GILH 60-69: Structure of the Office of Readings

The OoR begins as Morning or Evening Prayer would start:

60. If the office of readings is said before morning prayer, the invitatory precedes it, as noted (nos. 34-36). Otherwise it begins with the verse, God, come to my assistance with the Glory to the Father, As it was in the beginning, and the Alleluia (omitted in Lent).

61. Then the hymn is sung. In Ordinary Time this is taken either from the night selections, as already indicated (nos. 34-36), or from the morning selections, depending on what the true time of day requires.

Instead of two psalms plus a canticle, the provision is for three psalms:

62. The psalmody follows and consists of three psalms (or parts in the case of longer psalms). During the Easter triduum, on days within the octaves of Easter and Christmas, on solemnities and feasts, the psalms are proper, with their proper antiphons.

On Sundays and weekdays, however, the psalms and their antiphons are taken from the current week and day of the psalter. On memorials of the saints they are similarly taken from the current week and day of the psalter, unless there are proper psalms or antiphons (see nos. 218ff.).

Before getting to the readings, we have a transition “verse”:

63. Between the psalmody and the readings there is, as a rule, a verse, marking a transition in the prayer from psalmody to listening.

One reading from Scripture, the other from a non-canonical source:

64. There are two readings: the first is from the Scriptures, the second is from the writings of the Fathers or church writers, or else is a reading connected with the saints.

A responsory is provided after each reading:

65. After each reading there is a responsory (see nos. 169-172).

66. The scriptural reading is normally to be taken from the Proper of Seasons, in accordance with the rules to be given later (nos. 140-155). On solemnities and feasts, however, it is taken from the proper or the common.

67. On solemnities and feasts of saints a proper second reading is used; if there is none, the second reading is taken from the respective Common of Saints. On memorials of saints when the celebration is not impeded, the reading in connection with the saint replaces the current second reading (see nos. 166 and 235).

Instead of a Scriptural canticle, the GILH provides for the Te Deum:

68. On Sundays outside Lent, on days within the octaves of Easter and Christmas, and on solemnities and feasts the Te Deum is said after the second reading with its responsory but is omitted on memorials and weekdays. The last part of this hymn, that is, from the verse, Save your people, Lord to the end, may be omitted.

69. The office of readings normally concludes with the prayer proper to the day and, at least in recitation in common, with the acclamation, Let us praise the Lord. R. And give him thanks.

A bit simpler than either of the “hinge” hours, but meatier in terms of the readings assigned. Also note that the Church’s liturgy is not entirely bereft of readings from non-Biblical sources.

Any comments on how this was changed or adapted from the pre-conciliar practice?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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