Short and Simple Guide for Traditional Latin Mass or Novus Ordo Beginners

July 24, 2020 - 7:54am

Short and Simple Guide for TLM

or Novus Ordo Beginners.

Pray the Mass

(Ordinary and Extraordinary Form)


1. Arrive Early and Pray


It is really important to arrive early and pray before the Mass.  In general, a good way to structure your prayer is as follows:


  • Give praise and glory to God
  • Read the Epistles and Gospel and reflect on it.
  • Think about the times you have fallen and ask for pardon and mercy for your sins.
  • Pray for yourself, the Church, and your family, friends, any other petitions
  • Give thanks to God for all his blessing.


2. Attend with Attention, Reverence, and Devotion – Pray the Mass with the Priest.


If you are new to attending Mass in general or are starting to go to the Extraordinary Form/ Traditional Latin Mass (TLM), the best method is to just watch, and take it in.  Don’t get intimidated or overwhelmed.  Just prayerfully reflect on what you see and hear, even if you don’t understand everything.  Both forms of the Mass are more similar than some people let on. 


If you have been attending Mass for a while, no matter the form, you will eventually have a good grasp on the order.   Whether you attend the Extraordinary Form, Ordinary Form, Ordinariate, or an Eastern Rite you should be praying the Mass with the priest. 


Eventually you will need to pick up a missal and once you do, I would start by just reading the Epistle’s and Gospel and reflecting on them and slowly pray some of the prayers from The Ordinary (The parts of the Mass that don’t change from day to day).  You won’t be able to keep up with any of the Masses if you are new.  Just be patient and it will come with time.


When there are responses, try to focus on what you are saying.  Don’t just say them.  Pray them. 


3. Simple Guide to Get you Through the TLM or Novus Ordo



I. Penitential Act/Confiteor

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About:  A certain sin or sins that you have been struggling with and admit in your heart to falling short and ask for prayers and help.


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: Take away from us our iniquities, we beseech Thee, O Lord; that, being made pure in heart we may be worthy to enter into the Holy of Holies. Amen


II. Kyrie Eleison

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: How good and merciful is our Lord Jesus Christ for giving himself to us through His crucifixion despite our failings and constant turning away from Him. 


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: Lord, have mercy on us


III. Gloria in Excelsis

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: The creator of the universe, has every hair on your head counted and loves you with an unfathomable depth.  He is the good king who came to earth and showed us how to live.  He has suffered as we suffer and he has wept as we weep.  Our God knows what it is like to be you and wants to take away your sins and to forgive you.  He is a true King.


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: Glory be to God on high.  We praise Thee. We bless Thee. We adore Thee. We glorify Thee. For Thou alone art holy. Thou alone, O Jesus Christ, together with the Holy Ghost, art the most high in the glory of God the Father.


IV. Liturgy of the Word/The Epistle & The Gospel

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: We are people of the Good News.  Our God loves us and proved it through his suffering on the cross.  Have a heart filled with joy as you hear the readings and the Gospel.  The way of trust and love is Good News.


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: Cleanse my heart and my ears, O almighty God, and in Thy loving kindness so to purify me that I may be enabled worthily to hear Thy holy Gospel. Glory be to Thee, O Lord.


V. The Credo

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: Do you believe everything in the Nicene Creed?  Then be joyful, have hope, trust, and don’t worry so much. 


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: For us men and for our salvation, He came down from Heaven.  He suffered and was buried. And the third day rose again…and will come again in glory, to judge the living and the dead: and His kingdom will have no end.


VI. The Offertory

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: Pray for the souls of yourself, your family, and friends and the dead. Pray for the Church and any petitions you may have at this time.


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: We offer unto Thee O Lord, the chalice of salvation. May it ascend as sweet odor before Thy divine majesty, for our own salvation. 


VII. Liturgy of the Eucharist/The Consecration

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: “On the cross our Blessed Lord was looking forward to you, hoping that one day you would be giving yourself to Him at the moment of Consecration.  Today in the Mass, that hope our Blessed Lord entertained for you is fulfilled.  When you assist at the Mass He expects you now actually to give Him yourself…He passed through His consecration on the Cross that we might now pass through ours in the Mass.” (Sheen, 43-44)


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: My Lord and My God.  (Christ is truly present)


VIII. Lamb of God/Agnus Dei

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: Jesus Christ, the spotless Lamb of God fulfills the Old Testament by allowing himself to be slain for the forgiveness of sins.  The power of true, pure, selfless, and courageous love is demonstrated by the fact that he rose again, and conquered the consequence of our sin, which is death.


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: Let not the partaking of Thy Body, O Lord Jesus Christ, which I, all unworthy, presume to receive, turn to my judgement and condemnation; but through Thy loving kindness may it be a safeguard and remedy for my soul and body.


IX. The Communion

Ordinary Form/Extraordinary Form


Think About: During the crucifixion of our Lord he cried out, “I thirst.“

“Men may hunger for God, but God thirsts for men…He had already expressed it in the parable of the Lost Sheep, when He said He was not satisfied with the ninety-nine; only the lost sheep could give Him perfect joy…He comes to us, so that we cease to be men and begin to be children of God” (Sheen, 47-48, 52)


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: Into a pure heart, O Lord, may we receive the Heavenly food which has passed our lips; bestowed upon us in time, may it be the healing of our souls for eternity.


X. The Last Gospel

Extraordinary Form


Think About: The light of love and truth shines in the darkness of a fallen world. 


Short Prayer for Meditation from the Mass: Hail holy Queen, Mother of mercy, hail, our life, our sweetness, and our hope!   To thee do we cry poor banished children of Eve, to thee do we send up our sighs mourning and weeping in this valley of tears.  Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this our exile show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet virgin Mary.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.

That we made be made worthy of the promises of Christ.


We hope this helps!  Let us know how your first TLM or Reverent Novus Ordo Mass goes!



Tony and Kendra




Prayers are excerpts from 1962 The New Roman Missal by Father Lasance

Sheen, Fulton J. Calvary and the Mass. Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei, Ltd., 1996.



We are Tony and Kendra.

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