Friday, April 7, 2017

The Mass of the Presanctified

On New Liturgical Movement, Gregory DiPippo has written a brilliant piece on the Mass of the Presanctified which was the Roman Church's primary liturgical celebration on Good Friday before Pius XII's horrific changes to the liturgies of Holy Week in 1955.

"The celebrant wears black vestments as for a Requiem. The deacon and subdeacon, however, wear black folded chasubles, the traditional vestments of penitential seasons, which are not used at a Requiem; indeed, black folded chasubles are only used at this service. (Where they are not available, the deacon and subdeacon serve in albs and maniples, the deacon with a stole.) On these days, the Church wishes us to experience the Paschal mystery, not as a mere commemoration, but as something through which we ourselves live, accompanying the Savior. Good Friday is a day of deepest mourning, one that excludes the use of the vestments of joy, the dalmatic and tunicle, which at a Requiem speak of the hope of the Resurrection. On Good Friday, this hope is not in any way anticipated; we ourselves feel the desolation which Christ’s disciples experienced, the better to come to the joy of the Resurrection on Easter."
-The Theology of the Mass of the Presanctified 

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