Sunday, 9 May 2021

April 26th - Dominica in Albis - Low Sunday


Dominica in Albis or Low Sunday is of double rite and its litugical colour is white. The Gospel at Mattins and Mass is the account of the LORD appearing in to His disciples behind the shut doors of the room and the doubting of St. Thomas. The Greater Litanies were celebrated yesterday but the feast of St. Mark is transferred to Monday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the psalms of Saturday (Pss. 143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) were sung under the single antiphon, Alleluia. Chapters and hymns returned to the Office with this service, the Octave having ended with None. The Paschaltide hymn Ad cenam Agni providi was sung. Its Doxology is sung at all hymns of Iambic metre: Gloria tibi Domine, Qui surrexisti a mortuis, Cum Patre et Sancto Spiritu, In sempiterna saecula. After the collect of the Sunday the Paschal Suffrage was omitted. From this Office of Vespers, the dismissal, Benedicamus Domino, is sung without the double Alleluia that had been sung since Pascha. At Compline Te lucis is sung to the Paschal tone with the Doxology Gloria tibi Domine etc. This Doxology is sung with all hymns of Iambic metre until the Ascension. The Dominical preces are omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory Surrexit Dominus vere Alleluia continues to be sung. The Office hymn is O Rex aeterne Domine. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung under the single antiphon Alleluia, Lapis revolutus etc. The lessons in the first nocturn are from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Colossians; the first begins Igitur si consurrexistis otherwise it and the other two first nocturn lessons are the same as in the post-Clementine editions. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung under the single antiphon Alleluia, quem quaeris mulier etc. The lessons are from a sermon of St. Augustine and are the same as in the modern editions. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung under the single antiphon Alleluia, noli flere Maria etc. The homily is from the writings of St. Gregory on St. John's Gospel and the same same as in modern editions except they are missing the words 'Dixit eis' at the beginning of the ninth lesson. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the first group of Sunday psalms, 92, 99 & 62-66, are sung under a single antiphon, a nine-fold Alleluia - an ancient feature of the Roman rite that would be destroyed in the 1911-13 reform. The Office hymn is Aurora lucis rutilat.

At Prime the Dominical psalms 53, 118(i), 118(ii) and Quicumque are sung under the antiphon Alleluia. The Dominical preces are omitted. At the other Little Hours Alleluia is also sung as the antiphon, the hymns have the Paschal Doxology.

Mass is sung after Terce. Before Mass the antiphon Vidi aquam is sung during the aspersion. At Mass the Gloria is sung. There is a single collect. The Creed is sung and the preface is of Paschaltide.

At Vespers there is a colour change to red and first Vespers of the transferred feast of St. Mark the Apostle are sung. The antiphons Sancti tui etc, from the Common of Evangelists in Paschaltide, are sung with Pss. 19, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The Office hymn is Tristes erant Apostoli, sung with the Paschal Doxology. After the collect of the feast a commemoration of the Sunday is sung. The Paschal Suffrage is omitted. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

Sunday, 2 May 2021

April 19th - Dominica Resurrectionis - Easter Sunday - Pascha


The Sunday of the Resurrection is the Queen of Feasts and the most important of all liturgical celebrations and is of double rite with an Octave.

At the final stages of the Vesperal Liturgy of Holy Saturday yesterday morning an antiphon consisting of a triple Alleluia was sung, doubled, with psalm 116. The antiphon on the Magnificat was Vespere autem sabbati etc. After the Vesperal Liturgy the traditional blessing of houses takes place and, in some countries, the Paschal food.  In the evening of Holy Saturday Compline was sung, at the normal time. On Holy Saturday the Office of Compline has some interesting variations. Compline begins with the usual Jube, domne, blessing, short lesson and confession. Converte nos, Deus, salutaris noster and its response are sung followed by Deus in adjutorium etc with Alleluia for the first time since Septuagesima. The psalms are sung, without an antiphon, to the usual Tone 8. The hymn, chapter and responsory are omitted and Vespere autem sabbati sung as the antiphon fragment to the Nunc dimittis. After the Canticle the antiphon is sung in full. After the usual collect, Visita quaesumus, the antiphon Regina Caeli is sung with its versicle and collect.

The church is decorated for the greatest of feasts. Before Mattins the images that have been veiled from Passiontide (or from the beginning of Lent where Array was used) are removed. Six candlesticks are on the altar. Mattins begin with the solemn tone for Deus in adjutorium etc. The invitatory is Surrexit Dominus vere Alleluia and psalm 94 is sung to a lovely tone 6 setting. Mattins consists of a single nocturn of three psalms. There is no Office Hymn throughout the Octave (c.f. Monastic praxis). The first antiphon is Ego sum qui sum etc and sung, doubled, with psalm 1. The second antiphon, Postulavi Patrem meum etc, is sung with psalm 2. The third antiphon, Ego dormivi etc, is sung with psalm 3. A versicle and its response are sung followed by the absolution Exaudi etc. The first lesson has the Gospel fragment Mark 16: 1-7 and is followed by a homily of St. Gregory the Great. The two responsories Angelus Domini descendit and Cum transisset sabbatum are famous and intimately connected with the Quem quaeritis ceremonies. The second lesson, Notandum vero nobis est is sung followed by the second responsory. The lessons are identical to those found in the later editions. During the second responsory the cantors and the celebrant don copes and the principal cantor pre-intones the Te Deum. Six pluvialistae assist the Hebdomadarius where possible. The Te Deum is then sung and, where it is the custom the bells ring throughout.

