A while back I called for those groups who do training for priests and seminarians for the older forms of the Roman Rite, the Extraordinary Use, also to provide more training for lay people who will be called upon to serve those liturgies.
The provision of Summorum Pontificum make it clear that all Latin Rite priests have the right to say Holy Mass also with the Extraordinary Form. Most priests today did not grow up with that older, traditional form. This means that they did not learn the older liturgy from the ground up, as it were. They didn’t learn what to do as servers in different roles. Therefore, when it is time to implement Summorum Pontificum in the parish, they have a gap of knowledge when it comes to training servers. Inevitably there is a layman around – at least in my experience – who know the older form pretty well and can be of great help.
But more resources are needed.
I was interested to find in my mailbox today a note from the Latin Mass Society in England and Wales. Something for your "brick by brick" file.
PRESS RELEASE FROM THE LATIN MASS SOCIETY
For Immediate Release
19 May 2010
LATIN MASS SOCIETY LAUNCHES NEW SODALITY FOR TRADITIONAL ALTAR SERVERS
On Saturday 15th May 2010, at Blackfriars, Oxford, the Society of St Tarcisius, a sodality of servers of the Traditional Latin Mass (Extraordinary Form), [I am reminded of the Archconfraternity of St. Stephen.] was founded during a training day for altar servers, arranged by the Latin Mass Society. Thirty servers were present, with the training being delivered by Fr Armand de Malleray FSSP, Br Lawrence Lew OP, Mr David Forster, and Mr Richard Hawker. The day began with an address from Fr de Malleray on the importance of the service of the altar. The servers were divided into two groups of the less and more experienced for training. Some people travelled long distances to attend – one as far as Preston, Lancashire.
The two groups each had an experienced MC and a cleric to guide them: the less experienced group was led by Fr de Malleray and David Forster; the more experienced group by Br Lawrence Lew and Mr Richard Hawker. The day was interspersed with prayers and ended with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.
The Society of St Tarcisius has been founded to encourage servers of the Traditional Mass in their work on the altar, to provide training for new servers and the more experienced, to promote a high standard of reverence and accuracy, and to form a network through which servers can stay in touch and share resources.
The Society of St Tarcisius is sponsored by the Latin Mass Society, though membership is open to all who wish to serve the Traditional Mass. Saint Tarcisius was a Roman acolyte who was martyred while defending the Holy Eucharist from profanation during the fierce persecutions of the third century. The sodality has taken “Fidelis usque ad mortem” – Faithful even unto death – as its motto, and seeks to inculcate in servers an intense devotion and reverence for Our Lord in the Eucharist, as well as a precise attention to the ceremonies of the Mass.
The society’s website is www.saint-tarcisius.org.uk. Servers wishing to join the sodality should contact the Secretary, Mr David Forster, at email@example.com.
Photographs of the training event on Saturday 15th May can be seen at www.lmschairman.org/2010/05/server-master-class-report.html
The Latin Mass Society and the Society of St Tarcisius will be holding a residential training course for lay servers at Downside Abbey, Somerset, from Tuesday 10 August to Friday 13 August. This will run alongside the LMS’s Downside training conference for priests to learn the Extraordinary Form. Full details are available from the LMS.