Aquinas and More. Good Faith. Guaranteed.

Things You Need to Celebrate a Mass in the Extraordinary Form

by Ian on September 21, 2007

Now that Summorum Pontificum has been promulgated and you can celebrate a Mass using the missal of Blessed John XXIII you may be wondering what exactly you will need to properly celebrate the Mass.

Here is a complete list of items you will need to properly stock your sacristy. It's a long article so I will summarize it here.

First of all, you are going to need an altar missal for the older form of the Mass. This missal is actually the 1960 version with a sticker to insert the change made to the Canon in 1962 where St. Joseph's name was added.

Second, you are going to need to augment your vestment wardrobe with maniples and an amice and dalmatics if you have a deacon. You are also going to need to get rose and black vestments if you plan on celebrating the Extraordinary Form on Guadete or Laetare Sundays or All Souls' Day. Please note that many vestment sets come with matching chalice veils and maniples so you won't have to buy them separately.

For the altar you are going to need to get two additional altar cloths as the extraordinary form requires that the altar be covered with three cloths. You are also going to need to get chalice veils and burses in matching liturgical colors.

Other sanctuary appointments that you will need include Sanctus Bells, a censer (thurible) and boat.

If your parish doesn't already have servers vested in cassocks and surplices, you are going to need some of those as well (the cassocks and surplices, not the servers).

Finally, you are going to need patens for Holy Communion.

That about covers the physical items you will need. Apart from these you are also going to need:

  • to understand and be able to correctly follow the rubrics of the 1962 Missale Romanum.
  • to be able to properly pronounce Latin and have some understanding of what you are saying. For more on this I suggest reading Fr. Z's blog.
  • a group of parishioners interested in assisting at a Tridentine Mass. Some bishops are trying to say that there must be 20-50 people who have been requesting the Extraordinary Form for a long period of time but there isn't anything in the actual document that points to such a requirement.
  • a bishop open to the celebration of the 1962 Missal is also a very big plus even though it isn't required anymore.

Apart from these essentials, there are a few other things to take into consideration.

First, if you plan on celebrating a Mass in the Extraordinary Form you are going to be under intense scrutiny for the slightest mistake or anything that can be used to "prove" that the Old Form is inferior to the New Form. You should make every possible effort to show the beauty, reverence and sacred character of the Extraordinary Form so that there isn't anything that can be said against it.

Second, treat each celebration as if it were the model for the entire diocese to follow in its worship. Make sure that you and your servers are well versed in their respective roles. Find skilled musicians. Don't settle for volunteers who don't know how to sing and an organ that has more vibrato than an opera singer. Everything from the vestments, to the music to the celebration itself needs to reflect the beauty of the liturgy and show people that they are standing on the doorstep of Heaven. Jeffrey Tucker posted some more thoughts on this.

If you have a group of talented singers who would like to delve into Gregorian Chant, I suggest that you read this and this.

If you are looking for a place to participate in a Mass in the Extraordinary Form and your bishop has a Denethor complex, I suggest you put in for a transfer to St. Louis, Rockville Center, Hartford, Raleigh, Arlington, Springfield, Sioux Falls, Venice (FL), New York, or another like-minded diocese.

If you have a local Tridentine Mass and need a missal you should read our missal guide. We also carry veils and mantillas if you are interested in wearing one to Mass.

add to del.icio.us :: Add to Blinkslist :: add to furl :: Digg it :: add to ma.gnolia :: Stumble It! :: add to simpy :: seed the vine :: :: :: TailRank

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

ashlyn September 26, 2007 at 1:44 pm

I know that male servers in cassocks and cottas are required for the TLM. Can females wear black cassocks with cottas in the NO? Our servers currently wear white albs. One set of server vestments would be easier to manage than two.

Reply

Ian September 26, 2007 at 1:49 pm

I have never seen a clear ruling on this. Cassocks were considered “clerical vestments” and it was kind of an exception to allow non-ordained males to wear them in the first place.

I don’t know if anyone has ever addressed this issue.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: