Category Archives: The Armchair Liturgist

The Armchair Liturgist: All Souls 2013

All Souls Day falls on a Saturday, something of an awkwardness for some parishes (like mine) that don’t regularly celebrate a Saturday Mass. Some communities celebrate with a “special” Mass, inviting people who have lost loved ones, and having a … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Vestment Cleaning Schedule

Advent is not too far away. Are your purple/violet/blue vestments ready? How often are your vestments cleaned? We have a parishioner who volunteered to oversee the dry cleaning of chasubles and stoles. We have a rough schedule to follow. Obviously, … Continue reading

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Armchair Liturgist: Big Feasts on Saturdays

This year the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross falls on a Saturday. This coming Saturday, in fact. This is the third of five feasts this year which, while not “high” enough to be obligatory holy days, are … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Mass on Civic Holidays

My parish ordinarily celebrates a weekday noon Mass. That time slot seems less than optimal for a civic holiday like Labor Day. It’s one of three days of the year in which we move 12:00 liturgy for a non-holy day to … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: First Communion Solo

A nearby parish celebrates First Reconciliation in second grade, First Eucharist in third. Setting aside for the moment the wisdom of that policy, we have parishioners who recently transferred back to us. But, lo! Their oldest child “missed” the sacrament … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Visual Observance of Feasts

A nearby parish has an artistically sensitive pastor. When I visit there, I often see icons or other images on feast days and during seasons. I have an icon of the Transfiguration, so I placed it in my parish’s narthex … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: A Parish Prays For Itself

My parish’s last two writers have included these in the Sunday intercessions the past two weeks: That members of the St. Thomas Aquinas Parish know that the Lord desires to answer our prayers and we only need to ask, to … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Names in the Intercessions

In my parish we mention deceased people by name in the Sunday Prayers of the Faithful, if the family requests it. We frequently mention the sick, though not always. Sometimes people prefer to remain anonymous. And once, someone was listed … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Hanging on a Priest’s Ear

Our parish’s new sound system includes those wireless microphones that fit over the speaker’s ear. Our departing associate pastor gave them a thumbs-down. But he also moves his head side-to-side quite a bit while speaking, and doesn’t always give a … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist Tries To Coordinate Mass Schedules

I played a wedding at our sister parish, St Cecilia, yesterday. They had posted a sign on the doors, something to the effect of “Our air conditioning system needs repair. We understand it will be a warm weekend, so if … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist Goes To Mass Easter Evening

The Roman Rite prescribes the account of the disciples’ encounter of the Lord in the Breaking of the Bread at Emmaus for an Easter evening Mass. During the main academic year, we provide a 7pm Sunday Mass with a few … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Acclamations During The Passion Reading

This might be in that twilight zone of things recently frowned on, but my parish has a long tradition of musical acclamations inserted within the Passion Gospels. I see the Lucan refrain of the thief on the cross used in many … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist Plans Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday will be something of a scramble in temporary worship conditions in my parish. Ordinarily, our church is conveniently located across the street from campus–the student union in fact. And we get droves of people for four Masses–one at … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Nativity Stations

I’ve seen here and there an effort to translate the experience of the Nativity of the Lord into a devotion akin to the Way of the Cross. As I make it out, Advent and/or Christmas deserve some particular spiritual pilgrimage. … Continue reading

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The Armchair Liturgist: Scripture Homework at Mass

The priest at daily Mass today dropped a piece of “homework” at the end of his homily. “Deuteronomy 11:12,” he said. “Look it up–that is your message.” I did look it up. It’s here. What do you think of this … Continue reading

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