Sarum Order of Mass in English

I have just added the Surum Order of Mass in English in its full version with the rubrics and a simplified version for use at the altar which presumes that the priest has learned the ceremonies. I find this methodology used in Dominican missals from the late nineteenth century, and the effect is highly satisfying. When a priest knows what he is doing, it is pleasant just to have the text to read – though after some time, we begin also to know the liturgical texts by heart. I once knew a cathedral canon in Paris who could say any mass from the Roman missal without a missal!

The translation follows the Anglican Missal and Warren’s translation very closely. It will ring familiar to Anglicans accustomed to the Book of Common Prayer.

You can copy this text into the DTP software package of your choice and print it out in a little booklet or on A4 pages recto-verso for being put into a ring binder. Change the fonts and font sizes to taste and adjust your pagination as required. Add drop capitals as desired after having rewritten the first word in upper case.

Reminder: download and install the Liturgy font to get the Maltese crosses and the versicle and response signs that correspond with “+”, “V.” and “R.”. I recommend using the Book Antiqua font which is installed on most computers as part of the standard Windows package. It is sober, elegant and easy to read.

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3 Responses to Sarum Order of Mass in English

  1. Timothy Graham says:

    I’ve been curious about the blessing of bread since reading St Therese of Lisieux’s biography – she says that she and her sisters helped to distribute after Mass on Sundays. In the Sarum order, though, the blessing of bread comes in the text at the beginning of the Mass… although is it merely a grouping of the blessings together that results in it being placed here? Would the ritual place for the blessing and distribution of bread have been after the Last Gospel, for distribution to non-communicants?

    • The use of blessed bread in France (and medieval England) is very ancient, mentioned in the Council of Nantes in 658. Each household in turn brings bread to the church to be blessed and distributed to the faithful at the end of Mass. Before the singing of the Epistle, sometimes before the beginning of Mass, two altar boys preceded by a verger carry a kind of stretcher on which the bread is placed. The priest recites a prayer of blessing, sprinkles holy water on the bread that is presented, and finally kisses the person holding the lighted candle and the pax-brede. The remains of this non-consecrated bread are distributed to those who do not go to communion, in the same way as the Antidoron in the Byzantine Liturgy. The faithful immediately eat the bread with respect, having made the sign of the cross. Like the Eucharist, the person needs to be fasting. It is considered an honour for a family to provide the bread on a given Sunday.

      I put all this in the present tense, but the custom is totally obsolete in most places.

  2. Thank you, Fr.; that translation is a real blessing.


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