Sunday, 28 October 2012

REMINDER: Solemn TLMs in the Toronto Archdiocese this Month and December

For Your Information:

Here's a link to the post I created highlighting the Solemn TLMs to occur for this week, and any in future for the Fall Season in our archdiocese of Toronto. When more events show up, if any, after this week, they will be added to the posting:

Pax, Julian.

Friday, 26 October 2012

One priest's Take on the Novus Ordo After Only Doing EF

Hello Everyone.

I hope all is well. I wanted to bring your attention to an article from one of the blogs I follow. This is from a priest associated with an abbey in Ireland (not all Catholicism in Ireland is dead!). He usually celebrates the EF in his practice, however due to circumstances beyond his control, had to say the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite at an excursion somewhere.

Now, before you read this, realize that this is not to say the "OF sucks, the EF rocks." I am not posting this to cause a riot or rally traditional Catholics to protest their local OF churches and bishops on the OF ALONE. However, most OFs are not done as reverently as one can be, and even when done as reverently as possible (as this abbey priest did), without catholics protesting with their wallets, there is still a number of deficiencies that exist that detract from what the Novus Ordo could be.

The priest says in many parts as you read though, HOW one could restore the ars celebrandi to the Novus Ordo, the best as possible to a form that clearly is, well, just not keeping Catholics in the pews every Sunday alone, sadly, despite how we Catholics should all be CRAVING the Eucharist in the re-presentation of the passion, death, and resurrection of our Lord, who gave us in these acts the opportunity to obtain eternal salvation. 

The article is here:

Also one final note, you can see now through even one priest's viewpoint, in this article, why Benedict is encouraging the two forms to co-exist (for the present) side by side, as a mutual enrichment of each other (though I am not sure what the OF does for the EF at the moment). If you dare, share this article with your pastors, priests, seminary friends, family members, and those who don't "get it" why the OF needs that mutual enrichment the Holy Father keeps mentioning.

Pax Vobis Christi, Julian Barkin.

P.S. It's unofficially Latin Mass week in our Archdiocese of Toronto starting October 28 !!! Please see my 2nd or 3rd post for special offerings of the Solemn Latin Mass in our diocese, and at the top, click on the regular mass times link to see where else in the city one can go for daily mass. And do attend and come out to support the efforts of the EF parishes and the lay-run EF initiatives organizing the Latin Massses!

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Wetting thy palate: Found a Latin Mass Rubric and Serving Site

Hello Everyone.

Since this blog is primary focusing on the Latin Mass via a servers' perspective, I might as well start on a small bit with actual serving. I personally won't go into great depth myself till I complete the part-by-part analysis of the parts of the Mass, as I feel that a server should know the basic parts of the Ordinary of the Mass, so that when your MC or teacher says "blah blah blah at the Introit", you'll know what it means and where your serving fits.

However, to wet your palates whether you are a Latin Mass goer, a curious onlooker, or a Latin mass Server, I found a site featuring written instructions on serving positions under various parts of the Mass.

Solemn Latin Mass and Holy Week isn't up though ... :(. Anyways, let this be starter material for your serving adventures. In the meantime, gotta work on part II no. 2 of the part-by-part Q and A.

Pax, Julian.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Basic Q and A for the Latin Mass Part II No. 1: Breakdown of the Parts of the Mass

Q and A Part II: What is Going On at the Latin Mass?

Hello Everyone. 

Here is part two of the Q & A of the Latin Mass. While many of you are used to the Novus Ordo, due to the way the liturgy is carried out in the Latin Mass, you might think you are seeing something completely different that isn't a Catholic Mass. Well, it is a Catholic Mass, just not what you are used to with the Latin Rite Novus Ordo. 

To give you an overall idea of what is happening in the Extraordiary Form liturgy so you aren`t totally off guard when you attend, I`ll be breaking down the Mass in parts according to the Baronius Press 1962 Roman Missal. Each Part will have a name, whether it is present in both forms of the Roman Rite or removed, your cues if any, what is happening generally, and then some description of what is going on and any relevant notes (e.g. better meaning,  Scripture correlations ...).

Since this will turn into a huge post, I'll break it down into each sub-section. 

The Parts are as follows:
NO. 1
The Asperges (only before High/Solenmn Mass on Sunday)
I. Mass of the Catechumens
A. Preparatory prayers at the Foot of the Altar
1. The Sign of the Cross
2. The Psalm 42 - Judica Me.
3. The Public Confession
4. The Priest Goes up to the Altar.

