Sunday, 14 February 2010

February 1st - Quinquagesima Sunday

Quinquagesima Sunday is a semi-double. The Epistle consists of perhaps one of the most famous pericopes in the NT, St. Paul's discourse to the Corinthians on faith, hope and charity. The Gospel from St. Luke has the story of the granting of sight to the man born blind.

At Vespers yesterday the antiphons and psalms were of Saturday, the chapter, antiphon at the Magnificat and collect proper to Quinquagesima Sunday. The Suffrages were sung of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins, as for Septuagesima Sunday, the invitatorium is Praeoccupemus and the hymn Primo dierum. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung. The lessons from Genesis are the beginning of the story of Abraham. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from St. Ambrose on the Patriarch Abraham. The fifth lesson is slightly shorter than in modern editions: Sed ideo addidit...Sequere Deum. The sixth lesson begins at the preceding verse to modern editions, Facto praevenit... In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are a homily from St. Gregory on the Gospel. The ninth responsory, Caecus sedebat, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to Quinquagesima Sunday and sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The versicle after the hymn Aeterne, chapter, antiphon at the Benedictus and collect are proper to the Sunday. The Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Gloriosi principes etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc are sung.

At Prime the order of psalmody is Pss. 53, 92, 118(i), 118(ii) and Quicumque, the 'Athanasian' Creed. The Dominical preces are sung. At all the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper.

In Mass there is no Gloria, the second collect is Deus, qui salutis, the third Ecclesiae or for the pope. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the Common Preface is sung. Following the general rule as the Gloria is not sung Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal. The ministers wear violet dalmatic and tunicle and the organ may be played.

Vespers are first Vespers of the Purification of the BVM (Candlemass). The antiphons from the Circumcision, O admirabile commercium etc, are sung with the psalms of the BVM. A commemorations is ssung of the Sunday. At Compline (Pss. 4, 30 vv 1-6, 90, 133) the Dominical preces are not sung because of the double feast. Te lucis is sung to the melody for feast of the BVM and has the Doxology Gloria tibi Domine etc.

The semi-double feast of St. Igatius of Antioch is transferred to Tuesday. After tomorrow's celebration of the satellite feast of the Nativity the Christmas decorations come down followed the start of Lent on Wednesday. In the Byzantine liturgy today is a rare example where a feast is anticipated. Candlemass is celebrated today as tomorrow is 'Clean Monday', the beginning of Great Lent.

Art: Jerome Nadal

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