Saturday, June 06, 2009

Is this the Premonstraterian Rite?

I intended to go to Chelsford yesterday for the eve of St Norbert, I didn't manage it but Fr Hugh, the Prior directed me here for pictures.
I think it is Roman Rite, the ancient Premonstraterian or Norbertine Rite was very similar to Rite of Cluny with deacon's circling the altar with censors. Corpus Christi had three Benedictions of the Blessed Sacrament during the Mass itself, as well being celebrated before the exposed Blessed Sacrament. Splendid!
Recently Ecclesia Dei said Summorum Pontificum applied to the Ambrosian Rite and therefore presumably other Latin Rites, including those of religious orders, and maybe even the Sarum Rite. Glorious!
Happy St Norbert's Day!


skeman said...

I do believe that there is no possible way that Summorum Pontificum applies to the Sarum Rite. It would not be under the jurisdiction of Ecclesia Dei to make this decision. There have been celebrations of the Sarum rite in the last decade and such celebrations have been reprimanded as noted in Dom Alcuin Reid's Organic Development of the Liturgy.

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

The one's that are in my neighborhood celebrate the Roman Rite, though with the new news, that might be the Premonstraterian rite.

Rupert o.praem said...

This was indeed the Roman rite, though we hope to do a Premonstratensian Rite soon.

The Order never abandoned its proper rite as many did in the 1970s and so permission to celebrate it has never been needed by our communities.

Matthaeus said...

The Premonstratensian Corpus Christi Mass sounds glorious! It would be lovely to see this celebrated - especially in these days when attitude to the Blessed Sacrament are often so casual.

I am also intrigued by the deacons circling the altar with incense - am I right in assuming this occurs at the consecration / elevation?

If Fr. Rupert does have a Premonstratensian Liturgy soon, perhaps he could post a video on the web for us who cannot easily attend.

God bless,


Henry said...

Fr Martin should know. When the Norbertines were at SMM they brought a handsome and ancient book of the Order's liturgy with them. Sadly it was never used all the time they were here. Eventually we managed to get the occasional new rite Latin mass including singing with Gregorian Chant but it was for consenting adults in private. That was the first one for nearly a decayed.

I wonder if things might not have turned out differently if they had started using their old books regularly. As it was they fizzled out.

Richard said...


Quo Primum, the document of Pius V that introduced the Tridentine Rite, said:

"This new rite alone is to be used ... unless there has prevailed a custom ... which has been continuously followed for a period of not less than 200 years"

Summorum Pontificum clearly has no intention to over-rule Quo Primum. So to use the Sarum Rite you would have to prove that it was valid after Quo Primum - i.e. that at that point it had 200 years continuous history.

Unfortunately Quo Primum was in 1570 - Queen Mary died in 1558, and then Elizabeth's Act of Uniformity in 1559 imposed the Protestant Book of Common Prayer. Therefore you would need to show that the Sarum Rite continued "underground" for 12 years (and, earlier, through the reign of Edward VI).

It seems quite possible that it did so continue, but proving it might be difficult.

Richard said...

Bits of the Sarum Rite do sound splendid. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia it can use up to seven deacons and seven subdeacons on special occasions! It also used the flabellum.

But no genuflection - a deep bow instead.

Fr Ray Blake said...

Richard, I understand that at the restoration of the heirarchy, the re-introduction of the Sarum Rite was seriously discussed, but Wiseman and those with Ultramonatane sympathies were in the majority.
So why not take up the 1850 arguements.

Terry Middleton said...

We do know, and there is much documentary evidence, that Mass was sung publicly in Durham Cathedral on November 30, 1569, by Frs Holmes, Peirson and Plumtree on the occasion of the recociliation of the Bishoprick of Durham to the Holy See. This occurred during the Rising of the North led by the Earls of Westmorland and Northumberland, a revolt cruelly put down by the forces of Elizabeth 1. During the rebellion time, Mass was said in parish churches throughout the Bishoprick, and that Mass would, of its very nature, have been the Sarum Rite. Interesting.

Matthew McCusker said...


The Sarum rite was certainly still in use in 1570. There were very many 'Marian' priests still saying Mass in England prior to the arrival of priests from the continental seminaries.

John said...

Not the least of the more recent Sarum celebrations was one by Archbishop Mario Conti (when Bishop of Aberdeen) in 2000 to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Chapel of King's College, Aberdeen. Before the first of the two celebrations in Merton College Chapel there was consultation with the then Archbishop of Birmingham who saw no objection. The celebrant on that occasion who has posted the history of his celebrations on his blog. At the time of my typing, the link seems to be broken (or at least I cannot access it properly), but others might have more luck: