Liturgy in Collegeville: From the Archives – Part XXXVII

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

January 11, 1967

Present: Fathers John, Emeric, Michael, Aelred, Simon, Brice, Daniel, Kieran, Rhaban; Brothers Gerard and Dominic; Mr. William Churchill.

Report from St. Vincent’s (Abbey) Meeting 

Father John noted that the full minutes from this meeting will be sent to St. John’s shortly and all will receive a copy. The meeting was attended by all the houses of the (American-Cassinese) congregation as well as by two monks from the Swiss Congregation and two from the English Congregation. The chief point of agreement was that there should be a total sharing with one another in the congregation of what is being done in each house. Whatever new forms may be tried out should be also sent to St. Vincent’s from where it will be passed on to other houses for their study and possible adaptation. At present St. Mary’s Abbey is using the English translation of the Confraternity Edition. Archabbot Rembert believes the final form of an English psalter will probably be either from the Grail translation or the Jerusalem Bible translation.

Church Unity Octave, January 18-25

Rather than work out an individual Bible service for each evening to replace Matins, it was decided to take the Scripture readings and orations from the Church Unity Octave Prayers for 1967 and structure them into the Liturgy of the Word of the Conventual Mass. Fr. Michael was appointed to take charge of this work.

A Review of English Office brought out the following recommendations of the committee:

  1. The Alleluia in the psalms is to be recited by one side of the choir. At present neither side is certain who is to take it and its recitation is rather weak.
  2. The lectern be placed in the center of the choir, in front of the Abbot’s throne, so that the reader can face the whole choir as well as any people present in the main body of the church.
  3. Fr. Daniel and Rhaban should work out a simple format for the recitation of the hours of Terce, None and Compline.
  4. Fr. Rhaban and Mr. Kling work out together the proper placing of microphones and call in an expert to work out a satisfactory sound system in the church.
  5. Fathers Aelred, Michael and Rhaban work out recommendations for simplifying the present complications of blessings, responsories, versicles, etc. in the different offices.

FM Radio Broadcast

It did not seem a desirable idea to broadcast either the Office or the Mass in its present form. Since the committee was not previously consulted officially about playing a specific role in broadcasting there was little to offer in the form of definite suggestions. Fr. Aelred suggested a sort of “canned chapel service” which could be worked out with records, psalmody and short readings.

Unresolved Business

Should there be one acolyte or two? Who should be an acolyte? How should an acolyte be selected?

Poor lighting in parts of the church.

Respectfully submitted, 

Bruce, osb


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