I never thought the day would arrive so soon that HolySmack would need a section dedicated to the Extraordinary Form [EF] of the Roman Catholic Mass (because of rising interest and questions from friends!). This ancient liturgy is at least half millennia old (perhaps even 1000 years old, but it’s so ancient and complex in origin that it’s hard to say), and is known by many names: Traditional Latin Mass (TLM), Latin Mass, EF, Vetus Ordo, Tridentine Mass, Usus Antiquor, Mass of all Time, Mass of Pope John XXIII — but regardless of the name, it is the Mass that has ruled most of Roman Catholicism and evangelized the world up until the 1960s.
Keep in mind the EF is the Mass that inspired most of the saints, is the Mass our grandparents knew, and is the Mass that is rising again in availability and attendance among young Christians. To find out more about the EF Mass, please refer to these resources:
—Directory of parishes that offer the EF in Canada and the US: Ecclesia Dei
—Permission from Vatican II and Popes Saint John Paul and Benedict XVI to attend the EF here.
—Young adult groups dedicated to the EF: Juventutem (the 1st U.S. group started in Michigan!)
—And all HolySmack posts related to the EF: Chapel Veils, Communion Rails, Gregorian Chant (with samples here), Priestly Vestments, Ad Orientem (Priest Faces East), Latin Language, Genuflecting and the Last Gospel, a Tridentine Triduum experience, a Rorate Caeli experience
—My favorite introductory book on the EF and all things Mass: Treasure and Tradition (a picture review), and great texts if you want more depth: Resurgent in the Midst of Crisis, Noble Beauty, Transcendent Holiness
—Great blog by a priest who knows a ton on the EF and other Catholic things: Fr. Z
—And as always, feel free to post questions here or on the HolySmack FaceBook page! May God bless you and your beloveds.
— VIDEOS —
—Crash course introductory video from the HolySmacker himself:
—Excellent explanation on why the Mass should be ad orientem (facing East):
—Archbishop Sample’s explanation on the EF Mass (very informative and listenable):
—Detailed narrative and commentary on a Solemn High Mass by Bishop Fulton J. Sheen:
—Condensed video version of the Solemn High Mass (18min) to showcase how this liturgy flows, so you’re not completely unfamiliar when going the first time: