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Ordained in 2011, Father Friel served for five years as Parochial Vicar at St. Anselm Parish in Northeast Philly. He is currently studying toward a doctorate in liturgical theology at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
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“In spite of what it is currently called, the music of these songs is not modern: this musical style is not new, but has been played in the most profane places and surroundings (cabarets, music halls, often for more or less lascivious dances with foreign names). The people are led on to rock or swing. They all feel an urge to dance about. That sort of “body language” is certainly alien to our Western culture, unfavorable to contemplation and its origins are rather suspect. Most of the time our congregations, which already find it hard not to confuse the crochets and the quavers in a 6/8 bar, do not respect the rhythm; then one no longer feels like dancing, but with the rhythm gone to pieces, the habitual poorness of the melodic line becomes all the more noticeable.”
— Unnamed choirmaster (Northern France) circa 1986

Assumption Mass
published 13 August 2014 by Fr. David Friel

OR ALL THOSE in striking distance of the Delaware Valley, please make note of the open invitation to the Assumption Mass being offered this Friday evening in Philadelphia. The Assumption Mass tradition began fourteen years ago as an act of gratitude to God for the establishment of Mater Ecclesiae, the first diocesan-owned and staffed TLM parish in the United States (part of the Camden Diocese). This is the first year that the Mass will be celebrated in the Cathedral Basilica of Ss. Peter & Paul in Philadelphia.

The Celebrant of the Mass, who will also deliver the sermon, is Msgr. Andrew Wadsworth. Originally a priest of the Diocese of Westminster, London, he is now the superior of the Oratorian Community of St Philip Neri, an oratory in formation in the Archdiocese of Washington. Msgr. Wadsworth has also served as Executive Director of the International Commission for English in the Liturgy (ICEL) since 2009, responsible for the English translations of Latin liturgical texts for use in the Anglophone world.

Each year, the Assumption Mass features terrific orchestral and choral music. This year, the Ordinary of the Mass will be the Missa in Angustiis, or “Lord Nelson Mass,” of Franz Joseph Haydn, sung with full orchestra. Other works will include the motets Salve Regina by Antonio Salieri, Salutatio D.N.I.C. by Ludwig Senfl, Beata Viscera Gregor Aichinger, the Adagio from Tomaso Albioni’s Concerto for 2 Oboes in G Major, the Hodie Maria Virgo by Luca Marenzio, and the Tantum Ergo by Mozart. The postlude will be Concerto for 2 trumpets in D Major by Giuseppe Maria Jacchini. The traditional hymns O Sanctissima and Hail, Holy Queen, arranged by the Music Director, Dr Timothy McDonnell, will also be sung.

This Solemn High Mass of the Assumption, celebrated in the Extraordinary Form, will begin at 7 PM at the Cathedral Basilica of Ss. Peter & Paul (18th Street & Benjamin Franklin Parkway). All are welcome.