Just came back from Tridentine Mass

WELL! I just came back from my first ever Tridentine Mass! I was planning on attending at least once, but I wasn’t sure if I would be able to wake up on Sundays for 9am(I’m in college,lol, and I’d have to take the Metro(i’m in DC) there, then walk). So, because today is a Holy Day, St. Mary Mother of God church in DC holds a Tridentine Mass at 7:30pm. So, after a trip on the shuttle bus to Dupont Circle and a ride on the Metro to Judiciary Square, and a short walk to the church, I arrived. I walked in, and it was amazing. It’s not a huge cathedral, but it’s not a small chapel. It’s moderately big. There were statues EVERYWHERE(a wonderful change from my stagnant Georgetown U. Dahlgren Chapel), and votive candles. There also was an icon of Mary. Then of course was the sanctuary. AMAZING, WONDERFUL, BEAUTIFUL!!!(lol) The altar was ornate, and there were two large statues of angels on each side. Of course there was an altar rail.

I genuflected and entered the pew(i forgot to use holy water, b/c I was taking everything in,lol). I sat near the back, and asked someone if there was a Missal or something with the Mass translation. He got one for me. After half an hour, it started. There was the ring of a bell, and everyone stood, and it went from there.

I did get lost at the beginning. It was a low Mass as well. Then we had communion. We processed up to the altar rail and kneeled. Then the priest put it on my tongue, and i went back(this was also my first time receiving on the tongue as well). After the Mass, I walked around and looked at the statuary and icons.

All in all, I loved the Tridentine Mass. I’d like to attend either a Sung Low Mass, or a Solemn High Mass. I think i’d like it better than just the said Low Mass. I definitely prefer the Tridentine Mass now, especially compared to the mess at some Masses at Georgetown.

Funny you should mention this…I actually attended my first Latin High Mass on Sunday, and that was also my first experience at the Communion rail. Likewise the church was beautiful…huge, arching vaulted ceiling, statues, gold trim (dunno if real or not), paintings…etc. It definitely led one to think about God!

I have not yet attended a Tridentine Mass, although there is one in my metro area.

What is a Low Mass as opposed to a High Mass?

Anyway, glad you enjoyed your experience as much as I enjoyed mine! I don’t know how you feel, but I kinda still feel like I’m “flying” in a way.

Sorry if I’m mistaken, but didn’t you post a little while ago about St. Alphonsus in Baltimore? I know they offer the High Mass on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month, with the other Sundays being the Low Mass. When they do the High Mass, they either have the Schola sing the Mass (in that case, they sing Gregorian chants through the whole Mass - you don’t hear the priest), or they have the mixed choir with organ accompanyment, which sings some chants, but also provides the responses to the priest. Both are beautiful Masses, so if they don’t offer the High Mass at Mary Mother of God, it’d be worth the short trip North for you. As far as I know, though, they don’t offer the Solemn High Mass (at least not on a regular basis).

Also, a point of clarification. The Low Mass isn’t sung…the singing is what makes it High Mass (at least I think so, if I’m wrong, someone let me know).

[quote=JCPhoenix]Funny you should mention this…I actually attended my first Latin High Mass on Sunday, and that was also my first experience at the Communion rail. Likewise the church was beautiful…huge, arching vaulted ceiling, statues, gold trim (dunno if real or not), paintings…etc. It definitely led one to think about God!

I have not yet attended a Tridentine Mass, although there is one in my metro area.

What is a Low Mass as opposed to a High Mass?

Anyway, glad you enjoyed your experience as much as I enjoyed mine! I don’t know how you feel, but I kinda still feel like I’m “flying” in a way.
[/quote]

Low Mass- A Mass recited by a priest, 2 candles lit, vernacular hymns permitted, no incense.

Sung Mass- A Mass chanted by a priest with a Choir, 4-6 Candles lit, No vernacular hymns permitted, incense allowed with permission. More standing.

Solemn Mass- A Mass with a Priest, Deacon, subdeacon, again chanted. Deacon chants the Gospel directly north, subdeacon chants the epistle. Added Sign of peace amongst the clergy and altar servers, but does not extend to the congregation. More standing. No vernacular a hymns, Mass is chanted. 6 Candles lit. This is actually the norm for a Tridentine Mass.

[quote=mtr01]Sorry if I’m mistaken, but didn’t you post a little while ago about St. Alphonsus in Baltimore? I know they offer the High Mass on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month, with the other Sundays being the Low Mass. When they do the High Mass, they either have the Schola sing the Mass (in that case, they sing Gregorian chants through the whole Mass - you don’t hear the priest), or they have the mixed choir, which sings some chants, but also provides the responses to the priest. Both are beautiful Masses, so if they don’t offer the High Mass at Mary Mother of God, it’d be worth the short trip North for you. As far as I know, though, they don’t offer the Solemn High Mass (at least not on a regular basis).

