September 09, 2007

Catholic Mass Backpacks

Am I the only one who has noticed that you need to bring more "materials" to Holy Mass these days?

Maybe it's just me, since I still have so much to learn and relearn.

I'm wondering with the two forms if more Catholics will start to look like Protestants carrying our packets of stuff into the Church? When I was a kid only Protestants and old Catholics carried books into Church.

The rest of us just winged it or referred to the paper xeroxed handouts at the door. Well, we basically had no idea what was going on anyway since we weren't taught anything thanks to Catachesis being so poor. Essentially, we just stood, knelt or processed when we were supposed to with no concept of "why" or "what".

Now, I feel like I bring a small library of reference materials "just in case"-especially when I'm going to a new parish.

Yesterday for the Mass of the Nativity of Our Lady I was packin':

* Rosary in it's small bag
* Small purse-sized guide to the Novus Ordo in English and Latin (very nice, because it's portable)
* St. Andrew Daily Missal (I like to read what was going on in the old calender on that date. A gift from Ray for my Confirmation that I cherish very much)
* Magnificat (current readings)
* My Prayer Book by Father Lasance (original copyright 1908, it has hymns, prayers and devotions in it. I have the 1968 reprint. One of the best items, I've ever purchased)

I used every single one of them. I don't quite have the Latin memorized yet and this Mass happened to be a Novus Ordo celebrated ad orientem in English with Latin interspersed (similar to the EWTN Mass). Yes, the parish had handouts at the door but the handouts did not have everything and I forgot to pick up their hymnal on the way in. Fortunately, I had Jesu Dulcis Memoria in My Prayer Book because that was one of the hymns!

Occasionally, I bring a Bible but I didn't today.

That's a lot of stuff!

Maybe we need Catholic Mass bags or backpacks to carry all this stuff? Or, perhaps, once I learn more I won't need all of it. For now, it's nice to have available what I think I may need so I can participate fully.

I'm not a fan of burying ones face in the Missal during Mass. I read it before the Mass starts to get the readings and refresh my memory. I may occasionally pick it up when the responses are coming up that I'm still struggling with as far as memorization but I try really hard to pay attention. I learn better by watching/listening first and then trying to memorize on my own later. You may learn differently or get more from the Mass by a different process, I'm just sharing how I do it.


Blogger japhy said...

Regarding the Novus Ordo in Latin... is the English Sacramentary used? What I mean is, does your priest use a Sacramentary specifically designed for saying the Mass in Latin, or does he use the one for saying the Mass in English (which has the Ordinary of Mass in Latin in an appendix)?

I'd really like to see, when the new Missal translations are complete, a Sacramentary published that alternated English and Latin on each facing page. That would be beautiful. (And then, of course, we'd need the priests to become blind in one eye...) ;)

September 09, 2007 4:10 PM  
Blogger swissmiss said...

Leaflet has a "Quiet in Church" kit or something along those lines (Terry could fill us in), for kids, but you could use one of those. It has a rosary (big colorful wooden one) and other things to keep you occupied...and quiet. I don't think a parent developed it because the first things the kids do is whack the rosary against the pews, over and over and over.

I usually only use the missalettes for the readings and Gospel. The Latin Mass I try to learn the responses outside of church so I can "participate," but have used the pamphlete that St. A's has for their NO Latin. When the New and Improved Old Latin Mass gets up and running, I'll have to learn things all over again ;}

September 09, 2007 5:29 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

japhy: Good question. I don't know.

swissmiss: LOL! I can see myself now. Taking those kits from the kids for myself! My parish has those little books available for kids too. Actually, they are very well done.

September 09, 2007 6:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Is that all you take?

Of course, 3 grandbabies under three, missal rosary etc--I have a sunday vest--one of those many pocketed things to hold it all!

Happy grandpa

September 09, 2007 10:48 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Happy Grandpa

Good point! As a single gal, I forgot that parents probably pack a lot of stuff for Mass all the time. Plus, kids!!

September 10, 2007 4:38 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

I use the Magnificat and the hymnals that are in church. :)

September 10, 2007 11:26 AM  
Blogger Kasia said...

Well, last year in RCIA we had class right after Mass, and were expected to bring our Bibles and Catechisms, each of which were about ten inches high by three or four inches thick, plus our RCIA binders. Did I mention our priest would have a stroke if we set our Bibles on the floor, even in a bag?

Father. The 10:15 Mass is standing-room-only. You want 34 of us to take up pew space with our bags or else flip these 20-something-pound bags on and off of our laps 15 times as we stand, sit and kneel?

I tell ya, we needed a Holy Retention Shelf to stack our stuff on on the way into Mass.

September 10, 2007 5:43 PM  
Blogger Ma Beck said...

I want to get one of those tote bags in the same vein as that "Better in Latin" one - the one with the lady on it that reads "Don't forget your mantilla!"
I think that would rock.

Missals, bottles, diapers, prayer book, rosary, etc. - all of it would fit!

I would be the envy of the ladies in my parish.

September 10, 2007 6:27 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Ma: I'd buy one!

Kasia: Holy Retention Shelf? LOL!

September 10, 2007 7:42 PM  
Blogger Maureen said...

But if you wear a mantilla, you have no excuse to wear your stylin' hat! I must wear the stylin' hat. Heck, I even wear it lots of times at regular church.

I planned to bring my rosary and one of my Mom's old missals to Mass last week, but forgot them when going out the door. (I would've forgotten my hat if it weren't on my head.) But they had missals. (I'm kinda glad I didn't have to pick up a yarmulke veil at the door, though. I know they wash 'em, but... I'm glad I had a hat.)

When I was a kid, I had a little prayer book/minimissal combo that I got at First Communion. I stopped carrying it to Mass sometime in junior high, I think. I never brought my rosary to church.

September 13, 2007 9:46 PM  

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