Lauds follow immediately and have a series of beautiful antiphons: Angelus autem Domini, Et ecce terraemotus, Erat autem, Prae timore autem ejus and Respondens autem Angelus all taking up the theme of the Angels, earthquake and empty tomb. Psalms 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-149-150 are sung with these antiphons. The chapter, hymn, versicle and response are replaced by the Haec dies. After Haec dies the antiphon Et valde mane is sung and then the Benedictus sung to a solemn tone 8. During the Benedictus the altar, the choir and people are censed in the normal manner. The antiphon is repeated and the collect of Easter, Deus, qui hodierna die sung. Benedicamus Domino, Alleluia, Alleluia and its response are followed by the solemn Regina Caeli, its versicle and collect.

At Prime and the Hours the usual festal psalms are sung but without antiphons. Haec dies replaces the chapter, responsories etc. At Prime the Martyrology is read again, having not been read for the days of the Triduum. Before the announcement of the following day and moon "Hac die quam fecit Dominus, Solemnitas solemnitatum, et Pascha nostrum Resurrectio Salvatoris nostri Jesu Christi secundum carnem" is sung to the tone of the Passion.

Mass is sung after Terce. Vidi aquam replaces the Asperges during Paschaltide. At Mass the Gloria is sung, the Creed is sung, the preface, communicantes and Hanc igitur are proper. Ite, missa est with a double Alleluia is the dismissal.

At Vespers the antiphons Angelus autem Domini etc are sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 and 113. Again Haec dies replaces the chapter and hymn. The antiphon on the Magnificat is Et respicientes etc. At Compline the usual psalms are sung with a three or four-fold Alleluia after them (BR1568 editio princeps gives a triple Alleluia, BR1579 Antwerp and post-Clementine editions give four ). Then the Nunc dimittis is sung followed by Haec dies and the collect Visita quaesumus.

Sunday, 25 April 2021

April 12th - Dominica in Palmis - Palm Sunday


Palm Sunday is a privileged semi-double Sunday. It is the sixth and last Sunday in Lent and the beginning of Great or Holy Week. The liturgical colour, from Mattins this year, is violet. The magnificent ceremonies for the solemn blessing of the Palms, which follows a similar structure to the Blessing of the Waters at Epiphany, make it, arguably, the finest jewel in the crown of the liturgical year.

At Vespers yesterday morning second Vespers of the feast of St. Leo were sung. The antiphons Ecce sacerdos magnus etc were sung, doubled, with Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 131. After the collect of the feast a commemoration of the Sunday was sung. The Suffrages were omitted.

At Mattins, as last week and daily until the Triduum, the invitatory is Hodie, si vocem Domini audieritis, Nolite obdurare corda vestra from Ps. 94 and a special rubric indicates the omission of that verse in the psalm. The Office hymn is Pange, lingua. The antiphons given in the Psalter for Sundays are used. As usual Mattins has three nocturns and nine lessons. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung. The lessons in the first nocturn are from the book of Jeremiah. These are the same, as are their responsories, as those found in the post-Clement editions of the Breviary. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 and 17 are sung and the lessons are from a sermon on the Passion by St. Leo. The fifth lesson begins with the words Qui ut humanum genus and incorportates what is now the sixth lesson from Fefellit ergo illum.. until famulatae sunt Redemptori. The sixth lesson, Quod ergo...justitiae esse propositum is not found in the later editions of the Breviary. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are a homily of St. Ambrose, their arrangement is slightly different to that found in the modern books. The Te Deum is omitted as on other Lenten Sundays and a ninth responsory, Circumderunt me viri mendaces..., sung in its place.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to Palm Sunday, Dominus Deusetc, and sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The hymn is Lustra sex. The versicle after the hymn Eripe me, chapter, antiphon on the Benedictus and collect are proper to the Sunday.

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

After Terce the Asperges takes place as usual (the Lesser Doxology being omitted) and is followed by the magnificent Blessing and Procession of Palms. The ministers wear violet folded chasubles. After the Asperges the celebrant and ministers proceed to the Epistle corner and begin the solemn blessing of Palms whilst the choir sing the antiphon Hosanna filio David, O Rex Israel etc. The rubrics give a direction that the Palms to be blessed at the Epistle side.  The blessing begins with the celebrant reading the antiphon Hosanna filio David followed by a collect Deus, quim diligere and then the reading of an Epistle and Gospel. The normal ceremonies of High Mass are followed. The subdeacon removes his folded chasuble to sing the Epistle taken from the Book of Exodus. Following the Epistle two texts are given, Collegerunt pontifices and In monte Oliveti (the latter will appear again as a responsory during the Triduum) to be sung as a 'gradual', both may be sung.  Following the Gospel the deacon resumes his folded chasuble and the collect Auge fidem is sung followed by a preface, Sanctus and four further collects Deus, qui dispersa, Deus, qui miro, Deus, qui per olivae and Benedic quaesumus. The presence of a preface is indicative of the solemn blessing (c.f. the great blessing of waters at Epiphany). The collect Deus, qui miro is a didactic masterpiece. Readers will note the strong correlation between the text of the collect and of the second lesson of Mattins for the Saturday before Palm Sunday from St. Augustine:
O God, who, by the wonderful order of Thy disposition, hast been pleased to manifest the dispensation of our salvation even from things insensible: grant, we beseech Thee, that the devout hearts of Thy faithful may understand to their benefit what is mystically signified by the fact that on this day the multitude, taught by a heavenly illumination, went forth to meet their Redeemer, and strewed branches of palms and olive at His feet. The branches of palms, therefore, represent His triumphs over the prince of death; and the branches of olive proclaim, in a manner, the coming of a spiritual unction. For that pious multitude understood that these things were then prefigured; that our Redeemer, compassionating human miseries, was about to fight with the prince of death for the life of the whole world, and, by dying, to triumph. For which cause they dutifully ministered such things as signified in Him the triumphs of victory and the richness of mercy. And we also, with full faith, retaining this as done and signified, humbly beseech Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God, through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, that in Him and through Him, whose members Thou hast been pleased to make us, we may become victorious over the empire of death, and may deserve to be partakers of His glorious Resurrection.

