Using Latin in Mass

Hello All,

Now I’m in RCIA, so bare with me. I go to a very traditional parish, and during High Mass all of the responses and songs are in latin. I love this and wouldn’t have it any other way, but I was wondering if this is just a characteristic or requirement of High Mass or does it depend on the parish?

I haven’t been to a Low Mass at this church (I’m relatively new to the parish), so I’m not familiar with whether or not they use latin in Low Mass.

[quote=St.Curious]Hello All,

Now I’m in RCIA, so bare with me. I go to a very traditional parish, and during High Mass all of the responses and songs are in latin. I love this and wouldn’t have it any other way, but I was wondering if this is just a characteristic or requirement of High Mass or does it depend on the parish?

I haven’t been to a Low Mass at this church (I’m relatively new to the parish), so I’m not familiar with whether or not they use latin in Low Mass.
[/quote]

I believe that there is technically no longer a distinction between Low Mass and High Mass in the 1970 Missal which is used in a majority of parishes. But some use the terms anyway to distinguish between the types of Masses they offer. If this is what your parish uses then there is no requirement that Latin be used. Although congratulations for finding such a parish. They are rare.

If by Low Mass and High Mass and “traditional parish” you mean that your parish offers the Tridentine Mass (1962 Missal) then, yes, Latin must be used.

Either way it sounds like you have a great parish.

God bless,

James

Hi James,

Thanks for your input. The parish I go to does not offer the Tridentine Mass, but there is one near by that does.

I believe what the differences are is a use of incense, use of the high alter, and latin responses. I will inquire more though.

After seeing the many, many, many liturgical abuses in the Diocese of Richmond (virginia) I’m very happy to find a church that is very traditional and executes a liturgically sound Mass. I was told about it by the Benedictine Monks at the Mary Mother of the Church Abbey in Richmond, Va.

[quote=St.Curious]Hi James,

Thanks for your input. The parish I go to does not offer the Tridentine Mass, but there is one near by that does.

I believe what the differences are is a use of incense, use of the high alter, and latin responses. I will inquire more though.

After seeing the many, many, many liturgical abuses in the Diocese of Richmond (virginia) I’m very happy to find a church that is very traditional and executes a liturgically sound Mass. I was told about it by the Benedictine Monks at the Mary Mother of the Church Abbey in Richmond, Va.
[/quote]

There is no high/low Mass in the Pauline ("new’) rite. I’m not sure what you mean by a “high altar” when it comes to the Pauline Mass. There should be one altar of sacrifice.

The use of Latin and incense is optional during the Pauline Mass.

[quote=Chalice]There is no high/low Mass in the Pauline ("new’) rite. I’m not sure what you mean by a “high altar” when it comes to the Pauline Mass. There should be one altar of sacrifice.

The use of Latin and incense is optional during the Pauline Mass.
[/quote]

If it’s an older church, there could very well be two altars, the old High Altar and the free-standing altar which is usually placed in the center of the sanctuary and farther forward. Either one can be used to say the new Mass.

[quote=Chalice]There is no high/low Mass in the Pauline ("new’) rite. I’m not sure what you mean by a “high altar” when it comes to the Pauline Mass. There should be one altar of sacrifice.

The use of Latin and incense is optional during the Pauline Mass.
[/quote]

Alot of parishes that were never “wreckovated” eventually ended up with 2 altars. They have beautiful high altars that are never used. Instead a second altar is installed in front of it so that the priest can celebrate Mass facing the people and not “with his back to the people”.

The parish I attend is one such parish. It still has it’s beautiful high altar which is used for the Tridentine Mass. But, years ago another altar was added for the Novus Ordo. I don’t care for this altar. It is wooden instead of stone. It just doesn’t seem to fit in with the church. It is moved during the TLM.

James

Yes, my church is like James. It has two alters, one on the wall that contains the tabernacle. The other is a free-standing stone alter in the center of the sactuary area so that the Priest to can face the congregation while delivering the Mass.

[quote=Dr. Bombay]If it’s an older church, there could very well be two altars, the old High Altar and the free-standing altar which is usually placed in the center of the sanctuary and farther forward. Either one can be used to say the new Mass.
[/quote]

Nope.

There is to be ONE altar of sacrifice in Latin Rite churches. That means either the Mass is celebrated on an altar affixed to the back wall, OR on an altar the celebrant stands behind.

It is wrong to have both, although I’m sure some people feel this is “better” than following what the Church directs.

In most cases I’m sure the old “high altar” is viewed as a fancy creedence table so it wouldn’t have to be removed, which would make a lot of sense, especially for cash strapped parishes.

[quote=Chalice]Nope.

There is to be ONE altar of sacrifice in Latin Rite churches. That means either the Mass is celebrated on an altar affixed to the back wall, OR on an altar the celebrant stands behind.

It is wrong to have both, although I’m sure some people feel this is “better” than following what the Church directs.

[/quote]

What’s your source for this?

God bless,
James

[quote=James0235]What’s your source for this?

God bless,
James
[/quote]

To answer my own question the only thing I am aware of that mentions this is the GIRM:

  1. In building new churches, it is preferable to erect a single altar which in the gathering of the faithful will signify the one Christ and the one Eucharist of the Church.

In already existing churches, however, when the old altar is positioned so that it makes the people’s participation difficult but cannot be moved without damage to its artistic value, another fixed altar, of artistic merit and duly dedicated, should be erected and sacred rites celebrated on it alone. In order not to distract the attention of the faithful from the new altar, the old altar should not be decorated in any special way.

James

[quote=Chalice]Nope.

There is to be ONE altar of sacrifice in Latin Rite churches. That means either the Mass is celebrated on an altar affixed to the back wall, OR on an altar the celebrant stands behind.

It is wrong to have both, although I’m sure some people feel this is “better” than following what the Church directs.

In most cases I’m sure the old “high altar” is viewed as a fancy creedence table so it wouldn’t have to be removed, which would make a lot of sense, especially for cash strapped parishes.
[/quote]

Bull. You can’t quote one Church document that states it is “wrong” to have both.

You missed your calling. You would’ve fit right in with the vandals who set jackhammers to High Altars and Communion Rails back in the 70s.

I know of churches with three altars!!!

[quote=Iohannes]I know of churches with three altars!!!
[/quote]

I go to a church that has 4 - high altar used for TLM, free-standing altar used for NO, and 2 side altars.

James

I went to St. Mary’s cathedral last sunday, and was very surprised to see two side altars.

To he who is complaining that only one altar can exist in a church at a time, then, i think you may be mistaken. Cardnial Pell is one of the most conservative bishops, and he hasn’t removed the extra altars yet.

The church I attend has one High Altar, on which the TLM is celebrated, one free-standing altar for the new Mass and 8 side altars, if I counted correctly. :smiley:

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