Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Q and A for the Latin Mass Part II No. 5 - From the Pater Noster Until the Post Communion Ablutions and Prayers

Q and A for the Latin Mass Part II No. 5 - From the Pater Noster Until the Post Communion Ablutions and Prayers

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. Communion of priest and faithful.
31. Prayers during ablutions
32. Communion-verse
33. Postcommunion Prayers

25. The Pater Noster

Is this in the Novus Ordo? Yes. 

Cues for the Laity:
  • LOW MASS: Everyone will be kneeling for this part. Near the end, after "Et ne nos inducas in tentationem", in the Low Mass, the server will reply, ``Sed libera nos a Malo.``
  • HIGH MASS: in the higher level Masses from Missa Cantata up, the laity stand. At the end of the priest`s recitation or the singing of the prayer, ALL reply, "Sed libera nos a Malo."
  • In all levels of the Mass, the priest will say Amen after.
General Gist: The priest and the choirs at High Masses and higher, say and/or chant the Our Father in Latin. The priest raises his voice and recited the prayer aloud with his arms extended

  • This is, of course, the specific prayer that our Lord gave to the Apostles, as well as to all of us, to pray to his Holy Father in Heaven. We find this scripturally starting in Luke 11:1-2 when one of His disciples asked Christ to teach them how to pray.

  • Further, it is used by the Church on all solemn occasions, and is our support. Before this, in the Latin, is contained mention that we are "instructed by Thy saving precepts", and that we "dare" to say (just like in the Novus Ordo) the prayer. We dare to speak it, because we rely on the very precept which we have received so to pray, a precept given us by our great Master for our salvation (169, The Holy Mass).

  • In the Lord's prayer, the first three petitions (after: Pater noster, qui es in caelis:) regard God Himself: Hallowed be His name, may His kingdom come, and His will be done (169, ibid).
    • May His name be hallowed (sanctificetur nomen tuum:), as it deserves the appropriate honour and respect it deserves, as it His very right.
    • May his kingdom in Heaven come (adveniat refnum tuum:), that His reign be established in all and over all, as He is truly King.
    • His will be done (fiat voluntas tua, sicut in caelo, et in terra.), by men on earth, as it is in Heaven by the Angels and the Blessed.

  • Next in the prayer, come four petitions, for those things necessary for our salvation (169-170, ibid):
    • Give us this day our daily bread (Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie): This is stated in daily intervals, because we cannot know what will lie ahead each day. We may die tomorrow. Hence daily bread. While we also need our daily physical nourishment, the "bread" is also in the sense of spiritual nourishment: The Eucharistic Body of our Lord Jesus Christ, on the Altar.
    • And forgive us our trespasses (et dimitte nobis debita nostra,): Because we are sinners before God, to forgive whatever we have done against Him
    • As we forgive those who trespass against us (sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris): we ourselves mark the measure of the pardon we ask of God by begging Him to forgive us as we forgive others who sin against us.
    • And lead us not into temptation (Et ne nos inducas in tentationem,): That is to say, ward and defend us when we are tempted by our concupiscence, or the devil and his minions, to kill our grace with our God, or to wound our relationship with Him and disobey his will. Yes, God, in His designs, does allow us to experience temptation and be tried, in order to gain merit, we still ask Him for his aid because we are so weak and easily fail Him.

  • We finally ask him to deliver us from evil in the response given by all at the Mass in Missa Cantata or higher ``Sed libera nos a Malo.`` In this response, we ask to be delivered from the evil one, who constantly seeks to sin and fall so that our souls are wounded or worse, separated permanently from God in the afterlife. Moreover, if we have committed such evil, we beg of God mercifully to withdraw us from its grasp. (171, ibid)

  • It is after the prayer of the Our Father that the actual Communion of the Mass is considered to begin. (157, The Latin Mass Explained)

26. The Libera Nos and the Fraction of the Host and 27. The Mixing of the Body and Blood
Is this in the Novus Ordo: Yes, though reduced from what it is in the Extraordinary Form.
Cues for the Laity:
Low Mass: None. Remain sitting. The server gives the responses.
High Mass: At the end of `per Omnia saecula saeculorum`, ALL say: Amen. After Pax domini sit semper vobiscum, ALL reply ``et cum spiritu tuo.`` The laity kneel after this response.
General Gist: The priest takes the paten between the first and second finger and says the Libera Nos prayer. He uncovers the chalice, genuflects, takes the host, and breaks it in the middle over the chalice, saying another prayer. He breaks off a particle from the divided host, says `per Omnia saecula saeculorum` with a reply of Amen from the server/people. Then he makes the sign of the Cross (3x) with the particle over the chalice saying ``Pax domini sit semper vobiscum`` to which the server/people replies ``et cum spiritu tuo.`` The Host is broken in half and a particle is dropped into the Precious Blood.

The Libera Nos
  • ".... Communion is the means taken by Our Lord to unite all men one with the other, so as to make of them all, one whole .... In order to express this union, Holy church wishes that the result of that charity which reigns amongst the faithful, should be the object of very special attention. So now, she is about to ask it, in the following Prayer; [the Libera Nos] ...." (171-172, The Holy Mass).

  • The priest asks at the beginning of the prayer, from Libera nos to et futuris, to strengthen us, because our past evils have caused us to contract spiritual weakness, and we are as yet by convalescents. Deliver us from those temptations which weigh us down spiritually, and others sins we're guilty of, and what may seek to allow us to fail again in future (172-173, ibid).

  • Next, it is asked by mercy and intercession of the Saints, including in particular our Holy Mother, Peter and Paul, and St. Andrew.
    • Here, the priest makes the Sign of the Cross on the Paten. He does so because it was by the Cross that Christ became ``our peace`` by the shedding of His blood upon the Cross (cf. Ephesians 2:14). (158, The Latin Mass Explained).
    • After kissing the paten, the Sacred Host is placed upon it. The paten with the Host then is placed to the right of the Chalice, to indicate that blood and water issued forth from the opened side of our Redeemer. (ibid)
    • Why specific reference to St. Andrew? The Holy church has had a very special devotion to this apostle since early Christianity in Rome, because he was the brother of St. Peter. Also, St. Andrew is connected to peace because his martyrdom resembled very much the Passion of Christ, in virtue whereof, peace is given to us. (173, The Holy Mass; 158, The Latin Mass Explained.)

The Fractionation of the Host & The Mixing of Body and Blood
  • After the Libera Nos, the Chalice is uncovered, and the Host is broken in the middle. A small particle goes into the chalice from one of the halves. The priest is also imitating our Divine Saviour, when he did the breaking of bread at the Passover Seder, (159, The Latin Mass Explained) instituting the Priesthood and Eucharist.

  • The little particle is dropped into the Host, and the breaking of the Host, has symbolism (160-161, The Latin Mass Explained).
    • The breaking in half, represents the breaking of his humanity (in his crucifixion and death).
    • The Peace of the Lord, Christ merited for us though the Sacrifice on the Cross. The Host broken over the Chalice indicates the Precious Blood flowed from the bruised body of Christ.
    • The particle dropped into the Precious Blood shows our Lord's Body is not without His Blood, nor vice versa. Because we see them as separate species with the accidents of bread and wine, we might not believe in the Real Presence, or that the Body and Blood do not co-exist. The co-mingling dispels this illusion, reminding us that under such appearance, the one, living Victim of the Cross is present.
    • This part of the Mass also reminds one of the dual nature of Christ: Divine and human in his Incarnation.

28. The Agnus Dei

Is this in the Novus Ordo? Yes. And in certain Novus Ordo Churches ... you might even get to hear it sung in the original text, in Latin!

Cues for the Laity? The Laity remain kneeling.

General Gist? The Priest repeats the words of St. John the Baptist. "Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis." The priest covers the Chalice, genuflects and rises: then bowing down and strikes his breast each time he says the Agnus Dei. The altar servers should also have their heads slightly bowed as well.

  • In this thrice repeated part of the Mass, the priest repeats the words of St. John the Baptist, who proclaimed the Messiah to the Jews. In the old laws of sacrifice in Judaism, an unblemished lamb was used to atone for sin (and also, don't forget, lamb's blood was used for the Passover to indicate Jewish houses to the Angel of Death in the Book of Exodus). In the New Law, the heavenly Lamb, takes away the sins of the world. (41, Latin-English Booklet Missal).

  • Also in the repeating of this prayer, the Church wishes to teach us how ardently and fervently we should desire to pray for peace of the Lord, and remission of our sins and all punishment due to them (161-162, The Latin Mass Explained). The priest is also striking his breast like in the Confiteor as a physical sign of repentance to this effect.

  • The third time, the last words in Latin are "Dona nobis pacem" and not "miserere nobis" as the Eucharist is the Sacrament of peace, by means of which all the faithful become united together. (177, The Holy Mass).

29. Prayers for Holy Communion
Is this in the Novus Ordo? Yes. The third edition of the Roman Missal has these prayers even closer to the original translation of the Latin. However, the first prayer in the EF, is said before the Agnus Dei as the prayer before the "Sign of Peace" in the Novus Ordo.

Cues for the Laity? At all levels of the Mass, you are still kneeling.

General Gist: The Priest, with his eyes toward the Blood and Body of Christ on the altar, prays the "Prayer for Peace and Fidelity," "The Prayer for Holiness", and the "Prayer for Grace". This is before his own communion. Should the Mass level be a Solemn Mass, then the clergy and highest ranking servers will do a "Pax," two specific members at a time. This is not the shanking of hands but as I coin it a "fraternal, light, bear hug" with each other, which is very cordial and reverent at once.

  • The Prayer for Peace and Fidelity
    • This is a humble petition for the blessing of peace for the Church. (164, The Latin Mass Explained)
    • There is also the implication of peace with fellow man in this prayer (which takes from Romans 16:16), and in fact peace with man is done today in the form of the Pax in Solemn and Pontifical level Masses. In these Masses The priest gives the Pax to a deacon, who then gives it to the sub-deacon, who gives it to any priests in choir, who then pass it onto the highest ranking servers. (178, The Holy Mass)
    • The priest will also kiss the Altar, in front of the Sacred Host, whereby the Lord gives him. (ibid)
    • The Pax is NOT done in Requiem Masses, Maundy/Holy Thursday, and Holy Saturday. With Holy Thursday, it's a protest against Judas' kiss of betrayal to Christ. With Holy Saturday, it is omitted as it was not till Christ was Risen, when he greeted his disciples saying "Peace be with you, or Pax Vobis". (178-179, ibid)

  • The Prayer for Holiness
    • This prayer expands the final words of the Lord's Prayer and implores peace. (41, Latin English Booklet Missal)
    • This is one of the two prayers for direct preparation for Holy Communion. The priest is about to receive Christ in the Eucharist, both his humanity and divinity and professes in the liveliest of faith: O Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God. (165, The Latin Mass Explained)
    • He also professes in the redeeming of the Blood of Christ, asking of the Lord's Blood to "Deliver me by this Thy most sacred Body and Blood from all my iniquities." This prayer, though said silently and inaudible to the Laity (but can be read via a full 1962 missal,) reminds us that the work of the Redemption was accomplished by Christ "according to the will of the Father" and "though the co-operation of the holy ghost." (ibid; 180, The Holy Mass). We should also desire the same remission of our sins that the priest does in the Holy Eucharist as well, when we approach for communion. (180, The Holy Mass).

  • The Prayer for Grace
    • While this prayer deals only with the Body of Christ, not the Blood, it nonetheless is important to both priests and laity. Holy Mother church is so completely occupied by the sacrifice on Calvary, that she recoils from renewing it on the altar. Therefore, She confines herself to partaking of the sacred mystery by communion. (182, The Holy Mass)
    • In addition, this prayer can very appropriately be used by the faithful when about to communicate. (ibid). How so? It is quite similar in idea to the response at the Novus Ordo before the faithful communicating, but with more content.
      • It claims us (the priest) as unworthy to receive and also includes judgement and condemnation as to consume the Eucharist unworthily, as proclaimed to us in Scripture in Paul's Epistles constitutes Mortal Sin: NRSV 1 Cor 11:28-29: "28 Examine yourselves, and only then eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For all who eat and drink[a] without discerning the body,[b] eat and drink judgment against themselves. "
      • It is hoped that by the Lord's mercy, it becomes our safeguard and healing remedy of soul and body (of which the Eucharist is. It does have the ability to remit venial sin upon consumption, AND it is our spiritual "nourishment as it were. Further how many a time, and clergy member, has stated that by the sacraments we remain close to Christ and are able to deal with our spiritual struggles, especially spiritual combat?)
30. Communion of priest and faithful.
Is this in the Novus Ordo? Yes.
Cues for the Laity?
  • You are to remain kneeling.
  • After the priest reveals the host to you by turning around, saying "Ecce agnus dei ..." You, the altar servers on your behalf, or the priest alone, might reply back publically with "Domine Non Sum Dignus (DNSD) ut intres sub tectum meua: sed tantum dic verbo, et sanabitur anima mea" three times.
  • When it is time to receive communion, you are to proceed and line up at the altar rails/makeshift rows using prie-deuxs, the first pew, etc. You receive the Eucharist on your tongue AND kneeling, but do not say "AMEN" after the priest speaks in Latin the words "Corpus Domini Nostri Jesu Christi custodiat animam mean in vitam aeternam. Amen." 

General Gist:
  • After the priest has said the communion prayers, he will then genuflect and take the host. He says a prayer in Latin that are a free rendering of Psalm 125 (182, The Holy Mass).
  • While striking his breast, he says the response before self-communicating, which is in Latin what you would say in English in the Novus Ordo Masses with the 3rd translation of the Roman Missal. This prayer is, in Latin, the DNSD.
  • He will then consume the Host, ensure minor particles are collected into the chalice, and then will self-communicate with the species of the Blood of Christ.
  • If permitted, the altar servers will say a second Confiteor and the priest will repeat the prayers said in the first half of the Mass after the Confiteor. He then turns toward the people, elevates the host, and like in the Novus Ordo but in Latin, says "Behold the Lamb of God, behold him Who taketh away the sins of the world."
  • You might be permitted to say the DNSD publically, but if not, then the altar servers might do that for you, or the priest alone. At the High/Solemn level Masses, the servers usually say this response publically.
  • The priest then allows the servers to take Communion upon the altar, from right to left, with each server using the paten while receiving, and passing it along to the next server.
  • The priest, with the server or left server at Low Mass, or the MC (+ Deacon) at the higher level Masses, will then take the paten(s) and serve communion to the Laity. The laity kneel and receive on the tongue at the designated altar rails or area, without replying Amen after the priest speaks.

  • Well, this is obviously important as you are consuming the Body of Christ. Again, if you are not a baptized Catholic, or you are a Catholic who is NOT in the state of Sanctifying Grace/in the state of mortal sin (e.g. murder, excommunicated, masturbation with/without pornography, co-habitation before marriage or after re-marrying OUTSIDE of the Church [no annulment ...],) THEN DO NOT RECEIVE. In addition under the current Code of Canon Law (1983) of which is in force, communicants must abstain from food and drink (save water) for at least one hour before consuming the Eucharist.

  • Should one not be able to receive the Eucharist due to not being a Catholic, being in the state of Mortal Sin, OR having broken the fasting rule, they can offer up a spiritual communion instead. Here is one for such a purpose:
    • My Jesus, I believe that Thou are in the Blessed Sacrament. I love Thee above all things, and I long for Thee in my soul. Since I cannot now receive Thee sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. As though Thou hast already come, I embrace Thee and unite myself entirely to Thee; never permit me to be separated from thee.

  • When the priest takes the host before his DNSD, he refers to the Eucharist as the Bread of Heaven in his prayer. This is an allusion to the manna give to the Israelites in the desert, which was a figure/precursor/foreshadow of the Eucharist. He is also calling upon the Name of the Lord, which has its Scriptural Roots in the OT in Psalm 114:3-4 (167, The Latin Mass Explained).

  • The DNSD prayer are the words relayed by the friends of the deathly ill centurion, who in Luke 7:6-7 felt unworthy to have Jesus heal him: (NRSV) "6 And Jesus went with them, but when he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to say to him, “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; 7 therefore I did not presume to come to you. But only speak the word, and let my servant be healed."
    • At the priest's utterings and thrice-fold repeats of this prayer, the altar server rings the bells, once per DNSD, though at a High/Solemn Mass, sometimes the number of rings increases by 1 each time. The bell ringing indicates this is an important part of the Mass and to excite your attention (168, The Latin Mass Explained).
    • Implicit in this prayer is our own unworthiness to receive the Lord as he is the Word made Flesh, but we are sinful and of human frailty. (ibid).
    • We say this prayer at Mass, because it is our own poor soul craving help for itself, and making use of these words, is a last appeal to God. We sorely need to be cured. As the Healer of all Healers, we must appeal to Him, and crave Him with true humility. (182-183, The Holy Mass).

  • In the priest's saying to us before we communicate, the last few words of the Latin are in vitam aeternam, that is, in life everlasting. This is such, because One Communion would of itself be sufficient to preserve our soul unto Life Eternal, for such is the intrinsic efficacy of tis Divine Sacrament, provided for our wants by God. (184, The Holy Mass).

  • While the priest is scraping the leftover particles of the Host into the Chalice, he asks himself what return he will make to the Lord for all He has given him? He can only reply that he will take the Chalice of salvation and call on the Name of the Lord.
    • Again, with the name of the Lord, it refers to Psalm 125 Scripturally
    • When the priests asks himself what to give for what God has given him, God in His infinite love has given an infinite gift in the Body and Blood of the Lord. God, in giving us the Lord Jesus, who sacrificed Himself for our sins, gave us everything in this act of infinite love.
    • What can the priest give? God has no need for our goods (cf. Ps 15:2). All the priest can give in return is what he has been given, the Chalice of salvation, and so to God we can accept his gifts with kind and loving heart as sufficient thanks (170-171, The Latin Mass Explained.)
    • The priest makes the Sign of the Cross over himself with the Chalice, to indicate again that it is from the Cross of Calvary that the redeeming grace of our Lord's blood flows upon us. The priest consumes under both species as he must consume the Sacrifice, which was offered up under the two species. "Do this in memory of me." (ibid)
31. Prayers During Ablutions
Is this in the Novus Ordo? Yes, there is one prayer said while purifying the chalice. For reasons unknown to me, wine is not used in the ablutions in the N.O., only water.

Cues for the Laity? You should be kneeling at this point, especially after having communicated. You are praying surely to the Lord after receiving him in the Eucharist while things are going on?

General Gist:
  • After the priest places the remaining particles into the chalice from the patens used at communion, he will purify the chalice and cover it up.
  • After the leftover hosts/ciboria are placed back in the tabernacle, the acolyte(s) will get up and pour some wine in to the chalice, the priest will drink it and say the Quod ore sumpsimus prayer, in what is the first ablution.
  • Then the servers will pour wine and mostly water, over the priest's fingertips in the chalice. The priest drinks the remainder of liquid and wipes it clean, in what is the second ablution. He wipes his fingers with the purificator prior to consumption, and dries the chalice with the purificator.
  • The servers/MC/deacon help to "rebuild" the chalice with the priest after the ablutions. In addition the MC/acolyte will transfer the missal back to the Epistle side.

