Ceremonial Question for the Office
  • I'm a little confused on the wording in Fortescue about bowing during Vespers. Does the choir bow only bow when the holy names are sung during the Psalms or also during the antiphons? For example, do we bow at "Maria" in "Tota pulchra es Maria"?
  • Wow, I can't believe no one knows this!
  • Well, I don't recall what Fortescue has to say on this matter; but, the Anglican custom, said by those who passed it on to be universally Catholic (is that a redundancy?), is to bow from the waist at Gloria Patri in the psalms, any liturgical mention of the Most Holy Trinity, and to bow the head at the mention of the holy names of Jesus and Mary in any context, liturgical or otherwise. This is, I'm sure, the custom at all our Anglican Use parishes. (I'll have to check my Fortesue (and Dearmer [and a few Alcuin Club tracts]).
  • Thanks. after reading the context of this entry a bit more closely, it does appear that he is covering the entire service, not just the psalms. Your Anglican reference makes sense and it would surely help when singing the antiphons. We'll try the head bow for those moments outside the psalms.