The Third Sunday of Advent or Gaudete Sunday will be observed in a celebration of Solemn Mass at St. Stanislaus Church, State Street at Eld Street, New Haven, this Sunday, December 17, at 2:00 pm. The Reverend Richard Cipolla, Pastor Emeritus of St. Mary’s Church, Norwalk, will be the celebrant and homilist, and The Reverend Peter Lenox, Episcopal Vicar for Liturgy and Worship, Diocese of Bridgeport, will serve as Deacon. The Schola Cantorum of the St. Gregory Society will sing the Gregorian chant for the service.
Gaudete Sunday marks the midpoint of Advent. As on Laetare Sunday, the midpoint of Lent, the penitential character of the liturgy is relaxed; the organ is played, flowers are permitted on the altar, and violet vestments are replaced with rose. The Introit at Mass exhorts Christians to rejoice at the coming of Christ at Christmas in anticipation of His Second Coming at the end of time.
Saint John the Baptist preaches in the Gospel at today’s Mass, “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord … the latchet of whose shoe I am not worthy to loose.” Following John’s exhortation to prepare for the coming of the Lord, the Church urges her faithful in the Communion Antiphon to “take courage and fear not: behold our God will come, and will save us.”
Music for the liturgy to be sung by the Schola Cantorum of the Saint Gregory Society. will include the Missa Cum jubilo (Vatican edition IX) chant ordinary, the Gregorian proper for Advent Sunday: “Gaudete in Domino semper,” motets by Nicholas Renouf (“Ne timeas Maria”) and Palestrina (“Alma Redemptoris Mater”), the Advent Hymn, “Veni Emmanuel,” and organ music by Jean Titelouze and Guillaume-Gabriel Nivers.