I recently received a couple instructional DVDs produced by the canons at St. John Cantius in Chicago and I have had a chance to look at “Sacred Rites and Ceremonies of the Roman Rite, featuring the use of the 1962 Liturgical Books of Blessed John XXIII“, meaning of course, the Liber Usualis (BUY), Rituale Romanum (BUY) and Missale Romanum (BUY). The canons also have great online resources.
This DVD in is their online store.
The DVD includes instructions for doing, in the traditional form, Baptism of an Infant, Penance, Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, Solemn Vespers of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Requiem Missa Cantata with Absolution over the Catafalque.
There isn’t anything particularly slick about these videos. They are just … useful. They would help a priest who doesn’t have much experience with the older forms to learn what to do. That’s enough! This is the sort of thing priests can do in parishes.
Too bad there wasn’t a section on performing a marriage and Mass (with its variants).
In the parts on baptism and penance, the priest instructor/narrator essentially reads to the camera from a text with occasional appropriate stills or video clips to illustrate his points, texts popping up on the video from time to time. Some useful pointers are added, such as, during the part on hearing confessions in the older form, the good comment that while priests can hear the confessions of men anywhere they should hear the confessions of women only in a confessional and that this is the only sacrament the priest administers while sitting, because he is also in the role of a judge. There was a rather amusing continuity in that section: in describing how, after absolution, the penitent can go to perform HIS penance, the camera follows a nice young lady with a chapel view to a pew. Opps.
In the part about the Requiem Missa Cantata, with absolution of the catafalque, you basically watch a Mass. There is a a little sermon. The most interesting part starts at about 57 minutes, when the priest goes to the sedilia and changes from the chasuble to the cope and then continues with the absolution.
A choir director would find this section in case he has to learn how to sing for a Mass like this.
The baptism video starts with the blessing of water from the Roman Ritual.
It shows how to get everything ready beforehand. (Don’t forget the bread and lemon!)
It makes good recommendations about more solemn baptisms.
It speaks of a deacon doing a baptism with the pastor’s permission. There is an instruction about sponsors.
There is cute and occasionally unhappy baby.
A Benediction service is filmed. There are text overs. You can see clearly what is done. Spectacular music. beautiful bells, by the way.
The section on Vespers could be very helpful for a priest and choir, with a group of lay people, trying to build up this beautiful example of our liturgical worship. Vespers is simply filmed.
If you have your book to follow, the Liber Usualis, you can then watch the movements in the sanctuary to know what to do and when, make your notes and then recreate the service. What I would NOT recreate is the pace of their chanting of the psalms, etc. Far to slow. But that is a detail. The video is still useful