Anglican Use Mass in Orange County California

Before, I returned the Church, I had no idea that there were different rites within it. Since my return, I have taken the time to attend churches that celebrate mass in something other than the ordinary form. I have had the pleasure of experiencing the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom in a Ruthenian Church. I also went to a Maronite Church, which seemed identical almost to the Ruthenian Church. I have also attended the Extraordinary Form (both a low and a high mass).

I fell in love with the Extraordinary Form. I had never attended one. I was born after Vatican II took effect. To me it is like being in heaven. It is both majestic and reverent. After attending the EF, I really had no wish to return to the OF but my wife and children protested because they could not understand the Latin. I have nothing against the OF but in my experience the EF just touched my soul, not only because of the reverence but also the prayers were not only beautiful but catechistic. I have often wondered why, when the mass was reformed that it just did not follow the old form as opposed to the radical change that it resulted in. I asked myself, why couldn’t we have the EF in the vernacular. Surely this majestic liturgy could be celebrated in the English.

This weekend I had the privilege to experience an Anglican Use mass. This form of the mass was amazingly spiritual and beautiful. In short, it seems to me like it is the EF in the vernacular.

The mass was celebrated at the Blessed John Henry Newman Church, in Orange County California The church does not have its own building yet and mass was celebrated in the beautiful St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Santa Ana. It is located at 727 North Minter Street, Santa Ana, CA 92701. If you never have been to St. Joseph’s, I strongly suggest that you go. The priests there are orthodox and the church building is gorgeous.

Fr. Andrew Bartus is the pastor. I am extremely thankful to the pastor who showed me kindness when I was exchanging emails with him regarding the mass. He actually came up to me after the mass to say hello. I guess he was able to guess who I was since my family and I were the only ones who seemed confused as to when to kneel and when to stand! :slight_smile:

The number of the faithful was small …maybe about 20. The altar was set up differently than what I was used to. I counted 12 candles on the altar and it was set up ad orientem. The choir was very talented and so was the organist, they were up in the balcony area at the back of the church. There was also a cantor.

The services began the Asperges, just like the EF. I really like the prayers in the Asperges and I am sorry they were removed from the OF. The Asperges was slightly different than the EF mass but it was chanted in the English of the King James Bible. I think many of you will agree the King James English is majestic to say the least.

Fr. Bartus and the servers (is this the proper word?) prayed at the foot of the altar just like in the EF although unlike the EF many of the prayers offered by the Priest, we were able to hear. I could have sworn that I also heard Fr. Bartus pray in Latin, I am not sure but I am certain that that at least one of the Hymns that was sung was in Latin.

During the Liturgy of the Word the readings were chanted. The cantor was excellent when he did this. Fr. Bartus came down from the altar area into the nave to read the Gospel which was chanted. Before he read the Gospel I noticed that the bible was blessed with incense. The Nicene Creed was also chanted. There was a lot of chanting going on around here! I loved it. Many of the prayers are familiar but slightly different in the King’s English. During the Nicene creed, instead of praying that “ to judge the living and the dead” we prayed to “judge the quick and the dead”. And here I thought that was an Iron Maiden lyric! :slight_smile:

One thing that I did notice is that the Confiteor (if it can be called the Confiteor in the Anglican use mass) was different and it was more toward the end of the mass as opposed to the beginning.

Nearly all of the liturgy of the Eucharist were spent mostly kneeling including the Our Father which was chanted as well using the same chant that is used in the EF. Communion was done kneeling and on the tongue and the Priest instead of saying “the Body of Christ”, he instead said it more like the Latin “May the Body of Our Lord Jesus Christ preserve your soul for eternal life”.

Communion was received under one species although I might be wrong, I noticed that communion was also given to very young children. I noticed this in the Byzantine rite as well, although in the Byzantine rite I noticed that even babies were given communion. At the end of the Mass, the Gospel of John was read and we also prayed the Angelus.

It is my hope that those that read this post and those that live close to Orange County will be able to celebrate mass at the Blessed John Henry Newman Church. Brethren, in my most humble opinion, the Anglican Use mass is a jewel, …a gift to the Western Rite. This mass is basically the EF in the vernacular. It was a complete privilege for me to witness. I think I have found my home.

Hi Carlos,

I also attend Bl. John’s. As a former Anglo Catholic and for the past several years a Catholic attending a Latin Rite parish, I am very blessed to be attend a parish from which my roots are.

The children who received Communion who are very young, come from a family whose father is from the Eastern Rite tradition and therefore allowed to take Communion.

