Friday, 16 August 2013

A Treat For Our Lady's Feast Day...

We are so very blessed at Blackfen. Not only do we have Mass in two forms of the Roman Rite (the vetus ordo and the novus ordo) but we also have a Mass most weeks said according to the Anglican Use of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. At the two sung Sunday Masses (one English, one Latin), we don't get the four-hymn-sandwich, but have the antiphons and the parts of the Mass sung.

2013-08-15 20.42.43Our Parish Priest delivers excellent sermons, and he has written down what he wants to say, so he doesn't waffle. There is even a summary of it in the parish newsletter. He doesn't treat the congregation as if they are a bunch of nine-year-olds, but covers Church history, doctrine, moral and social teaching, and usually bits from the lives and writings of the saints and the writings or speeches of the Pope (whichever one it happens to be.) The documents of Vatican II are frequently quoted (and we get Vatican I and Trent as well, just to demonstrate the hermeneutic of continuity in action.)

We have some really skilled and dedicated servers, a talented parish choir which has an amazing repertoire (lots of people sing different settings for the Kyrie, but how many times do you hear a small parish choir also knock out the Gloria, Sanctus and Agnus Dei of Mass IV, for example?) and a marvelous team of people who clean the church and do all sorts of extra stuff in the sacristy (laundry of altar linens, mending vestments, making altar cloths) - the sort of thing that is only noticed when it isn't there.

And, as an extra-special blessing, we have Sisters who visit the parish. None of this "Nuns on the Bus" rubbish... these ones have full habits.

2013-08-15 20.34.02

This is such an important witness for young women and girls - the priest is an obvious sign of a vocation in the Church, but most religious sisters in parishes are no longer "visible" at first glance. Even the teaching orders have pretty much disappeared from English schools.

The Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate often pop over to Blackfen for Mass, and on big feasts of Our Lady's they will often come along and sing the Mass propers and a motet or two. I videoed the incensing at the Offertory, and the Sisters were singing something really beautiful - I'm not sure what it is, but hopefully one of them will let me know. It's only my little mobile phone, but it still sounds awesome, so I thought I would share...

I only took a couple of photos, but you can see them here.


Zephyrinus said...

Like a jigsaw puzzle, there are
many, many, constituent parts.

You have mentioned them all, Mac, very well,
and the final picture, when all the constituent parts
come together, is a wonderful one, indeed.

The final picture at Blackfen is
a truly Divine, Profound, Sacred one.

And that is the Liturgy that you correctly referred to.

Deo Gratias, indeed.

Jamie the Scotsman said...

I've always wanted to see what the Liturgy is like in Blackfen. Very eager to make a visit one day when I'm in London.

You are so blessed to have such a traditional and christian liturgical tradition. And Thanks be to God for all the good work that Fr. Timothy is doing there.

P.S. The Polyphony is top notch!

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