Sunday, 30 May 2010

May 17th - Trinity Sunday


The Feast of the Most Holy Trinity is a double feast. It is also the first Sunday after Pentecost.

The feast began yesterday with first Vespers on Saturday afternoon. The Office is proper with the antiphons Gloria tibi Trinitas etc sung with Pss. 101, 110, 111, 112 and 116. The chapter, O altitudo, and hymn, O lux beata Trinitas, will be used at Vespers on Saturdays for all the Sundays after Pentecost. The antiphon on the Magnificat, Gratias tibi, Deus etc, and the collect, Omnipotens, are proper. A commemoration was sung of the first Sunday after Pentecost. After Vespers the antiphon Salve Regina is sung for the first time this year.

At Mattins there are three nocturns. The invitatory is proper, Deum verum, unum in Trinitate, et Trinitatm in Unitate, Venite adoremus. The hymn is Summae Deus clementiae. In the first nocturn the antiphons Adesto unus Deus etc are sung with psalms 8, 18 & 23. The lessons are taken from the sixth chapter of the Prophet Isaiah. These are identical to those found in the 'modern' books. In the second nocturn the antiphons Te invocamus etc are sung with psalms 46, 47 & 51. The lessons are taken from the Book of Bishop Fulgentius on faith. The fourth lesson continues with Si enim, sicut et Patris...veraciter Trinitas diceretur. The fifth lesson begins Rursus quidem Trinitas...and continues Per hanc unitatem...totus quoque Spiritus Sanctus in Patre et Filio. The sixth lesson begins Nullus horum and continues past the ending found in the 'modern' editions with three more sentences Sicut ergo...est trium personarum divinitas. In the third nocturn the antiphons Caritas Pater est etc are sung with psalms 95, 96 & 97. The lessons are from a homily of St. Gregory Nazianzen. These are again slightly longer than those found in the 'modern' editions. The seventh lesson continues Nec extensionem...atque potentiae credimus. The eighth lesson begins Et ideo unum... and continues Sic est Apostolus...per quem omnia et nos per ipsum. The ninth lesson is of the first Sunday after Pentecost, it ends slightly before the version in 'modern' editions with Ego sum panis vivus, qui de caelo descendi? The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Gloria tibi Trinitas are sung with the Dominical psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Tu, Trinitatis Unitas. A commemoration of the first Sunday after Pentecost is sung.

At Prime the festal psalms are sung (53, 118i & 118ii). The Creed of St. Athanasius, Quicumque, is sung after the last stanza of Ps. 118.

Mass is sung after Terce. Before Mass at the sprinkling of lustral water the antiphon Asperges me returns. The Mass is proper, Benedicta sit. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Sunday, the Credo is sung, the common preface is sung, and the last Gospel is of the Sunday.

In second Vespers a commemoration of the first Sunday after Pentecost is sung.

Art: Rublev's Icon from Wikipedia, the Hospitality of Abraham iterpreted as a symbol of the Trinity.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

May 10th - Pentecost Sunday


The feast of Pentecost is a double feast with an Octave.

At Vespers yesterday the antiphons Dum complerentur dies Pentecostes etc are sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The chapter is Dum complerentur dies Pentecostes etc, the hymn Veni, Creator Spiritus. Hymns of Iambic metre have the Doxology Gloria Patri Domino, Natoque, qui a mortuis, Surrexit ac Paraclito, In saeculorum saecula.

Mattins for the feast, and Octave, is like Pascha in only having one nocturn of three psalms and three lessons. The invitatory is Alleluia, Spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum, Venite adoremus Alleluia. The antiphons Factus est etc are sung with Pss. 47, 67 & 103. The lessons are from a homily of St. Gregory the Great on St. John's Gospel. The lessons are the same as those appearing in the 'modern' Breviary. At Lauds the antiphons, Dum complerentur dies Pentecostes etc, are the same as at Vespers and are sung with psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite and 148-149-150.

At Prime the festal psalms are sung (Pss. 53, 118i & 118ii). In the short responsory the versicle Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris, alleluia, alleluia is sung. The short lesson is Judaei quoque. At Terce instead of the usual hymn Nunc Sancte nobis the hymn Veni Creator is sung as it was at the third hour the Holy Ghost descended on the Apostles.

At Mass the Gloria is sung and there is only one collect. After the Alleluia the beautiful sequence Veni, Sancte Spiritus is sung. The Credo is sung. The preface, Communicantes and Hanc igitur are proper to the feast and used throughout the Octave.

Second Vespers are the same as for First Vespers except for the versicle and response and antiphon on the Magnificat. There are no commemorations.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

May 3rd - The Invention of the Holy Cross - Sunday within the Octave of the Ascension


The Invention of the Holy Cross is a double feast. Today is also Sunday within the Octave of the Ascension. The feast celebrates the discovery of the Holy Cross by the Empress Helena.

The Office of the feast began with first Vespers yesterday, the Office is proper. The antiphons Helena, Constantini mater etc (not found in the modern editions) were sung with Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The chapter was Fratres: Hoc enim senite in vobis etc, the hymn Vexilla regis was sung with the Ascension Doxology Gloria tibi Domine, Qui scandis super sidera, Cum Patre et Sancto Spiritu, In sempiterna saecula. Commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of St. Athanasius, of the Sunday and of SS Alexander and Companions. At Compline the Dominical preces were omitted due to the occurring double feasts and being within an Octave.


At Mattins the invitatory is Christum Regem crucifixum, Venite adoremus, alleluia. In the first nocturn the antiphon Inventae Crucis etc is sung, with Pss 1, 2 and 3. The first lesson is from St. Paul to the Galatians with the poignant words: 'Christ have redeemed us from the curse law, being made a curse for us: for it is written: Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Christ Jesus; that we may receive the promise of the Spirit by faith.' The second lesson is from the Epistle to the Philippians with the passage so familiar from the Triduum. The third lesson from the Epistle to the Colossians but, unlike in modern editions, is taken from the first chapter Videte ne quis ... in semetipso. In the second nocturn the antiphon Felix ille triumphus etc is sung with Pss. 4, 5 and 8. The lessons relate the work of St. Helena in fourth century Jerusalem finding three crosses buried in a cistern. Not knowing which cross the LORD had died on each was placed on a woman with a sickness by Macarius, Bishop of Jerusalem. When touched by the True Cross the sick woman was instantly restored to health. The lessons are the same as in modern editions. In the third nocturn Pss. 95, 96 and 97 are sung under the antiphon Adoramus te Christe etc, the lessons are from a homily of St. Augustine on the Gospel of St. John. The seventh lesson included the first sentence from the eighth lesson found in modern editions. The eighth begins Respondit Jesus and is several sentences longer. The ninth lesson is made of the three lessons of the homily for the Sunday within the Octave of the Ascension.

At Lauds the antiphons Helena, Constantini mater etc are sung with the Dominical psalms (92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-149-150). The antiphon on the Benedictus is Helena sancta dixit ad Judam etc (again not found in the modern editions). Commemorations are sung of the Sunday within the Octave and SS Alexander and Companions.

At the Hours the Ascension Doxology is sung with all the Office hymns, the antiphons of Lauds are sung with the Dominical psalms, at Prime the festal psalms are sung (Pss. 53, 118i & 118ii), the short lesson is Humiliavit semetipsum.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Sunday within the Octave, the third collect is of SS Alexander and Companions. The Creed is sung, the preface of the Cross is sung, the last Gospel is of the Sunday within the Octave.

Vespers are second Vespers of the feast of the Invention of the Holy Cross with the antiphons Helena, Constantini mater etc and psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. Commemorations are sung of the following Office of St. Monica, the Sunday within the Octave of the Ascension and SS Alexander and Companions.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

April 26th - Fifth Sunday after Pascha


The fifth Sunday after Pascha is of semi-double rite. The Gospel pericopes from St. John describe how the LORD tells His disciples to ask for anything in His name after He has ascended to the Father.

At Second Vespers of St. Mark yesterday afternoon the antiphons Sancti tui Domine etc were sung with psalms 109, 112, 115, 125 & 138. A commemoration was sung of the Sunday. At Compline the Dominical preces were omitted due to the occurring double feasts. Te lucis was sung with the Paschal Doxology. The feast of SS Cletus and Marcellinus is transferred to Monday.

