Latin Mass

Is it proper and more traditional to not say/sing the responses and not sing the entire Pater Noster at the TLM. Would would say 75% of the ones that I’ve been to, no one makes responses and sings the Pater Noster. However, sometimes some people try to sing the responses and sing the Pater Noster with the priest. Which is more proper and traditional? I’m personally not a fan of the dialogue masses. Is there a difference between the FSSP and ICKSP approach?

I would guess that the more traditional method would be for the entire mass to be spoken by the priest(s) and servers, and not by the congregation, except for “et cum spiritu tuo”, etc. That’s how it’s printed in my 1930’s vintage missal, anyway.

I go to an FSSP service. The High Mass is dialog style and the Low Mass is not, but I’ve only been a couple of times (for all I know dialog masses only apply to the High Mass). Personally, I think the congregation reading along in Latin sounds more disorganized than typical prayers in the vernacular. But it’s no big deal to me.

Our Celebration of the Extraordinary Rite of the Mass is beautifully sung by the Choir.

I sing along with them, but more to myself than out loud. I’ve noticed that other ‘regulars’ sing to themselves also.

Maybe it’s a genetic memory from my Ordinary Rite of the Mass days, but I do love the Chant!!

In the past when I’ve attended the indult Latin Mass, it was mostly pretty quiet except for the choir. Now that the Motu Proprio has been announced, I think people are getting excited and I’m hearing many verbal responses and singing along with the choir … It seems solemn and joyful and grateful, with people putting in a true effort to correctly pronounce the words.

~~ the phoenix

According to my St. Joseph’s Pocket Missal, there are three degrees of participation:

1st Degree - "The Faithful recite the simple responses to the Priest: Amen, Et cum spiritu tuo, Deo Gratias,Gloria tibi Dominie, Laus tibi Christe, Habemus ad Dominium, Dignum et justum est, and sed libera nos a malo.

2nd Degree- The faithful now recite all the responses said by the server as well as the triple “Domine non sum dignus” at the Communion the people.

3rd Degre - The faithful recite with the Priest the Gloria, Creed, Sanctus-Benedictus and Agnus Dei."

At the Low Mass it is usually just the 1st Degree participation. At the High Mass it is the 2nd Degree. And for a Solemn High Mass, I don’t know for sure, but I would assume it is the 3rd Degree participation.


St. Pius X was the Pope who first began encouraging the people to chant various parts. At the indult Mass in my old diocese, only the priest, servers, or choir made any sound. Personally, I prefer that way, but if a great saint and Pope though the other was better, who am I to argue?

This Missal directs that the Pater noster is said by the Priest alone, save for the “sed libera nos a malo”.

Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia on the Web claims that Contemporary Christian Worship finds its expression in may forms such as house churches, renewed traditional churches and new church movements like Pentecostal, Charismatic, and Evangelical.

That probably explains why a Charismatic like myself feels at home at the Traditional Latin Mass. In contemporary terms, both Traditional and Charismatic are “expressive worship”. Wikipedia goes on to say that music is the central component to this movement, so the Gregorian Chants are probably central.

During my real life experiences at a local Traditional Catholic Church the congregation responds in Latin at most of the “S” passages in the 1962 Booklet Missal. So, that backs up the theory that Contemporary Worship is expressive.


If you mean older, then it is “Sed libera nos a malo”. The 50’s and 60s saw the communal singing of the entire *Pater *being commended in official documents.

AJV mentioned the 50’s and 60’s. I was there during the late 40’s and 50’s, and it was silent during the Latin Mass with older women holding Rosary Beads. In those days I only had teenage friends, and remember that they used to sing the Gregorian Chants in a smart-alecky way when we were hanging around together. The evening softball games were the big attraction at church. Those days were nothing like our contemporary expressive worship that we had today during the Tridentine High Mass. So, there is no comparison.

We have modern expressive worship now, and it seems to be more like Peter‘s sermon at Pentecost?.

“But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words: For these are not drunken , as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day. But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel. And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:” (Acts 2:14-18)

Forgetting about the Charismatics, all you have to do is ask any older person about the crazy dreams that they are having nowadays. Isn’t that what the Prophet Joel prophesized?

The author of Acts, probably Luke, left out the next passage in Joel’s prophesy,

“And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those last days will I pour out my spirit.” (Joel 2:29)


I just returned from having a talk with my 85 year old mother about this topic. She is sharper than many 50 year olds who I know, and when she talks it’s a clear as a bell.

When she was a teenager during the 1930’s they had High Mass every Sunday, and the congregation sang back and forth with the priest in Latin all during the mass. Here is the part that seems to be new information: She was a member of the church choir, but she only sang in the English Language. There were also English Language songs during the mass, weddings, and other church activities.

According to her, during the 1920’s many of her Catholic relatives started living together without being married. Many of her first cousins we born out of wedlock, but considered themselves as Catholics.

That coincides with my present mother and father in law. When I petitioned for my wife to come to the United States from the Philippines we found out that her parents had been living together out of wedlock for all those years. Both are practicing Catholics and go to church quite often.

The point that I’m trying to bring up is that the late 1800’s may be the latest period that traditionalist can anchor to if they don’t want to be part of the contemporary expressive worship that is lead by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

In any case, I would forget about the 1920’s, 1950’s, 1960’s and for sure the 1970’s.

Hope this helps;


Need a history lesson here…

Who is (was) Bugnini and what did he do?

Being silent is probably more “traditional” in that it was the more common practice prior to the council, but I must admit that I like the idea of the congregation being encouraged to learn the proper responses and use them at mass. People shouldn’t be forced to say the responses and made to feel like they aren’t participating if they don’t, but many people, including Popes, have stressed the importance of us knowing and using the responses - and the dialogue mass seems to me to be very much in the genuine spirit of Vatican II (not to be confused with that other “spirit of Vatican II”:p).

I’ve heard that it was a real mark of pride for an altar boy to be able to properly pronounce the longer and more complicated responses - perhaps it would be a good thing if all children were positively encouraged to know and say the prayers that pertain to them. It would certainly foster a greater appriciation for the use of Latin, IMO.

Bugnini was a Priest (later Archbishop) who headed reforms of the liturgy (both the Mass and the Breviary) following the second Vatican Council. He has been blamed for a lot of the problems and some say he was a freemason.

Wikipedia has an article on him.

I would say the safest thing is to go ahead and sing anything the choir sings (so long as you can do it well enough not to stick out), but don’t try to say everything the servers say. While a dialog Mass would allow that, some of the things they say (like, and perhaps only, the prayers at the foot of the altar) are ministerial, not congregational.

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