Why are there 3 options for the Memorial Acclamation?
  • Hey yall,

    Why are there 3 options for the Memorial Acclamation?
    Are they suppose to be rotated per liturgical day/season?
    And does anyone sing them in Latin?

    Actually to be frank, the memorial acclamation just confuses me, because to my understanding, it isn't present in the EF but is in the OF?

    Can anyone shed some more light on this?

    Thank you!
  • Quite correct - it is not in the EF.

    My understanding (I'm EF), is that they are options just like the various options for the Canon, to be chosen as desired, without special intent for seasonal use.

    Our sister parish (OF in a variety of forms) uses the Latin, particularly for a Latin OF ad orientem.

    EDIT: ... should have made clear that the sister parish doesn't ALWAYS use the Latin version, just on occasion, esp. when it is the Latin OF. They also have a German OF (where I'm guessing it would be in German!) and an English OF where it would most frequently be English, but might be Latin from time to time. In my actual parish, it is always English, because the OF is always English.
  • GambaGamba
    Posts: 186
    There’s no rhyme or reason to which you pick; entirely the choice of the priest.

    Only the first (“We proclaim”/“Mortem tuam”) has been officially set to chant; I believe it is based on the Good Friday antiphon “Crucem tuam adoramus”. The rest are included in the Latin Roman Missal, but not set to music.
  • These choices - of penitential rite, of canon, of MA, etc., are there to give people the feeling that they have something to do, have made an important personal decision, have made the liturgy 'really their own', and that they are tailoring a liturgy for the 'needs' of their 'very unique' parish community.

    (Does this satire really need to be in purple?)
  • The rest are included in the Latin Roman Missal, but not set to music.
    I've seen music settings for all three...
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  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,799
    The memorial acclamation was added to the Mass at the 1969 liturgical reform. A similar feature exists in the Maronite liturgy, so perhaps the Roman reformers were imitating it. Unfortunately, they didn't set up a logical procedure to indicate which acclamation the people are supposed to say or sing; the priest's text does not provide a cue.
  • Pianist,

    In all seriousness, the options are there so that there will be options. In this manner, the stable form of ritual will be..... not stable. Someone worked out (perhaps more than one person has done the calculations) that there are (quite literally, not hyperbolically) thousands of accurate ways to pray this form of the Mass, according to the books in force. This doesn't happen through clumsiness, nor does it happen through oversight. If you can stomach it, read Bugnini's Reform of the Liturgy 1948-1975 The conclusion is inescapable.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    As Bugnini's book makes clear, it was introduced to make use of the words Mysterium fidei. These words are an intrusion into what are otherwise biblical accounts of the words of institution of the Eucharist, by the synoptic Gospels and St Paul. The revisers suggested dropping them completely, the Pope (St Paul VI) insisted that they be retained.
    There have been previous discussions on this forum https://forum.musicasacra.com/forum/discussion/14334/memorial-acclamation-questions/p1 As that shows the Poles have been allowed a solution to the absurdity of a congregation being expected to make a response without knowing what the response should be. ICEL proposed something similar in English, but were ignored (or slapped down).
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  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,445
    Frankly, the Memorial Acclamation is probably the most awkward and pointless aspect of the Pauline Missal. It doesn't work smoothly, ever. It is an intrusion into the Canon, worse, I think, than the inclusion of Mysterium Fidei into the consecration formula for the chalice--which should not have been touched in the first place; there is no conceivable reason why the people need to make any kind of response after the consecration; especially considering that the Canon itself is one prayer; it is the Amen after the doxology which signifies the people's assent (if that's the right word) to what has happened. The M.A. needs to be expunged from the Missal as soon as an Editio Typica Quarta is proposed by the CDW.
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  • Now that the USCCB Spanish missal has the option for the priest to use a specific introduction to each of the memorial acclamations, I wonder if that will eventually make its way over to the English missal...
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  • http://www.usccb.org/prayer-and-worship/la-santa-misa/upload/aclamacion-memorial.pdf

    Actually, this doesn’t appear to be *optional*; it appears that the only way to use the 2nd or 3rd options is to use a prescribed variant of the introduction.

    It would be better if these changes were made in the Latin edition and then propagated “naturally” out to all of the vernaculars. But we’d have to have bishops willing to live by that logic rather than doing their own thing.
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  • CatherineS
    Posts: 199
    After 7 years of frustration, being utterly unable to guess which response to use, I finally asked my deacon friend how to know, since it appeared that everyone else in a given congregation knew what to say. He said 'Even we (at the altar) don't know what the congregation will say. They just say whatever they want.'
  • dhalkjdhalkj
    Posts: 46
    In the reform discussions, beside the problem of the mysterious interpolation Mysterium fidei, there was also the long standing habit of singing Benedictus qui venit at this point of the mass which was the elevation and seemed to need to have some music to adore God by. So they suggested some alternate musical items (which the priest is not supposed to participate in). They are suggestions of suitable choir anthems for adoration which has faded in our experience of the mass because of the restoration of communion. The enthusiastic adoption of this innovation is noteworthy but we could hope that by the time of the next reform it will not be thought necessary to retain it. On the other hand experience shows that once things are in, it's almost impossible to get them out again.
  • WGS
    Posts: 227
    My understanding is that in Canada (at least in that country, and I don't know if the practice continues) the celebrant had a differently worded introduction for each of the three standard Memorial Acclamations. This practice would give a proper clue to the choir and congregation.

    This would be in contrast to our assistant pastor some 30 or 40 years ago who would vigorously announce: "Let us proclaim the mystery of faith using memorial acclamation.....(wait for it) TWO" or whatever number he would choose. I think his intention was to thwart the efforts of the organist and choir.
  • canadashcanadash
    Posts: 1,404
    This would be in contrast to our assistant pastor some 30 or 40 years ago who would vigorously announce: "Let us proclaim the mystery of faith using memorial acclamation.....(wait for it) TWO" or whatever number he would choose. I think his intention was to thwart the efforts of the organist and choir.


    Reminds me of a priest who would improvise:
    "AND TOGETHER WE SAY: Through him, with him...."

    It was very difficult to for the congregation to unlearn that.
  • m_r_taylor
    Posts: 64
    We just do one, and stick to it.

    Also, I have steadily become more uncomfortable with saying it at all. I must because I am involved with the church's music, but at the holiest of holy moments, the great mystery of mysteries, as a Latin Catholic I feel compelled to be silent yet instead am asked to make sounds. And I don't know about the history of it or such, but I began to find it especially difficult to accept once I saw the traditional Roman Rite words of institution. "Mysterium fidei " . . . then we join in. But I don't want to feel like I'm joining in the consecration. I want to be silent, and adore.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,051
    I use "A" because it is closer to "mortem tuam." I don't use the other two. I know some of our purists will rend their mantillas in grief because it is there, but I am not disturbed one way or the other over the Memorial Acclamation. Legitimate authority - you know that authority some of you appeal to when it says what you like - has decided we will do it, so I do. That decision was above my pay grade. So be it.
  • because “Christ has died…” has been abrogated
    Thanked by 2Kathy CharlesW
  • When I am doing a mass, high or sung, all of the mass flows as a seamless garment from one item to the next. a continuum of thought - except the MA, which I have consciously to remember when to 'stick it in'. It is a jarring, detracting, and unwelcome (and conscious) intrusion into the sacred canon.

    At the very moment in the mass at which one is struck dumb, speechless at the ineffable miracle one is required to make an utterance in mere words what no words, only silence, can express.
    The continuity of the Eucharistic Prayer is broken.
  • PaxMelodious
    Posts: 278
    Mountain, molehill, much.
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • toddevoss
    Posts: 93
    I think a parish should just pick one and always use it. The history as others have noted is because liturgical scholars such as Jungmann genuinely couldn't explain how Mysterium Fidei got into the words of Institution. Fair enough. But then the reformers thought - we have to make this "make sense" and fit into our Bauhaus box - and decided to transform it into a pseudo -Eastern rite "acclamation". I say they should have just let the Mystery of Faith be a "Mystery" of the faith. I like inexplicable but suggestive mysteries. But I also agree with Charles -they had the authority to create it so I just sing it in all prayer-fullness. I hope one day the Church uses that same authority to restore the Mysterium Fidei to its former place and its former "mysteriousness"
  • What Jungmann couldn't explain, he should have left well enough alone.
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  • Too bad the response can't just be omitted. But we might as well get rid of the Novus Ordo anyway.
  • I think it's Chesterton -- but I can't find it -- who said that, before removing a fence post, the property owner should ask why it was put there in the first place. I would add that he should leave it there unless he had urgent cause to remove it, but even that wouldn't have stopped the Vandals who invaded the sanctuary.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    We may not know who inserted it, but it was around 450AD.
    English Standard Version Deuteronomy 19:14
    “You shall not move your neighbor’s landmark, which the men of old have set, in the inheritance that you will hold in the land that the LORD your God is giving you to possess.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,862
    I like the way the Spanish cues have been arranged so that everyone has a veto over No.'s 2, 3 & 4.

