Ordination Rite in the Movies

Some of you may remember the 1963 movie “The Cardinal” which was based on the Book of the Same name.  The movie was about the life of a Priest, Fr. Stephen Fermoyle and shows the human struggles of a man called to be a priest. It is a fine movie and rather respectful of the Church, though for its time it was rather “edgy” to show priests as human. It  is an historically significant film because of what was happening in the Roman Catholic Church at the time it premiered — the Second Vatican Council. Though the film is set in the first half of the 20th century it premiered just as the Vatican II was underway and many of the issues touched upon in the film — the liturgy, the role of lay persons and women in the Church, rights of the mother vs. the child, mixed marriage, ecumenism — were being hotly debated by the bishops in Rome. The film added to that debate among ordinary Catholics.

Some one recently posted a clip of the film covering the ordination of Fr. Fermoyle to the Priesthood. It is beautifully filmed. One quirky thing about it however, and the reason I post it here, is the Entrance Procession. I wrote of the entrance procession earlier (HERE) . What is interesting is how fast the procession is in this movie! It’s off to the races! I wonder if they were trying to save film or if processions in the “old days” really were conducted that fast. Any way I thought this clip might be a nice footnote to that article below. Enjoy this clip.

3 Replies to “Ordination Rite in the Movies”

  1. I’ve seen this movie a million times and never noticed how fast that procession is. There is one other part of the ordination scene that has always bothered me, though. During the prostration the choir is singing the Kyrie, isn’t the Litany of the Saints sung at that point?

  2. There is a movie where there is an ordination of a priest and the Bishop(?) says the line “receive power to say Mass”. I have been trying to find this movie, with no success. It’s an older film, but I don’t know the name of it. (and I thought it was The Cardinal or Monsignor, so I ordered them – but it isn’t either one). I would sooo love to learn the title of this film, if you should happen to know which one it might be. Thank you.

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