NO. 2
5. The Introit
6. The Kyrie
7. The Gloria in Excelsis
8. The Collects
9. The Epistle
10. The Gradual
11. The Gospel
12. The Credo

NO. 3
II. Mass of The Faithful/Canons
A. Offretory to Preface
13. The offretory verse
14. The offretory of the Bread and Wine
15. The Incensing of the Offerings of the Solemn Mass
16. The Washing of the Hands
17. The Prayer to the Most Holy Trinity
18. The Orate Frates
19. The Secrets

NO. 4
B. Preface to the Pater Noster
20. The Preface
21. The Sanctus
22. The prayers before the Consecration
23. The Prayers at Consecration
24. The Prayers after consecration

NO. 5
C. Pater Noster Till Ablutions
25. The Pater Noster
26. Libera Nos and Fraction of Host
27. Mixture of Body and Blood
28. Agnus Dei
29. Prayers for Holy Communion
30. Prayers at Communion and Communion of priest and faithful.
31. Prayers during ablutions
32. Communion-verse
33. Postcommunion Prayers

NO. 6
III. Conclusion of Mass
34. Dismissal
35. Blessing
36. Last Gospel
[37. Low Mass - Prayers from Leo XIII]


Does this happen in Novus Ordo? Rarely. Only on specific occasions or parts of the N.O. Liturgical Calendar. 

Cues for Laity: The laity stands for the Asperges.

General Gist: The Priest sprinkles clergy, inferior ministers, and the laity with holy water. 


  • During the Asperges, a reference to Psalm 51 verse 7 (NRSV-CE: "7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.) is used in the text, almost verbatim:
  • Hyssop is a tufted plant which the Jews use for ritual sprinkling (9, Latin-English Booklet Missal)
  • Holy Water is a sacramental, the devout use of which is able to remit venial sins. (9, Latin-English Booklet Missal)
  • Catechism Reference to Sacramentals, CCC 1667-1679:  
  • Catechism Reference to Holy Water tied into our Baptisms: CCC ``694 Water. The symbolism of water signifies the Holy Spirit's action in Baptism, since after the invocation of the Holy Spirit it becomes the efficacious sacramental sign of new birth: just as the gestation of our first birth took place in water, so the water of Baptism truly signifies that our birth into the divine life is given to us in the Holy Spirit. As "by one Spirit we were all baptized," so we are also "made to drink of one Spirit." 27 Thus the Spirit is also personally the living water welling up from Christ crucified 28 as its source and welling up in us to eternal life. 29``

I. Mass of the Catechumens Part A

I. Preparatory Prayers at the Foot of the Altar

1. The Sign of the Cross
Does this happen in the Novus Ordo? Yes. 

Cues for the Laity: You will stand upon hearing the sanctuary bell ring, or if the choir begins to sing at a Missa Cantata/High Mass or Missa Solemnis/Solemn Mass. Low Mass - Immediately after the priest and server take their place, then you will kneel till the Gospel. 

General Gist - N/A

  • Each time one makes the Cross, they are revisiting an essential core Catholic belief: That we believe in the Holy Trinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: 3 divine persons with one divine nature
  • The Sign of the Cross is done by the priest 52 times during the Mass, the emblem of the bloddy sacrifice on the Cross, which the Mass represents and renews. (11,  Latin-English Booklet Missal).
  • The priest begins to speak Latin at this point
2. Psalm 42 - Judica Me
Does this Happen in the Novus Ordo? No, this was stripped from the N.O. 

Cues for the Laity: Low Mass - You kneel until the Gospel. High/Solemn Mass- You will be Kneeling

General Gist - The priest recites a number of parts of Psalm 42, with the server responding after the priest says something. In a Solemn mass this will be done with the Master of Ceremonies (head server) and the Deacon and Subdeacon. 

Relevance - 

  • The Priest alternates with the server in reciting this Psalm to express his desire, joy, and confidence in going to the Altar of the Sacrifice (900, The Daily Missal and Liturgical Missal ...)
  • This psalm is chosen in particular because of the line introibo ad altare Dei: I will go unto the Altar of God. (3, The Holy Mass)
  • When the priest says the Psalm, it refers to Our Lord, and it is in His name, that the Priest recites it. (3, The Holy Mass)
  • The Psalm is, of course, like most or all others, composed by David, the great king of Israel from Biblical times and Scripture. He composed this Psalm in his youth, hence the lines about his youth in it in Latin. Furthermore, these parts are chosen to reflect the foresight of David/history of out salvation that are present, especially in the the Lord is our Light and Truth: Emitte lucem tuam et veritatem tuam. (3, The Holy Mass)
  • The bottom line of why our Priest is asking God for his aid in meeting Him in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is that Man is a sinful creature, unworthy and of nothing. The Priest is determined to humble himself and confess his sinfulness to the Lord and thus needs God's aid to carry out the Holy Mass, and further to repent for his (and collectively, our) venial sins. (3, The Holy Mass)

3. The Public Confession - Priest's and Server's Confiteor
Does this Happen in the Novus Ordo? Yes, though it's abridged, even with the New Translation's longer form. Cool part is in the Novus Ordo we are at "through my fault x 2, through my most grevious fault to (decently but not heavily) beat our chests near our hearts with a closed fist, as is done in the EF with the Novus Ordo. Our Novus Ordo confiteor is now closer to the exact Latin translation of the EF mass.

