"I will go in unto the Altar of God
To God, Who giveth joy to my youth"
Tridentine Community News (January 22, 2014):
In the Ordinary Form of the Mass, certain Feast Days may be transferred to the nearest Sundays, either by diocesan norms or by regulation of the National Conference of Bishops. In the Extraordinary Form, this sort of transference is called an “External Solemnity” and is governed by liturgical law. These moves are optional and do not necessarily take place in unison with their Ordinary Form counterpart Feasts. Corpus Christi is one of the Feasts on which such a transference is permitted. If the moved Feast is not one of our Lord (e.g.: Ss. Peter & Paul on June 29), the displaced Mass of the Sunday is commemorated with a second Collect, Secret, and Postcommunion.
The Sacred Ministers and Servers at Solemn High and Pontifical Masses
As a follow-up to last week’s column describing the roles of altar servers at the Tridentine Mass, this week we will be examining the additional parties involved in the sanctuary during Solemn High Masses and Pontifical Masses, the latter being Masses in which a bishop is the celebrant.
The Extraordinary Form does not permit concelebration, except during a Mass of Ordination when the new priests recite the Canon along with the bishop. Instead, the Tridentine Mass offers the option of a Solemn High Mass, in which additional sacred ministers fulfill the roles of Deacon and Subdeacon. The Deacon chants the Gospel and assists the priest at the altar. The Subdeacon chants the Epistle and stands at the foot of the altar during the Canon, holding the paten under a humeral veil as a symbol of respect for the sacred vessel, until it is required later in the Mass.
The Deacon must be an ordained deacon or priest. The Subdeacon should be someone who has at least received tonsure, or its Novus Ordo equivalent, Admission to Candidacy or simple religious profession. Following a ruling of the Pontifical Commission Ecclésia Dei, a man who has been Instituted as an Acolyte according to the Ordinary Form may also serve as a Subdeacon. Laypeople thus serving may not wear the biretta and may not handle the chalice and ciboria during the Mass.
In a Pontifical Solemn Mass, there are additional roles: An Assistant Priest helps the bishop with the ceremony. There may be two Assistant Deacons at the throne. A Subdeacon of the Cross, along with a Crosier Bearer server, handle the bishop’s symbol of authority. Additional servers are the Mitre Bearer, who handles the bishop’s headdress; the Bugia Bearer, who carries the small hand-candle that is held next to the Missal and Pontifical (book with the Ordinary of the Mass); a Train Bearer, if the bishop is wearing a Cappa Magna; a Gremial Bearer to handle the silk veil spread across the bishop’s lap; and a Book Bearer, who holds the Missal and Pontifical in front of the bishop. The structured movements of sacred ministers and servers are almost all prescribed in the rubrics. Far from being distractions, they are yet another aspect of the Tridentine Mass designed to focus one’s mind on the sacred presence of our Lord on the altar.
Brooklyn’s Holy Name of Jesus Church Restoration
More and more we are seeing churches that had been modified in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s being restored to something approximating their original historic look. A particularly impressive recent example is Holy Name Church in Brooklyn, New York. The accompanying photos show the church in its original configuration, in its 1980s “hockey stick” arrangement, and finally in its newly restored setup. Kudos also to the parish for holding a Solemn High Tridentine Mass – depicted in the last photo – to mark the completion of the restoration. [First and last photos from the Society of St. Hugh of Cluny]
Tridentine Masses This Coming Week
- Mon. 06/23 7:00 PM: High Mass at St. Thomas the Apostle, Ann Arbor (Vigil of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist) – Reception for people of all ages follows Mass
- Mon. 06/23 7:00 PM: Low Mass at St. Joseph (Vigil of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist)
- Tue. 06/24 7:00 PM: High Mass at St. Benedict/Assumption-Windsor (Nativity of St. John the Baptist)
- Fri. 06/27 7:00 PM: High Mass at St. Leo, Detroit (Sacred Heart of Jesus) – Dinner for young adults age 18-35 follows Mass, organized by Juvntútem Michigan