VNO 31: In Time of War or Civil Disturbance

This Mass is considered to be closely related to VNO #30. The Lectionary gives this rubric:

Readings from the Mass for Peace and Justice may also be used, nos. 887-891

That said, I would interpret the need for celebration for a time when the faith community is in a region experiencing violence and members or their loved ones are threatened. It’s a good cause to celebrate a Mass. Not good enough for a replacement on an ordinary Sunday. But worth a consideration, certainly.

Old Testament choices include the murder of Abel (Genesis 4:3-10–war is about betrayal and murder), the Micah version of swords into plowshares (4:1-4), or the king’s entry into Jerusalem (Zechariah 9:9-10). From the New Testament, possibilities are Galatians 5:17-26 (works of the flesh in contrast to fruits of the Spirit), Ephesians 4:30-5:2 (more works of the flesh to be undercut by love), or James 4:1-10 (causes of war). Gospel choices are just two: Jesus teaching on anger (Matthew 5:20-24) or on love and keeping commandments (John 15:9-12).

Other Scripture selections have some overlap with the Mass for Peace and Justice, including the exact same verses from Psalm 72 or 85.

As we get deep into the VNO Masses, we see a number of non-Psalm passages used for the antiphon. Including one of those chosen for entrance:

Entrance Antiphon Jeremiah 29: 11, 12, 14

The Lord said: I think thoughts of peace and not of affliction.
You will call upon me, and I will answer you, and I will lead back your captives from every place.

Verses 10 through 14 is a lovely lyrical reading that doesn’t appear in the modern Lectionary. A loss, I think. But here, one gets to sing the text.

Or: Cf. Psalm 18: 5-7

The waves of death rose about me; the pains of the netherworld surrounded me. In my anguish I called to the Lord, and from his holy temple he heard my voice.

And for Communion:

Communion Antiphon John 14: 27

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you, says the Lord.
Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.

Isaiah 9, 11 or 25; Psalm 46 or 131; the Beatitudes.

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 the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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