Sunday, 21 May 2017

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. That Ascension will, of course, be celebrated on Thursday of this week after the three Rogation Days of the Lesser Litanies on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the psalms of Saturday were sung under the single antiphon Alleluia. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration was sung of the preceding feast of St. Bernardine of Siena followed by the Paschal Commemoration of the Cross. At Compline Te lucis was sung with the Paschal Doxology and the Dominical preces were sung

At Mattins in the invitatory and hymn are as on the other Sundays of Paschaltide. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of the first Epistle of St. Peter. In the second nocturn the lessons are from the writing of St. Ambrose on faith in the Resurrection and in the third nocturn the lessons are a homily of St. Augustine on St. John's Gospel on the LORD's words "Amen, amen, I say to you: if you ask the Father anything in my name, he will give it to you." The Te Deum is sung. At Lauds, after the collect of the Sunday, the Paschal Commemoration of the Cross is sung.

At the Hours the hymns are sung with the Paschal Doxology. At Prime the Dominical preces are sung.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is Concede nos, the third collect is Ecclesiae. The Creed is sung and the preface is of Paschaltide.

At Vespers the Sunday psalms are sung under the single antiphon Alleluia. The Office hymn is Ad regias Agni dapes. After the collect of the Sunday the Paschal Commemoration of the Cross is sung. At Compline Te lucis is sung with the Paschal Doxology and the Dominical preces are sung.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at Vespers. The Paschal Commemoration of the Cross has been abolished. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn. The Dominical preces have been abolished. Hymns at the Little Hours do not have the Paschal Doxology. At Mass there is but a single collect.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Fourth Sunday after Pascha


The fourth Sunday after Pascha is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is white. The Gospel pericopes are from the sixteenth chapter of St. John's Gospel where the LORD talks of His ascending to Heaven and the coming of the Paraclete.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the psalms of Saturday were sung under the single antiphon Alleluia. The Office hymn was Ad regias Agni dapes. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of St. Robert Bellarmine and of St. Boniface. The Paschal Commemoration of the Cross was omitted due to the double feast. At Compline Te lucis was sung with the Paschaltide Doxology and the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory and hymn are sung as previous Sundays of Paschaltide. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of the Epistle of St. James. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from the Treatise of St. Cyprian on the boon of patience. In the third nocturn the homily is from St. Augustine. The Te Deum is sung. At Lauds the Sunday psalms are sung under a single antiphon, Alleluia. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is sung of St. Bonfiface followed by the Paschal Commemoration of the Cross.

At the Hours the hymns have the Paschaltide Doxology, the psalms are sung under a single antiphon consisting of a triple Alleluia. At Prime the Dominical psalms are sung (Pss. 117, 118i & 118ii). The Dominical preces are sung.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of St. Boniface, the third collect is Concede nos. The Creed is sung and the preface is of Paschaltide.

At Vespers the Dominical psalms are sung under the single antiphon, Alleluia. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of the following Office of St. John Baptist de la Salle and of St. Boniface. The Paschal Commemoration of the Cross is omitted due to the double feasts. At Compline the Domincal preces are omitted due to the double feast.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at either Vespers. Mattins is reduced to a single nocturn. At Lauds there are no commemorations. The Paschal Commemoration of the Cross has been abolished. The hymns at the Little Hours do not have the Paschal Doxology. At Mass there is but a single collect.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Third Sunday after Pascha


The third Sunday after Pascha is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is white. The Gospel pericopes from St. John's Gospel have the LORD telling the Disciples that in a little while He will be going to the Father. It is also the Sunday within the Octave of the Solemnity of St. Joseph. Prior to the reform of 1911-13 this feast was celebrated on the Third Sunday after Pascha but was subsequently moved to the third Wednesday after Easter. Privileged Votive Masses of the Solemnity of St. Joseph may be celebrated.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the psalms of Vespers for Saturday were sung under the single antiphon, Alleluia. The chapter, Carissimi: Obsecro vos etc, was proper to the Sunday, the Office hymn was Ad regias Agni dapes. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of St. John before the Latin Gate, of St. Stanislaus and of the Octave of the Solemnity of St. Joseph. The Paschal Suffrage of the Cross was omitted due to the double feasts and Octave. At Compline Te lucis was sung with the Paschal Doxology and the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is the great proclamation of the Resurrection, Surrexit Dominus vere, Alleluia. The Office hymn is Rex sempiterne Caelitum. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of the book of the Apocalypse of St. John. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from a sermon of St. Augustine and in the third nocturn St. Augustine also provides the homily on St. John's Gospel. At Lauds, after the collect of the Sunday, commemorations are sung of St. Stanislaus and of the Octave of St. Joseph. The Paschal Commemoration of the Cross is omitted.

At Prime and the Hours the hymns have the Paschal Doxology. At Prime the Dominical preces are omitted due to the Octave.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Octave of St. Joseph, the third collect is of St. Anicetus. The Creed is sung and the Paschaltide preface is sung.

Masses other than Conventual Masses may all be of the Solemnity of St. Joseph. The Mass Adjutor is sung, as on the feast. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Sunday, the Creed is sung. The preface is of St. Joseph and the last Gospel is of the Sunday. The liturgical colour is white.

At Vespers the Dominical psalms are sung under the single antiphon, Alleluia. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of the following Office of the Apparition of St. Michael the Archangel, of St. Stanislaus and of the Octave. The Paschal Commemoration of the Cross is omitted due to the double feasts and Octave. At Compline the Domincal preces are also omitted due to the Octave.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' at Vespers yesterday there were no commemorations. The feast of the Solemnity of St. Joseph and its Octave have been abolished. The feasts of St. John before the Latin Gate and of the Apparition of St. Michael have been struck from the Calendar. At Compline Te lucis was sung with the ordinary Doxology. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. At Lauds there are no commemorations. At the Hours, and at Compline, the hymns are sung without the Paschal Doxology. At Mass there is a single collect. At Vespers there are no commemorations.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Saturday, 6 May 2017

St. John before the Latin Gate


The feast of St. John before the Latin Gate is of greater-double rite and its liturgical colour is red. The feast appears in the Gregorian Sacramentaries on May 6th and is the dedication festival of the fifth century church in Rome named after the feast. The feast commemorates the 'martyrdom' of St. John the Evangelist as described by Tertullian in the year AD 92. On the orders of Domitian St. John was cast into a cauldron of hot oil yet emerged unscathed and was exiled to the island of Patmos.


The church, in Rome, above, of San Giovanni a Porta Latina was dedicated in honour of this feast and used to be a liturgical station on Saturday in Passion Week.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Sancti tui etc were sung, doubled, with Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116 from the Common of Apostles in Paschaltide. The Office hymn was Tristes erant Apostoli. After the collect of the feast commemorations were sung of the preceding feast of St. Pius V and of the Octave of the Solemnity of St. Joseph. The Paschal Suffrage was omitted as ere the Dominical preces at Compline.

At Mattins the invitatory is Regem Apostolorum Dominum, Venite adoremus. The Office hymn is again Tristes erant Apostoli and in the first nocturn the antiphons Stabunt justi etc are sung along with the psalms from the Common. The lessons for the first nocturn are the Incipit of the first Epistle of St. John, Quod fuit, found on Sunday within the Octave of the Ascension, which are sung with the responsories from the Common. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from the writings of St. Jerome against Jovinian, in the fifth lesson St. Jerome relates Tertullian's account of St. John's 'martyrdom'. In the third nocturn the homily on St. Matthew's Gospel is again from St. Jerome. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Sancti tui etc are again sung, this time with the Dominical psalms. The chapter and Office hymn, Paschale mundo gaudium, and the antiphon on the Benedictus, Filiae Jerusalem, are from the Common. After the collect of the feast a commemoration of the Octave is sung.

