http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_14vrv7ni7HM/TLYyK0PS85I/AAAAAAAABU8/h4xBT0R8kQU/s1600/20101013225550_D0064009.jpg

 

Arquivo do blog

segunda-feira, 30 de setembro de 2013

O catequista é aquele que guarda e alimenta a memória de Deus – Papa na missa para o Dia do Catequista na Praça de São Pedro

 



RealAudioMP3

Hoje Jornada do Catequista, o Papa Francisco presidiu à missa na Praça de São de São Pedro para cerca de dois mil catequistas vindos de várias partes do mundo em peregrinação à Sé de Pedro e para tomar parte no Congresso Internacional da Catequese, realizado nos últimos três dias em Roma, no âmbito do ano da Fé. Com o Santo Padre concelebraram numerosos bispos e padres da igreja universal, entre os quais D. Salvatore Fisichella, Presidente do Conselho Pontifício para a Promoção da Nova Evangelização, que lhe dirigiu a palavra no final da missa.

Na sua homilia o Papa deixou-se inspirar pelas palavras do Profeta Amós que diz: “Ai dos que vivem comodamente (…) e não se preocupam dos outros”. Palavras duras – disse o Papa - mas que nos chamam a atenção para o perigo que todos corremos. O perigo de termos como centro de tudo apenas o nosso bem-estar, sem nos preocuparmos com os outros, com os pobres; o perigo de - tal como o rico citado no Evangelho - perdermos a nossa identidade de pessoa, o nosso rosto humano, e de termos como rosto e como identidade apenas os nossos haveres.

Mas porque é que acontece isto, perguntou o Papa, respondendo que isto acontece quando perdemos a memória de Deus:

Se falta a memória de Deus, tudo se nivela pelo eu, pelo meu bem-estar. A vida, o mundo, os outros perdem consistência, já não contam para nada, tudo se reduz a uma única dimensão: o ter. Se perdemos a memória de Deus, também nós mesmos perdemos consistência, também nós nos esvaziamos, perdemos o nosso rosto, como o rico do Evangelho! Quem corre atrás do nada, torna-se ele próprio nulidade – diz outro grande profeta, Jeremias. Estamos feitos à imagem e semelhança de Deus, não das coisas, nem dos ídolos!

E lançando o olhar à extensa Praça de São Pedro, repleta de catequistas (entre os outros fiéis) o Papa perguntou-se:

Quem é o catequista”? É aquele que guarda a alimenta a memória de Deus; guarda-a em si mesmo e sabe despertá-lo nos outros. É belo isto!

É belo isto, prosseguiu o Papa, referindo-se a Nossa Senhora que, depois de ter recebido o anuncio do Anjo de que ia ser a mãe de Jesus, soube, de forma humilde e cheia de fé, fazer memória de Deus.

A fé contém a memória de Deus, da história de Deus connosco, do Deus que toma a iniciativa de salvar o homem - continuou o Papa, afirmando que “o catequista é precisamente um cristão que põe esta memória ao serviço do anuncio: não para dar nas vistas, nem para falar de si, mas para falar de Deus, do seu amor, da sua fidelidade. Falar e transmitir tudo o que Deus revelou, isto é a Doutrina, isto é a doutrina na sua totalidade, sem cortar, nem acrescentar”

Uma tarefa não fácil, a de guardar memória de Deus e despertá-lo na no coração dos outros, pois que isto compromete a vida toda –continuou o Papa, recordando que o próprio Catecismo não é senão memória de Deus, memória da sua acção na História, presença de Cristo na sua Palavra… e aqui o Papa dirigiu-se directamente aos catequistas:

Amados catequistas pergunto-vos: Somos memória de Deus? Procedemos verdadeiramente como sentinelas que despertam nos outros a memória de Deus, que inflama o coração (…)? Que estrada seguir para não sermos pessoas “que vivem comodamente”, que põem a sua segurança em si mesmos e nas coisas, mas homens e mulheres da memória de Deus?

Como resposta o Papa sugeriu as indicações dadas por São Paulo na sua carta a Timóteo e que podem caracterizar também o caminho do catequista, isto é: procurar a justiça, a piedade, a fé, o amor, a paciência, a mansidão. E rematou:

O catequista é pessoa da memória de Deus, se tem uma relação constante, vital com Ele e com o próximo; se é pessoa de fé, que confia verdadeiramente em Deus e põe n’Ele a sua segurança; se é pessoa de caridade, de amor, que vê a todos como irmãos; se é “hypomoné”, pessoa de paciência e perseverança, que sabe enfrentar as dificuldades, as provas, os insucessos, com serenidade e esperança no Senhor; se é pessoa gentil, capaz de compreensão e de misericórdia

**

No final da missa, e antes da oração mariana do Angelus, o Papa agradeceu todos, especialmente os catequistas vindos de tantas partes do mundo e dirigiu uma saudação particular a Sua Beatitude Youhanna X, Patriarca greco-ortodoxo de Antioquia de todo o Oriente, definindo-o irmão e dizendo que a sua presença nos convida a rezar mais uma vez para a paz na Síria e no Médio Oriente…

Saudou, entre outros, também um grupo de peregrinos de Assis vindos a Roma a cavalo, os peregrinos da Nicarágua, país que celebra o centenário da fundação canónica da Província eclesiástica… e concluiu recordando que sábado foi proclamado Beato na Croácia, Mirislav Bulevisic, sacerdote, morto como mártir em 1947.

E no meio meio dum tripudio de bandeirinhas amarelas e brancas, cartazes com frases saudando o Papa, rostos sorridentes e num pano de fundo de cânticos, o Papa foi dando a mão, saudando prelados, padres, catequistas, fieis… primeiro a pé e depois no automóvel papal até à Via da Concilição cheinha de gentes de mãos no ar a acená-lo e sauda-lo com gritos de alegria…

RealAudioMP3

João XXIII e João Paulo II serão canonizados conjuntamente a 27 de abril de 2014. CANONIZACIÓN DE LOS BEATOS JUAN XXIII Y JUAN PABLO II. Papa ha decretato che i Beati Giovanni XXIII e Giovanni Paolo II siano iscritti nell’Albo dei Santi il 27 aprile 2014.

João XXIII e João Paulo II serão canonizados conjuntamente a 27 de abril de 2014, II domingo da Páscoa, domingo da Divina Misericórdia



O Papa Francisco presidiu esta manhã, às 10 horas, no Vaticano, a um Consistório ordinário público com os cardeais presentes em Roma (foto) , para aprovar as causas de canonização de João Paulo II e João XXIII, estabelecendo que tal tenha lugar a 27 de abril de 2014. Trata-se do segundo domingo do tempo pascal, Domingo da Divina Misericórdia, celebração instituída por João Paulo II e na véspera da qual ele próprio faleceu, em 2005.
João Paulo II foi proclamado beato por Bento XVI a 1 de maio de 2011, na Praça de São Pedro. A Igreja celebra a memória litúrgica de João Paulo II a 22 de outubro, data do início de pontificado de Karol Wojtyla, em 1978, pouco depois de ter sido eleito Papa. João XXIII foi declarado beato pelo Papa João Paulo II, a 3 de setembro de 2000. A sua celebração litúrgica tem lugar a 11 de Outubro, data da abertura do Concílio Vaticano II, por ele convocado.
O último Consistório público ordinário tinha tido lugar a 11 de fevereiro passado. Foi nessa ocasião que Bento XVI anunciou a sua renúncia ao pontificado.

CANONIZACIÓN DE LOS BEATOS JUAN XXIII Y JUAN PABLO II


Tal como estaba previsto, esta mañana a las 10, en la Sala del Consistorio del Palacio Apostólico Vaticano, durante la celebración de la Hora Tercia, el Santo Padre Francisco celebró el Consistorio Ordinario Público para la Canonización de los Beatos Papas Juan XXIII y Juan Pablo II.
En el curso del Consistorio, el Papa ha decretado que los Beatos Juan XXIII y Juan Pablo II sean inscriptos en el Libro de los Santos el 27 de abril del próximo año 2014, segundo domingo de Pascua y de la Divina Misericordia.

 
CONCISTORO PER IL VOTO SULLE CAUSE DI CANONIZZAZIONE DEI BEATI GIOVANNI XXIII E GIOVANNI PAOLO II
Questa mattina, alle ore 10, nella Sala del Concistoro del Palazzo Apostolico Vaticano, durante la celebrazione dell’Ora Terza, il Santo Padre Francesco ha tenuto il Concistoro Ordinario Pubblico per la Canonizzazione dei Beati:



- Giovanni XXIII, papa

- Giovanni Paolo II, papa.



Nel corso del Concistoro, il Papa ha decretato che i Beati Giovanni XXIII e Giovanni Paolo II siano iscritti nell’Albo dei Santi il 27 aprile 2014, Domenica II di Pasqua, della Divina Misericordia

domingo, 29 de setembro de 2013

The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. by Elizabeth Wang

The Mass is like a window into time, through which we are present to the Saving Sacrifice of Christ, as Mary looks on





Introduction

  • How to Pray – Preparation, by Elizabeth Wang
  • How to Pray: Basics, by Elizabeth Wang
  • How to Pray: Perseverance, by Elizabeth Wang
  • How to Pray: The Mass, by Elizabeth Wang
  • Union with God and the Mass, by Elizabeth Wang
  • Holiness, by Elizabeth Wang
  • What is Mary Like? – by Elizabeth Wang
  • The Purpose of the Priesthood – by Elizabeth Wang
  • The Moral Life – by Elizabeth Wang
  • Communion with the Trinity – by Elizabeth Wang
  • Three Divine Persons, by Elizabeth Wang
  • A Spiritual Story – by Elizabeth Wang
  •  

    The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.


    Remember the reason for our confidence, hope and devotion, whenever we gather before the altar. We belong to Christ's Church; and Christ's whole Church of earth, Purgatory, and Heaven is praying here at the Holy Mass, offering one, marvellous Sacrifice to the Father.

    Welcome Christ at the Consecration, as the priest holds up the Sacred Host. Speak to Christ in the silence of your heart.

    Thank Jesus for having died for you, as the Chalice of His Precious Blood is held up to view, when the wine has been consecrated.

    Remind yourself that when you're present at the Offering of the Holy Sacrifice it's as though you're at the foot of the Cross. We can be sure that Jesus is Really Present, praying to the Father on our behalf, asking for forgiveness and Salvation.

    Take heart from the Church's teaching that this Mass and the sacrifice of Calvary are one and the same Sacrifice, offered here now, in our presence, in reparation for sin, as Christ prays to the Father on our behalf; and Christ's prayer includes all our needs and all our good intentions.

    'Open' your heart and soul very fervently to God the Father, as you unite yourself, interiorly, with Christ, as the priest holds up the chalice and paten which contain Christ's Sacred Body and Precious Blood, and says: "Through Him, with Him, in Him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honour is yours, Almighty Father, for ever and ever."

    Add a fervent 'Amen' - by which you confirm that you yourself offer that honour and glory to the Father, through Christ, in the Eucharist.

    This text is published as Chapter 4 of How to Pray (Part One: Foundations), pages 31-38, entitled 'How to Pray the Mass'

    EXPLANATION OF THE PRAYERS AND CEREMONIES OF HOLY MASS FROM NOTES MADE AT THE CONFERENCES OF DOM PROSPER GUÉRANGER

    EXPLANATION OF THE PRAYERS AND CEREMONIES OF 


    HOLY MASS




    TAKEN FROM NOTES MADE AT THE CONFERENCES OF

    DOM PROSPER GUÉRANGER


    ABBOT OF SOLESMES.

    TRANSLATED FROM THE FRENCH BY

    REV. DOM. LAURENCE SHEPHERD

    MONK OF THE ENGLISH BENEDICTINE CONGREGATION.

     



    CONTENTS


    Preliminary Notice
    Preface

    Judica
    Confiteor
    Incensing of Altar
    Introit
    Kyrie
    Gloria in excelsis
    Collect
    Epistle
    Gradual
    Alleluia. Tract
    Sequence
    Gospel
    Credo
    Offertory
    Incensing of the Altar, &c.
    Lavabo
    Suscipe, Sancta Trinitas
    Orate, Fratres
    Preface
    Sanctus
    Canon of the Mass
    Te igitur
    Memento of the Living
    Communicantes
    Hanc igitur
    Quam oblationem
    Consecration of the Host
    Consecration of the Wine
    Unde et memores
    Supra quae propitio
    Supplices te rogamus
    Memento of the Dead
    Nobis quoque peccatoribus
    Per quem haec omnia
    The Lord’s Prayer
    Libera nos, quaesumus
    Agnus Dei
    Prayers before the Communion
    Communion
    Post-Communion
    Ite, missa est
    The Blessing
    Last Gospel

    Appendix - Ordinary of the Mass

    fonte

    Rediscovering the Holy Sacrifice




    Rediscovering the Holy Sacrifice

    by Aidan Nichols OP


    In its combination of theological power and lyricism, the Pope¹s new encyclical, Ecclesia de Eucharistia, invites comparison with St Thomas Aquinas, finds Fr Aidan Nichols OP.

    The Pope has been reflecting on the Eucharist, and the result is a little masterpiece. Why was it written? And what, in substance, does it have to say?


    Judging from the internal evidence, The Church from the Eucharist has three aims in view.

    First, it wishes to offer us an ordered account of Eucharistic doctrine, putting first things first. Among other things, that means giving pride of place to what was becoming, in many places, a rather well-kept secret. The Mass is not primarily a communion meal — not even one where we feast on the Real Presence, or anticipate the banquet of eternal life. First and foremost, the Eucharist is the Holy Sacrifice. It is the Paschal mystery in a sacramental sign. Everything else about the Mass flows from there. That is why the atmosphere of its celebration can never be jolly camaraderie (or the dutiful keeping of an obligation, for that matter). The tone of the feasting has always to be set by penitent gratitude for Calvary and the awed joy of the Easter tomb.read...

    THE ROMAN MASS , Articles and Books online


    FONTE
    Articles and Books Online:


    THE SACRED HEART READER:
    MOMENTS DIVINE

    THE HIDDEN TREASURE OF THE HOLY MASS

    See Also Works Listed in the Holy Eucharist Directory

    Michael Davies Excerpts

    IT IS THE MASS THAT MATTERS
    POPE LEO XIII ON TRUE LIBERTY
    THE PRIESTHOOD AND THE COUNCIL OF TRENT
    LITURGICAL TIME BOMBS IN VATICAN II
    CHAPTER IX OF POPE JOHN'S COUNCIL

    Michael Davies Books

    COMMUNION IN THE HAND
    AND SIMILAR FRAUDS
    A SHORT HISTORY OF THE ROMAN MASS
    THE CATHOLIC SANCTUARY AND THE SECOND VATICAN COUNCIL
    LITURGICAL SHIPWRECK
    THE BARBARIANS HAVE TAKEN OVER
    THE LITURGICAL REVOLUTION
    CRANMER'S GODLY ORDER: HEAVILY EXCERPTED
    THE ORDER OF MELCHISIDECH, SECOND EDITION

    An Article with Excerpts from Hamish Fraser:

    THE SCANDAL OF THE AMERICAN MISSAL

    Other:

    The Talmudic Touch:
    THE REAL STORY OF THE OFFERTORY'S REPLACEMENT
    by Craig Heimbichner

    VIEW AN IMAGE OF PART OF THE TRADITINAL ORDINATON RITE

    THE TRADITIONAL ROMAN MASS IN PICTURES
    Citations and Documents:

    MEMORIALE DOMNI: Instruction on the Manner of Administering Holy Communion

    THE BULL, QUO PRMUM by Pope St. Pius V

    IS QUO PRIMUM MERELY DISCIPLINARY?
    by Fr. Paul Kramer, B.Ph., S.T.B., M.Div.,
    S.T.L. [Can.]


