Not Quite Getting It Right

Furthermore, not every aspect of liturgy is prescribed. When presiding, a typical priest is supposed to do certain things, is free to do certain other things, and takes freedom to do even more. Some priests say, “I do the red and say the black.” They mean they do the rubrics and say the words as both are printed in the liturgical books. But they probably don’t. Virtually every priest does something that is not quite prescribed in the book, even bishops, even popes.

Take the question of preconciliar rubrics. Some priests wear the maniple, use a burse, limit the extension of their hands, press their canonical digits after the consecration, make a sign of the cross with the host before receiving or giving communion, and add swings of the censer. All those practices have been discontinued.

Paul Turner, Ars Celebrandi: Celebrating and Concelebrating Mass (Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 2021), 25-26.