Prohibition of the human voice during Purification
  • Is this real? We have been told to stop singing the moment the tabernacle door closes and only have instruments play during purification. I have seen some directors go into a cappella there, but first time I’m hearing that the pastor does not want the voice. Was wondering what the going idea is on this… maybe there is an official liturgical instruction?
  • By the way this is a pastor who showed up yesterday to the school awards ceremony in a tight black muscle t shirt. I will never get that most unwelcome inappropriateness out of my head.
    Thanked by 1ServiamScores
  • NihilNominisNihilNominis
    Posts: 994
    The GIRM seems to be being read backwards here -- whilst the Instruction states that the "singing is to be prolonged for as long as the Sacrament is administered to the faithful," it also foresees the possibility of a hymn being sung after Communion.

    Consequently, it is not that the use of "as long as" indicates that the Instruction wishes all vocal music to *stop* immediately after the last communicant has received, but rather that it wishes the music to cover the entire administration of Communion to the faithful.
    Thanked by 1hilluminar
  • Liam
    Posts: 5,003
    In the current ritual, the running assumption is that sufficient hosts ought and therefore will be consecrated at Mass* - something many places actually do manage to do typically - such that recourse to the tabernacle to distribute Communion at that Mass should normally not be necessary, so I would wonder about any interpretation of a rule that hinged (pun intended) on the closing of the tabernacle door.

    * Cf.: https://www.usccb.org/prayer-and-worship/the-mass/order-of-mass/liturgy-of-the-eucharist/holy-communion-from-the-tabernacle
  • In our diocese the tabernacle is used as a reservoir which is constantly emptied and filled, not as a recourse in case the amount was not sufficient.
    In fact during yesterdays award ceremony the tabernacle was emptied and left open. It was not a liturgy.
  • Continuous bass,

    If people spent more time implementing what the documents say, and less time inventing stuff, the liturgy would be more attractive and less clericalist. You're right to be alarmed.

  • Chrism
    Posts: 869
    In fact during yesterdays award ceremony the tabernacle was emptied and left open.


    This is the preferred practice when a secular event occurs in a church building. Someone can quote the document.
  • Andrew_Malton
    Posts: 1,167
    There is definitely no such liturgical instruction.

    Does Fr call it purification?

    I remember a couple of priests who'd insist on purifying the vessels after Mass (in one case leaving it to laymen, alas) -- saying (in both cases) that one doesn't wash the dishes in front of the guests at a banquet...

    That was long ago. Maybe there are no priests taking that view today.
  • This particular parish used to do the same but still using the purificator during mass, even then not always by the priest, where only the sacristan would handle the vessels post-communion. In most of our parishes by the time we are done singing the second communion hymn, all the purification and tabernacle are squared away and the priest launches into prayer sometimes after a pause. (and notably without feedback that we had been singing out of turn according to the Eucharistic goings-on)
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 3,177
    Don't get too upset about this. Our former Pastor during the last decade of his reign asked that there be only instrumental music during the purifications so that people could pray quietly on their own---a precious rarity in the New Mass---rather than a hymn or motet. I didn't necessarily like the idea at the time, but I acquiesced, and it grew on me, and I appreciated it. I continued the practice to our current pastor, until the past year to so, when I've been experimenting with different arrangements of music during communion to try to keep everyone happy, including doing a "big hymn" at this point. But I've come full circle again, and am now only playing soft instrumental music after communion. We had the Bishop for Confirmation this past Sunday (Pentecost), and his rules for Mass with the Bishop include the instruction that there should be silence after Communion during the purification of the vessels: no singing and no instrumental music. So that's what we did: I have to say that I liked it. So, now I have been still playing after Communion, but much less, allowing a larger gap of silence at that time, and I may cut out the music there all together. I suppose in my old age (36) I am appreciating silence more.

