Pope: May the study of the liturgy lead to greater ecclesial unity

Liturgy 33.2: Pastoral Liturgy and Pope Francis — Liturgical ConferenceAddressing members of the Pontifical Liturgical Institute of Sant’ Anselmo on Saturday 7th May, to celebrate 60 years since the institution’s foundation, Pope Francis noted that their meeting “came about as a response to the growing need of the People of God to live and participate more intensely in the liturgical life of the Church”.
Pope Francis went on to note three dimensions that emerge clearly from the Council’s drive for the renewal of liturgical life. These are: active and fruitful participation in the liturgy; ecclesial communion animated by the celebration of the Eucharist and the Sacraments of the Church; and the impetus to the evangelising mission from the liturgical life that involves all the baptised.
Read more on the Vatican News site.
Pope Francis’ speech is here (in Italian only at the moment).
Read coverage from the Tablet.

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Holy Week 2022 + Good Friday Intercession for Ukraine

Happy Holy Week | GuidepostsThe Vatican’s liturgy office has not be issued COVID-19 guidelines for Holy Week liturgies this year, but it has invited Catholics to join in the Church’s prayers for peace.
“In view of the ongoing slowdown of the pandemic, albeit at different rates in individual countries, we do not intend to offer any further guidelines for the Holy Week celebrations,” the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments said in a note to bishops on 25th March.
In recent days the Holy Father has repeatedly invited us to pray, asking God for the gift of peace for Ukraine. In the Celebration of the Passion of the Lord on Good Friday, the liturgy invites us to raise our petitions to God for the Church and for the whole world, including for those in public office and those in tribulation. Let us now make these prayers our own for all our brothers and sisters who are experiencing the horror of war, particularly in Ukraine.
In a situation of grave public need, the diocesan Bishop may permit or order the addition of a special intention during the Solemn Intercessions. An additional intercession for Ukraine is available in English and Latin, including the Missal chants.

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Order of Blessing the Oil of Catechumens and of the Sick and of Consecrating the Chrism

Sacramental OilsThe Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales published the revised translation of the “Order of Blessing the Oil of Catechumens and of the Sick and of Consecrating the Chrism” from the Roman Pontifical, and distributed it to Bishops in February 2018, for use from Lent 2018. Texts may be found on the Liturgy Office site, including:

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Singing the Exsultet at the Easter Vigil

Easter Vigil ExsultetFor any priests, deacons or cantors who will be singing The Easter Proclamation (Exsultet) at the Easter Vigil and need a little help rehearsing, a pdf of the music is available here, and an audio file here.
(These resources have been prepared by the National Association of Pastoral Musicians in the USA.)
Please see p.382 in the Roman Missal for rubrics, including what happens if a lay cantor sings the Proclamation.
Please see the Lent, Holy Week, Easter, Pentecost section of the Seasons page for some additional resources.
The chants for Holy Week are on this page.
All the chants of The Roman Missal may be found here.

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Praying the Liturgy of the Hours

Liturgy of the Hours cycle imageThe Second Vatican Council made the Liturgy of the Hours accessible to all the baptised. The priestly people, anointed in Baptism, pray to the Father through Jesus Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit. In recent times new ways of praying the Hours have been given to us, through digital resources, especially valued in time of pandemic. This conversation between Fr Adrian Graffy, Sister Anne Spilberg and Fr Gerard Bradley provides a gentle introduction to this ancient Prayer of the Church, with its roots in the prayer of Jesus and in Jewish practice, and which has been given new life in our present times.
To access the three parts of the conversation please go to www.whatgoodnews.org

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Sunday of the Word of God 2022

The Sunday of the Word of God is marked in January each year on the 3rd Sunday of Ordinary Time.
Resources are available on the Sunday of the Word of God page of the Catholic Biblical Federation’s website.
These include a Liturgical-Pastoral resource from the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization, a note from the Congregation for Divine Worship, and suggestions for families for enthroning the Bible at home.
Pope Francis will preside over the celebration for the Sunday of the Word of God on 23rd January in St. Peter’s Basilica. During the liturgy, the Pope will confer the ministry of Lector on both lay men and women, as well as the newly established ministry of Catechist on several members of the lay faithful, both women and men. This is the first time that ministries will be conferred on women and is part of a redesigning of ministries in the Church, giving official recognition to non-ordained members.
Read more on the Vatican News site.

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Resources for Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2022

Photo of Nablus‘We Saw His Star in the East’.
Materials for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2022 have been prepared by the churches of the Middle East and are available to download in a variety of formats, including accessible.
The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is traditionally observed from the 18th to the 25th January, though some areas observe it at Pentecost.

Pope Francis has tweeted: “Like the Magi who came from the East to Bethlehem to honour the Messianic King, we Christians are also pilgrims on the way toward full unity, in the diversity of our confessions and traditions. Let us #PrayTogether and keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, our only Lord. #ChristianUnity” Continue reading

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Vatican announces motto of Jubilee Year 2025: ‘Pilgrims of Hope’

VATICAN-JUBILEE-HOLY YEARPope Francis has given his approval for the theme of the upcoming Holy Year 2025: ‘Pilgrims of Hope’. Archbishop Rino Fisichella, President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization, explained that, like any motto, it attempts to condense the meaning of the entire Jubilee journey. He notes that the chosen words – pilgrims and hope – both represent key themes of Pope Francis’ pontificate.
In the Roman Catholic tradition, a Holy Year, or Jubilee is a special year of grace. It traditionally marks a year of forgiveness of sins, a year of reconciliation between adversaries, a time of conversion and receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Themes receiving special focus include: solidarity, hope, justice, commitment to serve God with joy and in peace with our brothers and sisters. A Jubilee year is above all the year of Christ, who brings life and grace to humanity. Continue reading

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Choices of readings during the post-Christmas period

Advent Lectionary | Is There Room? Are We Ready? - Good Faith MediaThe Society of St Gregory’s “Liturgy Matters” forum has useful information about liturgies during the Christmas season, explaining the selection of readings and Psalms available in the Lectionary for the feasts of the Holy Family and the Baptism of the Lord. Clergy, readers and musicians all need to be aware of this, and all need to know which choices are made. Save this information for future years!

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Celebration of old rite: Holy See responds to questions presented by bishops

ostia calice eucaristia comunione Santa MessaIn a communication addressed to the presidents of bishops’ conferences around the world, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments has responded to a series of dubia concerning restrictions on the use of the liturgical rites that antedated the liturgical reform of the Second Vatican Council.

Eleven dubia have been raised regarding the application of the Motu proprio Traditionis custodes through which in July 2021 Pope Francis promulgated new norms regarding the use of the liturgical books in use prior to the reform enacted by the Second Vatican Council. Published today on the Congregation for Divine Worship’s web site are those dubia received from the Bishops and the Dicastery’s responsa to the most recurring questions approved by the Pope that clarify some points of the Motu proprio. Each response is accompanied by explanations. Continue reading

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