I have begun serving Solemn High Masses, at local parishes near my assignment for a couple of years now. The experience of serving at the Latin Mass has enriched my diaconal ministry in ways that I never imagined.
Which brings me to my two quick questions: First, when I am serving the Mass of Paul VI with a priest that wants me to turn the pages of the Roman Missal is it liturgically proper or appropriate for me to move back and forth, as I would in a Solemn High? If possible, it would seem to me to be precisely the mutual enrichment that is organic within authentic liturgical development and renewal. Perhaps this is done in other parts of the world or country. I have just never seen it done in the NO. Secondly, a deacon friend mentioned that there are rubrics for a deacon to function, at a Missa Cantata; however, I have not been able to find the rubrics. He stated that when done the deacon would function “almost as a blend of and emcee and what you would expect to see a deacon do in the NO.” Are you aware of any such function for a deacon?
Thank you again for your time and for all that you do.
I like this question. Also, it’s good for St. Stephen’s Day.
I often mention how learning the Vetus Ordo will change the way a priest understands his priesthood. You have brought in that deacons learn more about themselves in the traditional form. Thanks for that. There is no question that the same will be true of all the servers at Mass and all the lay baptized at Mass.
Yes, I think it is fully appropriate to move to the priest’s right for the sake of covering and uncovering the chalice using the pall, and then returning to the book after the consecration if the Eucharistic Prayer is long enough to warrant the trip. In your absence from the book, another (male) server should come up to turn the pages. That server would return to the side when you return to the book.
At my home parish in St. Paul, we had always two deacons on for the major Sunday and festal Masses with the Novus Ordo, all ad orientem and in Latin with traditional vestments, etc. One would read the Gospel and become a kind of subdeacon, and the other would be the deacon “at the altar”, so to speak. It was a division of roles that worked well.
As far as the deacon at a Missa Cantata is concerned, I won’t go there. Frankly, I don’t like that set up. Let the Missa Cantata be what it is. Let the deacons serve for Solemn Mass.