Masses at the Restored High Altar

We are grateful to all our benefactors and to all the talented craftsmen who have worked hard on repairing and restoring the stonework and stained glass in the apse of the church, which is dedicated to the Fifth Glorious Mystery – The Coronation of Our Lady and the Glory of all the Saints. The High Altar with its beautiful marble, mosaics, alabaster and metalwork has also been completely cleaned, and we are now in the final phase of re-gilding the walls of the apse, the tabernacle, and the High Altar itself.

From the very beginning, the High Altar with its Tabernacle and Exposition Throne has been the central focus of this beautiful church; this is its heart. And since Apostolic times, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass has been celebrated with the Priest and people standing on the same side, facing the so-called ‘liturgical East’, in anticipation of the Lord who promised to return from the East. Turned together to the Lord, the Priest and ministers and laity express outwardly an important interior turning of our minds and our hearts and our whole lives and beings towards the Lord who comes to us in the Holy Mass, present on the Altar.

Therefore, from Sunday 25 April onwards, the 12 noon Solemn Mass will be offered at the High Altar. This ‘Ordinary Form’ Mass will be in English, as usual, with Gregorian chants and choral motets sung by the choir as usual. The readings will also be read in English, with lay readers as usual. The only difference is that the Offertory and Eucharistic Prayer will be prayed by the Priest at the High Altar.

On the same Sunday 25 April, the Dominican rite Sung Mass, which is an ‘Extraordinary Form’ Mass in Latin, will resume. This Mass (which used to be at 4pm on Sundays) will henceforth be at 6pm, sung at the High Altar; this is the only sung EF Mass on a Sunday in our Archdiocese of Westminster. Where possible, sheets with English translations of the readings and prayers will be provided.

So, from 25th April, the Sunday evening schedule at the Rosary Shrine will be as follows: Adoration from 5pm; Solemn Vespers (sung by the Dominican community) at 5:30pm followed by Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament; Dominican rite Sung Mass at 6pm.

Our Sunday morning schedule remains unchanged: Mass at 8:30am (said) and 10am (Family Mass), with confessions from 9:45am and 11:45am.

All are very welcome indeed, and we hope that this full liturgical life, offering all that the Church’s rich Tradition allows, will be of service to you, and help you to feel at home in Our Lady’s Rosary Shrine, where together as one community but in a legitimate diversity of forms we can, in spirit and in truth, worship the one true and living God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Masses at the Restored High Altar

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