Mass Before 2nd Vatican Council

What was Mass like before the Second Vatican Council?


If you visit the Brompton Oratory in London, all Masses are pre-Vatican II. The priest has his back to the congregation. No one offers the sign of peace. Communion is on the tongue kneeling at the altar. Half the daily Masses are in Latin.

God bless,

Here’s an example of a particularly beautiful Solemn Mass:

You can find a lot more on youtube and on which also has tutorials and the like.

But this is not just Mass “before the Second Vatican Council,” but rather the traditional Mass which still takes place today, albeit not as commonly seen as the “New Mass” or “Ordinary Form.”

Do you guys prefer the old mass or the new one.

I absolutely prefer the traditional Mass.

  1. I don’t consider it “old” but rather eternal. I’m not wedded to the 1950s but to the eternal faith.

  2. I answered the question you asked, but I don’t think my preference actually matters. I have learned and judged that the traditional Mass is obviously superior as an expression of the Holy Sacrifice, so I try always to attend it and not the new Mass. Since it’s not just a preference, I think those who don’t prefer the traditional Mass (who are Latin Catholics) should learn and seek out experiences that will help them order their preferences to objective reality.

:rotfl: This is the Traditional Catholic section of Catholic Answers! That’s sort of like asking a group of vegans if they prefer vegetables or beef!

Maybe … but anyone can post on here …

Well of course they can. But you know what the overwhelming majority of responses will be!!! My previous post was not intended to be mean spirited…hence the jovial emoticon .

Actually, the Order of Mass at Brompton Oratory is the current Order of Mass, from the 1970 missal, in Latin with an eastward altar, so it is not a pre-Vii style… Attend an Extraordinary Form Mass, or watch any of the videos mentioned above, and you will see. There are more and more such celebrations in recent years.

Here’s an actual Mass from 1941.

I wonder about this second part… A High Mass is a more perfect expression than a Low Mass, does that mean that we as Catholics are obligated to seek out the High Mass at all times? I don’t see why that would be the case. Instead, I think it makes sense to have different levels of mass, why not think about the OF as another level of the Mass? While people are not required to attend any particular form of the Mass, I believe it is good to encourage everyone to become accustomed to the different forms, particularly the more complete forms, but that doesn’t make it wrong to attend a lower form, especially if a particular person finds it helpful in their attempt to grow spiritually.

Do you know where i can find a list of catholic churches that have the LATIN CATHOLIC mass so i could try to attend one in my area( if there is one)

Just so you know, being in Latin is not really the distinguishing characteristic of the EF… The OF can also be said in Latin. Sorry, this just a pet peeve of mine as I attended the OF in Latin for four years and it was beautifully and reverently celebrated, I think more people would be able to recognize the beauty of the OF if it were said in Latin more often, so I dislike it when I hear people talking about the two forms as though that is the defining difference.

Sorry i just dont know what to call. I called it the pre second vatican coucil mass and some people didnt like that name. SO what is the actual name of the mass.

I would suggest that if you visit a Pre-Vatican II Mass, now called the Extraordinary Form Mass or just EF Mass for short, that you try very hard to attend a Solemn Mass. These Masses have incense, chanting, deacons, etc. Many people go to attend an EF Mass for the first time and stumble onto a Low Mass which is all read, mostly spent kneeling, the priest speaks quietly, etc. and they often find it far too austere and not joyful and celebratory enough. That’s where criticisms come in where people say that liturgies should be exhibit joyfulness and exuberance and exultation - they base their entire experience of the EF Mass with that one Low Mass that they attended rather than going to a Solemn Mass.

Most parishes in America that offer the EF have a Solemn Mass on Sundays and a daily Low Mass during the weekdays. But the Solemn Mass is the standard even if many people prefer the contemplative, quiet nature of the Low Mass.

Check out this link to Una Voce.

Una Voce has chapters in many states, many countries, and in many languages. Don’t know where you are, but surf that site and you can find a local chapter that will give you mass times/locations of for the TLM/.

I love Latin mass because it is reverent, beautiful, peaceful and as someone said eternal. It epitomizes everything I love about the Church and being Catholic. NO masses are valid though, I don’t think anyone here would argue about that.

i went to una voce and found a chapter near me but i looked up the adress and it wasnot a church and the website did not give the name of the church.

The Traditional Latin Mass is simply one of the most beautiful events in the human experience. :slight_smile:



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