In Rome there was a Pontifical TLM sung by the President of the Pont. Comm. Ecclesia Dei, His Eminence Dario Card. Castrillon Hoyos in the Roman Basilia of St. Mary of the Angels and the Martyrs in the Chapel of San Bruno, a side chapel of the Basilica.

The Mass was hosted by members of the parish Archconfraternity of Mercy on the occasion of their annual celebration.

Our friend John Sonnen of Orbis Catholicus has lots of good photos.   Here are a couple

Remember…. this is a side chapel of the Basilica!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Brendan says:

    Wow! That’s a side chapel? Unreal.

  2. Matthew says:

    According to the Wikipedia entry for the Basilica, it is built INSIDE the frigidarium of the Baths of Diocletian!


  3. NY Seminarian says:

    Hate to put a downer on it, but i really hate what the Cardinal is wearing.

    I love a good fiddleback, but what is that he is wearing underneath? Is it a dalmatic? I think it ends up looking really ugly when you combine the two.

    Lovely chapel though!

  4. RichR says:

    In the old rite, aren’t bishops supposed to wear the dalmatic and chasuble as a sign of the fullness of Holy Orders?

  5. dominic1962 says:

    Yes, that is part of the pontifical vesture and you are probably just not used to seeing the two put together. A bishop dressed in full traditional pontificals looks very sharp.

  6. David says:

    First things first. Beautiful chapel, and it’s wonderful to have a Pontifical Mass sung there. May we have any more.

    Yet, one question about the top photo. His Eminence does not seem to be keeping custody of the fingers as he holds the ciborium. While it’s not clear from the photo whether or not this ciborium is of such a shape that it CAN be held correctly, it still seems a bit odd. What’s going on here?

    Again, Father, thanks for the photos. I would love to have such a “side chapel” for my main church!

  7. Cerimoniere says:

    NY Seminarian: yes, it’s a dalmatic. It’s unfortunate that the colour of the violet pontifical dalmatic that happened to be available doesn’t go well with the shade of that particular chasuble, but that’s a small price to pay for (a) having correct and beautiful vestments available at all, and (b) being able to show forth what they signify in this wonderful Mass.

    David: we must assume that the Cardinal purified his fingers in the finger bowl before picking up the ciborium. That’s perfectly permissible, if the shape or weight of the ciborium would make it impractical for the celebrant to hold it otherwise.

  8. Ian Power says:

    On my most recent trip to Rome I had the pleasure of taking in a free performance of Puccini’s Messa di Gloria that took place at this very altar. The sense of height in this basilica is dizzying, seemingly even more so than St. Peter’s.

    Corroborating the old expression “there’s no such thing as a free lunch”, the audience was made to endure (as is the Italian way) an hour and a half of speeches for the pleasure of about 45 mins. of music. Nonetheless I spent almost two hours taking in that magnificent altarpiece, which will remain burned into my memory. I should mention that the architectural elements (pediment, columns, plinth, etc.) are painted; it’s not immediately evident even when you are there in person.

    As Matthew mentioned, the church maintains at least the shape of the ancient baths. Other sections of the (enormous) bathhouse remain in various states of preservation and can be toured today.

    n.b. Romans sometimes refer to the basilica as “St. Mary in the Bath”, which sounds funny the first time you hear it.

  9. Anthony says:

    The additional vestments were probably welcomed by the episcopacy of old who had to say Mass in very cold stone churches before the days of central heating.

  10. Jonathan Bennett says:

    Remember also that bishops would wear both a tunicle and a dalmatic under the chasuble. These would be much less bulky and lack the ornamentation of the regular tunicle and dalmatic of course.

  11. Matt Q says:

    Wonderful shot. It’s odd though. I’ve noticed all the EF Masses in those places are all relegated to the side chapels, crypts and backyards–everywhere but the high altars. ??

  12. Rachel says:

    I don’t suppose anyone knows if that’s Fr. Mark Withoos on the right in the second picture?

  13. robert says:

    Gorgeous church, but I hate that obstuctive organ! It clashes and looks so tacky with the splendid architecture.

  14. Lucy says:

    Absolutely stunning !!

  15. henri says:

    By the way, for the Aussies out there, the sub-deacon is the great Rev Father Mark Withoos and the Aussie connection is also through Fr Kramer, I think.

  16. Cerimoniere says:

    Fr Withoos is the deacon. He appears on the Cardinal’s left in the second picture, because it’s a pontifical Mass, and the Assistant Priest is on the Cardinal’s right. The subdeacon would be in front of them, out of the picture. He is on the Cardinal’s right, as usual, in the picture showing Holy Communion.

  17. Rachel says:

    Thank you, Cerimoniere!

    I feel like it’s a small world. :)

  18. Franzjosf says:

    Yes, this is a side chapel, but the church is twice or three times as wide as it is long. In other words, the two side chapels together and opposite each other are about three times as long as the Nave, with a very small apse. (This Church is at Repubblica, not far from Termini.) The organ was a gift to the diocese; it is so huge that they didn’t know where to put it in Rome because there are so many art works not to be covered, so they put it here, out from the wall. The church also has a meridian running through it with a tiny whole to allow a stream of light in to tell the months and time of day.

  19. Limbo says:

    Yes Rachel !! His eminence is flanked by two esteemed Aussies – Fr. Mark Withoos and Fr. Joseph Kramer…how I wish they were both over here helping us out though.

  20. Gregory DiPippo says:

    Just so you know, this altar is CURRENTLY a side-altar, but was originally the main altar. The building was radically altered in the 19th century. We had the Mass at this altar because the new rite fixtures in what is now the principal sanctuary of hte building are too heavy to move.
    The 2nd MC

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