Litany of the Saints and All Saints Day and All Souls Day Masses
  • SWM
    Posts: 23
    Is it allowable to incorporate the Litany of Saints into the Masses of All Saints Day and All Souls Day in the Ordinary Form of the Latin Rite? If so, how would you incorporate the Litany of the Saints into either or both of these liturgies?

    I looked for answers to this question on the MusicaSacra Forum. There are several discussion threads from years past that address the topic, but I don't see anything in them that definitively show that the use of the Litany of the Saints in either Mass was allowed or not allowed.

    One scholar of chant suggests in several places that the Litany may replace the Entrance Rites up to the Collect Prayer or may be used at the Universal Prayer. Even though he cited some official sources, he failed to provide any sort of detail about what those sources say to support his claim. I'm looking for an answer to this question that includes citation from official sources very soon as All Saints Day and All Souls Day are fast approaching. Thank you to any and all who can help!
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,417
    I would think it would be allowed to add the Litany of SS onto the end of the Mass. After the post-communion collect, and dismissal and blessing are ommitted and the priest (and servers) could go to the altar step; all kneel and the cantor(s) begin the Litany. After the Litany the priest could give a blessing.

    I would only do this on All Saints and keep All Souls for praying for the dead. In my parish we have an old Polish custom of having a short service at the end of Mass where we make four stations at the four corners of the church with various prayers for the dead (priests, parishioners, etc.)
  • I believe that I am the "scholar" in question. SWM seems dissatisfied with my answer or "smvanroode's" answer in a previous thread. I attach the pages from the Ceremonial of Bishops. In my opinion, the Litany of the Saints is not appropriate for All Souls Day. In my opinion it should never be used at the end of Mass as "Salieri" describes.
  • I doubt that this is liturgically correct but at my parish they use it as the entrance "hymn."
  • SWM
    Posts: 23
    Dr Ford,

    My post originated after my reading of past posts at

    http://forum.musicasacra.com/forum/discussion/2595/litany-of-the-saints-for-all-saints-day/p1

    where you say that "The solemn litany IS appropriate, either as the entrance rite or as the prayer of the faithful. See the Ceremonial of Bishops, §261." You just provided a scan of Ceremonial of Bishops, §261. I see no reference to All Saints Day liturgy in §261. I don't disagree that you could sing the Litany of the Saints at Entrance using the "alius cantus aptus" provision of the GIRM. I could even see the application of §261 to the All Saints Day Entrance Rites in omitting the Penitential Rite and Kyrie. But it doesn't explain whether or not a Gloria should be sung, or whether omitting the Penitential Rite and Kyrie is even licit if the Litany of the Saints is sung.

    I found your comment about the use of the Litany of the Saints at the Prayer of the Faithful most interesting, however, because I considered having my choir sing the Litany at that time of the Mass on All Saints Day. After the Litany was chanted, a chanted Universal Prayer would follow. While I liked the idea and find it interesting that you suggest something similar, you haven't shown how it would be licit to precede or replace the Universal Prayer with a Litany of the Saints. I myself can find no provision for ever doing such a thing, even though I might be inclined to want to do that. Why do you believe that the Litany of the Saints is appropriate as the Prayer of the Faithful?
  • The Litany of the Saints takes the place of the Prayer of the Faithful at the Mass for the Dedication of a Church and of an Altar (cf. Ceremonial of Bishops 899 and 943). I don't have an English edition of the Ceremonial of Bishops (I work with the Latin edition and an online Italian translation), but Paul Ford might be able to provide scans of the latter two paragraphs in English.
  • Doesn't the Litany of the Saints also take the place of the Universal Prayer in ordination and consecration Masses?
  • Yes, ClemensRomanus. In fact there is only one liturgy in the OF where the Litany of the Saints AND the Universal Prayer are used in the same liturgy: the Easter Vigil, when there are baptisms. This is why, SWM, I "believe that the Litany of the Saints is appropriate as the Prayer of the Faithful."

    But, if you use the Litany as part of the Introductory Rites, you stop at the end of the list of saints and resume the Litany at the time of the Universal Prayer with the petitions.

    There are two warrants for occasionally using the Litany of the Saints as the major feature of the Introductory Rites: historical and liturgical. The historical warrant can be recognized in the fragments of the ancient litanies that are still in the Mass of the Roman Rite: The Kyrie eleison, the Universal Prayer, and the Agnus Dei; the solemn litany contains all of these elements—hence no need for a Universal Prayer. Warrant can also be found in the retention in the Ordinary Form of the Masses for Various Needs and Occasions (GIRM 373 and 394) and of Rogation and Ember Days (Universal Norms on the Liturgical Year and the Calendar, 45–47).