The celebrant then puts on incense and blesses it. The Palms are then aspersed with lustral water, the celebrant saying in a low voice Asperges me etc, and then censed. Another collect, Deus, qui Filium is then sung. The celebrant then receives his Palm from the senior canon present. If no other priest is present the celebrant kneels and takes the Palm from the of the altar, kisses it then passes it to the subdeacon who places it again on the mensa. The celebrant then gives Palms to the deacon and subdeacon and other ministers and then the people. The Palm is kissed first and then the celebrant's hand. During the distribution the antiphons Pueri Hebraeorum and Pueri Hebraeorum vestimenta are sung. After the distribution the celebrant and ministers go back to the altar, bow to the Cross and then go to the Epistle corner where the celebrant's hands are washed. Then, having returned to the missal, he sings the collect Omnipotens sempiterne.

Whilst the celebrant's hands are washed after the distribution of Palms the Processional Cross is decorated with the blessed Palms. A Procession is then formed, led by the thurifer, followed by the subdeacon (of the Mass, not this day an additional subdeacon) bearing the Processional Cross. The deacon sings Procedamus in pace and the following antiphons are sung during the Procession Cum appropinquaret, Cum audisset, Ante sex dies, Occurrunt turbae, Cum angelis et pueris and Turba multa.  Ideally, the Procession goes outside and around the church. Often circumstances dictate the Procession must simply go around the aisles of the church. Towards he end of the Procession cantors re-enter the church and the door is closed. The beautiful hymn of Theodolph Gloria, laus, et honor is then sung in alternation between the cantors inside the church and everyone else outside. At the end of the hymn the subdeacon strikes the church door three times with the foot of the Processional Cross and the party re-enters the church to the singing of Ingrediente Domino.

Mass then follows the usual manner. The celebrant removes his cope and dons his chasuble. The preparatory prayers are said but the psalm Judica me is omitted in Passiontide. The introit is Domine, ne longe etc. There is no Gloria. No commemoration is made of an occuring Office on Palm Sunday so there is only one collect. Psalm 21 is sung in its entirety as a Tract. The major difference from any other Sunday is singing of the Passion according to St. Matthew by three additional deacons of the Passion. The text of the Passion is Matthew 26: 1-75; 27: 1-66. After the singing of the Passion the last part, Altera autem die...lapidem cum custodibus, is sung with the ceremonies of a Gospel by the deacon of the Mass (having removed his folded chasuble etc).  The choir and people hold their Palms during the singing of the Passion. The Creed is sung, the preface is of the Cross and the dismissal is Benedicamus Domino sung by the deacon facing the celebrant and altar.

Vespers are of the Sunday and the Office hymn is Vexilla regis. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung. The additional Offices of the Little Office of the BVM, the Office of the Dead, the Gradual Psalms and the Penitential Psalms and Litany are omitted in Great Week.

Sunday, 18 April 2021

April 5th - Passion Sunday


Passion Sunday is the fifth and penultimate Sunday in Lent. It is a semi-double Sunday and its liturgical colour is violet. After Mass, and before Vespers, on Saturday morning all images and crosses are veiled in violet, according to the Roman praxis. The veils on the crosses are removed during the Adoration of the Cross on Good Friday morning, those on the images of the saints remain until after the Office of Holy Saturday is ended.

At Vespers, yesterday morning, the antiphons of Saturday, Benedictus etc., were sung with psalms 143, 144, 145, 146 and 147. The chapter, Fratres: Christus assistens Pontifex, was proper to the Sunday, taken from Hebrews. The Office hymn was Vexilla regis. From this Vespers until Trinity the Suffrages are omitted. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung. The Lesser Doxology was omitted in the short responsory.

At Mattins the invitatory is Hodie, si vocem Domini audieritis, Nolite obdurare corda vestra from Ps. 94 and a special rubric indicates the omission of that verse in the psalm. The Lesser Doxology is omitted from Venite for Passiontide in Offices of the Season. The Office hymn is Pange, lingua. The same invitatory and hymn are sung until Spy Wednesday inclusive. The antiphons given in the Psalter for Sundays are sung. As usual Mattins has three nocturns and nine lessons. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung. The psalms retain the Lesser Doxology (until the Triduum) but the third reponsories of each nocturn lose it for Passiontide. The lessons in the first nocturn are the the Incipit of the book of Jeremiah. These are substantially longer than in the modern editions of the Breviary. The first lesson runs from Verba Hieremiae until verse 10, ... et aedifices, et plantes. The second lesson runs from verse 11, Et factum est verbum Domini to verse 16, ...et adoraverunt opus manuum suarum. The third lesson begins with verse 17, Tu ergo accinge lumbos tuos.., and continues until verse 3 of the second chapter, ... mala venient super eos, dicit Dominus. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 and 17 are sung and the lessons are from a sermon by St. Leo. These again are longer than those found in the modern editions. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are a homily of St. Gregory, again slightly longer than in the modern books. The Te Deum is omitted as on other Lenten Sundays and a ninth responsory, Quis dabit capiti meo aquam etc, sung in its place.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to Passion Sunday, Vide Domine etc, and sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The office hymn is Lustra sex. The versicle after the hymn Eripe me, chapter, antiphon on the Benedictus and collect are proper to the Sunday. The Suffrages are not sung in Passiontide.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons are proper, Ego daemonium etc. 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 chapters are proper. The Lesser Doxology is omitted from the short responsory at Prime and at those of the other Horae Minores.

