LoTH during the Easter season?

Today I prayed the “Friday of the sixth week of Easter” & not the optional memorial of St Rita of Cascia. I figured during other years May 22nd would fall outside of Easter & I would celebrate her memorial then.

Is that “right”?

Monday is the optional memorial of St Mary Magdalene de Pazzi. would I celebrate her Memorial or does Monday of the 7th week of Easter take precedence?

I know as a lay person I can do whatever, but I’m just trying to understand the magnitude of a particular day in the Easter season.

An optional memorial is just that - optional. Celebrate it; don’t celebrate it; the choice is entirely yours. As far as precedence goes, if you’re sung the print version (as opposed to an app) you’ll find a table in the front of the book.

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The General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours includes:

"b The Choice of an Office

244 On ferial days which admit the celebration of an optional memoria the Office of a particular saint, who is included for that day in the Roman Martyrology or in its approved
Appendix may, for a good reason, be celebrated in the normal way (cf nn 234–239).

245 Except on solemnities, Sundays of Advent, Lent and Eastertide, Ash Wednesday, during
Holy Week and during the octave of Easter, and on 2 November, a votive Office may be
celebrated either in whole or in part for a public or devotional reason: for example, at the
time of a pilgrimage, on a local feast, or during the external solemnity of a saint."

So there is a lot of flexibility permitted, beyond using the Optional Memorial, so it tends to encourage the variation.

On the other hand, The General Instructon of the Roman Missal has in n. 357, under the headings “The Choice of Mass Texts” and “The Readings”:

“For Memorials of Saints, unless proper readings are given, the readings assigned for the weekday are normally used. In certain cases, particularized readings are provided, that is to say, readings which highlight some particular aspect of the spiritual life or activity of the Saint. The use of such readings is not to be insisted upon, unless a pastoral reason truly suggests it.”

[Excerpt from the English translation of The Roman Missal © 2010, International Commission on English in the Liturgy Corporation. All rights reserved. Excerpt from General Introduction on the Liturgy of the Hours English translation © 1974, the Hierarchies of Australia, England and Wales, Ireland. All Rights Reserved.]

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Thank you both for your response

I think this is what I’m trying to clarify. We are currently in the Eastertide, correct? So a Wednesday in the Eastertide is elevated higher than a Wednesday in ordinary time. In ordinary time the feasts, solemnaties, memorials, etc… would take precedence.

But the Sixth Friday of Easter ranks higher than the Memorial of St Rita is Cascia. The 7th Monday of Easter ranks higher than the Memorial of St Mary Magdalene de Pazzi, which ranks higher than the 7th Monday of Ordinary time.

Is this correct?

Now this part… if I want to commemorate a first Friday for reparations to the sacred heart of Jesus, I can. It is allowed as a devotional reason, not as a matter of rank?

Optional memorials may be celebrated on the weekdays of the Easter season from Monday in the second week of Easter. In the first week of Easter, the Easter Octave, they cannot be celebrated because every day of that week is a solemnity.

Obviously, they can only be celebrated if the day would otherwise be a feria. Solemnities and feasts take precedence. Of course, the clash would only occur with a movable feast like the Ascension.

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The General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours has:

"239. During privileged seasons, if it is desired to celebrate the office of a saint on a day assigned to his or her memorial:
"a. in the office of readings, after the patristic reading (with its responsory) from the Proper of Seasons, a proper reading about the saint (with its responsory) may follow, with the concluding prayer of the saint;
“b. at morning prayer and evening prayer, the ending of the concluding prayer may be omitted and the saint’s antiphon (from the proper or common) and prayer may be added.”

Here I think it is referring to Optional Memorials and not Memorials. They are treated differently, as indicated by this part of the General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours:
“234. In the arrangement of the office there is no difference between obligatory and optional memorials, except in the case of optional memorials falling during privileged seasons.”

What is meant by “privileged seasons” in 239? I think anything that is not Ordinary Time, since there is a description of how Memorial are to be celebrated during Ordinary Time, beginning at n. 235.

