Thursday, October 19, 2006

Assistance required for a celebration of an Ambrosian Rite Liturgy in the USA

[I was recently contacted about this matter and asked if I might somehow provide some sort of assistance. I was only too happy to oblige as I am a firm believer in the promotion of our Western rites and uses. Such things give important witness to the rich tapestry that is our Western liturgical tradition. But it is also important that these things be done as authentically as possible in accordance with the tradition from whence it comes. That requires resources, which might be easier if one were in Milan, or even Italy, but not so easy in the USA. Surely, however, between us here on the NLM or beyond, there might be some who could help locate the liturgical resources they require.

Of course, if they are indeed able to put on and record the entire event and make it available to us, then we all benefit insofar as the recorded liturgy will be that much more of an authentic representation and documentation of another venerable Western liturgical tradition. The very possibility of having this rite documented and available is itself a rare opportunity.

Here is the appeal from the organizers of this event:]

Imagine for a moment stepping back forty years in Italy's Milanese region, where for more than a thousand years, the Ambrosian rite was offered. Proper prayers and rubrics, vestments and chants were brought together to form one of the Western world's most beautiful rites of the Mass. Almost completely abandoned since 1969 this liturgy has almost completely disappeared.

Such a celebration today, especially in the United States, would seem almost miraculous. Deo Gratias, it's now a real possibility- but we need some assistance to make it happen.

The bi-ritual pastor of an historic, Romanesque-revival church located in a northeastern diocese of the U.S. where many- and the most heroic (a venerable, blesseds and a saint) - Catholics have worshipped for over one hundred years is willing to publicly celebrate the Ambrosian rite, the liturgy he was raised with and has studied on the day or Sunday closest to the feast of St. Ambrose, famous shepherd and bishop of Milan. But as you can well imagine, all the 'things' that are neccessary for such a celebration are difficult to locate and to gather.

The details of location and date/time will be published upon the definite decision, and the below items located.

If you a serious student or lover or just somebody interested in the (Milanese) liturgy, perhaps you can help make this happen with the authenticity such an enterprise merits.

We need:

1) Either an Ambrosian Missal (to be loaned)


At least the texts of the Propers (besides the Scripture texts, the Ingressa, Psalmellus, Post Epistolam/Alleluia, possible Sequence and/or Jublius, Cantus, Offertorium, Confractorium and Transitorium) for the feast of St. Ambrose and/or the liturgical day of Sunday, December 10th

2) The Ambrosian chant notations (see above for terms) for the Feast of St. Ambrose and/or Sunday, December 10th, and if possible, any specific Ambrosian chants for the Ordinary as well.

3) Ideally we should like to borrow a white/gold Borromean/Milanese cut chasuble if possible (and if matching dalmatics, etc. are also available, all the better)

4) It would be helpful as well to obtain descriptions or lists of ceremonies, suggestions, etc. from those familiar with this rite, for making it as authentic to the Ambrosian tradition as possible.

5) Communication from interested persons willing to travel to attend or record this specical occasion in western New York State.

Responses to our above questions or other questions and comments may be sent to:

Excerpts of the choir and the Mass will be posted here on the New Liturgical Movement, and it is hoped that the entire event will be recorded and available for purchase. Details to follow.

Finally, for those interested in the culture of the Archdiocese of Milan, a
Milanese reception (with authentic food, music and exhibits) will follow the

(An Ambrosian Rite Liturgy celebrated in Milan)

Reference: See Una Voce's story on two Ambrosian Rite liturgies celebrated in Milan a number of years ago

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