Wednesday, May 23, 2012

First Mass of a New Young Priest

The Society of St. Hugh of Cluny reports on the first Mass of a newly ordained priest of the Archdiocese of New York, Fr. Patric D'Arcy -- a native of Ontario, Canada. The Mass was offered in the usus antiquior in Blessed Sacrament Church. (Wonderfully, they report that amongst the sacred music sung by the schola was Allegri's haunting Miserere as well as parts from Palestrina's Missa Brevis.)

You can get all of the particulars on their site, but I wanted to not only show our readers some photos from the joyous event, I also wished briefly comment on the vestments which were used for the Mass. Without seeing them in person, certainly the photos tell the story of a qualitative set of noble beauty, further demonstrating the potential of various styles and forms of vestments within the context of the Roman rite. In that regard, I think they also represent one manifestation of the new liturgical movement.

There used to be more talk of priests and faithful of the "John Paul II generation"; clergy and faithful particularly influenced by that particular Pope. As I see photos like these and others of new young priests I find myself wondering, are we seeing the "Benedict XVI generation"?

Specifically with regard to the seminarians and the ordinands of recent years, my mind turns to the fact that Pope Benedict XVI has now been reigning as Pope for just over seven years; what that means in terms of seminary education is that we are now seeing the first graduating classes who have either had Benedict as the reigning pontiff for the entirety of their seminary career, or at least for the significant majority of it. (In the same way, amongst younger aged lay Catholics we likewise are beginning to see more and more of those for whom this pontiff will be particularly defining for them.) So again, I wonder, are we seeing the Benedict XVI generation; a generation which has been particular defined by the thought, not least of which the liturgical thought and practice, of Pope Benedict XVI?

If photos and stories such as these tell any story, the future looks hopeful indeed.

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