May 20th, 1998, Serial No. 00291

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Liturgy Class

AI Summary: 





In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen. Amen. I didn't get it for the tape. Father, you gave Saint Bernadine a special love for the holy name of Jesus. By the help of his prayers, may we always be alive with the spirit of your love. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen. Thank you. Kind of get a good rousing amen for the liturgy class tape there. Is it not going? It is. Okay. So, you missed a really important class last week. We talked about the Egyptian desert tradition, which was the most fun for me. I was here for last week. Well, you were here last week. That's why you're not on it. But you missed it anyway. Okay. I heard your voice in the tape. Yeah, because you mentioned your friend had been. Yes, yes.


Okay. But where we're going, I tried to spare you any more maps after I was taunted so strongly last week. But this is where we're going, which the decisive element, the decisive era for the Western monastic tradition, of course, is going to be the rule of St. Benedict. I mean, our whole world revolves around that decisive moment, that decisive era. All these things are going to feed into it. That's where we're going. The last little piece we haven't talked about yet very strongly is this Western monastic tradition, and that's where we're going today. Just to give you a review of—just to remind you—where was it? Oh, darn it. Hold on one second. I'm sorry. I've got to have that page marked. Yes, here it is.


Sorry about that. Just that quote again from Robert Taft that we ended last week with about the 4th century Egyptian monastic office. In the beginning, the liturgy was not a part of monastic life. Even the celebration of the Eucharist did not occupy any special place in it. All that was the affair of the clergy, not the monk. The monk's part was to pray in his heart without ceasing. So Taft says, What is far more important than the hours of the synaxes and their structure and content is the spirit of this pristine monastic prayer of the 4th century Egyptian desert. From what we have seen, it's obvious that the pure monastic office of the Egyptians was less a liturgical ceremony or service than a common meditation on sacred scripture. He even goes so far as to call it an Ignatian contemplation with colloquy done in common, similar to that. Now, you wouldn't be surprised that a Jesuit would say something like that, perhaps. Than what we are used to in later monastic offices, in which psalmody becomes our praise of God


rather than God's saving word to us. That's what's happening in Egypt. It's not necessarily what's happening in the West. And this will be our last piece to feed into our talk on St. Benedict, and we may get to that even today, too. So there are many different sources we have, not any of them real complete, except for the Rule of the Master, of different traditions that are going on in the West. The first one, the first major one, is a 4th century document called the Ordii Monasterii, which was a document that was very influential both to the rule of Augustine, who had his own rather urban monastic tradition coming out of Carthage, and the rule of Caesarius, a Gallic monastic tradition. Now, the Ordii Monasterii prescribes a full cycle of six hours for its monks.


Matin tersex non lucinarium nocturns, which employed, they tell us, responsorial and antiphonal psalmody as well as scripture readings. So nothing too surprising about that. And then, of course, back to our friend Cassian. In his second and third book of the Institutes, he describes some characteristics then of the monastic office in southern Gaul, his own monasteries. Now remember, he spends 19 years in the desert, goes back to Gaul to reform his own form of monasticism, taking back with him the information that he got and the experience he had in Egypt. Well, part of his Institutes then, he also describes what's going on, and we derive some information of what's going on in his own monasteries. Little things. He didn't conclude nocturnes with the loudest psalms,


but had a separate morning office. Now, that may not seem too significant, but what we have here is two different offices going on in the morning. So perhaps what he's doing is already developing this tradition as we have it now of celebrating a vigil service, not ending it with 148, 149, and 150. Remember, those are the loudest psalms from where morning prayer gets its name, lauds, but having a separate service of loudest. So maybe he's combining both the ascetic tradition of nocturnes with the cenobitic tradition of loudest, and celebrating both offices and not one or the other. Though recall, the office of the laura, of the ascetics, was not considered a night office. Their nocturnes, even though it was taking place in the middle of the night, that was really their morning office. But perhaps he took both of these together. There's so many different trends going in. And then 6th century, not far removed from St. Benedict,


in Arles, France, now France, both Caesareus and Aurelian of Arles, in their description of their life, they have nocturnes, matins, the little hours, plus this other one that I've only seen one other place, Duo De Cima, do you know that office? At the 12th hour. The only place I've ever seen it is in the Anglican tradition. I saw the office of Duo De Cima. Now, there is not a record of them celebrating Vesper, so that might have been their Vesper service. It didn't catch on. It would have been way too many hours. And Aurelian adds on the office of Prime and Compline as well. In just a few moments we're going to talk about the origin, how those offices came into their prominence. On the big feasts, now this is a little tiny but important element.


On the big feasts, the monks of Arles celebrated the cathedral hours for the people in a public oratory. So people would come to watch or participate with, but mainly to watch the monks sing the office. What's developing, what's going to develop out of this same thing, is this notion of monks peopling, manning cathedrals, so that the monks are celebrating the office for the people, so the people can come and watch the monks celebrate the office. Do you see what I'm saying? Not that the people are singing the office by themselves, not that the monks are singing the office as a domestic thing, but the monks are doing it as a public service. This is going to really grow. Merton complains about this in The Silent Life. Now of course we have the rule for monks from St. Columba,


the Celtic tradition, who went by way of England to Gaul to set up monasteries, bringing with him the very strict Celtic usage, bringing with him the penitentials, what are those books called? Penitentiaries, where they also codified different penances that you would do for different crimes. It was all listed, you could just look it up. Well, the one interesting thing about the Irish monks, of course the Irish are always the kind of storm troopers of asceticism, they have an amazing number of psalms. In the night office, in the winter, 100 psalms, just for the night office. They keep you warm. I guess so. They probably have a little flask with them that we would do for the Father. Lamentations.


Yeah, and all lamentations. They skipped over the praise psalms completely. In Spain, this would be a little later, this would be late 6th century, early 7th century, we have Isidore of Seville, Fructuosis of Braga. You like them? Isidore. We have records of the Spanish monastic office that's similar to the office of Southern Gaul. None of them are going to be as detailed as what we're coming up upon. Our major source here is the infamous Rule of the Master. Now, for those who have been through all this before, you know what the Rule of the Master is. I assume there's a few people who haven't had even a course on this, so I'm going to just explain a little bit about the Rule of the Master. It's not quite sure the origin of the Rule of the Master. There's no unanimity concerning its development or its origin,


but one school of thought holds that it originated near Rome, early 6th century. For a long time, it was thought that the Rule of the Master was derived from the Rule of St. Benedict, but more recent scholarship of this century has shown that it's, in fact, the other way around. The Rule of the Master is a longer, more complex rule, and it looks as if St. Benedict lifted large portions of the Rule of the Master and incorporated them into his rule instead. Both the author and the place of origin of the Rule of the Master are still objects of dispute. Nobody's sure who wrote it. There were suggestions that the Rule of the Master could actually have been an earlier composition of Benedict himself, perhaps when he was living in Subiaco, but it's kind of hard to prove.


But the Rule of the Master lays out a very strict liturgical cycle for his monks, the Master does. And he leaves them with these offices, Nocturnes, Matins, the Little Hours, meaning terse sex that no, no prime, Vespers, and Compline. They're all there. He does have an all-night vigil, the Rule of the Master. And every one of these offices have the same structure. Every office celebrated the same way. There is antiphonal and or responsorial psalmody. There's a reading from St. Paul and a reading from the Gospel. And then a very interesting cathedral element, not a monastic element, there are intercessions in the office of the Rule of the Master. Except for at Matins and Compline,


the psalms were taken continuously, so straight through according to their number without any regard for time of day, time of night, except for Matins and Compline. Now we're going to see this tradition carry on also. Like the desert tradition, the Rule of the Master also retains this praxis of doxology, prostration, silent prayer. Each psalm had that. Now, if you recall, the Egyptians did not use the doxology at the end of every psalm. In the Rule of the Master, every psalm has a doxology, a prostration, and a time of silent prayer. What often gets left out in our discussion of the monastic tradition is the urban monks, the urban monastic tradition,


what's growing out of the devout Christians of leisure. In the West, there were also monks living in the cities. And of course, liturgically speaking, they could not help but be influenced by the liturgical customs of the parochial churches which they surrounded. And in the urban monastic tradition, there was especially an adaptation of the practice of how the cathedral traditions celebrated both morning prayer and evening prayer. And then the urban monastic tradition is going to add the daytime prayer. Some scholars will say it's specifically out of the urban monastic tradition that the celebration of the little hours is really going to take its final form. And they had vigils, which they called either nocturnes or night office


or the midnight office. They may have added compa as well. So the urban monastic tradition is combining elements traditional among the ascetics with popular customs derived from the cathedral tradition. This mixture of elements is going to have so much influence on the office of the rule of St. Benedict, especially what's called the old Roman hours. Mainly, the only evidence we have about the old Roman hours is from hints in St. Benedict's. Just a little aside, there's also something called the old Roman chant. Most of the body of Gregorian chant that we know is not from Rome. It's not even from Italy. Most of it's from Gaul. It was collected and brought back to Rome. The tradition of singing in Rome was, we speculate, much simpler, much more straightforward thing. Scholars who really know this kind of stuff can go through the Gregorian repertoire


and look for and find the old evidence of the old Roman chant because of the specific different way that they sang. This is connected with this old Roman office, which is very important because it was influential to Benedict. A little quote from In saying that the Roman office was a source for the rule of St. Benedict's liturgical code, we need to be precise about what we mean by Roman. Two traditions existed simultaneously at Rome. One, the office as recited by urban monks in various churches in the city, and another, the cathedral tradition of the Roman church followed by clergy and laity. Characteristically, the Roman monastic office included the common celebration of vigils and the little hours. That's the Roman monastic office.


The cathedral element of Rome was organized around the principal hours of lauds and vespers. So, the monks of Rome, the urban monks, are celebrating vigils and the little hours. The cathedral is celebrating lauds and vespers. Benedict uses the Roman monastic tradition as a basic source, though he occasionally manifests some influence from the cathedral tradition as well. So, there were monastic foundations in the city of Rome as early as 6th to 3rd, so that would be early 5th century, or 32-440 was Sixtus' reign. Augustine and Jerome, earlier yet, write of communities of virgins and monks living in Rome and in Milan. But more importantly, beginning in the Lateran, St. John's Lateran Cathedral and St. Peter's in the 5th century, the great basilicas of Rome themselves


began to be served by monastic communities. So, these are not the monks living out in the wilderness of Fugamundi. These are monks living right in the middle of civilization and serving liturgically, serving the urban community. These are the ancestors of what we call the canons, the premonstrations and the Lateran canons, for example. There's also Augustinian canons, I think they're called Austin canons. Something like this. I know you're probably tired of hearing all these cursuses, cursi, but just to give you an idea. Their vigils service was probably something like this. A weekly distribution of Psalms of 1 through 107. Vespers, a continuous weekly distribution of Psalms 108 through 150. And then a continuous reading of Scripture at vigils,


so that the whole Bible would be read from the beginning of the year to the end. Matins, lauds, the little hours in Compton all had fixed psalms. Twelve psalms at vigils, except on Sunday when there were 24. Six psalms at lauds, six at vespers, and three at each of the little hours in Compton. Still much longer office than we're used to. So, in RB 13, what is it, 13.3, Benedict says, On other days, however, a canticle from the prophets is said, according to the practice of the Roman church. This is what Benedict is talking about. Now, just a little side trip here,


to talk about the Roman Catholic Church. Prime and Compton. The reason I put them off to the side is they have an odder development than the other offices, and curious history. It's also another case where studying the history of the office becomes a little chapter in monastic history, and actually, if you haven't guessed by now, it's really what I'm trying to aim at, is give a little swoop of monastic history while talking about the office. The office of Prime, meaning prime as in first hour, first hour of the day, first appears in Cassian, who mentions its existence in Saint Jerome's monastery in Bethlehem. So, an urban tradition. As the name says, it was supposed to take place at the Ora Prima, the first hour of daylight, so probably around 6 a.m. It seems to have evolved out of a combination of different monastic practices


that came together eventually. Something like this. The monks would have a short rest between the end of Laodice and the beginning of the day's work. Remember, Laodice is taking place much earlier than we would have it. And that rest would conclude with a time of prayer. So, have Laodice, take a rest. At the end of that rest, you would have a time of prayer before you would leave the dormitory. And that time of prayer would generally be two or three psalms, because the psalms are the prayer book of the monk. Later, what would develop in some of the western monastic offices, traditions, is then there would be a morning meeting in what's called the chapter room, at which various times different practices would develop. Something like this. A reading of the list of martyrs to be commemorated would be read. Job assignments would be given out,


followed by a prayer that everyone would do their job well. We could do that, couldn't we, Father? C. Then the community would sit down and listen to a reading of a chapter of their monastic rule, whatever their monastic rule happened to be, with a commentary by their Abba, their Abbot, concluding with a blessing. Incidentally, this is where the name chapter room comes from, the place where the monks would gather each day to hear a chapter of their rule read with a commentary by the Abbot. Trappist houses, at least some Trappist houses, still do this practice, don't they, Bede? They meet every morning for a short for job assignments, a short reading of the rule with an explanation by the Abbot, as we do on Saturday morning, but they would do it every day. And on their way out, they would stop by the cemetery to pray for the faithful departed. Now, this is kind of a combination of different traditions going on, but not unlike what's going to develop


as a Western tradition. Now, eventually, these two observances are going to grow apart, the prayer and the work assignments. And eventually, this prayer will begin more and more to take place in chapel on their way to work, and the second will take place exclusively in the chapter room. In the medieval English tradition, this is, again, we're a little far ahead of ourselves, but I thought this was charming. You might like this. The prior, we'll have to make him listen to this tape. In the medieval English tradition, what would eventually develop with this practice is something like this. Great Prime, it was called, was announced by a grand peal of the bells for prime into choir. And then a lesser peal was rung for prime out of choir, when the deans and the canons went out in stately procession to take their places around the chapel house. Quiet. Yes. So.


Compliment. First traces of compliment are really mentioned by Saint Basil. And he just mentions the simple practice of reciting Psalm 90 before retiring to rest on nights when there wasn't a vigil office. So in Basil's tradition, the vigil office wasn't taking place every night. Eventually, though, when vigils becomes a regular observance, it gets attached to the third watch of the night. Now I always forget how to count that, but that would be like three o'clock in the morning? Third watch of the night. It became a custom when vigils became a regular observance, it became a custom to retire immediately I lost a sentence in my computer. To retire immediately after vespers. And use a short reading It became a custom to retire


to rest immediately after the short reading and examination of conscience was followed by the evening meal. So there'd be an evening meal, a short reading, examination of conscience, go right to bed because you had to be up early for vigils at the third watch of the night. So, then all would retire in procession to the dormitory, reciting Psalm 90 as they went, among other psalms. That would conclude then with a prayer and a blessing by the abbot. So you see, it really is a prayer to close the day. And also being prayed in procession, I rather like that tradition a lot. We'll see it develop further and get fixed in the Rule of St. Benedict again. But the Roman office doesn't adapt this practice all the way until the 8th century. And it's the Roman office, not Benedict, that will add the Nunc Dimitris, that famous gospel canticle, Now let your servant go in peace,


which becomes fixed as the key feature of Compton. So those are the last of our tedious little elements in leading up to the Rule of St. Benedict. And let's start getting our feet wet with that. I'll just get my papers straight here. Okay. What better way to start talking about the Rule of St. Benedict than by quoting Master Adalbert de Vauguey. So the Divine Office is mainly written about in the Rule of St. Benedict in chapters 8 through 20. De Vauguey says this,


The abrupt manner in which Benedict begins his treatment of the Divine Office has always astonished readers and commentators. One enters immediately upon dry determinations about the Orarium without any preamble to indicate the meaning of this body of rubrics. It's only toward the end of all this, in chapter 16, that Benedict thinks it well to expound the general plan of the hours and to furnish a scriptural justification for it. Sure enough, right after chapter 7, humility, comes, boom, chapter 8, The Divine Office at Night. Followed by, I'll just read the list of chapters for you. Very dry, juridical things. The number of Psalms of the Night Office, the arrangement of the Night Office in summer, celebration of vigils on Sunday, celebrations


of the solemnity of Lodz, celebration of Lodz on ordinary days, celebration of vigils on anniversaries of saints, a time for saying Alleluia! The celebration of the Divine Office during the day, the number of Psalms to be sung at these hours, the order of psalmody, the discipline of psalmody, and then finally, chapter 20, the reverence and prayer. And reverence and prayer. It's a beautiful chapter. The only other thing we get about that has something to do with it would be then in chapter 52, the Oratory of the Monastery. Some think that that got misplaced and got pushed toward the end, but there are different interpretations of that. So Benedict has the thing very well organized, very well laid out. What I thought might be interesting is to put ourselves as we did with the Egyptian monks in the setting.


What would we be like in a typical day in Benedict's time, as close as we can get. And this is some of it laid out again in this book I keep recommending by C.H. Lawrence, Medieval Monasticism. Here's how he describes it. So for the monk in Benedict's monastery, here's the difference. Remember what I just read you from Taft? I'll just read it again just to get it fresh in your mind. In the beginning, the liturgy was not a part of the monastic life. And certainly for the Egyptians, liturgical ceremony and services were just not an important thing. That's Egypt, 4th century. So here we have barely 200 years later in Italy. The first task of monastic life is prayer in common. It's a whole different approach to the office. The singing of the divine service in the oratory


is the first task of monastic life. What Benedict calls the Opus Dei, the work of God, is this liturgical singing of the divine office. Prayer in common. This prayer in common for Saint Benedict provides the basic framework of the day, and everything else is fitted around it. Benedict gives elaborate instructions for the celebration of these daily services. Why? Because they provide the basic framework of the day. One of the reasons they're of great interest to the history of Christian worship, Lawrence says, is that they are some of the earliest detailed descriptions of the divine office we have. So Benedict has fascination for a lot of reasons. And Benedict is going to influence the Western


celebration of the divine office for monks and non-monks from here on out. And Protestant celebrations of the divine office as well are going to be influenced by Saint Benedict's layout. So here's the day. So the monks' routine of worship began during the hours of darkness at 2 a.m. or shortly after in winter. It's about when you're going to bed, isn't it Daniel? Or shortly after in winter and at 3 a.m. or shortly after in summer. So 2 a.m. in winter, 3 a.m. in summer. With the singing of the office of vigils or nocturnes, later called matins. That poor office, very schizophrenic. Either called vigils or nocturnes or matins. After that office, the community did not go back to bed. There was a short interval at which the office of lauds was sung


at first light. And then the office of prime at sunrise. Then the monks prosthesed out of choir and went about their work. So again you see the distinction between first light and sunrise. At first light, lauds is sung. It's not till sunrise that prime is sung. There followed at intervals the relatively short offices of the day. Sung at the third, sixth, and ninth hours. And then the evening hour of vespers. The day ended with a brief service of compline, which was sung at sundown. The night office, vigils, nocturnes, matins, whatever you want to call it, was the longest and most elaborate of these services. Well certainly, if it's going to last from 3 a.m. almost to first light, it's a pretty long service. It was divided into parts called nocturnes.


I'd like you to remember that term. Nocturnes. Each of these nocturnes was a different, in a sense, a different watch in the night. By the way, we still use that. We still have ourselves at vigils two nocturnes. Three psalms in a reading is a nocturne. So it was divided into parts called nocturnes, each of which consisted of six psalms, four lessons, together with responsories or meditative verses that related back to the subject of the lessons. This is the tradition that's going to stay for the next thousand, fourteen hundred years. On Sundays and feast days, the night office contained three nocturnes of six psalms apiece. So that's 18. And it must have taken nearly two hours to complete.


Benedict's rule lays down elaborate instructions for the order of psalmody so to ensure that the entire psalter is recited in the course of one week. The lessons are all to be drawn from the Bible and then scripture commentaries of the Fathers. In the course of the following centuries, the office was greatly elaborated musically as well as textually, but this basic pattern, as it's outlined in the rule, persisted and came to be the standard framework of daily worship in the Western Church. Its traces are clearly visible in all the service books, Protestant as well as Catholic, that are derived from the medieval tradition. There's a little thing about the timetable here that I thought was kind of funny. The timetable varied like the tides in response to the rhythm of the seasons. Computation of time that was followed was that of the classical antiquity, which is still in use in the 6th century. By this reckoning, the periods of daylight and darkness


are each divided into 12 hours of equal length. Thus, in the winter, the night hours would be longer than 60 minutes and the day hours would be correspondingly short. Does that make sense? You follow what I'm saying? It took me a while to figure out what that meant. The night hours are one length, the day hours are another length. In the summer, the day hours would be long, longer than 60 minutes, and the night hours would be relatively short. The job of getting everybody out of bed at the correct time to the night office and ringing the bell for the canonical hours must have posed problems for the advent of the mechanical clock hadn't come until the 14th century. Before this, water clocks were widely used. I had never heard of the water clock. Some monastic customaries recommend astronomical observation as a check during the night. Clearly, somebody had to stay awake during the night to rouse the community at the proper time. In the master's rule, here's the thing I like,


the duty falls upon each tithing of the brethren in turn. They watch the clock in pairs, lest one of them fall asleep. And when the hour comes, they go to the abbot's bed and say, Lord, open thou my lips, tapping his feet gently until he wakes. Didn't you have to do that for Father Pyre last year at the Easter vigil? Is that how you did it? You tapped his feet gently? Lord, open my lips. Lord, open my lips. So there's a day to put ourselves in context, anyway, of Benedict. Technically speaking, the biggest innovations that Benedict makes are these. I have five of various importance. One is that he put variable psalms at all the hours of the day except at Compline, which he put in the form that it was going to last for centuries. So every day there would be different psalms at every office, which is not the case


