Thursday, October 17, 2013

Time to Celebrate ICEL!

Given my long writing against ICEL's work, dating way back, this is the least plausible post ever. But the truth is that ICEL has accomplished an epic thing in giving us a new Missal that has vastly improved the celebration of the ordinary form of Mass. It has brought real peace and beauty to the liturgy and helped usher in a new era of sacredness in liturgical expression that has changed music, decorum on the altar, and so much more.

This turnaround has been a humbling experience. It should that you can't really know in advance the turns that history will take. We think we know but then it turns out we don't know. Progress can come from anywhere. I'm deeply inspired by what ICEL has done under visionary leadership.

So, let's celebrate! The Mass program uses English chant from the Missal along with all the propers in English. Truly I never thought I would live to see this.
ICEL was founded in St Peter's Basilica fifty years ago today. The occasion will be marked by a Solemn Mass at the Altar of the Chair at 5pm, concelebrated by the Bishops of the Commission and their collaborators (Principal Celebrant and Homilist - Archbishop Arthur Roche, Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

The Mass will include English Gregorian Chant from the Roman Missal and the Graduale Parvum together with some hymns. The Master of Ceremonies of the Mass will be Mgr Jean-Pierre Kwambamba Masi, one of the papal ceremonieri. The deacons will be from the Pontifical Scots College and the Pontifical Beda College. Seminarians from the Pontifical North American College will serve and the schola will be formed of seminarians of the Venerable English College and the Pontifical Beda College. The organist will be Charles Cole, Assistant Director of Music of the London Oratory. The lector will be Peter Finn, Associate Director of ICEL. The offertory gifts will be brought forward by the staff of the ICEL Secretariat from Washington DC. In addition to concelebrating bishops and priests, Cardinals Pell and Burke will assist in Choir.

The Mass will be followed by a reception at the Venerable English College, venue of the first ever meeting of ICEL. Tomorrow, Friday October 18th, Feast of St Luke, The Holy Father will receive the Bishops of the Commission and the ICEL Editorial Committee and their principal collaborators in an audience in the Sala Clementina of the Apostolic Palace.