At Mattins the invitatory and hymn are sung as previous Sundays of Paschaltide. Again, at the nocturns the psalms are sung under one antiphon. In the first nocturn (Pss. 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14) the lessons are the Incipit of the first Epistle of St. Peter. The lessons are the same as in 'modern' recensions. In the second nocturn (Pss. 15, 16 & 17) the lessons are taken from the book of St. Ambrose on faith in the Resurrection. These too are the same as in modern recensions. In the third nocturn (Pss. 18, 19 & 20) the homily is from St. Augustine. The seventh lesson is longer than in modern recensions including Unde qui hoc... nomine non petit from the 'modern' eighth lesson (sharp eyed readers will notice the non). The eighth lesson runs Qui vero quod est de illo ... proculdubio tunc erit plenum, i.e. continuing into half of what is now the ninth lesson. The ninth lesson begins Quidquid ergo petitur and continues for several more sentences absent from the modern books. At Lauds the Sunday psalms (Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-49-150) are sung under a single antiphon, the nine-fold Alleluia. The Office hymn is Aurora lucis rutilat. The Commemoration of the Cross is sung after the collect of the Sunday. The antiphon for the Commemoration of the Cross at Lauds is Crucifixus surrexit a mortuis, et redemit nos, alleluia, alleluia.

At the Hours the psalms are sung under an antiphon consisting of a four-fold Alleluia. At Prime the Dominical psalms are sung (Pss. 53, 118i, 118ii and Quicumque) as are the Dominical preces. The Paschal Doxology is sung at the hymn of the Hours.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is Concede nos, the third collect Ecclesiae or for the pope. The Credo is sung, the preface is of Paschaltide.

Vespers are of the Sunday, with the psalms (109, 110, 111, 112 & 113) sung under a single antiphon, Alleluia. After the collect of the day a commemoration of the following, transferred, Office of SS Cletus and Marcellinus followed by the Commmemoration of the Cross with the antiphon Crucem santam subiit qui infernum confregit, accinctus est potentia, surrexit die teria, Alleluia. At Compline (Pss. 4, 30 vv 1-6, 90 & 133) the Dominical preces are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 2 May 2010

April 19th - Fourth Sunday after Pascha


The fourth Sunday after Pascha is of semidouble rite.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the psalms of Vespers for Saturday (Pss. 143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) were sung under a single antiphon, Alleluia. The chapter, Carissimi: Omne datum optimum etc etc, was proper to the Sunday, the Office hymn was Ad coenam Agni providi. The antiphon on the Magnificat : Vado ad eum etc. The Commemoration of the Cross was made after the collect of the Sunday. At Vespers the antiphon for the Commemoration is Crucem santam subiit qui infernum confregit, accinctus est potentia, surrexit die teria, Alleluia. The V & R, Dicite in nationibus, Alleluia and Quia Dominus regnavit a ligno, Alleluia and the collect Deus, qui pro nobis Filium tuum crucis patibulum is sung at both Vespers and Lauds when the Office if of semi-double rite or below from the Monday after Dominica in Albis. At Compline (Pss. 4, 30 vv 1-6, 90, 133) Te lucis was sung to the Paschal tone with the Doxology Gloria tibi Dominie etc and the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory and hymn are sung as previous Sundays of Paschaltide. Again, at the nocturns the psalms are sung under one antiphon. In the first nocturn (Pss. 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14) the lessons are the Incipit of the Epistle of St. James. The lessons are the same as in 'modern' recensions. In the second nocturn (Pss. 15, 16 & 17) the lessons are taken from the Treatise of St. Cyprian on the boon of patience. These too are the same as in modern recensions. In the third nocturn (Pss. 18, 19 & 20) the homily is from St. Augustine, again the same as in modern recensions. At Lauds the Sunday psalms (Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-49-150) are sung under a single antiphon, the nine-fold Alleluia. The Office hymn is Aurora lucis rutilat. The Commemoration of the Cross is sung after the collect of the Sunday. The antiphon for the Commemoration of the Cross at Lauds is Crucifixus surrexit a mortuis, et redemit nos, alleluia, alleluia.

At the Hours the psalms are sung under an antiphon consisting of a four-fold Alleluia. At Prime the Dominical psalms are sung (Pss. 53, 118i, 118ii and Quicumque) as are the Dominical preces.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is Concede nos, the third collect Ecclesiae or for the pope. The Credo is sung, the preface is of Paschaltide.

Vespers are of the Sunday, with the psalms (109, 110, 111, 112 & 113) sung under a single antiphon, Alleluia. After the collect of the day the Commmemoration of the Cross is sung with the antiphon Crucem santam subiit qui infernum confregit, accinctus est potentia, surrexit die teria, Alleluia. At Compline (Pss. 4, 30 vv 1-6, 90 & 133) the Dominical preces are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal