VNO 13: For Religious

The thirteenth Mass For Various Needs And Occasions is “For Religious.” We have options A and B. The latter is for the twenty-fifth or fiftieth anniversary of profession. I think we assume the former is for any community’s important occasion. The text of the prayers suggest this, referencing people in the plural, for example:

… grant that, following Christ and renouncing the things of this world, they may faithfully serve you and their neighbor in a spirit of poverty and in humility of heart. (Collect)

Many readings are given, including these for the Old Testament: 1 Kings 19:4-9a, 11-15a (see below), Song of Songs 8:6-7, Isaiah 61:9-11, Hosea 2:16, 21-22 … respectively Elijah in the desert, true love, the thanksgiving following Jesus’ cited passage at the start of his public ministry (Luke 4:16ff), and God’s betrothal of his people.

The Psalms in the Liturgy of the Word: 19, 27, 45, 112, 123, 148–some appropriate for women, some for men, some for either or both.

As for New Testament, the choices are Acts 2:42-47 (the ideal community), 1 Cor 1:22-31 (signs and wisdom), 1 Cor 7:25-35 (advice to virgins), Phil 2:1-4 (imitation of Christ), 1 Petr 1:3-9 (Peter’s thanksgiving), Rev 3:14b, 20-22 (Jesus knocks at the door).

Gospel readings: Matt 11:25-30 (the easy yoke), Matt 16:24-27 (the cross), Matt 19:3-12 (marriage and divorce–go figure), Mark 3:31-35 (Jesus’ family), Luke 10:38-42 (Martha and Mary), John 15:1-8 (vine and branches).

Many Scripture passages from which to choose. Obviously, those preparing the liturgy have a lot of options–themes if you will–from which to choose.

Let’s look at the propers.

Entrance Antiphon Ps 37:3-4

Trust in the Lord and do good, and you will dwell in the land and be secure. Find your delight in the Lord, and he will grant your heart’s desire.

The entrance antiphon for option A is embedded in a long Psalter text, an alphabetic psalm. Lots of verses from which to choose in a meditation on the relationship between good and evil.

We saw this passage in the Liturgy of the Word:

Communion Antiphon 1 Kings 19:7

The angel of the Lord said to Elijah: Get up and eat, else the journey will be too much for you!

Psalm 34, perhaps. If Psalm 19 isn’t a choice for the Liturgy of the Word, I think verses from 8 onward would be a good match for this text.

Another option:

Or: Rev 22: 17, 20

The Spirit and the bride say: Come. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

What text would you use for verses? Maybe one of the praise canticles in the book of Revelation. Or that Psalm of praise from the Liturgy of the Word, the 148th.

We have a different set of options “On the Twenty-Fifth or Fiftieth Anniversary of Religious Profession.”

Entrance Antiphon Cf. Ps 40:8-9

Behold, I come, O Lord, that I may do your will. I have vowed it, and your law lies deep within me.

Communion Antiphon Ps 42:2

Like the deer that yearns for running streams, so my soul is yearning for you, my God.

A person preparing liturgy for an anniversary probably need not look beyond the Psalms from which these antiphons are lifted. But if more were needed for the Communion Procession, Psalm 43, 63, or 84 would provide additional fit.

Some years ago, we blogged on Masses And Prayers For Various Needs And Occasions. In the GIRM, sections 368-378 cover the universal regulations on their use. You can check our brief comments here and here and here. The USCCB’s unannotated text on the matter is here.


About catholicsensibility

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