    We also stick with "We proclaim …" in all seasons. A remarkable number of young and visiting priests in our diocese seem never to have gotten the mi-sol-la memo, so I'm frequently bucking a near occasion to respond "Christ has died …".
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,445
    FWIW, our go-to since 2011 is "Save us, Savior"; however, since 2017 I have used "We proclaim your death" during Advent & Lent because the "new guy" (it's actually been three years, now), uses the Roman Canon in Latin occasionally, at which we use, always, "Mortem tuam" (because it hath music). Of the three, I much prefer "Salvator Mundi/Save us, Savior" for the M.A., because (1) it has a historical precedent as an elevation chant in the EF Carmelite Rite, and (2) because it is a prayer to Christ, immolated upon the altar, rather than simply us talking about what we do.

    Had I my druthers, the Elevation Chant would be vs. 1 of "O Salutaris", except at Requiems, when it would be "Pie Jesu". (These are common to the Cistercian Rite, the Neo-Gallican Rites, and many others. Why they weren't considered, even though they are well known, is beyond mortal comprehension.)
    Thanked by 2tomjaw toddevoss
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,781
    Just to note: in the Ordinary Form, the elevation or raising occurs during the concluding doxology of the Eucharistic Prayer - the rubrics indicate a showing at the two points in the Institution Narrative. They are different gestures.
  • @Salieri, would you happen to have music for the Carmelite Salvator mundi?
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,445
    Sadly, I don't. I have a polyphonic setting by Peter Kwasniewski, but that won't work in the Novus Ordo.
  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,504
    This on Youtube? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgAdCy3IDcw but according to GregoBase it is the version in the L.U. / G.R.

    A dominican version is here, https://gregobase.selapa.net/chant.php?id=6707
  • smvanroodesmvanroode
    Posts: 721
    All three options of the Memorial Acclamation have been set to music. See Singing the Mass (Solesmes, 2011), pp. 73-75. I put them together in the attached pdf.

    Though new to the Roman Rite, these acclamations were known in the Eastern Rites, for example the anaphora of St. James and the anaphora of St. Mark. They are anamnetic acclamations and signify the Eucharist as an eschatological act of remembrance.

    The first acclamation (Mortem tuam) is reminiscent of 1 Corinthians 11:26 and based on the anaphora of St. James. The second acclamation (Quotiescumque) is also based on 1 Corinthians 11:26, but more closely:
    26 Quotiescumque enim manducabitis panem hunc et calicem bibetis, mortem Domini annuntiatis, donec veniat.

    The third acclamation (Salvator mundi) is based on the antiphon Salvator mundi, sung at Sext of the feast of the Exaltation of the Cross.

    Pope John Paul II says of the acclamation (Ecclesia de Eucharistica 5)
    5. “Mysterium fidei! - The Mystery of Faith!”. When the priest recites or chants these words, all present acclaim: “We proclaim your Death, O Lord, and profess your Resurrection until you come again”.

    In these or similar words the Church, while pointing to Christ in the mystery of his passion, also reveals her own mystery: Ecclesia de Eucharistia. By the gift of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost the Church was born and set out upon the pathways of the world, yet a decisive moment in her taking shape was certainly the institution of the Eucharist in the Upper Room. Her foundation and wellspring is the whole Triduum paschale, but this is as it were gathered up, foreshadowed and “concentrated” for ever in the gift of the Eucharist. In this gift Jesus Christ entrusted to his Church the perennial making present of the paschal mystery. With it he brought about a mysterious “oneness in time” between that Triduum and the passage of the centuries.

