We’ll take the introduction in small bites daily from here for the next week or so.
164. A rite for viaticum within Mass and another for viaticum outside of Mass are provided. If possible, and with the permission of the Ordinary, viaticum should take place within the full eucharistic celebration, with the family, friends, and other members of the Christian community taking part. The rite for viaticum outside Mass is used when the full eucharistic celebration cannot take place. Again, if it is possible, others should take part.
As with many of the other rites with the sick, two forms are given in the PCS. Your first choice is viaticum within Mass, and with the celebration of family members, friends, and the faith community.
I can’t say I’ve ever been exposed to a parish Mass in which viaticum was celebrated. I know I’ve never been invited to provide liturgical assistance for a viaticum Mass in a home or care facility. Do clergy use this option, or does the celebration get bounced to the “outside Mass” option?
How much does the American/North American/Western privacy around dying and death hamper the Church’s desire that these rites be public celebrations, even outside the circle of family and friends?