    The liturgical warrant can be found in GIRM 46: "In certain celebrations that are combined with Mass according to the norms of the liturgical books, the Introductory Rites are omitted or take place in a particular way" ("In quibusdam celebrationibus, quae cum Missa ad normam librorum liturgicorum conectuntur, ritus initiales omittuntur aut modo peculiari peraguntur").

    One such liturgical book is the Ceremonial of Bishops, of use to more than bishops because it indicates how less common liturgies are executed. It is true that the Ceremonial mentions the Litany In the Introductory Rites as part of the First Sunday of Lent, in which a Gloria would never figure. Even so, I don't think a Gloria is needed on All Saints Day because of the unusual solemnity of the Litaniae Sanctorum in solemnibus supplicationibus adhibendae (Graduale Romanum, 831ff).

    In all of this I am guided by the principle of interpretation of liturgical law: "Liturgical law is subject to a broad interpretation ('stretches the meaning of the text to allow the most favorable interpretation without going beyond the meaning of the law' except 'where the values underlying the law would be harmed') in its (1) legal, historical, theological, and cultural context, (2) immediate context, (3) relations within the same book or rite, and (4) relation to other similar books and rites, according to custom which is (1) in accord with the law, (2) apart from the law, (3) contrary to the law, and (4) a factual custom. [Customs #2 and #3 do not easily become recognized as legitimate by canon law.]"

    I hope I have addressed all of your questions and concerns. If not, please let's continue the conversation.

    Blessings,
    Paul
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen tomboysuze
  • SWM
    Posts: 23
    Thank you, Dr. Ford. You have answered my specific question. I myself don't subscribe to the principle of broad interpretation of liturgical law. But even if I did, I'm not sure how replacing the Universal Prayer with the Litany of the Saints at All Saints Day Mass is supported by broad interpretation. It sounds as though Ceremonial of Bishops 899 and 943 is being applied to All Saints Mass more as innovation rather than broad interpretation of any specific law or permission. Could I sing the Litany of the Saints at every Sunday Mass during the month of August, for example, if I broadly interpret Ceremonial of Bishops 899 and 943 to mean that I am allowed to do so and that I believe I should for some given reason?

    I found your document about liturgical law that references your principle of interpretation and includes more context here. It states that "[a]s part of canon law, liturgical law shares [canon law's] purpose by ensuring the unity and authenticity of Catholic worship within and among the many local churches." If broad interpretation of liturgical law finds you apart from the law (Custom #2) or contrary to the law (Custom #3), are you then not working against the promotion of "harmony and unity in the external life of the church", which is the stated purpose of canon law?

    Isn't such broad interpretation also in direct conflict with what the Second Vatican Council decreed in the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, specifically item 22.3?

    22.
    1. Regulation of the sacred liturgy depends solely on the authority of the Church, that is, on the Apostolic See and, as laws may determine, on the bishop.
    2. In virtue of power conceded by the law, the regulation of the liturgy within certain defined limits belongs also to various kinds of competent territorial bodies of bishops legitimately established.
    3. Therefore no other person, even if he be a priest, may add, remove, or change anything in the liturgy on his own authority.

    Your liturgical law document states that "The deepest purpose of liturgical law, therefore, is to promote effective experiences of worship that are always fresh, living expressions of the manifold cultures of the local churches." I'm not sure I agree with that either. I don't attend Mass with the goal of feeling that my experience was effective for me personally and that my culture was properly expressed during worship. Isn't the deepest purpose of liturgical law to promote worship of God in a way that "protect[s] important truths and realities of the faith according to the principle lex orandi lex credendi", rather than a personal experience of worship that is satisfying to oneself and an expression of culture?

    The Latin Rite as prescribed by the Roman Missal and other authoritative documents and pronouncements already allows for broad interpretation--just look at the options available at the Penitential Act, the Prefaces and Eucharistic Prayer, and yes, even the music at Entrance, Offertory, and Communion, not to mention all of the liturgical rubrics in the Roman Missal that allow for pastoral discretion. To use a principle of broad interpretation to do things that change the structure of the liturgy itself is damaging to the liturgy, deprives the people of the right to authentic liturgy (see Code of Canon Law 214), and violates Sacrosanctum Concilium 22.3, as well as some of the most recent documents, pronouncements, and guidelines of the Church Herself.