At the Hours the Paschaltide Doxology is sung at the conclusion of the Office hymns. The antiphons Sancti tui etc are sung at the Hours. At Prime the festal psalms are sung (Pss. 53, 118i & 118ii), the short lesson is Scimus quoniam. The Dominical preces are omitted.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Mass Protexisti is sung. The Gloria is sung. The second collect is of the Octave. The Creed is sung, the preface is that of the Apostles.

At Vespers a colour change is made to white and the psalms and antiphons of Saturday are sung. The Office hymn is Ad regias Agni dapes. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of St. John, St. Stanislaus and of the Octave. The Paschal Suffrage is omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' the feast of St. John before the Latin Gate has been abolished from the Kalendar despite its appearance in seventh century liturgical texts and a fifth century church being dedicated to the event. Today is a IV class Saturday Office of the BVM. The Solemnity of St. Joseph and its Octave have also been abolished, along with its Octave. Vespers are ferial with no commemorations and even the Paschal Suffrage has been abolished too as has the Paschal Doxology at Compline etc.

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

The Solemnity of St. Joseph


The feast of the Solemnity of St. Joseph Spouse of the Blessed Virgin and Patron of the Universal Church is a Double of the First class with an Octave. It is the primary feast of St. Joseph. The feast was introduced into the Universal Kalendar by Pius IX in 1847 as the 'Patronage of St. Joseph' as a double of the second class to be celebrated on the third Sunday after Easter and in 1870 the feast became a double of the first class and the title 'Patron of the Church' added. In 1911 the feast was renamed the Solemnity of St. Joseph and became a primary double of the first class with an Octave. In 1913 the celebration was moved to the Wednesday after the second Sunday after Easter. Although relatively modern the feast is a fine example of typology with the Patriarch Joseph being used as a 'type' of the foster-father of the LORD. The feast of the Invention of the Holy Cross is transferred to Thursday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons Jacob autem etc were sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The chapter was proper and the Office hymn was Te Joseph celebrent agmina Caelitum. At Compline the Dominical psalms were sung, Te lucis had the Paschal Doxology.

The Office is proper. At Mattins the invitatory is Laudemus Deum nostrum In veneratione beati Joseph, protectoris nostri, alleluia and the Office hymn is, again, Te Joseph. The antiphons of the nocturns are proper and, as at Vespers, rather beautiful:

Angelus Domini apparuit in somnis Joseph, dicens: Surge, et accipe Puerum et Matrem ejus, et fuge in Ægyptum; et esto ibi, usque dum dicam tibi, alleluia.

Angelus Domini apparuit in somnis Joseph, dicens: Surge, et accipe Puerum et Matrem ejus, et vade in terram Israel; defunct sunt enim qui quaerebant animam Pueri, alleluia.

Consurgens Joseph, accepit Puerum et Matrem ejus, et venit in terram Israel; et habitavit in civitate, quae vocatur Nazareth, alleluia
.

In the first nocturn the lessons are from the book of Genesis and are extended in comparison to those for St. Joseph's 19th March feast. In the second nocturn the lessons are from a sermon on St. Joseph by St. Bernardine of Siena and in the third nocturn the homily is from St. Augustine on the Gospel fragment from St. Luke. The Te Deum is sung. At Lauds the antiphons from Vespers are sung with the Sunday psalms (92, 99, 62, Benedicite & 148). The Office hymn is Caelitum Joseph decus. After the collect of the feast a commemoration is sung of St. Hermenegild.

At Prime the festal psalms (53, 118i & 118ii) are sung under the first antiphon of Lauds. At Prime and the Hours the hymns are sung with the Paschaltide Doxology.

Mass follows Terce and is proper, with the introit Adjutor. The Gloria is sung. (In private Masses the second collect is of St. Hermenegild). The Creed is sung and the preface is that of St. Joseph.

At second Vespers the antiphons, psalms and hymn are those that were sung yesterday at first Vespers. The Office hymn is Te Joseph. The versicle and its respond along with the antiphon on the Magnificat are proper to second Vespers. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of the transferred feast of the Invention of the Holy Cross and of St. Monica. At Compline the Dominical psalms are sung.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' the Solemnity of St. Joseph simply does not exist as this beautiful feast was shamefully suppressed in 1956 to be replaced by the appalling 'San Giuseppe Comunista'. The feast of the Invention of the Holy Cross has also been struck from the 1962 calendar and today is kept as a IV class Paschaltide feria. The vast majority of 'traditionalists', who vociferously support the 'liturgical books of 1962', are completely and blissfully unaware of the existence of the Solemnity of St. Joseph yet alone its abolition.

Monday, 1 May 2017

SS Philip & James


The feast of the Holy Apostles SS Philip and James is a Double of the Second Class and its liturgical colour is red. In Western rites SS Philip and James have been honoured together as the relics of the two Apostles were placed together in the confessio of the Church of the Apostles in Rome at its consecration in the sixth century. The anniversary of this, the church's dedication in 560, is May 1st and so the feast of two Apostles has graced this day in Western Kalendars for nearly 1500 years. St. Philip, tradition tells us, was from Bethsaida. He was crucified at Hierapolis in Phrygia. St. James the Less was from Cana and was the first bishop of Jerusalem. St. Paul says (Galatians 1:19) 'I did not see any apostle except James the brother of the Lord'. St. James was cast from the pediment of the Temple on the orders of the Jewish High Priest and then clubbed to death.

The feast began with first Vespers yesterday afternoon. The antiphons were proper to the feast, Domine, ostende nobis Patrem etc, sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The chapter was Stabant justi and the Office hymn is Tristes erant Apostoli. The antiphon on the Magnificat, Non turbetur etc., and collect are proper to the feast. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of the Sunday and of St. Catherine of Siena. At Compline Te lucis was sung with the Paschaltide Doxology and the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is Regem Apostolorum Dominum Venite adoremus, the antiphons Stabunt justi etc are sung with the psalms from the Common of Apostles. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of letter of St. James from the fourth Sunday after Easter. These lessons are followed by the responsories from the Common, Beatus vir, qui metuit Dominum, alleluia etc. In the second nocturn the lessons are proper to the feast. The Gospel in the third nocturn is from St. John and the pericope contains the passage where the LORD tells St. Philip that if he wishes to see the Father to see Him and that in the Father's house there are many mansions. The Te Deum is sung.

At Lauds the antiphons Domine ostende nobis Patrem etc are sung with psalms 92, 99, 62, Benedicite & 148. The Office hymn is Paschale mundo gaudium and is sung with the Paschal Doxology. At the Hours the same antiphons are sung in the usual sequence. The Office hymns have the Paschal Doxology and the feastal psalms are sung at the Hours. At Prime the lectio brevis is Scimus quoniam.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Mass is proper, Exclamaverunt etc. The Gloria and Credo are sung and the preface is of the Apostles.

At second Vespers the antiphons Domine ostende nobis Patrem are sung again this time with psalms 109, 112, 115, 125 & 138. The Office hymn is Tristes erant Apostoli. After the collect of the feast a commemoration is sung of the following Office of St. Athanasius.

