should priest recess after mass during Lent in silence?
  • sbgreen
    Posts: 7
    I know there are to be no organ preludes and postludes during Lent. Our parish does not sing a recessional hymn, so should the priest, deacons and altar boys recess in silence or to a chant?
  • I would say silence and singing would both be acceptable.
    Thanked by 2madorganist francis
  • sbgreen
    Posts: 7
    Can I get a survey of what all of you do in your parishes? Our parish has always had a postlude during Lent, which I won't do now.
  • in Advent & Lent we sing recessional unaccompanied.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 9,640
    No postludes - no preludes, either. We do have entrance, communion and a recessional hymn. No organ music except to accompany singing. What I call, to my priest's annoyance, pink Sunday allows for using the organ for other than singing. For Lenten Sundays other than "pink" no trumpets or full organ to match the nature of the season.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 6,418
    Silence here is golden.
  • We never do recessional hymns. I do quiet postludes for Advent and Lent... no preludes.
  • Carol
    Posts: 402
    Do you actually GET silence? I think of the postlude as an attempt to cover up the racket made by people talking in church on their way out of Mass.
    Thanked by 1youngcatholicgirl
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 9,640
    Someone in the congregation - notice I didn't say "assembly," - will inevitably have something to say to the person near them. It will be of such earth-shattering importance it can't wait until they reach the vestibule. But overall, it will be more quiet than usual in the building. You can't win them all.
    Thanked by 1Carol
  • No Entrance Hymn, only the GR Introit. Unaccompanied motets at Offertory and Communion. Only hymns are at Communion and Concluding, both accompanied but subdued.
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,452
    We do what we always do: process in and out to a hymn (the same hymn, so we can get all the verses in) accompanied by organ. We also use the organ in Lent to support anything we actually expect the PiPs to sing (the Ordinary, mostly). In Advent, I'll have the organ play parts that were originally for voices, but not any independent organ-specific accompaniment. In Lent, I generally program just chant, so I'm not temped to use the "support the Schola" loophole.
    Thanked by 1Richard Mix
  • Matthew
    Posts: 29
    Process in to the introit (in English, or Spanish, or Latin - depending on which mass of course) - recess in silence. No solo instrumental music of any kind except on Laetare Sunday. Masses in English, Spanish, and EF. Silence? Well, some Sundays it works, others it's like banana time at the monkey cage. We do put in the worship aid for people to remain silent until they are in the narthex. And the priests will mention this Sunday the need for silence after mass - which usually helps for the 1st couple of weeks.
  • rich_enough
    Posts: 721
    We don't have a "recessional hymn" either. We always sing the Marian antiphon of the season (in Lent, "Ave Regina Caelorum") a capella.
    Thanked by 1Joseph Mendes
  • Matilda
    Posts: 64
    I asked the pastor if I should cease postludes and preludes for Lent- he said no so I assume it will be business as usual- very quiet music for 15 minutes before church , a closing hymn followed by a postlude. I will choose quieter and probably more mournful music but we'll have it all until Holy Thursday, after that it will be mostly silent except for the soft support needed by the choir, until the Easter Vigil.
  • canadashcanadash
    Posts: 1,372
    We sing our four hymns with organ except for the end of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and until the Gloria on Holy Saturday.

    No preludes/postludes/cover the action music during Lent.
  • I accompany four hymns and Mass parts, and unless otherwise asked by the pastor, I won't continue to play the Offertory and Communion hymn after all the verses are done. No prelude or postlude (except for Laetare, of course).

    Do you actually GET silence? I think of the postlude as an attempt to cover up the racket made by people talking in church on their way out of Mass.


    Nope. Even when I have a postlude, the people just shout over my playing. Sad.
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen Carol
  • Incardination
    Posts: 550
    Can I get a survey of what all of you do in your parishes? Our parish has always had a postlude during Lent, which I won't do now.


    During non-penitential seasons, we have an accompanied hymn and / or other piece sung by choir before, with organ processional. Sometimes the procession enters a bit early while we are still singing, and we either finish the hymn or finish the verse and switch to organ processional. For the end, similarly - accompanied hymn followed by an organ postlude. ** "other piece" might be a litany, a motet, a chant vesper hymn, etc..

    During penitential seasons, we sing an unaccompanied piece (motet or chant) before with a hymn for the procession, typically accompanied. However, sometimes we simply sing Parce Domine or something similar a capella. Our recessional is an accompanied hymn. No preludes, postludes, or interludes except Laetare and Gaudete Sunday where everything as normal.

    Except for the summer when the choir is off, the Ordinary is unaccompanied. Propers are always unaccompanied.

    Some years ago, I had a pastor that basically "let the organist go" during penitential seasons - i.e. they weren't paid during Advent and Lent with the expectation that there was no organ at all - apart from possibly providing intonations. This made it understandably difficult to find an organist, and there were seasons (i.e. the entire choir season) where we had no organist for the better part, maybe only hiring a stand-in for feasts.

    For myself, personally, I think eliminating the organ entirely in Advent and Lent diminishes the effect of seeing the organ disappear during the Triduum. Certainly its use is minimal in penitential seasons but it is still has some presence until following the Gloria of Holy Thursday.
  • Marc Cerisier
    Posts: 394
    In my small, rural parish, no accompaniment of any sort for all of Lent. No music during the priest’s exit.
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,577
    Just applause?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 9,640
    I would say silence and singing would both be acceptable.


    Agreed. But no matter what the regulations might be, I can promise you some will take it to a ridiculous extreme. It never fails.

    After today's sermon full of bad puns, I wondered if we could help the priest out the door faster? LOL. I am kidding, of course. He's a good guy but the puns were a bit much.
  • PolskaPiano
    Posts: 84
    A recessional hymn isn't prescribed by rubrics. Our pastor prefers to recess in silence. I ring a low handbell.
  • PolskaPiano
    Posts: 84
    I should add, this is for lent. Other times of the year we do a recessional hymn
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 782
    A recessional hymn is not called for in the rubrics any time of the year, but one may be sung as a devotional practice. While an instrumental recessional may be appropriate the rest of the year, I find a simple chant, preferably unaccompanied, to be most effective. Such as: Stabat Mater (you could sing 3 verses each week so as to sing the entire hymn over the course of the season); Ave Regina Caelorum; Parce Domine; Attende Domine; some sort of seasonal ostinato refrain. If Latin is unwelcome, most of these are found in vernacular translations in most hymnals.
  • eft94530eft94530
    Posts: 1,559
    I asked the pastor if I should cease postludes and preludes for Lent

    Why is it necessary to ask permission to implement GIRM instructions?
  • We do not do any prelude or postludes during Lent (or Advent!). After the ite Missa est, we sing the Ave Regina Cælorum and then Father processes out in total silence. It is very stark and profoundly impactful. It really draws attention to the different moods of the liturgical seasons!
    Thanked by 2Viola CHGiffen
  • ViolaViola
    Posts: 274
    We do the same and I agree as to its impact.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • CCoozeCCooze
    Posts: 726
    We do not sing a recessional, the priest leaves in silence, but is preceded by an announcement that such is our custom.
    The announcement always seems so ridiculous, but our rector insists that everyone in attendance always knows why we do or don't do something..
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,013
    Ita infomercial est.