    I'm not sure how you reconcile the principles of broad interpretation of liturgical law found in your document, which according to your citations are based on non-authoritative sources (all of which are over twenty years old), with the authoritative teaching of the Church found in Sacrosanctum Concilium and the Code of Canon Law.

    I realize this conversation has gone beyond the simple conversation of if and when to sing the Litany of the Saints during All Saints Mass, but my bigger concern is the slippery slope to liturgical chaos and misrepresentation of Church teaching that the principle of broad interpretation of liturgical law seems to foster.
  • SWM
    Posts: 23
    A ZENIT Daily Dispatch posted here on EWTN.com addresses a similar question. It mentions that

    "The litany is used during baptism, ordination, during blessings and consecrations of places (churches) and people, during the Easter Vigil...[Its] essential function is to implore the saints' intercession and God's protection before a particular moment or rite of special significance. They are also sometimes used in processions; for example, a special litany of the saints sometimes accompanies the entrance procession for some especially significant and solemn papal celebrations."

    This would support the idea of praying the Litany of the Saints during a procession to the church before Mass. But is the Universal Prayer on All Saints Day a particular moment or rite of special significance? While all prayer is significant, I don't believe that this moment of the Mass is especially significant to the place or the people involved in All Saints Day Mass.

  • SWM, you are not to be convinced, it seems. When you don't agree with the purpose of liturgical law and "don't subscribe to the principle of broad interpretation of liturgical law," you are not just misunderstanding and disagreeing with me but also with the most trusted sources on the interpretation of liturgical law in North America, from whose writings I derived every word on my chart.

    My chart on liturgical law has been vetted by any number of reliable canonists and found correct. I teach the very documents you say I dissent from. I am a professor of ecclesiology and sacramental theology. I have taken the oath of fidelity and made the profession of faith; I teach with a canonical mission at the seminary of Archbishop José Gomez. My students and colleagues will testify that I am quite conservative in matters liturgical, and most other matters.

    Please send this discussion to Father McNamara of Zenit and get his interpretation, if you don't think I can be trusted.

    I appreciate your zeal for the liturgy and pray that you will appreciate mine.

    Blessings,
    Paul
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen tomboysuze
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    The problem with being an amateur rubricist is that everything seems so incredibly clear if you haven't wandered too far into the forest. The ever-increasing anti-academic fundamentalism doesn't help either.

    SWM- if you think it's not allowed, then don't do it. If you think it's allowed, and you want to do it, then do it. If someone else is planning to do it, and you are looking for ammunition for an argument, find something better to do with your time.
  • SWM
    Posts: 23
    Adam Wood, if a self-described "progressive/liberal and sometimes 'heretic' " calls me an amateur rubricist, I'll take that as a huge compliment. So much is obviously wrong with your advice to do what I think is allowed and don't do what I think is not allowed that I won't bother to discuss it. I hope you actually attempt to research the appropriateness of the music you program for liturgy instead of just doing what you think or feel you want to do.


    Dr. Ford, I don't intend disrespect to you or what you teach, but I was trying to make a good faith effort to understand it for myself, particularly if it seems to be in conflict with my current understanding of liturgical law. I asked some pointed questions that I hoped you would answer to clarify apparent contradictions I see in this discussion, in other discussions in which you've posted, and in your own teaching materials. I provided information that seems to counter your own that I hoped you would address. This was not an argument for the sake of argument or rubricism for its own sake. I asked you to show me why what you teach is correct. I hope that the students in your classes are allowed to ask questions and challenge what you teach. And I hope that you continue to learn new things from your students and others on occasion as well. I've asked many this same original question about the Litany of the Saints over the past several days. I've heard a wide variety of opinions that indicate the Litany of the Saints can easily be integrated into the liturgy of All Saints Day. But you're still the only one who suggests that replacing the Universal Prayer with the litany on All Saints Day is permissible. The priest director of my own diocesan Office of Liturgy said it should not replace the Universal Prayer, and so that is the direction I intend to follow. I appreciate the time you've taken to discuss this matter with me. Know that I admire your contributions to Catholic music and liturgy, particularly By Flowing Waters, which holds an honored place in my collection of music resources (I hope it will be updated to include the new English translation of the Roman Missal). I appreciate your zeal for the liturgy as well.
    Thanked by 1tomboysuze
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,764
    For better or worse, SMH, I've come to accept that church law is often looser than I might like. Some statements in law documents are specific commands. Some are statements of principle or exhortations. Sometimes one document seems to contradict another, and it's hard to tell whether some action is permitted. So if someone tells you that the law is vague at times -- after all, it was written in Italy, to be interpreted by Italians! -- they may just be giving you their best information.

