PS 11-13: Lenten Liturgy

Jesus arms outstretchedRemember, you can check the full document Paschale Solemnitatis on this site, among many on the internet. Having reviewed RCIA yesterday, let’s review the first three sections which inform us of “Celebrations during the Lenten season.” First a reminder of the importance of Sundays and weekdays in Lent:

11. The Sundays of Lent take precedence over all feasts and all solemnities. Solemnities occurring on these Sundays are observed on the preceding Saturday. (Cf. General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar, 5, 56f) The weekdays of Lent have precedence over obligatory memorials. (Cf. General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar 16b)

Preachers are given their marching orders for this season:

12. The catechesis on the Paschal mystery and the sacraments should be given a special place in the Sunday homilies, the text of the Lectionary should be carefully explained, particularly the passages of the Gospel which illustrate the diverse aspects of Baptism and of the other sacraments, and of the mercy of God.

A number of good themes here, any single one of which could be developed for the whole season of Lent. Certainly there’s not much room for preaching outside these guidelines.

13. Pastors should frequently and as fully as possible explain the word of God, in homilies on weekdays, in celebrations of the word of God, in penitential celebrations, (Cf. old GIRM 42; cf. Rite of Penance, 36-37) in various reunions, in visiting families or on the occasion of blessing families. The faithful should try to attend weekday Mass and where this is not possible they should at least be encouraged to read the lessons, either with their family or in private.

Lent as a time of encounter with the Word of God: this may be the most significant approach of all. The CDWDS is suggesting a use of the Lectionary as a wedge to get people praying about the Scriptures and developing their own prayer life during these Forty Days. How to accomplish this well would be a matter for a pastor and possibly the pastoral staff to consider carefully.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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