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A History Of The Mass And Its Ceremonies In The Eastern And Western Church -Rev John O'Brien A.M.

According to the Roman Rite, the Creed is recited immediately after the Gospel, or after the sermon, if there should have been one. In the Mozarabic Rite it is recited just before the “Pater Noster,” in accordance with a decree of the third Council of Toledo, A.D. 589, and this in order that the people may receive the Body and Blood of our Lord in Holy Communion with hearts full of fresh faith and love (Summa Conciliorum, p. 124; Liturg. Mozar., Migne, p. 118, note).

Eastern Practice regarding its Recital.—The Armenians recite the Creed at the same part of the Mass that we do—viz., after the Gospel. In the Liturgy of St. James it follows soon after the expulsion of the catechumens. It is a little further on in the Liturgy of St. Chrysostom. The Nestorians recite it close upon the Canon, and the Copts immediately before the prayer of the “Kiss of peace.” So great a veneration has the Russian Church for the Creed that the great bell of the Kremlin tolls the entire time of its chanting, and with many of the nobles of the land it is customary to have it worked in pearls upon their robes of state (Holy Eastern Church, by Neale and Littledale, p. 32).

Ceremonies attending the Recital of the Creed.—With very little exception the Creed is recited precisely as the “Gloria in excelsis.” When the priest has come to the “et incarnatus est” he begins to incline the knee so as to touch the ground at “homo factus est,” and this to recall more intimately to mind the profound humility of our Divine Lord in coming upon earth for our sakes and taking our nature upon him (Romsee, iv. 118). The Carthusians make only a simple bow of the knee at this place, without touching the ground. According to the Roman Rite, the priest says the entire Creed at the middle of the altar before the crucifix. The Dominicans begin its initial words there, but finish the rest of it at the Gospel side, where the missal is. When they come to the place where the genuflection is to be made they move to the middle, and, having spread out the anterior part of the chasuble on the altar in front of them, kneel down and touch the ground as we do. They then return to the missal and finish the rest there. In the Masses that are said in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre at Jersusalem—which, it is well to state, are always de Resurrectione—instead of simply saying “et sepultus est,” it is of obligation to add the adverb “hic,” and say “was buried here” by way of specification of place (Vetromile, Travels in Europe and the Holy Land, p. 211).








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