Cloistered Dominican Nuns Corpus Christi Monastery

Dominican Chant: A Tune-Up

Dominican Rite

Rev. Brother Gabriel, O.P. with the community and Charo, Prioress of the Dominican Laity

 

Our monastery is very blessed to have our Dominican friars so close to us.  Every week one of our brothers would come and teach our young sisters in the Novitiate classes as part of their initial formation.

During the past three months, Rev. Brother Gabriel Mosher, O.P. of the Western Dominican Province has been coming to teach the sisters classes in Prayer, Lectio Divina, Study, and Liturgy.  Yesterday, Brother Gabriel came and gave our community a ‘tune-up’ on the Dominican chant as we rehearsed  and prepared for the Dominican Rite Solemn High Mass next Saturday.

Dominican Rite2

Our Dominican life is shaped by and reflected in the liturgy at the solemn high Mass according to the Dominican Rite. The more ancient the rite, the more layers there are.  For us, there are: the choir, several servers, the subdeacon, the deacon, and the priest. All have their roles and responsibilities and many times, two or more are to do something at the same time. When each performs their own tasks properly and at the proper time, it is like watching a solemn dance, beautifully choreographed. Each circles the action at the altar as the celestial bodies orbit the sun in the sky. One cannot simply jump into the role of another without disrupting these movements and causing disruption at the abandonment of their own designated tasks. Then, at the moment of consecration, all action stops. The subdeacon, deacon, and servers take their places gathered behind and around the priest. The community is gathered and all eyes are on the altar as the priest elevates the Holy Sacrament. The silence of the moment is broken only by the melody of bells.

It is in this noble simplicity of the Dominican liturgy that our life as Dominicans, and the community, will be manifested.  We hope that you will be able to join us for the Mass on May 16th and experience the beauty for yourself!

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