The term literally means "our passover" in Latin. It has two distinguishable meanings in the BCP. 1) Canticle based on 1 Cor 5:7-8, Rom 6:9-11, and 1 Cor 15:20-22. It is used as an invitatory anthem in Easter Week at Morning Prayer. It may be used daily in the Easter season until Pentecost (BCP, pp. 46, 83). This canticle is one of three that may be chosen as the song of praise to begin the eucharist at the Easter Vigil (BCP, p. 294). It is also one of three that may be chosen as the canticle that is sung or said in the Burial Office as the body is borne from the church at the end of the commendation (BCP, p. 500). It is an appropriate choice for use as the song of praise at the beginning of the eucharist during the Easter season (BCP, p. 356). This canticle was the initial song of praise in the Anglican rite for Easter Day in the 1549 BCP. Musical settings of this canticle are found in The Hymnal 1982 at S 16-S 20, S 46-S 50. 2) Fraction anthem based on 1 Cor 5:7-8. This anthem may be sung or said as the bread is broken for distribution and chalices are filled with wine. It may be sung or said as a versicle and response. Its use is optional. The Alleluias are omitted during Lent, and may be omitted at other times except during the Easter season (BCP, p. 364). Musical settings of this fraction anthem are found in The Hymnal 1982 at S 151-S 156.
Pascha nostrum (Christ our Passover)
Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from "An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians," Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.