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  #1  
Old Feb 9, '11, 7:42 pm
surritter surritter is offline
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Default "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

We've all heard the term "liturgy" used when referring to the Mass. I'm questioning whether it is truly a synonym. Think about it: we have Liturgy of the Hours. And even within the Mass, we have the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist.

To me that sounds like the Mass has two liturgies within it. Therefore, I'm thinking that liturgy shouldn't be used as an identical term for Mass.

Am I being too literalistic here? Should people that refer to the "Sunday Liturgy" be gently reminded that it's more proper to say "Sunday Mass"?
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  #2  
Old Feb 9, '11, 8:26 pm
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SMHW SMHW is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by surritter View Post
We've all heard the term "liturgy" used when referring to the Mass. I'm questioning whether it is truly a synonym. Think about it: we have Liturgy of the Hours. And even within the Mass, we have the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist.

To me that sounds like the Mass has two liturgies within it. Therefore, I'm thinking that liturgy shouldn't be used as an identical term for Mass.

Am I being too literalistic here? Should people that refer to the "Sunday Liturgy" be gently reminded that it's more proper to say "Sunday Mass"?

I don't think it's a matter of propriety but rather of precision.

They are not fully equivalent terms. Since I'm a math person I like to look at the matter with sets. The liturgy (or if you prefer, liturgies) that are the Mass are subsets of the set of all liturgies.

So it is correct to call the Mass "Sunday Liturgy". But it is not so precise as referring to it as Mass since there can be Sunday Liturgies that are not Masses.
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  #3  
Old Feb 9, '11, 8:26 pm
ConstantineTG ConstantineTG is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Mass comes from the Latin missa meaning "sending" or "dismissal"

Liturgy comes from the Greek meaning service.

Also the entire "Mass" in the Byzantine Rite is called "Divine Liturgy".
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  #4  
Old Feb 9, '11, 8:28 pm
TheMc TheMc is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SMHW View Post
I don't think it's a matter of propriety but rather of precision.

They are not fully equivalent terms. Since I'm a math person I like to look at the matter with sets. The liturgy (or if you prefer, liturgies) that are the Mass are subsets of the set of all liturgies.

So it is correct to call the Mass "Sunday Liturgy". But it is not so precise as referring to it as Mass since there can be Sunday Liturgies that are not Masses.
If I had my way, I'd go to two "Sunday Liturgies" each week: Mass and Vespers II

In all seriousness, SMHW hit the nail on the head.
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  #5  
Old Feb 9, '11, 8:29 pm
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SMHW SMHW is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

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Originally Posted by ConstantineTG View Post
Mass comes from the Latin missa meaning "sending" or "dismissal"

Liturgy comes from the Greek meaning service.

Also the entire "Mass" in the Byzantine Rite is called "Divine Liturgy".
I was just about to amend my previous post to say that in non-Roman Catholicism Divine Liturgy is the "proper" nomenclature.
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  #6  
Old Feb 9, '11, 8:36 pm
ConstantineTG ConstantineTG is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

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Originally Posted by SMHW View Post
I was just about to amend my previous post to say that in non-Roman Catholicism Divine Liturgy is the "proper" nomenclature.
You can't say non-Roman Catholics because in the Syriac Rites the Liturgy is called Holy Qurbono/Qurbana.

Simply Liturgy comes from Greek so its used more by those of the Greek tradition such as the Byzantines. Mass comes from Latin and is used by the Roman Church.

Mass is just what the Roman Church decided to call Liturgy in Latin.
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  #7  
Old Feb 9, '11, 9:09 pm
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Elizium23 Elizium23 is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

"Liturgy" has the connotation of an ongoing action, it is a word that meant "the work of the people." You have already cited the example of Liturgy of the Hours, which comprises several distinct "hours" but are not individually referred to as "liturgies"; there is also the Liturgical Calendar which describes the cycles of readings and saints and feast days which are celebrated throughout time. By referring to the liturgical calendar and all its components such as LOTH and the Mass, you can see that liturgy is an ongoing activity of life in which we participate on the occasions when we join the prayer of the Heavenly Kingdom.

There is nothing wrong with referring to a Sunday liturgy as a single event. In a similar way, the Mass contains such things as the Penitential Rite and the Communion Rite, but of course "rite" can also be used to designate a liturgical patrimony such as Latin, Byzantine, or Syriac. People often confuse the terminology of "rite" and "church," but I don't think you will confuse anyone by saying that Sunday liturgy begins at 10:30. You will be understood in the East and the West and nobody will question whether you mean the Word or the Eucharist.
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  #8  
Old Feb 9, '11, 9:56 pm
ProVobis ProVobis is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SMHW View Post
I don't think it's a matter of propriety but rather of precision.

They are not fully equivalent terms. Since I'm a math person I like to look at the matter with sets. The liturgy (or if you prefer, liturgies) that are the Mass are subsets of the set of all liturgies.

