Saturday, March 26, 2016

A Foot Note: Vestment changing


Fr Hunwicke, with his usual clarity of mind and humour has written on the Pope's new rite of pedilavium. As footnote I was interested to note that in the pictures of the rite His Holiness vests as a deacon, wearing his stole upon his shoulder. Priests in the Old Rite often vest and exercise their ministry as Deacon or Sub-Deacon, in New Rite this is less common. In fact many would suggest that this should not happen, even that in the New Rite it is positively forbidden. The Pope has answered this.

Now the Supreme Pontiff has clearly shown that it is something to be positively encouraged. Another Old Rite practice, that follows on from this, that he has obviously restored is 'vestment changing'. In the absence of a deacon at the Easter Vigil it would seem that it is more than legitimate for a priest to bless the fire and the Paschal Candle wearing, according to the current rite, his white chasuble and then to remove his chasuble, re-adjust his stole and change into a dalmatic for the Lumen Christi procession and the singing of the Exultet. Similarly, if a bishop should visit a one horse parish, it seem more than legitimate for the parish priest to assist him vested as a deacon, and if it is a two horse parish, for the assistant to wear a tunicle and act as Sub-Deacon.
"Roma locuta; causa finita est,"

15 comments:

Richard Edwards said...

Interesting thinking. For some it may seem too "fussy" but wearing the vestment appropriate to the action seems to be to be entirely good practice.

On the side of the angels said...

Theologically (and I'll probably be shouted down for this by the liturgists) a Deacon is not present 'in personal Christi' (merely delegated with that of the priest or Bishop in their IPC during the Gospel) and a Priest in a Christ-like role of Washing the feet should accordingly be dressed as a Priest - Benedict XVI had to revise Canon Law after the error of St JP2 in this regard - the Diaconal role is that of service to the Bishop in a unique limited way - as assistant - not primus - if it isn't there are major ramifications as widowed permanent deacons would be proscribed from presbyteral ordination and His Holiness has already permitted that taking the Benedictine amendment of not IPC as a now permissible entry which JP2 inadvertently blocked

Fr Ray Blake said...

Yes Paul, I don't think we should look for theological coherence with Francis, just gestures.

Pete said...

Perhaps he was just moving the ends of the stole out of the way to the side to save getting it wet; that was my first thought. Cannot tell from the picture if he is wearing a girlde.

philipjohnson said...

Fr.Gestures towards Tradition?

The Saint Bede Studio said...

Obviously Father is speaking tongue-in-cheek here.

It would seem that the Pope is not wearing his stole in the manner of a deacon (at least judging from this photo, there may be supporting footage) but that it has been skewed to one side or dislodged either to prevent it getting damp or becoming a trip hazard.

Deacon Augustine said...

OTSOTA, I find your post hard to follow - could you clarify please? I thought widowed permanent deacons were not permitted to be ordained as priests. Are you saying that this is no longer the case?

vetusta ecclesia said...


Bugnini and his pals seem to have invented a liturgical "norm" that vestments should not be changed during celebrations. So bishops have one mitre, Good Friday, the Easter vigil and weekly Asperges are conducted in chasubles of one colour.I think this diminishes the coherence of the rites (eg the Vigil of Easter and its first Mass) and has led to the near extinction of any cope but white in some parishes. (My late PP, an admirer of Orthodoxy, had the purple cope converted to an eastern chasuble)

Paul Hellyer said...

The Church is falling apart. Churches are closing. Parishes amalgamating. Congregations are getting smaller and older. Tradition has been marginalised. Why are you so concerned with such unimportant trivialities. It's Easter. He is risen. Let's rejoice in that world shattering event.

Fr Ray Blake said...

Paul,
Precisely because, "The Church is falling apart. Churches are closing. Parishes amalgamating. Congregations are getting smaller and older. Tradition has been marginalised."

Paul Hellyer said...

Christ has risen. Who cares if the Pope's stole is slightly skewed or a bishop can only have one Mitre.
Is this what Catholics should be thinking? What would a potential covnert think?

Fr Ray Blake said...

Paul,
Thos who say he or ny other priest can't, they care. I care that he shares my lack of care about it.

Matthew Roth said...

He always changes the orientation of his stole for the Mandatum.

What OTSOA says makes sense, especially in light of Fr. Hunwicke’s writing lately on the diaconate.

Matthew Roth said...

Destroying copes and using only white is insanity, because it places Benediction above the Divine Office.

Ben Yanke said...

The Saint Bede Studio, Pete, et al.

An examination of the video of the Mass shows he clearly was wearing it in the style of a deacon, not just moving it out of the way.