    Often the best answer I can give someone is the advice to take an uncertain question to your diocesan office for worship to get an authoritative answer. In terms of doing your duty as a conscientious Catholic, you can't go wrong with that.
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen Adam Wood
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    I did not say, "if you wish it was allowed" or "if you think it should be allowed." Indeed, I take a fairly conservative interpretation of liturgical law precisely because I do not think that I have the knowledge or expertise to interpret such things.

    I, personally, would not program the Litany of the Saints as suggested above. Why? I am not in a position to rule on it's appropriateness. I don't know enough.

    That was the root of my suggestion to you- if it is up to you and your decision, and you are unconvinced, then don't do it.

    If it is not up to you, then your grilling of Dr. Ford is being propelled by a desire to convince someone else to either do it or not do it, or because you have some weird puritanical need to know if someone else is doing something right or wrong, regardless of whether or not you would do the thing anyway.

    I have recommended over and over that the robustness principle should be respected in these sorts of situations.

    Also, I'm smart enough to know who is smarter than me. I wouldn't argue liturgics with Dr. Ford.
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen Gavin
  • JahazaJahaza
    Posts: 464
    If it is not up to you, then your grilling of Dr. Ford is being propelled by a desire to convince someone else to either do it or not do it, or because you have some weird puritanical need to know if someone else is doing something right or wrong, regardless of whether or not you would do the thing anyway.

    There's the obvious additional example of cooperation. For instance, a pastor asks the music director or the choir director asks the choir member to do something. Just because you're not the initiator of an act doesn't mean you have no responsbility for it.

    Also if we assume your schema, you're hoist on your own petard. Since you're not in a position to decide whether or not he would argue with Dr. Ford, you're yourself motivated by one of your own unaacceptable motives in arguing about whether he should do so.
    Thanked by 1SWM
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    I can't really figure out if I agree with what you said there, jah, but I'll take the point that me being a judgmental @$$ in condemnation of someone else being a judgmental @$$ is... "not optimal."

    image
  • Thank you all for this discussion. I believe this type of back and forth is very useful.
    I would love to dig into this...(however, as I just lost my organist and have to regroup my entire music program using subs/etc. to replace him - I do not have time to do any research, or even read the above thread very deeply. Mea Culpa. )
    My quick read of this thread tells me:
    1. It may be appropriate as a substitute for the pray of the faithful. However, that will never happen in my parish.
    Could I:
    a. Use it to replace the offertory hymn?
    B. if all else fails, I will probably do it as a prelude or postlude - will the faithful be scandalized?
    Many thanks.



    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • SWM
    Posts: 23
    Oh Adam, resorting to name-calling now are we? Why don't you find something better to do with your time? It seems you've wandered far into the forest, to quote your own cliché, in this conversation about a serious liturgical matter in which you've been at best an interloper and at worst a troll. Do you keep a stack of those cutesy pictures at hand for all of your discussion board arguments, or did you actually spend some amount of time finding the right picture to attempt stick it to me? Good show. (clap...clap) Good. (clap) Show. (yawn)
  • JahazaJahaza
    Posts: 464
    Whoa. OK... I understand why feelings are somewhat heightened here, but I don't think that's useful.
  • JahazaJahaza
    Posts: 464
    A quick sketch of why I don't think either of these solutions (prayer of the faithful or entrance rite) are particularly good solutions for incorporating the Litany of the Saints into an All Saints Day Mass.

    I'm glad that Dr. Ford calls our attention to the neglected section of the new Ceremonial of Bishops regarding stational processions. I'd love to see these more widely revived and, as the CB suggests, extended beyond the city of Rome, both during Lent and as Dr. Ford helpfully suggests on other days of a penitential or quasi-pentitential character such as "Masses for Various Needs and Occasions ... and [Masses] of Rogation and Ember Days".

    However, two things have to be kept in mind with regard to this. 1) These have a penitential or intercessory character in a way that All Saints doesn't. 2) The CB doesn't just suggest replacing parts of the introductory rite with the Litany of Saints, but doing them differently in a different place. It's not just singing the Litany of the Saints and going on with the Mass from the collect, it's meeting in another place. Introducing the celebration (song, greeting), praying a collect, and then processing to a different place. If a procession is not possible, one could perhaps alter this mutatis mutandis in the way that the Solemn Entrance transforms the procession at the beginning of the Palm Sunday liturgy, but you'd still have something a) very substantial and more complex than omitting the entrance rite and b) something pentitential or quasi-penitential that isn't really appropriate on All Saints Day.

    As for using the Litany of the Saints in the place of the Universal Prayer/Prayer of the Faithful:

    In fact there is only one liturgy in the OF where the Litany of the Saints AND the Universal Prayer are used in the same liturgy: the Easter Vigil, when there are baptisms. This is why, SWM, I "believe that the Litany of the Saints is appropriate as the Prayer of the Faithful.'

    But in all these cases, some other rite (ordination, consecration of a Church, etc.) takes place along with the Litany, which does not stand on its own.

    In an ordinary Mass, the Litany would seem to unbalance the liturgy, being vastly longer than the Universal Prayer is.

    Also, the largest portion of the Litany, seeking the intercession of the Saints, doesn't seem to match the purpose of the universal prayer, "In the Universal Prayer or Prayer of the Faithful, the people respond in some sense to the Word of God which they have received in faith and, exercising the office of their baptismal Priesthood, offer prayers to God for the salvation of all." Seeking the intercession of the saints seems to be something different than what is intended here.

    (Lest anyone having read this still thinks I'm a rubrical fundamentalist, they can examine these photographs that show me MCing a novus ordo Mass with priests acting as deacon and subdeacon.)

  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    Dude... lighten up. I wasn't name calling anyone other than myself.
    My last post was intended to be sincere. (As were my other ones).

    The comic comes from a series written by a friend of mine, detailing how morally flawed we are as people, and how much we need God's grace.

    I had no intention of riling you- my apologies.
  • rogue63
    Posts: 405
    A further question:

    Can the Litany of the Saints, used as a processional, licitly replace the Penitential Rite,i.e., the Kyrie? No desire to fan any flames, just wanting to know.
  • SWM
    Posts: 23
    Jahaza, thank you for such a cogent explanation of why the Litany of the Saints is inappropriate at both Entrance and Universal Prayer. I am quite convinced that it is inappropriate to preface or replace the Universal Prayer with the Litany of the Saints for the very reasons you stated. Let me introduce another potential use of the Litany of the Saints during All Saints Day Mass as I'd be interested to hear what you think of it. Priests often append additional intentions to the Universal Prayer after the deacon or lector has finished reading the prepared intentions. Often, the priest then follows his intentions by leading the congregation in the recitation of the "Hail, Mary". First, is this a licit practice, and second, if it is, would it be any less appropriate to pray the Litany of the Saints at this time at the end of the Universal Prayer but before the Presentation of the Gifts and Preparation of the Altar? After all, we are praying for Mary's intercession when we pray the "Hail, Mary" following the Universal Prayer.
  • JahazaJahaza
    Posts: 464
    Jahaza, thank you for such a cogent explanation of why the Litany of the Saints is inappropriate at both Entrance and Universal Prayer.

    Well, that's a bit more than I said.

    I wouldn't have much of a problem with using it at the entrance as "alius cantus aptus" (not replacing any of the other parts of the entrance rite.) I probably wouldn't choose to do it, or encourage it, but I wouldn't "object" if someone wanted to do it.

    Let me introduce another potential use of the Litany of the Saints during All Saints Day Mass as I'd be interested to hear what you think of it. Priests often append additional intentions to the Universal Prayer after the deacon or lector has finished reading the prepared intentions.

    The priest should be praying the collect, not adding additional intentions, which should be given to the lector or deacon before the liturgy, but this is a very minor matter that I wouldn't be fascistic about).

    Often, the priest then follows his intentions by leading the congregation in the recitation of the "Hail, Mary". First, is this a licit practice,

    I think this is generally not a licit practice, however, there are many places, especially in the United Kingdom where it has emerged as a custom and is probably licit in those places.

    and second, if it is, would it be any less appropriate to pray the Litany of the Saints at this time at the end of the Universal Prayer but before the Presentation of the Gifts and Preparation of the Altar?

    I think replacing the collect at the end of the Universal Prayer with the Litany of Saints is worse than just replacing the Universal Prayer with the Litany of the Saints.
    Thanked by 1SWM
  • ryandryand
    Posts: 1,545
    See attachment
    400 x 400 - 56K
  • marajoymarajoy
    Posts: 781
    Since I don't think this has been pointed out yet in this thread, the Litany of the Saints is simply not appropriate on All Saints Day, period.
    All Saints Day is the feast day to mainly celebrate all of the unknown Saints and those without feast days - not the ones who have feasts days, which are the ones in the Litany!
    Thanked by 2SWM Gavin
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    really?

