Monday, March 13, 2017

Table of Liturgical Precedence, or, Do We Do 1st Vespers of St. Joseph on Sunday night?

Whenever a Solemnity laps up against a Sunday (occurring on a Saturday or a Monday) we who navigate the breviary on our own have to stop and figure out what to do.

Yes, yes, I know about the St. Joseph's yearly guide you can buy. But most of  us want to understand the principle of the thing so that we can figure this out for ourselves, rather than blindly following someone else's instructions of "psalter, page XXX, proper of seasons, page YYY, common of male martyrs with red hair and freckles,  page ZZZ."    And let me tell you, that St. Joseph's guide occasionally gets it wrong, too. And sometimes the online breviaries goof up as well. Not often, but every once in a while.

Anyway, next Monday is the Solemnity of St. Joseph. A big deal. Does that mean we do Evening Prayer I of St Joseph this Sunday night? *

Or,

Suppose the Assumption comes on a Saturday. Do we have Evening Prayer II of the Assumption that evening, or Evening Prayer II of whatever August Sunday in ordinary time that happens to be?**

The answers, my friend, are NOT blowin' in the wind. (If you get that reference you are well over 50 years old.) The answers are to be found in the Table of Liturgical Days According to Order of Precedence.

Those of us lucky enough to have a four-volume breviary will find this in the beginning of volume I, just after the General Instruction. But it's a pain to have to go find your volume I (Advent/Christmas) book in the middle of lent when you are using Volume III. And if you only have a single volume breviary,you don't have this wonderfully clarifying resource at your fingertips.

So instead, go to this link, courtesy of Benedictines who understand our problems.  Print it, if you can, and tuck it into your breviary for future reference.

*No
**Yes

24 comments:

  1. Off-Topic: Is it possible to combine the Expanded Office of Readings and Lauds on Sunday?

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    1. If by "expanded" you mean including Vigils, the answer is no, because vigils is meant strictly for Saturday night, or maybe midnight. It's character is that of a night office, so there needs to be a separation from Lauds.

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    2. Thanks for the Reply. I did it the other day at 5 in the Morning ending with the Angelus,but it didn't hurt me a bit. But I will heed your admonition from now on.

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    3. Well, you can do anything you like and it has value as an act of devotion, as reading of Sacred Scripture. It just doesn't work as liturgy.

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    4. P.S I based my Question on Paragraph 99 of the General Instruction on the Liturgy of The Hours.

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  2. Are you sure that such combination is not in keeping with the Letter and Spirit of Paragraph 99? I am really confused!

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    1. Forgive me, I must have understood your original question. Let's go back a bit. What do you mean by "expanded" Office of Readings? That word is probably where the misunderstanding came in. It is always possible to combine Office of Readings with Lauds on any day. But that word "expanded" made me think you were talking about something more.

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    2. First I recited the First Reading and it's Responsary followed by the Old Testament Canticles. Later I Recited the Second Reading and it's Responsary followed by the MR Psalmody. Finally,I Recited the Vigil Gospel after the Responsary.

      Having Said this,I will follow next Sunday This particular rubric of that "the prayer and conclusion are omitted and in the hour following the introductory verse with the Glory to the Father is omitted".

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    3. Take a look at Paragraphs 70 thru 73. My understanding is that use of Vigils is strictly for use during the night. So I don't believe that using the Office of Vigils at 5am conforms to either the letter of the spirit. But the regular Office of Readings (without the vigils extras) may be done any time and it is often combined with Morning Prayer.

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    4. So I must Recite the Office of Readings as a Stand Alone Office on weekday nights too? The Reasons I did such combination is because that there is No Prime anymore and to give me some free time between that and Mid-Morning Prayer. BTW,I am beginning to Recite a Complete LOTH on Sundays so as to make The Mass(09:30 A.M) the Centre of it.

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    5. 73. Further, since in the Roman Rite the office of readings is always of a uniform brevity, especially for the sake of those engaged in apostolic work, those who desire, in accordance with tradition, to extend the celebration of the vigils of Sundays, solemnities, and feasts should do so as follows.

      First, the office of readings is to be celebrated as in The Liturgy of the Hours up to the end of the readings. After the two readings and before the Te Deum canticles should be added from the special appendix of The Liturgy of the Hours. Then the gospel should be read; a homily on the gospel may be added. After this the Te Deum is sung and the prayer said.

      On solemnities and feasts the gospel is to be taken from the Lectionary for Mass; on Sundays, from the series on the paschal mystery in the appendix of The Liturgy of the Hours.

