Beautifying the Mass

Fr Charles Pope writes here on how learning to celebrate the Extraordinary Form of the Mass brought increased solemnity and grace to his celebration of the Ordinary Form. One of the things I learned while in training at St Mary’s, Greenville was how the Ordinary Form could be celebrated with great grace, beauty and solemnity. The new translation of the Ordinary Form of the Mass has helped this process even further. It is not only important for the priest to celebrate Mass with a ritualistic formality, but for the servers to do so as well. The formal gestures and actions, along with the vestments, help to block the priest’s personality from intruding, thus helping the people to see through him to the worship of Christ the King. You might also like to read this post on the meaning and form of the procession. Here’s a piece I wrote for Crisis magazine some time ago What I Tell My Altar Servers.

  • Stu

    “The formal gestures and actions, along with the vestments, help to block the priest’s personality from intruding, thus helping the people to see through him to the worship of Christ the King.”
    ————
    Amen. I would think it helps the priest to focus on his duties as well.

    Comment on the EF that ties in with your previous remarks on the procession. After I started to attend the EF, I became acquainted with the gesture of bowing to the priest as he passes both coming in and coming out of Mass. Keeping with above, it demonstrates that the faithful see the priest in his role as Christ.

    At least for me, I then saw a deeper meaning in the procession. It was a part of the Passion each week as we heralded the arrival of the Messiah before He was sacrificed, albeit now an unbloody Sacrifice. Then on the way out, He is again risen and we acknowledge Him rightfully again. Perhaps not intended that way, but that is something I see.

  • OneTimothyThreeFifteen

    Spot on.
    A priest who celebrates the OF, but takes Sacrosantum Concillium and ‘the Spirit of the Liturgy’ seriously,and applies them, shows how many EF groupies are merely expressing a preference, taste, or emotion, dressed up as something which merely appears to be objective and magisterial. Dawkins waffling on about fossils gives the same impression about Darwinism.

  • Clonmacnoise

    My favorite Mass is a 7:00 a.m. ordinary day…ordinary time…no music, no add ons…just Mass….doesn’t get better than that.


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