    A FEW BRIEF CITATIONS ABOUT THE HOLY ROMAN MASS

    THE VALUE OF THE MASS  with Added St. Gertrude Revelation
    and FLOS CARMEL PRAYER
    THE VALUE OF THE MASS  with  PRAYERS

    A BRIEF DICTIONARY OF LITURGICAL AND RELATED TERMS
    A BRIEF COMPARISON OF THE NOVUS ORDO MASS
    AND THE TRADITIONAL ROMAN MASS
    by Pauly Fongemie

    THE HOLY MASS: AN EXPLANATION OF THE REQUISITES, VESTMENTS, VESSELS
    AND OTHER ARTICLES FOR THE ALTAR AND SANCTUARY


    METHOD OF HEARING MASS SPIRITUALLY FOR THE ABSENT

    THE OTTAVIANI INTERVENTION

    THE BULL, APOSTOLICAE CURAE by Pope Leo XIII

    THE CATHOLIC FAITH

    TRADITION PAGE

    WHY THE TRADITIONAL MASS?

    CROSS


    EXTERNAL LINK: THE HOLY MASS EXPLAINED, TEXT ONLY
    BY NICHOLAS GIHR, 1902

    Explanation of the Ceremonies of Holy Mass

    Explanation of the Ceremonies of Holy Mass, Part I: Before Holy Mass

    Sunday is the LORD’s Day. Christians rise with the sun on the eighth day, the first new day of a new age of the Resurrection, and go to buildings which have been set apart for divine worship by the name church. They are called church because it is the Mystical Body of Christ, the Church, which assembles there in the presence of God just as the twelve tribes of Israel assembled at the foot of Mt Sinai to receive the Law and came to the temple in Jerusalem to offer sacrifices to ask God to forgive their sins. Christians come to celebrate the sacrament of the Eucharist, a word which means thanksgiving, in the context of a liturgy filled with rites and ceremonies called the Mass.

    Every baptized Christian becomes a member of the Church when water and the Holy Spirit are poured over him at baptism. And so the Christian enters the church building just as he entered the Church through baptism, taking holy water as a reminder of his baptism and tracing upon himself the Sign of the Cross which brought about his insertion into the life of the triune God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit whose Name he invokes.

    The Christian finds a space in an assembly where there are no divisions between rich and poor, races or social class. When he crosses the threshold of the church from the outside world into the church, he leaves behind all earthly cares to enter into a foretaste of the Heavenly Jerusalem, the place where heaven meets earth at this Mystical Banquet. Jesus Christ reigns in the church as surely as He reigns in heavens, from his throne in the tabernacle, where He waits for us to come and worship and adore Him. We enter the church and gaze at Christ who waits for us in the tabernacle and we touch the right knee to the ground in a simple act of adoration to Him who is worshipped by the angels and saints and by men. At the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow. We prepare for Mass by kneeling, a symbol of our own submission to the will of God. We make prayers of adoration, contrition, thanksgiving and supplication. We silently prepare ourselves for the re-enactment of the drama of Calvary, to receive the fruits of the one sacrifice offered to the Father for the salvation of men.

    The priest, a man ordained to offer sacrifice for the living and the dead, has no other reason to exist than to make present in the here and now the same sacrifice that the LORD accomplished on the Cross, and to give to us the fruits of that sacrifice. Every day he offers the Mass, so that at every moment somewhere in the world there is the one sacrifice of redemption is celebrated in ritual forms and under symbolic guise, from the rising of the sun to its setting, and throughout the watches of the night.

    The priest enters the sacristy clad in his black cassock, a sign of his renunciation of the world and of penance for his sins. He washes his hands and prays,

    CLEANSE my hands, O Lord, from all stain, that, pure in mind and body, I may be worthy to serve Thee.

    Just as the priests of the Old Testament purified the hands that would offer sacrifices of animals and plants, the priest of the New and Eternal Covenant washes his hands as a symbol of a prayer that he may be worthy to offer the last sacrifice for the People of God. The priest then puts on vestments reminiscent of those worn by the priests of the temple and the doctors of the law. Adore the LORD in holy attire, the Psalmist says, and the priest, putting on these special clothes, reminds himself that what he is doing is no ordinary, everyday action, but the Act by which Jesus redeems and saves us. He makes the Sign of the Cross and picks up the amice, a linen cloth held by strings evoking the prayer shawls of Jewish men, and prays, PLACE, O Lord, the helmet of Salvation upon my head to repel the assaults of the Devil.

    Satan hates the Mass, because by that sacrifice commemorated here his reign over the hearts of men was destroyed, and so he seeks to distract the priest from his noble task and draw him into hell with the damned. Undaunted, the priest picks up the alb, a white garment stretching to the feet which reminds him of the pure white robe given to him at baptism as a symbol of his restored innocence. The word alb comes from the Latin word alba, which means white. When St John had his vision of the end of the world, he saw a multitude which no man could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, Salvation belongs to our God who sits upon the throne and to the Lamb![1] The priest standing in the place of the people, appears before them a sign of the blessed in heaven praising the Lamb slain for them in this sacrifice, and prays,

    CLEANSE me, O Lord, and purify my heart, that, being made white in the Blood of the Lamb, I may attain everlasting joy.

    The priest then puts the cincture around his waist,

    GIRD me, O Lord, with the girdle of purity and quench in me the fire of concupiscence, that the grace of temperance and chastity may abide in me.

    He is reminded that he is a sinful man, prone to the lusts of the flesh as any man, but called to a life of angelic chastity for the love of souls. As Jesus said to the Apostle Peter, he says now to the priest, When you were young, you girded yourself and walked where you would, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish to go.[2] Christ reminds the priest that he is promised to an obedience which transcends his own desires, a sacrifice willingly undertaken for love of souls. In ancient times, the priest put on his left arm a maniple, a handkerchief to wipe his sweaty brow during the Mass, and he prayed,

    GRANT me, O Lord, to bear the light burden of grief and sorrow, that I may with gladness take the reward of my labor.

    The priest’s life is one of hard work and solitude, so he asks for the strength to live the life Christ has asked him to live. GIVE me again, O Lord, the stole of immortality, which I lost by the transgression of my first parents, and although I am unworthy to come unto Thy Holy Sacrament, grant that I may attain everlasting felicity. This man of obedience, this man of sorrows, kisses and places round his neck a stole, a long, narrow piece of cloth. Roman government officials wore stoles as signs of their authority, and the priest, who has the authority from God to teach, sanctify and govern, wears this ancient emblem of office whenever he celebrates a sacrament. But more important than authority, however legitimate, is love, and so the priest covers the stole and everything else with the chasuble, from the Latin word casula, or little house, signifying that charity is to cover all else in the priest’s life. He prays, LORD, who hast said, My yoke is easy, and My burden is light, grant that I may so bear it, as to attain Thy grace. Amen. The priest may then put on his headcovering, the biretta. Having its origin in the Middle Ages as a scholar’s cover, the priest must be learned in the sacred sciences, so it is appropriate that he wear the sign of that learning in church.

    The priest spends time in silent preparation for what he is about to do. When the time has come, he bows to the Cross in the sacristy, as just as the Word made Flesh came forth from the body of the Virgin into the world, the Word’s herald comes vested in the ancient garments of tradition from the womb of the sacristy into the Church, the Body of Christ given for the life of the world. He rings a bell as a sign that the drama of Calvary is about to begin, and everyone is ready to witness its power and glory.


    [1] Revelation 7.9-10
    [2] John 21.18

    Explanation of the Ceremonies of Holy Mass Part 2: I will go to the Altar of God

    Today there is an option to sing man-made hymns chosen by the priest or a parish staff member during Mass. But the Church has always appointed texts from the Psalms to accompany ritual actions at Mass. The Introit, or Entrance Antiphon, is taken from the Psalms and other scriptural texts to proclaim the theme of this particular celebration of the mysteries of divine life. The Church has never believed in singing at the Mass or praying at the Mass; the Church sings and prays the Mass. At the beginning of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the sacred ministers and those who serve them make their way in a dignified procession to the altar. A thurifer leads the procession with a smoking vessel of incense called a thurible. The smoke of the incense symbolizes our prayers rising to God and has since antiquity been a sign of homage to holy people and holy things.
     
