Catholic liturgy

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In the Catholic Church, liturgy is divine worship, the proclamation of the Gospel, and active charity. [1]

Catholic Church Largest Christian church, led by the Bishop of Rome

The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide as of 2017. As the world's oldest and largest continuously functioning international institution, it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church is headed by the Bishop of Rome, known as the pope. Its central administration, the Holy See, is in the Vatican City, an enclave within the city of Rome in Italy.

Contents

Liturgical principles

As explained in greater detail in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and its shorter Compendium, the liturgy is something that "the whole Christ", Head and Body, celebrates — Christ, the one High Priest, together with his Body, the Church in heaven and on earth. Involved in the heavenly liturgy are the angels and the saints of the Old Covenant and the New, in particular Mary, the Mother of God, the Apostles, the Martyrs and "a great multitude, which no man could number, out of every nation and of all tribes and peoples and tongues" (Revelation 7:9). The Church on earth, "a royal priesthood" (1 Peter 2:9), celebrates the liturgy in union with these: the baptized offering themselves as a spiritual sacrifice, the ordained ministers celebrating at the service of all the members of the Church in accordance with the order received, and bishops and priests acting in the person of Christ.

<i>Catechism of the Catholic Church</i> book by Congregatie voor de Geloofsleer

The Catechism of the Catholic Church is a catechism promulgated for the Catholic Church by Pope John Paul II in 1992. It sums up, in book form, the beliefs of the Catholic faithful.

The Catholic liturgy uses signs and symbols whose significance, based on nature or culture, has been made more precise through Old Testament events and has been fully revealed in the person and life of Christ. Some of these signs and symbols come from the world of creation (light, water, fire, bread, wine, oil), others from life in society (washing, anointing, breaking bread), others from Old Testament sacred history (the Passover rite, sacrifices, laying on of hands, consecrating persons and objects).

Sacrifice offering to gods

Sacrifice is the offering of food, objects or the lives of animals or humans to a higher purpose, in particular divine beings, as an act of propitiation or worship.

These signs are closely linked with words. Though in a sense the signs speak for themselves, they need to be accompanied and vivified by the spoken word. Taken together, word and action indicate what the rite signifies and effects.

Sacraments

Sacraments in the Catholic Church are efficacious signs, perceptible to the senses, of grace. According to the Church's theology, they have been instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church, and through them divine life is bestowed on us. They are means by which Christ gives the particular grace indicated by the sign aspect of the sacrament in question, helping the individual to advance in holiness, and contributing to the Church' s growth in charity and in giving witness. Not every individual receives every sacrament, but the Catholic Church sees the sacraments as necessary means of salvation for the faithful, conferring each sacrament's particular grace, whether forgiveness of sins, adoption as children of God, confirmation to Christ and the Church. The effect of the sacraments comes ex opere operato (by the very fact of being administered). Regardless of the personal holiness of the minister administering the sacraments, Christ provides the graces of which they are signs. However, a recipient's own lack of proper disposition to receive the grace conveyed can block their effectiveness in that person. The sacraments presuppose faith and, in addition, their words and ritual elements nourish, strengthen and give expression to faith.[Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 224]

Divine grace is a theological term present in many religions. It has been defined as the divine influence which operates in humans to regenerate and sanctify, to inspire virtuous impulses, and to impart strength to endure trial and resist temptation; and as an individual virtue or excellence of divine origin.

There are seven Sacraments:

Baptism Christian rite of admission and adoption, almost invariably with the use of water

Baptism is a Christian rite of admission and adoption, almost invariably with the use of water, into Christianity. The synoptic gospels recount that John the Baptist baptised Jesus. Baptism is considered a sacrament in most churches, and as an ordinance in others. Baptism is also called christening, although some reserve the word "christening" for the baptism of infants. It has also given its name to the Baptist churches and denominations.

Liturgical music

Singing and music, especially Gregorian chant, are associated with the liturgy. The Gregorian chant, also called cantilena Romana, has been, since its codification, (putatively under Pope St. Gregory the Great, although actually occurring later,) and remains the official music of the Latin Rite Catholic Liturgy, prescribed by Church documents to be given "pride of place" in Her liturgies. This form of music of the Church is contained in the Sacramentary Roman Missal as well as the chant books, e.g. graduale Romanum, antiphonale, liber cantualis. Other Rites within the Catholic Church, (e.g. Maronite, Byzantine, Ambrosian) have their own forms of chant which are proper to their Divine Liturgies. Gregorian chant provides the Latin Church with a musical identity, and like the ancient Liturgical language, provided and still provides Her Liturgies with a unifying element as Her catholicity ("universality',) has become more apparent, via the international travel of recent popes, worldwide media originating in the Vatican, etc. Also associated with the liturgy are sacred images, which proclaim the same message as do the words of Sacred Scripture sung to the sacred melodies of the chant, and which help to awaken and nourish faith.

Gregorian chant Form of song

Gregorian chant is the central tradition of Western plainchant, a form of monophonic, unaccompanied sacred song in Latin of the Roman Catholic Church. Gregorian chant developed mainly in western and central Europe during the 9th and 10th centuries, with later additions and redactions. Although popular legend credits Pope Gregory I with inventing Gregorian chant, scholars believe that it arose from a later Carolingian synthesis of Roman chant and Gallican chant.