Cues for the Laity: Low Mass - You kneel until the Gospel. High/Solemn Mass- You will be kneeling 

General Gist -

  • The priest recites a public confiteor, where he confesses to us (his fellow Man) and all the Saints, Mary, and the Holy Trinity for his sins (and collectively ours too, for venial sins). 
  • The server or the other Clergy + MC follow(s) after the Priest. They kneel to either his right side, or both sides if it is a Solemn Mass/2 server Low Mass. 
Relevance - 

  • The Confiteor is a memorial of Our Lord's sorrow in Gethsemani when he was experiencing the Agony in the Garden. We also confess our sins through our fault that doing this with all our hearts, we may be confident that all our sins will be forgiven immediately at this beginning of Mass, provided we go to Confession later for Mortal sin (though ideally we do this prior to receive the Sacrament of Eucharist worthily) (7-8, I Like Mass)
  • The recitation produces the forgiveness of venial sins, provided we are contrite for them. (5, The Holy Mass)
  • When the Confiteor is done, besides the Priest or server availing himself to the Holy Trinity, Mary, and the Saints, he avails himself to his fellow human, all through his own fault with his free will in the phrase ``mea culpa x 2, mea maxima culpa`` which translates to ``through my fault x 2, through my own grievous fault`` he also strikes his breast three times to testify to his inward repentance while saying those words. (6-7, The Holy Mass). 

4. The Priest Goes up to the Altar
Does This Happen in the Novus Ordo? No. The priest is usually at the "presider's chair" or stand when he says the confiteor in the Novus Ordo.

Cues for the Laity - At all levels of the Latin Mass, the laity kneel at this part.

General Gist - "with a prayer for pardon on his lips the Priest goes up to the Altar which he kisses ... begging for the intercession of the Saints whose relics repose in the altar stone." (906, The Daily Missal and Liturgical Missal ...). The priest will bow down over the altar and say a prayer over the relics in the altar stone, and if the Mass is a Solemn Mass, the first incensing of the Mass will take place, requiring the aid of the other clergy, the Master of Ceremonies, the thurifer, and a boatbearer if there is one.


  • The priest will say ``Oremus`` in Latin or ``let us pray`` before the prayer. He does so as this is preceeding a prayer he will make to God. He lifts his hands to God, in Heaven, to whom he will speak.  (10-11, The Holy Mass
  • When he is praying in a hushed tone a secret prayer, his thought is to be all pure or to go up to the altar with a pure soul (15, Latin-English Booklet Missal) for as he says, he is entering in to the Holy of Holies (historically, the most holiest part of the old Jewish temple, that kept the Ark of the Covenant), asking that everyone`s sins be taken away by all the saints and for forgiveness.  (10-11, The Holy Mass
  • He prays the iniquities prayer again, a doubling, because he`s closer to God, and the closer you get, any little sin is like an intolerable blot on the soul. (10-11, The Holy Mass
  • The reason that the Saints are associated with the prayers at this time, including kissing the altar stone and the prayers over it, is that the early church offered Mass on the tombs of the martyrs, associating their sacrifice with that of Christ`s  (10-11, The Holy Mass).
Solemn Mass: Incensing of the Altar
  • When the incensing of the altar occurs at the Solemn Mass, this takes one back to the Old Testament, Leviticus, when it is mentioned that incense was used in divine worship. The New Testament biblical reference for incense in the Mass comes from the book of Revelation/Apocalypse Chapter 8, verse 3, where he saw an Angel standing, with a golden censer, near the Altar, on which was the Lamb (Jesus) and 24 elders around him. The prayers of the Saints are symbolized by incense. 
  • Since the Mass is our highest form of prayer, under our Holy Mother the Church that wishes to do as Heaven does (13, the Holy Mass) therefore the incense also symbolizes the priest's and our prayers going up to the Saints and the others in Heaven. 
  • When the priest blessed the incense, it raises the incensing action to the supernatural order. (13, The Holy Mass)


Works Cited
1. Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei. Latin-English Booklet Missal for Praying the Traditional Mass. Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei: Glenview, Illinois, USA. 2008.

2. The Ordinary of the Mass. The Daily Missal and Liturgical Missal with Vespers For Sundays and Feasts From the Editio Typica of the Roman Missal and Breviary, 1962 With Supplements Containing The Additional Masses for Englang and Wales, Scotland, United States and Australasia. Summorum Pontificum Edition. Baronius Press: London. 2009. 

3. Gueranger, D.P. The Holy Mass. Baronius Press Limited: London, United Kingdom. 2005.

4. Sheil, Rev. L. S.J. I Like Mass. Irish Messenger Office: Dublin, Ireland. 1951.

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Pope Benedict Truly knows what Vatican II Should Have Been

Hello Everyone,

Thank you so much for your interest in my little start-up blog. Now for a "traditionally" related side post. I am posting this because in traditional Catholic communities, Vatican II is akin to a swear word or that taboo thing you keep in private drawing or smoking rooms. To those who were around before, and during the beginning post-council (or really, post implementation of the Novus Ordo), it brings forth painful memories of liberal banality and rash changes in liturgy, decorum, etc. but most of all, the removal of the Latin Mass to a near non-existent state. For those that have come anew to Traditional Catholicism, they realize the damage that has been done in the name of "the spirit of Vatican II", and sadly some hate it to a point of being anti-Council and even anti-Pope.

