Saturday, 3 August 2013

Latin Mass Serving: The Low Mass for Two Servers

Latin Mass Serving: The Low Mass for Two Servers

UPDATE 18/01/2015: One paragraph about candles and two figures added to setup before Mass parts. These additions were added while creating Low Mass for one server posting. 

Editor's Disclaimer: As always, what is stated here is not the be all and end all for Latin Mass Serving. In addition, priests or parishes may have some slight variations on what they do for the minutia of the actual Mass. This may include a slightly different vestment setup, what is laid out on the altar, order of `building the Chalice, etc. Always consult the priest/parish instructor for that.
I also realize that there are altar serving books/guides out there that do say how to do the 2-server Low Mass, in fact I will reference some of them here in this post. However, some servers may not be able to afford the books for a personal library, would be unfairly chastised or teased by their families for ordering such materials, OR like myself, are part of the "Wired" generation and are searching the Internet for resources like those books. Also, my personal experience allows me to add particular things, variations, etc. that the books do not list (as they only give the traditional/usual way of doing things).
What will be covered in this post is the following:
- Go over setting up for the Low Mass
- Go over in depth actions of the servers for a Two-server Low Mass
- Cover briefly the differences of the Two server vs. the Solo/one server Latin Low Mass

As a note, In my posts for the Low Mass, despite having created a separate post for the responses said by servers in the Latin Mass, I WILL post them, as the servers say everything. It also puts everything together here in one location. 


What are the reasons that two servers would be part of the Low Mass, when the usual or known case/standard is one server?
  • In a parish where the Low Mass takes the place of the High Mass, [or is the parish's main type of Mass that can be actually carried out,] two servers can be used even on week days. (12, A Handbook for Altar Servers.)
  • On great feasts there may be two servers at Masses which are public (104, The Ceremonies of the Roman Rite Described).

  • When paired with an experienced server, the Low Mass itself can be used as a means to train the inexperienced server for a solo Low Mass or higher level Masses as the acolytes.
    • The inexperienced server can take the experienced server`s cues as to when to get up, genuflect, etc. and learn to commit them to memory
    • The experienced server can also assist the inexperienced server when they are struggling before, during, and after Mass, and provide feedback.
    • Were one to think of the High/Solemn level Latin Masses, acolyte 1 and 2 duties are done during the 2-server Mass. This is great preparation for doing the acolyte roles during the Solemn Mass. (e.g. offertory and ablutions, transferring the missal ...) 

Prior to Mass

Setting up for the Low Mass
I have covered what to do to set up for Mass in my Starter Points Post No. 2. However, for your convenience here, I will list what to do anyways.
You, personally ...
  • Should wash your hands before touching anything, or at least use alcoholic sanitizer. Just something you do in any place today.
  • Should spend some time in prayer in front of the tabernacle in the church. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED,
  • Vest in Cassock before doing ANYTHING to set up for Mass. Don`t forget to say your cassock vesting prayer.
  • GO TO CONFESSION IF YOU HAVE COMMITTED A MORTAL SIN. SERVERS RECEIVE COMMUNION USUALLY AT MASS, AND TO RECEIVE IN MORTAL SIN IS FURTHER SACRILEDGE TO OUR LORD!!!! Else sit this Mass out, or if needed, beg the priest for an emergency confession in the Sacristy (or to go to the confessional).
  • Vest in surplice just 5 minutes before Mass begins, and say the surplice vesting prayer to do so.
The sanctuary and the altar are to have the following put out:
  • On the altar:
    • At least 2 main candles, nearest the corners of the altar. You can place the normal 6 if your parish allows this
      • about 5-10 minutes before Mass begins, light the corner Epistle candle and then Gospel side corner candle.

      • NOTE: Some priests may prefer that the two closest candles to the Tabernacle/Crucifix are lit in the center. as long as two are lit, this is acceptable. Just be mindful that the traditional/most-recommended method is the lighting of the corner candles.

      • With some parishes/priests, you might also light the candles closest to the Crucifix plus the corner ones. In this case do the Epistle side first, going from the center to the corner-most candle. Repeat this process with the Gospel side.
    • If part of your altar setup, the altar Crucifix, with the corpus of Christ facing the people, is to be placed in the center of the altar at the edge closest to the tabernacle. If the Crucifix is blessed you should handle it with cotton gloves OR a finger towel, NOT BARE HANDED.
    • The prayer cards, with the largest in the center, the Last Gospel on the ``Gospel`` or left side, and the Lavabo card on the ``Epistle`` or right side of the altar, face up.
    • The 1962 Missal on an altar stand, horizontal, on the Epistle side of the altar.
    • If your priest desires, possibly the chalice already placed on the altar, as well as the Burse with some extra ciboria. AGAIN, Use a finger towel or gloves, and do NOT TOUCH THE SACRED VESSELS WITH YOUR BARE HANDS. Some priests may do this, but most will not.

  •  On the Credence Table
    • The actual credence table, is placed on the Epistle side of the altar, away from the main altar
    • On it
      • the cruets filled with Water and wine
      • The lavabo (manutergium) cloth/finger towel
      • The lavabo dish/bowl/etc.
      • The communion paten (in its protector case)
      • If it is a special feast day or solemnity, whatever other items are necessary to be placed on the table.
Picture 1: In the end, your credence table should look somewhat like this. 

As for the sacristy:
  • You must set up the vestments for the priest in the following order: chausable (with strings in a certain pattern, an M or W), the maniple, the stole, the cincture, the alb, and the amice. There might be variations in the layout of each individual piece, but most priests will know/use the traditional IHS layout, as seen here (see the bottom YouTube video).
  • You might NEED to build the chalice, should the priest request this of you, or he is running really late and all items are in the sacristy for you to build the chalice. PLEASE HANDLE THE CHALICE AND ITEMS EITHER WITH COTTON GLOVES OR FINGER TOWELS. You are not allowed to touch the consecrated vessels with your bare hands.
  • You might be asked, as AC1, to assist the priest with his vesting for Mass.
Picture 2: In the end, your setup vestments for the priest should look like this. 

Prior to Leaving the Sacristy
Once the priest is vested and it is the time for Mass, both servers will kneel before the sacristy crucifix, and the priest. The priest will say an opening prayer, e.g. the Ave Maria (Hail Mary) in Latin. You will reply back to the Priest, after he says the first half at ``.... Sancta Maria ...`` (Holy Mary), like when you usually do reply and answer with the Hail Mary prayer with priests.
After the priest will say: ``Procedamus in Pace.`` You will reply, ``In Nomine Christ, Amen.``
One altar server will ring the sanctuary bells to signal to the faithful it is time for Mass. The servers will process in front of the priest.
If the entrance to the Sanctuary is from the Gospel side, then the first Acolyte (AC1) should be the lead server, the second acolyte (AC2) in front of the priest, behind AC1. If the sanctuary is approached from the Epistle side, this order should be reversed.
Regardless who is in front of the priest, that person will take holy water from the water font next to the entryway into the body of the Church/sanctuary, in their right hand, and extend their hand (without turning around fully,) behind them to put the water in the priest's right hand.

Don't forget: The Mass is now beginning. Until the closing prayers in the sacristy, you must now be in `serving mode` where your hands are in Orans prayer position if not holding objects, and the other basic rules are in force.  

The Holy Mass: The Mass of the Catechumens (Intro to Just Before Offertory)

The Entry Procession and Prayers at the Foot of the Altar
The altar servers in front of Father will process to the main altar. Acolyte 2/Book (AC2) will line up to the right of the entryway before the sanctuary in the body of the Church, while Acolyte 1/Bell (AC1) lines up on the right side of the entryway into the sanctuary space from the body of the Church.
I will be using the Gospel side entrance to show the movements portion on here. If AC1 leads the train and AC2 is in front of Father, a smooth transition takes place and looks like this:
Figure 1. Smooth Transition for Entrance Procession

However, should the order be reversed and AC2 is leading the pack, then they must let AC1 AND the priest (P) pass in front of him before he walks up to his position with the priest, as shown here:

Figure 2 `not-so-smooth Transition for Entrance Procession.

The same rules apply if approaching from the Epsitle side, just the reverse order, with AC1 being the person waiting for AC2 and the priest to pass, if AC1 is leading the train. Your train and order will depend on where your sacristy is located, or where you enter from.
Upon reaching the center of the Altar (outside/inside the sanctuary), Ac1 takes P's biretta with their right hand, by first kissing P's hand, then taking it by the left -facing prong of the three prongs on the biretta (there being a left, a center, and a right facing prong). Ac1 then kisses the biretta. Then everyone does a single genuflection in front of the center of the altar with P. P will get up. The servers lift up P's chausable slightly while still genuflecting when P gets up, if this is your regular protocol.

Ac1 and AC2 then get up. Ac2 remains in his place, while Ac1 goes over to the sedilia and places the biretta on it (or another suitable location). Then Ac2 returns to his spot he was before standing. P will have finished doing what he does on the altar, and will come down for the prayers at the foot of the Altar. Once P comes down, the servers will kneel on both knees while father stands. You will now begin the responses as follows, with your responses in bold, and actions the servers do in Marian blue:

(MAKE the sign of the Cross with the Priest)

P. In nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti. 
S. Amen.

P. Introibo ad altare Dei
S Ad Deum qui laetificat juventutem meam

Judica Me - Psalm 42
              P. Judica me, Deus, et discerne causam meam de gente non sancta: ab homine iniquo
               et doloso erue me.
               S. Quia tu es, Deus, fortitudo mea: quare me repulisti, et quare tristis incedo,
               dum affligit me inimicus?
              P. Emitte lucem tuam et veritatem tuam: ipsa me deduxerunt et adduxerunt in
              montem sanctum tuum, et in tabernacula tua.
              S. Et introibo ad altare Dei: ad Deum qui laetificat juventutem meam. 
              P. Confitebor tibi in cithara, Deus, Deus meus quare tristis es anima mea, et quare conturbas
              S. Spera in Deo, quoniam adhuc confitebor illi: salutare vultus mei, et Deus meus.
              P. Gloria Patri (slight bow by server with priest), et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto
              S. Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper: et in saecula
              saeculorum, Amen.
              P. Introibo ad altare Dei. 
              S. Ad Deum qui laetificat juventutem meam. P. Adjutorium (make the sign of the cross with the priest) nostrum in nomine Domini. 
S. Qui fecit coelum et terram.
(The priest now says the confiteor. You do NOT say the priest`s first confiteor with him.)

P. Confiteor Deo omnipotenti, beatae Mariae semper Virgini, beato Michaeli Archangelo, beato Joanni Baptistae, sanctis Apostolis Petro et Paulo, omnibus Sanctis, et vobis fratres: quia peccavi nimis cogitatione verbo, et opere: mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. Ideo precor beatam Mariam semper Virginem, beatum Michaelem Archangelum, beatum Joannem Baptistam, sanctos Apostolos Petrum et Paulum, omnes Sanctos, et vos fratres, orare pro me ad Dominum Deum Nostrum.

S. (Slightly bow and stay that way. Turn toward the Priest and say:) Misereatur tui omnipotens Deus, et dimissis peccatis tuis, perducat te ad vitam aeternam.
P. Amen.

(Moderately bow) S. Confiteor Deo omnipotenti, beatae Mariae semper Virgini, beato Michaeli Archangelo, beato Joanni Baptistae, sanctis Apostolis Petro et Paulo, omnibus Sanctis, (turn towards the celebrant and say) et tibi Pater. (Turn away and look straight at altar again with head still bowed) quia peccavi nimis cogitatione verbo, et opere: mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. (beat breast with right hand at each Mea ... culpa) Ideo precor beatam Mariam semper Virginem, beatum Michaelem Archangelum, beatum Joannem Baptistam, sanctos Apostolos Petrum et Paulum, omnes Sanctos, (turn towards the celebrant and say:) et te Pater(Turn away and look straight at altar again with head still bowed) orare pro me ad Dominum Deum Nostrum.

P. Misereatur vestri omnipotens Deus, et dimissis peccatis vestris, perducat vos ad vitam aeternam.
S. Amen.
(the server then lifts their head up from the bowed position)
P. Indulgentiam + (cross with the priest) absolutionem, et remissionem peccatorum nostrorum, tribuat nobis omnipotens et misericors Dominus. 
S. Amen.
P. Deus, tu conversus vivificabis nos..
Et plebs tua laetabitur in te.

P. Ostende nobis Domine, misericordiam tuam.
S. Et salutare tuum da nobis
P. Domine, exaudi orationem meam.
S. Et clamor meus ad te veniat.

P. Dominus vobiscum.
S. Et cum spiritu tuo.
P. Oremus

P now will get up and approach the altar. If desired by P, the servers slightly lift his chausable as he goes up. The servers get up together, turn 90 degrees left or right to go to the center of the altar. They then stand next to each other and do a single genuflection. They turn towards their side of the altar, and proceed a couple of paces past their position from the foot of the altar. When they reach their spots, they kneel on both knees. See diagram here for movements: 

Figure 3. Post Prayers at the Foot of the Altar to Before the Kyrie

The Introit to the Gradual
P then does the introit prayer. Next the priest does the Kyrie with server responses:

P. Kyrie eleison. 
S. Kyrie eleison.
P. Kyrie eleison.
S. Christe eleison.
P. Christe eleison.
S. Christe eleison.
P. Kyrie eleison.
S. Kyrie eleison.
P. Kyrie eleison.

___  _   ___  __     ___   ____     ____  ___    ____  ___    ____  ___    ___   ___  

The Gloria
This portion of the Mass occurs on all Sundays except those in the penetential seasons (Lent and Advent) and REQUIEM MASSES. The priest will not say this if he is donned in black or violet. If at a High/Solemn Mass, the priest will intone "Gloria in Excelsis Deo" and then say the rest of the prayer while the choir sings it. The priest(s)/clergy will likely return to the sedilia and chairs  during the singing while waiting for completion.
In addition, depending on the feast day of the particular saint(s), or the Solemnity, you might hear the Gloria regardless of Mass level. Check the EF ORDO calendar to know if you will be doing a Gloria, and therefore the corresponding serving actions.
You will stay kneeling at your spots for this.

(The priest stands at the middle of the Altar, extends and then joins his hands, makes a slight bow and says:)

P. Gloria in excelsis Deo (slight bow). Et in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis. Laudamus te. Benedicimus te. Adoramus (slight bow) te. Glorificamus te. Gratias agimus tibi propter magnam gloriam tuam. Domine Deus, Rex coelestis, Deus Pater omnipotens. Domine Fili unigenite, Jesu Christe (slight bow). Domine Deus, Agnus Dei, Filius Patris, Qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis. Qui tollis peccata mundi, suscipe deprecationem nostram (slight bow). Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris, miserere nobis. Quoniam tu solus Sanctus. Tu solus Dominus. To solus Altissimus, Jesu Christe (slight bow). Cum Sancto Spiritu (+ sign of the cross with priests) in gloria Dei Patris. Amen.

____   ____   ____    ____    ____    ____    ____    ____    ____    ____    ____    ____   
P, Turning towards the people, says:

P. Dominus Vobiscum.
S. Et cum spiritu tuo. (said by everyone)
P. Oremus.

The Collect for the day is read. If there is more than one collect, then at the end of the FIRST and the LAST collect, the server(s) reply after each commemoration: 

P. Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
S. Amen

In a Low Mass, the servers remain at their places, kneeling. Upon seeing the priest look the way of the servers (to the left), OR more traditionally, the priest puts their left hand on the altar, the server(s) reply:
S. Deo Gratias

If one is serving during the Ember days, where multiple collects and epistles can be present, then the process of the collect and epistle/lessons repeats. The server will respond with Amen after the saecula saeculorum of the collect, and Deo Gratias after each epistle/Lesson

The Gradual to the Offertory
P now reads the gradual/alleluia prayer. When this happens, both servers get up. Ac1 stays standing in place with hands in orans position. Ac2, will get up, and proceed right. On reaching the center of the altar, Ac2 does a single genuflection. Ac2 then goes in front of Ac1 to the epistle side of the altar, standing just below the steps of the predella. He goes around the "long way." He waits here until P moves to the center of the altar.