    So, again, don't lose sleep over this: just do what he says, it may take some getting used to, and some rearranging of music on your part, but, I think, you will find it to be a good thing.
  • Of course we always acquiesce on the arrangements and was wondering if this had been encountered elsewhere. I don’t mind either way, not to say I’m apathetic. It is a thing though, that one is apt to forget or mis-time, and differs from the usual way I encounter which is to have the silence after the distribution /and/ purifying, and not having to time the end of any hymn except that there has been an end to altar activities… this is going a bit beyond that.
  • Continuousbass,

    It is sensible to say, "active participation includes listening, and listening must include some silence," so there's nothing in principle wrong with having instruments play (unless it's Lent, or the instruments are played by people who have no idea what they're doing, or the music is execrable in itself) and other voices rest, but there's also no mandate: Commandment #11: there shall be no human voices, but there must be instruments, when the tabernacle closes.
    Thanked by 1Continuousbass
  • Then I turn to whatever it is to play in this moment, there must be a chant melody which goes along with the quiet prayers that are said? “What has passed our lips as food, O Lord, may we possess in purity of heart, that what has been given to us in time may be our healing for eternity.” Is that still in use?
  • Come again?
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 3,409
    One of the largest changes in the 2002 3rd edition of GIRM is to the purification/dish washing. Doing it after Mass was originally clearly preferred, and doing it in the centre of the altar on the corporal explicitly forbidden. Then EMoHCs, now reserved to ordained ministers or commissioned acolytes.
    Continuous bass, I think the singers need instructions direct from the pastor, not filtered through the interpretation of a third party; do they stop mid syllable, mid verse, or at a natural break point?
  • Continuous bass, I think the singers need instructions direct from the pastor, not filtered through the interpretation of a third party; do they stop mid syllable, mid verse, or at a natural break point?


    Indeed!
  • Indeed. I posed a clarifying question first thing this morning; not expecting and answer at this point.
  • Then I turn to whatever it is to play in this moment, there must be a chant melody which goes along with the quiet prayers that are said? “What has passed our lips as food, O Lord, may we possess in purity of heart, that what has been given to us in time may be our healing for eternity.” Is that still in use?


    Is this the clarifying question you asked, or do you mean you asked of your pastor?

  • No that was just an idea I had if switching to a different instrumental piece at that time.. perhaps not wanting to continue the hymn in silence as to confuse people. Sad story: this pastor laid off every parish-contracted musician, leading most of them to change denominations (we are the only catholic game in town). That’s not the sad part, the sad part was he did it by mass email, like an Elon Musk or Mark Zuckerberg. The good part is most of those people are stronger than the destructive nature of what he did to them. No one sings here any more, all the contractors are friends of one volunteer with 0 experience. Parish is in a multi million dollar debt. Multiple teachers and the principal have quit this year. Yikes.
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 3,177
    Might one inquire how old this pastor is?
  • Salieri,

    Does
    a tight black muscle t shirt
    answer your question?


    Continuous bass,

    Did this same pastor happen to announce that there would be some special liturgies for Pride Month?
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 3,177
    Does
    a tight black muscle t shirt

    answer your question?

    No, because bad taste has no age limit.
  • Point conceded -- but I wish it weren't true.
  • JonLaird
    Posts: 245
    I recall Cardinal Sarah stating during the 2017 Sacra Liturgia conference in Milan that the choir's singing should end when the distribution of communion is completed in order to allow for silent prayer.

    EDIT: It was not taken as a prohibition, but a prudential/liturgical judgment.
  • Today this was resolved by switching to the Liber Organi after a single hymn. They want this timed to the “reservation of the blessed sacrament” which means to the tabernacle door. Unfortunately the high alter upon which the tabernacle rests is deeply recessed into an aspe and totally out of view. Musicians can see the front of the altar only, and all behind the altar activity is not visible.
    I believe even the pastor is unclear on this as it is likely to be emanating from our local deaconate.

    No allowance for silent prayer.