• Msgr. Pope has a reflection on the Memorial Acclamation here.

    It's an odd position to believe in the efficacy and potential beauty of the Ordinary Form while acknowledging the faulty construction that created it.
    Thanked by 2Vilyanor Salieri
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,224
    I agree with your assertion and also this one made by Monsignor Pope: “In this case, a new element borrowed from the Eastern Rites was introduced, but in a kind of minimized way that some argue respects the integrity of neither the Roman nor Eastern Rites.” I don’t think any option taken from the Divine Liturgy in some way does either.

    As far as copying the Divine Liturgy’s institution prayers, it would draw more attention to the consecration, whereas the current trend is to focus on the whole of the anaphora, which I think that the traditional Mass does better, perhaps paradoxically, as there is really only one unit including the Offertory, the Secret, the Preface, the Sanctus, and the Canon concluding in the doxology. The choral Benedictus might be split, but there is no interruption of the anaphora like in the Novus Ordo.

    Also, it is interesting that there is only one GR setting of the acclamation, and it is annoying that you can’t predict which will be used. I also find English settings poorly written on the whole.
  • VilyanorVilyanor
    Posts: 383
    I really like the idea of having the Benedictus here.
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,630
    The acclamations for the Mysterium Fidei, are for me, a matter of re-inventing the wheel. Various non-Roman liturgies had anitphons here that changed seasonally or for specific days: Ave Verum Corpus, O Salutaris Hostia (one verse only), Pie Jesu (for Requiems), etc. sung either in plainchant or as "Elevation Motets" would have been far preferable than the current acclamations, in my opinion. The "Mortem tuam" acclamation, taken so overtly from the Veneration of the Cross of Good Friday (ant. Crucem tuam), doesn't really seem to fit, at least not all year. (The other options don't have (Neo)Gregorian settings.)

    I dislike 'optionitis' as much as the next guy, but if there were say, four options:
    "O Salutaris" - Paschal-tide and through the year (Post. Pent, Post. Epiph.)
    "Ave Verum Corpus" - Advent, Christmas, BVM
    "Mortem tuam" - Lent
    "Pie Jesu" - Requiems

    that would be an improvement - and the form would come from those already existing, like Vatican II wanted.
  • I oppose the innovation of the Mysterium Fidei. It removed words from the consecration and assigned them to (nobody's ever quite sure). Then, instead of concentrating on God in front of them, the assembled faithful focus on the modern cantor, the microphone and other non-liturgical accretions.
  • johnmann
    Posts: 175
    It's hard to find a better example of innovation and rupture and to what end? The Mysterium Fidei was removed from the institution narrative because it breaks up the narrative but the new acclamation breaks up the whole EP much more viciously.
    Thanked by 1MatthewRoth
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,343
    Perhaps it was an unnecessary imitation of Eastern liturgies. The Maronite rite has a similar acclamation.

  • It may have been better not thought of. But, it having been thought of, perhaps, like the psalm responsory, it is not so much the thing itself as the pitiful music to which it is too often set. Here, attached, is the chant-like mode I one which we use at Walsingham. (It is my opinion that most, if not all, the ones in the missal are not really acclamations at all, but prolix commentary thrust into the canon.)
    1896 x 456 - 200K
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  • johnmann
    Posts: 175
    It was obviously an idea borrowed from the East but without any reason for inserting it in Rome. If someone can find any contemporaneous reason given, I'm genuinely curious. Even if you disagree with the other reforms of the OF, at least you can point to a reason beyond just "The East does it." At least with Rome's acceptance of the Eastern practice of an explicit epiclesis, there's a theological-ecumenical justification. It's laughable to think the new acclamation was an attempt at ecumenism. "Look Rome added an acclamation after the consecration! Full Communion is in sight!"
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,224
    The epiclesis bit is crazy too. The Orthodox accepted the Canon as is, even at Ferrara-Florence where Mark of Ephesus pushed to reject returning to full communion. But the Antiochenes and the ROCOR Western Rites incorporate it, and the historical shift has an undercurrent of spiting Rome, given both Protestant and Orthodox problems with the Roman church.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,343
    Sometimes I think that it was adopted in an attempt to give the people something audible and active to do at the Consecration.

    The form of the acclamation in the Maronite liturgy varies depending on which anaphora (eucharistic prayer) is used. Here are two:

    Celebrant: Whenever you eat this bread and drink from this up, you do so in memory of me until I come again.

    Congregation: O Lord, we remember your death, we witness to your resurrection, we await your second coming, we implore your compassion, and we ask for the forgiveness of our sins. May your mercy come upon us all.


    Celebrant: He then added this instruction, saying: each time you partake of these Mysteries you will recall my death, my burial, and my resurrection until I come.

    Congregation: O God, we remember your death, we witness that you rose from among the dead, we await your return. May your mercy come upon us all.


