Sunday, November 05, 2017

Pontifical Mass at the Throne... a photo album ... kind of.

The throne or cathedra.
The full Pontifical High Mass is carried out when the bishop celebrates the Mass at the throne (or cathedra) in his own cathedral church, or with permission at the throne in another diocese. - Wiki

It takes a village.

Sometimes it seems people who love great pomp and extravagance especially love a Mass at the Throne because of it's drama.  It is very rich in symbolism and vestment, as well as ceremony.  Personally, I'm more attracted to a simple 'low' Mass,  very quiet and prayerful.  Often when I see notices for a Mass at the Throne to be celebrated here or there, it strikes me in the same way as an ad for the symphony or opera would - an invitation to a performance.  It involves a large number of clerics and servers for the celebration, which is why I stole the term, 'it takes a village'.  Indeed it does, which explains the notices and invitations (beyond a parish or diocesan boundaries) to attend.  I have no doubt quietly assisting, or hearing and watching the elaborate ceremonies and solemn choreography can be a contemplative, prayerful experience, but I'm fine with the Ordinary Form of Mass, and/or, the simple Low Mass.

Ceremonial stockings of silk, sometimes interwoven with gold threads, and even heavily embroidered, worn by the celebrant of a pontifical Mass. Originally worn by priests, they were reserved about the eighth century for the exclusive use of bishops, a privilege recently extended to lesser prelates. In colour they correspond to the chasuble, but are never worn with black. - NLM

Things difficult wear w/out assistance.

This could be where the phrase "four sheets to the wind" came from?

Church floors can be dirty.

Grand entrance.

It can be very cold in European cathedrals.

All vested at the throne.



The source and summit, the Eucharist.



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I love a simple Low Mass.

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*Buskins can be worn by laymen now as well.


  1. Actually, there is a form of Pontifical Low Mass for the EF for a bishop. Maybe you'd be more comfortable with something like that?

    1. I'm fine with Mass as it is - sorry to give the impression I'm unhappy with Mass in any form, or that something is wrong with a Pontifical Mass. It's hard to post on the subject without coming off either way. I go to Mass in my local parish, which is just fine with me. I'm grateful for the Ordinary Form.

  2. Somewhere in the world, wherever he is, Fr. Z is drooling (and maybe even hoping for the red hat..and I'm not taking about that society for old ladies!)

  3. I ask you gentle reader which form most resembles Our Lord's Last Supper?


    Don't want to crash the festivities but this caught my eye just now. Another lone gunman kills innocent folk while they are in church on a Sunday morning.

    Lord Jesus, remember all of them in your most tender mercy. Little children and elderly are among the dead.

    1. Something every day - or at least every week - it seems like. :(

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  6. Another eruption of evil. There is an old saying, "Rome is burning." The rest is "and Nero fiddles."

  7. Two of those guys look familiar


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