Traditional Benedictine Office - Ordo for third week after Pentecost (June 25-July 1)


Sunday 25 June – Third Sunday after Pentecost

Matins: All as in the psalter with readings and responsories of the Sunday

Lauds to Vespers: Canticle antiphons and collect, MD 462-3*

Monday 26 June - Class IV; SS John and Paul, Memorial [EF: Class III]

Collect, MD 463*; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [167]

Tuesday 27 June - Class IV

Collect, MD 463*

Wednesday 28 June - Vigil of SS Peter and Paul, Class II

Matins: All as in the psalter except for three readings and responsories, and collect of the feast 

Lauds to None: All as in the psalter for the day except for the collect, MD [166-7]

Vespers: I Vespers of SS Peter and Paul, MD [167] ff 

Thursday 29 June – SS Peter and Paul, Class I

Matins: All from the Common of Apostles except for the readings and responsories, of the feast

Lauds: Antiphons and proper texts of the feast, MD [169] ff with festal psalms

Prime to None: Antiphons etc of feast; collect MD [171]

Vespers (of the feast): Antiphons and psalms from Common of Apostles, MD (13), Magnificat antiphon MD [173] 

Friday 30 June - Commemoration of St Paul, Class III; commemoration of St Peter

Matins: Invitatory antiphon and hymn of the feast, one reading of the feast

Lauds: Antiphons and proper texts of the feast, MD [173] ff with festal psalms; note two collects under one ending

Prime to None: Antiphon etc of the feast

Vespers: Antiphons of Lauds; psalms from common of Apostles, MD (13); rest from MD [178-9]


Saturday 1 July  Saturday of Our Lady [EF: The Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Class I]

Matins: As for Office of Our Lady with reading for Saturday 1 in July

Lauds to None: Office of Our Lady, MD (129) ff

I Vespers of Fourth Sunday after Pentecost, MD 445*

St Romuald OSB (June 19; Feb 7)

Fr Angelico

Today is the feast of St Romuald in some calendars - in the 1962 calendar his feast is celebrated in Feburary, but he actually died on June 19 and his feast has been restored to the date in most modern calenars.  The Martyrology says:
At Ravenna, St. Romuald, anchoret, founder of the monks of Carnaldoli, who restored and greatly extended monastic discipline, which was much relaxed in Italy. He is also mentioned on the 7th of February.
You can read more about the saint here.

Traditional Benedictine Office - Ordo for second week after Pentecost (June 18 - 24)

The notes below are designed to help you say one or more hours from the Benedictine Office according to the 1962-3 rubrics.

The page references are to the 2004 and later editions published by Farnborough Abbey, so if you are using an earlier edition of the Diurnal, the Antiphonale Monasticum or a breviary, you may need to hunt around a bit to get them to line up.

If you are new to the Benedictine Office, start here.

The Office this week

The Office this week is of time throughout the year, using the texts to be found in the psalter section of your Diurnal.

The collect used at the hours apart from Prime and Compline from Monday up until and including Thursday is of the second Sunday after Pentecost.

The key feasts are of the Sacred Heart on Friday, which displaces the Vigil of St John the Baptist, and the Nativity of John the Baptist on Saturday.

Matins notes (Note: Matins is not in the Diurnal)

As usual, the Matins readings and responsories for Sunday and feasts can be found over at the the Lectio Divina Notes Blog.

Second Sunday after Pentecost: As for all Sundays after Pentecost, the best source for everything except the readings is the Clear Creek Matins booklet (English and Latin), supplemented by the book of Liturgical Readings (or the texts provided on my Lectio Divina Notes blog).

If you want to sing some or all of the hour, the hymn, invitatory and antiphons can be found in the Peter Standhofe Psalterium PDF (see the resources collection on the Benedictine Matins Blog) and sources for the responsories can be found on the Benedictine Responsory Blog.

Feast of the Sacred Heart: Those saying Matins (not in the Diurnal) and/or using older breviaries should note that the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus seems to have received a makeover after Pope Pius XI raised it to the equivalent of a solemnity in 1928.

The result is that the antiphons and responsories for the feast provided in the Liber Responsorialis are not the same as those set out in the 1963 breviary, and the feast in the monastic form is not available on Divinum Officium.

The net result is that while some of the chants and texts are available from the Nocturnale Romanum, and the invitatory antiphon and hymn can be found in the Liber Hymnarius, some are missing.  I've provided a set of texts and listed sources for the chants of the responsories that I have been able to locate here. but that still leaves a few responsories and antiphons unaccounted for, so if anyone knows of a source for these, please do let me know!

Nativity of St John the Baptist: The chants and texts for the feast (including a listing of the proper psalms) other than the readings can be found in the Liber Responsorialis (download from CC Watershed) from page 345; translations of the readings can be found in the Liturgical Readings book.  Not all of the readings for the feast are available online, but those that are can be found arranged as for the Benedictine Office  on the Lectio Divina Notes blog.


NOTES ON THE ORDO


Sunday 18 June – Second Sunday after Pentecost, Class II

Matins: All as in the psalter with readings and responsories of the Sunday

Lauds: Psalm scheme 1 (50, 117, 62); Hymn Ecce iam noctis, MD 55; canticle antiphon and collect, MD 461-2*

Prime to None: As for throughout the year on Sunday

Vespers: As throughout the year in the psalter, collect and canticle antiphon, MD 462*

Monday 19 June - Class IV; St Gervase and Protase, Memorial [EF: St Juliana Falcionieri]

All as in the psalter for time throughout the year, collect of the Second Sunday after Pentecost, MD 432*; for the commemorations at Lauds, MD [157]

Tuesday 20 June – Class IV [EF: Commemoration of St Silverius]

Collect, MD 432*

Wednesday 21 June - Class IV; St Aloysius Gonzaga, memorial

Collect, MD 432*; for the commemoration, MD [157-8]

Thursday 22 June - Class IV [EF: ST Paulinus]

Matins to None: Collect, MD 432*

I Vespers of the Sacred Heart, MD 432* ff

Friday 23 June – Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Class I

Matins: All of the feast, with three Nocturns

Lauds: Antiphons and other texts of the feast with festal psalms, MD 439* ff; for the memorial, MD [158]

Prime to None: Antiphons etc of the feast, MD 442* ff

Vespers: Antiphons of the feast, MD 443-4* with psalms of I Vespers of Corpus Christi, MD 419*; texts for the Sacred Heart, MD 444*; commemoration of St John the Baptist, MD [161]

Saturday 24 June - Nativity of St John the Baptist, Class I

Matins: All of the feast, with three Nocturns

Lauds:  Festal psalms of Sunday; antiphons etc of the feast, MD [161] ff

Prime: Antiphon 1 of Lauds

Terce to None: Antiphons etc, MD [164-5]

Vespers: Antiphons, chapter, responsory, hymn and versicle of Lauds; Psalms from I Vespers of Apostles, MD (2); Magnificat antiphon, MD [165]; commemoration of the Sunday MD 445*

Feast of Corpus Christi



St Augustine tells us that:

By use of meat and drink men would fain that " they shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more," and yet there is but one Meat and one Drink, Which doth work in them that feed thereon that " this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal put on immortality,"  namely communion with that general assembly and Church of God's holy children, who are "kept in perfect peace," and are "all one," fully and utterly.

