[quote="callmeChris, post:1, topic:204789"]
Hi, I just recently attended a friday service over at my parish. Our Priest was from what I head 'on vacation', and so a Deacon from another parish was invited. And so What happened was that HE (the deacon) presidede over the whole ceremony.He just rushed through the Kyrie, and didn't even say the Gloria. And before I knew it, we were already at the homily (if you could even call it a homily). He talked a little on how this country is founded by the laws of God, and how Our Lady is the Patron saint of this great country. But what he did was he called up 2 people, yeah 2 parishiners up to the altar, and he gave them the American Flag and showed them and us how and why we fold up the flag at military funereals. Did I forget to mention this took up 90% of the homily?
After this he rushed over and saidthe prayer intentions. After that he went over to the tabernacle and grabbed the ciborium, and placing his hand over it he said a prayer, and before I knew it, he said the "Agnus Dei". So I thought to myself "Oh no, you did not just fiddle your fingers in the ciboruim and grabbed Our Lord like that". He distributed the 'concecrated hosts' and he didn't even have a moment of silence after he just rushed up said 'peace be with you' and blessed us like the priest would.
My questions are:
Was this even valid?
Was this even a mass?
Can a Deacon preside over the whole mass?
What does the Church teach?
From the sound of it, it looks like you were at a Liturgy of the Word with Distribution of Communion (or in Canada a Celebration of the Word). Basically, not a Mass (no, a Deacon cannot preside over a Mass). I'm not sure if they are allowed to be celebrated in lieu of a daily mass or just on Sundays. 2 Sundays ago I attended one in the small town I am currently working in.
He probably shouldn't have placed his hand over the ciborium because that is an action reserved to a priest or bishop (heavily implying a consecration). The one I attended was actually laity presided, and as far as I could tell they were reading straight from the rubrics. It does include the distribution of communion that was reserved in the Tabernacle. The part between the prayers of the faithful and distribution of communion is fairly short (from what I remember, sort of a praise/thanksgiving song or something with an antiphon the people say in between verses), which is followed by someone elevating a host and saying "This is the Lamb of God..." (but a bit different from the Mass version). I was impressed that each of the 2 EMHCs gave communion to each other, which is a perfect understanding (it must be received from someone, only the presider or concelebrants can "take").