    Another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden censer, and he was given much incense to mingle with the prayers of the saints upon the golden altar before the throne; and the smoke of the incense rose with the prayers of the saints from the hand of the angel before God. Then the angel took the censer and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth.[1]

    Behind the thurifer comes the crucifer, who holds aloft before our eyes the image of Christ who came to save us. Just as the Israelites wandering through the desert looked upon the image of a bronze serpent and were healed of their illnesses, Christians gaze upon the likeness of the Crucified and are stirred to devotion, to reverence and to prayer. The crucifer is accompanied by two candlebearers, who carry lights that symbolize Christ, the light of the world who pierces the darkness of sin and death, lights given from candles blessed on the Feast of the Presentation of the Infant Jesus in the temple on 2 February, made from the wax of bees who work diligently like Christians at their appointed task. Other servers, representatives of the faithful at the Sacrifice, process as so many saints to the Throne of Grace. A deacon, the servant of the priest and the Church, clad like the priest except for his dalmatic of joy and gladness, enters, holding before him the beautifully bound Book of the Gospels to place upon the altar. The priest enters the church as Jesus rides into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, amidst great joy and Hosannas, always mindful of the awe-inspiring events which will take place in this holy place.

     The priest arrives at the foot of the altar. In ancient times, he did not enter the Holy of Holies, the sanctuary of the Church, until he had taken off his biretta as a sign of submission to God and genuflected to Christ in the Blessed Sacrament reserved in the sanctuary. He would recite with the ministers the words of Psalm 42, I will go to the altar of God, to God the joy of my youth and then recite a formula for the confession of his sins.

    The priest then, right foot first, enters the inner precinct of the sanctuary. In the temple of Jerusalem, only the High Priest could enter the inner sanctum once a year, and say the name of God. Now the minister of the Eternal High Priest, Jesus Christ, enters into the holy place another Christ, so that God may become present amongst men and dwell within their hearts.

    In the sanctuary there is a table. This is no ordinary table for an ordinary meal; it is an altar of sacrifice and the table of Passover. The Jewish ritual of the Passover meal and the sacrifices in the temple of Jerusalem find their fulfillment on the altar of the wood of the Cross on which was sacrificed the Lamb of God. The altar of the Mystical Sacrifice of the Mass is of wood or of marble, but it represents Christ in His tomb.

    The altar is covered with three fair linen cloths, which symbolize the winding sheets in which Christ was placed in the tomb. Christians from earliest times celebrated Mass in altars raised over the remains of those who gave their lives as witnesses to the faith, sacrificing their lives because of their belief in the sacrifice of Christ. Today the Church places relics, physical remains of or objects belonging to the saints, to remind us of the connection between the sacrifice of the Eucharist and the sacrifice of those who are nourished by the Eucharist.

    Behind the altar is always to be found an image of the Crucified Christ. This image is a powerful reminder of the unity between the sacrifice of Calvary and the sacrifice of the Mass. When Christ died on the Cross, he faced outward to the West. Since the beginning of the Church, Christians have prayed facing east, facing Christ who died gazing at them and whom tradition holds will come again at the end of time, from the east. The universal custom of the Church has always been for priest and people to face, if not directional East, at least liturgical East, at Mass, indicated by the image of the Crucified. Only two exceptions are known: in Rome, the ancient basilicas were built westward facing, so the priest stood behind the altar people actually turned their backs to the altar to face East during the consecration of the Mass; and now, in many places in the West, where Mass is celebrated facing the people so they may see the rites on the altar. The eastward position is not so that the priest can have his back to the people; on the contrary, it is so that priest and people may be together on the same side of the altar, worshipping the LORD together and awaiting His Second Coming.

    In the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, also referred to as the Old Latin Mass, the priest prayed as he approached the altar,

    Take away from us our iniquities, we implore Thee, Lord, that with pure minds we may worthily enter into the holy of holies: through Christ our Lord. Amen.

    Now as then, he kisses the Altar, the symbol of Christ. In the Extraordinary Form he prays,

    We implore You, Lord, by the merits of all Thy Saints, whose relics are here, and of all the Saints, that thou wouldst deign to forgive me all my sins. Amen.

    The Mass is not just a celebration for the men and women physically present in the church; it is a celebration of the entire celestial court, and the priest calls on the saints to assist him in his ministry to the People of God. He kisses the altar to make reparation for the traitorous kiss of Christ. He kisses the altar to remind us all of the intimate relationship between God and the soul professed by the Beloved in the Song of Songs, Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth. The Mass is more than an act of worship; it is that intimate kiss of love between Christ and His Bride, the Church, a kiss by which new life is generated and death overcome by the Resurrection.

    In the Extraordinary Form, the priest-celebrant assists at most of the Mass from his position at the altar. Only a Bishop would preside from a throne set off to the side. In the Ordinary Form, after the priest or bishop reverences the altar he goes to a special chair off to the side. Chairs in the ancient world were a symbol of authority. When Jesus explained the scriptures in the synagogue where the Jews gathered to study the Word, he sat and taught from a chair. A bishop’s church is called a cathedral because the Bishop teaches sitting in a large throne-like, called a cathedra in Latin. Today, priests have smaller and less ornate chairs than Bishops, but the principle is the same: the one who is seated has authority to teach.



    [1] Revelation 8.3-5

    Explanation of the Ceremonies of Holy Mass, Part 3

    The priest starts out the Mass with the sign of our salvation as we all make the Sign of the Cross over our bodies as he sings, In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. The Mass is a Trinitarian act of worship to the Father, through the Son and in the Holy Spirit. Many of the prayers of the Mass are addressed to the Father, through the Son and in the Holy Spirit for this reason. The priest than turns to the faithful and addresses them, The Lord be with you. This invocation occurs several times in the Mass. It is taken from the Book of Ruth, where the pious farmer Boaz greets his wheat reapers with those words before he takes the foreigner Ruth as his wife. Boaz is a type of Christ, who gives the LORD to the Church, His Spouse. We respond and with your spirit, as we realize that the priest is performing a work of the Spirit, and by these simple words pray that the priest who offers the sacrifice may be in the Spirit, to fulfill his office as priest worthily and well.

    Priest and people recite together the Confiteor, a prayer asking for the intercession of Mary and the saints in our request that God may forgive our sins. This prayer, borne aloft by sorrow for our sins, suffices to wipe away venial sin and orient us to receive the graces that come from the Mass. We then sing the Kyrie, the ninefold invocation of Father, Son and Spirit for mercy which is often reduced in the Ordinary Form to six fold. The Kyrie is the remnant of a longer litany which disappeared from the Roman liturgy very early on and was restored, in Greek, in the Latin liturgy in the sixth century because of its antiquity. On Sundays and feasts the celebrant intones the first words of the Gloria just as they were announced by the one angel at Bethlehem to the shepherds before a chorus of angels took up the song of praise. This ancient hymn was put into the Mass around the year 160. This hymn ends, as end so many prayers and hymns, with the Hebrew word Amen. This little word, which is the automatic end of our prayers, means so many things: so it is, let it be done, I believe. It is a statement of belief, a profession of hope, and an exclamation of trust in God.

    The priest then prays the first of three prayers which change according to the day. This prayer is traditionally called the Collect, because by it the Church collects together various strands of thought in a short prayer, usually to the Father, sometimes directly to Christ, but always invoking the entire Trinity. The priest performs a gesture called the Orans position, from the Latin word for praying. He stretches out his hands in supplication before God, to show that his prayer is directed to God on behalf of His people. The priest raises his hands before God like the poor man begging alms from a rich man, the priest praying on behalf of poor sinners to the source of all riches, Christ. Whenever he mentions the Holy Name of Jesus, everyone in the congregation bows their head reverently at the Name before which the demons flee.

    The Liturgy of the Word



    Jews gathered in places called synagogues to study the Word of God. At the center of the synagogue is the Ark in which the scrolls of the Law were kept and from which they were joyfully removed to be studied. In front of the Ark is the bema, a raised platform with a reading desk on which the Word is read and from which the teachers of the Law expounded on its meaning. Christians gather in their churches to study the same Hebrew Scriptures as well as the writings of the Evangelists and Apostles which are also the Word of God. At the center of the church is the Tabernacle in which the Word made Flesh dwells and from which the Blessed Sacrament is joyfully removed to nourish the faithful. Because Christ is truly present in the Eucharist under the forms of bread and wine, the written word, although it is treated with great reverence, takes second place. The bema of the church is called a pulpit or ambo, and on it is placed the Lectionary from which the appointed readings for the day are proclaimed.

    In the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, the first readings were proclaimed facing the altar. Because those were the readings which pre-dated Christ, they were like the preaching of John the Baptist which pointed to Christ, hence they were proclaimed towards the altar which is the symbol of Christ. In the Ordinary Form those readings are proclaimed towards the people, as a sign of God speaking to the people through them.

