Low EF Mass servers


Are altar servers an absolute necessity in the EF Low Mass?


No, I offer them privately all the time.



No, but I believe that they’re preferred, especially for making the responses throughout Mass.


There are a certain number required for each form of the EF, however private mass can be done with only one server or layperson to respond, or even no one if needed.


All masses are high; there is no one lower than the other


How do you mean?


An amusing comment. :slight_smile:
Doesn’t sound like you’re familiar with the different levels of solemnity with which the Extraordinary Form of the mass can be offered.


Tha would imply that one form of mass is better than the other; ie “more solemn” whihc is rather subjective.


What is the problem with observing the fact that some forms of the mass are more solemn than others?

I’m always puzzled by this cultural notion that it is somehow offensive or wrong to observe the excellence of one thing in comparison to another. “All people are equal.” Actually, no, we come with all sorts of different characteristics: tall, short, sanguine, phlegmatic, intelligent, simple. We are not equal in all of our attributes, but we are equal in the sense that we share the same human nature, and the same dignity which comes from the fact that we were made in the image and likeness of God.

In the same way, different forms of the mass have different attributes, and some of them can certainly be said to be more conducive to prayer or more uplifting to the soul, in general. Recognizing the excellence of something does not mean one is denigrating something else, or denigrating the people who may like something else.


Actually, it’s not a value judgment, it’s just the terminology that was always used for the older form of the Mass.

Solemn Mass, or High Mass: Priest, deacon, subdeacon, mostly chanted, incense used.

Low Mass: Priest only, all recited. Very simple.

In between was the Missa Cantata, which was basically Low Mass with singing, plus incense.

It’s not to imply that one Mass is better than another, simply that there are varying degrees of ceremony used.



Actually to be precise- some masses are “higher” and “more solemn” than the others; Pontifical Masses (Masses with Bishop(s)) are considered to be highest and most true form of Mass, because they reflect fullness of Church in her ministry. It is literally true form of Mass. It does not mean sacrifice differs in any way from other Masses, but in what they reflect.

However thing discussed there is terminology. “Solemn” Mass is “solemn” because of ceremony being more “solemn”.


If it is the priest only, a more proper phrase would be missa sine populo.


That’s not at all what I’m talking about.

If it is only a priest offering Mass with no singing in front of a congregation, this obviously wouldn’t be a “Missa sine populo,” since that means “Mass without people.”


Okay, Missa sine musica…


Actually, it was called a “Missa Lecta” in Latin, a “Read Mass.” But in English we commonly call it Low Mass.


How many are in your parish? How long have you been a priest?


24 years, in the military and it varies from base to base. How about yourself? The largest denomination on paper in the service is listed as “non-denominational” followed by Baptists and in thrid place are Catholics. The last of which have only 25% at the most attend Mass.

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