in other offices. Compline stays the same, 491-34. Lauds, here's another thing that's going to last forever, has a standard form. It has five psalms that are sung every day with various things in the middle. Every day opens with 66 Psalm 50 and closes with 148-149-150. 148-149-150 come to be regarded as one psalm, the loudest psalm. We'll see in the Pre-Vatican II office in general, 148-149-150 are all sung together with one antiphon at the beginning and one at the end of all three. For lauds, psalms are going to be picked according to the proper time of the day, not a continuum, which is interesting. This is an element he's getting from the cathedral, not getting from the monastic tradition. If you have any


interest in this at all, they do present the very complex curses of Benedict's office and the rule of the master in an appendix in the RB. Second thing that Benedict did is he took out all repeating psalms. So you would never do the same psalm twice in a week. But you would do the whole psalm during the week. Three, in regards to vigils, customarily for day-in, day-out he reduced the number of the vigil psalms. And also gives us our present understanding of this office of vigils by abandoning the all-night vigil, which the master was observing, and by this time was a universal custom among monks in the East, as well as in Gaul and Italy.


Not on great feasts, but on weekdays and on Sundays. But weekly on Sundays. So Benedict fixes its structure and its duration as an office that comes at the end of the night. It's called the night office, or night vigils, but it's still to occur after a full night's sleep. Perhaps this is just another sign of Benedict's moderation. Also one notes that it's with Benedict that this Sunday vigils takes on a little different character. It specifically always anticipates the resurrection by adding this third nocturne, or the resurrection vigil, which he gets from the cathedral tradition. Now what's that? The third nocturne consists of three canticles with Alleluia as a refrain, four readings from the New Testament, four responses, a Te Deum, and a reading from the Gospel. Now, you may recognize this as being influential in the


office that we celebrate right now. You notice the second nocturne we celebrate on Sundays has canticles, not the Psalms. And, of course, the Te Deum, the reading from the Gospel. So this is a Benedictian innovation in the monastic tradition, but he's getting it from the cathedral. This always gives me a little bit of charm when I realize that we are celebrating that office very soon, as they celebrated in the 5th and 6th century. The fourth thing Benedict brings in is the use of hymnody in the office. I think I've mentioned before the Ambrosianum in St. Ambrose, one of our big heroes. Benedict specifically refers to them as Ambrosianum, referring to St. Ambrose, who is credited with writing many hymns in his lifetime, and by some considered to be the father of Western hymnody, of Christianizing this


form. It's not known where Benedict got this idea to sing hymns at the office, because it's not found anywhere else in any other monastic tradition. It's not found, there's no evidence of it in any other monastic tradition, but there's speculation it may have come from La Reine or from the land itself, Ambrose's home, or else the Iberian Peninsula. We just don't know. But it is an innovation of his. Now it's in an odd place, this hymn, and it will stay that way until Vatican II. It comes after, it comes near the end of the office, now I can't remember if it's after or before the Benedictus, but it's right around the Benedictus. Do you remember? I think it's right, I think it's after the reading response for the hymn, and then the Benedictus. Now we think of it as the entrance thing, but it was in a very odd, for us, it was in a very odd place in the office, and it stayed that way for thousands of years. The last thing


that Benedict adds in is the recitation out loud of the Our Father. This is Benedict's innovation for a very specific reason. He gives it a spin that I really like. We're going to have to end on this, I think. In the Roman office, there is evidence that it was said silently by the people at the end of Vespers. What does Benedict do? Chapter 13, 12. Again, this is a practice that's going to carry on until Vatican II office. Assuredly, the celebration of Lauds and Vespers must never pass by without the superior reciting the entire Lord's Prayer at the end for all to hear. Why? Because thorns of contention are likely to spring up. He specifically does it for the sake


of the community because of the ending of the Lord's Prayer. Thus, warned by the pledge they make to one another, thus, warned by the pledge they make to one another in the very words of this prayer, forgive us as we forgive our trespasses. May they cleanse themselves of this kind of vice. So it's specifically a monastic practice to use the Lord's Prayer to make sure they're going to get along with each other and forgive each other at the beginning of the day and at the end of the day. It's really beautiful. We had somewhat of a talk on that one. I have to remember when that was. They still do it like this? Up until Vatican II, it was still done this way. At other celebrations, this is a celebration of Lauds on ordinary days, at other celebrations, only the final part of the Lord's Prayer is said above, that all may reply but deliver us unto evil. So, what derives from this is the custom of sotto voce,


murmuring the Lord's Prayer, until the abbot at the end of it says, forgive us our sins as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, up to there. And all the monks add, but deliver us from every evil. And that's a very interesting thing. It's murmured the whole way, just that last part is brought up, and then the monks would answer. So they themselves make that pledge to follow along and to be protected against the thorns of contention, which were likely to spring up between the monks. I think that's a good place to break on that. Any questions about that that I might be able to answer? I notice that you're getting more and more complex, more and more little details about things. Okay. Glory be to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,


as it was and is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen. God of truth, Father of all, you send your Spirit, as you promised, to bring together in love all whom evil has driven apart. Strengthen us to work for your blessings of unity and peace in the world. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen. Good. So today, second half of talking about the RB, which we began last class, I think it was three weeks ago now. So if you recall, I mainly mentioned


a few of the innovations that Benedict brought in. They don't seem so striking at first glance. In one sense, you could say he just took the old Roman office and added some things to the RM. But the main things he did add is, for a practical standpoint, that he took out variable psalms. He put variable psalms at all the hours of the day, except for compos, so he never had the same psalms every day. And that he took out any repeating psalms and laid it out so much so that the whole psalter could be read in the course of the week. Now this will become a value of monks to come. This value of having said the whole psalter per week. Now it looks like a kind of a heady obligation to be able to say that many, but remember there were traditions of monks who were saying the entire psalter every day. So it didn't seem like much. It seemed kind of a modest


comparison. Also, Benedict reworked vigils and gave it its distinctive style. Set number of psalms and gave Sunday vigils its distinctive resurrection theme. Ended this thing of all-night vigils and had it at the end of a night's sleep. In some places it had been just an all-night vigil. He also did this funny little thing introducing hymns into the hours, and we find them, for us, it's kind of an odd place. It was after all the psalms were done before the canicles when you were called Ambrosiano, the hymns of St. Ambrose. And then he also added this recitation out loud of the Lord's Prayer with a very specific reconciliation bent to it. We talked about the practice of it, how the abbot himself would recite it and the monks only coming in at the very end to remind them to forgive each other. I'd like to talk about some things that may seem a little technical


at the beginning, but again we talked about what their life was like. So, I thought we might spend a little time trying to imagine how they might have performed this office, how they might have actually done it themselves. And it all centers around what St. Benedict means by the word that Father Matthew teases me about all the time, antiphon. We're not exactly sure what they meant by the word antiphon. Antiphon. Say it. Antiphon. Antiphon. Antiphony. There are many different uses of the word, even listed in the Rule of St. Benedict. Now, you know what we mean by the antiphon. We mean something that the word means. Antiphonus. Would that be the right words? Before the sound. That would be what we would say before we say the rest of the prayer, or we would sing before the rest of the prayer. That's technically an antiphon in our terms.


