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The "Gloria in Excelsis"

http://www.sspx.co.uk/images/stories/masspics/mass14.jpg

Except during penitential or 'sorrowful' times of the Church's year, the Priest begins the solemn hymn to the Blessed Trinity: " Gloria in Excelsis " ("Glory to God in the highest").  The first words of this hymn are those that the Angels sang to the shepherds on Christmas night.  The remainder of the prayer is a development of the Angelic Salutation, calling to mind God's greatness in heaven and our source of confidence in Him on earth.

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