Regardless of the reaction, the fact is, that Vatican II was NEVER meant to be an excuse to do away with traditional Catholicism, be it history, central or Magisterial teachings, or liturgical aspects vital to our Catholic identity, including the Latin Mass/Extraordinary Form/Tridentine Mass/1962 Mass. Well, if anyone has read Pope Benedict's Spirit of the Liturgy, you will understand how our blessed father GETS this fact when and counters arguments for why those things had to go, and modernist criticisms of tradition(s) in that book. And he did it again today in Rome during the Synod for the New Evangelization.

While I was cruisng my YouTube Account, I saw a video from my subscription to the Vatican's channel, and boy is it a whopper:

The Pope, Benedict XVI, tells his audience of people present, INCLUDING bishops who were present at Vatican II, what Vatican II was really about. I am sure some of them were not too pleased at hearing the Holy Father's words as he set the record straight on what "aggorigiamento" means. To me this is a powerful excerpt from this video with my bolded emphasis:

" "Aggiornamento", the Pope explained, "does not mean breaking with tradition; rather, it is an expression of that tradition's ongoing vitality. It does not mean reducing the faith, debasing it to the fashion of the times ..."

Whoa! He basically in a nutshell told them that no way did it mean disposing of all in Catholicism's history, including its Magisterial teachings, AND THE LATIN MASS!!!!. Thank you O' Holy Father for your bold pronounciation of what we faithful Catholics have known all along. Thank you, for fighting back against those who think otherwise and saying truly what the Council meant for the Church. Let us pray as the Synod continues, and with the November meeting in Rome to commemorate 5 years since Summorum Pontificum, that our Holy Father will be blessed with longevity, good health, and continue to restore true meaning of the Council and Catholic Tradition to our Church, and lest he die early, that his inheritor of the Papal throne will continue in his stead.

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian Barkin.

P.S. Started to work on Part 2 of my Q and A dissecting each part of the Extraordinary Form Mass. I've broken it into chunks for readability so part I with the Asperges to getting up from the foot of the altar should appear in the future.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Related TLM Material: Good Article on Altar Rails

Here's a nice well-rounded article on the subject of altar rails. I liked that the author goes through the reasoning of what led to and why they were "wreckovated" in our post Vatican II Catholic Church, and why we should have them. It's a no-brainer for the Latin Mass, but also gives food for thought on incorporating kneeling to receive into the Novus Ordo as well. BTW, the link came from a blog that deals with the TLM in the Kitchener-Waterloo area (that includes Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph, Fergus.)

The link:

Have a happy and blessed Sunday, be it whatever form of the Roman Rite you choose to partake in for your mandatory Sunday obligation. And for us Canadians, also a Happy Thanksgiving. Thank the Lord for what you have.

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Cardinal Collins at Newman Center for Lectio Divina and Eucharistic Adoration on Thurs Oct 4, 2012

Hello All,

This isn't totally Latin Mass related, as this was more of a "Novus Ordo" type event. However, I will post this, because Collins is actually is pro-Latin Mass and has been from the beginning. Were it not for him, there would be no Latin Mass Chaplain at St. Lawrence the Martyr in Scarborough and no Latin Masses there, nor likely the other efforts in the diocese.

Further, this highly intelligent, intellectual, who values the YOUTH of our diocese greatly (wanting us all to be Evangelical Catholics as was said at OCY Summer weekend 2011), is under high scrutiny from Liberals under his charge (including clergy) and other elements of society that seek to demean him, evidenced in the events leading up to, and the responses post Bill 13. Please pray for Collins, for he is vital to the efforts of the EF/Latin Masses in the diocese and needs our support and defence in any matter possible.

So mentioning that, I will bring attention to an event I could not attend due to an interview, that our Cardinal conducted via the University of Toronto's Newman Centre. Newman Centres are Catholic outreach centres on a number of college and university campuses in North America, and it is highly often one will find vibrant, practising Catholics abound in these centres. These centres provides resources such as pastoral counselling  have their own attached parishes and priests or join up with a neighbouring diocesan parish, and hold other Catholic catechesis and social events (e.g. Bible study, Catechism classes, discussion groups, young adult groups ...)

+ Collins came last night to the Newman Centre to hold a Lectio Divina, or a "Divine Lesson" in Latin. L.D's are sessions led by a (hopefully skilled and learned) layperson or a clergy member, who takes the receptive attendees through prayer and meditation on a specific passage of Scripture. When each verse of the passage is broken down, anything could come from it, such as a reflection, a relation to a teaching from the Catechism, even a possible "enrichment" one can add to their prayer life or lesson to learn to enhance their practice of the Catholic faith. Having attended one of these sessions at the Cathedral in Toronto, I can endorse Collins' L.D's. In fact I must say this is an awesome strength the Cardinal possesses. In fact the first year that he brought this publicly to the diocese, with some instruction and enlightenment on the subject, can be found in his book, Pathway to Our Hearts: A Simple Approach to Lectio Divina With the Sermon on the Mount. Here's the link to one online store to buy the book, though there are other avenues to purchase it.

