Wednesday, March 15, 2017
PROGRESSIVE SOLEMNITY IN THE ORDINARY FORM
In my previous parish, our 9:30 AM and 12:10 PM Masses were considered our "Principle" Masses. At these Mass all was chanted and incense used every Sunday at all the prescribed places, except for the elevations which we reserved for more solemn feasts like at Christmas and Easter and Corpus Christi.
Today, my former parish reserves incense for more solemn occasions as it has lapsed into the modern liturgist's suggestion (not to be found in the General Instruction of the Ordinary Form Roman Missal) that there be progressive solemnity.
What I found about doing it every Sunday is that people got use to incense and no one had a psychological reaction to start coughing. It was a ritual which is what ritual means, repeated and this is the only ritual in the sacramental system apart from the Chrism that touches the sense of smell.
On top of that, how to use incense came naturally to the altar servers. They knew exactly how to do it, light the charcoal and when to do it. If it is done only sporadically, well, you can only imagine how often the use of it needs to be explained to the servers and the congregation. And the coughs!!!!!
I have a disclaimer, I cannot use incense in my new church which is a brand new church as it has of all things, very sensitive smoke detectors. I learned that the hard way when I used incense at my first funeral in the new church and the fire alarm went off, with the most ear piercing screeching, blinding strobe lights and an automated voice screaming, EVACUATE NOW, EVACUATE NOW, A FIRE IS DETECTED, EVACUATE NOW over and over and to add insult to injury, the fire department came with sirens blaring too. Oh, the humanity of it all, but all the ruckus did raise the dead!
So just the thought of the use of incense in the new church causes me post traumatic stress syndrome!
But back to the topic at hand: Do you experience progressive solemnity in their parish or solemnity each Sunday at your principle Mass? Is incense and chant ever used by the priest????? I ask, you answer!