Ambrosians are members of one of the religious brotherhoods which at various times since the 14th century have sprung up in and around Milan and also a 16th-century sect of Anabaptist Ambrosians.

The 1967 document Musicam sacram , that implemented the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy after the Second Vatican Council, repeatedly mentions facilitating the full, active participation of the congregation as called for by the Council. [2] [3] so that "unity of hearts is more profoundly achieved by the union of voices. [4] Musicam Sacram states: "One cannot find anything more religious and more joyful in sacred celebrations than a whole congregation expressing its faith and devotion in song. Therefore the active participation of the whole people, which is shown in singing, is to be carefully promoted." [5] It calls for fostering this congregational participation through attention to choice of song directors, [6] to choice of songs, [7] and to the nature of the congregation. [8] It mentions the duty to achieve this participation on the part of choirs, choirs directors, pastors, organists, and instrumentalists. [9] To achieve full, active participation of the congregation, great restraint in introducing new hymns has proven most helpful. [10] To this end also, the General Instruction of the Roman Missal recommends use of seasonal responsorial psalms and also keeping to a song that all can sing while processing to Communion, to “express the communicants’ union in spirit by means of the unity of their voices, to show joy of heart, and to highlight more clearly the ‘communitarian’ nature of the procession to receive Communion.” [11]

Devotional life of the Church

In addition to the sacraments, instituted by Christ, there are many sacramentals, sacred signs (rituals or objects) that derive their power from the prayer of the Church. They involve prayer accompanied by the sign of the cross or other signs. Important examples are blessings (by which praise is given to God and his gifts are prayed for), consecrations of persons, and dedications of objects to the worship of God.

Popular devotions are not strictly part of the liturgy, but if they are judged to be authentic, the Church encourages them. They include veneration of relics of saints, visits to sacred shrines, pilgrimages, processions (including Eucharistic processions), the Stations of the Cross (also known as the Way of the Cross), Holy Hours, Eucharistic Adoration, Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, and the Rosary.

In its devotion the Church makes a distinction (Catechism of the Catholic Church, s2132) between respectful veneration on one hand and adoration or worship on the other. Adoration is due to God alone - this includes the Eucharist, since Christ is truly present. Veneration of an image or relic of a saint is defined as respect paid to what is represented in the image, not the image itself.

Liturgical time

Sunday, which commemorates the resurrection of Christ and has been celebrated by Christians from the earliest times (1 Corinthians 16:2; Revelation 1:10; Ignatius of Antioch: Magn.9:1; Justin Martyr: I Apology 67:5), is the outstanding occasion for the liturgy; but no day, not even any hour, is excluded from celebrating the liturgy. The sole exception is for the Eucharistic liturgy on Good Friday and on Holy Saturday before the Easter Vigil, when it is not celebrated.

According to the Catechism, Easter is not simply one feast among others, but the "Feast of feasts", the center of the liturgical year. Grunewald - christ.jpg
According to the Catechism, Easter is not simply one feast among others, but the "Feast of feasts", the center of the liturgical year.

The Liturgy of the Hours consecrates to God the whole course of day and night. Lauds and Vespers (morning and evening prayer) are the principal hours. To these are added one or three intermediate prayer periods (traditionally called Terce, Sext and None), another prayer period to end the day (Compline), and a special prayer period called the Office of Readings (formerly known as Matins) at no fixed time, devoted chiefly to readings from the Scriptures and ecclesiastical writers. The Second Vatican Council suppressed an additional 'hour' called Prime. The prayers of the Liturgy of the Hours consist principally of the Psalter or Book of Psalms. Like the Mass, the Liturgy of the Hours has inspired great musical compositions. An earlier name for the Liturgy of the Hours and for the books that contained the texts was the Divine Office (a name still used as the title of one English translation), the Book of Hours, and the Breviary. Bishops, priests, deacons and members of religious institutes are obliged to pray at least some parts of the Liturgy of the Hours daily, an obligation that applied also to subdeacons, until the post VCII suppression of the subdiaconate.

Sacred space

New Testament worship "in spirit and in truth" (John 4:24) is not linked exclusively with any particular place or places, since Christ is seen as the true temple of God, and through him Christians too and the whole Church become, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, a temple of God (1 Corinthians 3:16). Nevertheless, the earthly condition of the Church on earth makes it necessary to have certain places in which to celebrate the liturgy. Within these churches, chapels and oratories, Catholics put particular emphasis on the altar, the tabernacle (in which the Eucharist is kept), the seat of the bishop ('cathedra') or priest, and the baptismal font.

"The mystery of Christ is so unfathomably rich that it cannot be exhausted by its expression in any single liturgical tradition. The history of the blossoming and development of these rites witnesses to a remarkable complementarity. When the Churches lived their respective liturgical traditions in the communion of the faith and the sacraments of the faith, they enriched one another and grew in fidelity to Tradition and to the common mission of the whole Church." (CCC 1201) As catholic or universal, the Church believes it can and should hold within its unity the true riches of these peoples and cultures.

