Postcommunion (Latin: Postcommunio) is the text said or sung on a reciting tone following the Communion of the Mass.
In chant, a reciting tone can refer to either a repeated musical pitch or to the entire melodic formula for which that pitch is a structural note. In Gregorian chant, the first is also called tenor, dominant or tuba, while the second includes psalm tones as well as simpler formulae for other readings and for prayers.
The Communion is a refrain sung with psalm recitation during the distribution of the Eucharist in the Divine Liturgy or Mass. As chant it was connected with the ritual act of Christian communion.
Every Postcommunion (and secret) corresponds to a collect. These are the three fundamental prayers of any given Proper Mass. The Postcommunion is said or chanted exactly like the Collect. First comes that of the Mass celebrated; then, if other Masses are commemorated, their Postcommunions follow in the same order and with the same final conclusion as the collects.
The Secret is a prayer said in a low voice by the priest or bishop during religious services.
The collect is a short general prayer of a particular structure used in Christian liturgy.
After the Communion, when the celebrant has arranged the chalice, he goes to the epistle side and reads the Communion antiphon. He then comes to the middle and says or sings "Dominus Vobiscum" ("The Lord be with you"; in the early Middle Ages he did not turn to the people this time), goes back to the Epistle side, and says or sings one or more Postcommunions, exactly as the collects.
In the history of Europe, the Middle Ages lasted from the 5th to the 15th century. It began with the fall of the Western Roman Empire and merged into the Renaissance and the Age of Discovery. The Middle Ages is the middle period of the three traditional divisions of Western history: classical antiquity, the medieval period, and the modern period. The medieval period is itself subdivided into the Early, High, and Late Middle Ages.
An epistle is a writing directed or sent to a person or group of people, usually an elegant and formal didactic letter. The epistle genre of letter-writing was common in ancient Egypt as part of the scribal-school writing curriculum. The letters in the New Testament from Apostles to Christians are usually referred to as epistles. Those traditionally attributed to Paul are known as Pauline epistles and the others as catholic epistles.
At ferial Masses in Lent the Oratio super populum follows the last Postcommunion. The celebrant sings Oremus; the deacon turning towards the people chants: Humiliate capita vestra Deo, on do with the cadence la, do, si, si, do for the last five syllables. Meanwhile, everyone, including the celebrant, bows the head. The deacon turns towards the altar and the celebrant chants the prayer appointed in the Mass. At low Mass the celebrant himself says the same text and does not turn towards the people. The deacon's exclamation apparently was introduced when this prayer became a speciality of Lent (Durandus mentions it).
Lent is a solemn religious observance in the Christian liturgical calendar that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends approximately six weeks later on Holy Saturday, the day before Easter Sunday. The purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer for Easter through prayer, doing penance, mortifying the flesh, repentance of sins, almsgiving, and denial of ego. This event is observed in the Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, Lutheran, Methodist, Moravian, Oriental Orthodox, Reformed, and Roman Catholic Churches. Some Anabaptist and evangelical churches also observe the Lenten season.
Oremus is the invitation to pray, said before short prayers in the Roman Catholic Mass and the Lutheran Divine Service, as well as other Western liturgies.
A deacon is a member of the diaconate, an office in Christian churches that is generally associated with service of some kind, but which varies among theological and denominational traditions. Major Christian churches, such as the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Anglican church, view the diaconate as part of the clerical state.
The prayer after communion was mentioned in the first century Didache document.
The Didache, also known as The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles, is a brief anonymous early Christian treatise written in Koine Greek, dated by most modern scholars to the first century. The first line of this treatise is "The teaching of the Lord to the Gentiles by the twelve apostles". The text, parts of which constitute the oldest extant written catechism, has three main sections dealing with Christian ethics, rituals such as baptism and Eucharist, and Church organization. The opening chapters describe the virtuous Way of Life and the wicked Way of Death. The Lord's Prayer is included in full. Baptism is by immersion, or by affusion if immersion is not practical. Fasting is ordered for Wednesdays and Fridays. Two primitive Eucharistic prayers are given. Church organization was at an early stage of development. Itinerant apostles and prophets are important, serving as "chief priests" and possibly celebrating the Eucharist. Meanwhile, local bishops and deacons also have authority and seem to be taking the place of the itinerant ministry.
The Communion act finishes the essential Eucharistic service, and early Masses, as described by Justin Martyr, did not have anything afterward. However, prayers were later added. The earliest complete liturgy extant, that of the "Apostolic Constitutions", contains two such prayers, a thanksgiving and a blessing.