And therefore it is, as men of God before our time have taken it, that our Lord Jesus Christ hath set before us His Body and His Blood in the likeness of things which, from being many, are reduced into one. In one loaf are many grains of corn, and one cup of wine the juice of many grapes.

And now He giveth us to know how that which He spake cometh to pass, and how indeed "this Man can give us His Flesh to eat," and His Blood to drink. "He that eateth My Flesh, and drinketh My Blood, dwelleth in Me, and I in him." To dwell in Christ, therefore, and to have Him dwelling in us, is to "eat of that Bread and drink of that Cup."...

Tuesday of St Benedict: June readings



The readings for the old votive Office of St Benedict on Tuesday in June are as follows:

Reading 1: From the First Letter of St Paul to the Corinthians - But, as it is written: That eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, what things God hath prepared for them that love him. But to us God hath revealed them, by his Spirit. For the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, but the spirit of a man that is in him? So the things also that are of God no man knoweth, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of this world, but the Spirit that is of God; that we may know the things that are given us from God. Which things also we speak, not in the learned words of human wisdom; but in the doctrine of the Spirit, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the sensual man perceiveth not these things that are of the Spirit of God; for it is foolishness to him, and he cannot understand, because it is spiritually examined. But the spiritual man judgeth all things; and he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

Reading 2: From the Second Book of the Dialogues of St Gregory the Great, Chapter Sixteen - At the same time a certain clergyman, that served in the church of Aquinum, was possessed: whom the venerable man Constantius, Bishop of the same city, sent unto many places of holy martyrs for help: but God's holy martyrs would not deliver him, to the end that the world might know what great grace was in the servant of God, Benedict: wherefore at length he was brought unto him, who, praying for help to Jesus Christ our Lord, did forthwith cast the old enemy out of the possessed man's body, giving him this charge: "Go your way, and hereafter abstain from eating of flesh, and presume not to enter into holy orders, for whensoever you shall attempt any such thing, the devil again will have power over you." The man departed safe and sound, and because punishment fresh in memory useth to terrify the mind, he observed for a time what the man of God had given him in commandment. But after many years, when all his seniors were dead, and he saw his juniors preferred before him to holy orders, he neglected the words of the man of God, as though forgotten through length of time, and took upon him holy orders: whereupon straightways the devil that before had left him entered again, and never gave over to torment him, until he had separated his soul from his body.

Reading 3: [Peter] This holy man, as I perceive, did know the secret counsel of God: for he saw that this clergyman was delivered to the power of the devil, to the end he should not presume to enter into holy orders.  [Gregory] Why should he not know the secrets of God, who kept the commandments of God: when as the scripture saith: He that cleaveth unto our Lord, is one spirit with him? Holy men, in that they be one with our Lord are not ignorant of his sense: for the same Apostle saith For what man knoweth those things which belong to man, but the spirit of man which is in him? Even so, the things which belong to God, no man knoweth, but the spirit of God. And to show also that he knew such things as belong to God, he addeth straight after: But we have not received the spirit of this world, but the spirit which is of God. And for this cause, again he saith: that eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, nor it hath ascended into the heart of man, those things which God hath prepared for them that love him, but God hath revealed to us by his spirit.

Traditional Benedictine Ordo - First week after Pentecost (including Trinity Sunday (June 11 - 17 )

As usual, the notes below are designed to help you say one or more hours from the Benedictine Office according to the 1962-3 rubrics.

The page references are to the 2004 and later editions published by Farnborough Abbey, so if you are using an earlier edition of the Diurnal, the Antiphonale Monasticum or a breviary, you may need to hunt around a bit to get them to line up.

The Office this week

This week marks the start of time after Pentecost, so remember to drop all the Paschaltide alleluias added to verses etc, and use the normal time throughout the year antiphons, chapters etc, except where otherwise indicated for example for feasts.

Sunday is of course the exception to this, being the great feast of the Trinity, and a day to say Prime even if you don't usually, in order to recite the wonderful Athanasian Creed, which was almost certainly written around the time of St Benedict.

Note that from Monday onwards this week the default collect for the hours (except Prime and Compline) is of the First Sunday after Pentecost, not Trinity Sunday.

Tuesday of St Benedict

Note that as the first unimpeded Tuesday of the month occurs this week, the Votive Office of St Benedict on Tuesday on Tuesday would have been used on this day.  Votive Offices are not permitted, strictly speaking, under the 1962-3 rubrics, but have been revived as part of the modern Office, so it could certainly be said as a devotion at least if you wished.  The Matins readings for June will appear here and on the Lectio Divina Notes Blog the day before.

Matins this week

For those saying Matins (not in the Diurnal), the readings and responsories for all of the feasts this week can be found over at the Lectio Divina Notes Blog.

For Trinity Sunday, for some reason, the feast is not included in the Liber Responsorialis, but you can find sources for the chants for the responsories here.  Some, but not all of the texts for the antiphons can be found at Divinum Officium (with corresponding chants in the Nocturnale Romanum).

Note that Divinum Officium does not include a monastic version of the feast of Corpus Christi.  The Latin texts and chants, including a listing of the psalms, for the feast though are all available in the Liber Responsorialis (which you can download from CC Watershed) from page 119, and translations can be found at the Lectio Divina Notes Blog.

New to the traditional Benedictine Office?

And if you are new to the Benedictine Office, start here.


Ordo notes for the week


Sunday 11 June – Feast of the Most Holy Trinity, Class I

Matins: All of the feast, with three Nocturns (Invitatory antiphon, hymn, psalms, canticles, antiphons, Gospel, twelve readings and responsories of the feast)

Lauds: Festal psalms, of the feast, MD 409 ff

Prime: Antiphon of the feast, after the psalms, the Athanasian Creed is said, MD 411* ff

Terce to None: Antiphons, chapters and versicle of the feast, MD 416* ff

Vespers: As for I Vespers except for Magnificat antiphon, MD 418* 

Monday 12 June – Class IV [EF: St John of Facundo; Commemoration of SS Basilides, Cyrinus, Nabor and Nazarius]

All as in the psalter for time throughout the year (at Matins, short reading of the day of the week), collect of the first Sunday after Pentecost, MD 418*

[I Vespers of Votive Office of Tuesday of St Benedict]

Tuesday 13 June - Class IV; St Anthony of Padua, memorial [EF: Class III; OF: Immaculate Heart of the BVM]

All as in the psalter for time throughout the year, collect of the first Sunday after Pentecost, MD 418*; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [154]

[Matins to None: Votive Office of St Benedict]

Wednesday 14 June – St Basil the Great, Class III

Matins: Invitatory antiphon and hymn from Common of a Confessor bishop; antiphons and psalms of the day; one reading of the feast; chapter of a confessor bishop

Lauds: Antiphons and psalms of the day, rest from Common of a confessor bishop, MD (64); collect MD [155]

Prime: Antiphon 1 of Lauds from the Common

Terce to None: Chapter and versicle from Common; collect, MD [155]

I Vespers of Corpus Christi: Psalms and antiphons, etc of the feast, MD 419*

Thursday 15 June – Corpus Christi, Class I

Matins: All of the feast, with three Nocturns

LaudsFestal psalms of Sunday with antiphons etc of the feast, MD 427* ff

Prime: Antiphon 1 of Lauds

Terce to None: Antiphon, chapter and versicle, MD 430-1*

Vespers: As for I Vespers, MD 419* ff except for the Magnificat antiphon, MD 431*

Friday 16 June - Class IV

All as in the psalter for time throughout the year, collect of the first Sunday after Pentecost, MD 418*

Saturday 17 June – Saturday of Our Lady [EF: St Gregory Barbarigo]

Matins: As for Office of Our Lady with reading for Saturday 3 in June

Lauds to None: Office of Our Lady, MD (129) ff 

I Vespers of the Second Sunday after Pentecost, MD 432*

Tuesdays of St Benedict

File:Spinello Aretino Exorcism of St Benedict.jpg
 Spinello Aretino, 1387 Fresco S. Miniato al Monte, Florence 

Traditionally, Benedictines devoted the first free Tuesday of each month to a Votive Office of St Benedict.

Votive Offices, were, alas, abolished under the first of the twentieth century liturgical wreckovators popes, Pius X, but have been revived in the modern Liturgy of the Hours.

I've previously provided all of the texts for the hours:


But at Matins the readings are for the particular month.  Even if you don't say Matins, it is well worth reading and meditating on the Life of St Benedict, so here are the readings for June are as follows:

Reading 1: From chapter 2 of the first letter of St Paul to the Corinthians -  As it is written: That eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, what things God hath prepared for them that love him.  But to us God hath revealed them, by his Spirit. For the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, but the spirit of a man that is in him? So the things also that are of God no man knoweth, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of this world, but the Spirit that is of God; that we may know the things that are given us from God. Which things also we speak, not in the learned words of human wisdom; but in the doctrine of the Spirit, comparing spiritual things with spiritual.  But the sensual man perceiveth not these things that are of the Spirit of God; for it is foolishness to him, and he cannot understand, because it is spiritually examined.  But the spiritual man judgeth all things; and he himself is judged of no man.  For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.



R: Sanctus Benedictus plus appetiit mala mundi  perpeti quam laudes pro Deo laboribus fatigari * Quam vitae hujus favoribus extolli
V: Divina namque praeventus gratia magis ac magis ad superna animo suspirabat
R: Quam vitae hujus favoribus extolli
R St Benedict desiring rather the miseries of the world than the praises of men: rather to be wearied with labor for God's sake * than to be exalted with transitory commendation
V: For filled greatly with divine grace, his soul aspired to even higher things
R: Than to be exalted with transitory commendation 

Reading 2: From Book II of St Gregory's Dialogues, chapter 16  - At the same time a certain clergyman, that served in the church of Aquinum, was possessed: whom the venerable man Constantius, Bishop of the same city, sent to many places of holy martyrs for help: but God's holy martyrs would not deliver him, to the end that the world might know what great grace was in the servant of God, Benedict: wherefore at length he was brought to him, who, praying for help to Jesus Christ our Lord, forthwith cast the old enemy out of the possessed man's body, giving him this charge: "Go your way, and hereafter abstain from eating of flesh, and presume not to enter into holy orders, for whenever you shall attempt any such thing, the devil again will have power over you." The man departed safe and sound, and because punishment fresh in memory used to terrify the mind, he observed for a time what the man of God had given him in commandment. But after many years, when all his seniors were dead, and he saw his juniors preferred before him to holy orders, he neglected the words of the man of God, as though forgotten through length of time, and took on him holy orders: whereupon immediately the devil that before had left him entered again, and never ceased to torment him, until he had separated his soul from his body.

R: O laudanda sancti Benedicti merita gloriosa qui dum pro Christo patriam mundique sprevit pompam adeptus omnium contubernium beatorum * Et particeps factus praemiorum aeternorum
V: Inter choros confessorum splendidum possidet locum ubi ipsum fontem omnium intuetur bonorum
R: Et particeps factus praemiorum aeternorum
O praise the glorious merits of St Benedict who for Christ left his fatherland and the pomp of the world, and arrived at the companionship of all the blessed * And was made a partaker of eternal rewards
 V: He holds a splendid place among the chorus of confessors, where he gazes upon the font of all good
R: And was made a partaker of eternal rewards


Reading 3: [Peter] This holy man, as I perceive, knew the secret counsel of God: for he saw that this clergyman was delivered to the power of the devil, to the end he should not presume to enter into holy orders. [GREGORY]: Why should he not know the secrets of God, who kept the commandments of God: when as the scripture says: "He that cleaves to our Lord, is one spirit with him?" [PETER:] If he that cleaves to our Lord, be one spirit with our Lord, what is the meaning of that which the Apostle says: "Who knows the sense of our Lord, or who hath been his counselor?" for it seems very inconvenient to be ignorant of his sense, to whom being so united he is made one thing. [GREGORY:] Holy men, in that they be one with our Lord are not ignorant of his sense: for the same Apostle says: "For what man knows those things which belong to man, but the spirit of man which is in him? Even so, the things which belong to God, no man knows, but the spirit of God." And to show also that he knew such things as belong to God, he added straight after: "But we have not received the spirit of this world, but the spirit which is of God." And for this cause, again he says: "that eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, nor it hath ascended into the heart of man, those things which God hath prepared for them that love him, but God hath revealed to us by his spirit."

R: Sanctissime confessor Christi Benedicte monachorum pater et dux *  Intercede pro nostra omniumque salute
V: Devotae plebi subveni sancta intercessione ut tuis adjuta precibus regna caelestia consequatur
R: Intercede pro nostra omniumque salute
V: Gloria Patri...
R: Intercede...
R: O Benedict, Most holy confessor of Christ, father and leader of monks, * Intercede for us and the salvation of all
V: Assist your devoted people with holy intercession so that with the help of your prayers they may reach the heavenly kingdom
R: Intercede for us and the salvation of all
V: Glory be...
R: Intercede...

Traditional Benedictine Ordo - Octave of Pentecost (June 4-10)

This week the Office is of the Octave of Pentecost, and the day hours (Lauds to Vespers) uses the Sunday psalms each day; the key thing that changes are the canticle antiphons and Lauds and Vespers.  Note also that at Terce the hymn each day is Veni Creator.

For those saying Matins (not in the Monastic Diurnal), the Office at Matins includes three readings each day, which can be found at the Lectio Divina Notes Blog each day; more detailed information on Matins during the office can be found here.

