95. The lessons are from St. Leo's seventh sermon on the Nativity of the LORD. These are significantly longer than those found in post-Clementine editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons In principio etc are sung with psalms 96, 97 & 98 and the homily is from the writings of St. Ambrose on St. Luke's Gospel. These are the same as in later editions of the Breviary. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the same antiphons that were sung at Vespers, O admirabile commercium etc, are sung with psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The Office hymn is as on the feast of the Nativity, A solis ortus cardine. The antiphon on the Benedictus, Mirabile mysterium etc, is proper to the feast. There are no commemorations.

At the Hours, the antiphons from Lauds are used in the usual order. The Doxology in honour of the Incarnation is sung at the hymns. At Prime the antiphon O admirabile commercium is sung with the festal psalms (Pss. 53, 118i & 118ii). In the short responsory the versicle Qui natus es is sung, as it has been from the feast of the Nativity and will be sung until the Vigil of the Epiphany inclusive. The lectio brevis is Ipsi peribunt. The chapters at the Hours of Sext and None are the same as those sung on the feast of the Nativity.

Mass is sung after Terce. The introit Puer natus is sung, there is a single collect, the Credo is sung and the preface and communicantes are of the Nativity.

At Second Vespers the antiphons O admirabile commercium are again sung with the same psalms as at first Vespers (Pss. Pss.109, 112, 121, 126 & 147). The versicle and its respond and the antiphon on the Magnificat are proper to Second Vespers of the feast. A commemoration is sung of the following Octave Day of St. Stephen.

Sunday, 7 January 2018

December 25th - The Nativity of the LORD


The feast of the Nativity of the LORD is a double feast with an Octave and its liturgical colour is white. The Office of the Nativity completely takes the place of the Sunday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Rex pacificus magnificatus est etc were sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113. The Office hymn was Christe Redemptor omnium. At Compline, and the Hours throughout the Octave, a proper Doxology, Gloria tibi Domine, Qui natus es de Virgine, Cum patre et almo Spiritu, In sempiterna saecula, is sung at all hymns of Iambic metre until the Epiphany. At Compline the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is Christus natus est nobis, Venite adoremus. When intoning the hymn, Christe, Redemptor omnium, the Hebdomadarius turns and bows to the altar. Mattins has three nocturns and the usual nine lessons. In the first nocturn the lessons are from Isaiah but, interestingly, are sung without a title. These are the same as in the modern editions. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from a homily on the Nativity by St. Leo. All three lessons are longer than in the post-Clementine editions. In the third nocturn three Gospel pericopes are sung, two from St. Luke and the third from St. John. The seventh lesson does not begin at the words Quia, largiente Domino, as in the later editions, but at Quid est, quod nascituro Domino. It is longer by a couple of sentences. The eighth lesson is longer by a sentence and the ninth lesson by several sentences. After the Te Deum the collect is sung followed by Benedicamus Domino. Then the first of the three Masses for the Nativity is sung. The Gloria is sung (one theory of its origin in the Mass rite is from the song of the Angels on Christmas night to the shepherds) as is the Creed. The preface and communicantes are of the Nativity. Lauds immediately follow this Mass.

At Lauds a different set of antiphons to those used at first Vespers, Quem vidistis pastores etc., are sung with the Dominical psalms (92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150). The Office hymn is A solis ortus cardine.

Later in the morning Prime is sung. The first antiphon from Lauds, Quem vidistis pastores, is sung with the festal psalms (53, 118i & 118ii). In the short responsory the versicle Qui natus es de Maria Virgine is sung. Prime is followed by the second Mass, the Missa in aurora, that has a second collect to commemorate St. Anastasia. The Gloria and Creed are sung, the preface and communicantes are of the Nativity.

After Terce the third Mass is sung. This Mass too has the Gloria and Creed along with the preface and communicantes of the Nativity. As the Gospel pericope for this Mass is In principio the Gospel of the Epiphany, Cum natus esset Jesus, is read as a proper last Gospel.