Mass is sung after Terce. The ministers wear folded chasubles. In Mass there is no Gloria, the second collect is Ecclesiae, for the Church or Deus omnium, for the Pope. There is no third collect in Passiontide. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the preface of the Cross is sung. Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal by the deacon facing the celebrant and altar.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms (109, 110, 111, 112 & 113) of Sunday are sung. The Office hymn is Vexilla regis. The Suffrages are omitted. After Benedicamus Domino and its response Vespers of the Dead are sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted. After Mattins and Lauds of Monday Mattins and Lauds of the Dead are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 11 April 2021

March 29th - Fourth Sunday in Lent

The fourth Sunday in Lent is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is violet (no sign of rose). The Gospel pericopes from St. John describe the multiplication miracle of the five barley loaves and two fishes to feed the Five Thousand.

At Vespers, yesterday morning, the antiphons and psalms (143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) of Saturday were sung, the chapter was proper to the Sunday. The Lenten hymn Audi benigne conditor was sung. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc were sung. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory is Non sit vobis and the hymn is Ex more. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the third chapter of the Book of Exdodus and the story of Moses and the Burning Bush. The second lesson includes part of what is now the third lesson in modern editions: Dixitque Moyses ad Deum...immolabis Deo super montem istum. The third lesson begins Ait Moyses ad Deum and continues with the addition of verses 16 through to 19. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from St. Basil and are longer than in modern editions. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are a homily of St. Augustine, again slightly longer than in the modern books. The Te Deum is omitted and in its place a ninth responsory, Attendite, popule meus etc., is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons, Tunc acceptabis etc., are proper to the Fourth Sunday and are sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Jam Christe sol justitiae. After the collect of 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 the 'Little Hours' the antiphons, Accepit ergo etc., are sung. At Prime the order of psalmody is Pss. 53, 92, 118(i), 118(ii) and Quicumque. The Dominical preces are sung.

At Mass today the ministers wear violet dalmatic and tunicle rather than folded chasubles. There is no Gloria, the second collect is A cunctis nos, the third collect is Omnipotens. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the preface of Lent is sung. Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal by the deacon facing the altar.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms of Sunday are sung. The chapter is proper to the Sunday and the Office hymn is Ad preces nostras deitatis aures. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc are sung. (St. Patrick, although appearing in earlier calendars was a victim of the general purge of feasts from the 1568-70 books.) After Benedicamus Domino and its response in Vespers of the Sunday Vespers of the Dead are sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 4 April 2021

March 22nd - Third Sunday in Lent


The third Sunday in Lent is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour, from Mattins this year, is violet. The Gospel pericopes from St. Luke recount the LORD casting out evil from a demoniac. The semi-double feast of the Forty Martyrs of Sebaste is transferred to Monday.

Yesterday morning second Vespers for the feast of St. Benedict were sung. The antiphons Domine, quinque talenta etc. were sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The chapter was Beatus vir, and the Office hymn was Iste confessor. After the collect of the feast a commemoration of the Sunday was sung. At Compline the Dominical preceswere omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is Non sit vobis and the Office hymn is Ex more. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the Book of Genesis and the story of Joseph. The first lesson includes the first sentence of the second lesson in modern editions: Invidebant...considerabat. The second lesson is longer than in modern editions and includes the text from the modern third lesson Audiens autem...et reddere patri suo. The third lesson begins Confestim igitur and continues until the end of verse 34 rather than verse 28. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from St. Ambrose on Joseph. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are a homily from the Venerable Bede.

At Lauds the antiphons, Fac benigne etc., are proper to the Sunday and sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Jam Christe sol justitiae. The chapter, antiphon at the Benedictus and collect are proper to the Sunday. After the collect of 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 Dominical preces are sung. At all the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper.

At Mass the ministers wear violet folded chasubles. There is no Gloria, the second collect is A cunctis nos, the third collect is Omnipotens. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the preface of Lent is sung. Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal and the ministers wear violet folded chasubles in place of dalmatic and tunicle.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms of Sunday are sung. The chapter is proper to the Sunday and the Office hymn is Ad preces nostras deitatis aures. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc are sung. After Benedicamus Domino and its response in Vespers of the Sunday Vespers of the Dead are sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung. Mattins and Lauds of the Dead are sung after Mattins and Lauds of Monday.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 28 March 2021

March 15th - Second Sunday in Lent

The second Sunday in Lent is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is violet. No feast can take precedence over it, or any such a Sunday, in occurrence. The Gospel pericopes are St. Matthew's account of the LORD's Transfiguration.

At Vespers, yesterday morning, the antiphons and psalms (143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) of Saturday were sung. The chapter was proper to the Sunday and the Office hymn was Audi, benigne conditor. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc were sung. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory is Non sit vobis and the Office hymn is Ex more. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the twenty-seventh chapter of the Book of Genesis. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from St. Augustine's Book against Liars. The fourth lesson is several sentences longer than the lesson found in more modern editions. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are from a homily from St. Leo on the Gospel. The eighth lesson contains part of the text of the modern ninth lesson and the ninth lesson contains more text than that found in the modern editions. In place of the Te Deum a ninth responsory is sung, Cum audisset Jacob.