The 'liturgical books of 1962' plummet to a nadir today as the ancient feast of SS Philip and James has been cast aside until May 11th, the first 'free' liturgical day, and May 1st becomes the repugnant 'Joe the Worker' day. Pacelli's Commission for General Liturgical Reform had discussed making May 1st a Marian feast but settled on S. Giuseppe Artigiano (c.f. minutes of meeting 45; 19 Oct 1954 and 59; 17 Jan 1956 in Giampietro, N., 'Il Card. Ferdinado Antonelli e gli sviluppi della riforma liturgica dal 1948 al 1970', Studia Anselmiana, Rome, 1998). Clearly feasts of antiquity were not considered particularly sacred - but then again neither was anything else - so from 1956 the beautiful, albeit relatively modern, feast of the Solemnity of St. Joseph - which will be celebrated on Wednesday of this week - and its Octave were abolished and the feast of the Holy Apostles swept aside to May 11th.

Art: Melkite Church in Australia

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Second Sunday after Pascha


The Second Sunday after Pascha is sometimes referred to as 'Good Shepherd Sunday' from the words of the Epistle from I Peter "For you were as sheep gone astray: but you are now converted to the shepherd and bishop of your souls" and from the Gospel where the LORD proclaims "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd giveth his life for his sheep." The Sunday is also referred to as Misericordia after the opening words of the introit. The Sunday is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is white.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the psalms of Vespers for Saturday were sung under the single antiphon, Alleluia. The chapter, Carissimi: Christus passus est pro nobis etc, was proper to the Sunday, the Office hymn was Ad regias Agni dapes. The antiphon on the Magnificat reinforced the theme of the Sunday, Ego sum pastor ovium. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of St. Peter the Martyr and of St. Catharine of Siena. The Paschal Suffrage of the Cross was omitted due to the double feasts. At Compline Te lucis was sung to the Paschal tone with the Doxology Deo Patri sit gloria etc and the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory, Surrexit Dominus, and Office hymn, Rex sempiterne, are sung as last Sunday. Again, at the nocturns the psalms are sung under one antiphon. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the Acts of the Apostles. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from the first sermon on the Ascension of the Lord by St. Leo. In the third nocturn the homily is from St. Gregory. At Lauds the Sunday psalms (Pss. 92, 99, 62, Benedicite & 148) are sung under a single antiphon. The Office hymn is Aurora caelum purpurat. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of St. Catharine of Siena. The Paschal Commemoration of the Cross is omitted due to the occurring double feast.

At the Hours the hymns are sung with the Paschal Doxology and the psalms are sung under a single antiphon consisting of a triple Alleluia. At Prime the Dominical psalms are sung (Pss. 117, 118i & 118ii. The Dominical preces are omitted.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of St. Catherine of Siena. Today there is no third collect. The Creed is sung and the preface is of Paschaltide.

At Vespers the liturgical colour changes to red and first Vespers of SS Philip and James are sung. The antiphons are proper to the feast, Domine, ostende nobis Patrem etc, and are sung, doubled, with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The chapter is Stabant justi and the Office hymn is Tristes erant Apostoli. The antiphon on the Magnificat, Non turbetur etc., and collect are proper to the feast. After the collect of the feast commemorations are sung of the Sunday and of St. Catherine of Siena. At Compline Te lucis is sung with the Paschaltide Doxology and the Dominical preces are omitted.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' at Vespers yesterday there were no commemorations. At Compline the hymn was sung with the ordinary Doxology. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. At Lauds there are no commemorations. At Mass there is but a single collect. Vespers are first Vespers of the atrocious San Giuseppe Comunista.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Dominica in Albis - Low Sunday


Dominica in Albis, Low Sunday is a Greater-double of the first class. The Sunday is also often referred to as Quasimodo from the first words of its introit. Anciently on this day those who had been baptised on Holy Saturday took off their white robes which had been worn since the Oil of Catechumens and Chrism had been lavished upon them on Holy Saturday. 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 Office of the Octave of Pascha ended with the Office of None yesterday.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the psalms of Saturday were sung under the single antiphon, Alleluia. Chapters and hymns return to the Office from this Vespers. The Paschaltide hymn Ad regias Agni dapes was sung. Its Doxology is sung at all hymns of Iambic metre: Deo Patri sit gloria, Et Filio qui a mortuis, Surrexit ac Paraclito, In sempiterna saecula. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of St. George and of SS Soter and Caius. From this Office the dismissal, Benedicamus Domino, is sung without the double Alleluia that marked the Paschal Octave. At Compline the Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory Surrexit Dominus vere Alleluia continues to be sung. The Office hymn is Rex Sempiterne Caelitum. The psalms of each nocturn are sung under a single antiphon. In the first nocturn the antiphon is Alleluia, * lapis revolutus est, alleluia: ab ostio monumenti, alleluia, alleluia and the lessons are from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Colossians. In the second nocturn the antiphon is Alleluia, * quem quaeris mulier? alleluia, alleluia, viventem cum mortuis, alleluia, alleluia and the lessons are taken from a sermon of St. Augustine on the Octave of Easter. In the third nocturn the antiphon is Alleluia, * noli flere Maria, alleluia: resurrexit Dominus, alleluia, alleluia and the homily is from the writings of St. Gregory on St. John's Gospel. At Lauds the Sunday psalms (Pss. 92, 99, 62, Benedicite & 148) are sung under a single antiphon, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia. The Office hymn is Aurora caelum purpurat. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of St. George is sung. The Paschal Suffrage is omitted.

At Prime (Pss. 117, 118i & 118ii) and the Hours the psalms are again sung under a single antiphon at each Hour, Alleluia, * alleluia, alleluia - which is not doubled.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of St. George is sung. The Creed is sung, the preface is of Paschaltide (In hoc potissimum).

At Vespers the psalms are sung under the single antiphon Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia. The Office hymn is Ad regias Agni dapes. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of St. Fidelis of Sigmaringa and of St. George. The Paschal Suffrage is omitted. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at either Vespers or at Lauds. Mattins is reduced to a single nocturn of three lessons with the single antiphon Alleluia, lapis revolutus etc. At the Little Hours the Paschaltide Doxology is not sung with the hymns. At Mass there is a single collect. At Compline the ordinary Doxology and tone are sung with Te lucis.

Image: Jerome Nadal.

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Dominica Resurrectionis - Pascha Easter Day

Hac die quam fecit Dominus, Solemnitas solemnitatum, et Pascha nostrum Resurrectio Salvatoris nostri Jesu Christi secundum carnem. These glorious words are sung, to the tone of the Passion, at Prime today at the reading of the Martyrology before the announcement of the day and moon for tomorrow.  Holy Pascha is a Double of the First Class with a privileged Octave of the first Order.

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.  Compline was sung, at the normal time. On Holy Saturday the Office of Compline has some interesting variations. Compline began with the usual Jube, domne, blessing, short lesson and confession. Converte nos, Deus, salutaris noster and its response were then sung followed by Deus in adjutorium etc with Alleluia for the first time since Septuagesima. The psalms were sung, without an antiphon, to a special form of tone 2. The hymn, chapter and responsory are omitted and Vespere autem sabbati sung as a fragment antiphon 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.

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 one 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 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 follwed 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. During the second responsory the cantors and the celebrant don copes the principal one 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 DominiEt ecce terraemotusErat autemPrae timore autem ejus and Respondens autem Angelus all taking up the theme of the Angels, earthquake and empty tomb. Psalms 92, 99, 62, Benedicite & 148 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.

The morning Office begins with Prime. There are no hymns at the Hours during the entire Paschal Octave in the Roman rite. At Prime psalms 53 and the first two divisi of Ps. 118 are sung to a special form of Tone 2. Haec Dies is sung after the psalmody and then everything else is omitted up to the collect Domine Deus omnipotens. The Martyrology is then sung, starting with the verse indicated above. Then Sancta Maria etc is sung, the collect Dirigere et sanctificare etc and the short lesson Si consurrexistis. Terce, and the other Little Hours, are even more simple in their structure. At Terce the usual stanzas of Ps. 118 are sung to the special Tone 2 form followed by Haec dies and the collect of the day.

Mass is sung after Terce. Instead of Asperges me the Paschaltide Vidi aquam is sung today and all other Sundays in Paschaltide. In the great Mass of Easter, Resurrexi, the Gloria is sung, one collect is sung. Haec dies is sung as the Gradual. The sequence Victimae paschali laudes is sung after the Alleluia. The Creed is sung and Ite missa est alleluia, alleluia is sung as the dismissal.

Sext and None have exactly the same structure as Terce. At Vespers the antiphons sung at Lauds, Angelus autem Domini etc, are are sung with the usual Sunday psalms. Haec dies is sung in place of the chapter, hymn and versicle & response. The solemn tone is used for Benedicamus Domino, alleluia, alleluia.

At Compline the usual psalms are sung to Tone 8G without any preceding antiphon, followed by an antiphon consisting of Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia. This is followed by the Nunc dimittis sung to the Paschal Tone 2, without antiphons. Haec dies is then sung followed by the collect Visita quaesumus etc and then, as yesterday the antiphon Regina coeli etc.

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Dominica in Palmis - Palm Sunday


Palm Sunday is a privileged semi-double Sunday of the first class and the sixth, and last, Sunday in Lent. No feast can take its place. In the Roman rite Palm Sunday, in its authentic form, is a truly magnificent day with the splendid solemn blessing of Palms and Procession before the principle Mass. The liturgical colour, throughout, is violet.

The Office began, as usual in Lent, with Vespers yesterday morning. Vespers were sung with the antiphons and psalms of Saturday. The chapter, from Philippians, Fratres: Hoc enim senite, was proper to the Sunday. The Office hymm was Vexilla regis. The antiphon on the Magnificat, Pater juste, and collect were proper to Palm Sunday. The Suffrage is omitted being Passiontide. At Compline, sung at the usual time, the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins there are the usual three nocturns. The antiphons and psalms at all the nocturns are those appointed for Sundays. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the book of Jeremiah the Prophet. In the second nocturn the lessons are a sermon of St. Leo the Great and in the third a homily of St. Ambrose. The Te Deum is not sung but a ninth responsory, Circumdederunt me viri mendaces etc., is sung in its place. At Lauds the antiphons are proper, Dominus Deus etc., to Palm Sunday and the second scheme of Psalms is sung (50, 117, 62, Benedictus es, 148). The chapter is proper to the Sunday and the Office hymn is Lustra sex.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Pueri Hebraeorum etc. At Prime psalms 92, 99 (displaced from Lauds) and the first two divisi of Ps. 118 are sung. The Dominical preces are sung and the short lesson is Faciem meam. At Terce the antiphon is Pueri Hebraeorum vestimenta which again will be heard shortly afterwards at the distribution of Palms.

After Terce, as usual, the Asperges ceremony takes place before Mass. The deacon and subdeacon wear violet folded chasubles. Being in Passiontide the Lesser Doxology is omitted after the verse of the Miserere. 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 fili David, O Rex Israel etc. The rubrics direct that the Palms are to be blessed at the Epistle side of the altar.



(The above image is a screen shot from an historic video a friend alerted me to be found on YouTube entitled 'SSPX UK History'. In the first twenty minutes or so of the video one can see some images of Traditional Holy Week being celebrated in the, then, newly acquired church of SS Joseph and Padarn in north London in 1983.  There is also a clip from a BBC documentary that has footage of the 1982 Palm Sunday liturgy celebrated a week or so after the church opened.  The $$PX banned the traditional rites from 1983 so the images are particularly poignant.)

The blessing begins with the celebrant reading an 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, at the missal, he sings the collect Omnipotens sempiterne.

The celebrant's hands are washed after the distribution of Palms whilst the, veiled, Processional Cross is decorated with some of 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 but circumstances may 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, or Crucifer when there are no ministers, 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.




(The photograph above is taken from 'Cardinal Bourne - A Life in Pictures', a memorial tribute to Cardinal Bourne, Archbishop of Westminster, and is from Palm Sunday 1919. Note the elaborate Palm the Cardinal is holding and the folded chasubles worn by the Canon Assistant Deacons (who are also wearing rochets). The photograph is at the stage when Gloria laus is being sung before the re-entry into the Cathedral.)

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 being 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) to a most haunting tone.



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.

Sext and None again have proper antiphons, Tibi revelavi etc and Invocabo etc respectively. At Vespers the antiphons and psalms of Sunday are sung. The chapter is Hoc enim senite and the Office hymn is Vexilla regis, both as at Vespers yesterday. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' Palm Sunday has been radically given a 'makeover' to the extent that the official title of the day has even been changed to 'Second Sunday of the Passion or Palm Sunday'.  For those interested in the depressing catalogue of destruction an earlier post here gives the details, simply ignore the references to occurring Offices.  The image below shows a typical blessing of Palms in the reformed rite.

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Passion Sunday


Passion Sunday is the fifth and penultimate Sunday in Lent. It is a semi-double Sunday of the first class and its liturgical colour is violet.

The most apparent and visually striking feature of this Sunday is the Roman practice of veiling all crosses and images with violet cloth. The custom seems to have developed from the words in the day's Gospel 'Jesus autem abscondit se' - but Jesus hid himself. The veiling takes place after Mass on Saturday morning before Vespers are sung. The praxis should not be confused with that of Lenten Array where holy images were covered in off-white linen or cloth from the beginning of Lent. From Vespers along with the veiling, the liturgy took on certain more penitential aspects that belong to Passiontide. The Gloria Patri is omitted from the invitatory of Mattins, from the responsories of Mattins and from the short responsories of the Hours. It is also omitted from the Asperges ceremony before Mass on both Passion Sunday and on Palm Sunday. In Masses 'of the season' Gloria Patri is also omitted from the introit and Lavabo along with the psalm Judica me Deus. The Suffrage of the Saints is also omitted until after Trinity Sunday.

At Vespers, yesterday morning, the antiphons and psalms were those of Saturday, the chapter was proper to Passion Sunday. The Office hymn was the magnificent Vexilla regis. This hymn is sung at Vespers throughout Passiontide and at the Mass of the Pre-Sanctified on Good Friday. The antiphon on the Magnificat and collect were proper to the Sunday. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration was sung of St. Francis of Paula. At Compline the Lesser Doxology was omitted from the short responsory. The Dominical preces were omitted due to the occurring double feast.

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 hymn is Pange, lingua ...Lauream. The same invitatory and hymn are sung from today until the Sacred Triduum in the Office of the Season. The antiphons given in the Psalter for Sundays are sung. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of the book of Jeremiah. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from the ninth sermon on Lent by St. Leo the Great. In the third nocturn the lessons are a homily of St. Gregory on St. John's Gospel. The Te Deum is omitted as on other Lenten Sundays and a ninth responsory, Quis dabit capiti, sung in its place. At Lauds the antiphons, Vide Dominum etc., are proper to the Sunday and the second scheme of Psalms sung (50, 117, 62, Benedictus es & 148). The chapter is proper to the Sunday and hymn is Lustra sex. After the collect of the day a commemoration is sung of St. Francis of Paula. The Suffrage is omitted in Passiontide as noted above.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons, Ego daemoninum etc., are proper to the Sunday. At Prime the psalms are 92, 99 (displaced from Lauds) and the first two divisi of Ps. 118. At Prime the Dominical preces are sung.

Mass is sung after Terce. The ministers wear folded chasubles. The Gloria is not sung. The second collect is of St. Francis of Paula. There is no third collect in Passiontide. As usual in Lent a Tract is sung after the Gradual. The Creed is sung, the preface is of the Cross and the dismissal is Benedicamus Domino sung by the deacon whilst facing the celebrant and altar.

Vespers are of the Sunday with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113. The Office hymn is Vexilla regis. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is sung of St. Francis of Paula. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' Passion Sunday becomes re-branded as 'First Sunday of the Passion'. There is no commemoration at Vespers. Mattins is reduced down to usual single nocturn of three lessons. At Prime the psalmody is Ps. 53 and the first two divisi of Ps. 118. At Mass there is only a single collect and the dismissal is Ite, missa est. The ministers wear dalmatic and tunicle instead of folded chasubles.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Fourth Sunday in Lent

The Fourth Sunday in Lent is known as Laetare Sunday after the opening words of the Introit at its Mass Laetare, Jerusalem - Rejoice Jerusalem - and is also known as 'mid-Lent' Sunday and is also 'Mothering Sunday' in many countries including the United Kingdom. It is a semi-double Sunday of the first class. The distinguishing feature of this Sunday, in relatively modern times, is the permitted, though not by any measure of obligation, use of rose-coloured vestments. Rose is perceived as a lighter shade of violet and the use of rose vestments developed from the older praxis of a golden rose being given to female monarchs by the pope on this day. Cardinals of the Court of Rome wore rose watered-silk choir dress too on this Sunday along with the corresponding Gaudete Sunday in Advent. For the rest of Lent Cardinals wore their 'winter violet' merino cassock, mantelletum and mozzeta (not the violet watered silk of their 'summer' violet). This practice disappeared during the 1920s. There is no obligation whatsoever to wear rose and the older praxis of violet vestments, with the deacon and subdeacon in dalmatic and tunicle respecitively, not folded chasubles, may be maintained.

Vespers yesterday morning were second Vespers of the feast of the Annunciation. The antiphons Missus est etc were sung, doubled, with Pss. 109, 112, 121, 126 & 147. The chapter was proper to the feast and the Office hymn was Ave Maris stella. The antiphon on the Magnificat and collect, were again, proper to the feast. After the collect of the feast a commemoration of the Sunday was sung. At Compline the Dominical psalms were sung. Te lucis, was sung with the Doxology in honour of the Incarnation, Jesu tibi sit gloria etc. The Dominical preces were omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is, as on the previous Sundays of Lent, Non sit vobis and the Office hymn is Ex more. The antiphons given in the Psalter for Sundays are used. In the first nocturn the lessons are from Exodus and the story of Moses and the Burning Bush. In the second nocturn the lessons are from the writings of St. Basil the Great on fasting and in the third nocturn the lessons are a homily of St. Augustine on St. John's Gospel. At Lauds the antiphons, Tunc acceptabis etc., are proper to the Sunday and the second scheme of Psalms sung (50, 117, 62, the canticle Benedictus es, 148). The chapter is proper to the Sunday and hymn is O sol salutis. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of the Saints is.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons, Accepit ergo etc., are proper to the Sunday. At Prime the psalms are 92, 99 (displaced from Lauds) and the first two divisi of Ps. 118. The Dominical preces are sung and the short lesson is Quaerite Dominum.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is not sung. The second collect is A cunctis, the third collect Omnipotens. A Tract is sung after the Gradual, the Credo is sung, the preface is of Lent and the dismissal is Benedicamus Domino, sung by the deacon facing the celebrant and altar. As folded chasubles are not worn the organ may be played. As noted above violet vestments may be used in the absence of rose, or in preference to it, in which case the deacon and subdeacon wear the dalmatic and tunicle not folded chasubles.

Vespers are of the Sunday. Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 113 are sung. The Office hymn is Audi benigne Conditor. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of the following feast of St. John Damascene. The Suffrage of the Saints is omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' Vespers yesterday were sung at the same time as outside of Lent. At Compline the ordinary Doxology is sung with Te lucis. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. At Lauds there are is no Suffrage. At Prime the psalms are 53 and the first two divisi of Ps. 118. The preces are omitted. At Mass there is only a single collect. The dismissal is Ite, missa est. At Vespers there are no commemorations.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Third Sunday in Lent


The third Sunday in Lent is a semi-double Sunday of the first class and its liturgical colour is violet. The Gospel pericope from St. Luke at Mattins and Mass recounts the LORD casting out evil from a demoniac. The feast of St. Joseph Spouse of the BVM is transferred to Monday.

At Vespers yesterday morning the antiphons and psalms were of Saturday, the chapter was proper to the Sunday, and the Office hymn was Audi, benigne conditor. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration was sung of the preceding feast of St. Cyril of Jerusalemen. The Suffrage of the Saints was omitted as were the Dominical preces at Compline due to the double feast.

At Mattins the invitatory is Non sit vobis and the Office hymn is Ex more, as on the other Sundays in Lent. The antiphons and psalms of Sunday are sung. In the first nocturn the lessons are from Genesis and the story of Joseph, his coat of many colours and his brothers casting him into a pit. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from the Book of St. Augustine on Joseph. In the third nocturn the lessons are a homily of the Venerable Bede on St. Luke's Gospel. A ninth responsory, Lamentabatur Jacob, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Fac benigne etc., and the second scheme of Psalms sung (50, 117, 62, Benedictus es, 148). The chapter is proper to the Sunday and the Office hymn is O sol salutis. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of the Saints is sung.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Et cum ejecisset Jesus etc. At Prime the psalms are Pss. 92, 99 (displaced from Lauds) and the first two divisi of Ps. 118. The Dominical preces are sung.

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

In the afternoon the liturgical colour changes to white and first Vespers of the feast of St. Joseph are sung. The proper antiphons Jacob autem etc are sung, doubled, with Pss. 109, 110, 111, 112 & 116. The Office hymn is Te, Joseph, celebrent agmina caelitum. After the collect of the feast a commemoration of the Sunday is sung. The Suffrage is omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline.

In 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at Vespers which are sung in the afternoon as at any other time of the year. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. At Lauds there is no Suffrage. At Prime the psalms are Ps.53 and the first two divisi of Ps.118, the Domincial preces are never sung. At Mass the ministers wear dalmatic and tunicle, as in Septuagesima. There is only one collect and the dismissal is Ite, missa est. Vespers are of the Sunday with a commemoration of St. Joseph.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Second Sunday in Lent

The Second Sunday in Lent is a semi-double Sunday of the first class and its liturgical colour is violet. The Gospel pericopes from St. Matthew's Gospel give the account of the Transfiguration of the LORD.

At Vespers yesterday morning the antiphons and psalms 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 a commemoration of St. Gregory the Great was sung. The Suffrage of the Saints was omitted as were the Dominical preces at Compline.

At Mattins the invitatory is Non sit vobis and the Office hymn is Ex more. The antiphons and psalms given for Sunday are sung. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the twenty-seventh chapter of Genesis and the story of Jacob and Esau. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from the book of St. Augustine against lying and explain the mystery of Jacob's actions. In the third nocturn the lessons are a homily of St. Leo the Great on the Transfiguration of the LORD. A ninth responsory, Cum audisset Jacob, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the antiphons Domine labia mea aperies etc are proper to the Sunday and are sung with the second scheme of Psalms (50, 117, 62, Benedictus es and 148). The chapter is proper to the Sunday and hymn is O sol salutis. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of St. Gregory is sung.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons are proper to the Sunday. At Prime the psalms are 92, 99 (displaced from Lauds) and the first two divisions of Ps. 118. The Dominical preces are omitted and the short lesson is Quaerite Dominum.