But for them, it could mean these different things. It could mean a responsorial, as we do responsorial psalms at Mass. Some scholars speculate antiphon meant alternating choirs. I don't know where they get that. Some think antiphon meant a whole psalm. Some people think antiphon meant a set of three psalms. It's all those different interpretations of what Benedict meant for that in the performance. Probably, this is the argument that convinces me the most, anyway, is that antiphon refers to a psalm with a refrain. How did they do that refrain? It's still up for grabs. It's been argued to no conclusion by people who have a lot of time on their hands to argue about such things like that. But it also centers around what the different verbs that Benedict uses to describe the performance of the psalms. At least four times, he uses the word cantare


to sing the psalms. One time, he uses this beautiful verb, which I don't know if it's anywhere else, salere, p-s-a-l-e-r-e, to psalm. They psalm. They psalm the readings. That's beautiful. Psalmodize. I suppose we would get the word from that. Twice, he uses the word dicere. I'm saying it in Italian, but in Latin, dicere, dicere, to say. But, what do you make of this? Chapter 11, 3, in one translation anyway, the Gloria is said by the one singing. So, I don't quite know what's going on there. So, he goes back and forth, Benedict, between using the words sung and said. The one scholar, Butler, points out, as I've pointed out before, Benedict didn't necessarily make fast distinctions between these two things, between singing and saying, and putting ourselves again in that mindset.


Maybe even for Benedict, there were no rigid rules about whether things should be sung or should be said. And we don't really know what the chanting was like at that time. There's some evidence of this thing I think I've brought up before called the Old Roman Chant that existed pre-Gregorian, and some of it is still in the Gregorian repertoire. It was a very simple, almost a recto tono style chant. You know what recto tono is? Singing always on the same note, not moving up or down, no melody really to it. But, let's also remember that ancient languages, Latin as well as Greek, and even Syriac, didn't always distinguish between these different kinds of vocalizing, reciting as opposed to chanting. Remember to call you again to that close connection I'm always talking about, the close connection between the recited word and the beginnings of music. That thin line between singing and speaking. When does recitation


become singing? For example, what we do at Vigils in speaking together in measured cadences is, in technical sense, it's music already because it's measured sound. It's organized sound in the broader sense of the word. There are also such things as speech choirs. Have you ever heard those performed? I was part of a speech choir and it was fabulous. We all recited together the Carl Sandburg poem. We are the people, the mob, the crowd, the mass. Do you know that song? That poem? And we had different ways of reciting it together and different people would take different parts. But it was speech, but you could not distinguish that from music in the sense of it was ordered and registered. So we think of it in terms in that way. The earliest monastic tradition, not unlike the old curmudgeon Saint Jerome and many other early Christians, were opposed to music. But even that didn't mean they were opposed to chanting.


They had strictures about using music but they didn't necessarily oppose chanting, whatever that meant. They were opposed to so-called worldly music. They didn't like musical instruments, especially in any of the Christian liturgies. Initially, they were also opposed to non-scriptural texts. Mainly, one would speculate because it had these connections with pagan theater rites, instruments, and music, and a lot of the hymns. That will slowly break down. Of course, they were a little stiffer than the psalmist him or herself was, with psaltery and harp and drums and dancing and bugles and pipes. And of course, as I mentioned, it's Ambrose who wrote some of the first non-scriptural texts to be accepted in liturgical music, so it's interesting that Benedict uses the Ambrosian. Anyway, at least according to our friend Robert Taft here,


he says, quote, We can take it as certain that Benedict and those before him did not intend the hours to be spoken, though we know nothing of the nature of the chant in this early period. Of course, this is pre-Gregorian, so if you're imagining them singing the long Melismatic Gregorian refrains, get that out of your head. Maybe something like a simple recto tono. Adalbert de Vaugoy writes that the manner of performing psalmody that's used almost exclusively today, that of alternating two sides of the choir, or in our case alternating cantor-cantors in choir, was not common in Benedict's time. This is a practice that developed later. He says that probably the psalms were recited by soloists, with the assembly participating in the form of some kind of response,


or anaphon, as I said. Now this would be a little closer, then, to this Egyptian tradition where the word is being proclaimed and there's a response. Could be taking the form of a refrain after verses, you know, like our Psalm 66. Let the peoples praise you, O God, let all the peoples praise you. The cantor sings the verses in between, so there's still participation. Or it could be just an anaphon that was sung at the very beginning of the psalm and then a soloist would do the rest of the psalm at the end. Remember, we have two problems here. We're pretty spoiled in the fact that we can pick up a book or Xerox copies or da-da-da-da. The two problems here are, one, literacy. Not every monk being able to read. He didn't have any education to be a monk. So, the second


problem being then the scarcity of printed copies or manuscripts of the Scripture or the Psalter. You see these beautiful illuminated manuscripts of the monks gathering around one psalter, four or five monks singing together. They're not going to be able to replace their psalters even as easily as we are, though it's taking us a long time too. Add into this, again, just to get a sort of picture of the relation of the monk to his prayer and the monk to the text. Add into this the fact that the time allotted to Lectio Divina for the monk is also considered to be a time to commit individual Scripture passages to memory. So, this is as much a practical thing as anything. We don't have to keep dragging out the books. We don't have to have too many books if you've got the psalms memorized. One soloist could stand up and sing the psalm by memory, chant the psalm by memory. This does, though, imply a whole different relation


to the text. What I was thinking of, there was... I wish I could remember the name of the movie. There's some movie where some evil despotic government stole all the books. Is that the one? And you see these pictures of people walking around. So what they're doing is they've memorized these books. Isn't that it? Each one person has to memorize a book. So they walk around, they remember reciting the book over and over and over again so it never gets lost. I kind of have this idea in my head of the monks doing their Lectio and memorizing these psalms, you know, every monk being in charge of the psalm. So, whether it's Psalm 66, would this be your day? Now, of course, that's all speculation in my part, but I kind of like the image of it, and especially this idea of this kind of relation to the text. Benedict does say that they are not to use antiphons if the community is small, in verse 17.


I'm sorry, in chapter 17, and also in chapter 12, he refers to performing the psalms in directum. So, probably if the community is small, they would just recite the whole psalm together in some way. So, anyway, these may be picky, picky little points, but for me, it's interesting to try to put ourselves there and see what their relation to the execution of these psalms was. For all of Benedict's legislating of the office, and you see quite a few minor details legislated, he does not specify the pericopes for the scripture lessons. He doesn't tell us what scripture lessons are to be there. So, we could presume, as, again, our friend Taft does, that they were Alexio Continual, books chosen according to the season of the liturgical year, much as we do here and now. Later on, when the


office gets solidified in the certainly by Tridentine times, you will have the Alexio Brevis. You'll be told exactly what we need to do at all hours, at all days, 365 days a year. But Benedict does not do that. That's an addition later by the church. There's another interesting aspect to the office in the RB that I want to spend actually a little bit of time on here. This gets a little more somewhere in between the practice and the whole understanding of prayer in Benedict's time. And that's in relation to the psalm prayers. This should have some resonance with things we've talked about in some of the past few classes, especially the Egyptian monks. The RB 20, 4 and 5, reads Here's


verse 4 and 5 of the chapter on reverence in prayer. Prayer should therefore be short and pure, unless it is prolonged under the inspiration of divine grace. In community, however, prayer should always be brief. And when the superior gives the signal, all should rise together. What most of our scholars here are assuming Benedict's talking about is what's called the psalm prayers. It doesn't seem to be referring to the whole office. Or it doesn't seem to be referring just to improvised prayers on one's own. Now to understand what's going on here, let's realize we're not that many hundred years from the desert tradition, the Egyptian tradition which Benedict is inheriting. And we know that Benedict knows a lot about it. Especially the desert monastic tradition.