The Eucharist is a Christian rite that is considered a sacrament in most churches, and as an ordinance in others. According to the New Testament, the rite was instituted by Jesus Christ during the Last Supper; giving his disciples bread and wine during the Passover meal, Jesus commanded his followers to "do this in memory of me" while referring to the bread as "my body" and the cup of wine as "the new covenant in my blood". Through the Eucharistic celebration Christians remember both Christ's sacrifice of himself on the cross and his commission of the apostles at the Last Supper.
Justin Martyr was an early Christian apologist, and is regarded as the foremost interpreter of the theory of the Logos in the 2nd century. He was martyred, alongside some of his students, and is considered a saint by the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, and the Oriental Orthodox Churches.
The Apostolic Constitutions or Constitutions of the Holy Apostles is a Christian collection of eight treatises which belongs to the Church Orders, a genre of early Christian literature, that offered authoritative "apostolic" prescriptions on moral conduct, liturgy and Church organization. The work can be dated from 375 to 380 AD. The provenance is usually regarded as Syria, probably Antioch. The author is unknown, even if since James Ussher it was considered to be the same author of the letters of Pseudo-Ignatius, perhaps the 4th-century Eunomian bishop Julian of Cilicia.
A significant resemblance between the Roman Rite and that of the "Apostolic Constitutions" is that at Rome, too, there were formerly at every Mass two prayers of the same nature. In the "Leonine Sacramentary" they have no title; but their character is obvious. The Gelasian Sacramentary calls the first postcommunio, the second ad populum.
In both sacramentaries these two prayers form part of the normal Mass said throughout the year, though not every Mass has both; the prayers "ad populum" in the latter book are comparatively rare. They also begin to change their character. The formerly constant terms tuere, protege, etc. are rarer; many are ordinary collects with no pronounced idea of prayers for blessing and protection.
In the "Gregorian Sacramentary" the second prayer, now called Super populum, occurs almost only from Septuagesima to Easter; the first, Ad complendum, continues throughout the year, but both have lost much of their original character. The Ad complendum prayer (which became the post-communion) has become a collect formed on the model of the collect at the beginning of Mass, though generally it keeps some allusion to the Communion just received. That is still the state of these prayers after the Communion.
The second, Oratio super populum, is said only in ferial Masses in Lent. This restriction apparently results from the shortening of the Mass (which explains many omissions and abbreviations) and the tendency of Lent to keep longer forms, such as more than two lessons. Medieval commentatorsexplain this mystically; Honorius thinks the prayer to be a substitute for the Eastern blessed bread ( antidoron ).
The Oratio super populum is now always the prayer at vespers on the same day. It has been suggested that its use at Mass in Lent may be a remnant of a custom, now kept only on Holy Saturday, of singing vespers at the end of Mass. The first prayer, called Ad complendum in the "Gregorian Sacramentary", became the modern Postcommunion, now its official name. Its name was uncertain through the Middle Ages. Duranduscalls it merely Oratio novissima, using the name Postcommunio for the Communion antiphon.
The first "Roman Ordo" calls the prayer Oratio ad complendum (xxi); Rupert of Deutz calls it Ad complendum.But others give it the modern name, and so do many medieval missals (e.g. the Sarum). The Postcommunion has lost much of its original character as a thanksgiving prayer and has absorbed the idea of the old Oratio ad populum. It is now always a petition, though the note of thanksgiving is often included (e.g. in the Mass Statuit, for a confessor pontiff). It has been affected by the Collect on which it is modelled, though there is generally an allusion to the Communion.
In contemporary Catholic usage, the postcommunion corresponds to the Prayer after Communion and is sung or recited audibly throughout by the celebrant.
Mass is the main eucharistic liturgical service in many forms of Western Christianity. The term Mass is commonly used in the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches, as well as in some Lutheran, Methodist, Western Rite Orthodox, and Old Catholic churches.
Vespers is a sunset evening prayer service in the Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Eastern Catholic, Anglican, and Lutheran liturgies of the canonical hours. The word comes from the Greek ἑσπέρα ("hespera") and the Latin vesper, meaning "evening". It is also referred to in the Anglican tradition as evening prayer or evensong. The term is also used in some Protestant denominations to describe evening services.
A memorial in the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church is a lower-ranked feast day in honour of a saint, the dedication of a church, or a mystery of the religion.
In the Latin Catholic Church, a sacramentary was a book used for liturgical services and Mass by a priest, containing all and only the words spoken or sung by him. Compared to a missal, which carries all texts and readings read by the priest and others during Mass, a sacramentary omits the texts and readings said by everyone other than the priest, but also includes texts for services other than Mass. As the sacramentary presupposes that the celebrant is normally a bishop, it also usually supplies the texts for ordinations, at the consecration of a church and altar and many exorcisms, blessings, and consecrations that were later inserted in the Pontifical and Ritual.
The Divine Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts is a Byzantine Rite liturgical service which is performed on the weekdays of Great Lent wherein communion is received from Gifts that are sanctified (consecrated) in advance, hence its name; this Divine Liturgy has no anaphora.