Also, a point of clarification. The Low Mass isn’t sung…the singing is what makes it High Mass (at least I think so, if I’m wrong, someone let me know).
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Hi, yeah I did post about St. Alphonsus. Unfortunately, it’s a little too far out for me to reach, although I would love to visit. I’m in DC(Georgetown), and Baltimore is sort of out of the way for me. Oh well. As I said in my other post, I wanted to attend St. Mary Mother of God church because it’s closer, and I did tonight, and it was amazing.

Yep, I attended a Low Mass. I’m not sure if MMoG offers a High or Solemn High Mass, though, in the bulletin, it says that at 5pm on the second Sunday of every month, there’s a “Latin Solemn Mass in the Tridentine Rite”. So am I right in guessing that it’s the Solemn High Mass, or should I just call and make sure?

Although I’ve found the church I’d like to attend maybe once a month for the Tridentine Mass, I still would like to attend St. Alphonsus. Do you know how I could get there with public transportation(no car, I’m in college, so that’s the problem).

[quote=Iohannes]Low Mass- A Mass recited by a priest, 2 candles lit, vernacular hymns permitted, no incense.

Sung Mass- A Mass chanted by a priest with a Choir, 4-6 Candles lit, No vernacular hymns permitted, incense allowed with permission. More standing.

Solemn Mass- A Mass with a Priest, Deacon, subdeacon, again chanted. Deacon chants the Gospel directly north, subdeacon chants the epistle. Added Sign of peace amongst the clergy and altar servers, but does not extend to the congregation. More standing. No vernacular a hymns, Mass is chanted. 6 Candles lit. This is actually the norm for a Tridentine Mass.
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Iohannes:
Isn’t a Pontifical Mass the standard for the Traditional Tridentine Latin Mass?

[quote=katolik]Iohannes:
Isn’t a Pontifical Mass the standard for the Traditional Tridentine Latin Mass?
[/quote]

It still is, technically speaking, because the Bishop possesses the fullness of the priesthood. But after that, the Solemn High Mass is the preferred form of celebration.

I just watched the Tridentine Mass online at a link I found here.

It seems that most of the time the priest and altar servers are with their backs to the congregation.
I knew that, but seeing it is different.

Personally, I like the Novus Ordo in Latin a la EWTN. To me it combines the ‘best’ of both masses, while avoiding felt banners and guitars, and also avoiding having the congregation watch the backs of the priest and altar servers for most of the ceremony.

I wish having the Novus Ordo in Latin would become the norm here in the USA.

[quote=Ella]I just watched the Tridentine Mass online at a link I found here.

It seems that most of the time the priest and altar servers are with their backs to the congregation.
I knew that, but seeing it is different.

Personally, I like the Novus Ordo in Latin a la EWTN. To me it combines the ‘best’ of both masses, while avoiding felt banners and guitars, and also avoiding having the congregation watch the backs of the priest and altar servers for most of the ceremony.

I wish having the Novus Ordo in Latin would become the norm here in the USA.
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Ella,

The Priest does not have his back to the congregation to exclude them, but rather because he leads the people in offering the sacrifice of the Mass. He faces the same direction as the people: towards God, truly present on the altar and in the tabernacle and depicted on the crucifix.

I recommend assisting at a Traditional Mass in person, as I doubt that any video can truly capture its beauty (especially what is most likely a low quality Internet video). If I can be of any help, please message me.

God Bless,
Scott

“The Priest does not have his back to the congregation to exclude them, but rather because he leads the people in offering the sacrifice of the Mass. He faces the same direction as the people: towards God, truly present on the altar and in the tabernacle and depicted on the crucifix.”

I understand this; however, the fact remains that their backs are to the congregation, and the congregation does not say the responses or even hear the Eucharistic prayer. I believe the Novus Ordo changed this for the same reasons I myself experienced. I love the Latin…

[quote=Ella]“The Priest does not have his back to the congregation to exclude them, but rather because he leads the people in offering the sacrifice of the Mass. He faces the same direction as the people: towards God, truly present on the altar and in the tabernacle and depicted on the crucifix.”