Sunday 4 June – Pentecost Sunday, Class I with Class I Octave

Matins: Invitatory antiphon, hymn, antiphons, psalms, Gospel and twelve readings and responsories of the feast

Lauds: Antiphons etc of the feast, MD 396* ff; festal psalms of Sunday

Prime: Antiphon 1 of Lauds

Terce to None: Antiphon, chapter and versicle of the feast, MD 400*; at Terce, hymn Veni Creator

Vespers: All as for I Vespers, MD 393* ff except for the Magnificat antiphon, MD 402-3*

Monday 5 June – Whit Monday, Class I

Matins: Two nocturns, with invitatory antiphon, hymn, psalms and antiphons as for Nocturns I&II of Sunday with three readings of the day are of the day OR Invitatory and hymn of the feast with psalms of the day

Lauds to Vespers: As for Pentecost Sunday, including the psalms, except the Canticle antiphons and collect, MD 403*; at Terce, hymn Veni Creator

Tuesday 6 June – Whit Tuesday, Class I

Matins: As for Sunday omitting Nocturn III, with three readings OR Invitatory and hymn of the feast with psalms of the day

Lauds to Vespers: As for Pentecost Sunday except the Canticle antiphons and collect, MD 403-4*

Wednesday 7 June – Ember Wednesday, Class I

Matins: Invitatory and hymn of the feast; psalms of the Wednesday under one antiphon of the feast; readings of the day

Lauds to Vespers: As for Pentecost Sunday except the Canticle antiphons and collect, MD 404-5*

Thursday 8 June - Whit Thursday, Class I

Matins: Invitatory and hymn of the feast; psalms of the Thursday under one antiphon of the feast; readings of the day

Lauds to Vespers: As for Pentecost Sunday except the Canticle antiphons and collect, MD 405*

Friday 9 June - Ember Friday, Class I

Matins: Invitatory and hymn of the feast; psalms of the Friday under one antiphon of the feast; readings of the day

Lauds to Vespers: As for Pentecost Sunday except the Canticle antiphons and collect, MD 405-6*

Saturday 10 June – Ember Saturday, Class I

Matins: Invitatory and hymn of the feast; psalms of the Saturday under one antiphon of the feast; readings of the day

Lauds to None: As for Pentecost Sunday except the Benedictus antiphon and collect, MD 406-7*

Traditional Benedictine Office - Ordo for the week after the Ascension (May 28 - June 3)

This week we are in Ascensiontide, and you can find notes on the Office in this period here.  For those saying Matins, you can find more detailed notes on where to find the texts and chants here.  And you can find the Matins readings each day (including those for the old Octave of the Ascension) over at Lectio Divina Notes

As usual, all page references are to the Farnborough edition of the Monastic Diurnal - if you are using an older edition or a different book, you will need to check the page headings!

Sunday 28 May – Sunday after the Ascension, Class II

Matins: Invitatory antiphon, hymn, antiphons, Gospel and readings for the Sunday

Lauds: Festal psalms with three antiphons (alleluia - canticle - alleluia); chapter etc from MD 389* ff

Prime to None: Antiphons, chapter etc from MD 391* ff

Vespers: Psalms of Sunday under one antiphon; chapter and hymn of Lauds; responsory and Magnificat antiphon, MD 393*

Monday 29 May - Class IV [EF: St Mary Magdalen of Pazzi]

Ordinary of the Ascension, MD 386* ff

Tuesday 30 May – Class IV [EF: Commemoration of St Felix]

Ordinary of the Ascension, MD 386* ff

Wednesday 31 May – Class IV [EF: The Queenship of the BVM]

Ordinary of the Ascension, MD 386* ff

Thursday 1 June – Class IV [EF: St Angela Merici]

Ordinary of the Ascension, MD 386* ff

Friday 2 June – Class IV; SS Marcellinus and Peter, memorial [EF: and St Erasmus]

Ordinary of the Ascension, MD 386* ff; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [151]

Saturday 3 June - Whitsun Eve (Vigil of the Pentecost), Class I

Matins: Ordinary of Ascensiontide but with three readings and responsories of the day

Lauds to None: Ordinary of the Ascension, MD 386*

PENTECOST

I Vespers of Pentecost, MD 393* ff (including psalms of the feast)

St Bede the Venerable, OSB


Image result for ezra restoring the bible
Codex Amiatinus depiction of Ezra,
 produced at Wearmouth-Jarrow in Bede's time

St Bede, I have to say, is currently my favourite saint.

Back in the day, Blessed Cardinal Newman wrote that 'Bede is truly the pattern of a Benedictine as is St Thomas of a Dominican'.   Today's Matins reading nicely sets out just why this is:
Bede the priest was born at Jarrow, on the borders of England and Scotland. When a monk, he so arranged his life as to devote himself completely to the study of the liberal arts and sacred doctrine, without in any way relaxing the discipline of the Rule. There was no kind of learning in which he was not thoroughly versed; but his special interest was the study of the Scriptures; and when he was made a priest, he undertook the task of explaining the holy books. In doing so, he adhered to the teaching of the holy Fathers so closely that he would say nothing not already approved by their judgment, and he even made use of their very words. Abhorring laziness, he would go straight from reading to prayer and from prayer to reading. To raise the level of morality among Christians and to defend and spread the faith, he wrote many books, which gained him such a reputation with everyone that his writings were publicly read in churches during his own lifetime. At length, worn out with age and labours, he fell asleep peacefully in the Lord. Leo XIII declared him a Doctor of the universal Church.
Although Bede's history of the English Church has long been available and appreciated, along with some of his lives of the saints, his output was actually much broader than this, including scientific works, guides to the holy lands, and a number of exegetical works.  English translations of his exegetical works are still only gradually becoming available, and this is leading to a new appreciation of Bede's originality: though he certainly drew heavily on the Fathers in his work, he was very much concerned with the politics of both church and state of his time, and his exegetical works in particular reflect this.

But for me at least, the most startling aspect of his work, though one not always acknowledged in modern translations of and commentary on his works (the exemplary work and valiant efforts of Scott DeGregorio aside) due to some typical 1970s revisionism, is the degree to which the Rule shaped his mindset.

Allusions to the Rule are scattered throughout his writings to the point where one can pretty much construct a commentary on the Rule from them (the Homilies alone for example include references to 50/73 tools of good works and 33 chapters of the Rule), and indeed even his use of Scriptural quotes frequently reflect's St Benedict use of the relevant text.  And while I've seen several theories advanced for the selection of the books of the Bible that he focused on, I haven't seen anyone as yet note what seem to me to be the obvious links between many of the texts he chose and his key themes (such as the Temple and Tabernacle) and the Rule...

Regardless, St Bede is an important saint well worth learning more about: a saint who lived a good life; provided us with a great legacy of his learning; and who also died a particularly holy death, which you can read about in this great post from A Clerk of Oxford.

St Augustine of Canterbury OSB (May 26) - Apostle to the English

Illuminated manuscript with a forward-facing man in the middle of the large H. Man is carrying a crozier and his head is surrounded by a halo.

