The event itself was nicely done - a very good selection of hymns, the ordinary sung in gregorian chant, some truly excellent organ playing, and a very pretty motet influenced by the French school (Tu es Sacrerdos) composed by choir member Ronan Riley.
But I have to admit, those of us who attended last month's traditional ordination in Canberra couldn't really help but lament the loss of the rich symbolism and beauty that has been stripped out of this most important of sacraments.
Timing alone will give you a flavour of just how much has been removed from the beautiful traditional ordination rite under the reforms - last night's novus ordo ceremony took one and half hours. The Canberra traditional ordinations last month took three. The ordination of Fr McCaffrey FSSP by Archbishop Wilson a couple of years back, in this same cathedral, took three and half!
Still, one of the features of the ceremony that I did particularly like was the customizing of the litany of the saints for the occasion - lots of Dominican saints of course!
Now I know some people are very uncomfortable about bi-ritualism, but Fr Mannes has a long association with the traditionalist community here, so it was nice that a large proportion of the local traditionalist congregation attended. And a very nice gesture of solidarity to see Fr Rowe and Fr Terrance Naughtin(and some fellow Franciscans), as well as the locally based traditionalist priests attending in choir. Good also to see the Australian Dominicans out in force!
The choir for the event was made up largely of Sydney (with a few local) traddies, and I gather was also singing for Fr Mannes' first Mass today.
There were also more than a few familiar faces from Brisbane, Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth in the congregation.
I see it as a nice sign of the growing confidence of the traditionalist movement that events we might once have eschewed in protest are now being attended (in force even). Somewhat to the discomfort, in fact, of those who are uncomfortable at the Holy Father (and the new Prefect for the Congregation for Divine Worship's) promotion of a more traditional approach, including things such as the reception of communion kneeling and on the tongue!
Nice too, to be able to have a little mini-blognic afterwards, with Roman from Et Clamor Meus (with his cassock and surplice getting a work out, so there Cooees!), and Joshua from Psallite Sapienter on his way to Tasmania.
Mr Kwok was also present taking photos, so hopefully some high quality piccies will shortly be available to supplement my rather less than expert efforts on a borrowed camera!
In any case, do keep Fr Mannes and Br Vincent in your prayers.