- From a musical point of view, it's as if the Second Vatican Council never
happened. A said mass with said Sanctus but a soloist singing the Schubert
And what was the story with "Panis Angelicus"? Did the organist forget to
accompany? Domingo and Ma sounded mighty strange on their own.
Music as post-it note to the liturgy.
Director of Music
St. Philip's Church, Etobicoke
- This is similar to how we buried my mother. We did have one photo of her as well.
Shalom b'Yeshua haMoshiach +Mar Michel Abportus mjthannisch@... Pastor, Congregation Benim Avraham http://www.freewebs.com/childrenofabraham/ http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Joe-Thannisch/1173094868 204 Sylvan St. La Porte, TX 77571 281-867-9081
--- On Tue, 9/1/09, Sandford MacLean <MacLean@...> wrote:
From: Sandford MacLean <MacLean@...>
Subject: Re: [liturgy-l] Re: The Egyptification of Funerals
Date: Tuesday, September 1, 2009, 8:42 AM
Paul Goings' description of the obsequies for his mother is ideal in many ways, but what I am struck by is the sensitivity to mourners' needs and schedules. When my father died on 2 January, 2006, it was decided to have the funeral Mass on the following Saturday, allowing friends to come without the difficulties of work and holiday celebrations. My father--who was a priest-- chose to be cremated. Brother priests saw to his vesting ( some of these priests nowadays really weren't so sure about the alb and amice, to say nothing of the maniple!). On Friday, like Paul's mother, the reception of the body and vespers of the dead. We chose to have the visitation in the parish hall. On Saturday the Burial Office was read, and later the bishop celebrated a Solemn Requiem Mass. While the church lacked a proper catafalque, a table was set up in choir (he was a priest), upon which was the vessel containing his ashes, covered in a black pall.
A purple stole was placed there, as well. Several months later, we interred my father's ashes in Ottawa, Ontario, in the family plot. The local parish priest said a low requiem mass, and my father was buried with his people using the rite from the English Ritual.
Looking back on all of this, I am struck by how "well" everything worked. Costs were kept to a minimum, and the rites of Holy Church was properly celebrated.
Thanks, Paul, for sharing your experience.
Sent: Tuesday, 01 September, 2009 09:13
To: liturgy-l@yahoogrou ps.com
Subject: [liturgy-l] Re: The Egyptification of Funerals
One alternative to the problem of dealing with the cremains that Mr Cowling refers to, and the recent custom of adorning the table on which they're placed in the church building with photographs, etc., is to return to the use of the catafalque, which is a coffin-shaped structure which was erected at the appropriate location in the church building and covered with the pall. The committal rites, in the older form of the Roman rite, were then performed over this structure when the body was not able to be brought to church, but could be regarded as "morally present," as when persons were lost to a shipwreck, etc.
It is my experience that full-body burials are, for non-Roman Catholics at least, becoming rarer and rarer. I think that this is true for several reasons. The first is that there are not many parish cemeteries with vacant graves any longer, at least in the U.S. But in many cases it is still possible to inter ashes in a parish columbarium. Then there is the comparative cost. My parents had pre-paid their burial costs many years ago with, I think, the Pennsylvania Burial Society, at a very low cost. When my mother died at home in 2005, a local subcontracting crematorium picked up the body in a nondescript van, and I was notified a few days later that I could pick up her cremains at their location in a nearby industrial park. She was buried from my parish church and interred in our columbarium. The funeral was some two weeks after her death, which allowed her only remaining sister, and various nieces and nephews to make travel arrangements. If I had elected
a "traditional" funeral, the expense would have been in the many thousands of dollars and it would have been attended by my wife and I and one local friend; too, she would have been interred in a secular cemetery, unable to "hear the blessed mutter of the mass." So it's easy for me to see why cremation has become so popular, even if it wouldn't necessarily be my first choice.
Liturgically, then, because funerals with cremains are becoming increasingly normative, our parish practice is to place the container in the catafalque for the funeral rites, which puts everyone on an equal footing. So, again for my mother's funeral, which was held on a Saturday, on Friday evening we had the ceremony of the reception of the body and then Vespers of the Dead were recited; on the next day we recited Matins and Lauds, followed by the Rosary and Solemn Mass. After the "funeral baked meats," the committal was held in the crypt chapel, the cremains in the meantime having been discreetly placed in the niche there.
I realize that this approach might sound very "fake" to some, but I believe that the symbolism of the coffin is still very powerful in our culture, even if exigencies don't frequently permit its more authentic use.
--- In liturgy-l@yahoogrou ps.com, Douglas Cowling <cowling.douglas@ ...> wrote:
> On 8/31/09 6:31 PM, "Lewis Whitaker" <lhwhitaker@ ...> wrote:
> > Most funeral liturgies (Episcopal, RC) I've seen also include casting the
> > earth onto the coffin as part of the rite. No disaffirmation at all.
> Except when the earth becomes a vial of sterilized sand which the funeral
> director uncorks at the proper moment and pours out in the shape of a cross
> I reserve all my indignation these days for the Exaltation of the Cremains
> which now disfigures funerals where the deceased has been cremated before
> the service. We now encounter tables with the urn surrounded by flowers,
> photos, teddy bears and helium balloons. It makes King Tut's tomb look
> I refer this as the Egyptification of the Liturgy.
> Doug Cowling
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