Swings of the thurible

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: Regarding your post on the number of swings of the thurible https://paulturner.org/swings-of-the-thurifer/, I ran across this article online https://dcgb7f.wordpress.com/tag/incensation/ and wonder what you think.


A: I find this argument compelling. I was unaware of these clarifications from the Sacred Congregation of Rite between 1862 and 1900. These show that going into the reformed liturgy of the 1960s, the word ductus meant a double swing, and the word ictus meant a single swing.

This helps explain why I continue to see double swings of the thurible in liturgies at the Vatican. The visual evidence supports this historical evidence.

So I will revise my opinion. I believe that when GIRM 277 calls for three swings of the thurible before “the Most Blessed Sacrament, a relic of the Holy Cross and images of the Lord exposed for public veneration, the offerings for the Sacrifice of the Mass, the altar cross, the Book of the Gospels, the paschal candle, the Priest, and the people,” it means three double swings.

When it calls for “single swings” of the altar, it obviously means a series of single swings.