Thursday, August 13, 2020

Photos of the Recent Solemn Carmelite Mass

Last month, we shared a video of a Mass celebrated in the traditional Carmelite rite at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Middletown, New York, the motherhouse of the order’s North American Province. We are glad to now be able to share some pictures of the ceremony, courtesy of Genevieve Holmes. This Mass was the work of more than a year of research and collaboration, done with the permission and encouragement of Fr Mario Esposito, OCarm, Prior Provincial of the Carmelite Friars Saint Elias Province, as an official Year of Vocations event. To properly celebrate it, a variety of liturgical texts were consulted under the guidance of the celebrant, Fr Lucian Beltzner, OCarm, who offered this Mass in his youth. Research and liturgical support was provided by the Laudate Omnes community at St. Joseph’s in Troy, NY, the parish at which Fr Beltzner regularly offers the Traditional Carmelite Rite; Fr Donald Kloster of the Diocese of Bridgeport served as deacon, and  Mr. James Griffin served as the subdeacon and designed the booklet for this Mass, which you can consult here.

A procession took place before Mass, including the major relic of the jawbone of St. Simon Stock, to carry the relics of the Carmelite saints to their places at the high altar.
Following the procession came the chanting of the Carmelite Litany of the Saints. Mass began with the Veni Sancte Spiritus and responsory, followed by the Asperges.
Carmelite prayers at the foot of the altar. The Carmelite Confiteor specifically invokes the prophet Elijah, and is similar to the Dominican one.
Incensation of the altar
The celebrant reads the texts of the Missal at the sedilia while the subdeacon chants the Epistle.
After the chanting of the epistle, the chalice is prepared at the sedilia, on a corporal spread on the lap of the celebrant.
Imposition of incense before the Gospel
The deacon chants the Gospel.
The homilist for this Mass was Father Nicholas Blackwell, OCarm.
The beginning of the Creed. This position of the ministers in the shape of a cross is the standard position to which they return consistently throughout the Mass.
As in most medieval Uses of the Roman Rite, the celebrant stretches his arms out in the form of a Cross at the Unde et memores.
Ecc Agnus Dei
Distribution of Communion
Before the final blessing.
The Last Gospel
The liturgical ministers, and Carmelites who attended in choir.

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