Tuesday, February 2, 2016

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

Today, in the 1962 Dominican Rite calendar, we celebrate the Purification of the B.V.M., and the official end of Christmastide. The feast is II Class, and so the semi-festive office is prayed according to the rubrics.

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 responsory is prayed as follows:

R/.  Gaude, María Virgo, cunctas hǽreses sola interemísti, quæ Gabriélis Archángeli dictis credidísti: * Dum Virgo Deum et hóminem genuísti, Et post partum Virgo invioláta permansísti. . Gabriélem Archángelum scimus divínitus te esse affátum: úterum tuum de Spíritu Sancto crédimus imprægnátum:  erubéscat Iudǽus infélix, qui dicit Christum ex Ioseph sémine esse natum. – Dum Virgo. – Glória. – Et post partum Virgo invioláta permansísti.
R/.  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. – And after childbirth.

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 prayer, the 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.

The Gaude, María Virgo responsory is repeated after Lesson ix at Matins as well, in place of the Te Deum, as is prayed in the Roman Breviary.