Tuesday, April 8, 2014

More Thoughts on Low Mass in the Extraordinary Form

So I made it to the early weekday TLM a few more times since last week. I think if I were able to get to this Mass more regularly I wouldn't struggle so much as I have.  The priest we had these last few times has a tendency to do everything quickly.  I have never heard Latin spoken so fluently or so rapidly. I could barely turn the pages of my Missal to keep up with the prayers at the foot of the altar, which I like to pray silently, as I do all the other parts of the Mass.   Some of the prayers I know by heart ( in English) but not all of them. It's also a bit of a challenge to remember responses when you're accustomed to chanting them but now must speak them. Truth be told, so long as the server is making the responses, I don't feel obliged to say them audibly. 

When I mentioned the "speed" of the Mass to my husband, who was often a server at the 6:30 AM when he was a boy, he said that's how he recalled it. There's no sermon at the TLM I attend and I'm not sure if that's the norm either. 

What is most remarkable is the absolute silence during the Canon, which is what I love and have observed at High Mass as well.  No disruptive cell phones going off in the middle of the consecration and no disruptive sign of peace either. Also, immediately after Mass the priest kneels down and leads us in the Leonine Prayers. 

When I first started to attend the Missa Cantata on Sundays at my parish church, I found it best not to try to keep up but to just watch, pray and absorb.  Eventually you figure things out. Perhaps that might be the best approach with Low Mass as well. One thing for certain: no matter how lost I may become during any other part, this is not the case during the consecration. 

Here is a beautiful passage from the Missal I use, written by Pope Pius XII regarding the Eucharist. 

"The great moment is fast approaching when the High Priest, Jesus Christ, by an unbloody immolation will offer Himself a most acceptable Victim to the Eternal Father, as He did upon the Cross" - Mediator Dei. 

I try to remember this no matter what form I attend. 

I will go to this Mass again when my work schedule permits but I have to say I am very content with the parish where I attend the Novus Ordo after work, particularly when the pastor is the celebrant. He has us chant the Kyrie, Sanctus and Agnus Dei and he never uses an Extraordinary Minister at Holy Communion. He also gives excellent homilies and is a sound and orthodox priest in the confessional as well.    

My one "problem" switching back and forth between forms is that I sometimes forget to say "Amen" before receiving Holy Communion at the Ordinary Form. No priest has made an issue of it. 

I can't say it enough how blessed I have been with all the choices I have for Mass this season of Lent. I can never thank Jesus enough for this supreme gift. 

It's never too late to try to make daily Mass part of our routine. 

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