DMC 6-7

When we speak of “Masses With Children,” what age group constitutes the subject of the discussion?

6. The Directory is concerned with children who have not yet entered the period of preadolescence. It does not speak directly of children who are physically or mentally handicapped, because a broader adaptation is sometimes necessary for them. [See the Order of Mass with deaf and mute children of German-speaking regions approved, that is, confirmed by this Congregation, 26 June 1970.] Nevertheless, the following norms may also be applied to the handicapped, with the necessary changes.

I believe the psychological practice is to place this age at ten to thirteen years. Almost always, the North American scenario for Masses With Children is the Catholic school or some catechetical group, I suppose grade four and up would be excluded.

This is an interesting insight, as it presumes First Communion celebrations as a centerpiece of this age group, and not a graduation. Which is a good thing.

Section 7 gives you a preview of what’s to come in our next posts:

7. The first chapter of the Directory (nos. 8-15) gives a kind of foundation by considering the different ways in which children are introduced to the eucharistic liturgy. The second chapter briefly treats Masses with adults in which children also take part (nos. 16-19). Finally, the third chapter (nos. 20-54) treats at greater length Masses with children in which only some adults take part.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Directory for Masses With Children, Liturgy, post-conciliar liturgy documents. Bookmark the permalink.

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