Sunday wedding

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: Through unusual circumstances, we have a wedding coming up that will be on a Sunday. What readings can you choose if you celebrate the Marriage rite during Mass on a Sunday in ordinary time? It seems from what I have  read, that we must use the readings for that Sunday (all three readings) but may substitute one reading from texts provided for the celebration of Marriage (nos, 144-187) which accompany the Ritual Mass “The Celebration of Marriage.” One of the readings must be “about marriage.” Does this sound correct? == A: Yes, if you are talking about a parish Mass. If you’re talking about a wedding …

Baptism during Lent

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: I have question about baptism during Lent: Outside of emergency situations, Can a baptism be done during Lent?  The situation is that we’ve been trying to get this baptism in before Lent but due to COVID Pandemic, travel restrictions etc. unable to do so.  Now the family is able to get everyone, parents and godparents together in March.  They really wanted to have the godparents in person rather than use a proxy.  Is it OK to do a baptism during Lent–it would be outside of Mass regardless of when it happens due to COVID.  Thanks! == A: Baptisms are allowed during Lent. …

Ordination in a pandemic

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: We have presbyteral ordinations scheduled this coming April and May.  How can we conduct the laying on of hands and the kiss of peace of the concelebrating priest to the candidates for ordination observing health protocols?  Do you recommend scrapping the gesture entirely or any recommendations as to its modification? == A: As with so many things, we are making some decisions that are not good for the liturgy, but that are good for charity. Out of caution for spreading the virus, our charity demands some changes in the liturgy. In this matter, your bishop should decide, but I …

Church postures

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: I read your pod frequently and share them with the priests and deacons at the parish. During Covid 19, we have been having our masses in the school gym and the parish hall due to our Church under renovations and additional masses needing to be added. This Sunday we had a celebration with our Bishop of blessing of the Church which was wonderful and very inspiring. Anyway, as we now move back into the Church, I am wondering if you could recommend a resource for Church postures that would be helpful to share with the parish community?  Being in …

Translation of the Agnus Dei

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: Two questions related to the translation of the Agnus Dei.  1. The Latin has “peccata mundi” – which is plural; yet the source text (John 1:29) is singular (including in the Clementine and neo-Vulgates). Why the difference / change?  2.  It makes sense that in the English Missal it is also translated in the plural (since the liturgical source text is plural)… but in the Spanish Missal it is in the singular. Why?  Thanks…. == 1. To answer that adequately, we’d have to ask the author of the Liber Pontificalis, who ascribed the origins of the Lamb of God to Pope Sergius …

Dismissal

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: I noticed that in the Book of Blessings liturgy for distribution of ashes there is no dismissal. Is that omission intentional?  If so, what is the reason for that omission? Thanks. == A: It’s probably intentional. Many of the blessings in that book end without a dismissal. Maybe the question is not, “Why isn’t it there,” but “Why is it there at the end of the Mass?” Having fed on the eucharist, the Body of Christ goes forth into the world on mission. When the blessing takes place apart from Mass, the missionary imperative is not so integral.

Liturgical history

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: I have been trying to help my volunteers understand the history of the Church.  I am amazed at how much misinformation there is online.  Here are the two questions that I have been trying to figure out. 1.  Was the introduction of the Novus Ordo mass an attempt to make the mass more like the mass of the early Church?  I read something by Pope Benedict that infered this was true, but he also said they weren’t trying to recreate the early-early mass (pre Justin Martyr). 2.  Did the Tridentine mass start at the council of Trent?  Was this …

Prayer of the Faithful

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: What do you think of the practice of the Prayers of the Faithful being read from the pews, from within the body of the congregation, rather than at the front or the sanctuary ? == A: I treat the location of the petitions in my book, Let Us Pray. Several paragraphs in the GIRM call for them to be delivered from the ambo or another suitable place, though the introduction to the Lectionary for Mass just mentions the ambo. GIRM 138 says the petitions are announced “while facing the people.” So, are the pews “a suitable place”? It depends partly on …

Inserts for the Eucharistic Prayer

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: Are the inserts for the Eucharistic Prayer used ONLY when the Ritual Mass is celebrated… or whenever the sacrament is celebrated, no matter the Mass used (for example, if the Mass of the Day is used)? == A: The rubrics aren’t clear on this point, but I see no problem using those inserts on days when the Ritual Mass cannot be used. There’s a bigger issue with the three main presidential prayers and the preface. If your bishop celebrates confirmation in a parish on Wednesday of Holy Week, for example, he cannot use the collect for confirmation because that …

Music in Lent

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: Thanks for your guidance in matters liturgical. I’m familiar with the directive in GIRM 313 that, with the exceptions of Laetare Sunday, Solemnities, and Feasts “in Lent, the playing of the organ and musical instruments is allowed only in order to support the singing.”  Our diocesan office distributed a lengthy list of organ pieces for Ash Wednesday and the Sundays in Lent. So, I’m wondering what your thoughts are regarding rubrics vs. reality? Any insight is greatly appreciated.  == A: Many years ago I was an occasional organist at the cathedral where I now serve as pastor. Each week …