    The adoption of these into the modern Roman Rite failed to maintain some of the features of the anamnesis in the Maronite rite. Each one is associated with a particular anaphora, and each is preceded by a specific invocation by the priest. This provides a clear cue for the response of the congregation. In contrast, in the modern Roman rite, the people's response can be any of three options, independent of anything preceding. As a result, the people are often uncertain about which response is to be used, unless and until the priest begins to recite the response for them.
  • @chonak: Regarding that last point, is there any clear directive about which option should be used at any given time?
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,091
    I am not aware of any. But the Salvator Mundi option seems most specially appropriate for Paschaltide (Lent + Eastertide).
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,653
    Of the English versions in the Roman Missal I think the first one is the most congregational friendly. Option B requires the congregation to start on a different note than the celebrant's ending note, and Option C requires them to do an interval jump on the first syllable. Option A seems the most congregational-friendly of them all.
    Thanked by 1hilluminar
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,653

    The adoption of these into the modern Roman Rite failed to maintain some of the features of the anamnesis in the Maronite rite. Each one is associated with a particular anaphora, and each is preceded by a specific invocation by the priest. This provides a clear cue for the response of the congregation. In contrast, in the modern Roman rite, the people's response can be any of three options, independent of anything preceding. As a result, the people are often uncertain about which response is to be used, unless and until the priest begins to recite the response for them.


    The previous edition of the Canadian Sacramentary had different invocations for the non-Christ Has Died versions. However they were optional and most Canadians didn't know them and thus there would be even more confusion if the priest sang/said "Praise to You, Lord Jesus, firstborn from the dead!" or "We are faithful, Lord, to your command!" or "Christ is Lord of all ages!" after the consecration to try to get the faithful to sing the acclamation he wanted to hear.
  • Typically I will just have the cantor start this a cappella using one of the three chants from the Missal. This cues everyone else to then come in on the second half of the phrase and I instruct the cantor to use the same option for an entire season (rather than arbitrarily deciding on the spot). This is still not ideal, and I agree this part of the missal doesn't make any sense, but given the circumstances, it seems less disruptive than having the organ intone a contemporary setting which is simply a rehash of the Sanctus melody. I don't see the memorial acclamation as part of the Mass Ordinary, but rather part of the order of Mass dialogue such as The Lord be with you...and with your spirit.

    Same thing with the "Great Amen" which, in my opinion also doesn't constitute it's own musical movement in a Mass setting.
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,224
    I completely agree. Also the Alleluia...
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 2,064
    Having three (or more) possible responses to a this invitation/statement(?) is such an obvious absurdity that I do not understand how it has persisted, in a said Mass it so obviously cannot work as laid down.
    As to the Great Amen, I don't have the reference handy, was it Augustine who described the rafters shaking at the thunderous response of the people? if so what happened to it, not been seen or heard in these parts in living memory. Why did it not merit a splendid musical chant?
  • eft94530eft94530
    Posts: 1,574
    Why did it not merit a splendid musical chant?

    Because you do not need to sing a long duration chant for it to be loud.
    Back then congregations were paying attention.
    Today not so much.

    Nanny liturgy.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,124
    The problem is easily solved by using a polytextual motet. And in non-choir Masses a round could be used.
  • Earl Gray is right. The Memorial Acclamation is part of the Mass dialog. As such, when the priest chants "The Mystery of Faith" from the Roman Missal, the assembly should respond with the chant (A, B, or C) from the Roman Missal. Any fancier chant just sounds jarring.

    The same goes for the "Amen" at the end of the Doxology. It is a response to what the priest chants from the Roman Missal. Again, the Amen should only be the notes shown in the Roman Missal. Anything else sounds superfluous.

    Regarding the "Mystery of Faith", Chonak is correct that the Maronites have various acclamations in their Liturgy. However, in each of the acclamations a 3 fold formula is always used: there is a reference to the death, resurrection and coming again of the Lord in each acclamation. Only acclamation A in the Roman rite contains all 3 of these elements.

    Regarding the "Amen" at the end of the Doxology: I believe that it was Justin Martyr who remarked on the thunderous response of the faithful here. It was not Augustine. Regardless, I have read that there is no "Great" Amen in the Latin. Only Amen. It is simply an affirmation of what the priest has just previously chanted.

  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,395
    "Only acclamation A in the Roman rite contains all 3 of these elements."

    Doesn't Acclamation C contain all 3 of these elements? "Save us, Savior of the world, for by your Cross and Resurrection you have set us free." What else does "Cross" refer to other than the death of the Savior, as well as the manner of his death?
  • The death and resurrection of the Lord are mentioned in acclamation C. Where is the reference to His coming again, or His second coming?
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,395
    Oops, you're right. My bad.
  • VilyanorVilyanor
    Posts: 383
    What would it take for Ratzinger's suggestion to be made possible? I have a feeling that it's beyond the competency of the Ordinary to allow the Benedictus to take the place of the various acclamations, but is that the case? What about allowing the Sanctus to be split and having the choir and people sing the Benedictus while the priest says the acclamation?
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,091
    In the OF, the rubrics and GIRM 79(b) call for all to join in the Sanctus/Benedictus - priest very much included. That would have to be changed in order to accommodate preconciliar praxis.
  • VilyanorVilyanor
    Posts: 383
    What about just splitting it and using the Benedictus as the acclamation then? Everyone would be singing it… But am I right in thinking that substitution or reordering of mass texts is beyond the power of the local ordinary?
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,091
    Yes. Rome would have to approve that. It's not provided for in the OF rubrics or GIRM, and the Ordo treats the entire hymn as single unit.
    Thanked by 1Vilyanor