I understand this; however, the fact remains that their backs are to the congregation, and the congregation does not say the responses or even hear the Eucharistic prayer. I believe the Novus Ordo changed this for the same reasons I myself experienced. I love the Latin…
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Well EWTN was prohibited from saying the NO Mass facing the tabernacle… It is a compromise with the bishop who doesn’t like the Mass facing the tabernacle for some reason…

A few corrections here.

First off, vernacular hymns are allowed in High and Solemn High Tridentine Masses. Unlike in the Missa Normativa, however, these hymns may not replace the Gregorian chants (i.e. Introit, Offertory, Communion, etc.). Before the Introit is chanted, the congregation and/or choir may sing a vernacular processional hymn. For the Offertory and Communion, vernacular hymns or motets may be sung after the Latin proper has been chanted. After (or even during) the Last Gospel, a vernacular recessional hymn may also be sung.

At a Low Mass, no part of the Mass itself may be sung. Vernacular hymns may be sung by the Congregation as a processional, recessional, and Offertory and Communion hymn. But the entire Mass itself must be said, and with no incense. We can’t “pick-and-choose” what we sing like in the Missa Normativa.

Unfortunately, often due to time and other constraints, this semi-abuse takes place at many Latin Mass communities. For example, at the parish I assist and serve at on Sundays, the Tridentine Mass is a High Mass, but the Gospel and the Dismissal are not sung. This is so we don’t “run into” the English Missa Normativa.

Isn’t a Pontifical Mass the standard for the Traditional Tridentine Latin Mass?

The standard Mass is a Solemn High Mass. Many of the Tridentine Pontifical rites are actually historical “add-ons.” Here’s what the Catholic Encyclopedia says:

[The] high Mass is the norm; it is only in the complete rite with deacon and subdeacon that the ceremonies can be understood. Thus, the rubrics of the Ordinary of the Mass always suppose that the Mass is high. Low Mass, said by a priest alone with one server, is a shortened and simplified form of the same thing. Its ritual can be explained only by a reference to high Mass. For instance, the celebrant goes over to the north side of the altar to read the Gospel, because that is the side to which the deacon goes in procession at high Mass; he turns round always by the right, because at high Mass he should not turn his back to the deacon and so on. A sung Mass (missa Cantata) is a modern compromise. It is really a low Mass, since the essence of high Mass is not the music but the deacon and subdeacon. Only in churches which have no ordained person except one priest, and in which high Mass is thus impossible, is it allowed to celebrate the Mass (on Sundays and feasts) with most of the adornment borrowed from high Mass, with singing and (generally) with incense. The Sacred Congregation of Rites has on several occasions (9 June, 1884; 7 December, 1888) forbidden the use of incense at a Missa Cantata; nevertheless, exceptions have been made for several dioceses, and the custom of using it is generally tolerated (Le Vavasseur, op. cit., I, 514-5). In this case, too, the celebrant takes the part of deacon and subdeacon; there is no kiss of peace.

The ritual of the Mass is further affected by the dignity of the celebrant, whether bishop or only priest. There is something to be said for taking the pontifical Mass as the standard, and explaining that of the simple priest as a modified form, just as low Mass is a modified form of high Mass. On the other hand historically the case is not parallel throughout; some of the more elaborate pontifical ceremony is an after-thought, an adornment added later. Here it need only be said that the main difference of the pontifical Mass (apart from some special vestments) is that the bishop remains at his throne (except for the preparatory prayers at the altar steps and the incensing of the altar) till the Offertory; so in this case the change from the Mass of the Catechumens to that of the Faithful is still clearly marked. He also does not put on the maniple till after the preparatory prayers, again an archaic touch that marks them as being outside the original service. At low Mass the bishop’s rank is marked only by a few unimportant details and by the later assumption of the maniple. Certain prelates, not bishops, use some pontifical ceremonies at Mass. The pope again has certain special ceremonies in his Mass, of which some represent remnants of older customs, Of these we note especially that he makes his Communion seated on the throne and drinks the consecrated wine through a little tube called fistula.

Some of the stuff in this article is outdated. For example, under the 1962 Missal incense can be used even at High Mass, without dispensation from the bishop.

I believe the Novus Ordo changed this for the same reasons I myself experienced. I love the Latin…

Actually, “facing the altar” is still the normative way of saying Mass, even under the Missa Normativa. It hasn’t become the most “usual” form of celebration, but it’s still the norm, just as Latin is.

The Mass can be said facing the altar, with an aloud Eucharistic prayer. Really, there’s no need for the Congregation to hear each and every word clearly. The prayer is to God, and congregants should each have at least one Missal that’s personally theirs.

