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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 an STL in sacred liturgy at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
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Essentially the Missal of St. Pius V is the Gregorian Sacramentary; that again is formed from the Gelasian book which depends on the Leonine collection. We find the prayers of our Canon in the treatise “De Sacramentis” and allusions to it in the 4th century. So our Mass goes back, without essential change, to the age when it first developed out of the oldest liturgy of all. It is still redolent of that liturgy, of the days when Caesar ruled the world and thought he could stamp out the faith of Christ, when our fathers met together before dawn and sang a hymn to Christ as to a God. The final result of our enquiry is that, in spite of unsolved problems, in spite of later changes, there is not in Christendom another rite so venerable as ours.
— Fr. Adrian Fortescue (d. 1923)

Printable Card • “Prayers at the Foot of the Altar”
published 1 October 2017 by Fr. David Friel

OR PRIESTS and servers new to the Extraordinary Form, it is often helpful to have a card from which to read the prayers at the foot of the altar until they are memorized. Finding the “perfect” card, however, is more difficult than one might expect.

Incorporating the best features of the various cards I have seen, while eliminating a wide array of defects, I am pleased to present my own feeble attempt at this useful altar card. It is available here in .pdf format:

    * *  PDF Prayers at the Foot of the Altar

The file is set up in such a way that it is possible to print the card twice, using both sides of the same sheet of paper. After laminating and slicing the sheet once down the middle, you’ll have yourself two copies of the card.

What are the features of this card that I believe make it more useful than some of the other options available for purchase or download? They include the following:

1. The card presents the full text of Psalm 42, not simply the first and last words of each line.

2. It indicates where the Sign of the Cross is to be made with a “+” symbol.

3. Pertinent rubrics are included, in red ink.

4. Accent marks are included in the text.

5. The prayers for ascending the altar steps (Aufer a nobis and Oramus te) are provided.

6. Everything fits on a card half the size of a normal sheet of paper.

This card may be freely reproduced and distributed. Corrections and recommendations for improvement are quite welcome. I hope this resource proves useful to some of our readers!