I wish I could report to you what happened there, but I have not spoken to my best friend in faith yet. However, I can provide you with a very poignant image, one that exemplifies the Cardinal and his mandate, and how he's being an example to us Latin Mass goers:
Picture taken from the Facebook page of the Newman Centre of the University of Toronto, Archdiocese of Toronto.

There is currently no reflection on the Newman Centre sites about this event. What I can say though is this is a powerful example of the reverence and care +Collins has for our Catholic faith. If Collins was acting, (as others criticize him in some dark corners of the traditional Catholic blogosphere or circles,) not in the best interest of the faith or all 'Spirit of Vatican II', do you think he'd show up to do a Lectio Divina, never mind Eucharistic Adoration which is 'gasp' a traditional Catholic practice??? He is clearly leading by example here. Yes we would all collectively like a bigger interest and more aid from our Cardinal for the Latin Mass, but at least it's safe to say he isn't afraid to walk the walk in expressing the Catholic faith, even with traditional practices deemed 'pre-Vatican II.'

On that note I hope the picture leaves you with enough to take from it. However, hear's the deal: First read my blog rules in my first post. Then, if you have to comment, do it constructively and in a Cardinal virtue kind of spirit. If you come out being all angry about the "Resurrefix" (personal note: I'm not in agreement with this) or criticize the Cardinal without a valid reason (e.g. liturgical abuse) or myself, the rules will be enacted depending on the gravity of the post.

Enjoy the picture.

Pax Tibi Christi. Julian.

Basic Q and A for the Latin Mass: The Bare Bones of it

Hello Everyone.

I'd figure that before I start adding specific altar serving sections on the Latin Mass, there are likely curious people who don't even know the basics of the Latin Mass itself, including servers. So I'm going to do in this part a Basic Q and A for the Mass, based off of a primer I did for a friend, and in the other part I'll break down each part of the Mass (according to the parts in the Baronius 2010 reprint of the 1962 Missal) and give a brief description of what is taking place.

Part 1: Basic Q and A for the Latin Mass

1) So what is this Latin Mass thing I keep hearing about? I go to Mass on Sundays (or occasionally errr ...)

- The Latin Mass, also known as the Extraordinary form of the Roman Rite, is the form of the Latin Rite of the Mass that has been said for centuries before the post-Vatican II Novus Ordo of Bugini et al. was propagated. In this form, the Mass is said in the Church's primary language, Latin (not English or otherwise), sacred music is used and not modernized hymns, also sung in Latin, and there is an obvious God and Christ  centred approach and mentality to the Mass by all involved (including servers). It is NOT the form said in most Latin rite Catholic Churches today with the whole mass in the vernacular, those modern hymns, female altar servers, the priest faces you, etc. 

2) Um, wow, a Mass in Latin and fancy stuff .... um, before I even Set out, what should I know? I'm nervous already thinking about it ....

- Fear Not! Here's some general tidbits:
  • - For one, you are participating in a renewal of the faith, in the Mass of many of the Church’s saints, martyrs, etc. of all time. 
  • Most of the Mass is in Latin, save the re-reading of the epistle and Gospel and the Sermon/Homily, but there are translation aids available online or at the parish for certain prayers and the regular order of the Mass. 
  • Many who have experienced this Mass have come away joyful, and some even immediately switch over to the EF/TLM and never go back to the regular Mass unless out of Sunday obligation, even children, due to its awesome reverence, and allowance of private and concentrated prayer.
  • Confession is usually offered prior to Mass during regular Sunday Latin Masses. 
  • The general atmosphere is one of reverence, quiet, and contemplation. Further the crowd for regular (not Sunday Masses) low TLMs are usually elders and the more devoted people to that form. However, the Sunday crowd is a mix of all ages, but is especially becoming popular among younger people, say 35 yrs and under. 
  • This form of mass also tends to be one for those who are serious and joyful about their Catholic Faith, or who seek more spiritually fulfilling worship (not received usually at parishes),  
  • With the MAJORITY of TLM goers, you'll find they are well-meaning and faithful Catholics who are proud of their faith and actually practice it fully, and happily participate in the Mass and believe all that is taught by the Magisterium.
  • As a first timer, be prepared to see things that are rare, or not the norm like the Novus Ordo mass you usually attend. 

3) So you say it's not like my normal mass, that Novus Ordo thingee??? How so? Is this Mass “different” from the Novus Ordo, or what I get usually every Sunday?