Athanasius, Cassius, and Nigeria, if you'll recall, for example, all make reference to a prayer that follows the psalm. Remember in Pecomius' tradition, for example, each psalm is read by the soloist standing, and then after each psalm there was time for private prayer with the arms extended, then a prostration, and then a prayer proclaimed, a calact, or a prayer. So, Benedict appears to be in this tradition. Perhaps not with the standing and the prostration. We just don't know. But there is a signal, he does say, when the superior gives the signal, all should rise together. But there's no indication that they did the prostration, the arms extended. The rule of the master does keep that. Just before Benedict, he does keep the prostration. But, there's some kind of a vocal prayer offered


by one for the all. One of the other reasons I like to explore this a bit is because it has some relation also to our understanding of the calact at the Eucharist. So, this is called a calact, and the word even works for me in English as the word collect. The prayer offered by one for all. And there are two parts to it. Here, as the same as our practice at Eucharist, is brief period of silent personal prayer following the psalm, and then a calact, an oration or prayer that's read by the presiding minister. What's the purpose of these calacts? Well, at Eucharist, the presider says, let us pray, and then there's a call for a pause. What's that pause for? For everyone to find their individual prayer. For everyone to gather their own intercessions, their own focus.


And then the presiding minister collects them together and articulates the one prayer of the community. Well, the same thing is going on here. So, the calacts are a way for the community to appropriate, though specifically with the psalms, the meaning of the psalm in the light of Jesus' life, ministry, and mission. To appropriate the meaning of the psalm in the light of the paschal mystery, in the light of the church, in the light of their own lives as monks. So, just specifically referring to the psalms, not all, as we heard from our classes from Sister Irene, not all psalms are self-evidently Christian, as you might have seen. So the psalm prayer, or the calact, will start to Christianize the psalm, put a Christian spin on it, if you will. What happened


in and around, somewhere between the 5th and the 7th century, these prayers that were written specifically to go with certain psalms began to be themselves collected as they began developing significantly. You can imagine monks saying, what kind of prayer do you use for Psalm 70? Well, these collections of psalm prayers, or psalm calacts, were written down and circulated around a number of different churches and among the different monasteries. And this is not unlike the origins of the sacramentary. Now, whether or not these specific collections of psalter calacts were known in monastic circles in the early days is debated. Cassian, John Cassian, seems to be familiar with them, but St. Benedict makes no direct reference to their collections. Though he knew John Cassian, so he may have


had his hands on these as well. But, he's saying prayer should be short, unless inspired by the Holy Spirit. So, it seems to be that he didn't know of these written down ones, and somebody was making them up on the spot, some kind of a spontaneous prayer. They hear this psalm, there's a period of silence, and then somebody offers a prayer, relating back to that psalm, giving it, in the light of Christian ecclesial meaning. Benedict may not, some people say that Benedict may not, after all, have used any vocal psalm prayers, but all scholars agree that there was a time for personal prayer after each psalm, because they were an intrinsic part of the monastic tradition. We don't know, as I said, the monks may have stood with their arms extended in nation practice, but Benedict doesn't bring it up, or they may have done a full prostration, but he doesn't bring it up. The deeper point, though, is this understanding of the psalm itself,


which I've mentioned before, and I want to talk about again. We have a tendency to see the psalms as prayers themselves, back to that. But the ancients had still this subtle distinction. There are those who speculate that at some period between the time of the Desert Fathers and Benedict, the whole understanding of the character of psalmody is already beginning to change, perhaps because of the influence of the urban monastic tradition and the urban cathedral tradition on monastic prayer. So, as I've said before, for the age of the earliest monks, the psalms as any piece of scripture were themselves an invitation to prayer. They were the word of God being addressed to human beings. And this is given expression, especially when we have the practice of the solo recitation of the psalms while all are listening in silence,


that the real praying comes after the psalm, in the silence of the heart, as a response to having heard the word of God proclaimed. I loved what Sister Irene said when she was here, too. Listen to your brothers proclaiming the word of God. So even as we're chanting back and forth, what I'm hearing on your lips is you proclaiming the word of God. We're proclaiming it all together. And then, in this tradition, the real prayer comes afterwards. So the oldest monastic tradition, the psalm is not regarded as the human homage rendered to God, so much as God's message to humanity. The cathedral tradition, no. The psalm itself is considered the inspired word of God, after all. It's the spirit songs on our lips. So like other parts of scripture, the psalms were readings that invited and encouraged prayer of the heart, a very contemplative stance. Now,


after the RB, when the office tends to get legislated, when the office tends to be the same for everyone, this is going to slowly disappear, even in the monastic offices. And the psalmody itself becomes a prayer rather than a prelude for it. In this understanding, this altar contains not only the inspired word of God to us, but also the inspired prayers of us to God. And that's an equally valid way of approaching the psalms, but it's different. There's a quote here from Holtz here. Have you ever seen this version of St. Beg's? It's interesting. What does he say? In the psalms, then, the person at prayer identifies themselves with the psalmist, who is regularly called the prophet. So, whoever sings the psalms speaks prophetically, and the one praying


makes their own the praise and thanks, the trusting plea, the rejoicing, or bitter complaint and distress of the psalmist. So, there you see the psalm as being regarded as a prayer itself. Later on, what's going to happen, though, is that the psalms themselves, when they start to become seen as prayers, there's going to be no longer a need for this response of silent prayer after them. It's going to gradually disappear and just go right into these psalm prayers, because they still somehow need to be appropriated as Christian and as Ecclesial. But, before we get away from this ancient tradition, because we've recovered it now, let's remember that most ancient of ways. Basically, what I like about it, I like to think of it as being three movements to it. One, the psalm, or the reading, awakens. Two, a personal response, even in community, awakens


an interior prayer of the heart that gets gathered up into the words of three, a public prayer, an ekkalic, or the psalm prayer, which are the important way for the prayer to appropriate the deeper meaning of the psalms. What I brought along here, and I wanted to show you, I did some, I keep watching for these in the Roman office, how this tradition has stayed with us, of these kallaks pointing back to the psalm. We don't use the psalm prayer here. I don't know how many monasteries do, actually. Did you use it in Atchison? Did you have psalm prayers? I think that most monasteries don't. But that tradition would wind up becoming part of the Roman office, this idea of the psalm prayer, the kallak being at the end of the psalm. And I have no proof of this,


