Offertory has also a special sense in the services of both the English and Roman churches. It forms in both that part of the Communion service appointed to be spoken or sung, during the collection of alms, before the elements are consecrated.
In music, an offertory is the vocal or instrumental setting of the offertory sentences (as in Gregorian chant), or, less common, the name for a short instrumental piece played by the organist, or hymn sung by the choir while the collection is being made.
In the Roman Rite Mass the Offertory chant verses in ancient times were followed by a Litany or response chant sung by the choir and the people.
In the Roman Missal of St. Pius V (Tridentine) and already centuries before Pius V's codification, the Offertory was reduced to the singing of only the antiphone. The priest recites the (antiphone) Offertory chants privately after the Dominus vobiscum. He then proceeds with the offering or preparing of the gifts (bread and wine), along with incensing the altar.