So, for example, on 22 May 2020 the Optional Memorial of Saint Rita of Cascia may be celebrated in Morning Prayer, but only in the special way described in n. 239 b: “the ending of the concluding prayer may be omitted and the saint’s antiphon (from the proper or common) and prayer may be added.”

"Lord, hear our prayer: send out on all mankind the Spirit who makes us your sons, as foretold by Christ, the witness of your truth:
and so bring to completion through the gospel, the sanctification promised by your Word.

Whoever does the will of my Father, says the Lord, is my brother, and sister, and mother. Alleluia.

God our Father, you called Saint Rita of Cascia to seek your kingdom in this world by striving to live in perfect charity.
With her prayers to give us courage, help us to move forward with joyful hearts in the way of love.
We ask this though our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever."

I have copied these texts from the Universalis App. It does not present them as I have shown.

For further research Fr McNamara’s article from Zenit may be helpful at https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/library/commemorating-saints-in-lent-4516 and the UK General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours which has different translations than the ones I have put in this post https://www.liturgyoffice.org.uk/Resources/Rites/GILH.pdf .

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No, you’re reading into the instructions something that isn’t there. The only mention of Eastertide in the quoted part of the instruction (that we’re focusing on here) deals with Sundays and only Sundays.

An optional memorial remains optional - no higher or lower rank than a “regular” Easter weekday. The same is true in Ordinary Time.

The difference you’re conflating a bit is that proper feasts and solemnities and obligatory memorials outrank the weekday, again, regardless of Easter time or O.T. with perhaps some variations.

I find this chart helpful:

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You can celebrate an optional memorial on any weekday of Easter season except those in the Octave or a feast or solemnity.

Only during « privileged » seasons does the weekday of the season trump any memorial, optional or not. Privileged seasons include all weekdays of Lent, and of the last week of Advent. Easter season weekdays are not privileged.

On privileged weekdays you can celebrate the commemoration as follows: after the collect of the weekday, you say the gospel canticle antiphon of the saint (proper if available, if not common), and the collect of the saint.


I trust the iBreviary people to get it right, and just pray whatever comes up on my phone.


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I now think I was incorrect in my post above, writing that the Easter season was meant to be included in the “privileged seasons”. I do not think the special concluding prayer I wrote for the Optional Memorial of Saint Rita of Cascia in Eastertide was correct.

The main indication of this is the rank of days in the “Universal Norms for the Liturgical Year and the General Roman Calendar” in the 2010 Roman Missal has ranked as number 9 “Weekdays of Advent from 17 December up to and including 24 December. Days within the Octave of Christmas. Weekdays of Lent.” At number 12 it has:

“Optional Memorials, which, however, may be celebrated, in the special manner described in the General Instruction of the Roman Missal and of the Liturgy of the Hours, even on the days listed in no. 9.
In the same manner Obligatory Memorials may be celebrated as Optional Memorials if they happen to fall on Lenten weekdays.”

At number 13 it includes “Weekdays of the Easter Time from Monday after the Octave of Easter up to and including the Saturday before Pentecost.”

Another indication is from the Decree Anni liturgici ordinatione of 21 March 1969: “d. Saints’ days listed as optional memorials in the new Calendar are to be observed accordingly. The celebration is to be like a feast of the third class. But if they occur on the weekdays of Advent between 17 December and 24 December, the days within the octave of Christmas, or the weekdays of Lent, they are observed as a commemoration at the end of Lauds, with antiphon, verse and prayer.” (From “Documents on the Liturgy”, n. 3762).

Another indications is that the General Instruction of the Roman Missal has at the end of n. 355 “On weekdays of Easter Time, Memorials of Saints may rightly be celebrated in full.”

[Excerpts from the English translation of the Roman Missal © 2010, International Commission on English in the Liturgy Corporation. All rights reserved.]

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I haven’t been replying, but I am reading all your posts. They are greatly appreciated.

I have & am also going through the links and reading the information provided.

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