Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, “Alleluia” is prohibited on solemnities during Lent, 2003, Private.
During a luncheon following the Chrism Mass, priests disagreed on whether the Alleluia is sung on a solemnity during Lent. One of the priests, recognizing the confusion with the rubrics, sent a query to the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. The following is the response from that Congregation.
CONGREGATIO DE CULTU DIVINO ET DISCIPLINA SACRAMENTORUM
Prot. N. _____,
Reverend and dear Father,
The Congregation for Divine Worship acknowledges receipt of your letter of _____, in which you raise the question of whether the Alleluia is to be recited on the Solemnity of St. Joseph or the Solemnity of the Annunciation during the Season of Lent.
To the Normae de anno liturgico, n. 28, which you note in your letter, there might be added another text which addresses your question with even greater precision, namely the Circular letter “De festis paschalibus praeparandis et celebrandis,” sent by this Dicastery to the Presidents of the Conferences of Bishops on 16 January 1988, and subsequently published in the Notitiae (1988) 81-107. Paragraph 18 of that letter states: "...ab initio Quadragesimae usque ad Vigiliam paschalem ommittitur 'Alleluia' etiam in sollemnitatibus et festis."
You indicate that some confusion regarding this matter seems to be related to the fact that the Lectionary used in the United States of America includes an Alleluia verse in the readings for these Solemnities. However, a careful examination of the Lectionary most recently approved by the Holy See for that country will reveal that the Alleluia for these days is given within brackets, which indicate that the Alleluia would not always be used; in actual fact, it would be used only rarely, whenever one of these Solemnities might fall on a day when it could not be celebrated and would therefore be moved to a day outside Lent, according to nn. 56 or 60 of the same Normae de anno Liturgico. At the same time, the confusion on the part of some priests to which you make reference does seem to invite reflection on whether still greater clarity might be sought in the presentation of the relevant norms in the Ordo lectiomum Missae, and this fact will no doubt be taken into account in future editions.
Thanking you for your interest and with every prayerful good wish, I am
Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, “Alleluia” is prohibited on solemnities during Lent, 2003, Private, CLSA, Roman Replies and Advisory Opinions, 2003, 15-16.