Is it different at all? I know they don’t sing the gloria, but is that it? Just wondering since Advent is only like two weeks away.
If you’re asking about the structure of the Mass, it’s the same. No Gloria, like you said, but that’s pretty much it. The liturgical color is purple, with rose as an option on the third Sunday of Advent.
Ok good, so I won’t be lost lol and what about the Christmas/Christmas Eve mass? I’ve heard it’s supposed to be very special or something. xP
Theoretically, besides the color change in vestments, and the proclamation of the birth of Christ (similar to the exultet), they are the same. Many parishes add many extra things, musiclly, in the sancuray, both decorations and ministers. It really depends.
In my parish, we have a brass quintet w/ timpani, in addition to our normal choir and organ. We also have about 8 extra servers, bringing the grand total to somewhere near 20. We also usually have two transititonal (seminarian) deacons, the bishop, and many concelebrants, since we are the Cathedral Parish.
That’s how it is for my parish. Any others wish to explain?
It’s a very important solemnity and the “feel” will, I hope, be very special – and most likely there’ll be incense, lots of decorations, great music, and all – but liturgically Christmas is not “unique” in the way some of the Holy Week liturgies are. Introduction, penitential rite, readings, Gospel, Liturgy of the Eucharist, just as you would expect. The Gloria comes back, but the responses are all the same. Sometimes they’ll use the Apostle’s Creed instead of the Nicene Creed for the sake of the people who don’t remember it very well (Christmas draws a lot of people who rarely go to Mass otherwise), but that’s an issue of discretion.
PS, welcome to the Church!
Nothing too specific as said by previous posters. No Gloria at Sunday and ferial Masses, but can still be used on solemnities and feasts, e.g. Immaculate Conception. Ferial weekday Masses have their own propers, unlike those in Ordinary Time. From 17th December until end of Advent any obligatory memorial is ex officio reduced to the rank of optional memorial. The O Antiphons are used as the antiphons for the Magnificat canticle at Vespers from 17th to 23rd December.
Yes it is a very special evening/night. Lots of options are available here.
First Vespers of Christmas and this should be preferably solemnly sung.
There’s the Mass of the Vigil of the Nativity - celebrated late afternoon/early evening - can be celebrated before or after First Vespers - has its own propers and readings - satisfies the obligation.
Office of Readings for Christmas Day can be solemnly sung on night of 24th December - unfortunately doesn’t happen often - can be combined with Midnight Mass.
Midnight Mass - must be, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful liturgies of the year - our church is lit by candles only until we sing the Gloria then all the lights are put on and the church bells are rung while we sing the Gloria.
There’s the singing of the Proclamation of Christ’s birth.
The music is often better than most of the rest of the year. Lots of incense used.
On their own or as part of one of the above liturgies the Christmas Tree in church can be blessed. The figure of the Infant Jesus is placed in the Manger scene and is blessed.
A wonderful evening in my opinion.
At the Christmas Vigil Mass and at all 3 Christmas Day Masses, all genuflect during the Creed at the words, “By the power of the Holy Spirit…and became man.” If the Proclamation of the Birth of Christ is sung, there is a special introduction that takes place after the greeting. The Proclamation is then sung. The penitential rite is omitted and the Gloria then follows. If the Office of Readings is celebrated as an extended Vigil before Midnight Mass, it may be joined to Mass: the Office begins and proceeds in the usual way, canticles may be added after the 2nd reading’s Responsory, the Proclamation may be sung after the Responsory after the 2nd reading (or after the added canticles, if any), and the Gloria then follows. Mass would then proceed in the usual way. There will most likely be incense. In some places, it is customary to have torch bearers during the consecration.
The Order for the Blessing of a Christmas Tree may be used on the 24th; it may also be joined with Morning or Evening Prayer. The Order for the Blessing of a Manger or Nativity Scene may be used this day also, and may be joined with another liturgical celebration or carol service.
To Stephraim, Matthew Holford, Seatuck, Mark Thompson, and TheMC, Thanks to all of you for replying
Our abbey combines Vigils (Office of Readings) with the midnight Mass. Since they do the Monastic Office schema A, there are 6 psalms, two long readings (one Gospel and one patristic), prolix responsories, three canticles (divided into 3 nocturns), Gospel reading, and Te Decet Laus and Te Deum, it is very very long (an hour and a half). After that, there’s a break of 30 min and Midnight Mass starts, which also lasts an hour and a half. So it’s basically a 3 and a half hour outing that starts at 10 pm (not including the half-hour drive each way to get there and back!)
I can see what you are saying about time. Out of interest (tell me if I’m being too personal) which abbey? Why the half-hour break I thought (I may misunderstand) I thought the Vigil and Midnight Mass had to be one liturgy. I am not sure what prolix responsories are. I thought Te Deum was omitted and replaced by Gloria in excelsis and the Mass continued from there.
They don’t have to be combined into a single liturgy. They may be, and then what you have said about the Gloria and Te Deum is true. If separated, they are done as posted above.