At Lauds the antiphons, Domine labia mea aperies etc., are proper to the Sunday and are sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite & 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Jam Christe sol justitiae. The versicle after the hymn Angelis suis, chapter, antiphon on the Benedictus and collect are proper to the Sunday (the versicle and its response being used throughout Lent). After the collect of 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 and the Hours the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Domine bonum est etc. At Prime the order of psalmody is Pss. 53, 92, 118i, 118ii and Quicumque. The Dominical preces are sung. At all the Hours the antiphons, as noted, and chapters are proper.

At Mass the ministers wear folded chasubles. There is no Gloria, the second collect is A cunctis, the third collect is Omnipotens. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the preface of Lent is sung. The dismissal is Benedicamus Domino sung by the deacon facing the altar and celebrant.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms are of Sunday (109, 110, 111, 112 & 113). The chapter is proper to the Sunday and the Office hymn is Ad preces nostras deitatis aures. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc are sung. After Benedicamus Domino and its response Vespers of the Dead are sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung. After Mattins and Lauds of Monday are sung Mattins and Lauds of the Dead follow.

Art: Mosaic of the Transfiguration, St. Catherine's Monastery Sinai, Wikipedia.

Sunday, 21 March 2021

March 8th - First Sunday in Lent



The first Sunday in Lent is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour, from Mattins, is violet. No feast can take precedence in occurence over it or any such Sunday. The Gospel pericopes at Mattins and Mass are St. Matthew's account of the LORD's temptation by Satan in the desert.

Vespers, yesterday morning, were second Vespers of the double feast of St. Thomas Aquinas. The antiphons Domine quinque talenta etc, taken from the Common of Confessor non-Pontiffs, were sung doubled with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 11. The chapter was Beatus vir and the hymn Iste Confessor. After the collect of the feast a commemoration of the Sunday was sung. The Suffrage was omitted as were the Dominical preces at Compline.

At Mattins the invitatory is Non sit vobis and the Office hymn is Ex more. These are both used throughout the first four weeks of Lent. In the first nocturn psalms 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 are sung and the lessons are from the Second Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. The second lesson is longer than that found in modern versions of the Breviary with the addition of Propter quod...Dominus omnipotens, vv. 17 & 18. The third lesson is also longer, beginning at the first verse of Ch. 7 with Has ergo habentes...pro vobis preceding the text found in modern editions which begin at the fourth verse. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from St. Leo and again give more of his sermon than found in modern editions. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are a homily from St. Gregory on the Gospel. Yet again the text found in the Tridentine Breviary is truncated in later editions. A ninth responsory, Angelis suis Deus mandavit de te, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to Quadragesima Sunday, Cor mundum crea in me Deus etc., and are sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Jam Christe sol justitiae. The versicle after the hymn Angelis suis, chapter, antiphon at the Benedictus and collect are proper to the Sunday (this same versicle and its response being used throughout Lent). After the collect of 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 Dominical preces are sung. At all the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper.

At Mass the ministers wear violet folded chasubles, there is no Gloria, the second collect is A cunctis nos, the third collect is Omnipotens. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the preface of Lent is sung. Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal by the deacon facing the altar.

Vespers are of the Sunday. The antiphons and psalms (109, 110, 111, 112 & 113) of Sunday are sung. The Office hymn is the beautiful Ad preces nostras Deitatis aures. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is sung of the following feast of the SS Forty Martyrs followed by the Suffrages 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 are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Wednesday, 17 March 2021

March 4th - Ash Wednesday


Ash Wednesday is a privileged greater ferial day. No feast can be celebrated on this day whatever its rank. The day marks the beginning of Lent although the Office hymns are those that have been sung during the season of Septuagesima. Lentent hymns are sung from the the first Sunday in Lent. The liturgical colour of the day is violet.

The Office of Ash Wednesday began yesterday evening with the chanting in Quire of the Gradual Psalms before Mattins of the day. The fifteen Gradual Psalms are divided into three sections. The choir chants Pss. 119, 120, 121 & 122 without any antiphon and without the Doxology at the end of any of them. Psalm 123 follows and after its last verse Requiem aeternam etc and the respond Et lux perpetua etc are sung. Then the choir kneels and the Hebdomadarius intones Pater noster and all then say the prayer secreto. A short series of versicles and their responses follow and the collect Absolve, quaesumus Domine etc. The choir stands and Pss. 124, 125, 126, 127 & 128 are chanted without antiphon but with the Doxology at the end of each psalm. After the last Doxology the choir again kneels for a short series of versicles and their responses and the collect Deus, cui proprium etc. The choir rises and chant Pss. 129, 130, 131, 132 & 133, again without any antiphon but with the Doxology at the end of each. For a third time the choir then kneels for a series of versicles and their responses and the collect Praetende Domine etc. The Office of Mattins then follows.

The invitatory is In manu tua Domine, Omnes fines terrae and the Office hymn is Rerum Creator optime both from the ferial Office per annum for Wednesday. In the nocturn the twelve psalms 52, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 63, 65 & 67 are sung in pairs under the six antiphons Avertit Dominus etc. The lessons in the nocturn are from a homily of St. Augustine reflecting on the Sermon on the Mount from St. Matthew's Gospel. The second and third lessons are slightly longer than those found in the modern editions of the Breviary. The responsories are taken from the third nocturn of Quinquagesima Sunday. The Te Deum is not sung but its place the third responsory, Movens Abram etc

At Lauds the psalmody is ferial, Pss. 50, 64, 62-66, Canticle of Anna, 148, 149 & 150. The antiphon on the Benedictus and collect are proper to the day. Before the collect the choir kneels and the ferial preces are sung with the psalm De profundis. After the collect of the day the Suffrages of the Cross Per signum Crucis etc (the Office being ferial), 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 the Hours the ferial antiphons are sung. At Prime the psalmody is Pss. 53, 25, 118i and 118ii. Both the Dominical and ferial preces are chanted kneeling, the chapter is the ferial Pacem et veritatem. At the other Hours the short set of ferial preces are chanted with the choir kneeling.

