The following article was written for the May 5th, 2019 bulletin:
Desiring always to give our best to the Lord with grateful hearts, beginning today the use of musical instruments and the degree of chanting in Sabbath Masses will change. We are further diversifying the Sabbath Masses in various ways, e.g., piano will be the primary, if only, instrument at the Saturday Vigil and Sunday 12 noon Masses. With the minor exceptions of major events or solemnities like Christmas and Easter, the changes outlined below will become standard moving forward. We hope this variety helps you in your life situations and pieties to better anticipate and participate in the Mass and to understand the expectations each of its expressions asks of us.
Missa Lecta “Read Mass”: Sundays at 8 a.m. – Simplest Form
Gluten-Free Chalice: Yes
Chanted Parts of the Mass: This Mass is almost completely spoken. Singing and music are kept to a minimum and only happen 3 times in this Mass: the Alleluia before the Gospel; the Holy, Holy; and the final doxology of the Canon (“Through Him and with Him and in Him…”). This Mass is quiet and simple.
Standard Masses w/ Piano: Saturdays at 5 p.m.; Sundays at 12 noon – Simpler Form
Primary Instrument: Piano. Primary Vocal Style: Cantor. Gluten-Free Chalice: Yes
Chanted Parts of the Mass: Building on the few things sung at the Missa Lecta, this Mass includes the additions of customary hymns and the chanting of basic Mass parts, the Responsorial Psalm, the Gloria, and the introductory and final rites of Mass. The word “piano” means soft so the accompaniment with only piano creates a softer or lighter ambience for this Mass.
High Mass w/ Organ: Sundays at 5 p.m. – Fuller Form
Primary Instrument: Organ. Primary Vocal Style: Cantor. Gluten-Free Chalice: No, unless requested in the sacristy before Mass
Chanted Parts of the Mass: Building on those elements included in the Standard Masses w/ Piano, this Mass includes additions like the chanting of priestly prayers (opening prayer or collect; prayer over the gifts; and prayer after communion), and the Lord, Have Mercy. This Mass utilizes the organ to lend power and grandeur to our worship: “In the Latin Church the pipe organ is to be held in high esteem, for it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendor to the Church’s ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man’s mind to God and to higher things” (Sacrosanctum Concilium (from Vatican II), ¶120; cf General Introduction of the Roman Missal, n. 393).
Solemn High Mass: Sundays at 10 a.m. – Fullest Form
Primary Instrument: Organ. Primary Vocal Style: Choir. Use of Incense: Yes. Communion under Both Species: Yes. Gluten-Free Chalice: Yes
Chanted Parts of the Mass: Building on those elements included in all of the other Masses, this Mass is the fullest expression of liturgical praise and worship. This Mass includes additions like the use of incense to immerse our senses, the singing of the entire choir (in season), and the distribution of both species of Holy Communion. It also includes the additional chanting of the preface prayer, the Lord’s Prayer with its introduction and embolism, and sometimes the Gospel itself or the Eucharistic Prayer on solemn feasts, e.g., Christmas and Easter. This is the most majestic expression of our Divine Liturgy.