Thursday, September 5, 2013

Welcome New People + Q&A+ Contest!

To Oscar, Maria, and Kyle: Welcome. Feel free to comment any time you like.

But this post has the specific purpose of inviting questions from confused psalm-sayers about any part of the Liturgy of the Hours that they don't quite understand. You may query about the different types of breviaries available if you are trying to decide on a purchase. Or you might want to answer someone else's question if you think you know the answer.

While we're at it, here's a short quiz on September saints. See if you can answer completely from memory, or, at the most, after consulting the calendar for names but not doing any further research. Each answer requires both a "who" and a "what"

1. This saint is patron of an unpopular profession.
2. This saint had one part of his body referred to as "golden"
3. This feast commemorates a saint's archaelogical discovery.
4. This saint did not like St. Augustine very much.
5. This saint performs a yearly miracle.

Tell you what. Don't put the answers here below. Email them to me at   thesockeys"at"gmail"dot"com
(using the correct symbols for at and dot, I just wrote it that way to avoid being spammed.)  I will do a drawing from the names of those who get them all correct, and the winner will get a free copy of either The Everyday Catholic's Guide to the Liturgy of the Hours OR A Garden of Visible Prayer by Margaret Rose Realy. Please specify which one you'd prefer. And give me your mailing address.

Have fun.


  1. I just recently purchased 2/3 volumes of the Divine Office here in the UK and I'm so excited to start using them (when they arrive LOL)!

    1. Wonderful! Many of us yanks are envious of you Brits because your breviary uses scripture readings from the RSV and Jerusalem Bibles.

    2. But the intercessions for the American breviary seems better!
      I have a q - Do you say the Invitatory with the Office of Readings if you're pray it the night before (after Compline)?

    3. Good question. My understanding is that the Invitatory is for the first hour you pray at the start of the day--the morning. So if you do the OOR as a vigil on the previous evening, you don't say the Invitatory. Instead, save it for Morning Prayer.

  2. I have a couple questions (hopefully not to silly),

    Today is the Feast of the Birth of Mary. Since today is a Sunday, is this not celebrated in the LOTH this year?

    What is the best way to subscribe to your blog for someone on Google?

    p.s. My daughter started 1st grade SRE today, and she is using one of your textbooks!

    1. I think it's a good question. You are right that we may not celebrate the office of the Nativity of Mary today. It is a feast. And unlike a solemnity that falls on a Sunday, it would not "officially" be transferred to the following Monday. However, since one may--for a good local or devotional reason--say a votive office of the Blessed Virgin Mary on any weekday that is not a solemnity or a day of holy week or octave of Easter, I believe I'm interpreting the General Instruction properly when I say that you could fittingly celebrate Our Lady's birth tomorrow. (But start tomorrow morning, not with vespers tonight.)

      As for the best way to follow this blog from Google? I'm not sure. If you click "Join this site" where all the pictures are above, I'm not sure what happens beyond getting a picture added to the gallery and the (for me) satisfaction of seeing number of follower go up. If you want to get my posts in your email, scroll down below the posts and use the "follow by email" option. I've also got a widget on the top left for an RSS feed, which I think is what you want if you used to use Google reader and now use a substitute like Feedly, but I'm really a little vague on the technical details.

  3. Hello from Croatia! I have a question regarding antiphon on Benedictus for feast of Nativity of Blessed Virgin Mary. In Croatian breviaty, and also in Latin, it is the same as troparion (hymn of the day) of that feast in Byzantine rite (both Orthodox and Byzantine Catholic). How it is possible? I didn't find any similar thing in breviary. Maybe authors of Vatican II liturgical reform wanted to introduce some elements from Byzantine breviry into Roman one?

  4. It is quite possible that the Vatican II reformers sought to bring in some ancient eastern prayers. I wonder if they have done it anywhere else in the breviary. Maybe the place to look would be other feasts that are among the most ancient. Since I am not very familiar with the Byzantine tradition, I wouldn't recognize an eastern-based antiphon if I saw one. If you every spot any others, let us know.

  5. Daria, there are several such antiphons usually for feasts that originated in the East and then spread to the West. Many older, initially Eastern, feasts have some of these antiphons: Holy Cross, Mother of God, Baptism, Epiphany, Presentation....

    In the older Roman Breviary, it was an antiphon at Second Vespers but the reformers moved it to Lauds - I guess to better fit the theme of the rising sun.