HCWEOM 26-41: Holy Communion Outside of Mass: The Long Rite

These sixteen sections give the “red and the black” for the first choice, the so-called “Long Rite.” Section 26 reads:

26. This rite is to be used chiefly when Mass is not cele­brated or when communion is not distributed at scheduled times. The purpose is that the people should be nourished by the word of God. By hearing it they learn that the marvels it proclaims reach their climax in the paschal mys­tery of which the Mass is a sacramental memorial and in which they share by communion. Nourished by God’s word, they are led on to grateful and fruitful participation in the saving mysteries.

Those who framed this rite seem to be making some assumptions. This is a communal liturgy, not for lone individuals. The Word of God is an essential element, but I find it curious a homily is not in the explicit provisions for the rite.

#27 outlines liturgical greetings led by priest, deacon, or lay person. Unspecified scripture-based greetings are given as alternatives. #28 designates a penitential rite led by a “minister,” presumably a priest only.

Here’s what the HCWEOM says about the liturgy of the Word:

29. The Liturgy of the Word now takes place as at Mass. Texts are chosen for the occasion either from the Mass of the day or from the votive Masses of the Holy Eucharist or the Precious Blood, the readings from which are in the Lectionary. A list of these passages can be found in nos. 113-153 of this Ritual. The Lectionary offers a wide range of readings which may be drawn upon for particular needs, such as the votive Mass of the Sacred Heart. See nos. 154-158 below.

There may be one or more readings, the first being followed by a psalm or some other chant or by a period of silent prayer.

The celebration of the word ends with the general interces­sions.

Note no homily and a non-psalm option after the first reading.

HCWEOM 30 describes a procession to the altar with the Sacrament in pyx or ciborium. The Lord’s Prayer is prayed by all. The sign of peace follows (31). The familiar Communion ritual and responses are described (32-34) and “A hymn may be sung” during the distribution of Communion (35). After the remaining Sacrament is returned to the tabernacle (36) the rite gives the option of silence or a sung “psalm or song of praise.” (37) The post-Communion prayer follows (38).

As at the introduction of the Long Rite, the concluding rites (39-41) give forms for an ordained leader and a lay person.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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