Introduction to the Traditional Latin Mass in Dundee
The Extraordinary Form of the Mass, the Traditional Latin Mass, began to be offered once more in St Joseph’s Lawside Convent Dundee on the fourth Sunday of Lent, March 15th 2015. The Lord Bishop of Dunkeld invited Father John Emerson (of the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter) to re-establish this liturgical apostolate at the request of the lay faithful of the diocese.
A Missa Cantata (Sung Mass) using the Missal of Pope St John XXIII (1962) is now offered every second and fourth Sunday of the month, though there are occasionally extra Sunday Masses.
Regular weekday Low Masses (that is, Masses without sung Mass parts) have also begun again in the Convent Chapel and take place on most Friday’s at 7pm. Holy Mass is preceded by Adoration and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament , with opportunity for confession in the traditional rite, followed by Adult and Youth Catechism classes, led by Father Ninian Doohan and Sister Mary Delphine respectively. The entire evening is concluded with Sung Latin Compline. Other weekday Low Masses have been offered on holy days of obligation, feast-days or days of special devotion.
There have also been a number of “firsts” for the Traditional Latin Mass Community in the Diocese: the first Pontifical Missa Cantata with the Nuptial Mass of Drs Joseph and Julie Geoghegan on the 18th of June 2016 at St Andrew’s Cathedral Dundee; the first Confirmations in the Old Rite on the 21st of August 2016, followed immediately afterwards by the first Solemn High Mass (that is, Holy Mass with Priest, Deacon, Sub-Deacon, and in this special case, also an Assistant-Priest).
We have also been graced with visits from priests from Australia, Belgium, Ireland and closer to home, from Papa Stronsay in Orkney, home of the Congregation of the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer.
Of course one of the most significant developments in 2016 was the establishment of the Schola, under the direction of Mrs Joan Dillon, foundress of the Academy of Sacred Music Scotland. Without the choir there would be no possibility of celebrating the sacred liturgy in its fullest, most solemn, and most beautiful form. The Schola benefited greatly from a Gregorian Chant weekend led principally by Canon Wulfrun Lebocq from the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest.
Equally necessary for the sanctuary is the training of altar servers. All men are encouraged to learn how to serve Holy Mass, and our team is always looking for new recruits.
The sacred liturgy makes us know Christ in His mysteries, as the Church continues Christ’s mediation, that His grace and merit would be applied to us. The detailed worship and observances of the traditional rite honours God, but we must not be content to stop here, the virtue of the divine mysteries is found in the interior:
“the divine Redeemer has so willed it that the priestly life begun with the supplication and sacrifice of His mortal body should continue without intermission down the ages in His Mystical Body which is the Church …
Whatever pertains to the external worship has assuredly its importance; however, the most pressing duty of Christians is to live the liturgical life, and increase and cherish its supernatural spirit …
Try in every way, with the means and helps that your prudence deems best, that the clergy and people become one in mind and heart, and that the Christian people take such an active part in the liturgy that it becomes a truly sacred action of due worship to the eternal Lord in which the priest … and the ordinary faithful are united together.”
– Venerable Pope Pius XII, Encyclical Mediator Dei.
“There is no reason why this celebration should be divisive or contentious. It will be celebrated for those who desire the Extraordinary Form and have a right to access it and who love the music and ceremony of the old Mass”.
- Bishop Stephen Robson, Dunkeld News