Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Postscript to Breviary Revision , Welcome, Q&A

 To add to yesterday's post about the proposed changes to the breviary. It's important to realize that I only reported on what the various bishops stated were items proposed for revision in the breviary during discussion sessions.  Each of them spoke while referring to a booklet or folder which must been the complete proposed scope of the project.
There may well have been more changes, and more specific detail about the changes, in these booklets  that did not come up in the discussion. If anyone out there is friends with a bishop and can get a peak at that booklet, let me know!

One thing referenced in passing at the bishops meeting that I forgot to mention was the addition of extra antiphons for the gospel canticles on Sunday Evening Prayer I, Morning Prayer, and Evening Prayer II. There should be 3 different antiphons for each of these hours, for years A, B and  of the lectionary. This way, the gospel canticle antiphons will always reference the Sunday gospel of whatever year it is. (As the breviary stands now, we get one canticle each from year A, B and C, so only one antiphon each weekend actually matches the gospel. Some countries already have this complete cycle of antiphons in their breviaries. It will be great having it here in the USA.

Welcome new blog followers Matt, "DiTo32", an "dchris". Matt has a blog about books, especially liturgical books, and usually traditional liturgical books at that. He does very thorough and well illustrated reviews. It was partly due to one of his posts that I decided to shell out  for the Pauline editions  Kenyan breviary earlier this year. By using the Mundelein psalter for hymns and psalm tones, the Kenyan breviary for its Revised Grail Psalms and extra Sunday antiphons, and ibreviary for the concluding prayer, I'm already experiencing pretty much what the rest of America will have to wait five years for.

Okay, if anyone has  a question, either about the Bishops' decision on the breviary, or the usual stuff about how to pray the Divine Office correctly, then fire away. All questions are good questions.

11 comments:

  1. On solemnities and feasts the Psalms are always taken from Sunday Week 1. So if you have a feast in week 1 on a Tuesday, you read the Psalms you just read on Sunday. Why is it always the Psalms from week 1? And can you substitute Psalms from another Sunday?

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    1. We use Sunday week I psalmody for morning prayer on feasts and solemnities because the Church has decided that these are the psalms/canticle that are most expressive of the praises sung to the Lord by the sai--nts (e.g. the Canticle of the 3 children and psalm 149) AND of the intimate union with God that the saints sought while on earth and enjoy now in heaven (Psalm 63). That is why we use Sunday week I. Now, one thing that many people don't realize--and forgive me if you do realize it but I want to be sure--we are only supposed to use Sunday week I for days that are feasts and solemnities in the strict sense. For any saints days that say "memorial" "Optional memorial" or "commemoration" we are to use the regular psalms of the current weekday. The only exception to that is if the particular saint is a special patron of your diocese/parish/religious order, in which case his memorial would be observed as a feast. So in practice it is not that frequently that you are doing Sunday week I twice in a week. But if you are, hey! They are really beautiful psalms, especiallly 63, which IMHO is a psalm worth memorizing and praying frequently.

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    2. I have the St. Joseph's guide. And I find that the LotH is pretty clear when to use the Sunday week 1 Psalms. I'll double check next time. Thanks, that's a good explanation. So I assume then that you can't legitimately substitute another Sunday's Psalms because if you did it would be like substituting prayers in the Mass--it would not longer be the Church's liturgy, right?

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    3. Once in a while the St. Joseph guide has an error, so it's good to know the principles. Page 37 of the one-volume Christian prayer has a good summary. Also, some people get confused when the st. Joseph guide give the page# of a common for a saint's feast, and think that means to use the entire common, and not just the parts from reading onward.
      As to substituting some other psalms on occasion--this is a gray area. The General Instruction does state in several places that for Pastoral reasons different psalms or readings can be substituted. Of course, that implies there is someone in a position of authority to make that decision. Can lay people make these kinds of decisions in an authoritative way? Or does my decision to use a different set of psalms make my office cease to be a liturgical act and instead turn into merely a private devotional exercise--me deciding which psalms I want to use because I like them.

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  2. Most breviaries I've seen have a set of "festive" or "festival" psalms somewhere that are standard on feasts of a certain level or above. Often this is its own section, separate from the monthly or biweekly or weekly psalter. In the LotH, these are not in their own section but are given for Sunday Week I. Yes, it gets repetitive if there's a feast or solemnity right after an actual Sunday in Week 1, but this is an improvement on older breviaries where there were so many feasts, you hardly ever said any psalms beyond the Sunday ones. :)

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    1. By the way, I'm guessing here, but I think you have to use the Week I Sunday psalms and not those of another Sunday. Could be wrong.

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  3. I like that the antiphons for Gospel canticles will "cycle" and reinforce the Sunday Gospel during all those Hours!

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    1. Yes! It's my favorite feature of that African breviary I use. REally does keep you mindful of the gospel all weekend, instead of the eeney meeany miney moe system we have now where only one of the three antiphons each weekend fits the gospel.

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  4. James Ignatius McAuleyNovember 15, 2012 at 10:52 AM

    Daria,

    Info from the Source -- Father Samuel Weber does have the translation of the weekly and seasonal hymns from the Latin done, the collects are done (for the missal), but the ICEL boys do not see this being done in five years because of the review process and politics, as well as translations need to be done for the hymns associated with the sanctoral. The revised Franciscan propers may come next year, or the year after, or the year after . . .

    JIM

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    1. Yes, I'd figured that between what Fr.Weber had done for Mundelein Psalter and his Compline book, plus the work of Stanbrook Abbey, the hymns were mostly done. But ICEL is something like a labor union, isn't it? Doesn't matter if the work has been done by others, we have to pay them to do it. And at a pokey union worker's pace.

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  5. Is there no way to get around the ICEL?

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