    (i meant that sincerely)
  • marajoymarajoy
    Posts: 781
    Yes. If, over the course of history, as liturgists and those who wrote "the rubrics" had thought it appropriate to have the Litany on All Saints, then don't you think they would have told us where to put it, and we wouldn't be having this conversation?
    Thanked by 1Chrism
  • marajoymarajoy
    Posts: 781
    I welcome evidence indicating that there is ANY historical basis to using the Litany of the Saints on the Feast of All Saints.
    Thanked by 1Chrism
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    >>ANY historical basis to using the Litany of the Saints on the Feast of All Saints.

    I suppose "we did it when I was a kid" is insufficient.
  • Chrism
    Posts: 663
    > "we did it when I was a kid"

    That's the only statement I can think of right now that makes "how old are you" a polite question.
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,417
    Something that just came to me :

    The Litany of Saints is usually sung when someone is petitioning for some favour or protection, and usualy connected with a liturgical act of a poenitential nature (i.e. Violet vestments); All Saints is a Solemnity (with White Vestments) - it is a feast for rejoicing not petitioning.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    unlike the Easter Vigil, which is not rejoiceful at all
    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Definition of LITANY (M/W)

    a prayer consisting of a series of invocations and supplications by the leader with alternate responses by the congregation
    a : a resonant or repetitive chant
    b : a usually lengthy recitation or enumeratio
    c : a sizable series or set

    Litanies, like tropes, are by definition accretions to primary liturgical texts. There is nothing inherently penitential about their nature. Supplicative yes, groveling, no. If so, why would "Kyrie eleison/Lord, have mercy" be a proper response to invocations of the Universal Prayer?
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,764
    The Byzantine-rite guy is asking why "Kyrie eleison" is a proper response in a litany of petition? Explain. :-)
    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,417
    Appologies in advance, if I ruffle anyone's feathers...

    ...[T]here is nothing inherently penitential about their nature

    But their traditional USE in the Latin Rite is for supplication. And many of those days where the Litany was sung were considered penitential days (no meat, etc.), such as the Rogation processions, processions to beg for clement weather, rain, etc., and includes (usually) the singing of Psalm 69 (Deus in adjutorium meum), and a long set of petitions and collects.

    It also seems to say something that in the Rituale Romanum, Vol. I (1948), pg. 344/345, puts the Seven Penitential Psalms and the Litany together in the same section.

    In re the Eater Vigil : In the traditional rite (Missal 1962) the first half of the liturgy (the vigil, including the Litany) is sung with VIOLET vestments, the second half (Mass) with WHITE vestments. Easter not actually beginning until the Mass (Kyrie, Gloria, collect, etc.) the solemn vigil remains part of Holy Saturday and is a day of fast and penance.

    I'm not claiming that the litany itself is ipso facto penitential, but it seems that the times when its liturgical use is ordered by the Church, these days are penitential in character; and this supplicatory/penitential character may well be part of the living memory of many parishioners, particularly in places that still sing 40 Hours, the Rogations Processions, etc.

    It is also worth noting that in processions of Thanksgiving (cf. Rituale Romanum pg. 550/551) the Litany is NOT sung, but the Te Deum and other festive Psalms (i.e. 116) are. That being said, the Litany is also sung at Ordinations (I do not have the Ordo for Ordinations with me (Tridentine), so I do not know what the rubrics are about the vestments for that liturgy), which is in many ways festive.

    I do not claim to be an expert; and if anyone can show me where I am wrong by looking at the traditional Roman liturgical books (pre-1965), I would appreciate it greatly.

    Also, while I am all for legitimate "cross polination", if you will, between the East and the West; we as Latin Rite Catholics should re-capture our own traditions, and not try to turn the Latin Rite Mass into a Byzantine Divine Liturgy.
    Thanked by 3SWM Chrism CCooze
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 794
    Just my opinion, but I probably wouldn't choose the litany over the propers, but when it comes to option 4 it seems to be a better choice than say Gather Us In.
    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Darn, Earl Grey! I thought that what with your moniker, you were feeling particularly "rich and haughty" with me this evening as I tend the door alone.
  • The moniker was just part of my halloween costume.