Easter Vigil (EF) Vespers vs. Lauds
  • quilisma
    Posts: 131
    I notice that after the Easter vigil, according to '62 missal, Lauds is sung, whereas for pre-'55 it's Vespers. The former makes sense as the vigil should end late at night or early in the morning. But if you follow the pre-'55 rite then it would only make sense to sing Vespers if you do the service in the afternoon, as was the custom (or was it even earlier?)
    Is this an example of a discrepancy that needs to be corrected when celebrating the pre-'55 at the "correct" time? Maybe there are other such examples where the content older rites reflected the time at which they were traditionally celebrated?
  • madorganist
    Posts: 631
    Although it would seem to make sense, it is not allowed to make such an alteration to adjust for the time of day. It would require everyone to use multiple books, or at least inserts, including for the altar missal. Note that the liturgical books indicate pro Laudibus and pro Vesperis at the Vigil, in contrast to the usual ad Laudes and ad Vesperas. They are abbreviated substitutes with a single psalm and no hymn. The 1960 breviary does have Easter Matins and Lauds for those who don't participate in the Vigil. I don't know whether older breviaries have Vespers for Holy Saturday.
  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,837
    Our problem is we have changed the meaning of the word Vigil, a Vigil is the Mass and Office said the day before the Feast, so a Vigil Mass should be celebrated in the morning. Many Catholics now believe that a Vigil is an anticipated Mass said in the afternoon / evening so they can avoid doing anything religious on the Sunday.

    I will not write about the changes in practice in the timings of the Easter Vigil, I will leave it to Gueranger, https://archive.org/details/liturgicalyear06gu/page/548/mode/2up his explanations and histories are both scholarly and readable.

    If those in Rome that made the changes were sensible they would have produced for the Easter Vigil, what is found in the books for the Blessing of Epiphany Water, both the Benedictus and the Magnificat are printed, so you can sing the relevant one depending when the Blessing takes place.

    Anyway I would follow the books as written, as the whole of Holy Week is full of anticipations and delays. One more thing out of place will not make a difference.
  • CharlesSA
    Posts: 109
    Well, it certainly would have seemed odd to celebrate Vespers in the morning, as a morning Holy Saturday Vigil/Mass used to be the custom. The breviaries pre-1956 did not include Vespers of Holy Saturday (although I think there may have been the requirement to say Vespers if one did not participate in the Vigil - similar to the requirement post-55 to say Matins/Lauds if not doing the Vigil - which would have been basically the same Vespers as Thursday and Friday, I assume). But Compline is in fact in the older breviaries.

    Dom Gueranger gives excellent commentary for how to think and pray in the context of the morning services then in custom. I think, however, for proponents of the pre-55 Holy Week, that it is reasonable to celebrate the Triduum services at their actual prescribed times - i.e. after None, close to the 9th hour (3pm, give or take) - rather than in the morning. One could have changed the times of the services without altering any of the texts. I am of the opinion that it is more important to celebrate the rites as they organically developed than to be slavishly exact about the timing of the services, but am open to individual parishes adapting the times of the services without substantially changing the rites. But of course there are many differing opinions on this and it can be acknowledged there are both pros and cons to both sides.
    Thanked by 1tomjaw