Slightly pointless post really, but I did want to let anyone who checks the blog regularly know that I am just being lazy at the moment. I had some good ideas in the pipeline for some nice long posts, but the research was exhausting. Apart from working full-time I've got volunteer work on Saturdays and obviously on Sundays I'm normally in Church for most of the day. Hopefully I'll find the time before too long because it'd be a shame to see Ex Fide ex-blog. :-(
What a day. We had a lovely Solemn Mass today. Fr. Harker, who often comes to celebrate Mass on a Sunday, being retired, called in sick and our M.C. was away, so we we only had enough bodies for a Missa Cantata. A very dignified celebration too. I recently decided, without warning, and when Fr. Philip was away, to re-introduce liturgical osculations to the Mass. Those are the kisses that one gives to the right hand of the Celebrant of the Mass whenever passing things to Him. First you kiss the object (incense spoon, biretta etc) then his hand. When receiving something from the priest you kiss first his hand then the object being passed. They are normally ommitted during Masses of the dead. In previous discussions with the servers, we reached a consensus that although we've had good experience of serving the Old Rite, we're probably too squeamish to actually kiss our priest's hand. So two weeks ago, when Fr. Harker was saying Mass I just decided I was going to do them. Today, our regular thurifer, having last been with us under the old regime of no kisses, returned to S. Magnus and quite enthusiastically took up the osculations with no fuss. So I suppose they're here to stay. I'll definately have to beef up before I serve an Old Rite Low Mass on the Ascension just to make sure i'm not over or under-kissing.
Another piece of news is that the Papal Blessing I ordered has been framed and put up in the Sacristy. Luckily, its arrival roughly coincides with Fr. Philip's anniversary of priesting, so it can at least seem like the two things are related, a bit like a telegram from the Queen. I left it out in the crypt today and it attracted plenty of interest. It really is a handsome thing and it's nice to have a formal portrait of the Holy Father in the Sacristy. Our Sacristy is screened off from the Narthex, but peopele coming into the church can still see into the Sacristy through the grill, and they are now met with a lovely shelf-full of birettas, a large crucifix, framed vesting prayers and a certificate of apostolic blessing. It really looks like a real Sacristy, a place of silence, prayer and preparation before Mass. I'd like to think that Fr. Fynnes-Clinton, picture above, would approve of us.