  • In the first ablution, the priest is asking that our Communion is both physical and spiritual, that is, productive of grace in our souls, and that partaking in the Sacrament of the Eucharist in this life, may being eternal happiness in the next. (174, The Latin Mass Explained). Also in the prayer is reference to the Eucharist as temporali fiat, a temporal gift, as while God is eternal, this Communion is taking place at a specific point in time. By means of this temporal gift, Our Lord achieves the union of soul with Himself. The Lord uses this Singular Act as a remedy for our souls. (186, The Holy Mass).

  • In the second ablution, we ask that we experience the efficacy of the Sacrament of the Eucharist. We ask it cleaves to its inmost parts of our soul, which are understanding, free will and memory, with cleaving meaning that it remains there for a long period of time. (175, The Latin Mass Explained). Also that it removes from us our sin (save lingering Mortal Sin, which is only removed upon Reconciliation). Also water is co-mingled with the wine, as the Blood of Our Lord is no longer there [as what the server poured in is unconsecrated wine.] (187, The Holy Mass).

  • Why the ablutions anyways? It is mainly out of respect for the Holy Eucharist (175-176, The Latin Mass Explained).
    • The wine and water are poured in and consumed to remove all existing traces of both species of Christ.
    • Water is poured over his fingers to remove any trace particles of Eucharist from the priest's fingers. Until such time at the 2nd ablution, he remains with hands folded/fingers pinched at the forefingers so nothing is touched with those finger, where the priest used those fingers to handle the Sacred Host. He does not want any leftover parts of the Eucharist to be left on anything else.
32. Communion Verse
Is This in the Novus Ordo? Partially. The antiphon portion is present in the N.O., but only a "postcommunion" prayer is present. The antiphon is often ignored in the Novus Ordo (sadly.)

Cues for the Laity: Before the responses, you are kneeling, and continue to do so for the Low Mass. At the high Mass and higher, you will stand at the responses between Priest and server.  

General Gist: After the priest has finished the ablutions, he goes to the Epistle Side [where the Missal has been transferred since] and reads the communion verse/antiphon from the Missal. He then goes back to the middle of the altar saying "Dominus Vobiscum" with the reply being "Et cum spiritu tuo." The priest says "Oremus".

  • When the priest says domunis vobiscum to the laity, he gives expression to his desire that the Lord Whom they have received, may always abide in them, according to His own promise in John 6:57: "He that eateth My Flesh, and drinketh My Blood, abideth in Me, and I in him."

33. Post Communion
Is This in the Novus Ordo? Yes. It also is a changing prayer for each day. It is tied with the Communion antiphon, but the prayer itself is simply titled, the ``Prayer after Communion.``

Cues for the Laity: If it is a Low Mass, you still are kneeling. If it is a High Mass or higher, you are still standing after the responses.
General Gist: The Priest returns to the Missal and prays once more. In number and subject the Post communion corresponds with the collect and the secret (178, The Latin Mass Explained). After the prayer, the server (sometimes laity) reply "Amen", and the D.V. and E.C.S.T. reply take place again.
  • The prayer portion of this part always mentioned Communion that we have just received (188, The Holy Mass; 178, The Latin Mass Explained).
  • This prayer is an act of thanksgiving and reminds one of Colossians 3:17: "All whatsoever you do in word or in work, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him." (178, The Latin Mass Explained).

Works Cited
1. Moorman, Msgr. G.J. The Latin Mass Explained. Tan Publishing: Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S.A. 2010.

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

4. The Ordinary of the MassThe 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.

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