Palm Sunday Customs - The Poll!
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 1,371
    Hey all: time for a strange poll. Trying to gauge opinions on a subject I've been pondering for a while. (I'm sure you'll be able to figure out what.)


    Which Mass do you usually sing for/attend?
    A. OF
    B. EF (1962)
    C. EF (pre-1962)
    D. Other (Byzantine, Dominican, Ordinariate)

    Do you by chance, attend more than one rite?
    A. Yes
    B. No

    For those who attend or have attended the 1962 EF Palm Sunday: does your parish follow the missal by the book for this Sunday? (i.e., no door knocking ceremony, no Wailing tone, etc.)
    A. Yes
    B. No

    For those who have celebrated both pre- and post- 1962 missal - do you find any logistic advantage to either the celebration or omission of customs celebrated in the pre-1962 missal?

    Thank you!
  • Incardination
    Posts: 480
    1. B
    2. B
    3. A

    4. Did the pre for a number of years, then the post. Was very nostalgic for the pre... until I wound up doing them again for a year or two. Was glad to return to the post. I do think there are some things that are better in the pre, but I personally prefer the post now.

    The one thing I would do if I had my druthers would be Tenebrae anticipated in the evening rather than the morning of. It makes no sense to extinguish the candles when it is day out.

    Logistically, Holy Saturday in pre can be a bit much. My first Holy Week, everything was done to the nth degree with all bells and whistles. Started at 5:00 AM and went to 10:00 AM. I've never liked the custom in the pre of effectively ending Lent at noon on HS.
  • ronkrisman
    Posts: 1,298
    And the results of this supremely unscientific poll are meant to demonstrate what?
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 1,371
    Fr. Krisman,

    Short answer: I'm nosy.

    Long answer: I'm curious as to whether people find certain customs to be more "helpful" or not to your choir. For example - Duffy mentions in Stripping of the Altars that there would be various stops during the old English procession where priest, clerks, choir, and faithful would kneel and sing certain specified antiphons (for example, if memory recalls, Ave Rex Noster would be sung inside as the rood screen curtain was dropped - don't quote me on that, please!)

    It seems to me certain of the expunged customs are quite helpful to a choir that is walking and singing at the same time. Perhaps it's just me, but having to fit in Gloria Laus et Honor at some undesignated time, then singing Ingrediente as the congregation enters the church - no real definition as to when exactly that starts! - it just seems haphazard. Having spots in the procession where everyone can stop and catch their breath - literally as well as figuratively - seems easier to program music for than having the procession just being one long continuous action.

    I'm overthinking this, I know. I know the ancient church wasn't consciously thinking about the practicality of this or that tradition. But the liturgy immemorial has a way of doing things very intentionally, and that can provide stream-lining of sorts, despite what people after V2 might say.

    Also, I'm just curious to see if there's anyone out there in OF land who has done a procession. Whenever I celebrated Palm Sunday in the new rite, palms were handed out and that's it. No one walked. Wondered if I was the exception or the rule. And how other liturgical traditions do it, if at all.
    Thanked by 1Jeffrey Quick
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,501
    The ability of a parish to have a procession that begins outdoors is limited by logistical concerns:

    1. Climate and weather (a lot of the USA experiences a continental climate that is normally harsher than that of much of Catholic Europe; more of an issue when Easter is early, but it underlies cultural patterns over the long term - Americans, unlike Russians, are not much of a processing people in winter - but we (generically; certainly not me individually) will sit in place in stadiums to watch silly games while eating/drinking and then rush to leave early. Cf. Edith Wharton's "Age of Innocence.")

    2. How many people and how many doors.

    3. How conducive is the outside location to a procession. Suburban church parking lots would be, well, forlorn. Different from a small urban street that might be closed off to car traffic with a city permit (but you do need that permit).

    I've been a regular congregant in a few OF parishes.oratories that do normally start the procession outside, weather permitting. But I can't say that's the local (Boston-area) norm, as it were.
  • Incardination
    Posts: 480
    In situations for PS procession specifically, I've seen lots of different things in the EF depending on circumstances. The only time I've not seen the procession done in the EF is when the parish had both EF and OF and the EF only had the Mass of Palm Sunday with no additional ceremonies.

    For inclement weather, I've seen two variations - one involves lots of umbrellas :) and the other involves doing the classic figure 8 internal to the church.

    In the pre, the choir enters the church in advance and sings / finishes Gloria Laus from inside against the congregation outside. The subdeacon (or celebrant if not solemn) "knocks on the church door" with the foot of the processional cross. The door opens and the choir starts the Ingrediente.

    In the post, that is all done away with. If doing Ingrediente in chant, that's easy enough to transition as procession enters church. We often do an arrangement in parts, in which case I have the choir form in the back of church before starting Ingrediente. It then covers the procession's entry into the sanctuary.

    This year, our MC has asked that we enter early through the side door - continuing the Gloria Laus until we are in place - then do the Ingrediente part arrangement as procession enters church doors. For myself, I think the rubrics intend for a degree of flexibility especially where choir logistics are involved.

