Friday, August 26, 2011

Cenaculum Mobilensis (What I Did on My Summer Vacation, or Latin Isn't as Dead as One Might Imagine)

Salvete omnes!

I spent the first week of August at Visitation Monastery in Mobile, Alabama, where I participated in the annual Latin Immersion Cenaculum of the Familia Sancti Hieronymi,  The Invitatio stated, "Come for the good of Holy Mother Church, for the good of Catholic Culture, and for your own good."  This simple summary of the experience of the Cenaculum, while very true and succinct, does not do justice to the actual experience of the week.

Latin was the language of the week.  Everything, and I mean everything, was spoken in Latin.  We were about 30 participants who came together from several states in the US, as well as other countries, children and adults, laity and clergy. We ranged in our Latin ability from beginner to advanced, with both ecclesial and classical pronunciation. (listening to the classicist was like trying to decipher an accent! lol) We heard two lectures each morning and one in the afternoon. In addition, each afternoon a fun session was held for the tiro (beginner), which helped overcome hesitancy in conversation.  The adulescentes had brought their sports equipment, and every afternoon they played pugnifollis, AKA volleyball!   In the evenings, we were treated to various slide shows of religious sites in Italy and Sicily.   EWTN sent someone to film one of the days, and some of the participants were interviewed.   The last evening was the Celebrandi, kind of a group participation variety event.  Each participant could get up and sing, dance, play the piano, recite a poem, or whatever (in lingua Latina, of course!).

However, the week did not consist only of lectures, games, and conversation.  It truly was a retreat.  We assembled in the historic Arts and Crafts style chapel four times each day for the chanted Liturgium Horarium in alternatum.  After Morning Prayer (Matitudinem), the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass was sung in either the Extraordinary or Ordinary form.  Midday Prayer (Sextem) was followed by the recitation of the Sanctum Rosarium.  Two of the Vespers (Vesperum) services were Solemn, for the Feast of the Transfiguration and for Second Vespers of Sunday.  Night Prayer (Completorium) was followed by the Office of Readings(Lectionis). Each evening concluded with Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament and Benediction. 

Each meal was preceeded by the Angelus and the traditional Grace Before Meals.

For my schola cantorum buddies, here is a list of (mostly) what we chanted:

Missa IX,  Missa II, Missa XII(?), Missa de Angelis, Missa Orbis Factor
Credo I, Credo IV
The actual appointed Propers for each Mass!

At Benediction each night, we sang a few selections from the booklet Jubilate Deo:
Da Pacem
Te Deum
O Salutaris
Ubi Caritas
Tu Es Petrus
Ave Maris Stella
Tantum Ergo
Adoro Te Devote

The schola also sang a Palestrina motet at one of the Masses, but I did not write down the name of it.  The chanting of the Solemn Vespers used an assortment of Modes 3-8.


Cenaculum participants
(missing a few!)

Liturgium Horarum


stained glass windows


Tabernacle and Privileged Altar

                                               at the Celebrandi

posted by Domina Gaudia!

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