PS 83-84: Procession and Proclamation at the Easter Vigil

Jesus arms outstretchedRemember, you can check the full document Paschale Solemnitatis on this site, among many on the internet.

In these two sections, we continue looking at the Liturgy of Light. From the beginning outside the church (preferably) the people move. Their own candles are not yet lit.

83. The procession, by which the people enter the church, should be led by the light of the paschal candle alone. Just as the children of Israel were guided at night by a pillar of fire, so similarly Christians follow the risen Christ.

Here’s an interesting innovation outside of the pages of the Roman Missal:

There is no reason why to each response “Thanks be to God” there should not be added some acclamation in honor of Christ.

What do you make of this? The past few years, we have attempted the Taize ostinato “The Lord is my Light” for the procession around the church and the entrance into it, inserting the acclamation given at three points. I think this can be improved upon, and possibly a longer acclamation. “Save Us, Savior” as something known to the assembly?

Light for candles should be passed once inside the church:

The light from the paschal candle should be gradually passed to the candles which it is fitting that all present should hold in their hands, the electric lighting being switched off.

And we recall the hierarchy of preferred persons to sing the Exsultet, right?

84. The deacon makes the Easter Proclamation, which tells by means of a great poetic text the whole Easter mystery placed in the context of the economy of salvation. In case of necessity, where there is no deacon, and the celebrating priest is unable to sing it, a cantor may do so. The bishops’ conferences may adapt this proclamation by inserting into it acclamations from the people. (Cf. Roman Missal, The Easter Vigil, 17)

I’m not aware the USCCB has endorsed possible acclamations. It happens, so I hear; but it is rare.

Thoughts and comments?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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One Response to PS 83-84: Procession and Proclamation at the Easter Vigil

  1. Liam says:

    A reminder: the full *form* of the Exsultet is an anaphora. And the offering is of the wax Paschal candle, which is consumed (gradually) by fire/light. As an anaphora it’s unique in many respects, not least of which is that it may be proclaimed by some other than a priest or bishop.

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