Incense has a long history in Jewish and Christian worship, and is described beautifully in many places in the Bible (such as Psalm 141 in the Jewish Scriptures, and Revelation in the New Testament).
Incense is full of symbolism and wakes our senses to the holy. "From the angel's hand, the smoke of the incense went up before God, and with it the prayers of God's people." (Revelation)
At St. Mary's, incense is often used during the celebration of solemnities, holy hours, and other occasions. This requires the services of a
The incense is burned on charcoal inside a special metal vessel (
) suspended from a long chain, called a
is the person who handles the thurible during the processions and liturgy, as well as preparing the incense and charcoal beforehand.
for more information about serving as a thurifer.