High Solemn Mass Commemorating All Faithful Departed


November 4, 2017
7:30 pm in the Chapel

Byrd Mass for four voices
Harris Faire is the heaven

In the chapel on Saturday evening, November 4th, we will celebrate the lives of All Faithful Departed. We will rejoice with the saints in heaven for the lives we knew and for those whom we did not know. A Solemn High Mass will be observed this evening; during which time the Propers will be chanted and the Epiphany Choir will sing the Mass to a setting by William Byrd, one of the most prolific of Renaissance composers. English poet Edmund Spenser wrote a beautiful text, which was set to music by William Harris, called “Faire is the Heaven.” As the bells toll for each life we acknowledge, for the hovering of incense which will surround us, and for each prayer spoken and sung, we will remember them. “Faire is the heav’n Where happy souls have place In full enjoyment of felicitie; Whence they doe still behold the glorious face Of the Divine, Eternall Majestie.” Come to Epiphany this night. Be inspired. Be transformed. Be nourished by the presence of the Divine and see the image of such endless perfectness which is the kingdom of heaven.

St. Augustine said, “If we had no care for the dead, we would not be in the habit of praying for them.” The Commemoration of All Faithful Departed (also known as All Souls’ Day) began being celebrated in the Middle Ages to offer special prayers for those who had died in the past year.

Solemn Mass (Latin: missa solemnis), sometimes also referred to as Solemn Eucharist, Solemn High Mass, or simply High Mass, requires parts of the service to be sung and the use of incense. Sanctus bells will also be used during the service to call attention to particular moments in the liturgy.
The Epiphany Choir will sing at this service.