Second Vespers has yet a third set of proper antiphons for the feast, Tecum principium etc., that are sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 129 and 131. These antiphons and psalms will be used through the Octave. After the collect of the feast a commemoration is sung of the following feast of St. Stephen.

A very blessed and Holy, Julian Kalendar, Christmass to all.

Saturday, 6 January 2018

December 24th - Vigil of the Nativity

The Vigil of the Nativity is unique in the Liturgical Year in that it is of simple rite at Mattins and then becomes of double rite from Lauds onwards. The liturgical colour throughout is violet.

Mattins has a single nocturn of three lessons, preceded, where it is of observed, by Mattins and Lauds of the BVM. The invitatory is Hodie scietis quia veniet Dominus, Ex mane videbitis gloriam ejus and the hymn is Verbum supernum prodiens. The antiphons Ut non delinquam etc are sung with psalms 97, 98, 91, 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107 & 108 from the Psalter for Saturday. After the last antiphon a versicle proper to the day, Hodie scietis, quia veniet Dominus, and its respond, Et mane videbitis gloriam ejus are sung. The homily is taken from St. Jerome's commentary on the first chapter of St. Matthew's Gospel. The first lesson consists of the text of both the first and second lessons in the post-Clementine books. The second lesson is the same as the modern third lesson. The third lesson, Joseph fili David noli timere (...) salvum faciet populum suum, is entirely absent from the post-Clementine books. A third responsory is sung in place of the Te Deum. At Lauds the antiphons, Judaea et Jerusalem nolite timere etc (sung under double rite), are proper to the day and are sung with the psalms of Sunday (92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite and 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Vox clara ecce intonat. The V & R, chapter, antiphon on the Benedictus, and collect are proper to the Vigil. The ferial preces are not sung. As the Office is now of double rite the Officium Parvum is not celebrated.

At Prime the first antiphon sung at Lauds is sung with Pss. 53, 118(i) and 118(ii). The Martyrology is sung with extra solemnity today. The Hebdomadarius dons a violet cope and preceded by acolytes bearing candles and a thurifer with incense enters the choir. After reverencing the choir and altar the Martyrology is censed, as a Gospel book, three times. The the choir rise and the Hebdomadarius chants Octavo Kalendas Januarii. Then, after announcing the moon, continues Anno a creatione mundi, quando in principio Deus creavit coelum et terram, quinquies millesimo centesimo nonagesimonono: A diluvio etc., listing the years since the birth of Abraham, the Exodus from Egypt, the anointing of David, the time since Daniel the Prophet, since the founding of Rome and the conception of the LORD by the Holy Ghost '...novemque post conceptionem decursis mensibus', then raising the pitch of the chant, whilst the choir kneel, he continues, 'in Bethlehem Judae nascitur ex Maria Virgine factus Homo'. Then in the tone of the Passion: 'Nativitas Domini nostri Jesu Christi secundem carnem.' The choir then rise and sit whilst in the normal tone the Hebdomadarius (or a lector, depending on the custom of the place) continues with the entries for the day: 'Eodem die natalis santae Anastasiae etc. The lectio brevis, Per quem accepimus, is proper to the Vigil. The antiphons from Lauds are used in sequence at the rest of the Hours.

Mass is sung after None. Today the ministers do not wear folded chasubles but dalmatic and tunicle. There is just one collect. The dismissal, Benedicamus Domino, is sung by the deacon to a most beautiful and ornate tone reserved for today, the feast of the Holy Innocents and pro re gravi Masses.

First Vespers of the Nativity are sung in the afternoon. The antiphons Rex pacificus etc are sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. All hymns of Iambic metre have the Doxology Gloria tibi Domine, Qui natus es de Virgine for the Octave and up until the feast of the Epiphany. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

December 21st - St. Thomas the Apostle


The feast of St. Thomas the Apostle is of double rite and its liturgical colour is red. According to tradition St. Thomas preached the Gospel in Asia and the Indian sub-continent. He is believed to have founded, inter alia, the St. Thomas Christians on the West coast of India, one of several groups using the East-Syrian family of liturgies.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Hoc est praeceptum meum etc were sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The Office hymn was Exsultet caelum laudibus. The antiphon on the Magnificat was proper to the feast, Quia vidisti me etc. After the collect of the feast the Advent feria was commemorated with the Great 'O' Antiphon appointed for the 20th December, O clavis David and the collect of the preceding Sunday. At Compline the preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is Regem Apostolorum Dominum, Venite adoremus and the Office hymn is Aeterna Christi munera. In the first nocturn the antiphons In omnem terram etc are sung with psalms 18, 33 & 44. The lessons are Sic nos existimet homo from St. Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians. The third lesson is considerably longer than that found in the post-Clementine editions of the Breviary continuing Rogo ergo vos imatores mei (...) et spiritu, i.e, vv. 16-21. In the second nocturn the antiphons Principes populorum etc are sung with psalms 46, 60 & 63. The fourth lesson, proper to the feast, is the same as in modern editions of the Breviary. The fifth and sixth lessons are from a homily of St. Gregory (from the Common) and are longer than those found in the 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. Gregory. These lessons are the same as in the post-Clementine editions of the Breviary. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Hoc est praeceptum meum etc are sung with Pss.92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-149-150. The antiphon on the Benedictus, Quia vidisti me, Thoma, credidisti: beati, qui non viderunt, et crediderunt, alleluia, is proper to the feast and refers to the incident recorded in the Gospel of St. John about St. Thomas' doubt in the Risen LORD. A commemoration is then made of the Advent feria, the antiphon on the Benedictus being Nolite timere etc proper to the 21st day of December with the collect of the preceding Sunday.

The antiphons sung at Lauds are sung in due order at the Horae Minores. At Prime the festal psalms (53, 118i & 118ii) are sung and the lectio brevis is Ibant Apostoli.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Advent feria (the collect of the preceding Sunday). The Creed is sung and the preface is of the Apostles.

At Vespers the antiphons Juravit Dominus etc are sung with Pss. 109, 112, 115, 125 & 138. The Office hymn is Exsultet caelum laudibus. After the collect of the feast the Advent feria is commemorated with the Great 'O' antiphon O Rex Oriens and the collect of the preceding Sunday. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

Sunday, 31 December 2017

December 18th - Fourth Sunday of Advent


The fourth Sunday of Advent is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is violet.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and Psalms of Saturday (Pss. 143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) were sung. The Office hymn was Conditor alme siderum. The Great 'O' Antiphon O Sapientia, proper to the 17th of December, was sung entire both before and after the Magnificat. The Suffrages, being Advent, were omitted. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory is Prope est jam Dominus and the Office hymn is Verbum supernum. In the first nocturn the antiphons Veniet ecce Rex etc are sung with Pss. 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14. The lessons in the first nocturn are taken from the prophet Isaiah. The first and second lessons are the same as those found in the post-Clementine editions of the Breviary. The third lesson is slightly longer continuing Viderunt insulae ... eum clavis, ut non moveretur, (i.e. the addition of Cap. 41 vv. 5 -7). In the second nocturn the antiphons Gaude et laetare etc are sung with Pss. 15, 16 and 17. The lessons are taken from a sermon of St. Leo on fasting in the tenth month. These lesson are substantially longer than in the modern editions of the Breviary. The sixth lesson text is completely absent from the modern editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons Gabriel Angelus etc are sung with Pss. 18, 19 and 20. The homily is from St. Gregory's writing on St. Luke's Gospel. These are the same as those found in the modern editions. A ninth responsory, Intuemini, is sung as the Te Deum omitted in the Office of Advent.

At Lauds the antiphons Canite tuba in Sion etc are sung with psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite and 148-149-150. The hymn is Vox clara ecce intonat. The Suffrages are omitted.

At Prime the first antiphon from Lauds, Canite tuba in Sion, is sung with the usual Dominical psalms (53, 117, 118i, 118ii) and Quicumque. In the short responsory the versicle is Qui venturus es in mundum. The Dominical preces are sung. At the other Hours the other antiphons of Lauds are sung in the usual order.

Mass is sung after Terce. The ministers wear violet folded chasubles. The introit is the delightful Rorate, caeli. The Gloria in not sung, the second collect is of the Blessed Virgin in Advent, Deus, qui de beate, the third collect Ecclesiae. The Creed is sung and the common preface is sung. As the Gloria was not sung, the dismissal is Benedicamus Domino sung by the deacon facing the altar.

At Vespers the antiphons Canite tuba in Sion etc are again sung now with Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113. The Office hymn is Conditor alme siderum. The Great 'O' antiphon on the Magnificat is O Adonai. The Suffrages are omitted. After Benedicamus Domino and its response Vespers of the Dead are sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 24 December 2017

December 11th - Third Sunday of Advent


The third Sunday of Advent is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is violet. However, unlike the other Sundays of Advent today at Mass the Deacon wears a dalmatic and the subdeacon a tunicle and the organ may be played. The semi-double feast of St. Damasus is transferred to Monday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms of Saturday were sung. The chapter, Fratres: Gaudete in Domino semper, was of the Sunday. The Office hymn was Conditor alme siderum. The Suffrages were omitted being Advent. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory is Prope est jam Dominus and the hymn is Verbum supernum. In the first nocturn the antiphons Veniet ecce Rex etc are sung with Pss. 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14. The lessons in the first nocturn are taken from the prophet Isaiah. The first lesson is longer than that found in modern editions and continues until the penultimate sentence of the modern second lesson: justitiam discent habitatores orbis. The second lesson begins Misereamur impio... and continues all through the text of the modern third lesson and beyond: Indulsisti genti Dominie ... murmuris doctrina tua eis. The third lesson is absent from the modern editions and begins Sicut quae concepit... and continues until ... non operiet ultra interfectos suos. (vv. 17 -21). In the second nocturn the antiphons Gaude et laetare etc are sung with Pss. 15, 16 and 17. The lessons are taken from a sermon of St. Leo. These are substantially longer than in the modern editions of the Breviary. The sixth lesson text is completely absent from the modern editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons Gabriel Angelus etc are sung with Pss. 18, 19 and 20. The homily is from St. Gregory's writing on St. John's Gospel. These are the same as those found in the modern editions. A ninth responsory, Docebit nos Dominus, is sung and the Te Deum omitted in the Office of Advent.

At Lauds the antiphons Ecce veniet etc are sung with psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite and 148-149-150. The hymn is Vox clara ecce intonat. As noted above for Vespers the Suffrages are omitted in Advent.

At Prime the first antiphon from Lauds, Ecce veniet, is sung with the usual Dominical psalms 53, 117, 118(i), 118(ii) and Quicumque. In the short responsory the versicle Qui venturus es in mundum replaces Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris. The Dominical preces are sung. At the other Hours the other antiphons of Lauds are sung in the usual order.

Mass is sung after Terce. As noted above the ministers wear violet dalmatic and tunicle rather than folded chasubles. The Gloria in not sung, the second collect is of the Blessed Virgin in Advent, Deus, qui de beate, the third collect Ecclesiae. The Creed is sung, the preface is the Common Preface. As the Gloria was not sung, the dismissal is Benedicamus Domino sung by the deacon facing the altar.

Vespers are of the Sunday. The antiphons Ecce veniet etc are sung with Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113. The Office hymn is Conditor alme siderum. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is sung of the following, transferred, feast of St. Damasus. The Suffrages are omitted. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal