Sunday, February 17, 2008

The Stational Churches of Rome

For any of you who have ever wondered what the references to "stational churches" are in your usus antiquior missals, a friend from St John Cantius contacted me to let me know they have put up a piece on their site that speaks to this very subject.

Here's an excerpt:

The word “station” comes from the Latin word statio, meaning a soldier’s post. On special days the faithful of Rome, together with the Pope, would gather at a particular church (the ecclesia collecta) and then solemnly proceed to the statio, the church chosen to be the “post” where Mass would be offered. During the procession a litany would be sung or a psalm (which would later become the Introit of the Mass). Once there, the pope would “collect” the people and their petitions into a single prayer—the “collect”—and then begin the Mass.

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