Mass is sung after Terce. The deacon and subdeacon wear violet folded chasubles. There is no Gloria. The second collect is of St. Gregory. There is no third collect. A Tract is sung after the Gradual, the Creed is sung, the preface is of Lent and the dismissal is Benedicamus Domino, sung by the deacon facing the altar and celebrant.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms (109, 110, 111, 112 & 113) are of Sunday. The Office hymn is Audi, benigne Conditor. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of St. Gregory is sung. The Suffrage of the saints is omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline due to the concurring double feast.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' Vespers on Saturday are sung at the same time as any other day of the year, there are no commemorations. At Compline the Dominical preces are never sung having been abolished. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. At Lauds there are no commemorations. At Prime the psalms are the festal arrangement of Ps. 53 and the first two divisi of Ps. 118 and the Domincial preces are omitted. At Mass the ministers wear dalmatic and tunicle, as in Septuagesima, there is only a single collect. The dismissal is Ite, missa est. At Vespers there are no commemorations.

Sunday, 5 March 2017

First Sunday in Lent


The First Sunday in Lent is a semi-double Sunday of the first class. No feast can take precedence over it or any such Sunday. The liturgical colour of the Sunday is violet. At Mass, unlike on the Sundays of Septuagesima, the ministers wear folded chasubles rather than dalmatic and tunicle and the organ is silent (as has been the practice too since Ash Wednesday). The Gospel pericope at Mattins and Mass is St. Matthew's account of the LORD's temptation by Satan in the desert. Vespers yesterday morning marked the ancient beginning of Lent before the addition of Ash Wednesday and the intervening days. On these added days although certain penitential practices have entered the Liturgy such as the use folded chasubles and the ferial preces at the Hours the Office hymns etc were still those used in previous weeks. Vespers of the first Sunday in Lent mark the beginning of the Pars Verna, the Spring volume of the Breviary,

At Vespers yesterday morning the antiphons and psalms of Saturday were sung. The chapter was proper, Fratres: Hortamur vos, and the Office hymn was Audi, benigne Conditor. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration was sung of the preceding feast of St. Casimir followed by the Suffrage of the Saints. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the invitatory is Non sit vobis and the hymn is Ex more. These are both used throughout the first four weeks of Lent. The antiphons and psalms given in the Psalter for Sundays are sung, as on previous Sundays. In the first nocturn the lessons are from the Second Letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from a sermon on Lent by St. Leo the Great and in the third nocturn the lessons are a homily of St. Gregory the Great on St. Matthew's account of the temptation of the LORD. As in Septuagesima there is no Te Deum but a ninth responsory, which today is Angelis suis Deus mandavit de te.

At Lauds the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Cor mundum etc., and the second scheme of Psalms is sung (50, 117, 62, Benedictus es, 148). The chapter is proper to the Sunday and hymn is O sol salutis. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of the Saints is sung.

At Prime and the Hours the antiphons are proper to the Sunday, Jesus autem etc. At Prime the psalms are 92, 99 (displaced from Lauds) and the first two divisi of 118. The Dominical preces are sung and the short lesson is Quaerite Dominum.

Mass is sung after Terce. As folded chasubles are word by the ministers the organ is silent. At Mass the Gloria is not sung. The second collect is A cunctis, the third collect is Omnipotens. A Tract is sung after the Gradual, the Creed is sung, the preface is of Lent and the dismissal is Benedicamus Domino, sung by the deacon facing the celebrant and altar.

Vespers are of the Sunday, sung at the normal time (as Sundays are not fast days). The antiphons and psalms are those used on Sundays, the chapter is proper and the Office hymn is Audi, benigne Conditor. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is sung of the following Office of SS Perpetua and Felicitas. At Compline the Dominical preces are omitted.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' Vespers on the weekdays of Lent are sung at the same time as during the rest of the Liturgical year. There were no commemorations nor Suffrage at Vespers. There were no preces at Compline. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. At Lauds there is no Suffrage. At Prime the psalms are Ps. 53 and the first two divisi of Ps. 118 as on feasts, there are no Dominical preces At Mass the ministers wear dalmatic and tunicle, as in Septuagesima. There is but a single collect. The dismissal is Ite, missa est. At Vespers there are no commemorations.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Ash Wednesday


Ash Wednesday is a privileged greater feria although only of simple rite. No feast can be celebrated on this day of whatever rank. The liturgical colour of the day is violet. In earlier times the rite which gives the day its name, the sprinkling of ash on the heads of penitents, was reserved to those public penitents who underwent a public and dramatic expulsion from the church building. Although no longer generally practiced echoes of the above can be found in today's Liturgy which contains a general imposition of Ashes on all of those who wish to receive them. The Liturgy is interesting too in that much remains of the Office of the Septuagesima season as originally Lent began with the Office of the first Sunday.

The third part of the Pontificale Romanum still contains the rite for the Expulsion of Public Penitents - De Expulsione Publice Poenitentium ab Ecclesia in feria Quarta Cinerum. In that rite, after Sext, when the bishop was to celebrate Mass this day, the bishop vested in pontificals as far as the dalmatic and then donned a violet cope. Public penitents assembled in sack-cloth in their bare feet and were given a penance for Lent and then were given ashes, which the bishop had blessed. Then followed a ceremony that included the Seven Penitential Psalms and Litany. It culminated in the penitents being led, physically, from the church and expelled. The Caermoniale Episcoporum alludes to the Expulsion of Penitents in churches where it is the custom, C.E. Lib II, Cap.18, 2.

The Expulsion of Penitents from a 1611 edition of the Pontificale Romanum from Google Books.

The Office of Ash Wednesday begins with Mattins. The invitatory is Deum magnum Dominum, Venite adoremus and the Office hymn is Rerum Creator optime both from the ferial Office per annum. The antiphons Speciosus forma etc are sung with the nine psalms/psalm divisi of a single nocturn from the ferial Office for Wednesdays. The second scheme of Mattins for Wednesday is used, wherein Psalm 49 is split into three divisi rather than the usual two. The lessons in the nocturn are from a homily of St. Augustine reflecting on the LORD's Sermon on the Mount from St. Matthew's Gospel. The responsories are taken from the third nocturn of Quinquagesima Sunday. At Lauds the second scheme of psalmody is used (Pss. 50, 64, 100, Canticle of Anna & 145. The antiphon on the Benedictus and collect are both proper to the day. After the antiphon on the Benedictus has been sung in full after the canticle the choir kneels and the ferial preces are sung. After the collect of the day the Suffrage of the Saints is sung.

At the Hours again the ferial antiphons and psalter are used. Prime has a fourth psalm displaced from Lauds by the Miserere, so the psalmody at Prime is Pss. 25, 51, 52 & 96. At Prime both the Dominical and ferial preces are sung kneeling, the chapter is the ferial Pacem et veritatem. At the other Hours the short set of ferial preces are chanted with the choir again kneeling.

The blessing of Ashes and Mass follows None. The celebrant vests in a violet cope while the deacon and subdeacon wear violet folded chasubles. The organ is silent following the general rule when folded chasubles are worn. The Ashes, made from burning of the preceding year's Palms, are blessed with four collects of blessing. The short conclusion of these prayers may indicate the blessing was separated by the Expusion 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 Omnipotens. The preface of Lent is sung for the first time this year. 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 ferial. The Office hymn is Caeli Deus sanctissime. The ferial preces are sung with the choir kneeling. After the collect the Suffrage of the Saints is sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung, kneeling.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' the ferial preces are sung at Lauds and Vespers only. At Lauds and Vespers Suffrage has been abolished. At Prime there are three psalms 25, 51 & 52 and the chapter is the festal Regi saeculorum - bizzare! At Prime and the Hours the preces are omitted. Mass is sung after Terce. At the blessing of Ashes and Mass the ministers wear dalmatic and tunicle. Judica me Deus etc is omitted from the beginning of Mass. There is only one collect. The extended kneeling is omitted with the choir rising at the conclusion of the Canon. The dismissal is Ite missa est.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Quinquagesima Sunday


Quinquagesima Sunday is a semi-double of the second class and its liturgical colour is violet. The Gospel pericopes are taken from St. Luke and give the account of the giving of sight to the man born blind.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms were of Saturday, the chapter, antiphon on the Magnificat and collect were proper to Quinquagesima Sunday. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of the Saints was sung. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins, as on the previous two Sundays, the antiphons and psalms are those used on Sundays throughout the year. In the first nocturn the lessons are again from Genesis and this Sunday concern the story of Abraham. In the second nocturn the lessons are from St. Ambrose on the Book on the Patriarch Abraham and in the third nocturn the lessons are a homily from St. Gregory on St. Luke's Gospel of the man blind from birth whose sight was restored by the LORD. The blind man is a figure of the human race according to St. Gregory. A ninth responsory, Caecus sedebat secus viam etc, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the 'second scheme' of psalms is sung: Pss. 50, 117, 62, Benedictus es and 148. The antiphons at Lauds are proper for Quinquagesima Sunday, Secundum multitudinem etc, as are the antiphon at the Benedictus and the collect. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of the Saints is sung.

At all the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper to Quinquagesima Sunday. At Prime the order of psalmody is that used when the second schema of Lauds is sung, i.e. Pss. 92, 99 (displaced at Lauds) and Ps. 118i & 118ii. The Dominical preces are sung.

In Mass the Gloria is omitted, the second collect is A cunctis, the third collect is chosen by the Dean or rector. A Tract is sung after the Gradual, the Credo is sung, the Preface is of the Blessed Trinity and Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal by the deacon facing the altar. The ministers wear dalmatic and tunicle.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms are those used on Sundays, the chapter is proper to the Sunday as is the antiphon at the Magnificat. The Office hymn is Lucis creator. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of the Saints is sung as are the Domincal preces at Compline.

Following the 'liturgical books of 1962' at Vespers the Suffrage has been abolished. At Compline the preces have been abolished. At Mattins there is but a single nocturn. At Prime Pss. 53, 118i & 118ii are sung, as on major feasts, the preces have been abolished. At Mass there is a single collect and Benedicamus Domino is suppressed in favour of Ite, missa est.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Sexagesima Sunday


Sexagesima Sunday is a semi-double of the second class and its liturgical colour is violet. The Sunday is characterised by a very lengthy Epistle from St. Paul's Latter Epistle to the Corinthians. The Gospel pericopes are from St. Luke and contain the parable of the sower with his seed landing on rock, amongst weeds and on the good ground.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms were of Saturday. The chapter was proper to the Sunday, Fratres: Libenter suffertis, and the Office hymn was Jam sol recedit igneus. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of All Saints was sung. At Compline the Dominical preces were sung.

At Mattins the antiphons and psalms are from the Psalter for Sundays. In the first nocturn the lessons continue to be read from Genesis (Ch. 5 & 6), the beginning of the story of Noah. In the second nocturn the lessons are from St. Ambrose on Noah and the Ark and in the third nocturn the lessons are a homily from St. Gregory on the Gospel of the seed falling on good and poor ground. A ninth responsory, Cum turba plurima, is sung in place of the Te Deum.

At Lauds the 'second scheme' of psalms is sung: Pss 50, 117, 62, Canticle of the Three Children (Benedictus es) and 148. The antiphons at Lauds are proper for Sexagesima Sunday, Secundum magnam misericordiam as are the chapter and antiphon on the Benedictus. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of All Saints is sung.

At Prime the order of psalmody is Pss. 92, 99 (displaced at Lauds) 118i & 118ii. The Dominical preces are sung. At the Hours the antiphons, Semen cecidit etc, and chapters are proper to Sexagesima Sunday.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is omitted, the second collect is A cunctis, the third collect is chosen by the Dean or Rector. A Tract is sung after the Gradual, the Creed is sung , the Preface is of Trinity and Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal by the deacon facing the altar.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms of Sunday are sung. The Office hymn is Lucis creator. After the collect of the Sunday the Suffrage of All Saints is sung. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' the Suffrage has been abolished at Vespers and Lauds. The Dominical preces at Compline and Prime have been abolished. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn. At Prime the arrangement of psalmody is festive, Pss. 53, 118i, 118ii. At Mass there is single collect and Benedicamus Domino is suppressed in favour of Ite, missa est.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Septuagesima Sunday


Septuagesima Sunday is a semi-double Sunday of the second class. Yesterday afternoon the liturgical mood became more sombre with Vespers of Septuagesima as penitential violet became the liturgical colour of the season. Although more sombre than the season after the Epiphany the short season of Septuagesima is not as penitential as Lent. Although the colour violet is used at Mass the ministers do not wear folded chasubles but dalmatic and tunicle for these three Sundays and for ferial days. The organ is still played until Ash Wednesday. However, from Septuagesima until Holy Saturday the dress of certain prelates changes. Cardinals of the Court of Rome no longer wear scarlet choir dress but that of violet. Correspondingly bishops do not wear violet choir dress but their black, or mourning dress. In the case of the latter this is not to be confused with their habitus pianus, or house dress. The black choir cassock has a train, like the violet one, and the mozzeta or mantelletum are faced with violet. However, Protonotaries Apostolic and Domestic Prelates do not change their choir dress (except sede vacante). Yesterday the third Sunday after the Epiphany was anticipated.

At Vespers on Saturday afternoon the antiphons and psalms of Saturday were sung. The chapter was proper to Septuagesima Sunday and the Office hymn was Jam sol recedit igneus sung with the melody and Doxology of the Incarnation, Jesu tibi sit gloria, Qui natus es etc. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of Our Lady of Lourdes and of the Seven Founders of the Servite Order. The Suffrage was omitted. At the end of Vespers Alleluia was added, twice, to both Benedicamus Domino and to its response. After that Alleluia will not be heard again until the Vesperal Liturgy of Holy Saturday. At Compline after the Lesser Doxology, and at all Hours until Compline on Holy Saturday, Laus tibi Domine Rex aeterne gloriae is sung in place of Alleluia. The Dominical preces were sung at Compline.

At Mattins the invitatory is Praeoccupemus as on preceding Sundays and the hymn Primo die. The antiphons and psalms are as on previous 'green' Sundays. In the first nocturn the Incipit of the Book of Genesis is read. In the second nocturn the lessons are from the Enchiridion of St. Augustine, in the third nocturn the lessons are a homily from St. Gregory on the Gospel of the labourers in the vineyard. The Te Deum is not sung but in its place is sung a ninth responsory, Ubi est Abel frater tuus?.

At Lauds the 'second scheme' of psalms is sung: Pss 50, 117, 62, Canticle of the Three Children (Benedictus es) and 148. The antiphons at Lauds are proper to the Sunday as are the versicle after the hymn Aeterne, chapter, antiphon at the Benedictus and collect. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration of the Seven Founders is sung. The Suffrage is omitted.

