Friday, January 11, 2019



Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I was delighted to be able to genuflect (actually it was an attempt, but I digress) at the reading of the Gospel for Epiphany: Vidéntes autem stellam,
gavísi sunt gáudio magno valde. Et
intrántes domum, invenérunt púerum
cum María matre ejus, (hic
genuflectitur) et procidéntes
adoravérunt eum.


And behold the star,
which they had seen in the East, went
before them until it came and stood
over where the Child was. And seeing
the star they rejoiced with exceeding
great joy. And entering into the house,
they found the Child with Mary His
Mother, (Here genuflect) and falling
down they adored Him.

TJM said...

Thanks for sharing these photos. Such beauty, such dignity, such noble simplicity!

rcg said...

Hope your knees improve. What sort of turnout did you get?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

We get upwards to 15 or 20.

TJM said...

15-20? That's about the numbers at Sunday Mass in Germany!

Anonymous said...

What are the differences between a "Low" and "High" Mass? Use of incense? Length of prayers? Elaborateness of vestments?

Also, is it true there was not normally an Old Testament reading in the Latin Mass? One reading, then Psalms, then Gospel?

rcg said...

Anon 5:41pm. You are generally right. The Low Mass is not sung or chanted because it can be celebrated by the solo priest so many of the ceremonies are left out, like incense. The High Mass has has all of the ‘smells and bells’ because the priest has assistants to help him. The readings in the old form are usually psalms, Epistle, and Gospel, but Old Testament readings are included on major Holy Days and special days or commemorative Masses. There are ‘quotes’ or snippets of OT scripture in various lessons and prayers especially when they echo the theme of the Mass and the fulfillment of prophesy.

John Nolan said...

A Low Mass is spoken, not sung, and requires only a priest and a server. The celebrant reads both the Ordinary and Propers from the altar missal.

A High or Solemn Mass requires a deacon, subdeacon, two acolytes with lighted candles and a thurifer. There is usually an MC (though not in the Dominican rite). The subdeacon sings the Epistle, and the deacon the Gospel. The priest chants those parts which in a Low Mass he simply recites audibly, and a choir or schola sings the Proper chants and the Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Benedictus and Agnus Dei. The congregation should join them in singing the responses and can do so in the Kyrie etc. when these are in chant settings (as opposed to polyphonic ones). There is more ceremony, and the service is longer (60 to 90 minutes, compared with the 30 minutes of a Low Mass, although it should be stressed that the Low Mass does not leave out any of the Mass texts).

If deacon and subdeacon are not available you can still have a sung Mass (Missa Cantata) which may include lights and incense (and in England and N.America usually does). The priest has to sing the Epistle and Gospel himself, which he does facing the altar. This is sometimes referred to as a High Mass, although this is not strictly correct.

Except on Ember Days there are only two lections (Epistle and Gospel) but the 'Epistle' is sometimes an Old Testament reading, and on ferial days in Lent it invariably is so. Some of these readings are far longer than anything found in the Novus Ordo lectionary. For example, on Saturday of the third week we have the story of Susanna and the Elders, 51 verses from the book of Daniel. Gospels are frequently much longer, too.