The blessing of Ashes and Mass follows after the singing of None. (Where the Expulsion of Penitents takes place the Ashes are blessed and imposed on the Pentitents followed by the Seven Penitential Psalms and Litany and the Expulsion of the Penitents.) The celebrant vests in a violet cope with the deacon and subdeacon wearing violet folded chasubles. The organ is silent following the general rule when folded chasubles are worn. The Ashes, made from the preceding year's Palms, are blessed with four collects of blessing. The short conclusion of these prayers probably indicates the blessing was separated by the Expulsion of Penitents from the Mass which follows. The Ashes are imposed whilst two antiphons are chanted Immutemur habitu and Inter vestibulum. These are followed by the poignant responsory Emendemus in melius. The Mass that now immediately follows is proper. The Gloria is not sung. The second collect is A cunctis, the third collect Omnipotens. The preface of Lent is sung. The ferial tones are used for the orations, preface and Pater noster. The choir kneels for the Orations and from the Sanctus until Pax Domini. After the last collect the deacon sings Humiliate capita vestra Deo and the celebrant sings the Oratio super populum. The dismissal is Benedicamus Domino, sung by the deacon facing the celebrant and altar.

Vespers are of the feria. The antiphons Non confundetur etc are sung with psalms 126, 127, 128, 129 & 130. The Office hymn is Caeli Deus sanctissimae. The antiphon on the Magnificat and the collect are proper to Ash Wednesday. Before the collect those in Quire kneel and the ferial preces, with the Miserere, are sung. After the collect of the day the Suffrages of the Cross Per signum Crucis etc, of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc. If the choir has sung the Officium Parvum prior to Vespers of the day the Suffrage of the BVM is omitted. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung, the choir kneeling.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 14 March 2021

March 1st - Quinquagesima Sunday


Quinquagesima Sunday is of semi-double rite and it liturgical colour is violet. 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. This Sunday corresponds in the Byzantine rite to the Sunday of Forgiveness, or Cheesefare Sunday, the Sunday being the last day dairy products are eaten until Pascha.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms of Saturday (Pss. 143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) were sung. The Office hymn was O lux beata Trinitas. The chapter, antiphon on the Magnificat and collect were proper to Quinquagesima Sunday. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc were sung. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins, as for the previous Sundays, the invitatory is Praeoccupemus and the Office hymn is 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. These are the same as those in found in the post-Clementine editions of the Breviary. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from St. Ambrose on the Patriarch Abraham. The fifth lesson is, unusually, slightly shorter than in later 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 from a homily from St. Gregory on the Gospel. These are the same as those found in the later editions. The ninth responsory, Caecus sedebat, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to Quinquagesima Sunday, Secundum multitudinem etc., and are 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. After the collect of 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 Dominical preces are sung. At all the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper to the Sunday

In Mass the Gloria is omitted, the second collect is A cunctis nos, the third collect is chosen by the Dean or Rector of the place. 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 of the Sunday with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113. The Office hymn is Lucis Creator. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc are sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 7 March 2021

February 22nd - Sexagesima Sunday


Sexagesima Sunday is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is violet. The Gospel pericopes are from St. Luke and the parable of the sower with his seed landing on rock, amongst weeds and the good ground. In the Kalendar of the Byzantine rite Sexagesima corresponds to the Sunday of the Last Judgement or Meatfare Sunday, the last day on which meat is eaten until Pascha. The feast of St. Peter's Chair at Antioch is transferred to Monday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms for Saturday (Pss. 143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) were sung. The chapter was proper to Sexagesima, Fratres: Libenter suffertis and the Office hymn was O lux beata Trinitas. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine were sung. 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 continue to be taken from Genesis are read concerning the story of Noah. The lessons are longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions of the Breviary. The first continues Videns autem Deus ...me fecisse eos, i.e with most of the text of the modern second lesson. The second lesson begins Noe vero invenit ... and continues with all of the modern third lesson and the addition of verse 16: Fenestram in arca facies ... tristega facies in ea. The third lesson, the text of which is entirely absent from the modern books, begins Ecce ego ... and continues until Fecit igitur omnia quae praeceperat illi Deus, Gen. 6:17 - 22. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from St. Ambrose on Noah and the Ark. These are identical to those found in the modern edtions. In the third nocturn (Pss. 18, 19 & 20 the lessons are taken from a homily of St. Gregory. The eighth and ninth lessons are slightly longer than in the modern editions. A ninth responsory, Cum turba plurima, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Secundum magnam misericordiam etc., and are sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite, 148-149-150. The versicle after the hymn Aeterne, chapter, antiphon on the Benedictus and collect are all proper to the Sunday. After the collect of 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 Dominical preces are sung. At all the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper.

In Mass there is no Gloria, the second collect is A cunctis, the third collect is chosen by the Dean or Rector. 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 by the deacon facing the altar. The ministers wear violet dalmatic and tunicle.

At Vespers there is a colour change to white and first Vespers of the, transferred, feast of St. Peter's Chair at Antioch are sung. The antiphons Ecce sacerdos magnus etc are sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 131. The Office hymn is Quodcumque vinclis. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of St. Paul the Apostle and of the Sunday. The Suffrages are omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline.