The similarities or "equalities" I can whip off easily without consulting a theologian or a liturgical theology textbook are:
  • A canonically valid and licit Mass, said by a priest with proper faculties (under the Diocesan Bishop) with the proper form, matter, and intention, is sacramentally valid.. In other words as long as those conditions applied, your Novus Ordo OR the Latin Mass/EF is acceptable to fulfil your Sunday Mass obligation. 
  • Furthermore, the new mass came from the old, though abridged with the removal of certain parts. Some parts will be familiar to you, such as the Glory to God, (ad gloriem majroiem dei) the Our Father, etc. Direct Latin to English translations are present in dual-language missals/missalettes. 
  • There are altar servers who do some of the same actions as in the Novus Ordo (e.g. carry up cruets to the side of the altar and wash the priest`s hands, bell ringing, etc.) However they do much more than that ....
  • You are receiving the Eucharist at the Mass. The way you do is different though ...

Here`s just a few relevant differences between the two forms, with the EF having different things or enhanced versions of the Novus Ordo (one could also say those roles were stripped down so to speak too ...)
  • Most of the mass will be said in the TRUE language of the Roman Catholic Church: Latin. 
  • There are more overall actions on parts of the servers, the priests, etc. They will move and perform the mass in a physically different manner than the Novus Ordo. (specifics in later posts). 
  • There is more "action" in a sense in the laity at the higher forms of the Masses, in terms of sitting, standing, etc. 
  • Unlike our Novus Ordo, the EF focuses on more of a “vertical” type of prayer with the clergy (particularly the priest) offering up our prayers on our behalf to Christ, and we unite our prayers with those of the priest to God.  
  • There are also more parts to the overall Mass liturgy, sadly that were taken out of the Novus Ordo Mass that may be unfamiliar to you, e.g. Prayers at the foot of the altar, the gradual, the introit, additional prayers said at the end of Low Masses as dictated by Leo XIII, etc.

4) So I don't want to embarrass myself or have some old person or stodgy priest yell at me. What do I do so I can come prepared?

  • First, you got to have a spirit of openness and sound mind. Obviously if you are biased against new forms of CANONICALLY VALID AND LICIT forms of worship in the Church, you will not be receptive to this experience. 
  • DO NOT believe the rumours, lies, etc. that many liberal challengers, be they laity or clergy, throw against the EF/TLM to deter people from participating. In other words, go in with a clean slate. Do realize however that there is always a few "rotten apples in any bunch" but they will likely be identifiable and pointed out to you once you start to get involved. If you do happen to find problems with the priests, choir, inferior ministers, etc. then either support the TLM by being laity in the pews, or do not support that community and find another one who embraces a more charitable spirit to the Latin Mass. 
  • Get ready to be used to praying in quiet and silence a bit more vs the noise and clamour of the Novus Ordo. Also it's not a social hall, so please be courteous of the main body of the Church and others around you.

Written Materials:
  • Borrow an old 1962 Missal or prayer book that coincide with the Latin Mass from one’s parents/grandparents, if you can.  
    • There are also smaller red missals that might be for sale in the city or at the Latin Masses (usually $4-5 CDN). Do buy one if you are planning on coming to a few, or would like the standard (non-changing) parts of the Latin Mass. The Missalette also has other prayers, has notes on the side briefly talking about individual parts of the Mass or servers'/priests' actions and cues for the Laity as to sit, stand, etc. 
  • If you like you could bring a rosary, but I have not seen anyone of the TLM bring them to the Latin Mass and pray with them DURING the Mass. Before or after though happens frequently, usually in the form of a prayer group. 
  • If you plan on coming more than a couple times a year, and/or to Solemn TLMs, the best option is a 1962 bulk Missal and there are a few reprints that are for sale on the internet and around the EF parishes/communities in the city. 
    • The most well noted is the FSSP's Baronius Press Missal, and that "other group's" printing company, Angelus Press. 
    • Other older one's are around too like old St. Joseph's Missals (pre 1965), Fr. Lasange's, St. Andrew's Missals, etc. though the best access will be to the reprints from the FSSP and Angelus Press. 
    • I personally use AND ENDORSE the FSSP Baronius Press Missal, of which the FSSP is in canonical standing with the Vatican (a.k.a. approved). 

 Appropriate Attire and the dreaded “Fashion Police”
Sorry to have to bring it up this way, but there IS a general expectation of dressing a level better on average to the Latin Mass, especially on Sundays and Solemn Feast days or Solemnities.  
  • The majority of people dressing up in minimum business casual, all the way up to the “standard:” suit for men; skirt and feminine top for women (full leg coverings optional but desired.) 
  • For a first timer, more likely this is what you would opt to wear: MEN> a minimum of a golf shirt or long sleeve shirt (tie-less) and slacks or chinos with decent shoes (NOT sneakers); WOMEN> a feminine modest top with little to no cleavage (no HUGE V-necks or tightness around the breasts), and feminine slacks with flats or proper heel-sandals in summer, NO flip-flops. 
  • For women, just be mindful in some TLM communities of a few weirdos that think pants on woman = sinful. Bleech. This is damn wrong to think so, but most diocesan parishes, lay-organized efforts, and FSSP, ICKSP communities won't scold you publicly for doing so. They know that kind of nit-picking is what kills the Latin Mass. 
Sub-question: So why dress up man? I love my H-Co tee and sweats and I hate dressing up unless it's hitting the clubs or taking my girlfriend out to a restaurant ... 

