Celebrating Feasts for the First Time

6 May 2009

As anyone who’s ever used a breviary knows, it takes a while to get the hang of. A whole year even.

My current breviary, A Monastic Breviary (available here; sorry, it doesn’t have its own webpage), has an ordinary for Eastertide, which I had not noticed until this Easter, so last Easter I was praying it Ordinary Time-style with Alleluias thrown in for the Psalm antiphons.  So it’s taken me a whole year, really, to realize that this breviary has seasonal ordinaries, probably because I don’t (or at least haven’t) used A Monastic Breviary for Lent or Advent, seasons when the Ordinary is particularly important.

Anyway, in addition to praying this breviary properly in terms of Eastertide, this week includes several feasts I’ve never had occasion to celebrate before.  Monday was St. Monnica’s (sic), yesterday was the Conversion of St. Augustine, and today is the Finding (aka the “Invention”) of the Holy Cross, also known as the Feast of the Holy Cross in Eastertide.   This last one was supposed to be on May 3, but May 3 being Sunday I transferred it to the first free day, today.

These latter two feasts are rare, at least nowadays, but are present in this breviary because the Order of the Holy Cross has a special devotion to the Holy Cross (unsurprisingly) and St. Augustine, since their chapel is dedicated to him, if I remember correctly.

I’m observing these feasts for the first time, and I really like them, especially today’s.  Fr. Hunwicke celebrated the feast yesterday and has mentioned this feast a few times lately, so look to his ‘blog for a little more information on it.  (A word to my more liberal readers: Fr. Hunwicke is a decidedly traditionalist and conservative Anglo-Catholic, so some of the things on his ‘blog might not sit well with some of you, as they don’t with me. Fair warning.)

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