Sunday, 28 February 2021

February 15th - Septuagesima Sunday


Septuagesima Sunday is of semi-double rank and its liturgical colour is violet. At Mattins the book of Genesis is begun with the account of the Creation. The Gospel pericopes from St. Matthew at Mattins and Mass contain the parable of the labourers in the vineyard.
The sixth Sunday after the Epiphany was anticipated yesterday.
 
At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms (143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) of Saturday were sung. The Office hymn was O lux beata Trinitas and the antiphon on the Magnificat was proper to the Sunday, Dixit Dominus etc. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration was sung of SS Faustinus & Jovita followed by the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace, Da pacem Domine. At the conclusion of Vespers to Benedicamus Domino and its response a double Alleluia is added and after that Alleluia is not heard again until Holy Saturday. At Compline and at the beginning of all the Hours until the Triduum Laus tibi Domine Rex aeterne gloriae is sung in place of Alleluia. The Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatorium is Praeoccupemus and the Office hymn is Primo dierum. In the first nocturn (Pss. 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14) the lessons are the Incipit of the Book of Genesis. These are the same as those found in modern editions. In the second nocturn psalms 15, 16 & 17 are sung, the lessons are from the Enchiridion of St. Augustine. These are substantially longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions and the sixth lesson is not found in the later books, the fifth lesson effectively having been divided into two. In the third nocturn psalms 18, 19 & 20 are sung and the lessons are from a homily of St. Gregory on the Gospel of the labourers in the vineyard. Again, these are longer than those found in the modern editions. The Te Deum is omitted and in its place a ninth responsory, Ubi est Abel frater tuus, is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Miserere mei Deus etc, and sung with Pss. 50, 117, 62-66, Benedicite and 148-149-150. The versicle after the hymn Aeterne rerum conditor, chapter, antiphon on the Benedictus and collect are proper to Septuagesima Sunday. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of SS Faustinus & Jovita is sung followed by the Suffrages of the BVM Santa Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Gloriosi principes etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace Da pacem Domine etc.

At the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper to the Sunday. At Prime the order of psalmody is changed from the usual order. Under the antiphon Conventione autem Pss. 53, 92, 118i, 118ii and Quicumque are sung. The Dominical preces are also sung.

Mass is sung after Terce. The ministers wear violet dalmatic and tunicle. The Gloria is omitted, the second collect is of SS Faustinus & Jovita, the third collect is A cunctis. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the Common Preface is sung. The dismissal is Benedicamus Domino , sung by the Deacon facing the altar.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms (Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113) of Sunday are sung, the chapter is proper to the Sunday as in the antiphon at the Magnificat. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace, Da pacem Domine are sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 21 February 2021

February 8th - Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany

The fifth Sunday after the Epiphany is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is green. The Gospel pericopes at Mattins and Mass are from St. Matthew and contain the parable of the cockle sown amongst the wheat.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms (143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) of Saturday were sung. The Office hymn was O lux beata Trinitas and the antiphon on the Magnificat is again Suscepit Deus. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace, Da pacem Domine were sung. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory is Adoremus Dominum and the hymn is Primo dierum omnium . 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 to Timothy. These are the same as those found in the post-Clementine editions of the Breviary except for the addition of ..illi, in vitam aeternam in the later editions. In the second nocturn, Pss. 15, 16 & 17, the lessons are taken from and exposition on the Apostle and are ascribed to St. Ambrose (wrongly?). These are substantially longer, and different, apart from the opening words of the fourth lesson to the sermon of St. Augustine found in modern editions. In the third nocturn, Pss. 18, 19 & 20, the homily is from St. Augustine on St. Matthew's Gospel. These lessons are the same as in the post-Clementine editions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the Sunday psalms (Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite 148-49-150) are sung. After the collect of 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 are sung.

At Prime (Pss. 117, 118i & 118ii) Quicumque is sung as are the Dominical preces.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is A cunctis, the third collect is chosen by the Dean or Rector. The Credo is sung and the Common Preface is sung.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms of Sunday (Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113) are sung. The Office hymn is Lucis creator. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of the following Office of St. Apollonia is sung followed by the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace, Da pacem Domine . At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 14 February 2021

February 1st - Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany


The fourth Sunday after the Epiphany is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour, until Vespers, is green. The Gospel at Mattins and Mass is from St. Matthew and is the account of the LORD stilling the storm at sea. The semi-double feast of St. Ignatius of Antioch is transferred to Tuesday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms (143, 144, 145, 146 & 147) of Saturday were sung. The Office hymn was O lux beata Trinitas and the antiphon on the Magnificat is again Suscepit Deus. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrages of the BVM Sancta Maria succurre etc, the Apostles Petrus Apostolus etc, of the Patron and lastly for peace, Da pacem Domine were sung. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory is Adoremus Dominum and the hymn is Primo dierum omnium . 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 to the Philippians. The first lesson is the same as in modern editions of the Breviary. The second lesson continues with what is now text of the third lesson: Quidam quidem et propter ... suscitare vinculis meis. The third lesson begins Quid enim? Dum omni modo... and continues with the addition of vv. 19 - 24, Scio enim, quia hoc mihi ... autem in carne necessarium propter vos. In the second nocturn, Pss. 15, 16 & 17, the lessons are taken from the Book of Morals of St. Gregory. These are virtually the same as in modern editions except that the sixth lesson is shorter by the omission of the final sentence found in modern editions Dissolvi enim ... vinctum videret. In the third nocturn, Pss. 18, 19 & 20, the homily is from St. Jerome on St. Matthew's Gospel. These lessons are the same as in the post-Clementine editions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the Sunday psalms (Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite 148-49-150) are sung. After the collect of 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 are sung.