St Augustine of Canterbury was a Benedictine monk who became the first Archbishop of Canterbury in the year 597.

The Matins reading for the feast is as follows:
Augustine, a monk of the Lateran monastery in Rome, was sent by Gregory the Great in 597 to England with about forty monks as his companions. They were invited by King Ethelbert to Canterbury, the chief city of the kingdom, and they built an oratory nearby. Through preaching the doctrine of heaven, Augustine brought many of the islanders and the king himself to the Christian faith, to the great joy of the king's wife, Bertha, who was a Christian. By order of Pope Gregory, Augustine was ordained bishop and founded the see of Canterbury; by the same Pontiff he was granted the use of the pallium and the right to organize the hierarchy of England. At length, after suffering great hardships for Christ, having set Mellitus over the Church of London, Justus over that of Rochester, and Lawrence over his own Church, he made his journey to heaven on the 26th day of May. He was buried in the monastery of St. Peter, which then became the burial place of bishops of Canterbury and of several kings.
He has traditionally been considered the "Apostle to the English" and a founder of the English Church.  St Bede records in his history of the English Church that the monks converted the locals by their preaching and example:
"…they began to emulate the life of the apostles and the primitive Church. They were constantly at prayer; they fasted and kept vigils; they preached the word of life to whomsoever they could….Before long a number of heathen, admiring the simplicity of their holy lives and the comfort of their heavenly message, believed and were baptized..."
St Augustine established schools and monasteries, and set about organising the missionary effort more broadly in England. His life was marked by miracles, and he was quickly acclaimed as a saint on his death.

Feast of the Ascension (May 25)

BambergApocalypse10Ascension.JPG
Bamburger Apocalypse


Today is the feast of the Ascension, and in a few days time we celebrate the feast of a Benedictine saint who died on the day of the feast, St Bede.  Accordingly, I thought it might be appropriate to share a poem of the saint written for the feast, often sung to the tune 'All creatures of our God and king':

A hymn of glory let us sing:
New songs throughout the world shall ring:
Alleluia! Alleluia!
Christ, by a road before untrod,
Ascendeth to the throne of God.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

The holy apostolic band
Upon the Mount of Olives stand;
Alleluia! Alleluia!
And with his followers they see
Jesus' resplendent majesty.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

To whom the angels, drawing nigh,
"Why stand and gaze upon the sky?
Alleluia! Alleluia!
This is the Saviour!" thus they say;
"This is his noble triumph-day."
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

"Again shall ye behold him so
As ye today have seen him go
Alleluia! Alleluia!
In glorious pomp ascending high,
Up to the portals of the sky."
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Oh, grant us thitherward to tend
And with unwearied hearts ascend
Alleluia! Alleluia!
Unto thy kingdom's throne, where thou,
As is our faith, art seated now.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Be thou our Joy and strong Defence
Who art our future Recompense:
Alleluia! Alleluia!
So shall the light that springs from thee
Be ours through all eternity.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

O risen Christ, ascended Lord,
All praise to thee let earth accord,
Alleluia! Alleluia!
Who art, while endless ages run,
With Father and with Spirit One.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

(Trans: Benjamin Webb)

Our Lady Help of Christians (May 24)



In Australia and a number of other countries, May 24 is the solemnity of Our Lady Help of Christians.  In Australia and those countries where it is a first class feast, we will naturally pray first and foremost for the conversion of our own countries.  Pope Benedict XVI, however, asked that this day be especially a day of prayer for China, so please do say the collect of the day as part of your devotions for this intention:
O Almighty and merciful God, Who didst wondrously appoint the most Blessed Virgin perpetual help for Christians in need of protection: grant in Thy mercy that after battling in life under such a protectress, we may be able to conquer our enemy at death. Through our Lord.
For those saying the Office of the feast, the Monastic Diurnal has the texts for the day hours, starting at MD  25** - for the psalms and antiphons, use the Common of feasts of Our Lady, but with the hymns, responsories, Magnificat antiphon and collect of the feast.

The 1962-3 breviary does include a specific set of texts for all of the hours (in the supplement at the back of Volume II for the Ottilien Congregation), but of course without chants.  If you don't have access to that, the Common of feasts of Our Lady would work for Matins.

St Romanus (May 22)




Today the martyrology remembers St Romanus, who clothed St Benedict in the holy habit, and aided him in his early years as a hermit:
But Benedict, desiring rather the miseries of the world than the praises of men: rather to be wearied with labour for God's sake, than to be exalted with transitory commendation: fled privily from his nurse, and went into a desert place called Sublacum, distant almost forty miles from Rome: in which there was a fountain springing forth cool and clear water; the abundance whereof doth first in a broad place make a lake, and afterward running forward, cometh to be a river.  
As he was travelling to this place, a certain monk called Romanus met him, and demanded whither he went, and understanding his purpose, he both kept it close, furthered him what he might, vested him with the habit of holy conversation, and as he could, did minister and serve him. 
The man of God, Benedict, coming to this foresaid place, lived there in a strait cave, where he continued three years unknown to all men, except to Romanus, who lived not far off, under the rule of Abbot Theodacus, and very virtuously did steal certain hours, and likewise sometime a loaf given for his own provision, which he did carry to Benedict....(St Gregory, Dialogues 2:1)
The tradition holds that St Romanus later went to Gaul and founded a small monastery at Dryes-Fontrouge, where he died about 550 and was venerated as a saint. 

Rogation days


Rogation days are traditionally days of prayer (with the litany of the saints being sung) and fasting.

The three 'minor' rogation days before Ascension date back to the sixth century, and were instituted to appease God's anger at man's transgressions, to ask protection in calamities, and to obtain a good and bountiful harvest.

You can find the litany and prayers in the Diurnal at pg (200) and the full chants in the Processionale Monasticum.  If said privately, it is usually done after Lauds.

In earlier versions of the Office, there were readings at Matins and a collect specific to the rogation day.  In the 1962 monastic version for some reason these have been stripped out of the Office, but I have put up the readings over at the lectio divina notes blog, and here is the collect in case you want to use it devotionally.

Orémus
Praesta quaesumus omnipotens Deus: ut qui in afflictione nostra de tua pietate confidimus; contra adversa omnia tua semper protectione muniamur.
Per Dóminum nostrum Jesum Christum, Fílium tuum: qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitáte Spíritus Sancti Deus, per ómnia sǽcula sæculórum.
R. Amen.
24
Let us pray.
Grant, we beseech thee, O Almighty God, that we who in our tribulation are yet of good cheer because of thy loving-kindness, may find thee mighty to save from all dangers.
Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.


Traditional Benedictine Office - Ordo for the fifth week after Easter including the Ascension (May 21 - 27)

Herewith notes on the Benedictine Office according to the 1962-3 rubrics for this week.

This week marks the end of the main Easter season, with the feast of the Ascension, and the start of its final sub-component, 'Ascensiontide'.