    My earliest recollection of OF Palm Sunday was that palms were blessed and distributed in another location (the school) and the parish processed with the palms to the church. I know of one EF parish that will be doing that this year.
  • MichaelDickson
    Posts: 374
    I've done the procession. OF. So we'd sing the Hosanna filio David. Then blessing of the palms. Then procession with antiphons, Gloria Laus, Ingrediente, as you say. Our priest passionately (no pun intended) hated any 'entrance music' to continue after he had reached his chair, so we were always very cognizant of good timing, and yes, timing is especially tricky on this occasion. Inevitably, some things get abbreviated. I do agree that some 'signposts' along the way could prove useful and might tighten things up a bit.
  • I have been attending/singing/assisting at an OF parish for many years. We used to do a solemn procession about 15+ years ago but have not in recent memory. This year, our priest wants to bring back the solemn procession. Weather will be a big factor, and we will play that by ear. It will take some logistical juggling, but our elementary school is detached from the church building, so that will be where the procession will begin. Coordinating with the choir and ushers, and making sure the faithful know where and when to be is the next challenge. This is proving a bit challenging to put together, but my hope (as MC) is that it all runs smooth and will enrich the liturgy!
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,013
    My impression is that most of the liturgical descriptions we have from the English church pre-reformation relate to specific cathedrals. I have seen it said that Sarum had many processions because the Cathedral has a cloister.
    Aside - can anybody point me to sources of information on how these rubrics were adapted for parish churches. I have recently come across an Exeter canon exempting benefices worth less than £33 per year from acquiring vestments for deacon and sub-deacon. (£33 more than ten times the stipend of a chaplain in the Temple Church in London, or five times the wages of a master carpenter)
  • dad29
    Posts: 1,595
    *Cough*....Perhaps I've missed something, but does "1962 Rite" also mean "1952 Rite"?
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,409
    Procession is done inside, with Schola in the loft and organ for Gloria Laus. Does anybody else find that the chant falls into a kind of march rhythm?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 9,466
    We typically have the congregation gather outside for the pre-entrance rites, then priest, deacons and people enter the church. I am in the loft with a few singers to get the entrance hymn started. However, if the weather turns bad, we go to plan "b" and the pre-entrance is done in the vestibule.
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 1,371
    Right, Dad. You know what I mean. I was going to specify between non-Bugnini and Quasi-Bugnini but that's not entirely fair to the rites are '55, I think.

    Jeff - I've actually steered clear of using the prescribed chants in the Liber for precisely the opposite reason - they don't fall into a regular sort of marching cadence. Instead, we're singing a few right before we begin moving (Occurrunt and Cum Angelis) and we might use one of the other ones (Ave Rex Noster) for Offertory. We're saving the regular hymns for the procession itself.

    Charlie - do you have any recollections of how they do it in the East? Is it even a thing there?
  • dad29
    Posts: 1,595
    Well.....things are in motion, as they say.

    Seems that FSSP has permission to use the pre-'62 Holy Week rituals. Saw that news yesterday. At this time, I have NOT seen a similar announcement from ICK.
    Thanked by 1StimsonInRehab
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 9,466
    We use pussy willows instead of palms. Was it palms in 19th-century Russia? It was not.
    Palms did not grow in 19th-century Russia and still don't. It's too cold. We bring flowers and decorate profusely with them. The willows are blessed and we take some home to keep all year. Fasting is modified and fish is permitted. It is called Flower Sunday or Flowery Sunday in many of the eastern churches. Here is the ultimate in blessing of the willows. The east operates on the principle that less is more, but more is better.
  • I was in Belgium for Palm Sunday once, and the church where I went used what appeared to be cuttings from a box hedge. They were oddly small and leafy for one who is accustomed to palms (and lives where they grow by nature), but Christ was worshipped just the same.
  • PolskaPiano
    Posts: 76
    My last church was quite small (previously an Assembly of God church). The vast majority of parishoners were elderly. This was OF. The pastor did the simple entrance as prescribed in the (assuming) Post 1962 missal.

    This is my first PS at my new job. I was told that in the past, the parish processed through the building, which includes a large hallway and parish center, to the church. To my knowledge, only some hymns were sung- no chanted antiphons. This year there is a new pastor and he is doing a quasi-procession. Only he and the alter servers will process, however, they will start from the front left of the church- in front of the choir- and process up and down the various aisles until they reach the front right side of the church. The people will stay in the pews. It is an interesting hybrid of both the simple form (people in the pews) and the actual procession.
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 1,371
    Polska, I've been at a parish where they do the aisle processing. I know it's a very reasonable solution. There's just that part of me (the same part always bugging my teacher in school to let us have class outside today "because it's so nice") that feels cheated.

    Seems that FSSP has permission to use the pre-'62 Holy Week rituals.

    Indeed; I have the luck to be singing at one of the Fraternity parishes which has permission. I'll actually go from singing there in the morning to direct the choir for the diocesan TLM that evening. A glutton for liturgical punishment, yours truly - but I do love this Sunday.