At Prime (Pss. 117, 118i & 118ii) Quicumque is sung as are the Dominical preces.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is Deus, qui salutis, the third collect Ecclesiae etc. The Credo is sung and the Common Preface is sung.

At Vespers there is a colour change to white and first Vespers of the feast of the Purification are sung. The antiphons used on the feast of the Circumcision, O admirabile commercium etc., are sung, doubled, with the psalms of feasts for the Blessed Virgin (Pss. 109, 112, 121, 126 & 147). The chapter is proper to the feast and the Office hymn is Ave, maris stella. The antiphon on the Magnificat is proper to the feast Senex Puerum portabat etc. The Suffrages are omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline. At Compline the melody of Te lucis is that of the Incarnation with the Doxology Gloria tibi Domine etc.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 7 February 2021

January 25th - The Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle


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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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 again sung, doubled, 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 2021

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, doubled, 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.

Image: St. Peter's Basilica.

Sunday, 24 January 2021

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

Sunday, 17 January 2021

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. A peculiarity of the Calendar is that no commemoration of the Sunday is made in either the Office or Mass. The orations for the second Sunday after the Nativity of Christ are actually those found for the Vigil of the Epiphany with the ancient orations for the Vigil (the collect Corda nostra etc) being found in many sacramentaries and extant in the Dominican rite.

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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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.
Art: Giotto, Wikipedia

Sunday, 10 January 2021

December 28th - The Holy Innocents


The feast of the Holy Innocents is a double feast with an Octave. The liturgical colour of the day is red as the feast falls upon a Sunday this year. However, no commemoration of the Sunday within the Octave of the Nativity is made. Much of the Office comes from the Common of Several Martyrs.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons for the Nativity of the LORD, Tecum principium etc., were sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 129 and 131, from the chapter of St. John, the Office hymn was Exultet caelum laudibus. After the collect of the feast, of St. John, commemorations were sung of the following feast of the Holy Innocents, of the Octave of the Nativity and the Octave of St. Stephen.

At Mattins the invitatory is Regem Martyrum Dominum, Venite adoremus and the Office hymn Audit tyrannus anxius (sung with the Doxology of the Incarnation). In the first nocturn the antiphons Secus decursus aquarum etc are sung, doubled, with psalms 1, 2 and 3. The lessons are from the Prophet Jeremiah. The first lesson begins Audite verbum Domini, Cap.1:10 and continues to the end of the fourteenth verse before the text from the lesson found in the modern books begins Haec dicit Dominus: Vox in excelso audita etc,. but ends with the fifteenth verse. The second lesson begins Haec dicit Dominus: Quiescat vox etc (v. 16), the second part of the modern first lesson, and continues with the text found in the modern second lesson with the addition of a final clause from v. 20. The third lesson is sligthly longer than that found in the post-Clementine editions having verses 24 & 25. The responsories are proper to the feast. In the second nocturn the antiphons Dabo Sanctis meis etc are sung, doubled, with psalms 14, 15 & 23. The lessons are from a sermon of St. Augustine on the Saints. The lessons are longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions. In the third nocturn the antiphons Justi autem etc are sung, doubled, with psalms 32, 33 & 45. However, the eighth antiphon, Isti sunt, is proper to the feast. The homily on St. Matthew's Gospel is from the writings of St. Jerome. Again these are longer than those found in the post-Clementine editions. The ninth responsory is omitted and in its place the Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Herodes iratus etc are sung, doubled, with Pss. 92, 99, 62-66, Benedicite and 148-149-150. The Office hymn is Salvete, flores Martyrum (again, sung with the Doxology of the Incarnation). After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of the Octave of the Nativity, the Octave of St. Stephen and the Octave of St. John.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons of Lauds are sung. The hymns have their Doxology changed in honour of the Incarnation. At Prime the short lesson is of the feast, Hi empti sunt.

At Mass the Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Octave of the Nativity, the third collect of the Octave of St. Stephen and the fourth collect of the Octave of St. John. The Alleluia and its verse given in the Missal are sung in place of the Tract. The Credo is sung and the preface and communicantes are of the Octave of the Nativity.

Vespers are of the Nativity, but from the chapter of the Holy Innocents with commemorations of the following feast of St. Thomas of Canterbury, the Octave of the Nativity, the Octave of St. Stephen and the Octave of St. John.

Thursday, 7 January 2021

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.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Rex pacificus magnificatus est etc were sung, doubled, 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, doubled, 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, doubled, 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.

Sunday, 3 January 2021

December 21st - Fourth Sunday of Advent


The Fourth Sunday of Advent is of semi-double rite. The liturgical colour, until Vespers, is violet. The feast of St. Thomas the Apostle is transferred to tomorrow.

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 clavis David was sung entire both before and after the Magnificat. 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 antiphon on the Benedictus is proper to the 21st December, Nolite timere etc. The Suffrages are omitted in Advent.

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 liturgical colour changes to red and first Vespers of St. Thomas the Apostle are sung. The antiphons Hoc est praeceptum meum etc are sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The Office hymn is Exsultet caelum laudibus. The antiphon on the Magnificat is proper to the feast, Quia vidisti me etc. After the collect of the feast the Sunday is commemorated with the Great 'O' Antiphon appointed for the 21st December, O Oriens. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

Art: Jerome Nadal