Mass at Westminster Cathedral to celebrate Divine Worship: The Missal

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A Beautiful and Noble New Missal

The new Ordinariate missal, called Divine Worship: The Missal, was officially presented to a group of supporters of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham on Monday 11 January. Organised by the Friends of the Ordinariate, the event took place in Westminster Cathedral’s Lady Chapel and followed a Solemn Mass according to the Ordinariate Form, celebrated in the chapel by Mgr Keith Newton.

7Among the guests who received a copy of the altar version of Divine Worship: The Missal were representatives of Westminster Cathedral, the London, Birmingham and Oxford Oratories, the National Shrine at Walsingham, the Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St Mary’s College, Oscott. Other guests included Charles Moore, who read a reading from Isaiah, and Mgr Vincent Brady, representing the Apostolic Nuncio. Fr Christopher Thomas, General Secretary of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, acted as the representative of the National Shrine at Walsingham.

2aDivine Worship: The Missal is approved by Rome for use by all Ordinariate clergy. Published by CTS, it came into use on the First Sunday in Advent last year. Much of the new missal is based on Thomas Cranmer’s Book of Common Prayer, and includes hallowed phrases such as “Almighty God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid…” and “We do not presume to come to this thy Table, O merciful Lord, trusting in our own righteousness, but in thy manifold and great mercies…”

5The Friends of the Ordinariate subsidised the cost of 46 altar missals, which were sent to UK Ordinariate groups. As such the charity, founded to support the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, wished to formally mark the publication of the Divine Worship: The Missal by presenting additional copies of it to those who have been particularly supportive of the Ordinariate since it was erected on 15 January 2011 – five years ago.

4During the event, a letter from Archbishop Augustine Di Noia OP, Adjunct Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and Chairman of the Interdicasterial Working Group Anglicanæ Traditiones (which devised the missal), was read out. In the letter, which was addressed to Mgr Newton, Archbishop Di Noia said:

“As you well know, as you have been working on establishing the foundations of the Ordinariate during these past five years, the Holy See has been working on a liturgical provision for the Ordinariates as foreseen in Article III of the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus. The new Missal is itself beautiful and noble for the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and the text contained within it is an eloquent witness of the diversity of expression made possible by the unity of faith, a fundamental insight of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.

“We can all be very grateful to our Holy Father, Pope Francis, for this new liturgical book. It is an historic publication, and all those involved with its production can be proud of their achievement. May this Missal become a tool for evangelization for all the Ordinariate groups in the United Kingdom, Australia and the United States, calling to prayer and right worship those who have come into full Catholic communion [and] those still on the road to full communion!”

Speaking prior to the event, Mgr Keith Newton said: “I am particularly grateful to the Friends of the Ordinariate for their generosity in providing copies of Divine Worship: The Missal to the various Ordinariate groups situated throughout the country. I would also like to thank the Cathedral authorities for making the Lady Chapel available for this special event. The Lady Chapel in Westminster Cathedral is a most fitting place in which to celebrate a Mass according to the Ordinariate Form and to rejoice in the publication of our new missal. I hope and pray that this missal will open up the treasures of Anglican patrimony to even more people throughout the universal Church and will also be an effective and important tool of evangelisation and true Christian unity.”

The Chairman of the Friends of the Ordinariate, Nicolas Ollivant, said: “We were delighted to be able to help the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham by assisting its various groups and missions to acquire a copy of Divine Worship: The Missal. This beautiful altar missal will prove to be yet another important step in the work of the Personal Ordinariates for former Anglicans, as envisaged by Pope Benedict XVI. It confirms the dignity and catholicity of many traditional forms of Anglican worship, and stresses in a concrete way that former Anglicans need not give up their heritage when entering into the full communion of the universal Church.”

(Press statement by the Friends of the Ordinariate)

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6 Responses to Mass at Westminster Cathedral to celebrate Divine Worship: The Missal

  1. Joseph Golightly says:

    Thanks for this. Did Forward in Faith and The Catholic League get copies as surely they were big financial supporters of the Ordinariate?

  2. Editor says:

    Nice to see the Mass cards (for Last Gospel, lavabo etc) and relatively good vestments. While I supported Archbishop Di Noia’s Ordinariate Mass in Westminster Cathedral in 2015, it did lack beauty. While Anglo Catholic conventions generally involve lots of lace, maniples and birettas, sadly these weren’t evident. Instead we had polyester chasubles. It’s important the Ordinariate does not blend in with banal Diocesan liturgy.

  3. Joseph Golightly says:

    (slightly shortened)
    I think there is a real danger here. Dear “Editor”, you need to understand that the Catholic Church is made of all sorts of liturgy but in all cases the Mass is being celebrated, by a priest who does not have to always dress up in lace and birettas etc. etc. Perhaps remove the planks from your eyes. …

  4. EPMS says:

    Yes, of course the unity of the Mass is a key point, and yet the existence of the Ordinariates is based on the idea that there is a way of doing things that expresses an Anglican Patrimony which has been made available to the Catholic church. If one attends an Ordinariate mass and cannot see or hear any significant difference between it and one celebrated at a diocesan parish it is hard to see what the point is. Does this mean that the diocesan liturgy is mean and inferior? There is a current of that thinking running through much chatter on AC, and of course it does not win the Ordinariates any friends in the larger Church, except those who are quite comfortable with the idea that typical Catholic worship IS mean and inferior, and these people are not really the friends one wants.

  5. CPS says:

    “Editor” is perhaps in danger of gaining a reputation for being rather judgmental of people and situations of which he may not always have full knowledge. This would be a great shame because he is obviously enthusiastic and supportive of the Ordinariate but I hope that he realizes that there will always be some diversity in the style of worship in the different Ordinariate groups and situations. St Agatha’s is in a unique position.

    The Mass at Westminster Cathedral for the festival in September was essentially a regular Cathedral Mass whereas this rather smaller celebration was in the Lady Chapel and specially laid on.

    Again, by way of further contrast, the celebration of the Fifth Anniversary of the Ordinariate at Most Precious Blood on Saturday was an Eastward-facing (the norm now at MPB) concelebrated Mass in the Ordinariate Use with music by Merbecke and Sumsion.

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