Saturday, February 24, 2007

Liturgy question-box: Cope for Stations? Ceremony for Holy Thursday?

This is the sort of question I suspect I might know rather easily, if I took the time to dig it out; but alas, there are some questions one never gets around to investigating. This is one, for me.

Does a cleric wear a cope leading Stations? If so, what color?

Here's another question, a little more significant.

On Holy Thursday evening, the Mass of the Lord's Supper begins with the tabernacle empty; the Blessed Sacrament is removed, beforehand, to another, suitable location.

Question: has anyone a recommendation on the proper ceremony -- if any -- for the actual removal?

Last year, after a Wednesday evening Mass, I invited parishioners to join me in a low-key but reverent procession to our chapel, where the Eucharist would be reserved. This year, I plan to do the same at one parish. At the other, the place of reservation (as in many parishes) is a tabernacle in the sacristy. I was planning to have prayer -- None (mid-afternoon prayer) with some priests for dinner, and I thought about taking the Blessed Sacrament to the sacristy after that. But again, I don't know of any ceremony or ritual for this.

Any references to recommend?


Terry said...

Father - just me here.
When I was little, the priest usually wore a cassock and surplice with a stole for stations.

As for the transference of the Eucharist, a cope and hummeril veil was worn, the Pange Lingua was sung, or the transference was done silently, with lighted candles, and reposed in the tabernacle in the sacristry. In the monastery it was always done in silence, with a brief period of adoration.

Hopefully, an expert will comment.

There must be rubrics however, from the old ritual.

Sharon said...

Father I would really recommend that you purchase 'Ceremonies of the Modern Roman Rite'revised edition and 'Ceremonies of the Liturgical Year' by Msgr Peter Elliott.

From ‘Ceremonies of the Liturgical Year’ by Msgr Peter Elliott

The Way of the Cross
119. …A priest or deacon wears an alb, or soutane (cassock) and surplice, and a violet or red stole (red us used on Palm Sunday and Good Friday). A violet or red cope may be worn for a solemn celebration or if the devotion is part of a longer para-liturgy. It is customary to sing the verses of the “Stabat Mater” or another appropriate hymn while proceeding from station to station…[at my parish we sing one verse between stations as father is walking from each station.

The transference described in ‘Ceremonies of the Liturgical Year’ are really elaborate and would take me ages to type so I will tell you how we do it in my parish using excerpts from CLY.

In my parish what is done is very similar to Terry's post except that the priest was preceeded by a crucifix bearer and an altar server with a thirible who incenses the pyx which is not visible under the humeral veil. The congregation follow the priest to the Church Hall where the altar of repose is set up.

A bigger church I have attended has the altar of repose on a side altar and the pyx is carried under a canopy around the church.

Hope this helps

'Fish Eaters' would probably have the way it was done from the old ritual.

Father if you would care to give me an email address my son could probably tell me how to scan the pages onto the computer and send them to you.

Father Martin Fox said...


The first answer is very helpful, and I will have to get Elliot's "ceremonies" -- i have the other book already, and use it often.

If I may ask, are you describing the transfer that happens before the Holy Thursday Mass? Or after? My question concerned before...

Sharon said...

Note to self, 'Read the post and don't just skim it!' Apologies father.

In CLY No 188. The Blessed Sacrament is privately removed from the tabernacle in the church before the Mass begins and taken to a "place of reservation", that is, a tabernacle or safe in the sacristy or in an oratory or chapel apart from the church. [We use the sacristy safe] The Hosts reserved here will provide an extra supply for Holy Communion on Good Friday. A lamp should burn in this place, but adoration is not maintained here.

Hope that helps.