At all the Hours the antiphons and chapters are proper. At Prime the order of psalmody is changed and four psalms are sung, Pss. 92, 99 (displaced from Lauds) and the usual first two stanzas of Ps. 118. Both Quicumque and the Dominical preces are omitted.

At Mass the Gloria is omitted. The ministers wear violet dalmatic and tunicle. The second collect is of the Seven Founders. Today there is no third collect. A Tract replaces the Alleluia after the Gradual, the Credo is sung and the Preface is of the Blessed Trinity. Benedicamus Domino is sung, by the deacon facing the altar, as the dismissal.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms of Sunday are sung. The Office hymn is Lucis creator. After the collect of the Sunday acommemoration is sung of the Seven Founders. The Suffrage is omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' at Vespers there were no commemorations. Mattins is reduced to a single nocturn. At Prime the arrangement of psalms is truly bizarre with the festal arrangment of Pss. 53, 118i, 118ii (!) At Mass there is only one collect and Benedicamus Domino is suppressed in favour of Ite, missa est. At Vespers there are no commemorations.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 5 February 2017

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 from St. Matthew speak of the parable where the enemy sows cockle seed into the field sown with good seed.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms appointed for Saturday were sung. The Office hymn was Jam sol recedit igneus. The antiphon on the Magnificat was, as in previous weeks, Suscepit Deus. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of St. Andrew Corsini and of St. Agatha. The Suffrage of the Saints was omitted at Vespers as were the Dominical preces at Compline because of the concurrent and occurrent double feasts.

At Mattins the invitatory is Adoremus Dominum and the Office hymn is Primo die . Mattins has the usual three nocturns. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of St. Paul's Epistle to Timothy. In the second nocturn the lessons are from the writing of St. Augustine on the Apostle. In the third nocturn the homily is, again, from St. Augustine. At Lauds the Office hymn is Aeterne. After the collect of the Sunday a commemorations is sung of St. Agatha. The Suffrage of the Saints is omitted.

At Prime both Quicumque and the Dominical preces are omitted due to the occurring double feast.

At Mass the Gloria is sung, the second collect is of St. Agatha. Today there is no third collect. The Credo is sung and the preface is that of the Blessed Trinity.

At Vespers the Office hymn is Lucis creator. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of the following feast of St. Titus, of St. Agatha and of St. Dorothy. The Suffrage is again omitted due to the double feast as are the Domincal preces at Compline.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at either Vespers. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. There are no commemorations at Lauds. At Mass there is only one collect.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany


The fourth Sunday after the Epiphany is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is green. The Gospel at Mattins and Mass is from St. Matthew and is the account of the LORD stilling the storm at sea.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms appointed for Saturday were sung. The Office hymn was Jam sol recedit igneus. The antiphon on the Magnificat was, as last week, Suscepit Deus. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of St. Peter Nolasco and of St. Francis de Sales. The Suffrage of the Saints was omitted at Vespers as were the Dominical preces at Compline due to the concurring and occurring double feasts.

At Mattins the invitatory is Adoremus Dominum and the hymn Primo die . In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of St. Paul's Epistle to the Philippians. In the second nocturn the lessons are from the Book of Morals of St. Gregory the Great. In the third nocturn the homily is from St. Jerome on St. Matthew's Gospel. The Te Deum is sung. At Lauds, after the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is sung of St. Francis de Sales. The Suffrage of the Saints is omitted.

At Prime (Pss. 117, 118i &118ii) both Quicumque and the Dominical preces are omitted.

At Mass the Gloria is sung, the second collect is of St. Francis de Sales. There is no third collect. The Credo is sung and the preface is that of the Blessed Trinity.

At Vespers commemorations are sung of the following feast of St. Martina and of St. Francis de Sales. The Suffrage is not sung because of the double feast and the Domincal preces are omitted at Compline.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at either Vespers. Mattins is reduced by two-thirds to one nocturn of three lessons. There is neither commemoration nor the Suffrage at Lauds. At Mass there is only one collect.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Third Sunday after the Epiphany


The third Sunday after the Epiphany is of semi-double rite and its liturgical colour is green. The Gospel pericopes from St. Matthew record the LORD healing the leper and the centurion's servant.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms appointed for Saturday were sung. The Office hymn was Jam sol recedit igneus. The antiphon on the Magnificat was Suscepit Deus. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of St. Agnes and of SS Vincent & Anastasius. The Suffrage of the Saints was omitted due to the double feasts and, for the same reason, at Compline the Dominical preces were not omitted.

At Mattins the invitatory is Adoremus Dominum and the hymn Primo die . Mattins has the usual three nocturns. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of St. Paul's Epistle to the Galatians. In the second nocturn the lessons are from an exposition of this Epistle to the Galatians by St. Augustine and in the third nocturn the homily is from St. Jerome. The Te Deum is sung. At Lauds the Office hymn is Aterne rerum conditor. After the collect of the Sunday a commemoration is of SS Vincent & Anastasius followed by the Suffrage of the Saints. At Prime both Quicumque and the Dominical preces are sung.

At Mass the Gloria is sung, the second collect is of SS Vincent & Anastasius, the third collect is Deus, qui salutis. The Credo is sung and the preface is that of the Blessed Trinity.

At Vespers the Office hymn is Lucis creator. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of the following feast of St. Raymund of Pennafort, of SS Vincent & Anastasius and of St. Emerentiana followed by the Suffrage of the Saints. At Compline the Dominical preces are sung.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at either Vespers. Mattins is cut down to a single nocturn of three lessons. At Lauds there are no commemorations nor Suffrage. At Prime both Quicumque and the Dominical preces are omitted. At Mass there is only a single collect. At Vespers there are no commemorations and the Dominical preces are omitted at Compline.

Art: Jerome Nadal

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Second Sunday after the Epiphany


The second 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. John's account of the Marriage Feast at Cana.

At Vespers yesterday afternoon the antiphons and psalms of Saturday were sung. The Office hymn was Jam sol recedit igneus. The antiphon on the Magnificat was Suscepit Deus. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations were sung of the preceding Office of St. Hiliary, of St. Paul the Hermit and of St. Maurus. The Suffrage was omitted as were the Dominical preces at Compline.

At Mattins the invitatory is Adoremus Dominum and this will be sung until Septuagesima. The Office hymn is Primo die and this is sung at Sunday Mattins until the first Sunday in Lent. In the first nocturn the lessons are the Incipit of the Second Epistle to the Corinthians. In the second nocturn a sermon of St. Chrysostom provides the lessons and, in the third nocturn, the homily is from St. Augustine. At Lauds the Office hymn is Aeterne and that too is sung at Sunday Lauds until the first Sunday of Lent. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of St. Paul and of St. Maurus. The Suffrage of the Saints is omitted. At Prime both Quicumque iand the Dominical preces. are omitted.

At Mass the Gloria is sung, the second collect is of St. Paul, the third collect is of St. Maurus. The Creed is sung and the preface is of the Blessed Trinity.

At Vespers the antiphons and psalms of Sunday are sung. The Office hymn is Lucis creator. After the collect of the Sunday commemorations are sung of the following feast of St. Marcellus and of St. Paul. The Suffrage is omitted as are the Dominical preces at Compline due to the occurring double feasts.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' there are no commemorations at Vespers. Mattins is reduced to a single nocturn of three lessons. There are no commemorations at Lauds. At Mass there is a single collect. At Vespers there are no commemorations.

Art: Jerome Nadal