14 August – Merchantville, NJ: Solemn Mass for the Assumption

My good friend Fr. Robert C Pasley, Rector of Mater Ecclesiae Roman Catholic Church in Berlin, NJ, wrote to tell me about Mater Ecclesiae’s 12th Annual Assumption Mass.

WHEN: Tuesday, August 14, at 7:00PM
WHERE: St Peter’s Church, 43 W. Maple Avenue, Merchantville, NJ 08109.
WHAT: Ordinary of the Mass is the “Mass in E Minor” by Anton Bruckner. Other works include the motet “Quis te comprehendat”, which is a reimagination of the “Gran Partita” of Mozart. There will also be two premieres, both written by Conductor Dr. Timothy McDonnell; a choral setting of the “Et Incarnatus est” which will be sung during Credo III, and a setting of the “Sub Tuum Praesidium,” for 10 wind instruments, organ and chorus.

Please note that it will be the anticipated Mass of the Feast, which , I might add, fulfills the obligation.

I can personally attest to the beauty and solemnity of the occasion, in which I have participated in years past.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Interesting. I believe this is the first time I’ve seen an Anticipated Mass in the Extraordinary form. Did this ever occur in the pre-Vatican 2 days?

  2. Tradster says:

    It will be an anticipated Mass strictly out of necessity. Mater Ecclesiae is a small chapel that is too small to accomodate the extra-large attendance at the annual Assumption Mass, which is always a beautiful experience. This year, for the first time, Father Pasley was unable to secure the use of a large local church on the feast day itself.

  3. GrogSmash says:

    I think this is the first time I’ve ever seen this glorious masterpiece of the Assumption! How sublime! Thank you Fr.!

  4. Bryan Boyle says:

    Are you going to be joining Fr. Paisley and the rest of us this year, Father?

  5. Bryan Boyle: I wasn’t invited. I think this year they only want me for my advertising! o{];¬)

  6. wolfeken says:

    JonPatrick wrote: “Interesting. I believe this is the first time I’ve seen an Anticipated Mass in the Extraordinary form. Did this ever occur in the pre-Vatican 2 days?”

    No. Paul VI invented this in 1967. Before then, Sunday Mass had to be offered on Sunday. Assumption day Mass had to be offered on the Assumption.

    This is different from First Vespers, which have always been the evening prior, which began the Divine Office’s liturgical day. But Mass was never “anticipated” the night before until 1967.

    I would argue an “anticipated” traditional Latin Mass, even with the best of intentions such as this, is a violation of “Universae Ecclesiae,” which clearly stated post-1962 practices are not permitted using the 1962 missal.

    “28. Furthermore, by virtue of its character of special law, within its own area, the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum derogates from those provisions of law, connected with the sacred Rites, promulgated from 1962 onwards and incompatible with the rubrics of the liturgical books in effect in 1962.”

    August 14th is the Vigil of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which has its own second class, violet vestment, traditional Latin Mass that is proper to the entire day (and night).

  7. Bryan Boyle says:

    Fr: Ok. Well…hope to meet your acquaintance at some other event along the way here in River City…:) (I wasn’t invited, either, so will sit in the peanut gallery and just bask in the beauty of the Mass…)

  8. Tradster says:

    In principle I agree with you 100%. But exceptions are made when the norm is impossible, as is the case here.

    We can also find ourselves in murky waters of just what the “no post-1962 rubrics” includes. For example, does anyone who receives Holy Communion at an EF Mass with less than a three hour fast beforehand commit a mortal sin?

    Father Z:
    It is a shame you will not be in attendance. I always enjoyed your contributions to the ceremony.

  9. Tradster: It is a shame you will not be in attendance.

    Hey… a donor could always spring for a flight!

  10. As to the issue of an anticipated TLM, this is a matter of canon law, not merely your opinion.

    Can. 931 says that Holy Mass can be celebrated on any day at any hour, except for those times excluded by the liturgical norms, (i.e. Good Friday. By Holy Mass we are talking about Mass in the Roman Rite. The Roman Rite, juridically, has two forms. You know the rest.

    Can. 1248 says, “The precept of participating in the Mass is satisfied by assistance at a Mass which is celebrated anywhere in a Catholic Rite either on the Holy Day or on the evening of the preceding day.” The Mass in question is celebrated on the evening of the day preceding the feast. You fulfill your obligation.

    Since the liturgical day begins with Vespers of the evening before the feast, and since the Mass in question is after 1st Vespers of the Assumption, the “Vigil” Mass would not be used and the Mass of the Day could be used.

    Until the Holy See clarifies the matter, the broader interpretation of the law is permitted. This is how we Catholics interpret law. I’ll bet you that the Holy See, if asked, would affirm this practice rather than declare against it.

    If you don’t like the fact that a TLM is celebrated in the evening, then by all means avoid going to this beautiful Mass, which would also fulfill your obligation for the day of precept.

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