    Between the Epistle and Gospel in the Old Rite and between the Old Testament and New Testament readings in the New Rite, the Gradual is sung. The gradual comes from the Latin word for steps; it is a psalm, and just as the Jews sang psalms as they ascended the steps of the temple in Jerusalem, Christian cantors sang the psalms from the steps of the altar. Often today the Gradual is replaced by a responsorial version of the psalm.

    Before the Gospel, the Church places on the lips of her people another Hebrew word, Alleluia. The Church has always sought to praise her LORD with the same word that Christ praised His Father, in the same tongue, a word which merely means, Praise the LORD! The proper Gregorian chant Alleluias will often have a large number of notes on one syllable, symbolizing the effusion of joy of the Spirit in praising the Father, pointing out the yearning for union with Him. On penitential days, the mournful Tract or the simple Gospel Acclamation replaces the Alleluia. During the Alleluia or Tract, the deacon asks for the blessing of the priest to proclaim the Good News worthily and well. He goes to the altar upon which at the beginning of the Mass he placed the Book of the Gospels. In Revelation, we read I saw in the right hand of him who was seated on the throne a book written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals. As the altar is the symbol of the throne of Christ, the deacon takes the Book of Life from Christ Himself to announce the word of salvation to men in the Gospel. He says, The LORD be with you, but he does not open his hands in the Orans position as the priest does, not usurping the priestly gesture of raised hands. He then reads the name of the Gospel writer as the faithful make the sign of the Cross on their forehead, mouth, and chest, praying that the Gospel will be in their minds, on their lips and in their hearts. In the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, the Gospel is chanted facing north, against the cold and dark regions of the earth that symbolize the malice of the Evil One. The Gospel is audaciously sung in the face of evil itself. Now it is usually read towards the people, that the evil in their hearts may be driven out by the words of the Saviour.

    Faith is a gift from God; the priest, who stands in the person of the object of faith, Jesus Christ, intones the first word, Credo, I believe, to show that faith is a gift from God that demands a response, a response given by the faithful taking up the words of a profession of faith drawn up at two ecumenical councils of the Church at Nicea and Constantinople, in the fourth century. When Henry, the Holy Roman Emperor, went to Rome in the eleventh century, he was scandalized to find that they did not sing the Creed like they did everywhere else in both West and East, at Mass. The Pope told him that the Church at Rome had no need to profess her faith because she had never needed to be corrected from error like so many other places, but shortly thereafter the Pope ordered that the Creed be sung on Sundays just to make sure that no one would ever claim they didn’t know the central truths of the faith even if they came to Mass. In the middle of the Creed are the words, and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary and became man. To symbolize the condescension by which Christ came down to earth in the Incarnation, the ministers and the faithful bow profoundly during these words, except on Christmas and the Annunciation, when they kneel.

    At the end of the Creed, General Intercessions, prayers for the state of the Church and the world, may be prayed.

    Explanation of the Ceremonies of Holy Mass Part 4: Offertory and Eucharistic Prayer



    The altar must be prepared for the sacrifice. The Missal, the book out of which the priest signs the prayers, is placed on the altar along with the sacred vessels, all made from precious metals. The chalice in which the LORD’s Precious Blood will become present is placed on the altar under a veil. There are many veils in the church, and all of them have the same symbolism. A veil partially or completely covers something, pointing to the fact that what is beneath it is a mystery not entirely accessible to man. Thus, much of what has to do with the sacrifice is veiled. The chalice is veiled. The tabernacle where the Blessed Sacrament is veiled, like the tabernacle of old. Inside the tabernacle are to be found veils, which symbolise the veil separating the Holy of Holies from the rest of the temple. The ciborium which contains the Sacred Host has a veil on it after the hosts inside are consecrated.

    Saint Paul in even instructs women to veil their heads when they pray: any woman who prays or prophesies with her head unveiled dishonours her head . . . a woman ought to have a veil over her head because of the angels . . . if anyone is disposed to be contentious, we recognize no other practice, nor do the churches of God.

    The altar itself is often veiled with an antependium, a covering over the whole altar. In the Middle Ages a large veil called the hunger veil hid the entire sanctuary from the people at Mass during Lent, to highlight the separation of man from God by sin. In the East, an iconostasis, a large wall covered with holy images, blocks the view of the people so that they may not gaze on the mysteries and have contempt for them. In the West, rood screens and grilles are often seen in churches to underscore that God and the things of God are sacred, removed from the profane, wholly other. The language of Latin also serves as a veil; the words which are used in sacred worship are different than ordinary words, consecrated for divine use to emphasize that the actions that are taking place now are truly from another world.

    In ancient times, the faithful often made the bread and wine for Mass and brought them, along with all kinds of gifts for the poor and the needy, to the altar. The deacons would distribute them from the altar while the priest went with the bread and wine to the altar. In the Ordinary Form it is common to have a procession during which monetary offerings for the good of the parish are brought up along with the bread and wine for the Eucharist. The bread is unleavened, just like the bread used by Christ at the Last Supper on Passover. The wine is ordinary wine made from grapes with nothing else added or taken away. The bread is fashioned into smaller and larger hosts. The word host comes from the Latin hostia, victim, because the bread of the host then becomes Christ who is both Priest and Victim. A larger host is placed on a paten, a large dish, and smaller hosts in ciboria.
    In the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, the subdeacon takes the paten away from the altar and stands with it wrapped in a humeral veil placed around his shoulders. During the entire Eucharistic Prayer, he stands with the paten over his face, to symbolise the cherubim who covered their faces from the Divine Presence in the Book of Ezekiel, again calling to mind the mystery of the God hidden underneath the sacramental veils of bread and wine.

    The priest and deacon prepare the chalice with wine, careful to use a purificator, a linen cloth, to wipe away drops which adhere to the sides of the chalice, A small quantity of water, no more than a drop, is added to the wine. The wine is a symbol of Christ, and is not blessed. The water symbolizes us, and is blessed before it is placed in the wine, just as by baptism in water we are blessed in Christ and then submerged into his divine life. When water is mixed with wine in the chalice, the people are united to Christ. The sacred vessels are placed on another linen cloth called a corporal, from the Latin corpus, or body, because the Body of Christ will become present in the Host which rests upon it. The chalice is covered by a rigid piece of cloth to protect it called a pall, the same word used for the covering of a coffin at a funeral Mass. Everything on the altar at this moment makes reference to the death of Christ, which the Mass commemorates. The round paten is the stone rolled over the tomb. The Chalice is the sepulcher. The purificator and pall are the winding sheets and the veil used to cover the face of Jesus in the tomb. The stage is set for the Sacrifice of Calvary to be re-enacted in an unbloody manner.

    These gifts of bread and wine, work of human hands, are now set apart from any use other than that of sacrifice. In the temple in Jerusalem, there were three sacred spaces, an altar of incense, an altar of bread and the Holy of Holies. The church melds all three sacred spaces onto the altar which is the Cross on which Christ is sacrificed and upon which bread and wine are transubstantiated into the Body and Blood of Christ. The priest imposes incense in the thurible once more. In the Extraordinary Form, he asks the blessing, not of the angel standing at the right hand of the altar in heaven in John’s dream of the Apocalypse, but of the Archangel Michael, the prince of the heavenly hosts. Just as the Cross was the battle by which Christ vanquished the Father of Lies and the Prince of Darkness, the Church invokes the blessing of him who offers us protection from the wickedness and snares of the Devil as our prayers ascend before the Father on His Celestial Throne. The priest incenses the gifts, the Cross, the altar, all in groups of three, which recalls the three comings of Mary Magdalene to anoint the LORD with aromatic spices: at the house of Simon the Pharisee, t the house of Simon the Leper, and at the empty tomb.

    The priest is then incensed, and one by one, every one in the sanctuary is also incensed in order of rank, and then the faithful assembled in the church. This hierarchical incensation is a reminder of the hierarchical nature of the Church. Just as there are nine choirs of angels, there is a hierarchy in the order of grace and in the order of nature.

    When the priest has been incensed, while the thurifer incenses others in the church, filling it with the smoke which hearkens back to the pillar of cloud in the Book of Exodus which guided the people of Israel and the fragrance of holiness, the priest washes his hands. In ancient times, the priest frequently became dirty from handling all of the material gifts the people brought at Mass and the use of incense. Now, it is generally a ceremonial washing. But it is still important. As the priest quietly prays, Wash me, O LORD, from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin, he reminds himself that he must be entirely pure to be admitted into the presence of the LORD and that his life must be coherent with his preaching. He returns to the altar, the words of Psalm 26 accompanying his movement, I wash my hands in innocence, and go about thy altar, O LORD.

    The priest invites the people, Pray, brethren that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God, the almighty Father. The sacrifice of the priest is different from, although not unrelated, to that of the people. Only a priest can offer sacrifice; only a priest can celebrate the Mass because he is ordained by God to do so. He offers the sacrifice in the person of Christ the Head. Yet, where the head is, so too the Body, and the faithful unite the sacrifice of their praise and their lives with the action on the altar.

    After saying another prayer, the priest engages in a dialogue with the people that is present in all forms of worship from all times. He shouts out, Lift up your hearts and raises his hands from where they have been resting on the corporal in that priestly gesture of prayer. He then bows low before the Divine Majesty as he says, Let us give thanks to the LORD our God. The moment of sacrifice has arrived, the death of Christ comes upon us. But it is not a sad and tremendous occasion as it was on Calvary. We look upon the unbloody re-enanctment of this one sacrifice with great joy as the price for our redemption, paid once for all on a green hill far away, is made present in the here and now of our lives. And we rejoice as the priest prays the Preface, a prayer to recall to us the mystery of salvation, sung according to the same melodies the Greeks used to welcome their heroes home fro the Olympic Games. The priest calls upon the angels and the saints to be present on the altar before the choir representing the blessed in heaven along with the Church militant on earth and the Church suffering in purgatory all cry out, Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus.

    Holy, Holy, Holy LORD, God of hosts, heaven and earth are filled with your glory. The heavens open to unite themselves with earth and the cry of the angels in the Book of Revelation becomes ours as we proclaim the awesome majesty of God. We cannot help but cry out in the primitive language of the Church, Hosanna, save us, the Hebrew invocation to Jesus as he rode triumphantly amidst palm and olive branches into Jerusalem. The veiled vision of the glory of God inspires us to call out to Him to save us and we are reminded of that great truth, Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD, affirming that the man who has faith to come to God to ask for mercy has is truly blessed in this moment when the doors to heaven are mystically opened to the believer in the Mass.

    Part 5: The Eucharistic Prayer

    Holy Thursday meets Good Friday in the most sacred part of the Mass, the Eucharistic Prayer. This prayer of consecration changes bread and wine into Christ Himself. This is the kernel of the Mass, the actual sacrifice. Christ bent over bread and wine during a Passover meal and said, This is my Body, which is given up for you, the same body which would be given up for men the next day on the Cross .

    Christ’s actions on that first Holy Thursday night were not yet another re-enactment of the traditional Jewish Passover meal. There was something different about this meal, as evidenced by how Jesus celebrated it. Christ gives the definitive meaning to this meal only the next day, when he dies. The sacrifice of Christ, which is ordered to be commemorated by the memorial of eating bread and drinking wine which is His Body and Blood, is the fulfillment of Passover, the passing over of Christ from death to life in the Resurrection.

    What happens in the Eucharistic Prayer is no more an exact replica of the Last Supper meal than Jesus exactly replicated the Passover meal. In fact, what is called the Institution Narrative, the words that surround the consecration of the bread and wine, are not taken exactly from the scriptures at all, but is an amalgamation of scriptural texts into the form of the sacrament. The reality is that what Christ did is commemorated in a way which makes the entire Christ present, Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity, under the outward appearances of bread and wine.

    Up until the liturgical reforms after Vatican II, the entire Eucharistic Prayer was said in silence. The priest never turned to face the people, intent on contemplating the divine alone, and raised his voice only seven times from the beginning of the Offertory until Communion, reminiscent of the seven words of Jesus from the Cross. The entire church was plunged into silence, rapt in the mystery of what was happening before them. The silence is there, not to obscure the prayer, but to draw attention to the fact that Christ is doing something on our behalf which is beyond our rational comprehension, it is something to be submitted to in faith.

    The text of the first Eucharistic Prayer, or Roman Canon, was fixed already by the end of the second century. In the Ordinary Form of the Mass it is heard aloud, as are the new Eucharistic prayers introduced in 1970. During the first part of the Canon, the Church prays that the LORD will accept the gifts, offerings, unspotted sacrifices she offers to Him. She then prays for the living and remembers the apostles and martyrs before beseeching the LORD to accept this offering as a sacrifice to deliver the elect from eternal damnation.

    Then something wonderful happens. The priest then spreads his hands over the gifts of bread and wine. Just as the priests of the Old Law placed their hands on animal sacrifices to set them apart and sacrifice them to the LORD, the priests of the New Covenant do the same to the bread and wine, praying the Father that they become the Body and Blood of His Son, Jesus. This moment of the Mass is called the Epiclesis, the invocation of the Holy Spirit who will change the elements into God Himself. The graceful motion by which the priest’s hands flutter over the gifts symbolizes the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the gifts to change them.

    The priest then proceeds to the Institution Narrative, the Consecration. The bread and wine are consecrated separately just as they were at the Last Supper, using the very words of Our LORD as appear in the scriptures, although not in any one place. After each consecratory formula, the priest holds the element aloft for the faithful to see. The Body of Christ under the form of bread is showed to the faithful so that they may be stirred to devotion and hope in their salvation. As the LORD said, If I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all things to Myself, and He brings to Himself at that moment all who gaze upon Him with living faith under the sacramental veils of bread and wine. The priest replaces the Host and the Chalice on the corporal, and genuflects: he bends the knee in adoration before the Divine Majesty.

    The priest continues to pray that this sacrifice may be carried to the Father in glory and that all who participate in the sacrifice may be blessed. He remembers all the holy dead who sleep in hope of the resurrection, the souls in purgatory. Then, remembering his own sinfulness, the priest asks on behalf of the people that the LORD will remember all sinners and grant them entrance into the heavenly Kingdom. After Christ died, the centurion beat his breast and said, Truly, this is the Son of God and the priest does likewise, showing forth the humility of the sinner before the great sacrifice of Christ which he has just witnessed by touching his heart with a sign of repentance.

    The Canon ended, the sacrifice is over. At this moment the Church dare not invent a prayer as she stands beneath the Cross of Jesus. Her sins taken away by the Passion and Death of Christ just re-presented, all the Church can do is pray the words that her LORD taught her to pray: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. This LORD’s Prayer contains seven petitions, and symbolises the seventh day of the week, when Jesus rested in the tomb. The priest prays the Embolism, Deliver us, LORD, from every evil, afterwards; in the Extraordinary Form it is prayed in the silence of the sepulcher. The Church awaits the Resurrection.
     

    Explanation of the Ceremonies of Holy Mass, Part 5: Communion and Dismissal

    No one was there when Jesus rose from the dead. But he appeared on the evening of His Resurrection to two disciples walking on the Road to Emmaus. They do not recognize Him until He breaks bread with them. In the Mass, no one sees the Resurrection, even in symbol, for no symbol could ever do it justice. But the priest breaks the consecrated bread so that we may recognize the presence of the Crucified and Risen Christ in the Eucharist as surely as the disciples knew Him in the breaking of the bread. Just as the angel, removes the stone from the tomb, the deacon removes the pall from the chalice. The priest breaks the host into three parts, signifying that Christ was in three parts: His body was in the tomb, His Blood poured out upon the earth, and His soul was freeing the just from hell. The priest places one section of the three into the chalice. Jesus’ Body and Blood are reunited in the Resurrection and this commingling of Body and Blood is the eloquent and simple sign of that Resurrection.

    All the while, the choir and people sing, Agnus Dei, Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us. The priest raises the Host, the sacrificed Lamb, and exclaims in the words of John the Baptist when he sees Jesus: Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world! The people respond with some of the same words as the Centurion said to Jesus when asking Him to heal his sick child: LORD, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.

