From a reader:
At the chapel where I assist at the traditional Mass, the priest turns on all the lights in the room in the morning to read the Missal. I’ve talked to several other people and we have no problem reading our hand-missals in the natural light, but apparently the priest does. Still, we find that atmosphere is really more sacred when just the natural light from the windows and the candles is present. Would it be allowable, then, for the priest to have a book-light attached to his missal stand?
My initial reaction is probably along the lines the priest in question might have if people came to him with a complaint about the lights being on: I think you should be very happy… delighted… a) that you have a priest and b) that he uses the older form of the Missale Romanum and c) that he wants to get the words right and d) that he wants people to be able to follow along.
I think you should be very happy indeed.
I am sure that some people would like pumpkin-scented candles or maybe a little mood music. Some would probably like foot rubs or perhaps a some additional throw rubs here and there.
Given that it is good for the priest to be able to see the words, yes, the priest could use a book light.
I sympathize with your desire to have a "worship space" which is conducive to prayer. But I wouldn’t pick on him about this.
Perhaps over time the priest will come to an understanding that he need not turn on all the lights for the sake of people in the church being able to read their hand missals with ease. But I urge you not to start sniping at him about the lights in church.
Okay… I have been a little tough on the questioner. I know.
Perhaps somehow a suggestion could be worked in along the lines of saving the parish money by keeping the lights lower… dunno. It depends on the circumstances.