The Office of the Dead or Office for the Dead is a prayer cycle of the Canonical Hours in the Catholic Church, Anglican Church and Lutheran Church, said for the repose of the soul of a decedent. It is the proper reading on All Souls' Day for all souls in Purgatory, and can be a votive office on other days when said for a particular decedent. The work is composed of different psalms, scripture, prayers and other parts, divided into The Office of Readings, Lauds, Daytime Prayer, and Vespers.
The Gallican Rite is a historical version of Christian liturgy and other ritual practices in Western Christianity. It is not a single rite but a family of rites within the Latin Church, which comprised the majority use of most of Western Christianity for the greater part of the 1st millennium AD. The rites first developed in the early centuries as the Syriac-Greek rites of Jerusalem and Antioch and were first translated into Latin in various parts of the Western Roman Empire Praetorian prefecture of Gaul. By the 5th century, it was well established in the Roman civil diocese of Gaul, an early center of Christianity. Ireland too is known to have had a form of this Gallican Liturgy mixed with Celtic customs.
In the Latin liturgical rites, a commemoration is the recital, within the Liturgy of the Hours or the Mass of one celebration, of part of another celebration, generally of lower rank, that is impeded because of a coincidence of date.
The Roman Rite is the main or Western liturgical rite of the Roman Catholic Church, the main particular church sui iuris of the Catholic Church. It is the most widespread liturgical rite in Christianity as a whole. The Roman Rite gradually became the predominant rite used by the Western Church, developed out of many local variants from Early Christianity on, not amounting to distinctive rites, that existed in the medieval manuscripts, but have been progressively reduced since the invention of printing, most notably since the reform of liturgical law in the 16th century at the behest of the Council of Trent (1545–63) and more recently following the Second Vatican Council (1962–65).
The term "Celtic Rite" is appliedto the various liturgical rites used in Celtic Christianity in Britain, Ireland and Brittany and the monasteries founded by St. Columbanus and Saint Catald in France, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy during the early middle ages. The term does not imply homogeneity; the evidence, scanty and fragmentary as it is, is in favour of considerable diversity.
Solemn Mass is the full ceremonial form of the Tridentine Mass, celebrated by a priest with a deacon and a subdeacon, requiring most of the parts of the Mass to be sung, and the use of incense. It is also called High Mass or Solemn High Mass. However, in the United States the term "High Mass" is also used to describe the less elaborate Missa Cantata, which lacks deacon and subdeacon and some of the ceremonies connected with them. This article deals with Solemn Mass as celebrated according to the Tridentine use.
The Use of York, was a variant of the Roman Rite practised in part of northern England, prior to the reign of Henry VIII. During Henry's reign the Use of York was suppressed in favour of the Sarum rite, followed by the Book of Common Prayer. "Use" denotes the special liturgical customs which prevailed in a particular diocese or group of dioceses; it is one of the medieval English Uses, together with the Use of Sarum.
The Solemn Collects are a set of prayers of two types used in the Good Friday liturgy of the Episcopal Church (USA), which is published in the 1979 edition of the Book of Common Prayer. They are among the most ancient prayers of the Christian church.
The Mass, known more fully as the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the central liturgical ritual in the Roman Catholic Church where the bread and wine are consecrated and become the body and blood of Christ. As defined by the Church at the Council of Trent, in the Mass, "The same Christ who offered himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross, is present and offered in an unbloody manner." The Church describes the Holy Mass as "the source and summit of the Christian life". It teaches that through consecration by an ordained priest the bread and wine become the sacrificial body, blood, soul, and divinity of Christ as the sacrifice on Calvary made truly present once again on the altar. The Catholic Church permits only baptised members in the state of grace to receive Christ in the Eucharist.
The Divine Service is a title given to the Eucharistic liturgy as used in the various Lutheran churches. It has its roots in the pre-Tridentine Mass as revised by Martin Luther in his Formula missae of 1523 and his Deutsche Messe of 1526. It was further developed through the Kirchenordnungen of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries that followed in Luther's tradition.
A liturgical book, or service book, is a book published by the authority of a church body that contains the text and directions for the liturgy of its official religious services.
The liturgical books of the Roman Rite are the official books containing the words to be recited and the actions to be performed in the celebration of Catholic liturgy as done in Rome. The Roman Rite of the Latin or Western Church of the Catholic Church is the most widely celebrated of the scores of Catholic liturgical rites. The titles of some of these books contain the adjective "Roman", e.g. the "Roman Missal", to distinguish them from the liturgical books for the other rites of the Church,.
The so-called Celtic Mass is the liturgy of the Christian office of the Mass as it was celebrated in the so-called Celtic Christianity of the Early Middle Ages.