Friday, January 18, 2019

Another Historical Video of a Church Consecration

After seeing the video we posted yesterday of the 1959 consecration of St Michael’s Cathedral in Sherbrooke, Quebec, reader Jeffery BeBeau alerted me to this video of the consecration of St Joseph’s Cathedral in Edmonton, Alberta. (You can also watch it on the original site: Although it is in black-and-white, and rather fuzzy, in this one we see a lot more of the ceremony, which starts at about the 11:30 mark, and a good deal of explanation as well. This was celebrated in 1963 by His Excellency Anthony Jordan O.M.I., who was appointed coadjutor of the Archdiocese of Edmonton in 1955, succeeding to the see in 1964, and then resigned in 1973.

This ceremony was done after the 1961 revision of the second part of the Roman Pontifical, which shortened the consecration of a church very considerably, and partly reordered it. This reform also replaced the responsories traditionally sung during various parts of the rite with psalms sung in a manner similar to that of the responsorial psalm (coming soon to a revolution near you!); these can be heard chanted in the background in several places. At 17:45, we get a bit of that most rara of avises, a liturgical commentator, explaining the symbolism of the tracing out of the Latin and Greek alphabets on the floor of the church; he appears again at 21:50 to explain the anointing of the altar, and at 23:20 to explain the burning of candles on the five crosses on the mensa of the altar.

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