    The priest consummates the sacrifice by reverently consuming the Host and the Precious Blood, couching that moment of union with his God by preparation and thanksgiving. The sacrifice has been made and consummated. Now the fruits of that sacrifice can be shared with those who have participated in that sacrifice, who have been witnesses to it in faith. The fruits of the sacrifice of redemption are shared in the sacrament of Holy Communion. Baptized faithful who have been taught the faith and are in communion with the Church can approach the altar to commune, become one, with God, through this great sacrament.

    The faithful who have mystically participated in the teaching and ministry of Christ in the Liturgy of the Word, in his Passion and Death in the Liturgy of the Eucharist, in his Resurrection through their prayerful and reverent preparation for Communion, now come forward to consummate their union with Christ in the sacrament of Holy Communion. While all of the rites and ceremonies of the Church are now open to all, while all may gaze upon them and participate in them, Holy Communion is not for every one. The Church has always had a strict discipline for who is to be admitted to Holy Communion. Saint Paul admonishes believers, Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the LORD in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning he body and blood of the LORD. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself.

    Sacramental communion with God presupposes two things: union with Christ through grace and union with Christ’s Body through the Church. Only baptized and practicing Catholics who are not in the state of mortal sin may approach Communion, and then only if they have been fasting for at least one hour. It is not something to be taken lightly, for it is like passing through fire – a fire which purifies some and makes them shine and which destroys others and compounds their misery.
    Just as the priest is consecrated from among men to offer the sacrifice, he is also deputed to administer the sacrament. At ordination his hands are anointed with sacred chrism to set them apart for blessing, consecrating, and administering the mysteries of God. He is the ordinary minister of the Eucharist, and others administer Holy Communion only when licensed by the Bishop to do so in cases where priests are lacking for Communion to be distributed in a timely and reverent manner.
    The preferred method for receiving the Host is directly on the tongue. Just as birds open wide their mouths to receive from their mothers all they need to sustain life, the faithful reverently open their mouths and receive the Bread of Life from Christ. For much of history, Christians in the West have received Communion kneeling, that profound symbol of humility and adoration. Where Communion is received standing or in the hand, by the Church’s permission but not by her preference or tradition, care must be taken that no one approaching the sacrament does so out of a sense of right or that it is due to them. We should always approach the altar not like the Pharisee, proudly standing, assured of our own righteousness, but meekly kneeling, beating our breast like the publican, LORD, have mercy on me, a sinner.

    When the distribution of Holy Communion is finished, the priest consolidates what is left of the consecrated bread and places it in the tabernacle of the church, that receptacle which recalls the Ark of the Covenant where God’s presence dwelt with the Israelites and in which the Bread of Heaven is kept so that we may visit and adore the LORD’s wondrous presence. The vessels are carefully purified so that not even the slightest particle or drop may remain. The altar is despoiled of the Missal and the sacred vessels, prepared for another celebration of the Divine Sacrifice.

    We have seen the true light! We have received the heavenly Spirit! We have found the true Faith! Worshipping the undivided Trinity, who has saved us. The Eastern rites sing this hymn after Holy Communion. Our true faith and worship have brought us to celebrate the mysteries of Christ in the worship of the Trinity. The priest sings a final prayer and then calls down God’s blessing upon us once again through the sign of the life-giving Cross. Recalling the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and Mary at Pentecost, the priest in the person of Christ blesses the faithful disciples in the church gathered at the sacred assembly. They have had the Holy Spirit poured out upon them at Holy Mass so that they can go forth from the church into the world, united to Christ by grace to share what they have witnessed and experienced. The deacon sings, The Mass is ended, go in peace, sending forth the baptized faithful into their mission territory, the world. All sing back to him, Thanks be to God, in one simple phrase summing up the nature of the Eucharistic celebration itself: giving thanks to God for His Sacrifice and for giving us the fruits of His Sacrifice in Holy Mass.

    The priest gives a final kiss of gratitude to the altar and genuflects before the Holy Presence before he and his ministers return to the sacristy. Going out of the people’s sight, he enters the place where he vested, just as then Christ ascended into heaven, the clouds took him from the sight of those who gazed upon Him. And tomorrow, the whole drama of the LORD’s sacrifice will be repeated once more and God will be glorified as he has been adored through the Mass at every moment every day until the last priest says the last Mass and the LORD comes to proclaim a new heaven and a new earth.
     
    http://www.chantcafe.com/2010/08/explanation-of-ceremonies-of-holy-mass_02.html#more

    THE MASS AND THE MYSTICAL BODY

    THE MASS AND THE MYSTICAL BODY

    By Father Paul A. Duffner, O.P.

    We can better understand our union with Christ, and especially our union with Him in the sacrifice of the Mass, if we have some idea of the Mystical Body of which Christ is the head and we the members. As the members of our own body constitute a living organism in the natural order - all physically united; so the head and members of the Mystical Body constitute a living organism in the supernatural order, all united through grace.
    St. Augustine speaks of the Mystical Body of Christ as the “whole Christ.” Not that the individual physical Body of Christ was in any way incomplete; but He became man precisely to become one with us, not merely taking on our human nature, but sharing with us His divine nature in such a way that we, as members of His Body, share in the fruits of all that He did.
    This oneness with Christ in the Mass is not just a figurative or symbolic expression. It is a reality, since - through grace - we share in His divine life, His knowledge, His love, according to the degree of our growth in grace and charity; for only in that measure is the soul open to the influence of the Holy Spirit. To express this in another way, the spiritual effects of the Eucharist are obtained in the measure that we are free from the attachment to venial sins; for as St. Thomas explains: “The fire of our desire or love is hindered by venial sins, which hinder the fervor of charity. . . . Therefore, venial sins hinder the effects of this sacrament. . . (Yet venial sins) do not completely hinder the effect of this sacrament, but merely in part” (III, 79,8).
    When we receive our Blessed Lord in Holy Communion, we are united with Him in a twofold way: through the substantial presence of His Body and Blood under the species of bread and wine - which is only temporary; and through the deeper and more intimate and lasting oneness with Him through the grace infused into the soul in the reception of this sacrament. This latter union is by far the more important, for, as we saw, it is an increased sharing in the very life, and love, and truth that Jesus is. Thus we are united with Jesus at Mass, both in offering the sacrifice, and receiving the sacrament. And, as we saw in a recent issue, the more we give of ourself in union with Christ in the sacrifice, the more the Lord gives of Himself in the sacrament.
    As long as we are in the state of grace, Christ lives His divine life in us, we in Him, and He in us. “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood, abides in Me and I in him” (Jn. 6:57). We abide in Him as members of His Mystical Body, and He abides in us through grace. When we cooperate with His graces and inspirations He lives His divine life in us as the primary cause of our good acts; we are but the secondary cause, cooperating with the graces received. We can, of course, fail to cooperate with His graces preferring our will to His.

    THROUGH HIM, WITH HIM, IN HIM

    How do we offer adoration and reparation, thanksgiving and praise to the Father during the Mass? The words of the Mass at the end of the Eucharistic Prayer give us the answer. We make this offering “through Him, with Him and in Him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit,” so that “all glory and honor is Yours, almighty Father, for ever and ever.” It is through Christ, our Mediator with the Father, with Him, as co-offerers of this sacrifice, and in Him as members of His Body that we offer the mass; and this is done through the action of the Holy Spirit, sent by the Father and the Son to continue and bring to completion the work that Christ began. Our Blessed Lord not only paid the price of our redemption, but merited for us every grace the Holy Spirit brings to us. Our offering in the Mass is pleasing to the Father more than we can ever know, for it is offered to the Father by His only-begotten Son, in union with His own total oblation. That is why prayers and petitions to the Father during the Mass are especially fruitful.
    Every good act of ours, then, is not ours alone; it is primarily the action of Christ in us. Our main contribution is that we have not let our selfishness stand in the way. Awareness of that should protect us from pride, from attributing solely to our own talents and strength the good that we do, or rather the good that Christ does in us with our cooperation. This is true of every supernatural act of faith, hope, love, contrition, thanksgiving, chastity, fortitude, etc.
    While the sacrament of Baptism brings to all the faithful a share in the priesthood of Christ, giving them a special capacity of participating in the sacrifice of Christ through the Mass; only to those who have received the sacrament of Holy Orders has been given the power to act in the person of Christ, calling down the action of the Holy Spirit to change the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ. Through that sacrament Christ, the High Priest, empowers the ordained priest to offer the sacrifice of the Mass in His name for the whole Church; while the faithful, along with the invisible High Priest, participate in the offering “through Him, with Him and in Him.”
    FONTE

    sexta-feira, 27 de setembro de 2013

    MARY: The closer you are to me, the more I can help you. I offer to the nations this breath of peace. Call upon me. Gather publicly. Invoke me as the Woman Clothed With the Sun. Wherever there is violence, hatred and strife, I will breathe peace. Let the family call upon me, with constant, daily faith, and I will breathe peace upon the home.



