Sunday, February 2, 2014

February 2: The Purification of the B. V. M., II Class

N.B.  My Ordo incorrectly shows today as the IV Sunday After The Epiphany, with a privileged commemoration of the Purification of the B. V. M..  This is incorrect.  Although the rubrics state that a II Class Sunday takes precedence over a II Class Universal Feast that is not of our Lord, the Feast of the Purification of the B. V. M. is considered a feast of our Lord, so it takes precedence over the occuring Sunday.

For this feast, the Dominican Rite Office contains a unique arrangement for the office of 1st Vespers.  I do not see it anywhere in the monastic or Roman Breviaries.  After the Little Chapter is prayed, the respond is prayed as follows:

℟. Rejoice, Virgin Mary, alone you have destroyed all heresies. You trusted in the words of the archangel Gabriel. * While a virgin, you brought forth God and man; and after childbirth, you remained a virgin inviolate.  ℣.  We know that the angel Gabriel spoke to you by God's decree; we believe that your womb was made fruitful by the Holy Spirit.  Let the unhappy Jew blush who says that Christ was born of Joseph's seed. - While a virgin. - Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

At this point, the resumption of the respond is omitted, and instead the Inviolata prayer is immediately taken up:
Mary, Maid inviolate, chaste and undefiled,
Mother well beloved of Christ, your own true child.You were made the shining gate of Heaven above,Accept from us these words of praise we offer you with love.We now implore devoutly, from the heart within,That our souls be stainless, our bodies free from sin.May you bring us ever is our earnest prayerThe pardon that is granted through your moving pleading rare.O gracious one who alone has remained immaculate.
A genuflection is made immediately, as the Ave maris stella is begun, until the second stanza.  As far as I know, this is the only incidence in the Dominican Breviary where the sequence of the respond is interrupted, so to speak, with another prayer.