John Lilburne's journal about sitting for the Kyrie and Gospel verse at today's Mass at St Patrick's Cathedral Melbourne.



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2154 L Sun 3 Mar 2002

At St Patrick's Cathedral in Melbourne today the seminarians and seminary staff visited.

Since the main choir returned Archbishop Hart has been sitting for the Kyrie and Gloria. Now that it is Lent we do not have the Gloria, so he just sits for the Kyrie. I stand for it, as people would in every other church in Melbourne and following the 1975 General Instruction to the Roman Missal, n. 21:

... Unless other provision is made, at every Mass the people should stand from the beginning of the entrance song or when the priest enters until the end of the opening prayer ...

The three priests from the seminary (Michael McKenna, Greg Bourke and Paul Stuart) also decided to sit. I guess their approach was: "We do what the Archbishop does." This thinking seemed to continue for when the Gospel verse was being sung. The instructions from the Ceremonial of Bishops, n. 140, are:

... When the Alleluia begins, everyone but the bishop stands.

This is so that he can add incense and bless the person who is to read the Gospel. But the three priests seemed to decide "If he is sitting we should sit" and remained seated with him.

Some of the seminarians were altar servers. They have been instituted as lectors and so should do the readings, in accordance with the Lectionary for Mass, n. 51:

... When there are instituted readers available, they are to carry out their office at least on Sundays ...

But it did not happen, other readers were used.

Copyright J.R. Lilburne, 3 March 2002.