So it is correct to call the Mass "Sunday Liturgy". But it is not so precise as referring to it as Mass since there can be Sunday Liturgies that are not Masses.
I agree, although the term "services" may be even broader. However many Protestants refer to their services as liturgies as well.

Quote:
mass (2)
"Eucharistic service," O.E. męsse, from V.L. *messa "eucharistic service," lit. "dismissal," from L.L. missa "dismissal," fem. pp. of mittere "to let go, send," from concluding words of the service, Ite, missa est, "Go, (the prayer) has been sent," or "Go, it is the dismissal."

liturgy
1550s, "the service of the Holy Eucharist," from M.Fr. liturgie, from L.L. liturgia "public service, public worship," from Gk. leitourgia, from leitourgos "one who performs a public ceremony or service, public servant," from leito- "public" (from laos "people;" cf. leiton "public hall," leite "priestess") + -ergos "that works," from ergon "work" (see urge (v.)). Meaning "collective formulas for the conduct of divine service in Christian churches" is from 1590s.
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  #9  
Old Feb 10, '11, 5:59 am
laszlo laszlo is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

The word 'liturgy' is much wider the the Mass, it contains the rites for sacraments, sacramentals and also the divine office, and other communal prayers like litanies, novenas etc.

To celebrate a Mass is restricted to priests, most other liturgies may be performed by layman.

I feel that calling the Mass Sunday Liturgy is similar than calling the celebrating priests presider: not entirely incorrect, but tendency toward the elimination of the difference between the clerics and laity.
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  #10  
Old Feb 10, '11, 6:22 am
ConstantineTG ConstantineTG is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by laszlo View Post
The word 'liturgy' is much wider the the Mass, it contains the rites for sacraments, sacramentals and also the divine office, and other communal prayers like litanies, novenas etc.

To celebrate a Mass is restricted to priests, most other liturgies may be performed by layman.

I feel that calling the Mass Sunday Liturgy is similar than calling the celebrating priests presider: not entirely incorrect, but tendency toward the elimination of the difference between the clerics and laity.
Not necessarily. Again, you don't expect someone to call the Divine Liturgy or Holy Qurbana as Mass. Mass came from a Latin term which the Latin Church uses to call the Eucharistic Liturgy. But Mass is by no means a universal term for the Eucharistic Liturgy, so to make a claim that Liturgy is a wrong term is a wrong claim.
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  #11  
Old Feb 10, '11, 6:29 am
thomas jd thomas jd is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by surritter View Post
We've all heard the term "liturgy" used when referring to the Mass. I'm questioning whether it is truly a synonym. Think about it: we have Liturgy of the Hours. And even within the Mass, we have the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist.

To me that sounds like the Mass has two liturgies within it. Therefore, I'm thinking that liturgy shouldn't be used as an identical term for Mass.

Am I being too literalistic here? Should people that refer to the "Sunday Liturgy" be gently reminded that it's more proper to say "Sunday Mass"?
Liturgy = "Work of the People"
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  #12  
Old Feb 10, '11, 7:27 am
puzzleannie puzzleannie is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by surritter View Post
To me that sounds like the Mass has two liturgies within it. Therefore, I'm thinking that liturgy shouldn't be used as an identical term for Mass.

Am I being too literalistic here? Should people that refer to the "Sunday Liturgy" be gently reminded that it's more proper to say "Sunday Mass"?
Liturgy is the overall term for the public worship of the Church, literally the work of the people, and Mass is one form of liturgy, and the Eucharist celebrated within Mass is the source and summit of all liturgy, and of all the work of the Church. The liturgy of the hours or divine office, and all the rites and sacraments of the Church are also liturgy.
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  #13  
Old Feb 10, '11, 10:34 am
OraLabora OraLabora is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMc View Post
If I had my way, I'd go to two "Sunday Liturgies" each week: Mass and Vespers II

In all seriousness, SMHW hit the nail on the head.
If I had my way I'd go to eight Sunday liturgies each week:

First Vespers on Saturday evening
Vigils
Lauds
Tierce
The Mass
Sext+None
Second Vespers
Compline

In fact I will do just that this coming Sunday as I'll be on retreat in a Benedictine monastery
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  #14  
Old Feb 10, '11, 11:38 am
Evan Evan is offline
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Default Re: "Liturgy" interchangeable with "Mass"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by laszlo View Post
The word 'liturgy' is much wider the the Mass, it contains the rites for sacraments, sacramentals and also the divine office, and other communal prayers like litanies, novenas etc.

To celebrate a Mass is restricted to priests, most other liturgies may be performed by layman.

I feel that calling the Mass Sunday Liturgy is similar than calling the celebrating priests presider: not entirely incorrect, but tendency toward the elimination of the difference between the clerics and laity.
I think it's the other way around, the Liturgy of the Hours is the only liturgy that can be celebrated without an ordained minister (Deacon, Priest or Bishop).
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