RDCA II, 69-71: Lighting

The dedication rites end with the third of three symbols. First, clean up the altar, especially if the option for a mound of incense has been used:

69. After the incensation, a few ministers wipe the table of the altar with cloths, and if need be, cover it with a waterproof linen. They then cover the altar with a cloth, and, if opportune, decorate it with flowers. They arrange in a suitable manner the candles needed for the celebration of Mass, and, if need be, the cross.

70. Then the bishop gives to the deacon a lighted candle and says:

Light of Christ,
shine forth in the Church,

and bring all nations
to the fullness of truth.

Then the bishop sits. The deacon goes to the altar and lights the candles for the celebration of the Eucharist.

71. Then the festive lighting takes place: all the candles, including those at the places where the anointings were made, and other lamps are lit as a sign of rejoicing. Meanwhile the following antiphon is sung with the canticle of Tobias.

Your light will come, Jerusalem; upon you the glory of the Lord will dawn and all nations will walk in your light, alleluia. 

Or, during Lent:

Jerusalem, city of God, you will shine with the light of God’s splendor; all people on earth will pay you homage.

Another appropriate song may be sung, especially one in honor of Christ, the light of the world.

The entire canticle of Tobit is not given, only the concluding verses which sing of the expected final reunion in a restored Jerusalem: 13:10; 13-14ab; 14c-15; 17.

The guidance to procure “festive lighting” is well-considered. How might that happen? In one renovated church I served, the lighting was upgraded by a factor of six, and it wasn’t until this moment of the dedication that we engaged the full light setting of the “new” church. Don’t underestimate the impact of well-designed lighting. Don’t forget the dedication candles, either.


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.

One Response to RDCA II, 69-71: Lighting

  1. I appreciate the dedication candles and the opportunities to light them again on appropriate days, such as the anniversary of dedication.

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