RCIA 300: Exorcism in the Penitential Rite

img_6803The rite gives two options for the Exorcism. The first is a straightforward prayer:

Father of mercies,
you sent your only Son
to rescue us from the slavery of sin
and to give us freedom as your children.

Look with love on these young people and fulfill their hopes;
they have already experienced temptation
and they acknowledge their faults.

Lead them from darkness into your unfailing light,
cleanse them from sin,
let them know the joy of your peace,
and guide them safely through life.

We ask this through Christ our Lord.

The other choice is a very interesting ritual dialogue:


God of mercy and Father of all, look upon N. and N.,
who will soon be baptized.


We have heard the words of Jesus and we love them.


Even though they try to live as your children,
they sometimes find this difficult.


Father, we want always to do what pleases you,
but sometimes we find this hard.


Loving Father,
free these young people
from whatever could make them bad
and help them always to walk in your light.


We want to walk with Jesus,
who gave his life for us.
Help us, Father, to follow him.


If they stumble on the way
and do not please you,
help them up with the power of your hand,
that they may rise again
and continue on their journey to you
with Jesus Christ our Lord.


Father, give us strength.

Perhaps not one of this document’s shining moments. The idea of a dialogue here is earnest, but even if the words themselves weren’t awkward, you have the question of the theological accuracy of it. Is God displeased with misbehaving children, or is he saddened by sinful behaviors? Not to mention the need to memorize or read various responses. Choice A in a landslide.


About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in post-conciliar liturgy documents, RCIA, Rites. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to RCIA 300: Exorcism in the Penitential Rite

  1. Sally Tenero says:

    Can the Penitential rite be omitted at daily mass? We have a priest that never says it.
    Thank you

  2. Todd says:

    The penitential rite may be replaced with a sprinkling rite, but I’m assuming the priest goes straight to the opening prayer, right? That wouldn’t be “by the book.”

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