RDCA II, 66-68: Incensation

After anointing, the incense is brought out. The 2003 ICEL draft gives an interesting option that “if desired, a heap of incense mixed with thin candles is made on the altar.” What do you make of that option?

66. After the rite of anointing, a brazier for burning incense or aromatic gums. The bishop puts incense into the brazier, saying: 

may our prayer ascend as incense in your sight.
As this building is filled with fragrance,
so may your Church fill the world

with the fragrance of Christ.

67. Then the bishop puts incense into some censers and incenses the altar; he returns to the chair, is incensed, and then sits. Ministers, walking through the church, incense the people and the walls.

68. Meanwhile, one of the following antiphons is sung with Psalm 138: 

An Angel stood by the altar in the temple, holding a golden censer. 


From the hand of the angel, clouds of incense rose in the presence of the Lord. 

Another appropriate song is sung.

This completes the second of three major signs after the dedication prayer. After anointing and incense, we will come to the lighting of the church in tomorrow’s post.


About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Rite of Dedication of a Church and an Altar, Rites. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to RDCA II, 66-68: Incensation

  1. I believe that other option in the 2003 draft is derived from the Ceremonial of Bishops.

  2. David Gregory says:

    The heap of incense option does come from the Ceremonial of Bishops, but it was providing an option more similar to the way incense rite was carried in the pre-Vatican II ritual.

    Obviously, it only works with a marble altar and the rite allows a wood altar to be dedicated in which case a heap of incense and candles might not be the best the idea.

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