  • You are showing your respect and reverence for the Lord in the tabernacle, as well as for the sacrifice that is re-presented in the Mass for all our sins that our Lord carried out.

  • Here’s an analogy: Let's say that dinner you will take your girlfriend too is a private invite to 24 Sussex drive in Ottawa with the Prime Minister and his/her family. The private family has world-renowned chefs cooking the most amazing food for your stomach. Are you and your girlfriend going to show up in sweats and a tee shirt, when your other guests have dressed appropriate for the occasion to give respect and dignity to all parties involved? The same principle applies spiritually for the Mass, where the most spiritual food in the form of the Consecrated Host and Blood are offered and consumed in the Holy Mass of all time. 
You likely know not one ounce of Latin or forgot most of it except for Caecilius est pater and Grumio ancillam delectat (from your Cambridge Latin course back in grade 10). Do you need to know it? 
  • Not necessarily by heart. It helps though. The language should not just be heard as “nostalgic symbols” or a sign of counter-(church)culture rebellion. 
  • As mentioned before, likely there will be offered “programs” or missalettes for sale/donation with the bulk of the non-changing part of the Mass called the “Ordinary”. This is the same for all levels of the EF, (Low, High, or Solemn Mass.) 
  • Most of the time the priest doing the Gospel will say the reading (Epistle) and the Gospel in English after the reading in Latin, and the homily is in the vernacular language (English). 
  • If you have a 1962 bulk Missal, You’ll have everything, albeit you will have to navigate to different parts of the Missal, that is from the Ordinary, to the specific readings or prayers, back to the Ordinary, a number of times. 
  • For non-frequent attendees, the best strategy would be to buy a missalette with the Ordinary in it in Latin and English and to take the handout or the mini “programme” with the readings/prayers for the day for those parts if you are an occasional attendee. If you go at least once a month, get the bulk 1962 Missal. The bulk missal has additional prayers and devotions too, with many in Latin. For example, if one purchases a Baronius Press Missal, they will even have the prayers of the Chaplet of the Divine Mercy in there, with Latin and English. 

5) Okay, what should I know when I actually arrive at Mass?

Prior to Start of Mass
  • Arrive hopefully at least a ½ hour before Mass begins. 
  • Usually, but not always, there is a priest available (at least 15 min before Mass) for confessions. People take their reception of the Eucharist SERIOUSLY as a Catholic is obligated to do so. The rules are actually well known and taught openly in the EF communities. 
    • To do so, one must: 
      • Be a baptized Catholic (not Christian), in the state of sanctifying grace and 
      • Free of mortal sin (some are are listed in the Catechism, others require application of the three conditions for Mortal sin: Willingly do it, knowledge, and objectively the act is of grave matter.) If one has mortal sin, to consume the Host is a sacrilege and in essence “digs a deeper hole for you” for your soul. If you die without sanctifying grace, you will go to Hell (this has NEVER been abolished from the teachings of the Church and it is in the Catechism). So therefore, you must put yourself in the state of sanctifying grace to receive. If one doesn’t receive confession for this matter, many EF people are reverent to the Eucharist and will not receive at that time and offer up spiritual communion (AS ONE SHOULD!). 
  • If this is your first time, or even second or third time, arriving early to Mass will help you get used to the atmosphere and you can also pray to Jesus before the Mass begins. At the very least, you can watch the servers set up the altar for the EF.
  • If you can, buy a missalette (usually a red one) with the ordinary in it, but at the very least, take the Latin-English “programme” or the handout with the changing prayers for that day`s Mass. 
  • The Mass will begin when the Sanctuary bells are rung or if there is no sanctuary bell, the Choir will start singing with the servers in place to process to the altar.

During the Mass
I`ll get into some brief specifics for each part of the Latin Mass liturgy in my next Q and A post. But right now, I`d rather give you some general `heads up` material. 

  • The Mass, like the Novus Ordo, is divided into the two halves: The Mass of the Catechumens (MOC), as they DID not stay for the second half in Church History (which is The Liturgy of the Word in the N.O.), and the Mass of the Canons (MOCa) (which is the Liturgy of the Eucharist in the N.O.)

  • In the MOC:
    • It mainly consists of multiple prayers including remission for sins, as well as the main readings of the Mass and serves to prepare us for reception of the Eucharist by bestowing unto us the Word of the Lord, and through the Gospel and Homily, the teachings of the Lord. 
    • The Homily may also touch on facets of the Catechism or even moral theology.
      • BIG WARNING!!!: The Homily will likely be longer than an N.O. at High Masses, and can and likely touch upon hard to swallow teachings of Christ and the Catholic Church. It is not intended to appeal to you, it is meant as spiritual reflection or catechesis on the feast day and if needed, major moral issues, counters to anti-Church arguments, etc. You will not be fed “fluff” here and the priests actually mean business
    • When the Gloria is sung at higher forms of the Mass/Sundays, you might be standing and sitting in rotation, which will depend on the celebrant/priest when he stands and sits.
    • There is only one reading of either the Old Testament or non-Gospel New Testament Scripture in Latin (first, before English) in the EF. The N.O. has two readings. This is really the only disadvantage the EF has.
    • Like the Novus Ordo, you will do the three crosses of the thumb at "Sancti evangelium ________" when the gospel is read.
    • The Creed (Credo) is usually recited by the priests at the altar, and also the choir. Normally people don’t  say the creed out loud like in the N.O., however thanks to Summorum Pontificum and with more lax EF societies/communities/parishes, you might sing it with the choir. Ask someone who`s a regular what they do.
    • You will KNEEL at the words “Est Incarnatus est” until “Homo Factus Est” during the Creed.