    The thought of this leads us to profound amazement and gratitude. In the paschal event and the Eucharist which makes it present throughout the centuries, there is a truly enormous “capacity” which embraces all of history as the recipient of the grace of the redemption. This amazement should always fill the Church assembled for the celebration of the Eucharist.

  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 8,259
    thousands of accurate novel ways to pray this form
    fixed... after all... Jesus never intended his words to be taken literally! Besides... according to the latest Pew Poll, most people think the Eucharist is just a symbol (tic)
  • drforjc
    Posts: 17
    Though new to the Roman Rite, these acclamations were known in the Eastern Rites
    Therein lies the problem.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,051
    Being an easterner, I am not in favor of taking things out of context and incorporating them into other rites. We don't do that and neither should you.
  • A potent point, Charles, to which I am in longstanding agreement.
    I must say, though, that the gospel procession which the Anglican and Ordinariate Uses have modified and borrowed from the Rite of St John Chrysostum is a lovely enhancement of the relatively lackluster Western ritual surrounding the proclamation of the gospel. It is awe inspiring to have the gospel so exalted.
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 1,559
    I must say, though



    Yet another instance of . . .
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  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    Perhaps I am missing something, but at the proclamation of the Gospel I can't see a structural difference between the EF Solemn Mass and the Liturgy of St John Chrysostom, except the role of the EF subdeacon in holding the book while the deacon sings the Gospel. And I cannot see a difference in the description of the Gospel proclamation between the current OF Missal and DW the Missal.
  • toddevoss
    Posts: 93
    Salieri- It would have been wonderful if v1 of O Salutaris had been drawn upon for the MA. It can still play a role. After the communion antiphon, if there is adequate time, the choir could chant O Salutaris.
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 1,559
    Am I alone in thinking that the phrase Mysterium Fidei needs no acclamation of any sort to follow it? I was always under the impression that the phrase, as originally meant, referred to the act of transubstantiation that is taking place at that moment in the Mass. It almost seemed as if they were putting the acclamations in there to take the place of that meaning, almost to refocus away from the idea of the Real Presence towards another, more acceptable 'mystery'. (I might be reading too much into this - and it wouldn't be the first time.)
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  • In the gospel procession as it unfolds in the Ordinariate Use, the gospel book is carried aloft with torches, crucifer, thuribler, boat boy, book bearer, and deacon in its train, out of the sanctuary and out into the nave where the gospel itself is ceremonially proclaimed in the midst of the people. It is this lengthy and inspiring procession, this particular exaltation of the word of God, which makes our gospel rite more elaborate than most western usages (that I have ever heard of). I was taught many years ago that this particular ritual was borrowed from several eastern rites. Regardless of its origin it remains a most fitting manner of blessing and proclaiming the Sacred Good News. I know of no likeness to this in any other western usage. If this ritual is less unique in the west than of which I am aware, I would be delighted and appreciative to be corrected. I certainly intend no disparagement of those whose ritual surrounding the Gospel is less elaborate. I believe that we all are in equal thrall to the gospel, however it is proclaimed. There is no partisan boasting in my above comments - which I'm sure was assumed by those among us of earnest good will.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    Thanks for that description. It is slightly more more elaborate than anything I have seen (crucifer and boat boy), but mainly, I think, because of the proclamation being sited in the nave rather than within the sanctuary. I don't have time to check at the moment, but I recall ancient Roman churches with an ambo in the nave, so that may not be an innovation. My desire is to suggest that this is a revival within the tradition, an organic development rather than an alien intrusion.
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  • Mr Hawkins -

    As I recall, this particular ritual began to be not uncommon in Anglo-Catholic circles around the mid-seventies, and I distinctly remember several scholars saying that it was a borrowing from Eastern rites. One will find this ritual in high Anglican (or at least high Episcopal) usage today, and it is a feature of the Ordinariate Use. (I even introduced it into the large Lutheran church which I once served!)