Ac1 then takes the missal on its stand, and transfers the missal in a "V" pattern or "the short way. He goes diagonally down the epistle side to the center of the altar below the steps of the predella, does a single genuflection, and then proceeds up the steps of the predella diagonally to the Gospel side of the altar. He then places the missal on its stand, on the altar, slightly diagonally but open to face the priest. The server then turns to the left to get off the predells steps, and will stand at the foot of the predella, next to the missal, facing P. See this diagram for the steps involved

Figure 4. Ac2 Transferring the Missal at the Gospel. Note in Each of my Figures, the Cross at the center, means the server(s) genuflect(s).

P will then go to the Missal. Upon reaching it, the P and servers do the responses at the Gospel:
P. Dominus vobiscum.
S. Et cum spiritu tuo.
P. Sequentia (or Initium) sancti Evangelii secundum N. (everyone crosses their head, lips, and heart, while the left hand is flat and open upon one`s chest)
S. Gloria tibi, Domine.

The Gospel is read. Ac2, will then wait for P to say the name of Jesus in the Gospel. Most gospels have "In illo tempore Iesu dixit" (At the time, Jesus says). At the name of Christ, Ac2 bows and then goes back to his spot the long way. If the name of Jesus is not said, Ac2 then bows slightly and leaves immediately as the Gospel starts being read in Latin, and returns to his spot the long way.

After the gospel, the reply is said by the servers, as the priest lifts the Missal:
S. Laus Tibi Christe

Both servers then come together at the center of the altar (like the first steps in Pic ), do a single genuflection, and will either process to the choir pews to stand and sit for the vernacular (English) Scripture readings and homily, OR in some parishes, the servers might remain kneeling for the Gospel and homily.

After the homily, the servers process back to their kneeling spots, but not before the do a single genuflection at the altar together.

Should the Credo be said on that day (check the EF Ordo if it is a weekday or Saturday day Mass), then the servers do the following actions:

The servers slightly bow at "Deum", slightly bow during the "Dominum Jesum Christum," and Everyone kneels at "Et incarnatus est ... Homo factus est." When this is said, the servers at the foot of the Altar will moderately bow as they are kneeling. After this the servers slightly bow at `Simul adoratur.`` All people in the Mass will cross themselves with the priest at ``Et vitam``The responses for the servers after this are:

P. Dominus vobiscum.
S. Et cum spiritu tuo.
P. Oremus. (Servers slightly bow their head)

The Holy Mass: The Mass of the Canons (Offertory To Post-Communion Ablutions)

The Offertory
At this point P will begin the preparations for the offertory. He will say the offertory verse. In some parishes/groups, a bell might be rung once (as indicated in the popular "red missalette" from the Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei.)

Regardless of the bell or not, both acolytes get up. Ac1 will go straight up from his spot to the right side of the main altar to help P fold the chalice veil:

Figure 5: Ac1 goes to Altar to Fold Chalice Veil While Ac2 Genuflects and Goes to Credence Table

The chalice veil is folded up into a "Zig Zag" pattern as shown here:
Figure 6. Folding the Chalice Veil on the Altar as Ac1

The veil will be left slightly over the right side of the altar, in the upper right corner, near the "Lavabo" altar card. Meanwhile, Ac2 will do a single genuflection at the center, then proceed to the credence table. Ac1 will also approach the credence table after folding the chalice veil.

At the credence table, traditionally, Ac1 will take the wine cruet from the table, while Ac2 takes the water cruet. This is what should happen. (However, should a server be in the wrong spot, or take the wrong cruet by accident, then both servers should proceed with whatever cruet they have in hand, as long as the wine is presented first to the priest.) Both servers wait patiently for the priest to approach the right side of the altar. Before they approach, they bow slightly with their heads, then come forth.
Ideally, this is what should happen pictorially:

Figure 7: Offertory Approach to Altar with Water and Wine.

Because the servers are giving the cruets to the priests, they then act with the usual solita oscula (the usual kisses). That is before they give the cruet to the priest, they kiss them before the hand over. Also, they are to be GIVEN ONLY with your RIGHT hand. Ac1 first kisses his cruet and gives it, handle facing the priest, to P. After the priest pours the wine into the Chalice, P gives it back to Ac1. Ac1 RECEIVES the wine cruet with his LEFT hand, and kisses the cruet. Ac2 is to kiss the cruet and present it to P with his right hand. P will bless the water with the sign of the cross and a prayer, and then takes it from Ac2. Ac2 also kisses the water cruet upon receiving it back from P, in Ac2's left hand. Both servers then do a head bow, and proceed back tot the credence table.

Next will be the first ablution. Ac2, being the water bearer, will then take the lavabo bowl or dish in his left hand, and keep his water cruet in his right. Ac1 might need to help Ac2 with this. Meanwhile, Ac1 takes the finger towel, unfolds it, but keeps it between his hands in the orans prayer position. (alternatively, the priest might be okay with the towel being draped over one's left arm like a butler like after the lavabo.) Both servers wait for P to return to the epistle side of the altar after raising his eyes and hands to say the Veni, Sancificator prayer. They do a head bow, and then approach the epistle side of the altar. Ac2 with the water, pours it over the fingers of the priest in a dignified manner. Ensure that the water bowl is at waist height of the priest, or slightly lower when pouring.
Ac1 then unfolds the finger towel and hands it to the priest. When finished, Ac1 presents his left arm straight across his lower chest to above the abdomen, for the priest to lay the finger towel over. Both servers then bow slightly with the head, and place their items back on the credence table.

The servers will now return to their kneeling spots prior to the offertory. If the bell is NOT placed prior to Mass at Ac1's position, then Ac1 should get the bell from the credence table and bring it to his spot. The servers are to stand side by side when they reach the center of the altar, do a single genuflection, and then turn and take a couple of steps to get back to their kneeling spots on either side of the altar. They kneel.

Post-1st Ablution to Before the Consecration
As soon as the servers get to their spots and kneel, Father will get to, or have begun to say the "Orate Frates" prayer. The servers must pay careful attention to this prayer, as after P says "Deum Patrem omnipotentem" in a lower voice, they will respond as such:

S. Suscipiat Dominus sacrificium de manibus tuis ad laudem et gloriam nominis sui, ad utilitatem quoque nostram, totiusque Ecclesiae suae sanctae.
P. Amen.

The priest will then say the secret prayer. Afterwords, there will be another round of reply and answer with P:

P: Per omnia saecula saeculorum.
S. Amen. 
P Dominus Vobiscum
S. Et cum spiritu tuo.
P. Sursum corda.
S. Habemus ad Dominum. 
P. Gratias agamus Domino Deo (slight bow by servers) nostro.
S. Dignum et justum est. 

It would be highly advised at this point, that Ac1 should pick up the bells to prepare for the ringing of them at the Sanctus.

P then says the "Vere Dignum ..." prayer. After the last sentence, where he says "... quotidie, una voce dicentes", Ac1 is then to ring the bell each time (3x in total) when the priest says "Sanctus." When the priest says "Hosanna in excelsis" you will cross yourself with the Priest.

Note: For Ac1, something that they might choose to do is to hold the bells from this point forward until after they are needed at their last point in the Mass, the Domine Non Sum Dignus. They would have to keep their left hand on their breast while doing so. While this allows for a possible reduction in noise (from picking it up and putting it down multiple times), it does not allow for one to make some of the gestures in Mass, like the Sign of the Cross, and doing things not like Ac2 might look ridiculous. Please ask your priest/group what they prefer Ac1 does before Mass.

The Consecration
Now is the most critical part of the Mass, where the substances of Bread and Wine undergo transubstantiation to become the Body and Blood of Christ.

The priest will go through the prayers of the Canon before consecration. Ac1 must pay attention
once he gets to his place. He will need to ring the bells at the Hanc Igitur. That prayer will be said as soon as P spreads his hands over the chalice, palm down and flat. Ac1 rings the bell once at this point.

After the Hanc Igitur, Ac1 with bell in hand, and Ac2, get up, come together and do a single genuflection at the center of the altar. They then proceed to kneel on the altar step, before P, at his left and right. The acolytes will be right next to P. This diagram will show the movements:

Figure 8: Acolytes Movements to be at P's side for Consecrations.

Both servers should now be next to the sides of the priest, on the step below the main altar. P will then begin the words of the consecration. The servers should pay attention, as they will be shortly needed after he whispers the words of consecration of the bread: ``Hoc Est enim corpus meum.`` After, the priest will genuflect. Ac1 rings the bell once at P`s genuflection. Both servers will do a head bow. P will then lift the Eucharist above his head. As he is lifting up the chalice, both servers are to grab the corners of his chausable hem, and lift it up. Ac1 does a single ringing of the bells, graciously (not violently!), three times. As P lowers the Eucharist, the servers will lower the hem of P`s chausable. P will then genuflect again. Ac1 does a single bell ring again. The servers are to bow their heads slightly again.

The same process repeats for the wine that is consecrated to the Sacred Blood of Christ, except that the words the servers must pay attention to are `` .... Haec quotiescumque feceritis, in mei memoriam facietis.`` The servers are then to repeat what they did above, for the consecration of the Blood: the head bowing at each genuflection, the lifting of the chausable hem on each side, and Ac1 To do the three single rings of the bells when the Chalice is elevated, plus a bell ring for each genuflection P does.

The servers now do the reverse of what they did in Figure 7: The get up, they come down sideways from the steps of the predella (no turning your back to the tabernacle!), genuflect facing the center of the altar (or tabernacle if centered), then turn left or right and go back to their initial kneeling spots at the first step of the predella.

Post Consecration to Communion
P now makes a number of prayers after the consecration. One prayer will be the "Nobis Quoque Peccatoribus" prayer, of which those three initial words will be said aloud to the laity. The servers should pay attention at this point, as they will be needed for more responses.

OPTIONAL: Depending on your parish/group/MC/priest, you might ring the bell at the "minor elevation". This comes after the Nobis ... prayer. P will uncover the Chalice and genuflect. He will then elevate the chalice with the host above it, just a bit above the altar. Ac1 rings the bell once.

After P crosses the Chalice 5 times, and then replaces the Sacred Host and covers the Chalice, he'll genuflect and say:

P. Per omnia saecula saeculorum.            
S. Amen

From this point forward, I am calling the two lines above the ``POSS-Amen`` response. P will then say Oremus (slight head bow by servers), say one prayer, and then P will say the Pater Noster (Our Father) in Latin. At the sentence ``Et ne nos inducas in tentationem``, the servers reply:

S. Sed libera nos a malo.
P. Amen

P will say the Libera Nos, and a couple of other prayers, breaking off a particle from the divided Host. At the breaking of this particle and a prayer, the servers will do another POSS-Amen response. Now P will make the Sign of the Cross with a Eucharistic particle over the Chalice saying a prayer, to which the servers make a reply:

P: Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum.
S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

I mention that the reply is Et Cum Spiritu tuo, but P DOES NOT say ``Dominus vobiscum``. This might throw you off as this is not the usual dictum of the priest for your reply. So be cautious of this anomaly, as it is the only time in the Mass the response does not come after the usual Dominus Vobiscum.

Continuing on, P will then say another prayer, then cover the Chalice and genuflect. P then bows down and strikes his breast, saying the Agnus Dei. The servers will do a head bow the whole time he says this. Some more prayers will be said, then P will take the host and says another prayer, but will then say the Domine Non Sum Dignus prayer three times. Each time the priest says D.N.S.D in the prayer, Ac1 rings the bell once.

After a couple more prayers, P will consume the Eucharist. Two possible options happen here at this point, for the acolytes to come up to the altar for communion:

1) Ac1 and Ac2 do as they did in Fig 7 with one key exception: Ac1 will need to either leave the bells or bring them to the credence table, and get the paten. Ac1 will get the Paten and stand beside Ac2 at the center of the Altar below the predella, genuflect, and then both proceed as in figure 7 to their places next to P before P`s step.

2) Ac1 gets the paten early. He returns to his kneeling spot until P has consumed the Precious Blood. Then the servers do exactly as they did in Figure 7. See this Figure:

Figure 9: Proceeding to the Altar for Servers' Communion. 1) Ac1 goes and gets paten from the credence table and goes back to his kneeling spot. 2) Both servers get up, go to the center of the Sanctuary and genuflect. 3) The servers go to the step before the Altar platform and kneel to receive Communion.
Not always, but in most parishes/groups, both Ac1 and Ac2 now do a Confiteor a second time. They will do a moderate bow when they say it a second time. P then turns toward the people with the "Ecce Agnus Dei" prayer. The priest again says the D.N.S.D. prayer (or possibly the altar servers too). After, each server takes communion on the tongue, holding the paten in their right hand under their chin with left hand on their chest. They do not say AMEN like the Novus Ordo after receiving. Ac1 will pass the paten to Ac2 after receiving. Ac1 will then retreat back to his kneeling spot before coming up.

Ac2 though, will then follow P for giving communion to the laity. P starts at the Epistle side altar rail/pew.etc. where the laity line up for communion. Ac2 with paten stands to the priest's right and puts the paten under the chin of each communicant (but not touching the chin). When P and Ac2 are finished with the epistle side, Ac2 walks forwards to the end of the Gospel side receiving area, closest to the wall of the Church. Ac2 will then turn around, and P and Ac2 will proceed back towards the center of the Altar while P gives communion to the faithful.

Post Communion to the Ablutions
After the last person has received communion, the priest might at this point take the paten from you. Let the priest take it, do not do anything with the paten, as you might drop particles of Jesus in the Eucharist on the paten! That's a big no no! Once this happens, Ac2 then returns to his kneeling spot at the first step of the predella. The paten will be returned to the servers on the altar upon coming up with the cruets.

If the priest does not take the paten immediately from Ac2, then he will walk up with P to the altar, place it on the altar table (Epistle side), and then return to the lowest step of the Epistle side. If P returns the paten to Ac2, he will place it on the credence table when he goes for the wine and water cruets with Ac1. If P does not return the Communion paten to Ac2, one of the acolytes will pick it up from the altar table after bringing the cruets and place the paten on the table (40, How to Serve Low Mass and Benediction)

More likely, the first scenario will happen. After handing over the paten, in this case, Ac2 returns to his kneeling spot at the Gospel side of the altar. Once the priest returns the unused hosts to the tabernacle and close it, both servers come together at the center of the altar, genuflect, and then proceed to the credence table. Usually, Ac1 will take the wine, while Ac2 takes the water. P stays at the center of the altar, and extends the Chalice out to your direction with his right hand. This is your cue to bow slightly, then proceed forward to the epistle side of the altar. Ac1 is to pour a small quantity of wine into the Chalice, but not touch the cruet to the rim of the chalice. You are to stop when P raises the chalice a bit. Also, no kisses are made as you are not giving an item to the priest. Ac1 bows, and steps back a bit, waiting next to Ac2.

P will then swish the liquid into the chalice to wash whatever leftover Blood and Body of Christ remains. P drinks it and says the Quod ore sumpsimus prayer. Then he will turn to you, with his fingers pinched over the center of the Chalice (or a smaller ciborium/sacred vessel). Ac1 is to pour a small quantity of wine over P's fingers, straight down over the tips of his fingers, without sloshing it all over. Ac2 then pours water over P's fingers. You can move the water flow a bit over some of P's fingers, but do not go crazy. P will rub his fingers together with the water, then will raise the vessel a bit turn back to the middle of the altar. Both servers will then slightly bow, and return to the credence table. Also, the communion paten will return to you at this point, and one of the servers should take it from the main altar back to the credence table too. Both acolytes then proceed back to the center of the altar below the lowest step of the predella, and do a single genuflection.

Now comes a part requiring some practice and skill in the 2-server Mass. Figure 10 below will show the movements here. Once the servers have genuflected, Ac2 will go in front of Ac1, and go around the predella the long way to the Gospel side of the altar, where the Missal is. Ac1 will do the same but on the Epistle side of the altar, in order to get to the folded Chalice veil. Ac1 takes this veil from the Altar, while Ac2 takes the missal on the bookstand. They come down the short way in a ``V`` pattern from their sides, like when Ac2 transferred the missal at the Gospel.  They meet at the center of the altar below the predella, and genuflect.

Then Ac2 will go up to the right side of the altar, and place the missal back where it was pre-Gospel. It is to be laid horizontally, or straight, for P to read. After doing so, Ac2 will descend down the epistle side steps of the predella, be at the spot on the same plane as the altar below the last step of the predella, and then turn back and face the priest with his hands still in the orans position.

Ac1 will go behind Ac2, but go up the short way with the chalice veil in hand. Now, things will depend on your priest. Some priests will take the veil first from you, and then the burse, and re-assemble the Chalice. Others, will require the burse first, (you might open it for the priest to put the corporal in, or just hand it over,) which will necessitate Ac1 to lower the veil onto the altar, then give P the burse, and then the chalice veil folded/unfolded. Please ask your parish/P/instructor what to do.
Figure 10A: First Steps of Post-Ablution Server Duties: 1) Both servers meet at the center of the Sanctuary to genuflect. 2) Ac1 goes to the Epistle side of the Altar the "long Way" in a "L" pattern to where the Chalice Veil is, and takes it. Ac2 does the same at the Gospel side of the Altar to take the Missal.
Regardless, Ac1 afterwards, descends the predella steps too, and will turn to face P on the same plane as the altar with hands in orans position. Once the chalice is finished and built, Ac1 and Ac2 will then slightly bow, then go down back to the front of the altar the "long way" in a "L" pattern. If P desires to say the "Prayers after Low Mass" after everything, but does not have his own prayer card on the main altar, or you have been instructed to leave one on the credence table, Ac1 then gets the card and brings it with him as he comes down. The acolytes come together at the center of the altar, genuflect, then Ac1 goes behind Ac2, to return to his kneeling spot at the epistle side. Ac2 goes in front of Ac1 to get to his spot at the Gospel side. Ac1 will lay the Low Mass prayers card at his side if he has to bring it with him. See the figure below:

Figure 10B: Remaining Duties Post-Ablution: 3) The servers go down the predella steps the ``Short Way`` in a ``V`` pattern to the center of the Sanctuary and genuflect. 4) With both servers doing the V pattern, Ac2 goes ahead of Ac1, up the Epistle side of the altar to deposit the Missal on the altar. He then goes down the Epistle side of the altar, and waits for Ac1 to finish his duties, facing the priest with hands in orans position. Ac1 goes behind Ac2, and goes up the predella steps and assists the priest in ``building the chalice`` in the order P sees fit. Once done, he descends the predella steps on the left side of the altar, turns and face P, and Ac1 and Ac2 do a slight bow. 5) The servers process back to the center of the Sanctuary the ``Long Way``, and genuflect, then go back to their kneeling positions During the First half of the Mass. Ac2 goes in front of Ac1 when getting back to his spot. Ac1 goes behind Ac2.
Post Communion to Exit from the Sanctuary
P now reads the communion antiphon. He will return to the middle of the altar and another POSS-Amen response between P and servers happens again, as well as P saying Oremus (servers do slight head bow). P will then return to the missal for the post communions. The ending to all postcommunion prayers, end in Latin with the POSS-Amen response between P and servers.

P goes to the middle of the altar, kisses it, and then turns to the people and says aloud,

P. Dominus vobiscum.
S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

After this,

1) What P says and your reply in a Normal Low Mass are:

P. Ite, Missa est.
S. Deo gratias.
_____   ________   _______   ________    ________   ________   _______  _____    ______  ___
2) If the Gloria is omitted, the priest faces the Altar and says aloud, 
P: Benedicamus Domino 
S: Deo Gratias.
_____    ________    ______    ________     ________      ________     _______    ____     ______
P: Requiescant in pace.
S: Amen. 
_____    ________    ______     _______    _______     _______    _______     _________    _____
*** I will cover the Requiem Low Mass in another post in full. This is just here to show that there are more than one option for the Low Mass response.

P will then say silently the Placeat Tibi ... prayer, kiss the altar, and then give the Final blessing. During ... pater et Filius, et spiritus sanctus, make the sign of the cross with the priest. You also respond, amen.

Now P will go to the Gospel side of the altar to read the Last Gospel. The servers will stand. Ac2 will face directly ahead at P. Ac1 either looks directly ahead, or will slightly turn towards P/the Gospel card. P and the acolyte then give the same responses as before with the Mass's primary Gospel:

P. Dominus vobiscum.
S. Et cum spiritu tuo.
P. Sequentia (or Initium) sancti (everyone crosses their head, lips, and heart, while the left hand is flat and open upon one`s chest) Evangelii secundum N. (E.G. Ioannem - John)
S. Gloria tibi, Domine.

The servers will then stand straight with hands in orans position. At the mention of this line: Et Verbum Caro Factum Est, all people including the servers will genuflect. At the end of the Gospel, of which the last line is: "... plenum gratiae et veritatis", the servers reply "Deo Gratias". both servers will then proceed to the center of the altar, just giving enough space for P to come down beside them.

Should the Leonine prayer NOT be said, Ac1 is then at the moment he gets up, allowed to get the biretta from the sedilia or Gospel side area. He will return to his spot with it. Do not forget your carrying rules: biretta in the right hand with the left prong of the triad between your fingers, left hand flat across your chest. More likely, though, the following below will happen ....

Should these prayers be desired, and Ac1 had to bring the Low Mass prayers card with him, he will pick it up and have it between his "orans hands", ready for P. P will then come down beside the two servers, and all will kneel together for the Leonine (Leo XIII) Prayers OR "Prayers after Low Mass." Ac1 will then hand over his card to P for reading in either English or Latin.

The Leonine prayers are as follows:
_____    ________    ______    ________     ________      ________     _______    ____     ______
The Prayers after the Low Mass
Ave Maria
P: Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum. Benedicta tu in mulieribus, et benedictus fructus ventris tui, Jesus.
R: Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc, et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen. (three times)

Salve Regina
Salve Regina, Mater misericordiae. Vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad te clamamus exsules filii Hevae. Ad te Suspiramus, gementes et flentes in hac lacrimarum valle. Eja ergo, Advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. Et Jesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis post hoc exsilium ostende. O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria.
P: Ora pro nobis, sancta Dei Genitrix.
R: Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

P: Oremus. Deus refugium nostrum et virtus, populum ad te clamantem propitius respice; et intercedente gloriosa et immaculata Virgine Dei Genitrice Maria, cum beato Josepho ejus Sponso, ac beatis Apostolis tuis Petro et Paulo, et omnibus Sanctis, quas pro conversione peccatorum, pro libertate et exaltatione sanctae Matris Ecclesiae, preces effundimus, misericors et benignus exaudi. Per eumdem Christum Dominum nostrum. 
R: Amen.

Sancte Michael 
Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in praelio. Contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium. Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur. Tuque princeps militiae caelestis, Satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo divina virtute in infernum detrude. Amen.

P: Cor Jesu sacratissimum, 

R: Miserere nobis. (three times)

Hail Mary
P: Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
R: Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and at the hour of our death. Amen. three times)

Hail Holy Queen
Hail, holy Queen, Mother of mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve, to thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, most gracious Advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us, and after this our exile show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet virgin Mary.
P: Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R: That we be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

P: Let us pray. O God, our refuge and our strength, look down with favor upon Thy people who cry to Thee; and through the intercession of the glorious and immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of her spouse, blessed Joseph, of Thy holy apostles, Peter and Paul, and all the saints, mercifully and graciously hear the prayers which we pour forth to Thee for the conversion of sinners and for the liberty and exaltation of holy mother Church. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Prayer to St. Michael
St. Michael, the archangel, defend us in battle. Be our protection against the malice and snares of the devil. We humbly beseech God to command him. And do thou, O prince of the heavenly host, by the divine power thrust into hell Satan and the other evil spirits who roam through the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Invocation after Mass
P: Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.
R: Have mercy on us! (three times)
_____    ________    ______    ________     ________      ________     _______    ____     ______

Now that the Leonine prayers have been said, P will get up and go get the Chalice. Ac1 then will use this opportunity to fetch the biretta, and return with it to his standing spot. Look above for how to handle the biretta, before the Leonine prayers.
______       ________         ________           _____________   ________     __________    _____

P will come down with the chalice, between the two servers, and turn around to face the altar. If you remain in the sanctuary (as the sacristy door is in the sanctuary), the last couple of actions will be done in the sanctuary. If your exit is outside the sanctuary (past the altar rails), P and servers will walk down past the altar rails and turn around to face the center altar. I will diagram this last example, as well as the last couple of steps below in figure 11.
P will then extend his right hand to Ac1 for the biretta. Ac1 kisses the flat side of the biretta, then P's hand, and gives the item to him. After P dons the biretta, all will turn in the direction of the Sacristy. Should the direction be at the Gospel side, Ac1 will pass P and Ac2, and process ahead to the front of the exit procession line. This will be shown in figure 10. If the door is at the Epistle side, then Ac2 is the one bypassing the others to the front of the line. It all depends on your parish's sanctuary and body. Here`s an example in figure 11:

Figure 11: Exit Processions if Door to Sacristy is on the Gospel Side. (This is the setup for the Exit Procession at St. Lawrence the Martyr in Scarborough, ON, CAN)

The Mass is ended. Once the servers and P are in the sacristy, the servers kneel down in front of the crucifix and P gives the final prayer to them. Once done, they then proceed to take down the altar.

Brief Differences Between the One server and the Two server Mass (Adapted From How to Serve Low Mass and Benediction Back page)

Part of the Latin Mass
Single Server
Ac1/Epistle Side Acolyte
Ac2/Gospel Side Acolyte
At the Beginning of Mass
Receives biretta
Receives biretta
At the Epistle
Transfers the Missal
Transfers the Missal
At the Offertory
Presents the Wine AND water
Presents the wine
Presents the water
At the Lavabo
Washes priest’s hands and presents towel
Presents the towel
Washes priest’s hands
At the Sanctus
Rings bell for each sanctus
Rings bell for each sanctus
At the Hanc Igitur
Rings the bell
Rings the bell
At the Major Elevation
Rings the bell 3x and lifts center of P`s chausable
Rings the bell 3x and Lifts P`s chausable by right corner
Lift`s P`s chausable by left corner
At the minor elevation
Rings the bell
Rings the bell
At P`s the Domine Non Sum Dignus
Rings bell for each D.N.S.D.
Rings bell for each D.N.S.D.
After the Priest’s Communion
Pours the wine
Pours the wine
Pours the water
At the Changing of the Missal
Transfers the Missal
Transfers the veil
Transfers the Missal
If Missal is to be Transferred for Last Gospel
Transfers the Missal
Transfers the Missal
At/After the Last Gospel
Brings biretta
Brings biretta
Works Cited
Mary Immaculate Queen Center. Handbook for Altar Servers. Mary Immaculate Queen: Spokane, Washington, USA. 2007.
Fortescue, A.; O'Connell, J.B.; and Reid, A. The Ceremonies of the Roman Rite Described. Fifteenth Edition Revised and updated in the light of Pope Benedict XVI's Summorum Pontificum. Burns and Oates: London, UK. 2009.
O`Brien, William. How to Serve Low Mass and Benediction. Angelus Press: Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.A. 2011.


  1. Very interesting, although we differ slightly.Where can I find the prayers for (before? while?) vesting the cassok and the surplice, please?

    1. Hi Diabolik! Despite the oddity of your name here, welcome anyways to S.U.D! While there are no prayers for after Mass for the cassock and surplice, There are prayers you say before you vest.

      I put them in one of my "Latin Mass toolkit" posts I did at the start of my blog, here:

      Pax, Julian.