Sta,-1 recently had occasion to hear Mass at a large church in an important northern city. The preacher made a powerful appeal to the congregation to attend a procession of the Blessed Sacrament to be held that evening, complaining that on such occasions previously the church had been half empty. I returned that evening. The church was packed. The service began at 6.30, and consisted of the following : a hymn, long prayers Several in number, a long meditation read from a book, the Rosary, the Litany of Our Lady, another hymn and then a sermon (starting three-quarters of an hour after the beginning of the service and of quite average length). Another hymn followed and the procession did not begin till 7.40. It was the most beautiful and impressive I have ever seen, but how tiring the preliminary proceedings must have been to the many small children taking part!: and is it really necessary on the grounds of reverence and devotion to cram so much into an evening service that over 14 hours has to be spent in church out of the worker's day of rest and recreation?
I believe that this has a lot to do with the reason why so many Catholics " don't
go to Benediction." I plead for shorter evening services. especially in the summer, Even with Vespers or Cornpline together with a short sermon and Benediction, any well-organised service (without irritating pauses) can well be compressed into an hour, and if " devotions," even less. Might not a vastly improved attendance result? J. A. B. FISHER, Victoria Villa, Cleckheaton,