ASK FATHER: Getting necessary gear for the Traditional Latin Mass

From a reader…


We have been gradually building up our liturgy practice in a little but growing community centered in the traditional Mass. We now have a Sung Mass every Sunday. The altar service includes the Master of Ceremonies, the Thurifer, and two Acolytes. We have new recruits on the way so maybe soon also a Cross-bearer and torch-bearers.

Would you direct me to a good reference detailing the liturgical artifacts that go into a good liturgy along with, perhaps, some guidance on where to purchase quality objects, so that we may prioritize and work on perfecting our liturgical practice? For example—what Cross for the Cross-bearer? Recommended torches and torch-holders, and so on.

I’ll open this up to the readership.

I’ll start, however, with the great “John” of Leaflet Missal in St. Paul, who runs their church goods department.   He understands your liturgical sensibilities and needs and has great experience.  I get stuff through him and he is handling the Birettas For Seminarians project.

By the way, there is a terrific old book The Church Edifice and its Appointments. US HERE – UK HERE

This tells you about everything a church needs to be well-equipped for just about any liturgy or occasion.


I was amused when looking around for images at some contrasts when it came to items for the Novus Ordo and item for the TLM.

Which is which?

Of course the TLM can be said with modern vestments in a modern context and the Novus Ordo can be said with traditional gear and architecture.   But each – interiorly – seems to have its own ethos.  Each seems to call forth a certain style.





















About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Timely post for me. A communion rail cloth? Necessary. Where to get one? Custom needed i would think.

  2. Hello Fr and readers. Long time reader here, and i’v exhumed in from time to time.

    For this person’s queries, perhaps my serving blog can be of assistance. My blog is Servimus Unum Deum, a blog I started to provide general information on the Litrugical/general aspects of the TLM but also to highlight offerings of Latin Masses in the Archdiocese of Toronto, albeit with some opinion posts from time to time. While I have not been able to attend to my blog frequently in my current stage of life as a husband and father to a 17 month old son, it was a labour of love I started back in 2012 and in the time before my marriage I was able to create numerous posts about serving, a general tool kit, a number of the serving roles, etc. See here:

    As to the person’s specific questions, some posts, for example, would have information the poster wants, such as my torchbearer post, which shows the different types of “torches” that could be used for the position.

    Hope this helps, Pax tibi Christi.

  3. One more thing to add: eBay is a treasure trove for EF liturgical items. While quality varies, “gems” can be sought out for personal purchase from numerous sellers. I’ve found a few gems myself on there.

  4. HighMass says:

    And just think these items were used before Paul VI and Bugnini!
    Then they were tossed, thankfully they are being found and used again! Praise God!

  5. APX says:


    A relatively competent person can measure and sew a housling cloth. It need not be fancy with lace and what have you. Linen is expensive, though, so be ingenious in your use of it.

  6. Cincture says:

    Prayers to your reader and their growing community. Might also inquire at located in Pittsburgh, PA.

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