Sunday, December 23, 2007

Reader Questions

I am playing catch-up here on some requests for information on the part of readers. Unfortunately, I do not always have time to research all requests in depth, so I wanted to put them out there for our readership. Please answer in the comments.

Here are the questions.

1. One group of seminarians were curious to know any history of the use of the Missal stand in the liturgy. They had noted its near disappearance in the modern form of the Roman rite and were curious as to why as well.

2. "I am trying to find information about the manutergium - i.e. its dimensions, what kind of fabric it was made out of, whether it was adorned, etc. Can you direct me to any resource for this?"

3. "What guidelines or general rules of thumb, should be employed when
painting the interior of a church? The room is rectangular and has a
very low ceiling ( 8 feet no kidding). I would like to employ some
shadow and light and depth... Any suggestions, resources or people that I could turn to for some help?"

4. Fr. Martin Fox has a question on his blog about penance services where exposition of the Blessed Sacrament is taking place.

5. "What is the history of the form of the sacred Host? Today, there is an unmistakable form: round, white, stamped with an image. How long has that been the form?"

6. "As a future priest, I plan on celebrating Mass facing the “liturgical east” but am a little confused as to the times when the priest is to face the people during the first half of Mass (the Liturgy of the Word). The GIRM states that the celebrant faces the people after making the sign of the cross at the beginning of Mass (GIRM 86), but it makes no further mention of facing the people until the Orate Fratres (GIRM 107).

"This has left me with a few questions:

"Does this mean that the celebrant is to face the altar for the Opening Prayer, the Kyrie, the Gloria, the Creed, and the General Intercessions? [NLM: In the modern Roman liturgy, the priest would be at the celebrant's chair at this point, so it seems to me he would either face whatever direction the chair is oriented -- preferably at the side of the altar and toward it -- or possibly on a slight angle toward the people for this part of the modern Roman Mass.]

"Does he [turn to] face the people for the prayers (Dominus vobiscum…Sursum corda) right before the Preface?

"Is there a resource that can give me detailed rubrics for Masses ad orientem?"

[NLM: I'd probably start by considering the practice at EWTN.]

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