Solemn Mass of the Assumption from the Toronto Oratory

Ecclesiastical art and architecture is always best viewed when its liturgical purpose is being fulfilled. Accordingly, I wanted to circle back briefly to the Toronto Oratory and its new apsidal paintings. I had mentioned that a solemn Mass in the usus antiquior was being celebrated on the feast of the Assumption and I wanted to share the images and video that were kindly provided to LAJ by the Oratory, set within the context of their new artwork.

One of the things you may recall me mentioning was how the lower images of the angels were set into a very appropriate and symbolic context with the altar, tabernacle and ultimately the sacred liturgy itself. Below is a photo that shows precisely what I meant.  This is an excellent example of how the liturgical arts should seamlessly integrate with one another -- or what we have called "synthesis" before; the harmonious relationship of the various parts to the whole.

Stepping back a bit, the liturgical action is also brought into symbolic relation to the Cross. A potent reminder of the potent link between the bloody and unbloody sacrifice; the Mass and Calvary.

Fr. Jonathan Robinson

Here too is some video, which gives an opportunity to showcase another important liturgical art: sacred music. Sacred music is something we haven't spoken of on here as much as we should as of yet, though I suspect that will change.  The Mass setting is Palestrina's Missa Assumpta Est.

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