Monday to Wednesday are Rogation Days which don't affect the Office (at least in its 1962 incarnation), but are worth noting.

The 'ordinary' texts for the Office do change after the feast, so do take a look at my notes on the Office in Ascensiontide.

Readings and responsories for the assorted days and feasts of the week will be found on the Lectio Divina Notes blog the afternoon before the feast (Australian time).  In an earlier version of the Office,m the Office during the Octave of Ascension had Patristic readings each day, however they are omitted in the modern version and I'm afraid I can't find an online version (though they are in Liturgical Readings).

For those saying Matins, more detailed notes on where to find the various texts for the week can be found here.

Sunday 21 May – Fifth Sunday after Easter, Class II

Matins: Invitatory (Surrexit Dominus), hymn (Rex sempiterne), Gospel, twelve readings and responsories of the Sunday

Lauds: (Three) Antiphons for Eastertide with festal psalms for Eastertide, rest from MD 373* ff

Prime: Antiphon of Eastertide, rest as in the psalter for Sunday

Terce to None: Antiphons of Eastertide, Sunday psalms; chapter verse, versicle and collect, MD 373* ff

Vespers: Psalms of Sunday under one antiphon; chapter of Lauds; responsory and hymn, MD 354*; Magnificat antiphon, MD 375*

Monday 22 May – Rogation Day, Class IV

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 375*; collect, MD 373*

Tuesday 23 May – Rogation Day, Class IV

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 375-6*; collect, MD 373*

Australia: I Vespers of Our Lady Help of Christians, MD 25**

Wednesday 24 May – Vigil of the Ascension, Class II [Australia: Our Lady Help of Christians, Class I]

Matins: All as for the Ordinary of Eastertide except for the three readings and responsories of the day

Lauds to None: all as for ordinary of Paschaltide; collect, MD 372-3*; at Lauds, versicle and Benedictus antiphon MD 376*

Australia: All of Our Lady Help of Christians, MD 28**, with a commemoration of Ascension at Vespers (for Matins, Common of the BVM)

ASCENSIONTIDE

I Vespers of the Ascension, see MD 376* ff

Thursday 25 May  The Ascension of Our Lord, Class I

Matins: Invitatory, hymn, antiphons, psalms, Gospel, twelve readings and responsories of the feast

Lauds: Festal psalms with proper antiphons and texts of the feast, MD 379* ff

Prime: Antiphon 1 of Lauds of the feast

Terce to None: Antiphons, chapter and versicle, MD 382-3*; collect, MD 381*

Vespers: as for I Vespers, with Magnificat antiphon, MD 383*

Friday 26 May – St Augustine OSB, Class III [EF: St Philip Neri, Class III]

Matins: Invitatory and hymn from Common of a confessor bishop; psalms of the day; antiphons, versicle and brief reading from the Ordinary of Ascensiontide; one reading of the feast

Lauds and Vespers: Psalms and antiphons of the day; rest from common of a confessor bishop except for collect, MD [150]  [NB The Clear Creek supplement to the Antiphonale contains a hymn specific to the feast]

Prime: Antiphon from the Common

Terce to None: chapter & versicle from the Common

If Class I, see MD 30**

Saturday 27 May – St Bede OSB, Class III

Matins: Invitatory antiphon and hymn from Common of a confessor bishop; psalms of the day; antiphons, versicle and brief reading from the Ordinary of Ascensiontide; one reading of the feast

Lauds: Psalms and antiphons of the day; rest from common of a confessor not a bishop, MD (78) except for collect, MD [150]  

Prime: Antiphon from the Common

Terce to None: Chapter & versicle from the Common, collect MD [150]  

If Class I, see MD 31** 

I Vespers of the Sunday after the Ascension, MD 388*

Vocational discernment weekend for women (Sydney, Australia)



Please keep in your prayers if you would, an emerging religious community in Australia, the Daughters of the Maternal Heart of Mary.

This is a new, semi-contemplative community based in Sydney, and living a life of prayer and work according to the spirit of St. Benedict, with Mass in the Extraordinary Form and the Monastic Office chanted in Latin.  The charism of the group involves interceding for all Priests and praying daily for the Holy Father, bishops, priests and seminarians.  They also assist priests in various works, including teaching catechism, visiting the sick and sewing liturgical attire.

A vocational discernment weekend for young women is being held on July 14 -16, and will:
  • enable participants to explore the life and charism of the Daughters of the Maternal Heart of Mary;
  • include conferences on the religious life, vocation discernment and the spirituality of the community; and 
  • provide opportunity for silent recollection, praying the Monastic Office and participating in some of the active apostolates of the community.
Those interested in attending can find further details here.

Tuesday of St Benedict: Matins readings




You may recall that my previous posts on the old votive Office of St Benedict, usually said on the first free Tuesday of each month.  This Tuesday being unencumbered, herewith the readings for May.

Reading 1: From the Third Book of Kings, chapter 17 - The son of the woman, the mistress of the house, fell sick, and the sickness was very grievous, so that there was no breath left in him. And she said to Elias: What have I to do with thee, thou man of God? art thou come to me that my iniquities should be remembered, and that thou shouldst kill my son? And Elias said to her: Give me thy son. And he took him out of her bosom, and carried him into the upper chamber where he abode, and laid him upon his own bed. And he cried to the Lord, and said: O Lord my God, hast thou afflicted also the widow, with whom I am after a sort maintained, so as to kill her son? And he stretched, and measured himself upon the child three times, and cried to the Lord, and said: O Lord my God, let the soul of this child, I beseech thee, return into his body. And the Lord heard the voice of Elias: and the soul of the child returned into him, and he revived. And Elias took the child, and brought him down from the upper chamber to the house below, and delivered him to his mother, and said to her: Behold thy son liveth. And the woman said to Elias: Now, by this I know that thou art a man of God, and the word of the Lord in thy mouth is true.

Reading 2: From Chapter 11 of the Dialogues of  St Gregory the Great - Again, as the monks were making of a certain wall somewhat higher, because that was requisite, the man of God in the meantime was in his cell at his prayers. To whom the old enemy appeared in an insulting manner, telling him, that he was now going to his monks, that were a-working: whereof the man of God, in all haste, gave them warning, wishing them to look unto themselves, because the devil was at that time coming amongst them. The message was scarce delivered, when as the wicked spirit overthrew the new wall which they were a building, and with the fall slew a little young child, a monk, who was the son of a certain courtier.  At which pitiful chance all were passing sorry and exceedingly grieved, not so much for the loss of the wall, as for the death of their brother: and in all haste they sent this heavy news to the venerable man Benedict;

Reading 3: Who commanded them to bring unto him the young boy, mangled and maimed as he was, which they did, but yet they could not carry him any otherwise than in a sack: for the stones of the wall had not only broken his limbs, but also his very bones. Being in that manner brought unto the man of God, he bad them to lay him in his cell, and in that place upon which he used to pray; and then, putting them all forth, he shut the door, and fell more instantly to his prayers than he used at other times. And O strange miracle! for the very same hour he made him sound, and as lively as ever he was before; and sent him again to his former work, that he also might help the monks to make an end of that wall, of whose death the old serpent thought he should have insulted over Benedict, and greatly triumphed.