  • MOCa: 
    • Like the NO, this is the part of the Mass, where you re-experience the sacrifice that Christ did on Calvary, albeit in an unbloody form. The bread and wine are consecrated into HIS body and blood in this part. Many of the basic, key parts are similar to the N.O:
      • There is more incensing of the altar in higher forms of the Mass.
      • Much of this part of the mass is said in silence amongst the laity, though the priest is praying and doing his thing in quiet speech.  Generally, this part of the Mass is where one offers up their personal intentions or prayers in the silence.
      • When the priest elevates the host for consecration, you say silently, “My Lord and My God.”
      • When the priest elevates the chalice, you say silently “Be Mindful, O Lord, of thy creature, whom thou hast redeemed by thy most precious blood.”
      • The clergy, servers, and even the people at one point, always in high and solemn masses, will be incensed. When they incense you, you bow before they perform the action, and after. You bow when they bow with just your head.
      • COMMUION FOR THE LAITY: This is the biggest, difference you will perform, and hear complaints about. In the EF/TLM, communion is received on the tongue. No protesting or complaining will change that. You will be likely refused if you try to do it with hands only (unless you are lucky that you get a non-caring priest or he’s rushing or he’s sympathetic). Also you do not say “Amen” after the priest speaks his phrase in Latin which is NOT “the body of Christ.”
        • To Receive the Host Properly, Kneel at the Altar Rail or the first Step up to the altar/in the first row of pews, listen to the priest’s saying, then tilt your head back slightly, stick out your tongue a good distance, let the host touch your tongue, and pull back after a second. Then bring your tongue back into your mouth, close, get up, and go back to your spot. 
7) Anything else I should know?
Well, since you asked ....
  • Generally, follow the priest/laity when it comes to whether to sit, stand, kneel, etc. This is your first mass so let the experienced people help you in terms of cues.
  • There is NO SIGN OF PEACE amongst the Laity. There is a ``Pax`` but it is done amongst clergy and looks like a sort of fraternal ``bear hug.`` The S.O.P. with us shaking hands and hugging and stuff, was purely a Novus Ordo innovation. There is also NO extending of the hands outward or chaining of hands during the Our Father. The priests are up there, not in the body and this isn't "kumbaya, love and peace, man" time.
  • All the music in the higher levels of the EF mass involves organ and choir. Much of it is classical, baroque, or Romantic era compositions, though on occasion there may be a composition by the choirmaster used or placed in there (e.g. Surinder has made some for his TLMs with St. Pats.) However, the music is almost All Gregorian Chant in the Mass, as in Musicam Sacram (1968) Vatican document, it`s got the highest place in the Mass of Church music. There are no folksy songs, no theologically deficient hymns, guitars, piano, etc. The ending hymn might be a classical, but beautiful hymn like Immaculate Mary or Ave Maria on a Marian feast day, that is, something that was created Pre-Vatican II but is still sung between both the NO and the EF. Sorry but you won't be hearing Lord of the Dance or Eagle's Wings here to your liking.
  • There are NO female altar servers, as was custom to the EF before the NO came in. Furthermore a chapel, either at Cambridge University or in Cambridge, UK, tried using female altar servers for the EF and was stopped by one of the Vatican’s pontifical councils or Ecclesia Dei (who deal with Latin Mass issues.) The vocal choirs can be of both sexes, though usually males prefer to serve and choirs tend to be made of all females (men are always welcome to contribute a good tenor or base though!).
  • There are in most of the EF mass churches an altar rail, or the first row of pews is used for Communion. This IS NOT A SEPARATION or representation of clericalism (Priest rules, you are all peasants in his kingdom) where Priest and servers are better than laity and ``closed off`` from the Mass. Think of it in terms of the sanctuary being Heaven, and the body of the Church being Earth (reality), with the Eucharist being the bridge (via Jesus) or the ``little taste of what is to come in Heaven``.  Also historically, even the Jewish temple had separations, even to the Ark of the Covenant where the Commandment tablets were kept. 

Anyways, I think that I've covered most of the most basic things a new person to the Latin Mass might want to know. If I have left out any questions, or you have content to add or valuable feedback, please leave it in the comments section or if longer, a valid e-mail. As for the second part, that will take me quite a bit of time as I'll be looking at other book sources to complement it, so please be patient. That and I do work part-time and between work's numbness and my other commitments, I simply am not able to be a full time blogger 24-7.

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian.