Friday, 24 October 2008

Practicalities -Terce, Sext and None

So far we have looked at the Hours of Vespers and Lauds. We have noted that the structure of those Hours is essentially the same with opening rites, five antiphons and psalms, a chapter, hymn, versice and response, antiphon on the NT canticle, NT canticle, (preces on certain penitential days only), commemorations and closing rites.

The 'Little' Hours of Terce, Sext and None all share exactly the same structure and that structure closely resembles that of Vespers and Lauds but with only three psalms, no NT canticle, no commemorations and the hymn is in a different place.

Using Sunday's feast of Christ the King as an example here is a 'dissection' of Terce:

(Aperi, Domine;)

Pater noster & Ave Maria (said inaudibly);

Deus in adjutorium.., Domine, ad adjuvandum..., Gloria Patri..., Sicut erat..., Alleluia (or Laus tibi... in Septuagesima and Lent);

The hymn at Terce is Nunc, Sancte, nobis, Spriritus.

After the hymn the fragment of the second antiphon from Lauds is sung, Dedit ei Dominus, as far as the asterisk. Then the Psalm (or strictly speaking in this case stanzas from the same psalm) is sung. For Sundays and feasts this is always Ps.118(iii), Legem pone mihi.... At the end of the stanza the Doxology is sung but the antiphon is NOT repeated here. Instead the next 'psalm' is intoned Ps.118(iv) Memor esto... then its Doxology and then the third 'psalm' Ps.118(v) Bonitatem fecisti... then its Doxology and then the antiphon Dedit ei Dominus is sung in full, ending with linguae ipsi servient.

After the singing of the antiphon the chapter is read. The chapter is taken from the proper texts for the feast Fratres: Gratias agimus Deo regnum Filii dilectionis suae . The choir responds Deo gratias.

Next, a responsory, also from the proper, follows, Data est mihi... This is followed by the versicle Afferte Domino, familiae populorum and then the response Afferte Domino, gloriam et imperium;

Dominus vobiscum (or Domine exaudi orationem meam) and response then Oremus and then the collect Omnipotens sempiterne Deus... etc.

The greeting is repeated then Benedicamus Domino etc. In Choral service the Asperges ceremony before High Mass follows immediately, the choir remaing in their place. In private recitation Fidelium animae is said in a low voice.

Sext and None follow exactly the same structure. At Sext the third antiphon from Lauds is sung and at None the fifth antiphon. The chapters and responsories being taken from the proper of the feast and the rest of Ps 118 is sung.

At the 'Little' Hours the antiphon is never sung in full before the psalmody whatever the rank of Office. There are never any commemorations at the 'Little' Hours either.

Next week we will 'dissect' another 'Little' Hour when the common or ferial texts are used for illustration.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the outstanding posts