Sacrament of Holy
The Sacrament of Holy Orders
|According to the Traditional
Catholic Rite of Holy Orders
by A. Biskupek, S.V.D
Mission Press, 1954
May 4, 1942 Charles Michel, S.V.D. Provincial
May 4, 1942 + Samuel A. Stritch, D.D.
Archbishop of Chicago
Christ, our divine Savior, united in His person the
office of priest, teacher, and king. As priest He offered the great sacrifice
of atonement when He died on the cross; He anticipated this bloody sacrifice
in an unbloody manner at the Last Supper. As teacher He announced the glad
tidings of the gospel and brought to its completion the revelation contained
in the Old Testament. As king He gave to the world the law of salvation,
which all men must observe in order to save their souls. Christ Himself
ascended into heaven, but He willed that the work which He had begun should
be continued on earth. For this reason He instituted the sacrament of holy
orders, by which He conferred upon the apostles His own mission and powers,
and ordained that they in turn should transmit them to their successors.
He did this at the Last Supper; after He had changed bread and wine into
His own body and blood, and thus had celebrated the first Mass, He conferred
the same power upon the apostles by the words: "Do this for a commemoration
of Me." By these words the apostles were made the first priests of
the New Testament.
Order signifies the dignity, rank, and spiritual power, as well as the
state, to which a person is raised by the reception of orders.
We speak of holy orders, because there is more than one order.
The powers residing in the priesthood may be communicated by degrees; of
such degrees we have seven, and these are the orders. Not all orders are
equal as to dignity and importance. There are major and minor orders. They
will be spoken of more in detail the text to follow.
Before a candidate for the priesthood may receive any order, he must
be made a cleric by the reception of the first tonsure.
The sacred rite by which orders are conferred is called ordination.
The bishop and the ordinands, in cassock, or vested according to the order
which they hold, and carrying a burning candle in hand, usually enter the
church in solemn procession. The ordinands go to the places reserved for
them, while the bishop proceeds to the sanctuary, where he makes a short
adoration and then puts on the pontifical vestments.
Ordination begins with a reading of the mandate. However, if a dispensation
should have to be announced, the dispensation is read first.
The mandate is a solemn warning given in the name of the diocesan
bishop to all who present themselves for ordination not to receive orders
should they know themselves to be excluded therefrom by the law of the
Church; should they dare to do so, they would thereby incur excommunication.
Though, in our days, it can hardly happen that a candidate be present for
ordination who has not complied with all the laws of the Church in this
matter, the mandate impresses upon the candidate the supreme importance
and far-reaching consequences of the Ordination.
If ordination takes place outside Mass, the ceremonies begin at once;
if during Mass, they begin at some point of the Mass between the Kyrie
and the Gospel.
The Reading of the Mandate
The bishop, with his miter on, is seated on the faldstool before the
middle of the altar. The archdeacon bids all the ordinands come forward.
Let all who are to be ordained come forward.
The ordinands rise, go before the altar and kneel, holding the burning
candle in hand. The archdeacon now reads the mandate.
The Most Reverend Father and Lord in Christ, His
Lordship N., by the grace of God and the favor of the Apostolic See, Bishop
(Archbishop) of N.,
Should the diocesan bishop be a cardinal, the following is read:
The Most Eminent and Reverend Father and Lord
in Christ, His Lordship N., of the Titular Church of N., Cardinal Priest
of the Holy Roman Catholic Church, N., by the grace of God and he favor
of the Apostolic See, Bishop (Archbishop) of N.,
If the episcopal see is vacant, the reading of the mandate begins as follows:
The Most Reverend Lord N. N., chosen Vicar Capitular
of this diocese for the period of the vacancy,
Now follow the ordinations. Those to be ordained first are called by name.
All others return to their places; they will be called when the time for
their ordination arrives.
under penalty of excommunication directs and
commands all and each present for the reception of orders that no one
shall, on any account, presume to come forward and receive orders, who
perchance is irregular or else excommunicated by law or by his superior,
interdicted, suspended, illegitimate, of ill fame, or otherwise
forbidden by law, or belongs to another diocese without having obtained
the permission of his bishop, or has not been registered, examined,
approved, or called by name. Finally, no one of the ordinand is to leave
before (the Mass is finished and) the bishop's blessing has been
Holy Orders Home Page |
Sacrament of Holy Orders | Tonsure
Minor Orders | Porter
| Reader | Exorcist
Major Orders | Subdeacon
| Deacon | Priest
Litany of the Saints
| Veni Creator | Encyclical
of Pope Pius XI