Christopher Carstens

In Encountering the Words of Christ in the Mass, Christopher Carstens reflects upon the third edition of the Roman Missal, giving particular attention to the changes in the Mass texts.

Christopher Carstens holds a B.A. from the Oratory of St. Philip in Toronto, and M.A. in Philosophy from the University of Dallas and a M.A. (Liturgical Studies) from The Liturgical Institute. He is currently the Director of the Office of Sacred Worship for the Diocese of LaCrosse, Wisconsin, where he serves as Coordinator of Pontifical Liturgies, liturgical coordinator for the Permanent Deacon formation program, and diocesan Director of RCIA. He is an adjunct faculty member at the Liturgical Institute and a frequent presenter in liturgical conferences and parish education. He is a member of the Society for Catholic Liturgy and is married with four children. Mr. Carstens is one of the presenters of Mystical Body, Mystical Voice.

Todd WilliamsonIn this blog, Praying, Believing, and Living, D. Todd Williamson discusses the pastoral, spiritual, and ministerial ramifications of the revised English translation of the Roman Missal.  Todd's blog is updated every other week.

Todd Williamson is the current Director of the Office for Divine Worship of the Archdiocese of Chicago. He is the author of two editions of Sourcebook for Sundays, Seasons, and Weekdays:The Almanac for Pastoral Liturgy (2007 and 2008, LTP) and has contributed to subsequent editions. He is also co-author of Bringing Catechesis and Liturgy Together: Let the Mystery Lead You! (2002, TwentyThird Publications), and he has written for numerous periodicals (Rite, Pastoral Liturgy, Catechumenate, and Religion Teacher's Journal).

In addition to writing, he is a teacher and national speaker in the areas of liturgy and the sacraments. He is co-host of the monthly radio program, Focus on the Liturgy, which airs on the fourth Wednesday of every month on Relevant Radio 950 AM, in the Chicagoland area.

Todd has been the director of the Office for Divine Worship for eight years. As such, he has dealt with countless pastoral situations in regards to the liturgy. It is from this unique experience that he writes in this blog: breaking open the English texts and making connections to our spiritual and ministerial lives as people of faith.

A native of Pittsburgh, PA, Sandra Dooley moved to Los Angeles in 1999 after 18 years in Orlando, FL. where she spent 10 years as the liturgy director of St. Margaret Mary Parish in Winter Park. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education and a Master of Pastoral Studies degree from Loyola University in New Orleans, with emphasis in liturgy. She is an experienced church musician, religious educator and liturgist, and has been a committee member, coordinator and/or speaker at local and national conferences.

In June, 2001, Sandra joined the Office for Worship of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles as Associate Director. She was Director of the Office from April, 2003 through July, 2009. She also served on the Board of Directors of the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions (FDLC) from 2004 until her return to FL in 2009.

Sandy currently serves as the director of liturgy at St. Margaret Mary Church in Winter Park, FL, and as a member of the Board of Directors of the North American Forum on the Catechumenate.


Blog Posts
Dec 12

Written by: Sandra Dooley
12/12/2011 9:46 AM  RssIcon

At my parish, we are doing well with the transition, although I must admit that when I don’t remember to look at the worship aids with the new text, I still forget to say “And with your spirit!” It’s just going to take a while until the new responses come easily to my mind and lips.

And, if it will take a while for me and for others who have been working with and catechizing for months about the new texts, think of what it will be like for those who come to church only once or twice a year—on Christmas and Easter. Christmas is less than two weeks away. Have you planned what you are going to do to show hospitality to all those visitors and parishioners who come only on big feasts? I have maintained for some time now that if you have been away from the Church, now is the time to come back because we are all in the same boat—needing to follow along and read the responses because we are not yet familiar or comfortable with them.
When the Christmas crowd comes through the doors of your parish church, what will you do to help them engage in “full, active and conscious participation” which is called for by the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy?
At our parish, we are publishing worship aids to be used at all the Christmas Masses (even the 4 p.m. Christmas Eve Mass which is populated by hundreds of young children.) The worship aids will contain everything people need to participate in the celebration: all the texts of the peoples’ spoken parts and all the music. It will prevent people from having to juggle two or three books/worship aids during the course of the Mass. Admittedly, this is an expense and a time commitment that every parish cannot afford, but for large parishes with the resources, I would strongly recommend creating such a comprehensive worship aid. When the Mass begins, the cantor or perhaps one of the priests will let people know that everything they need is in the worship aid, and at various times during the Mass the priest will remind everyone of the page on which they can find the Creed, the Memorial Acclamation, the response to the Invitation to Communion, etc. Our priests have been doing this at every Mass since the First Sunday of Advent and it has helped quite a bit.
If your parish does not have the personnel or the resources to create a custom worship aid for the Christmas Masses, it would be helpful to at least have pew cards, unless you are using disposable missals that already have the new translation. And the priest will need to remind people to pick up those cards or disposable missals at various times during the Mass.
Some parishes have brought back commentators who stand at the microphone and help guide people through their parts. This is another way to remind everyone that some of our responses are different.
If your parish regularly projects music on a screen, make sure you project all the new responses and sung parts of the Mass—and, again, call peoples’ attention to it at various times during the Mass as a “gentle reminder” of the new responses.
More next week….

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