Monday, March 18, 2024

The Office in Passiontide

Just a reminder that from Sunday, we are now in the season of Passiontide.

That means that the 'Ordinary' (antiphons, chapters, versicles, responsories, hymns and so forth) are of the season of Passiontide, not Lent, while the canticle antiphons and collects are of the day of Passiontide.

One of the most distinctive  aspects of the season is the omission of the doxologies in the responsories, and for the invitatory at Matins.Where the Passiontide day is displaced by a feast (such as St Joseph on March 19, and St Benedict, on March 21), a commemoration of the Passiontide day is made at Lauds and Vespers, by saying the  canticle antiphon of the Passiontide day and hour, versicle (of the season) and collect of the day and hour immediately after the collect of the feast.

The hymn below is sung at Matins and Vespers each day.


The Office during Passiontide


Passiontide (the period up to and including Wednesday in Holy Week) has its own ‘Ordinary’ which can be found in the 'of time' section of an office book.

 At Matins, the Ordinary can be found at NM 278-9:

  • The invitatory antiphon each day is for the season (Hodie si vocem Domini audieritis), and is said without the doxology;
  • The hymn is for the season and is the same each day (Pange lingua);
  • The readings during the week are usually patristic sermons, relating to the Gospel of the Mass set for that day;
  • The responsories omit the doxology, instead simply repeating the response; and
  • The chapter verse for Nocturn II is for the season (Jer 11:18-19).

 The Ordinary for the day hours can be found at MD 240* ff.

 At Prime to None:

  • The antiphons, chapters and versicles are of the season of Passiontide, and can be found in the psalter section; and
  • The collect for Terce to None is the same as for Lauds of that day.

 At Lauds and Vespers:

  • Chapters, hymns, responsories and versicles of the season replace those in the psalter section;
  • The responsories (but not the psalms) omit the Gloria Patri, instead repeating the opening verse;
  • The canticle antiphons are proper for each day. They generally reflect the (EF) Gospel for the day; and
  • There is a specific collect for both Lauds and Vespers each day.

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