THE MASS: 5. How the Mass has changed.

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The Mass 5

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The early Christians assembled for Divine worship in the house of one of their number which possessed a large dining room. This was because, as a persecuted minority, they could erect no public buildings. Mass was simple and basic. Moving on a few hundred years, the toleration of Christianity under Constantine I, and its adoption as the religion of the Empire under Theodosius I [379-95], had a dramatic effect on the development of the Mass. Congregations increased in size; and benefactions for the building and furnishing of churches resulted in the enrichment of vessels and vestments. At first, Aramaic was the language of the Mass, but this was quickly replaced by Greek. When Greek went out of current use in…

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