Gloria skipped in mass?

Is the Gloria to be skipped during mass during ordinary times. St. Paul’s church here in town skipped the Gloria today and I also noticed that the priest substituted different words while reading the Eucharistic prayers. He was reading Eucharistic prayer II.

I was probably the only one to notice this because I was following along in the missalette and they recently closed my church St. Mary’s and merged with St. Bernard’s. So, I was probably more astute to the variances. I don’t remember exactly the words he used but it caught my attention mainly because he paused a bit to make the change.

Are these considered liturgical abuses?

What exactly did he change it to… In any case if he did change it then it may be litrugical abuse… a priest is not allowed to change this.

and the Gloria should be sung every Sunday except during Lent and Advent…

As Sancte Joseph said, the Gloria should be sung (or at least recited) on each Sunday except during Advent and Lent. Is there any chance that the celebrant could have made an innocent mistake? I myself know of one priest who is quite old and hasn’t been very well in recent years - I don’t recall that he ever forgot about the Gloria, but he often gets confused during Mass, and if he ever forgets anything, it is plainly obvious that it wasn’t intentional. So, ordinarily it would be an abuse to omit the Gloria, but just consider that it may have been a genuine mistake.

Regarding the Eucharistic Prayer, Redemptionis Sacramentum says:

[51.] Only those Eucharistic Prayers are to be used which are found in the Roman Missal or are legitimately approved by the Apostolic See, and according to the manner and the terms set forth by it. “It is not to be tolerated that some Priests take upon themselves the right to compose their own Eucharistic Prayers” or to change the same texts approved by the Church, or to introduce others composed by private individuals.

It sounds like your priest composed his own Eucharistic Prayer. Was he trying to make the language more “politically correct” or was there extensive ad-libbing? Either way, yes, it is forbidden to change the words of the Mass texts:

[59.] The reprobated practice by which Priests, Deacons or the faithful here and there alter or vary at will the texts of the Sacred Liturgy that they are charged to pronounce, must cease. For in doing thus, they render the celebration of the Sacred Liturgy unstable, and not infrequently distort the authentic meaning of the Liturgy.

  • The faithful have a right to have the liturgy celebrated according to the laws, texts and rubrics set forth by the Church. A priest who changes the Mass on his own initiative denies the faithful this right. So, again, unless your priest is perhaps unwell, lost his place in the E.P. and panicked leading to short-term ad-libbing (which I have seen happen), a grave abuse did indeed occur.

What makes you say that it’s a “grave” abuse as opposed to a minor abuse? It’s not listed among grave abuses in ¶ 173 of RS.

It is listed among grave abuses in paragraph 173 of RS. It says:

[173.] Although the gravity of a matter is to be judged in accordance with the common teaching of the Church and the norms established by her, objectively to be considered among grave matters is anything that puts at risk the validity and dignity of the Most Holy Eucharist: namely, anything that contravenes what is set out above in nn. 48-52, 56, 76-77, 79, 91-92, 94, 96, 101-102, 104, 106, 109, 111, 115, 117, 126, 131-133, 138, 153 and 168. Moreover, attention should be given to the other prescriptions of the Code of Canon Law, and especially what is laid down by canons 1364, 1369, 1373, 1376, 1380, 1384, 1385, 1386, and 1398.

[Emphasis mine]

I quoted paragraph 51 which is included in this list of grave matters. At any rate paragraph 173 says that “anything that puts at risk the validity and dignity of the Most Holy Eucharist” is a grave matter, so given that paragraph 59 says that changing the prescribed texts at will “render[s] the celebration of the Sacred Liturgy unstable, and not infrequently distort the authentic meaning of the Liturgy”, it could be described as a grave matter even if it were not referenced on the list in paragraph 173.

Sorry, looking back I realize I misunderstood you. I thought you were just talking about omitting the Gloria, which looks to me like it would be an abuse but would not fall under ¶ 51 since it is not part of the Eucharistic Prayer. I agree with you that changing the words of the EP would be a grave abuse.

Yes, and Yes.

It’s funny, we skipped the Gloria too this past Sunday. But I’m almost positive it was because the priest got confused. I think there was some mix up with him and the organist/cantor. Luckily there was no changing of anything else.

Grave abuse for the Eucharistic Prayer and an illicit action in the Sacred Liturgy for the Gloria. I personally believe abuses to only take place when the action is done with intention. Just MHO since we are not sure if the Priest was confused or what.

Now, skipping the Gloria accidentally one Sunday is a lot smaller of a deal IMHO than having the server come up to you with the Roman Missal after the First Reading for the Easter Vigil and the Priest shooing him away. Then again, this Priest was VERY sick and VERY sleepy. I’m just glad he didn’t mess up during the Consecration… :smiley:


Interesting that this is mentioned. There is one priest who helps out at our parish (because it’s large and we have only one priest) who forgets the Gloria every now and again. I think it’s not deliberate but rather that he is becoming forgetful in other matters, so I have heard. I am keeping him specially in my prayers.

I happen to go to the vigil mass last night and the same priest skipped the Gloria. I don’t think he forgot it this time and he definitely substituted or changed some of the words in the Eucharistic prayers. Now, my sister is registered in this parish and attends on a regular basis. I am contemplating registering because my parish was recently merged with another here in town. I was thinking of registering at St. Paul’s because it is only about a mile from home.

Anyway I emailed my sister and asked her about this to see if this was a common occurrence. The priest in question happens to be the pastor. Here is her reply

*Fr. Ralph does at times add some words that he should not. He is the only one who does so. When Fr. Matt or Fr. Berardi say mass they do not. The Gloria as far as I know can be skipped if the priest decides on a low mass. Because of the heat, he may have decided to skip it. Again, he is the only one who does so. Last week, Fr. Matt said the gloria and I know that Fr. Berardi never skps it.

I’m sorry. Sometimes, things go this way as Fr. Ralph forgets things all the time. I am not sure if this is why we were sent an associate or not. It has been noticed by others so hang in there. I’m sure it will get better.*

I understand a priest who might have forgetful spells. I have them myself but then shouldn’t the organist jump in and play the Gloria, if her/she is paying attention? :slight_smile:

When our former pastor’s Alzheimer’s progressed to the point where he often forgot where he was in the Mass the bishop sent us a new pastor and kept Fr. J. here as assistant (not a respectful thing to do IMHO, and very resented by Fr. J.).

Were you singing the Mass last night? We rarely sing the Mass on Saturday evening and, if we’re not singing it, our pastor almost always skips the Gloria at Sunday Mass. It’s not right and neither is failing to genuflect at Consecration and before Communion and giving Communion to the EMHCs and the altar servers before he receives, both of which he also does.

He gets angry if we quote documents at him so I’ve opted to close my eyes and ignore what he does and concentrate on the words of the Mass.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit