Friday, 17 September 2010

Ember Friday - The Impression of the Stigmata of St Francis

Today is the Ember Friday in September, it is also the double feast of the Impression of the Stigmata of St. Francis. The liturgical colour of the feast is white.

At first Vespers yesterday a commemoration was sung of the preceding Office of SS Cornelius and Cyprian. In the Office hymm, Iste Confessor, a line in the first verse is proper to the feast.

At Mattins the lessons in the first nocturn are proper to the feast with the responsories from the Common. In the second nocturn the lessons are taken from a commentary of St. Bonaventure. In the third nocturn the homily is from St. Gregory the Great on St. Matthew's Gospel. The ninth lesson is of the Ember Friday and is also a homily from St. Gregory, but on St. Luke's Gospel (its three lessons may be read as one but the first suffices). A commemoration of the Ember Friday is sung at Lauds after the collect of the feast.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria is sung, the second collect is of the Ember Friday and the last Gospel that of the Ember Friday. Private Masses may be of the Ember Friday (the Ember Friday Masses do not have additional OT lessons unlike those of Wednesday and Saturday). The Mass is proper and celebrated in violet vestments, the ministers wearing folded chasubles. The feast of St. Francis is commemorated, Benedicamus Domino is sung as the dismissal.

In Cathedral and Collegiate Churches two Masses are celebrated. The Mass of the feast takes place after Terce without any commemorations or additional collects. The Mass of the Ember Day, with the ministers wearing folded chasubles, is sung after None with the second collect A cunctis the third at the choice of the Dean and Benedicamus Domino as the dismissal.

Vespers are first Vespers of St. Joseph of Cupertino with a commemoration sung of the preceding Office of the Impression of the Stigmata of St Francis. Ember Days are not commemorated at Vespers as their Office runs from Mattins to None inclusive.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' the Ember Friday is postponed to next week. The feast of the Impression of the Stigmata of St. Francis has been reduced to a commemoration in the ferial Office so three nocturns and the change in Iste Confessor etc vanish. The liturgical colour is green. Vespers on Thursday were of SS Cornelius and Cyprian with no commemorations. Mattins, with the lessons from the second week of September not the third, has but one nocturn. The feast of the Impression of the Stigmata of St. Francis is commemorated at Lauds. Vespers are ferial withhout a commemoration of the following Office. If today were an Ember Day in the 'Extraordinary Form' of the New Rite its antiphon on the Benedictus is used again at Vespers as antiphon on the Magnificat. Quite remarkably, and of course a complete committee-work fabrication, Ember Wednesdays and Fridays in the 'EF' get Vespers - how traditional is that?

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