On newly reconciled The Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer's site there are a whole series of pictures of their celebrations for the Assumption. Before the altar is this amazing catafalque, draped in white and decked with flowers and candles, on the top you can glimpse a shrouded statue of the Mother of God.
I know that in the Eastern Rites of the Church the erection of such a catafalque is normal, in some places some form of funeral rite is celebrated together with a procession. That is about all I know. Has anyone further knowledge of this ritual?
I was a bit dissappointed by the number of people who came to our Assumption Day celebration, it was about half what it would have been before their Lordships moved the Dominical Holy Days to the nearesy Sunday. I had spoken about the obligation of attendng Mass last Sunday, and the importance of taking the day off to pray and celebrate if it is possible.
An Evangelical Initiative
One of my young Slovakian couples told me that for the last two years they always tried to take the day off on the great feast days, to come to Mass, to pray together and to have a party for their English non-Catholic friends, "just so we can talk about the joy of the feast to them", apparently it was something I said to them about "sharing the joy of faith", a few weeks after their arrival in Brighton. Partying seems like a very gentle evangelical initiative.
There are one or two of my parishioners who would love the idea of toasting the Blessed Virgin under each of her titles from the Litany of Lorretto with a gentle explanation of each. I understand this was or is a popular devotion amongst recruits in one pious Polish regiment. I am not sure how far they got with a small slug of 75% proof Vodka for each title.