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    6. You can find vigils on iBreviary.

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    7. Michael: I use iBreviary on my iPad every day of My Life as an Aspie PWD Catholic Man. I have read the General Instruction carefully and I am not impressed with its Sight Vaugeness of it. At least In the EF Breviary,I can combine Matins and Lauds together.

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    8. You can also combine the Office of Readings with Morning Prayer.
      99. If the office of readings comes immediately before another hour of the office, then the appropriate hymn for that hour may be sung at the beginning of the office of readings. At the end of the office of readings the prayer and conclusion are omitted and in the hour following the introductory verse with the Glory to the Father is omitted.

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    9. Yes. It is Good to Remember that always. Pray that I may worthily sanctify Each and Every Day of My Life with the Liturgy of The Hours,especially on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation. The Opus Dei(Holy Sacrifice of The Mass and The Divine Office) is the Centre of My Daily Routines.

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  3. How many people on here would say 9pm is too late to say vespers if one takes up a hobby that goes from 6.30 till 8.30? Thanks.

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    1. Thank heaven, the Church in its documents does not specify a strict schedule. And it certainly urges laity who pray the hours to adapt it to their particular situations in life. (I could look up chapter and verse on that, but am feeling a little lazy at the moment.) If you look up schedules at the stricter monasteries you will find that they say Vespers around 4 pm, but that is because they might say Compline and go to bed by 8pm (and rise for the morning at 4am!) With that schedule, 4pm will clearly feel like evening and the end of the day's labor. But for us, the day might look quite different. If someone habitually stays up til midnight or later, then 9pm vespers would be as many hours before Compline as it is for the monks who do vespers at 4 and go to bed at 8. Not that there has to be so many hours of separation between the two. You could even do vespers and compline together if you wish and I've seen a lot of that at monasteries as well. I also have readers here who work night shifts and say vespers when they return home at 6am and compline before their bedtime at 9am.

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  4. Next Sunday at 03:00 A.M,I will do the Office of Readings and Morning Prayer in the following order:

    Invitatory
    Hymn
    Office of Readings Psalmody
    First Reading
    Second Reading
    Old Testament Canticles
    Gospel Reading
    Morning Prayer Psalmody
    Reading and Responsary
    Canticle of Zechariah
    Intercessions
    Our Father
    Concluding Prayer and Acclamation.

    Now,The Rubrics are strictly followed for good.

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    1. Sounds wonderful. God bless you for being willing to rise so early. That in itself is a great lenten penance.

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  5. The "Order" that I just outlined above is based on the Following Paragraph:
    "If the office of readings comes immediately before another hour of the office, then the appropriate hymn for that hour may be sung at the beginning of the office of readings. At the end of the office of readings the prayer and conclusion are omitted and in the hour following the introductory verse with the Glory to the Father is omitted"(General Instruction on the Liturgy of The Hours 99).

    God Bless You for the Kind Words and Motherly Advice. Waking up early is what St. Josémaría Escríva calls it "The Heroic Minute".

    I am Trying Now to observe the Complete Divine Office on Sundays(Evening Prayer I,Night Prayer I,Office of Readings/Morning Prayer,Mid-Morning Prayer,Midday Prayer,Mid-Afternoon Prayer,Evening Prayer II and Night Prayer II),not to mention Hearing Mass after Terce/Mid-Morning Prayer like most Benedictine,Cistercian/Trappist,Carthusian and Camaldolese Monks.

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    1. I'm glad you are only doing Every single hour on Sundays. I've known people who try to do it all every single day and in most cases it becomes too stressful trying to fit this in with the demands of their work, etc. and then they become discouraged. We should always guard against liturgical prayer becoming a burden.

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    2. Typo: I should have Said I will try to Recite Evening Prayer I and Night Prayer I on Saturdays and the Complete Divine Office the next day. I have a Broader Take on The Sacred Liturgy(Read: The Holy Sacrifice of The Mass and The Divine Office together as One Prayer of The Mystical Body)in My Personal Spirituality. In other words,It is the "Source and Summit" of My Personal Relationship with The Most Blessed and Undivided Trinity who is Our One God alone.

      Perhaps the following link(as an Aside)can help you Understand where I am coming from:
      http://www.newliturgicalmovement.org/2014/09/the-ironic-outcome-of-benedictine.html#.WMq5XvDXef0

      P.S Likewise on weekdays I will try to Recite the Office of Readings/Morning Prayer,Evening Prayer and Night Prayer as I can.

      Peace and Blessings,Many Thanks.

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