St Pachomius (May 14/15)

StPakhom.jpg

 The feast of St Pachomius (circa 272-348) is celebrated in the modern Benedictine calendar today (May 15); in the 1962 calendar is memorial is May 14.  He is an important saint for monastics, as the author of the first known rule for coenibites (monks living in community).

Saint Pachomius was born in Egypt to pagan parents and was forced to become a soldier at age 21.  In this capacity he encountered a group of Christians ministering to the troops, and was so impressed by them that he decided to investigate the faith once he had left the army.  He was duly converted and baptised, and initially sought the guidance of a hermit named Palaemon.  After a few years he set out to live near St Antony, whose practices he imitated until Pachomius heard a voice in Tabennisi that told him to build a dwelling for the hermits to come to.  He established his first monastery 318 and 323, and the community grew rapidly, and made several new foundations.

You can read a life of the saint, translated from the Greek into Latin by one of St Benedict's contemporaries, Dionysius Exiguus, here.


Traditional Benedictine Office - Ordo for the fourth week after Easter (May 14 - 20)

Ordo notes keyed to the 1962-3 rubrics, with page references to the Monastic Diurnal (Farnborough edition) are set out below.

As usual more detailed notes on saying Matins are available on the Benedictine Matins blog and the readings and responsories at Matins can be found on the Lectio Divina Notes blog.

Those new to the Benedictine Office should consider starting with Prime and Compline, and should read the notes here.

Sunday 14 May – Fourth Sunday after Easter, Class II

Matins: Invitatory (Surrexit Dominus), hymn (Rex sempiterne), Gospel, twelve readings and responsories of the Sunday

Lauds: (Three) Antiphons for Eastertide with festal psalms for Eastertide, rest from MD 368* ff

Prime: Antiphon of Eastertide, rest as in the psalter 

Terce to None: Antiphons of Eastertide; chapter verse, versicle and collect from MD 368* ff

Vespers: Psalms of Sunday under one antiphon; chapter of Lauds; responsory and hymn from MD 354*; Magnificat antiphon, MD 370*
                 
Monday 15 May – Class IV [EF: St John Baptist de la Salle]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 370*; collect, MD 368*

Tuesday 16 May – Class IV [EF: St Ubald]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 370*; collect, MD 368*

Wednesday 17 May – Class IV [EF: St Pascal Baylon, Class III]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 371*; collect, MD 368*

Thursday 18 May – Class IV [EF: St Venantius]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 371*; collect, MD 368*

Friday 19 May – Class IV; St Peter Celestine, Memorial [EF: Class III] **In Some Places St Dunstan, Class III

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 371-2*; collect, MD 368*; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [148-9]

For St Dunstan, see MD [25**]

Saturday 20 May – Saturday of Our Lady [EF: St Bernardine of Siena]

Matins: Office of our Lady in Eastertide with reading for Saturday 3 in May

Lauds to None: Office of Our Lady, MD (134) ff; note that the antiphons and versicles for Prime to None should have alleluias added to them.

I Vespers of Fifth Sunday after Easter, MD 372* ff

Feast of SS Philip and James


 Detail of reredos | Polytych by Maestà | Wikimedia
Duccio di Buoninsegna
Today is the feast of SS Philip and James.  Their feast was originally celebrated together on May 1, the anniversary of the dedication of the Church housing their relics in Rome, established in the mid sixth century.  The Church in question, however, was later renamed as the Church of the Twelve Apostles (though there are some suggests it was always officially called that), so I guess the change of date is not as unfortunate as it might seem...

You can find the readings and responsories for the feast here, and additional notes on saying and/or singing Matins of the feast here.

You can also find Pope Benedict XVI's General Audiences on these saints here:

St Gregory Nazianzus (May 9), Class III

Gregor-Chora.jpg

The reading for the feast of St Gregory at Matins is as follows:
Gregory Nazianzus, a noble Cappadocian, earned the name of The Divine from his extraordinary knowledge of the sacred sciences. It was to these that he turned after being educated at Athens, together with St. Basil, in every branch of learning. He was first made Bishop of Sosima and then administered the Church of Nazianzus. Summoned to rule over the Church of Constantinople, he purged the city of heretical errors and brought it back to the Catholic faith. Although this deed should have won him the love of all, it earned him the hatred of many; so that, when a great quarrel had arisen among the bishops on his account, he resigned his See voluntarily, making his own the words of the prophet Jonah: If this storm hath arisen on my account, then throw me into the sea, that you may cease to be tossed about. He returned to Nazianzus, and having arranged that Eulalius should be its bishop, devoted himself wholly to prayer and the study of divine things. He wrote many famous works, both in prose and in verse, and was a most ardent defender of the doctrine of the consubstantiality of the Son with the Father. When Theodosius was emperor, Gregory, now grown old, departed to the life of heaven.
If you would like to know more about the saint and his teachings, Pope Benedict XVI gave two General Audiences which you find by following the links:

General Audience of 8 August 2007
General Audience of 22 August 2007

Traditional Benedictine Office - Ordo for third week after Easter (May 7-13)

For those interested in Matins, the texts of the readings and responsories can be found on the Lectio Divina blog; and notes on where to find the other texts needed to say Matins of the Sunday can be found here.


Sunday 7 May – Third Sunday after Easter, Class II

Matins: Invitatory (Surrexit Dominus), hymn (Rex sempiterne), Gospel, twelve readings and responsories of the Sunday

Lauds: (Three) Antiphons for Eastertide with festal psalms; rest from MD 363* ff

Prime: Antiphons of Eastertide, rest as in the psalter for Sunday

Terce to None: antiphons of Eastertide, Sunday psalms; chapter verse, versicle, MD 364* ff; collect, MD 363*

Vespers: Psalms of Sunday under one antiphon; chapter of Lauds; responsory and hymn from MD 354*; Magnificat antiphon, MD 365*

Monday 8 May – Class IV

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 365*; collect, MD 362*

Tuesday 9 May – St Gregory Nazianzen, Class III

Matins: Invitatory and hymn of a confessor bishop, psalms of the day, antiphons of Eastertide; one reading of the feast

Lauds and Vespers: Psalms and antiphons of the day, rest from Common of a Confessor Bishop, MD (64) except collect, MD [141] and Magnificat antiphon (of a Doctor)

Prime: Antiphon from the Common

Terce to None: Chapter and versicle from the Common; collect, MD [141]

Wednesday 10 May – SS Gordian and Epimachis, memorial [EF: St Antonius]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 366*; collect, MD 362*; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [141-2]

Thursday 11 May - SS Philip and James, Class II

Matins: All from the Common of Apostles during Eastertide, except for readings and responsories, of the feast.

