Did they use a lot of incense at your parish for today? I did the incense for the 8:00 a.m. Mass, used three charcoal, and loaded it up with incense. The sanctuary was engulfed in the smoke. The person, who did it at the 10:00 a.m. Mass, only used one charcoal and one scoop of incense. So, not a lot of smoke.
Sadly, there was no incense last night; I wasn’t there today but I know that there was no intention of using any because it would have caused at least one family to leave with a kid in respiratory distress.
The significance of the Mass at Sunrise is different than the Mass during the day. You will note that there are different readings and the whole 9 yards.
At the Shrine, they used a remarkable amount of incense for the vigil, as they should.
I personally wish they would use far more incense at all principal Masses in all parishes throughout the year. The burning incense represents are prayers rising to God.
(Having said that, I recognize that there are some who are allergic to incense. I also think that parishes should have at least one incense free Mass to accommodate those are are genuinely allergic)
Proper amount during the Easter Vigil, no incense during the Easter Liturgy this morning. I attended both.
I say there is no such thing as too much incense, so I wouldn’t worry about it.
Each evening at St. Peter’s Basilica, during daily Mass at the Altar of the Chair, they use TONS of incense throughout the Mass, especially the opening procession. You look back and see the procession approaching from afar, and you can barely see the altar servers and others walking in line because they all seem to be engulfed in a dense cloud of smoke. So no, I wouldn’t worry if there was “too much” smoke at your parish. Please continue like that.
It is the priest who puts in the incense, so it is up to the priest to determine how much to use. The altar server’s job is to keep the charcol burning.
I always sit way in the back when I know there is going to be quite a bit of incense at Mass (e.g., Easter and Christmas liturgies) because the stuff makes me sneeze repeatedly!
Our Cathedral had a portable smoke filter which kind of vacuumed up excess smoke. I’ve never seen that before. It was off to the side and behind the altar, so it wasn’t really visible from the front.
Oh, yes there is. It’s only happened once, but I had to leave because there was so much it was making me feel sick. I was fine once I got outside into the fresh air.
There was a limited amount last night at the Vigil. Since the ambo is near where the choir is located I think our priest administrator (who is a singer) and the music/liturgy director have limited the amount of incense used. In past years they have used much more incense and it has made it difficult for the choir to sing. Last nighti it only took a couple of gulps of water and I was fine. (I took my allergy meds ahead of time.)
I love the scent of incense but it goes without saying that scents of any kind (incense, aftershave, perfume, deodorant, lotion, etc.) have a negative effect on singers.
This morning there was no incense.
Oh well, now I’m curious how bad it was at your church that day.
I have the impression that church incense is something that is appreciated with time. I remember NOT liking church incense as a child and teenager. I just felt repelled by the smoke and found it difficult to breathe. But then again, incense was only used at our parish for funerals and nothing more—so it was extremely rare when I was actually exposed to it. Then I later learned to like it with the more exposure I had to it. I’ve spent significant time in churches where they use it frequently, so maybe that’s why I have learned to like? Now I even burn my own church incense at home and have no problems with breathing as I did as a child…
Yet another reason singers should never be up in the sanctuary!
We use very little incense because of the smoke alarms. The priest on Thursday night used too much and the alarm went off during the first reading. After the pastor assured people that it was just the incense the lector continued (through the alarm) while the pastor ran down the basement to reset the alarm (he was not presiding but concelebrating). Next we worried about the fire department coming so the other associate, who was also concelebrating, went outside in the front to meet up with the fire dept. I ran to the back parking lot. There I met a man who said he was one of the volunteer firemen and called the department to head them off and tell them not to come. We were lucky we don’t have sprinklers in the Church or our Elect would have had an early baptism. So at the Vigil we used very little incense and none today…also because we ran out of charcoal as someone forgot to order more.
We use a ton of incense at all solemnity and Sunday Masses. I was thurifer at the 7:30 today and crucifer at the 9:30–and we used a lot at both Masses.
We use a type of incense that is much less irritating, and actually much smokier. I bought, at my rector’s request, pure frankincense in Jerusalem this December. I brought back 10 kilos for less than $5 per pound; the cheapest incense in the states is over $20. The pure stuff is superb–no perfumes or wood chips or rose petals added.
Easter Vigil: The charcoal in the thurible was taken from the fire that our bishop blessed!
Anyway we use incense on every mass unless there aren’t enough servers. How much smoke really depends on the priest; we have one that only adds about half a spoon each time, and one that loves to add about 3-5 spoons (lol xd) of incense.
We had an appropriate amount of incense. I wish we would use more. We’ve had it at most Sunday Masses the last few weeks. Love it!
I agree. I used to get “sick” and “headaches” at my old parish when I was younger, a church which happened to only use incense on a few occasions.
Since switching parishes for various reasons, I actually love incense. We use it every week (at least) and lots of it. Seeing a connection?
And we aren’t in the sanctuary. Our ambo is not in the “sanctuary”. We have kind of a modified antiphonal style Church where the altar is in the middle of the “center aisle” and the ambo at opposite end from the main entrance.
In the sanctuary, no; but in a proper choir the effect would likely be the same.
Needless to say, a lot of ventilation is to be strongly recommended when incense is used. The smell of some incenses is incredibly beautiful but it is smoke and large amounts do affect the lungs, especially at close range. I wish it were not.