in the Presence of a Great Prelate
October A.D. 2012
If mass is
said in the presence of a great prelate who is not occupying the
throne, the following is observed. By a great prelate is meant an
Ordinary in his diocese, a Metropolitan in his province, or a Cardinal.
1. If time
permits, the Celebrant should arrive before the prelate and stand on
the Gospel side, facing the Epistle side. He bows with a profound
inclination to the prelate as he arrives. If there is to be a
procession, then the great prelate walks behind the Celebrant as
usual. The Celebrant steps to the Gospel side after reverencing the
altar, and faces the Epistle side. When the great prelate has taken
his place in the choir, the Celebrant bows to him.
Celebrant asks permission to begin the mass and, having received it,
salutes the prelate again with a bow, bows or genuflects as
appropriate to the cross, and begins the mass.
3. At the
Confiteor, instead of saying "Et vobis fratres, etc." he
says "Et tibi Pater, etc.", inclining towards the prelate.
However, should more than one great prelate be present, he uses
"Et vobis Fratres, etc."
the Collect for Purity, and after having said "Oremus" as
usual, the Celebrant bows to the prelate and ascends the altar to
begin the mass as usual.
Celebrant performs the blessings of the incense at all instances and
of the water at the Offertory.
the Gospel, the Celebrant does not kiss t he book. The book is
brought to the prelate by the Deacon or, if there is no Deacon of the
Mass, by a clerk to kiss. If there are several great prelates of
equal dignity present, then none kiss the book, and neither does the
Celebrant kiss the book. If several great prelates not of equal rank
are present, then the one of highest dignity kisses the book. If
incense is used, then the Celebrant is censed, not the prelate.
7. At the
Offertory, if incense is used, then the Celebrant is censed with two
swings. The great prelate is censed with three swings. If there is
more than one great prelate present, then each receives three swings individually.
8. If the
Pax is to be given, then it is given by the Celebrant to a Clerk, who
then carries it to the prelate. He does not salute the prelate upon
arrival, but makes due reverance after the Pax has been given. If
there are several great prelates present, he gives the Pax to each
singly in order of rank or, if all are of equal dignity, then by the
most convenient order.
9. At the
Benediction, the Celebrant says "Benedicat vos omnipotens
Deus" as usual, then turns to the cross and bows, and then turns
to the prelate and bows again. He then continues the blessing
"Pater, et Filius, et Spiritus Sanctus" as usual, towards
the side of the church not occupied by the prelate. If the prelate is
in the center, then the benediction is given towards the Gospel side.
However, the senior-most great prelate may choose to give the
blessing himself, which same he gives wearing the biretta in the
usual form, beginning with "Sit nomen Domini," from before
the altar. But note that if there are several great prelates of equal
dignity, then the Celebrant must give the blessing.
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