Lauds to Vespers: Antiphons and canticle antiphons of the feast, MD [142] ff, rest from the Common of Apostles in Eastertide, MD (23) ff.  At Lauds and Vespers, festal psalms

Friday 12 May - Class IV; SS Nereus, Archilleus and Pancras, memorial [EF: Class III, and Domitilla]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 366-7*; collect, MD 362*; for the commemoration at Lauds MD [146]  

Saturday 13 May – Saturday of Our Lady; St Robert Bellarmine, memorial [EF: Class III]

Matins: Office of our Lady in Eastertide with reading for Saturday 2 in May

Lauds to None: Office of Our Lady, MD (134) ff; note that the antiphons and versicles for Prime to None should have alleluias added to them; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [147]

I Vespers of Fourth Sunday in Eastertide: MD 367*ff

Sacra Liturgia Conference in Milan 2017



Just a note to let you know that the full programme for the Sacra Liturgia Conference being held this on 6-9 June, is now available, and part-time registrations are also now open.

This year's conference is being held in Milan, and includes a number of (EF) Ambrosian rite liturgies for Mass and Vespers.  There are presentations from leading figures such as Cardinals Sarah and Burke, and some wonderful sounding talks on subjects such as the Ambrosian Rite, music in the liturgy and much more.

Note that you will probably need to get in quickly if you want to attend!


Finding of Holy Cross (May 3)




Unless you are on oblate of Le Barroux (or another monastery that retains this feast), today is not the feast of the Finding of Holy Cross.

But it should be.

The Finding of Holy Cross is one of those feasts that fell victim to the calendar reforms of the 1950s and early 1960s, when it was combined with the Feast of the Exaltation of Holy Cross (which celebrates the dedication of the Church of the Holy Sepulcre).

It celebrated St Helena's (mother of Constantine the Great) discovery of the Holy Sepulcre in Jerusalem, and subsequent discovery of the Cross at the site.

Here are the readings on the subject from the former Roman version of the feast:
After that famous victory which the Emperor Constantine gained over Maxentius, in the year 312, on the eve of which the banner of the Cross of the Lord had been given to him from heaven, Helen, the mother of Constantine, being warned in a dream, came to Jerusalem, in 326, to seek for the Cross. There it was her care to cause to be overthrown the marble statue of Venus, which had stood on Calvary for about one hundred and eighty years, and which had originally been put there to desecrate and destroy the memorial of the sufferings of the Lord Christ. The like work Helen did at Bethlehem, by cleansing from an image of Adonis the stable where the Saviour was born, and from an idol of Jupiter, the place where He had arisen from the dead. 
Then she had thus cleansed the place where the Cross had stood, Helen caused deep excavations to be made, which resulted in the discovery of three crosses, and, apart from them, the writing which had been nailed on that of the Lord. But which of the crosses had been His was unknown, and was only manifested by a miracle. Macarius, Bishop of Jerusalem, after offering solemn prayers to God, touched with each of the three a woman who was afflicted with a grievous disease. The two first had no effect, but at the touch of the third she was immediately healed. 
Helen, after she had found the life-giving Cross, built over the site of the Passion a Church of extraordinary splendour, wherein she deposited part of the Cross, shut up in a silver case. Another part which she gave to her son, Constantine, was laid up in the Church of the Holy Cross of Jerusalem, which he built at Rome on the site of the Sessorian Palace. She also gave to her son the nails with which the Most Holy Body of Jesus Christ had been pierced. Constantine established a law abolishing the punishment of crucifixion for all time coming and thenceforth what had hitherto been a hissing and a curse among men, began to be esteemed worshipful and glorious.

St Athanasius, May 2

Ikone Athanasius von Alexandria.jpg


St Athanasius is extremely important not just as a Father of the Church, but also from a monastic point of view, for his Life of St Antony.  The reading for his feast at Matins is as follows:
Athanasius was Bishop of Alexandria, and a most vigorous defender of the Catholic religion. When he was still a deacon, he refuted the impiety of Arius at the Council of Nicaea, and earned such hatred from the Arians that, from that time on, they never ceased to lay snares for him. Driven into exile, he went to Treves in Gaul. He endured unbelievable hardships and wandered over a great part of the world, being often driven from his Church, and often restored by the authority of Pope Julius and the decrees of the Councils of Sardica and Jerusalem. All this while, he was persecuted by the Arians. Finally, rescued, by the help of God, from so many great dangers, he died at Alexandria during the reign of Emperor Valens. His life and death are marked by great miracles. He wrote many works, both of devotion and of catechetics, and, with great holiness, he ruled the Church of Alexandria, in those most troubled times, for forty-six years.

Traditional Benedictine Office - Ordo for second week after Easter (April 30 - May 6)

For those who say Matins, just a reminder that you can find more detailed notes on the feasts of the week (including where to find the chants for the responsories and other texts) over at my Benedictine Matins Blog.

Sunday April 30 – Second Sunday after Easter, Class II

Matins: Invitatory (Surrexit Dominus), hymn (Rex sempiterne), Gospel, twelve readings and responsories of the Sunday

Lauds: (Three) Antiphons for Eastertide with festal psalms for Eastertide, rest from MD 356* ff

Prime: Antiphons of Eastertide, rest as in the psalter for Sunday

Terce to None: Antiphons of Eastertide, Sunday psalms; chapter verse, versicle and collect from MD 358* ff

VespersI Vespers of St Joseph the Worker, MD [123] ff with a commemoration of the Sunday, MD 358-60*

Monday 1 May – St Joseph the Worker, Class I

Note choice of Offices: MD [126] ff or [133] ff

Matins: All of the feast with twelve readings and responsories

Lauds: Festal psalms, antiphons and other texts for the feast

Prime to None: Antiphons etc of the feast

Vespers: Psalms from the Common of Apostles, rest of the feast

Tuesday 2 May – St Athanasius, Class III

Matins: Invitatory and hymn of a confessor bishop; one reading of the feast

Lauds and Vespers: Psalms and antiphon of the day, rest from Common of a Confessor Bishop, MD (84), except collect, MD [138] and Magnificat antiphon (of a Doctor)

Prime: Antiphon from the Common

Terce to None: Antiphons, Chapter and versicle from the Common; collect, MD [138]

Wednesday 3 May – SS Alexander, Eventius and Theodolus, memorial [in some places: Finding of Holy Cross]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 360-1*; collect, MD 358*; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [138-9]

Thursday 4 May – Class IV; St Monica, memorial [EF: Class III]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 361*; collect, MD 358*; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [139-40]

Friday 5 May – Class IVSt Pius V, memorial [EF: Class III]

Ordinary of Eastertide, MD 346*ff; canticle antiphons for Lauds and Vespers, MD 361*; collect, MD 358*; for the commemoration at Lauds, MD [140]  

Saturday 6 May – Saturday of Our Lady

Matins: Office of our Lady in Eastertide with reading for Saturday 1 in May

Lauds to None: Office of Our Lady, MD (134) ff; note that the antiphons and versicles for Prime to None should have alleluias added to them

I Vespers of Third Sunday after Easter, MD 362* ff