Welcome to the site for News, Events and up-to-date Information on Traditional Catholicism in the West Midlands (UK). I am one of the Diocesan Representatives for the Latin Mass Society of England & Wales for the Promotion of the Traditional Roman Rite.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Low Mass Training

Server Training

Preparing the High Altar
On Saturday I helped two young men learn to serve the Low Mass of the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. They are both parishioners of St John Fisher, West Heath; where there is a Low Mass every Friday as well as two High Masses per year. One was 18 years old, the other 8 years old. Both showed extraordinary zeal, care and attention. Although Low Masses are usually at a side altar in this Church, its lack of altar steps meant using the high altar was preferable, as you can see from the photos

Since Low Mass is best learned just by doing it, Fr George (Parish Priest) kindly offered a Low Mass for St Francis de Sales shortly after 11am so that what was learned could be implemented. The biggest difficulty for a new server is the recitation of Latin responses, and so I stayed in the Sanctuary to help them along during Mass whilst they shared the major roles.

Server Training
Although it is usually just one server per Priest in a Latin Mass, for solemnities two are often used. It is also a great way to teach the Low Mass since a more experienced server can be paired with a 'trainee'. This is the case each Sunday at the Birmingham Oratory. One server is in charge of moving the Missal, and always stays on the opposite side of it. The other server is charged with ringing the bell. They also serve in the same way as Acolytes at a Missa Cantata by assisting the Priest with the water and wine at the Offertory, Lavabo and Ablutions.

It is useful to have a basic knowledge of the differences in the Novus Ordo with this type of training. The younger lad in particular had prior experience of serving at Sunday Masses, and therefore was curious about the differences. For instance there are two ablutions, both using wine as well as just water. This server is particularly honoured to be chosen to serve Fr George's school Masses, where he will expose the children to the Latin Mass for the first time. Please pray for these fine young men.

To read about the LMS's latest initiatives for training Altar Servers, see the Society of St Tarcissius website

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