I finally made it to a Tridentine Mass also and it happened to be the Solemn High Mass at St. Mary’s in Washington,DC. It was awesome with Gregorian chant, incense, bells and kneeling for Communion at the altar rail. The Mass was very well attended, with many college age kids, young families. The church was so quiet you could hear a pin drop. Many of the women wore veils. After Mass just about everyone knelt down and stayed for private prayer. Too bad this church is six hours from my home(but only an hour by air).

[quote=DominvsVobiscvm]A few corrections here.

First off, vernacular hymns are allowed in High and Solemn High Tridentine Masses. . . . For the Offertory and Communion, vernacular hymns or motets may be sung after the Latin proper has been chanted.
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Are you sure about that? Vernacular hymns can, of course, be sung during the processional and recessional (which are not part of the Mass, per se), but I was under the impression that the singing of vernacular hymns during Mass was forbidden. Also, vernacular hymns may be sung immediately following the sermon (which, again, is not technically part of the Mass).

[quote=DominvsVobiscvm]Some of the stuff in this article is outdated. For example, under the 1962 Missal incense can be used even at High Mass, without dispensation from the bishop.
[/quote]

Incense is allowed at a sung Mass in the United States and in Australia (and perhaps elsewhere) under an indult, so you’re right, dispensation from the Bishop is not needed. I believe that the universal law still forbids incense at sung Masses, however.

Scott

All correct thus far from DominusVobiscum (as opposed to Dominic, go frisk 'em) but Solemn Mass also requires an EmCee.

In terms of the vernacular hymns, look into your old hand Missal and you will probably see English renditions of Latin Hymns (unfortunately abysmally translated so they will fit the melody line of the Latin hymn). This is what usually constituted “Vernacular Hymnody.” It’s not like they were singing Go Tell it on the Mountain or something like that. :-))) There are some exceptions to that, however. For example, “Holy God, We Praise Thy Name” s actually the official English rendering of the Te Deum.

– Fr. L.

I have relatives that are Tridentines. Also, went to a shrine with a group of friends of same group. Some adults and altar boys were very disrepectful in the English Mass as they were preparing to set up for their celebration. I find that Tridentines have an inordinate fear of hell and resist change. There is updated natural family planning with Church approval.The families were huge (16 in one family), home schooled, dressed like the 30’s and very critical of women in jeans at a fast food place, get upset over uncovered heads in church. I was not impressed positively to be sure. This was not a one time event of being with Tridentines. There is another church near me that seems to have broken off from LeFeubre’s (SP?) group. Can anyone tell me if these groups are in schism? I got multiple answers from clergy and laity.
One sister told me that they have their own private bishop.How could this be? I am sure their prayers are honored and God understands them and accepts these people, but I find it difficult to relate. I am a pre- Vatican II gray- haired person of the 21st century who understands Latin and prefers the new format of Mass.

Are you sure about that?

Absolutely, 100% positive. See Father’s post. Again, I’m a former postulant of Chicago’s Cantian Society. Their Masses were so high they burned! I learned so much about the rubrics of the Mass, and I still know so little!

Incense is allowed at a sung Mass in the United States and in Australia (and perhaps elsewhere) under an indult, so you’re right, dispensation from the Bishop is not needed. I believe that the universal law still forbids incense at sung Masses, however.

There actually is no Indult. Missals from 1958 will tell you there is, but this requirement was dispensed in 1962 (maybe before). Any High Mass can have incense.

Unfortunate, but true. The Tridentine Mass seems to attract Kooks, heretics and lunatics. However, there is a very good argument that the Novus Ordo does as well, but they are more blended in by the sheer volume of attendees.

In my case, when we began the 1962 Mass . . . hmmm . … want to say about 8 years ago . . . it was FULL of Feeny-ites, Baysiders, etc etc. Fortuantely,t hrough preaching, we got the heretics out. It’s unfortuante but true that many of those who claim to be Orthodox are heretics to the Nth degree. I even had people say to me, “Finally, a VALID Mass.” I barred them from Holy Communion.

But again, they are everywhere and they are Legion, but blend in more by the simple law of “volume versus concentration.”

– Fr. L.

YIKES!

I just reread that poting and you mention that they had their “own private bishop.”

Either run, run fast and don’t look back or . . . look further into it. It COULD be legit if it is and investiture of some kind.

Just remember, you can’t be “traditional” and separate from Rom. That’s the mother of all oxymorons. Those who have separated because they are nothing but fundamentalist protestants who like the trappings of smells and bells, have seaparated from Tradition itself if they reject Rome.

Check it out. Chances are, they are on the outs. In that case, pray for their return to the fold and work on your sister.

– Fr. L.

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