Fashion Week

In light of the Holy Father’s suggestion that attachment to the traditional Mass is tantamount to an addiction to a certain fashion, I thought it might be useful to provide an audio “fashion show” of excerpts from this past week’s Septuagesima Sunday for those who haven’t had the privilege of assisting at such a liturgy. (I know that doesn’t apply to most readers here, so please pass this along to those who might benefit.)

The beautiful sacred music featured below (please forgive the iPhone quality) is courtesy of the Gregorian Society of Baltimore. If you feel so moved, you can support this fine organization dedicated to “preserving and fostering the Traditional Latin Mass, sacraments and ceremonies of the Roman Rite in the Archdiocese of Baltimore” here. (Special thanks to choir member Debbie Bena for helping me make the recording.)

I’ve provided some notes [in brackets] to help those who typically attend the Novus Ordo get their bearings, along with the English translation of the Latin text below the player.

Asperges [Just before the Mass begins, during the Asperges, the priest sprinkles the assembly with holy water. In the Novus Ordo this is either the “Good Morning, everyone!” rite, the turn-and-greet-your-neighbor rite, or the lector-reads-the-welcome-statement-alerting-everyone-to-turn-off-all-cellphones-and-pagers rite.]

Thou shalt sprinkle me, Lord, with hyssop and I shall be cleansed; thou shalt wash me, and I shall be made whiter than snow. Have mercy on me, O. God, according to thy great mercy.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

INTROIT [In the Novus Ordo, this is the “gathering hymn” as chosen by one of the parish’s resident experts; e.g., the piano player, the director of worship, the liturgy committee, etc.]

The groans of death surrounded me, and the sorrows of hell encompassed me; and in my affliction I called upon the Lord, and he heard my voice from his holy temple. I will love thee, O Lord, my strength: the Lord is my firmament, my refuge, and my deliverer. Glory be to the Father…

Gradual & Tract [Roughly speaking, in the Novus Ordo, this is where the cantor, with a majestic wave of the hand, signals the congregation that they may actively participate by singing, in key or out, the “Responsorial Psalm.”]


A helper in due time, in tribulation: let them trust in thee, who know thee, for thou hast not forsaken them that seek thee, O Lord. For the poor man shall not be forgotten to the end; the patience of the poor man shall not perish for ever: arise, O Lord, let not man prevail.


Out of the depths I have cried to thee, O Lord: Lord, hear my voice. Let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplication. If thou, O Lord, wilt mark iniquities, Lord, who shall stand it? For with thee there is merciful forgiveness, and by reason of thy law, I have waited for thee, O Lord.

Credo [The Creed, that part of the Novus Ordo where everyone still gets tongue-tied at “consubstantial,” and the feminists (and their spineless male supporters) grow mute at the word “men.”]

I believe in the God the Father Almighty…

Offertory [In the Novus Ordo, this is the part of the program where some lucky members of the congregation get to actively participate by carrying up the gifts, at which point they typically exchange niceties with the priest that no one else can hear. This, apparently, serves the Novus Ordo version of the “secret.”]

It is good to give praise to the Lord, and to sing to thy name, O Most High.

No, Holiness, it’s not exactly the latest in cutting edge liturgical style, but we do so hope you’ll patiently tolerate our addiction.

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