Since I also attend the OF Mass at my other parish, I must be careful to not confuse the wording at times, i.e. Creed and also with thy spirit, not "your spirit. It takes time to learn the small differences.

Welcome to Bl. John’s, you will find that attendance varies from week to week as many travel far to attend and can’t always be there.

Hope to meet you and your family after Mass in the future.

God Bless


I noticed that, and with thy spirit :slight_smile:

That makes sense with the children taking communion. I think it is so beautiful that the Eastern Church does that.

I do have a question, maybe you or someone else knows. If the Anglican mass derives from the Latin mass. I wonder why the penitential rite is right before the Liturgy of the Eucharist, and why the prayer is different? Just curious…

From what I understand the Anglican Missal was first produced in 1921 in England and a American Missal followed. Much was taken from the Roman Rite with the additional prayers from the Book of Common Prayer.

You might want to ask Fr. Bartus, as he should know much more accurate information than I or a layperson.

Although many Anglo Catholic parishes, at least in the past, used the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar, the Last Gospel and some form of devotion to the BVM, I don’t believe this is/was common in even high church parishes.

Every Anglo Catholic parish I ever attended always used the Missal in place of the BCP form of the liturgy.

The confession was moved, I have no knowledge as to why or for what reason the Confeitor was replaced, just guessing because within it, it ask Mary and all the saints to pray for us. The confession used is part of our Patrimony as are some of the beautiful prayers i.e. Prayer of Humble Access and the Prayer of Thanksgiving.

Since the Ordinariate at this point in time has drawn mostly Anglo Catholics, I assume this is what is considered part of their Patrimony. The Anglican Communion has never been unified as far as I know in how the Mass is celebrated and today it seems that each parish holds theological beliefs that differ from one place to another. There is no authority in the Anglican Communion, nor in the Continuing groups of Anglicans who have broken away from it and started their own denominations. Within the Ordinariate there will be much less of a variety of celebrating the liturgy. Once the Book of Divine Worship is revised, I believe that the AU liturgy will be universal. As I suggested Fr. Bartus will be much more helpful to answer any questions you have.

God Bless


This is very puzzling to me. Had you said “the Maronite liturgy seemed a lot like the Novus Ordo” or something along those lines, I wouldn’t have been too surprised, but an equation with the Byzantines does indeed surprise me. Are you sure you didn’t visit a Melkite church? Both the Melkites and Ruthenians are Byzantine, and although they have slightly varying traditions and usage, they are very similar to one another. If it really was a Maronite church, though, I’d be curious to know which one.

St. John the Evangelist here in Calgary uses the English Missal, with certain changes mandated by Rome (notably the Words of Consecration which were revised to match up with the English of the Ordinary Form). It’s very much Roman, but has beautiful BCP and Sarum elements.

I have observed at Low Mass:

  1. The prayers at the foot of the altar are there, including the Judica psalm and the two Confiteors (and I mean the traditional Roman Confiteors in hieratic English) and absolution.
  2. The Collect for Purity (now one of my favourite prayers) is always said, followed by the Summary of the Law.
  3. The Anglican Penitential Rite (“Ye that do truly and earnestly repent…”) is maintained after the Bidding Prayer and before the Offertory.
  4. The Prayer of Humble Access is maintained before Communion.
  5. The prayer of thanksgiving is maintained after Communion and before the Postcommunion.
  6. The Last Gospel is said.

At High Mass, for practical reasons, the Prayers at the Foot of the altar are omitted.

All this is approved, probably in the interim pending approval of the Missal, by the Holy See. However, while I do not have anything authoritative, I have heard that the Anglican Use Missal may actually be an adaptation of the English Missal rather than the BDW, with the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar and the Last Gospel as optional elements placed in an appendix. I may be sorely wrong though.

I have also attended Bl. JHN’s Catholic Church. Very beutiful mass. Very reverent.

no that’s not what I meant, I meant to say that the Ruthernian and the melkite were virtually identical…

sorry about that, I should have been more careful…I havent attended a maronite although I think there is a maronite church in the city of orange

Thanks for letting me know. I’m definitely going to have to check it out sometime. :thumbsup:

So I can attend this anglican-Catholic Mass as a Roman “Latin” Catholic, right…? Because its in communion with the Pope?


Well, that’s gonna be my new Church then… :slight_smile:

… And I’ll be tithing like I’ve never tithed before! :). :smiley:

Actually, there is a chance they may be meeting at St. Cecilia’s in Tustin from now on. Stay tuned.

yes, it is in communion with Rome. You will not regret it. This is an extraordinarily reverent mass. I love it.

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