Pray Tell continues its series on the liturgical history of Collegeville. The sub-series “From the Archives” reprints some of the Liturgy Committee meeting minutes from 1963 to 1969. This sub-series is a behind-the-scenes look at liturgy in Collegeville during and immediately after the Second Vatican Council.
The next record from the Liturgy Committee:
Minutes of the Liturgy Committee
September 2, 1966
Present: Fathers Daniel, Godfrey, Aelred, Gerard, Emeric, Simon, Kieran, Bruce, and Brothers Gerard and Dominic.
The first point dealt with was the use or disuse of gestures at the Concelebrated Conventual Mass. It was emphasized that the extension of both hands at the Hanc Igitur should be retained. The pointing to the elements of bread and wine at the words of consecration is to be omitted. The concelebrants may extend their arms for the Our Father. It was again re-emphasized that the chief celebrant’s voice should prevail and that the other concelebrants should follow his pace in a discreet tone. It was agreed that the concelebrants should remain in the church for part of the recessional hymn. The exit route was also briefly discussed. It was pointed out that the present slipping out at the end of the stalls looks a bit too casual. Maybe all the concelebrants could come out into the sanctuary for the final hymn, but that creates a problem for books. A second suggestion was that all process out from the aisle between the large and small sections of the choir. Finally, it was stressed that freedom for personal opinion must be respected wherever the rubrics themselves allow for one or several variations on a given point.
A second point brought up pertained to the readers at Mass and in the refectory. It was hoped that Brothers as well as Clerics should read in both these places. A suggestion that a sign be posted for Brothers who are interested was opposed by one or the other who believed that they should be hand-picked. Others did not like this idea of eliminating some automatically. A proposal was then made that Father Dominic be asked to take charge of interviewing and preparing all readers for Church and refectory. This would give all a chance to volunteer, but knowing beforehand if they did not produce well, they would be dropped. All liked this idea. If Fr. Dominic did not have the time for this, Fr. Daniel said he would be willing to perform this service to improve the caliber of reading.
The third topic discussed was that of the experimental horarium. All in general liked the new horarium. It was hoped that it be continued into the school year since many have not been home and that this would be the acid test of the schedule. As for the schedule itself, the time of the Mass at 5:00 was liked by all, though one or the other thought the possibility of a 12:00 noon Mass should be explored. The length of the service seems to be less of a problem than the routine and tediousness of its performance, it is psychologically tiring. It was hoped that some experimentation be forthcoming at three nocturne offices also.
The problem of tabernacles was once again raised. The following suggestions were made: 1) Place of reservation of Blessed Sacrament be the Assumption Chapel with the Sacrament reserved in the ambulatory for Communion purposes, but not for public veneration, 2) the Blessed Sacrament be moved to the present holy oil cabinet, which is presently unused, to the right of the throne on the back wall. The possibility for this under present diocesan legislation seems highly unlikely however. #1 would be possible under the present legislation.