Monday, February 16, 2009

NLM Post

Yesterday NLM posted a list of things to check to see if your parish is moving in a forward motion-- in dealing with the "reform of the reform". I think our parish is just right where it needs to be (and frankly, way farther along than others---PRAY!!!).

1. Liturgical Orientation. Have you instituted ad orientem yet in any of your Masses? Are you planning to? Have you created resources to catechize the faithful? Have you begun to use "the Benedictine arrangement" for your other Masses? Yes, Fr. faces liturgical east whenever he says Mass, and we have used the Benedictine altar arrangement since Midnight Mass, last year.

2. Sacred Music. Have you instituted chant or polyphony in your liturgies and in what degree? Have you considered implementing things such as the Adoremus Hymnal? What about the proper chants in place of hymns? We have used polyphony many times before (are actually working on a polish Mass setting =D), and have already bought the schola "Adoremus Hymnals"--are waiting on buying them for the congregation when the new translations come out ( they were supposed to several years ago...). Our schola has also used chants for the day in place of hymns; such as the communion hymn.

3. Sanctuary Ordering and Beautifications. Plenty of considerations here which I think are fairly self-explanatory, some of which also relate to orientation. Yes, our entire church has been moved around to focus more on what is truly important in the Mass (i.e. the organ being put up high, and not out front, Ad Orientem, Altar of Repose being put in... etc.)

4. Ars Celebrandi. What have you done to create a more reverential atmosphere? How have you trained your altar servers to serve competently and reverently as well? Well, the list could go on and on here... We have trained our altar servers in explaining to them what we are doing. What is ACTUALLY going on in the Mass--what they are being a part of in their help. In this, they become more reverent and serious when it comes to serving Mass. Altar serves receive on the tongue (most kneeling), and pray before Mass, so as to focus, and thank God for the opportunity to serve at His altar. (as a side note-- since all of this catechises has gone on, and boys have stuck with it, it has become something "cool" or at least, something "respectable". It isn't made fun of, and it has a meaningful purpose. We have over 15 servers altogether (male--I might add).

5. Liturgical Catechises. Have you been pursuing the promotion of liturgical catechetics, explaining the nature of the Mass as worship of God through the Sacrifice of the Son? What are you doing to foster a liturgical piety? Yes. Father hasn't started up any Catechism classes in the past--besides the adult class, but has talked about it in his homilies in correlation with what is said in the Gospel. Our church (whether they know it or not) is a very well educated parish.

6. Summorum Pontificum. Have you added any usus antiquior Masses to help in the project of continuity and enrichment? Not yet. But we do offer a low Latin Mass-- which is EXTREMELY reverent, and a high, English, Novus Ordo (also-- made reverent--"in other words", what the Mass when it was reformed should have been like). "Brick by Brick" my friends... =D

7. The Divine Office. Is the public celebration of sung parish Vespers -- for example -- anywhere in sight yet? Father is going to start offering Vespers every night, starting on Ash Wednesday.