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

So careful is the Church to prevent innovations from entering into this part of the Mass that she forbids any one to meddle with it under pain of incurring her most severe censures. She will not even permit a correction to be made in it for fear of destroying its antiquity. We shall mention a few cases in point. It is a well-known fact that the Canon terminates at the “Pater noster”; yet we find the word Canon printed in every missal from the first prayer, or “Te igitur,” to the end of the Gospel of St. John. This is evidently a printer’s blunder; but because it is of a very ancient date the Church has allowed it to stand, and printers to the Holy See are strictly forbidden to change it in printing new missals. A still more striking instance is the following: As far back as the year 1815, when devotion to St. Joseph, the spouse of the Blessed Virgin and foster-father of our Divine Lord, was making rapid headway, the Sacred Congregation of Rites was earnestly besought to grant permission to add the name of this venerable patriarch to this part of the Mass, one of the reasons assigned for making the request being that many persons had a particular devotion to him. The request was not granted, the reply to the petition being negative; and this was denominated a response urbis et orbis—that is, one binding in Rome and everywhere else.








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