but I'm assuming that many of these prayers that are still in the Roman office come from ancient days. But I thought I'd show you a couple of them. For example, here's Psalm 35. Psalm 35, O Lord, plead my cause against my foes. Fight those who fight me. Take up your buckler and shield. Now that I am in trouble, they gather, they gather and mock me. They take me by surprise and strike me and tear me to pieces. How long will you look on and save my life from these raging bulls, my soul from these lions? The psalm prayer. Lord, you rescue the poor from their oppressors. And you rise to the aid as you rose to the aid of your beloved son against those who unjustly sought his life. So, the prayer is making sense of that psalm in the light of Jesus. Look on your church as we journey to you. And then taking that same psalm


and making it apply in an ecclesial way. So it's personal, it's ecclesial. And that the poor and the weak may recognize the help you provide and proclaim your saving acts. Here's another one. Psalm 131. Lord, my heart is not proud nor hot in my eyes. I have not gone after things too great nor marvels beyond me. The prayer is addressed directly to Jesus on this one. So that we know how this Psalm 131 then, what it has to do with us and what it has to do with Jesus. Lord Jesus, gentle and humble of heart, you declared that whoever receives a little child in your name receives you. And you promised your kingdom to those who are like children. So, we have that psalm, we have that understanding in the light of Jesus and in the light of ourselves as followers of Jesus. Never let pride reign in our hearts, but may the Father's compassion reward and embrace


all who willingly bear your gentle yoke. What would be, I've thought of doing this, and of course it's one of my 27 projects that I'll never get to, is I would love to see these all laid out in order and then see how the church takes each of these psalm prayers and points back to the psalm. And then when we're reading the psalms it would give us some kind of understanding of even how we can appropriate the psalms as we're singing and praying them ourselves. Here's one more I picked for you. We could go on and on with this, but I'll try not to. Um, this one I really like. It shows, so we have Psalm 77 recalling God's work. Um, you know it. I cry aloud to God, I cry aloud to God that he may hear me in the day of distress. I sought the Lord. My hands were raised at night without ceasing. You guided your people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron. The psalm prayer points back. Father, you established your ancient covenant by signs and


wonders. So we're pointing back to the original covenant from which this psalm comes. But more wondrously you confirmed the new one through the sacrifice of your son. So tying the old and the new and how that psalm applies to us as Christians and to Jesus. Three, guide your church, then it says, through the pathways of life that we may be led to the land of promise and celebrate your name with lasting praise. These are wonderful in that way. I have to tell you, I'm appreciating them more after studying this than I did originally. But that idea of tying, taking this psalm, which doesn't seem necessarily be in our context, seeing it in the light of Jesus because it was probably the prayer on Jesus' lips also, seeing it in the light of the church and seeing it in the light of me, individual. How it applies straight through. Did you want to say something? Are they after every psalm? No, generally, like morning prayer, they'll be after


series. Yeah, not always a series. So, morning prayer, there's one after 77, there isn't one after the canonical, and there's one after psalm 97. I think they come after the psalms and not after the canonical. And if the psalm is broken off, then I just say it. 62 psalm, 67 psalm, canonical, no. Except those. The other thing, too, is that I think you've tried to be responsible for the doctrine. Wait, wait, wait, next point. Next point. Page 3. And here's the connection with our Psalter. I can't take credit for it, though. I can't take credit for it. And I meant to bring one in. Could you just go grab a psalter for me? One of the office books, Francis. I'll hold the tape. Is that good? Would they be


the psalterers or would they do both? I don't know. So, they're starting to become collected in collections between the 5th and the 7th century. By the time the office gets solidified in the Council of Trent, they're permanent. And those who use the Roman office, they're permanent, too. The same ones over and over again. So, I had this great moment this weekend of getting Dr. Ford and Thomas Mattis together, which meant more to me than you might have known because, of course, Thomas almost single-handedly put the Italian office together and then passed that job on to me to do it in English. And I based it, you know, almost completely on his work. I hadn't realized just how much of it Thomas had done. I mean, he claims credit for 90% of what was done in Italy. And I remember


before I had ever visited here, I was at dinner at Ford's house once. He was my professor down there. And he was saying, yes, but you should see what the commodities do with their psalms. And he brought out one of the old, old office books from here. And they were some of the first ones that Thomas had done. And they had these beautiful doxologies that pointed back to the psalm. I remember us marveling over this at dinner one night. And then, lo, would I know that four years later it would be my job to finish that same project? But, maybe you haven't even noticed it, but I hope you have. What Thomas has done, and I asked him, he said this was all his idea, Fr. Thomas Manus, to do this. And he says maybe somebody else did it in another monastery somewhere before. But it was completely his idea to do it. What he has done is write a doxology at the end of every psalm that points back to the psalm and Christianizes it in some way. Now, normally, for example, when we read the Roman office,


you end with glory to the Father, and to the Son, and the Holy Spirit, that was in the beginning, is now in the original world. Amen. At the end of every psalm, it's the same one. The Genoa, the Grail psalms are laid out, they have three different doxologies that can be used at the end of them. And, you know, in the morning, in vigils we say praise the Father, the Word, and the Spirit, the three who are one in heaven, after every psalm. But, as Thomas laid out, as the commandant of these offices laid out in Italy, every psalm, every canticle has a doxology written specifically for it. And they're just, they're so wonderful. My favorite one is from the, is it Easter Vigils? Your rage, O Lord, is against our sin, your wrath against the dying of the light. So, taking that rage and wrath and turning it, and even making sense out of that. I also particularly like the two for for Psalm 33. I will bless the Lord at all times, God's praise always on my lips. He writes,


we have seen the true light, received the heavenly Spirit, we found the true faith, we worship the Trinity who has saved us. And at the end of the second part of Psalm 33, we believe, Lord, that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Remember us, O Holy One, when you come into your kingdom. The other ones I love are from Psalm 116. Somebody remember, when we do 116. Oh gosh, I wish somebody remembered. It's Thursday, isn't it? Sorry, I meant to have this set up for us. Thursday, also. Beautiful ones. These are the first ones I saw. Behold, my heart overflows with noble words. To the King I must speak the songs I have made. My tongue is nimble as the pen of a scribe. Praise to you, Jesus Christ, King of justice, the fairest of the children on earth, anointed with the Holy Spirit.


So pointing back to that anointed one is Jesus. The second part of the Psalm, which of course when we use these Psalms, we use the first part to refer to Jesus, the second part often to refer to Mary, the second part of Psalm 45. Listen, O daughter, give ear to my words. Forget your people and your father's house, which is a response to a Psalm I think for the Feast of the Assumption. Anyway, the Psalter points back to Jesus, but this time Jesus through Mary. To Jesus Christ, Son of Mary, to the Father of all the living, we sing in the Holy Spirit, glory to God on high. Now, what's going on here is basically the same thing that we've been talking about. Here they are. These are these beautiful ones for 1.16, which is 1.14, 1.15. I always know this Psalm from Holy Week. This is used for many of the intervening chants for Holy Week,


Palm Sunday and Holy Thursday especially. I love the Lord, for the Lord has heard the cry of my appeal. The Lord was attentive to me the day I called. The doxology. O come, let us sing the Father's glory, for he freed his Son from the tomb. The God of compassion and mercy has sent us the Holy Spirit for the second half. He was right there with me on this one. This one, just about, I lost it when I read this the first time, because this is the Psalm that's used for Holy Thursday. And he, sure enough, Thomas gets it, when Christ lifted up the cup of salvation and called on the name of the Father, he was heard because of his reverence and became for us the source of salvation. If you recall, this responsorial Psalm on Holy Thursday is our blessing cup is a communion in the blood of Christ. How can I repay the Lord for his goodness to me, the cup of salvation I will raise. These are just fabulous. Just fabulous. So, they work in the same way as, yes? I could not give you the exact years.


