Friday, February 15, 2013

Weekly Q&A - early lent edition

Here's wishing you had  a blessed Ash Wednesday. Mine was good, and hopefully a sign of a fruitful lent to come.

I'm delighted that so many of you are signed up for a chance at the book giveaway announced in my previous post. Winners will be drawn on Monday, and we'll have another giveaway of other titles before the month is over.

Several new followers have recently joined Coffee&Canticles. Welcome Kayla, Marco, Chris, Crispin, and Susan. And to others who follow through reader feeds, glad to have you here.

Other news, I'm a guest columnist this month at the Knights of Columbus' Fathers for Good website.  When you're through with the article I linked, please spend some time exploring this excellent site for men. (And mostly by men.)

One more thing. Lent is a great time to ramp up your practice of the Liturgy  of the Hours: to add one extra hour, and/or to be more consistent with the ones you already pray. Or, to set aside extra time so that you can linger a bit more  over the psalms and readings.

Okay, you know the drill. It's your official weekly chance to ask questions on all things Divine Office. To head off one common inquiry this time of year: use week IV of the psalter for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of this week. Use it up to the conclusion of the psalms, and then turn to the Proper of Seasons to find what you need for the reading onward. Sts. Cyril and Methodius is an optional memorial tomorrow. It is your choice to skip them and stick with the lenten weekday proper, OR to add in  the elements given for them  in the proper of saints.

Fire away!

10 comments:

  1. Why don't we pray the Te Deum in the Office of Readings on Sundays during Lent? And, on a related note, why don't we pray it during weekdays of Ordinary Time?

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  2. I think the Te Deum is on a par with Gloria in excelsis. If it's a day on which you wouldn't use the Gloria in excelsis at Mass, then you wouldn't use Te Deum in the Office. But that's just my guess...I could be wrong.

    In Anglican liturgy, as a side note, Te Deum and the Benedictus are the two standard Morning Prayer canticles (which makes sense, as the Book of Common Prayer combines Matins and Lauds to make Morning Prayer), but in Advent and Lent the Te Deum gives way to the Benedicite omnia opera Domini (All ye works of the Lord, praise ye the Lord). Still a great hymn of praise, but just a different one for the purple seasons.

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  3. Chris, the Te Deum is an ancient hym dating back to the fourth century. It has, clearly, a post-resurrectional, triumphant feel to it that tradtion has judged is not appropriate for Sundays of lent. Similar to, as Scott points out, the Gloria at Mass. SCott's description of the Anglican tradition confirms this same idea. This link from the Catholic encyclopedia will tell you all you need to know and more about the Te Deum: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/14468c.htm
    although keep in mind that this was written before the Divine Office was revised by the second Vatican Council, so not everything is says applies today.

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  4. Hi Daria,

    Thanks for the welcome. I'm happy to say that I have been keeping up with my hours thus far! I use the audio from my Divine Office app in conjunction with my Christian Prayer book. I find it helps me by following the audio by reading along as well as responding and singing the hymms too. I have some questions:

    1. I know I saw this question before on your site but can't find your answer to it but regarding the colored ribbons of the books. They have no significance right? I have similar colored ribbons on my Missal and thought the colors related to the liturgical season. What is the easiest way to use the ribbons to make flipping back and forth easy?

    2. Sometimes the pages listed in my St. Joseph's Guide for a particular hour conflict with the listed pages in my Divine Office app. I usually follow what is listed on the app for my Christian Prayer book. Any reason for this?

    That's it for now. My hours these past few days since Lent bagan have been very fulfilling and I find myself looking forward to my time spent with the LotH. Thank you again for being a great source of information. God bless.

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    1. Good questions, and ones that have not been addressed for a while. Answers:
      1. The ribbon colors have no liturgical significance whatever. What I do with mine is keep one in the psalter, one in the proper of seasons (front third of the book), one at Night Prayer, and one in the proper of saints. That leaves one more which you may want to use either in the hymn section, the commons, or some other place of your preference.

      2.I haven't used the St. Joseph's guide for years, partly because of these occasional problems. One reason for the differences between the guide and digital breviaries is that for saints memorials there are several legitimate options, and St. Joseph's guide simply makes a different choice of option than the Divine Office app does. But occasionally the St. Joseph's guide is simply in error. Typos, perhaps. In any event, I think its good to wean oneself away from the St. Joseph's guide and learn to figure out on one's own which pages to use.

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  5. Thanks for the replies, Scott and Daria!

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  6. ...I've been scouring the blog and Google+ trying to figure out where/how to send you a message, but I guess a comment in the Q&A is as good as I'm going to get.

    I just wanted to ask if you've seen the pdf of liturgical resources for use during this time before Papa Benedict's resignation takes effect, and during the time of election of a new Pope. I was craving some sort of prayer to add to the intercessions of Lauds and Vespers, and the PDF has some nice information on doing this.

    http://www.usccb.org/about/leadership/holy-see/pope-benedict-xvi/upload/Pope-Resignation-Resources.pdf

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    1. Hey, Geeklady, I only caught this comment today--I must have been distracted over the weekend. I have seen this link and I agree that adding one or two of the intercessions to vespers would be a great idea. ibreviary is recommending that this be done at vespers, which is when the petitions are more likely to be for specific persons or groups of people (pope, the sick, priests, the poor, the faithful departed). MP petitions are more related to praise, virtue, grace needed for the day). It would be a great idea to make a copy of the intercessions and tuck them into the breviary for daily use. I think it also possible to use the collect now and then as well for the concluding prayer, although not at every hour since the seasonal prayers for lent would take precedence.

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  7. Hi, please help me understand how to use this PDF file. am I to use the collect? I have held our Holy Father in prayer since the announcement was made. Resigned now, less tearful. I am SO trusting in Jesus for our next Shepherd. I know our Lord will never leave us orphans.

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    1. Check my reply to the comment above: I think using one of the intercessions each day at Evening Prayer would be the best use of these suggested prayers.
      Be not afraid! Or tearful! Jesus is in charge, and that's the thought to cling to.

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