Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Preparing Santissima Trinita for the big day

The new parish of Santissima Trinita was not, of course, made ready of its own accord. The Saturday prior to the first Sunday Mass of the new personal parish for the usus antiquior in Rome involved a great deal of clean up work.

First, there was clean-up of the side altars whose candles needed to be straightened (they intend to get new candles but everything cannot happen overnight, so we did the best we could with what we had to work with), stray papers, used candles and old rugs removed, altar cloths straightened and their altar rail doors closed.

Fortunately, a number of Italian seminarians were present (in their cassocks) and helped significantly in this task:

The main sanctuary had to be straightened and its portable chairs and benches put in their place, as well as stray electronic audio equipment cleaned up. Beyond that, there was the task of pressing the albs and cassocks:

In addition, the sanctuary needed some work, including some basic cleaning and also the candles were replaced with the large candlesticks (themselves almost 6 feet in height) and their associated candles (approximate 8 feet in height).

(The altar before it was re-dressed.)

The shorter candlesticks and cross are removed:

The gradines cleaned:

The taller, cleaner candlesticks and cross come out of storage:

The candles go into the candlesticks:

The altar was also dressed for the occasion with precious reliquaries. In total, there were 14 reliquaries brought out for the festal occasion. The gold busts included relics of St. Gregory the Great, St. Pius V, St. Charles Borromeo and St. Augustine.

There were also relics of various apostles and evangelists present on the altar, as well as those of other saints. Ss. Trinita comes with a significant collection of relics and precious reliquaries.

When all was finally said and done, here was the final result for the high altar:

A full days work was put into the basic preparations for the first Sunday Mass, and much work yet remains.

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