Sunday, December 25, 2005

Midnight Mass

As promised, here are my impressions of the Midnight Mass at the Cathedral. The Bish knows how to do it right. Incense, old carols, and an organ. That's nice. And for the most part it was a good Mass.

But I have two little quibbles ...

But I have two little quibbles. First, why do people feel the need to leave the pulpit and walk down to "chit chat" with us? The celebrant -- be he Pope, bishop, or priest -- is not the focus; the Eucharist is. Ok, so the Oprah approach annoys me, and it doubly annoys me when it's a bishop.

But then the Bishop changed the words of humility, at least the bit that the celebrant introduces. I didn't see anything in GIRM to suggest he could, or anything in my Missal. But I also don't have access to all the documents. Still, my impression from reading GIRM is that the words are prescribed and must come from the Gospel. Even if it is somewhere permitted, what's wrong with the words of humility as we have them?

This is the Lamb of God
who takes away the sins of the world.
Happy are those who are called to his supper.

Lord, I am not worthy to receive you,
but only say the word and I shall be healed.

Isn't that lovely on its own? And that's not just something a liturgical committee came up with, the bolded bit (the bit we say as a whole) is the Centurion's words to Christ (see Matthew 8,8).

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