Going to an ordinary English mass with an extraordinary Latin-English missal
December 11, 2009 6 Comments
Since my friend bequeathed to me her Baronius 1962 missal last October, I always bring it with me whenever I go to mass–even to to an ordinary form of the Roman Rite. I would usually go to the church 15 minutes before the start of the mass. Then I will read the Devotions Before Communion such as those of St. Ambrose and St. Thomas Aquinas. After this, I would read the Psalms in Preparation for the Holy Mass: Psalms 83, 84, 85, 115, and 129.
During the entrance song, I read the Asperges–I now understand it in Latin. I follow the ordinary of the mass in English. During Sundays, the Confiteor is similar. I skip the Introit. The Kyrie is the same and the Gloria. I skip the Collects and Epistle and listen to the Readings. I read the Gradual and listen to the Gospel. I read the Credo–it is possible to recite the Apostle’s Creed and silently read the Nicene Creed at the same time. If there is enough time, I read the Incensing of the Offerings, Psalm 62 for the Washing of the Hands, and the Prayer to the Most Holy Trinity. The Orate Fratres is similar to that of the New Mass. I listen to the priest saying the Secret. For the Preface, I go to the Proper Prefaces and read the pertinent ones–usually those for the Common, Holy Trinity, and the Blessed Virgin. I read the Sanctus in Latin–it is straightforward.
Now, the order of the mass gets mixed up. I skip the Prayers before the Consecration and go immediately to the Prayers at the Consecration. Then I go to the Prayers Before Consecration and jump again to the Prayers after Consecration. I read the Pater Noster–I already know how to pray the rosary in Latin. I read the Libera Nos. Then I jump to to the Prayers for Peace before going back to Agnus Dei. I read the Prayers at Communion.
I go back to the Prayers before Communion: the prayers of St. Ambrose and St. Augustine. Then I line up for the Communion. I do not anymore respond “Amen” when the priest says “Body of Christ” because it becomes awkward: are we not sure that the consecrated host is indeed the Body of Christ? (Now, I changed my mind: to be faithful to the New Missal, I shall say “Amen” because it is the prescribed response.) In the extraordinary rite, you do not answer the priest when he says, “The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ preserve thy soul unto life everlasting. Amen.”
After Communion, I go back to my kneeler and pray the Prayers after Communion–those of Sts. Aquinas, Bonaventure, and Augustine. This would just be sufficient before the priest reads the Post-Communion verse, gives the Dismal, and the Blessing. During the exit hymn, I read the Last Gospel, Salve Regina, and Prayer for the Queen–the words are Elizabeth but in my mind are the King and Queen of Spain. I still haven’t thought of our President and our government officials here–maybe I should. If most of the parishioners are out of the Church, I go to the Adoration Chapel and read the Canticle of Daniel–I understand it now in Latin. Then I go to Psalm 150, the Prayers to the Blessed Virgin Mary and to St. Joseph. The succeeding prayers I read are the Litany of the Most Holy Name of Jesus, Anima Christi, “I beseech Thee”, “En ego, o bene”, and the Memore. These prayers after the mass usually take 15 to 20 minutes.
I feel that my use of the Baronius 1962 missal has increased my devotion for the Holy Mass even if it is in it ordinary form and even if I read mostly the English translations. There is a spirituality in the old mass that excites devotion to the Holy Eucharist. And reading a missal helps me focus on the mass. I am still a visual person. I prefer to read scripts even of movies and plays to understand them better. I like spoilers because they allow me to see whether the storyline builds up to the climax or not. And reading a missal helps me fully understand what the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass truly is–the Sacrifice of Christ in Calvary.
Update 12/14/2009: I shall experiment using the New Missal for a month and reserve the Old Missal for the devotions before and after communion.