    I have seen those ambos out in the nave in early churches of which you speak. It is thus possible that, as you suggest, this is a revival rather than an importation. Except that in the Ordinariate Use the gospel is proclaimed after the procession out into the centre aisle of the nave (literally 'carried to the people'), not at an ambo.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    From a posting at Canticum Salomonis:-
    The jubé of San Pancrazio in Rome is on the Gospel side of the nave; that of the church of Sant’Ambrogio in Milan, the principal church after the cathedral, is on the Epistle side; and that of San Salvatore in Ravenna is on the same side, as I gather from the Italian voyage of Fr. Chastelain in these terms:
    “At 17:00 on Saturday, 20th October 1668, we left for Ravenna where we arrived at midday….I first saw the metropolitan church of San Salvatore….The pulpit on the right side of the nave is flanked by two columns and of very beautiful white marble, with a straight set of stairs on each side. In front and behind I could read the words: Servus Christi Piagnellus Episcopus, hunc pyrgum fecit. The pulpit had been made for a jubé and the Gospel is still chanted from here on certain days.”
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  • Liam
    Posts: 3,781
    IIRC from reading comments elsewhere, this ceremony was an invention.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    Liam: When do they say the ceremony was invented? The procession with incense and candles is in the Tridentine Missal (which eschewed novelty). The church of St Pancras was built by Pope Symmachus (498–514).
    Invention 5:(archaic) The act of discovering or finding; the act of finding out; discovery.
    "That judicial method which serveth best for the invention of truth."
    Sadly most people are so unaware of the tradition that they think of looking for things in foreign traditions which were in their own heritage all along. Like turning to Eastern mysticism while being ignorant of The Cloude of Unknowyng, or the Aȝenbite of Inwit.
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  • Liam
    Posts: 3,781
    I am talking about the coming out of the sanctuary into the nave to proclaim the Gospel from amid the pews, as it were.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    On the edge of the sanctuary was common, but outside the sanctuary is rare in the West, but not unknown. You can tell an ambo from a pulpit by the size, they are large enough for torch bearers and thurifer as well as the deacon.
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  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,434
    Westminster Cathedral was of course built for the Tridentine Rite, with a very large ambo/pulpit.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,504
    As for the Pulpit... I notice as one travels around Europe (I am just back from Switzerland having driven through Germany and France), that is some churches it is on the Gospel side, and others on the Epistle side. I presume it was used for primarily for preaching, I notice that most have a large crucifix in a prominent place within the immediate view of the preacher.

    As for the Gospel procession, the key difference between the Anglican (English Missal) and the EF Solemn Mass is that in the former they process to the centre of the nave, in the latter they leave the sanctuary and turn to the Gospel side to Sing the Gospel at the entrance to where the Gospel side trancept should be. I also believe that the EF Procession only has Deacon, Sub-deacon, Acolytes, Thurifer, boat, and M.C. I have not seen mention of Cross bearer as in the Anglican arrangement.

    Also I thought that the Sarum use had the Gospel at a Solemn Mass Sung from the centre of the Nave. We do not know what they did at a Mass in a chantry chapel at 6am on a Monday in Lent.
  • Here is a descripio of the gospel rite at Sarum (taken from Mediaeval Music, an Oxford anthology which includes the entire music and rubrics for the Sarum mass of Christmas Day).

    (Alleluia will have been intoned from the rood loft by four choir boys wearing copes -

    (During the singing of the Sequence the procession for the Gospel is formed with the normal priestly blessings, and after the Sequence -

    Preceded by the candle-bearers, censer-bearer, and cross-bearer, the deacon went through the middle of the quire bearing the Gospels solemnly in his left hand. On reaching the rood-loft the principal subdeacon took the text and held it on the deacon's left for him to read. The cross-bearer stood on the deacon's right, the candle-bearers on either side, and the censer-bearer behind him. The deacon signed the cross with his thumb over the book, his face, and breast, saying Dominus vobiscum, (etc.).


    It would seem, then, that the gospel was proclaimed not in the nave, but at the entrance to the rood loft. Ordinariate usage would appear to be fundamentally in agreement with Sarum usage - except that in the latter the procession stops on the pavement at the rood loft and does not enter into the nave. Nothing is said about an ambo, etc.

    I have Frere's 1898 and 1901 Use of Sarum and will fry to find greater details in it.

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