Wednesday, January 13, 2016

The Little Office: My second part of "Mass and office"


So far this year I've hung up the rosary (except when driving) for a form of the office again, a light version of the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mimicking the Roman Breviary but not nearly as hard; an office for the laity. Matins (the light option: only one nocturn, changing with the day of the week) & Lauds and Vespers, on my train commute. Book from the Capuchins in '54 featuring Pius XII's clunky new version of the Latin with an English translation. I go back and forth: if I remember a traditional Book of Common Prayer translation I use it; if I remember the Vulgate I sometimes use it. I always do the Marian anthem and its collect in Latin, even though "it's not about Latin." When you do the office, you remember it's still Christmas until Feb. 2! I love the antiphons. O admirabile commercium: creator generis humani, animatum corpus sumens, de virgine nasci dignatus est, et procedens homo sine semine, largitus est nobis suam deitatem.

Monks are an intense, specialized Christian community. (Full-fledged nuns are women monks.) Specializing in the church's other official prayer besides the Mass, the office: psalms, readings, hymns, and Gospel canticles. Through the Little Office, since the Middle Ages, devout Western laity "in the world" have been able in spirit to join them in prayer. Some, oblates/tertiaries, are extended parts of some communities. Oremus.

1 comment:

  1. I have a version of the Little Office published by Baronius Press. The Psalms are that of the Gallican Psalter/Douay-Rheims, and the remainder of the English translation is that of a version of the Little Office published in the 1860s in England. It follows the 1961 Rubrics (with mention of the previous). It also includes the chant for the Little Office as well. I used it for a time, but haven't of late due to illness and other obligations.The Pius XII Psalter was awkward.

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