Wednesday, 21 December 2016
St. Thomas the Apostle
The feast of St. Thomas the Apostle is a Double of the Second Class. The feast was preceded by a Vigil yesterday. The liturgical colour of the feast is red. According to tradition St. Thomas preached the Gospel in Asia and the Indian sub-continent. He is believed to have founded, inter alia, the St. Thomas Christians on the West coast of India, one of several groups using the East-Syrian family of liturgies.
At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Hoc est praeceptum meum etc were sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The Office hymn was Exsultet orbis gaudiis. The antiphon on the Magnificat was proper to the feast, Quia vidisti me etc. After the collect of the feast the Advent feria was commemorated with the Great 'O' Antiphon appointed for the 20th December O clavis David and the collect of the previous Sunday. At Compline the Dominical psalms were sung and the preces were omitted.
At Mattins the invitatory is Regem Apostolorum Dominum, Venite adoremus and the Office hymn is Aeterna Christi munera. In the first nocturn the antiphons In omnem terram etc are sung with psalms 18, 33 & 44. The lessons are Sic nos existimet homo from St. Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians. In the second nocturn the antiphons Principes populorum etc are sung with psalms 46, 60 & 63. The fourth lesson is proper to the feast, the fifth and sixth are taken from the Common. In the third nocturn the antiphons Exaltabuntur etc are sung with psalms 74, 96 & 98. The homily on St. John's Gospel is from St. Gregory. At Lauds the antiphons Hoc est praeceptum meum etc are sung with the Dominical psalms (92, 99, 62, Benedicite & 148). The Office hymn is Exsultet orbis gaudiis. The antiphon on the Benedictus, Quia vidisti me, Thoma, credidisti: beati, qui non viderunt, et crediderunt, alleluia, is proper to the feast and refers to the incident recorded in the Gospel of St. John about St. Thomas' doubt in the Risen LORD. A commemoration is then sung of the Advent feria, the antiphon on the Benedictus is Nolite timere etc that is proper to the 21st of December.
The antiphons sung at Lauds are sung in due order at the Horae Minores. At Prime the festal psalms (53, 118i & 118ii) are sung and the lectio brevis is Ibant Apostoli.
Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Advent feria. The Creed is sung and the preface is of the Apostles.
At second Vespers the antiphons Juravit Dominus etc are sung with psalms 109, 112, 115, 125 & 138. The antiphon on the Magnificat is Quia vidisti me, Thoma etc and the Advent feria is commemorated with the Great 'O' Antiphon O Oriens proper to the twenty-first day of December and the collect of the preceding Sunday. At Compline the Dominical psalms are sung and the preces are omitted.
In the 'liturgical books of 1962' St. Thomas' feast loses its Vigil, first Vespers and the feast begins with Mattins. At the Hours the antiphons and psalms are taken from the ferial Psalter. At Prime the lectio brevis is of the season.
Art: Wikipedia: a Russian Icon of St. Thomas, 18th century.