About this blogger:
A theorist, organist, and conductor, Jeff Ostrowski holds his B.M. in Music Theory from the University of Kansas (2004), and did graduate work in Musicology. He serves as choirmaster for the new FSSP parish in Los Angeles, where he resides with his wife and children.
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"No concession should ever be made for the singing of the Exultet, in whole or in part, in the vernacular."
— Fr. Augustin Bea, S.J. in the years immediately before the Second Vatican Council

1965 English Mass Demonstration "Sign Of Peace"
published 16 June 2013 by Jeff Ostrowski

ROBABLY NINETY PERCENT of my blog entries are “made-to-order.” In other words, I write them when I feel inspired. The remaining ten percent are not “time sensitive” — that is, I keep them in reserve for a rainy day. Many of these are articles I wrote years ago, but never published for one reason or another. Today’s blog entry is one of the “ten percent.” I decided to release it because I saw a discussion on the NLM Blog about the “Sign of Peace.”

Monsignor Francis P. Schmitt documented the tumultuous introduction of the Novus Ordo Missae (which is now called the Ordinary Form). We have quoted him in the past, and we shall continue to do so. There’s a lot more material and some is quite interesting!

In 1965, Msgr. Schmitt described a “Demonstration Mass” in which he took part. At the bottom of this blog, I give a link to the full article. Here is an excerpt from the article:

On the structural side, I would only mention the boy-scout hand-shake which replaces the Pax, and which the promoters wish to be fairly noisy. It is no reflection on the reverential, if let’s-play-house, attitude of the ministers and participants of the dry-run I observed to state that the lady with whom I shook hands accused me of trying to steal her bracelet.

Wow! So the handshake started all the way back in 1965! I didn’t know that. Here in South Texas, people give a “hippie peace sign” to one another in the pews. I remember being pretty scandalized when I first saw it. After all, this is Church! But I digress . . .

Here’s another interesting quote from Msgr. Schmitt about early attempts at the “Sung Canon,” which I wrote about towards the end of a rejected article:

The most successful portion of the demonstration musically, is the adaptation of the Canon of the Mass to the formula of the Exultet.

Finally, here’s the entire article:

      * *  1965 Article by Fr. Frank Schmitt: “English Mass Demonstration” [pdf]