Friday, 1 November 2013

All Saints

The feast of All Saints is a Double of the First Class with an Octave. The universal celebration of this feast developed from the dedication of the Pantheon to St. Mary and the Martyrs. This dedication took place on May 13th, 610. In some places, and the in Byzantine East to this day, a celebration of All Saints took place after Trinity Sunday. The celebration of the feast spread and Gregory IV transferred the feast and dedication to November 1st in 835. Louis the Pious spread the celebration throughout his empire and the feast entered the Universal Calendar. Sixtus IV gave the feast an Octave in the fifteenth century. The liturgical colour for the feast, and its octave, is white.

At Mattins the invitatory is proper to the feast and octave, Regem regum Dominum venite adoremus, Quia ipse est corona Sanctorum omnium, and the Office hymn is Placare, Christe, servulis. In the first nocturn the antiphons Novit Dominus etc are sung with psalms 1, 4 & 8. The lessons are taken from the book of the Apocalypse. In the second nocturn the antiphons Domine, qui operati etc are sung with psalms 14, 23 & 31 and the lessons are taken from a sermon of the Venerable Bede. In the third nocturn the antiphons Timete Dominum etc are sung with psalms 33, 60 & 96. The homily on St. Matthew's Gospel is from St. Augustine. The Te Deum is sung. At Lauds the antiphons Vidi turbam magnam etc are sung with the Sunday psalms (Pss. 99, 92, 62, Benedicite & 148) and the Office hymn is Salutis aeterne dator.

At Prime the antiphon Vidi turbam magnum is sung with the festal psalms (Pss. 53, 118i & 118ii), the lectio brevis is proper to the feast, Benedictio et claritas,. At the other Hours the same antiphons from Lauds are sung with the Dominical psalms.

Mass is sung after Terce. The Gloria and Creed are sung.

At second Vespers the antiphons Vidi turbam magnam etc are sung with psalms 109, 110, 111, 112 & 115. After Benedicamus Domino the verse Fidelium is omitted and the choir sits as the festive white is removed and is exchanged for the black of mourning. Vespers of the Dead are then sung in choir. These begin with the antiphon Placebo Domino in regione vivorum. Psalms 114, 119, 120, 129 and 127 are sung. Requiem aeternam etc is sung at the end of each psalm in place of Gloria Patri etc. After the psalms there is a versicle and response but no hymn. After the antiphon on the Magnificat the choir kneels for a Pater noster, some versicles and the collect. Following the 1911-13 reform Compline takes a special form, created in the 1911-13 reform, 'Compline of the Dead' with psalms 122, 141 and 142.

In the 'liturgical books of 1962' at Prime the lectio brevis is of the season and at the Little Hours the antiphons are doubled. Vespers of All Saints are sung but not Vespers of the Dead as they, rather strangely, get treated as Vespers of All Soul's Day. Sunday Compline is sung. The Octave (and the Vigil) have been abolished.


Joshua said...

Was it ever the custom to sing the Litanies of the Saints in procession on the feast of All Saints as a special observance appropriate to the day?

PseudonymousposterJohn said...

And if one DID wish to follow the older practice and add the votive office of the dead to the day in the Octave, one would begin with Vespers of the Dead this evening following those of the Feast?
Tomorrow one would need at least a Leo XIII Breviary for the mattins lessons and then again, presumably say the Mattins and Lauds of the Dead immediately after those of the Second day in the Octave.
Sounds simple. Can that be right?

Rubricarius said...


I cannot recall evidence of the praxis off hand but would suspect something like that has happened somewhere, sometime. It does seem so highly appropriate.


Yes, with the excepted praxis described in the Caeremoniale where Vespers, Mattins and Lauds of the Dead are sung together as one, aggregated, service.