Friday, October 23, 2009

Requiem aternam....

I'm using my brother's wireless today, and I have lots of news. 

Firstly, They are having a high mass of requiem on All Souls Day, November 2nd at 7:00 PM. Tell your friends and spread the news!This'll be the first non-novus ordo requiem I'll have attended in about two or three years. I'm wondering if there will be unbleached candles.

Also, we're having a parish mission on the 26th-27th. The last one was great, Hopefully this year's preacher will be as good as the last one.

Last week I started my aspirancy with These Guys. I spent the weekend at the monastery. It was great, cold weather and a rather unfriendly pet cat notwithstanding.I was given a tour of both the monastery and S.Charles' seminary on City Line ave.  Both have wonderful libraries.

These Guys now have weekly solemn vespers using the Liber Usualis. I went on the feast of the Maternity of the B.V.M., and it was good, if a bit shaky. Somehow, I forgot to bring my Liber with me, but I'll bring it next time.

And speaking of chant,I learned some of the requiem propers and the propers for Christ the King. Both have rather simple introits, but the gradual of the requiem mass threw me off halfway through.

And getting back to the main topic, I have questions for anyone who might know the answers:

1) Is it permissible to have reliquaries on the altar during a sung requiem, or do they have to be removed? What about flowers?

2)Is the catafalque obligatory for requiems on all souls day, or is it just optional?

3)If not, do you still have the absolution after mass, even without the catafalque?

1 comment:

Paul Goings said...

We started using Latin at Vespers on the first Sunday in October. It's going to be shaky for a couple of months... That said, I think it's improving slowly. Mr Kunkel is actively recruiting for the new schola, and we hope to have a few new singers joining us over the next few weeks. A number of them are organists, and so we also hope to start having brief organ recitals afterwards on a regular basis.

As to your questions...

1. The altar should not be decorated for Masses of the Dead, so flowers and relics should be removed, if at all possible.

2. The catafalque is only needed if Absolution follows the Requiem Mass, and I don't believe that this is of obligation except at funerals.

3. Absolution cannot be given without a body or the catafalque. However, it is permissible to spread a black cloth on the floor, and perform the Absolution over that. (I believe that the cloth is sprinkled and incensed from the corner of the altar, rather than going around it, but I'm not certain.)

It should be noted that almost anything can be used as a catafalque; an ordinary table covered with the pall, for example. It need not be elaborate.

And congratulations on your aspirancy!