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The Cistercians in Yorkshire title graphic

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Private masses

Side chapel at Kirkstall abbey
© Stuart Harrison
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Side chapel at Kirkstall abbey

As distinct from the community mass. These were celebrated by ordained members of the community, i.e. monks who were priests, in side altars or chapels. Specific times of the day were set aside for them to do so. Each priest required two assistants: a cleric to minister to him and a layman to serve the water and light the candle at the consecration. Whilst the Cistercians did not insist that private masses were celebrated each day, most priests tended to do so on a daily basis.