     

     

     

     

     

     

    0. Papa Francesco ed i nuovi tesori
    1. La proposta di un attacco missilistico
    2. Economia globale
    3. Tre Forze oscure
    4. Le nuove forze delle Tenebre
    5. La tenebra dei leader mondiali
    6. Il soffio di Pace di Maria
    7. Pace per le Nazioni
    8. Gli oscuri segreti dei ricchi
    9. Guerra e pace

    9. War and Peace

     Sep 24th, 2013



    Mary
    Do not judge by surface events. You must see more deeply. All of human history is played out on the world stage. Every human being plays a part which they freely choose – a role of good or evil.
    Heaven and hell are the real forces, attracting each person to make decisions. When the person has finished their days in human history, they will have decided to live in heaven or in hell. It is the world after death, after their time on the world stage, that is really important for each human person.
    Each person lives in a different age. When the age is peaceful and the culture is filled with faith, then many go to heaven. When the age is filled with war and the culture abandons heaven, then many go to hell. That is the main issue. The importance of world peace is that many are saved. The great price of war and violence is that many are lost.



    8. The Dark Secrets of the Rich

     Sep 23rd, 2013



    Mary
    The world contains many dark secrets – pacts and understandings between powerful people. These evil designs come from the rich who would control the world by their mutual cooperation. All of these evils are hidden, unknown and done in secret.
    The world is in bondage to the rich and the powerful. These people owe their status to Satan, who enslaves them by their greed and ambition. He tightens the noose around the world’s systems, hiding his plans even from the rich and powerful whom he uses so cleverly. They, too, will be caught in his trap.
    The moment comes ever closer. He waits until the whole world is in his hands. Then he will act and everyone will be enslaved.
    I am the Woman Clothed With the Sun. I reveal these things to my children. When they see the world’s systems thrown into great confusion, they will trust in me. Begin now. The closer you are to me, the more I can help you. When will Russia be consecrated to my Immaculate Heart?

    8. New Entanglements
    Sep 23rd, 2013



    Jesus
    It seems as if the Syrian crisis has been avoided. However, that is only what meets the eye. Instead, President Obama has taken some fatal steps of new entanglements. He aligns himself now with Putin and Assad. When he needed them in the crisis, they saw their opportunity to shift their relationship with America while giving up very little – really nothing.
    Iran is the big winner. President Obama has drawn close to and is in debt to Iran’s allies, Russia and Syria. Iran is included in this agreement, even though its name is not mentioned. Later, the full ramifications of these secret agreements will entrap President Obama and America.
    Syria is not the focal point of Stan’s destruction but the long-lasting war is preparing for and leading up to his explosion. When will the Holy Father consecrate Russia so the forces of peace will be unleashed?




    7. Peace for the Nations

    Sep 22nd, 2013



    Mary
    The forces of violence are everywhere, always looking for the best opportunity to inflict the greatest suffering at the least possible price. The West spends its money in trying to safeguard its people but so many places lie unprotected. “Where will the next attack come?” That is always the question. Can you not fight back? Can you not push away this evil force? Not with your own powers (how powerless you are!) but I offer to the nations this breath of peace.
    If I put forth this promise decades ago, many nations would quickly respond. Now, the faith has grown dim and the light of hope is almost extinguished. I must act quickly. Let the words lift up your hearts. Call upon me. Gather publicly. Invoke me as the Woman Clothed With the Sun. Wherever there is violence, hatred and strife, I will breathe peace. Many people will hope again. These will be the beginning steps. I must wait for you to act.



    6. Mary’s Breath of Peace

    Print This Post Print This Post



    Mary
    The world is so engrossed in evil that the heavenly Father has no choice. He must purify the world. However, how will this come? With my help, the purification can be quick and effective. Without my help, the purification will be a terrible chastisement.
    I speak now of a  surprising breath of peace. Let us leave aside, for a moment, the enormous darkness that lay hidden in the ocean. Let us look around the world for places where I can breathe a new air of peace.
    I turn my eyes to the Philippines where people always look to me. I see the struggle that they have had for many decades to defend their lands. If they raise their voices to me day and night, even beyond their present devotions, I will breathe peace upon them.
    I also see the violence in the little towns and villages of Latin America. Here, too, people hold me dear. I promise that if any town or village cries out to me day and night, I will breathe peace.
    I also see the homes in all the world where peace is endangered. Let the family call upon me, with constant, daily faith, and I will breathe peace upon the home. And you, O reader, are there not parts of your life where no peace exists? Cry out to me and I will breathe peace.
    This peace is not the great peace that I promise when the pope consecrates Russia to my Immaculate Heart. However, I cannot wait. I must give my breath of peace now.




    5. The Darkness of World Leaders

    Sep 20th, 2013



    Mary
    The greatest darkness is those who currently guide the world. Look at the world leaders. Is there even one who would lead the world according to heaven’s light? Begin with the Muslim brotherhood and the terrorist groups. Will they lead the world to peace? Look at Russia. They are supplying arms to terrorist nations. Look at the European leadership. Their union has renounced its Christian foundations and thrown off heaven’s protection. Look at America. Can a nation that refuses to protect its unborn keep the whole world safe?
    World leaders are the great darkness. Centuries ago, there was a Christian West that allowed the pope’s voice to be heard. Now, his voice is silenced, quoted only when it serves their purposes.
    Do you not see my plan? I would exalt the papacy. I would make it the greatest force in world peace. The three Fatima children believed my words. I promised them a sign and vindicated their faith by the dance of the sun. Have I not promised the conversion of Russia followed by a great period of peace if the pope consecrates Russia to my Immaculate Heart? Is this consecration not to be done openly, in full faith for all the world to see? Would I then do nothing? I want to exalt the papacy, not make it a laughing stock. Remember, I am the Woman Clothed With the Sun. I will act on the world stage but I wait to be asked.




    4. The New Forces of Darkness

     Sep 19th, 2013



    Mary
    What are these dark forces that lie hidden in the ocean of human life? Why do they exist and how did they get there? They are new forces, never before present in human history. They come from all the inventions and the new technology. These powerful forces have fallen into the wrong hands. There are many scientists and other intelligent people who work for Satan (even when they are unaware of that). They are his instruments, unlocking God’s secrets placed in creation, but then using them for selfish goals.
    After these technologies are developed, they are used with no reference to heaven’s lights. The world is like children attracted by butterflies, wandering off of God’s paths and led into unthinkable dangers. This is the current state of mankind.
    I must repeat the message. “Only heaven can rescue you. Turn back to the devotions of your Catholic faith. O reader, do not wait for the world. It will never turn back. I invite you personally to come back to me.”



    3. Three Dark Forces
    Sep 18th, 2013



    Mary
    The world today is like an ocean with many waves. These are the daily problems that constantly beat upon the shores. These difficulties come and go, reported in the news but they are quickly forgotten.
    Far greater darkness is buried deeply in this ocean. If released, these forces will change the world forever. Two are obvious – the dark forces of the global economic systems and of the great weapons that are being amassed. However, other forces also exist. Because of the global communications, large numbers of people can be stirred to violence quickly. Even more important, they can be filled with fears that will cause panic. Besides these two, I want to speak of the greatest of dangers. With global communication, leaders can be raised up by Satan who cleverly guides mankind onto false roads by decisions made over a period of time. These are fatal steps that can never be retraced.
    When good people realize what has happened, they will cry out, “Only heaven can help us”. My message today is this, “O mankind, you have already reached that point. Only heaven can help you. By these messages I say that heaven is quite ready to help you. Return to the faith of your childhood. Do not despise the little acts of devotion that turn your heart to heaven. If you do this, I will help you”.

    http://www.locutions.org/2013/09/3-three-dark-forces/