I think he began working on the project in the late 60s and early 70s. It's a guess, though. I think he got to Italy in 67 or so. So, what these things are doing is the same thing that these Psalter colleagues meant to do. They are not always prayers. They're not always addressed to God. They're not always addressed to Christ. Often, they're in the same voice that the Psalm is. But, in many of the traditions now, of course, we are, I think many monastic houses are trying to bring back this long pause of silence after each Psalm. So, once it's all there, we are ready to get the Christian message even before we take that little moment for individual meditation on it. I wanted to quote something from Adelbert here. Let me see if it's really necessary. Yes. Yeah, here we go.


So, Adelbert de Beauguay says, We must... It's too little to recognize in the prayer meaning that moment of silence. It's too little to recognize it just as the strong beat in the spiritual summit of the office. We must go further and understand that that alone is the prayer of the office in the proper sense. Saying Psalms is not itself praying. Admittedly, many of the Psalms are prayers but a great number stem from different genres. Eulogies of those who fear the Lord, meditations on the destiny of the just and the wicked, epic rehearsals of the Exodus and the conquest, instructions in wedding songs addressed to the king, messianic oracles. But none of all that is prayer in the proper sense. Even the Psalms of praise are ordinarily presented as appeals thrown out to us not as discourses addressed to God. It's remarkable that the monastic office pays no heed to the different genres.


But, it is this prayer at the end of the Psalm that we say is the proper prayer. It's going on during that time. What's the proper role of psalmody in the office? It prepares for prayer. It invites one to pray. We're making a nibbling little point here but I hope you see where I'm getting at with this. The Psalms, as we remark, usually occur without selection. The Psalter is chiefly the word of God. Here's this quote from Caesarius. Saying the Psalms is like sowing in the field. Prayer is like burying seed and covering it by plowing a second time. So even Caesarius has this notion of you sow the field, cultivate the field, first of all, by the psalm, but then you carry on. It's orare and arare, praying and plowing. There's a little plan of words we can't get in English. Almost finished.


This will be our last time talking about Benedict, but we did give him two classes because he's such a monstrous presence in our tradition, but really for the whole West. In one sense, as I said before, the Office of Benedict is no more than a revision of the old Roman cursus, with an addition of a few elements from the Rule of the Master. But here's what's really important about Benedict. Especially when the RB starts getting imposed on monasteries throughout the European Empire. Monasticism begins to receive a specifically liturgical orientation from the importance that's given to it by Benedict. So Western monasticism is going to receive its specifically liturgical orientation from Benedict. The urban monks that served cathedrals and basilicas had become clericalized. And we'll


speak about this more next class. And the office is seen as a service to the community at large. But in Benedict, the office still has this purely domestic character, without any reference to ecclesial responsibility. Now some see in the Rule of St. Benedict a tendency to make separation between the opus Dei and other activities of the monastery. And some see this as a dangerous tendency, but let's just see it. This is just there. This is what's going on. I've been waiting for weeks to bring in finally this article by Aquanata. It's time for Aquanata. On the oratory of the monastery. In the early days of monasticism, as we talked about, the oratory serves as a place not only for prayer, but it's also a place to keep equipment for work. And during the Liturgy of the Hours, the monks are weaving ropes and mats.


Perhaps just as a prayer aid to keep the monks from dozing off. But there's also this idea that prayer is not removed from the work. And they would be praying the Psalms in their cells while they're weaving mats as well. But Benedict has a very strict line on that in his chapter 50. 2. When he says, The oratory should be in fact what it is called and nothing else should be done or stored there. So Benedict is establishing very firmly that you don't work during the office. That there's a separate place from the rest of the monastery that's for prayer. He's going to say that all the things of the monastery should be treated as the sacred vessels of the altar. So it's not to say nothing else is sacred, nothing else is holy. But there is this idea of a separate time and a separate space, a sacred space for praying that's not involved in the rest of the day. Do you see the little point of difference there? As a great realist,


Sister Aquinata says, he separates the opus Dei and manual labor both as to time and to place just as he creates separate hours for Lectio Divina. By this means, this is a positive spin on it, he gives each element its own space and value. And so she says he achieves a synthesis in a deeper sense. Others see in this a danger though, that the prayer is being removed as it's the holy thing that the monks do and nothing else is holy. But certainly what's happening with Benedict is you're starting to see that he uses this word pensum or the do, the do measure, what a monk is supposed to do. It's in Rhys here, 248. In the Rule of Saint Benedict, the office is beginning to be spoken of as a pensum or do measure of a monk's service which he is to say by himself


as well as he can if he's unable to be present in choir at the proper time. In the centuries which followed, there is going to develop an increasing distinction between the opus Dei and other monastic occupations. And thus it came about that the hours of the office were no longer organically related in people's minds to the natural divisions of the day. They became, by the age of rubrics, which followed the Council of Trent, it had become an obligation sub gravi to recite a fixed quantity of texts with legal exactitude, a performance to which was attributed a kind of efficaciousness, almost ex opere operato, just by having recited those psalms you have fulfilled your obligation. Now, this concept is bound up with an ecclesiology that's very juridical in character and which was shared by monks as well as everyone else. Especially since there's also priests. Monks are in fact then deputed by the church


to give praise to God officially in its name. But, that's a later development. This mandate is not clearly distinguished from the original commitment of the office of the monk, which we hope is still there in Benedict's time. Which arises in virtue of their monastic profession. To make formal praise in the name of the church the essential element of monastic life is to confuse the role of the monk in the canon. For the monk, we're seeing already creeping into Benedict this idea of a pensum, it's your due, it's your measure, it's something you have to do. But there's still this character about it of a domestic prayer. Not as my obligation under the weight of sin to pray for the church, but we because we are a community pray together. It's part of our life. You see the subtle difference? It's already creeping in in Benedict that maybe because of all the Augustinian canons around, you know. Sister Aquinata also mentions Augustine here. And instead of the hours marking an intensification


in the effort toward unceasing prayer, the Opus Dei in the Rule of St. Benedict is already taking on the character of a prayer that's performed at certain times, proper times, for the purpose of sanctifying the hours and divisions of the night. But not necessarily as just this intensification of unceasing prayer. We've lost some of that. Ultimately, the office of the Rule of St. Benedict is not going to immediately succeed in supplanting all the other Roman usages. But, beginning with the Carolingian Reform, and we'll talk a little bit about this, and by the 11th century, for sure, Benedict's office is going to supplant all of the monastic office and become the single monastic office of the Western Church until the Second Vatican Council. Of course, eventually it's going to wed itself to Gregorian chant. And this is going to go hand-in-hand with the imposing of the Rule of St. Benedict and monasteries throughout


the West. What's funny about this, and we don't want to beat too hard on Benedict himself, is there's a certain irony in the fact that Benedict says in Chapter 18, we urge above all that if by chance this distribution of the Psalms should displease anyone, let him arrange it otherwise if he judges better.