VIDEO: ‘ad orientem’ worship

The single most damaging change made in the name of, the “spirit” of the Second Vatican Council, was the “turning around” of our altars.   We should recover ad orientem worship.

The video highlights the Traditional Latin Mass, but ee need ad orientem worship for both the Novus Ordo and the Traditional Mass.


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  1. S.Armaticus says:

    So the video answers the “what”.

    In turn, Don Nicola Bux answers the “who”. I quote:

    “The Church is not split between traditionalists and progressives, but between Catholics and modernists.”

    They say that the first step in solving a problem is to correctly define it. Looks like we are finally on the right track.

  2. alanphipps says:

    Both forms of the mass are shown in the video, including the Ordinary Form at my parish in Sugar Land, TX (St. Theresa’s).

  3. arga says:

    “The priest speaks for the people to God,” the bishop-emeritus of Corpus Christi says toward the end of the video. That is right and good, but of course he has put his finger on EXACTLY the objection to ad orientem that comes from the wreckers who precisely want to minimize the role of the priest as mediator and exalt the faithful as a kind of priesthood itself.

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  5. PTK_70 says:

    Watched the video….well done IMHO.

    To pick up on alanphipps’s comment, the posture of the priest does not depend upon the form of the Mass. Neither does the priest’s posture depend upon the language employed.

    The language of worship and the posture of the priest should be decoupled in our minds.

    Latin as a liturgical language will continue to appeal to a niche “market” for as long as Latin remains absent from our high school curricula. As wonderfully suited as this language may be to worship, I convinced that there is little to be gained in attempting to force upon the rank and file any more than a taste of Latin at this time. Let’s work to put Latin back in secondary education, private and public.

    But ‘ad orientem’ worship can be instituted now! Parish “politics” may dictate that ad orientem worship is best implemented for the early morning or late afternoon Sunday Mass. I get that. Nevertheless, it can be done now… week or next month even! The direction in which the priest faces puts no extra demands on the faithful in the pews. Seriously, this change could not be easier.

    I surmise that over time, an ad orientem OF Mass in the vernacular would attract a robust following, even were it celebrated on the edges of the Sunday schedule. Then it will become apparent that the ‘ad orientem’ posture belongs back in the mainstream of parish life.

  6. musicus says:

    PTK_70: I couldn’t agree more. That has been my experience in working in the early Saturday morning Mass ad orientem in English (OF), the first time the “high altar” has been used in approximately 50 years.

  7. Bthompson says:

    Last week, I was invited to say the daily Mass as a last-minute substitute at the Protocathedral of St James in Vancouver, Wa. They exclusively use the original high altar (they don’t even have a floating altar). What an experience! I have never said Mass Ad Orientem with a congregation before. There was a rightness to the experience I can’t fully articulate; a deeper sense of prayer both on my own part and feeling like the people in the nave were really *with* me sharing in prayer, but also *mine* as in a responsibility (this is the part I cannot describe well).

  8. RichR says:

    Well done video. People reading this should share with at least two other friends.

    One thing that is readily apparent in watching an ad orientem Mass: the major elevation of the Host/Chalice immediately after the consecration makes sense only in an ad orientem posture. Most altars are plainly visible, and so is the priest, and so is the Host/Chalice when Mass is done versus populism. So why elevate the Host so high? It’s because the Host needs to clear the priest’s head for the faithful to actually see.

  9. visigrad says:

    Our Pastor has expressed how beautiful the theology of Ad Orietum is….so I sent him this video and now I am praying…HARD !!!

  10. Elizium23 says:

    Good production values. Erudite commentary and opinions. This is definitely a Good Thing for those of us who support the Reform of the Reform.

  11. PTK_70 says:

    @musicus…Thank you for the validation of what I have yet to actually see with mine own eyes. Hope to report positive results from my parish if/when the priests start celebrating the late Sunday OF Mass in an ad orientem posture.

    @Bthompson…Thank you, sir…I enjoyed reading your testimony.

  12. Kathleen10 says:

    As Bthompson said, there is a profound feeling of reverence in the ad orientem that is missing in the versus populum. The focus is not only no longer on the priest, it is not on the people, and that can be a relief. I do not wish to “perform” during a Mass, nor am I there to see the priest “perform”. I want to meet God. I want to be there and feel that He sees me, and I see Him. I want the graces that result from the kind of worship that He is due, and that turns my mind, heart, and soul toward Him fully for one hour or so.
    I love the Latin. I am a convert, and did not grow up with Latin or Mass in the Extraordinary Form. But there is something wonderful and mystical about such an ancient rite, and Latin enhances it. There are Missals right there that translate the Latin to English, but one can learn that over time, as we are. There is no pressure on the people, as there sometimes is during the NO Mass.
    In these dark days, I would hope that all may at least experience the Holy Mass in the Extraordinary Form. It is well worth the drive. We enjoyed it in our area for the last eight months or so, and just lost it as our priest moved. I don’t know what we will do now, but just knowing this Mass is out there is a comfort.

  13. I particularly liked that you mentioned ad orientem worship for the Novus Ordo.

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  15. James Maximilian says:

    I think I will definitely use this video (if allowed?) for my second grade sacramental preparation class! We have the Anglican use, Novus Ordo, and the Traditional Latin Mass at our church and I think this may really help our kids understand why the Priest is facing Jesus, and NOT turning his back on us. Very well done. If I need permission to show this, please let me know….if you know to whom I should ask? Thank you, God bless you Father Zuhlsdorf.

  16. says:

    We were happy to participate in the making of this video. I, for my part, had been exposed to faithful celebration of the Novus Ordo and it wasn’t until I went to the seminary that I discovered horrors of abuses. Even then, my mission was to celebrate the Ordinary Form with great dignity and respect. It wasn’t until we started the Extraordinary Form at my parish (after 13 years a priest and all my life loving the Mass in its beauty) what I have experienced celebrating the Extraordinary Form is hard to put into words. Now I wish this was the only Mass I’d celebrate. Most priest can’t be convinced unless they experience it for themselves. I am sad that it took this long to discover what so many knew, I only beg the Lord that he restore this beauty for all.

    Fr. Rodolfo D. Vasquez, Pastor
    St. John the Baptist Catholic Church
    Corpus Christi, Texas

  17. Semper Gumby says:

    This is a great video for sharing with others. Thanks all.

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