"In the liturgy, above all that of the sacraments, there is an immutable part, a part that is divinely instituted and of which the Church is the guardian, and parts that can be changed, which the Church has the power, and on occasion the duty, to adapt to the cultures of recently evangelized peoples." (CCC 1205)

Personal prayer

Likewise, the great variety of Catholic spirituality enables individual Catholics to pray privately in many different ways. The fourth and last part of the Catechism thus summarized the Catholic's response to the mystery of faith: "This mystery, then, requires that the faithful believe in it, that they celebrate it, and that they live from it in a vital and personal relationship with the living and true God. This relationship is prayer." (CCC 2558)

See also

Related Research Articles

Eucharist Christian rite

The Eucharist is a Christian rite that is considered a sacrament in most churches, and as an ordinance in others. According to the New Testament, the rite was instituted by Jesus Christ during the Last Supper; giving his disciples bread and wine during the Passover meal, Jesus commanded his followers to "do this in memory of me" while referring to the bread as "my body" and the cup of wine as "the new covenant in my blood". Through the Eucharistic celebration Christians remember both Christ's sacrifice of himself on the cross and his commission of the apostles at the Last Supper.

Mass (liturgy) type of worship service within many Christian denomination

Mass is the main eucharistic liturgical service in many forms of Western Christianity. The term Mass is commonly used in the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches, as well as in some Lutheran, Methodist, Western Rite Orthodox, and Old Catholic churches.

The Mass of Saint Paul VI is the most commonly used form of the Mass in use today within the Catholic Church. It was first promulgated, after the Second Vatican Council (1962–65), by Pope Paul VI in 1969 and published in the 1970 edition of the Roman Missal, and was revised by Pope John Paul II in 2000. As thus revised, it "is and continues to be the normal Form – the Forma ordinaria" of the Roman Rite Mass, as intended for use in most contexts.

Christian liturgy is a pattern for worship used by a Christian congregation or denomination on a regular basis. Although the term liturgy is used to mean public worship in general, the Byzantine Rite uses the term "Divine Liturgy" to denote the Eucharistic service.

Christian worship act of attributing reverent honor and homage to God

In Christianity, worship is the act of attributing reverent honor and homage to God. In the New Testament, various words are used to refer to the term worship. One is proskuneo which means to bow down to God or kings.

Words of Institution

The Words of Institution are words echoing those of Jesus himself at his Last Supper that, when consecrating bread and wine, Christian Eucharistic liturgies include in a narrative of that event. Eucharistic scholars sometimes refer to them simply as the verba.

Eucharistic discipline

Eucharistic discipline is the term applied to the regulations and practices associated with an individual preparing for the reception of the Eucharist. Different Christian traditions require varying degrees of preparation, which may include a period of fasting, prayer, repentance, and confession.

Roman Rite Most widespread liturgical rite in the Latin Church

The Roman Rite is the main liturgical rite of the Latin Church, the main particular church sui iuris of the Catholic Church. It is the most widespread liturgical rite in Christianity as a whole. The Roman Rite gradually became the predominant rite used by the Western Church, developed out of many local variants from Early Christianity on, not amounting to distinctive rites, that existed in the medieval manuscripts, but have been progressively reduced since the invention of printing, most notably since the reform of liturgical law in the 16th century at the behest of the Council of Trent (1545–63) and more recently following the Second Vatican Council (1962–65).

Liturgical music music genre

Liturgical music originated as a part of religious ceremony, and includes a number of traditions, both ancient and modern. Liturgical music is well known as a part of Catholic Mass, the Anglican Holy Communion service and Evensong, the Lutheran Divine Service, the Orthodox liturgy and other Christian services including the Divine Office. Such ceremonial music in the Judeo-Christian tradition can be traced back to both the Temple in Jerusalem and synagogue worship of the Hebrews.

Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament

Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, also called Benediction with the Blessed Sacrament or the Rite of Eucharistic Exposition and Benediction, is a devotional ceremony, celebrated especially in the Roman Catholic Church, but also in some other Christian traditions such as Anglo-Catholicism, whereby a bishop, priest, or a deacon blesses the congregation with the Eucharist at the end of a period of adoration.

Anglican eucharistic theology

Anglican eucharistic theology is diverse in practice, reflecting the comprehensiveness of Anglicanism. Its sources include prayer book rubrics, writings on sacramental theology by Anglican divines, and the regulations and orientations of ecclesiastical provinces. The principal source material is the Book of Common Prayer, specifically its eucharistic prayers and Article XXVIII of the Thirty-Nine Articles. Article XXVIII comprises the foundational Anglican doctrinal statement about the Eucharist, although its interpretation varies among churches of the Anglican Communion and in different traditions of churchmanship such as Anglo-Catholicism and Evangelical Anglicanism.

Eucharist in the Catholic Church

The Eucharist in the Catholic Church is a sacrament celebrated as "the source and summit" of the Christian life. The Eucharist is celebrated daily during the celebration of Mass, the eucharistic liturgy. The term Eucharist is also used for the bread and wine when transubstantiated, according to Catholic teaching, into the body and blood of Jesus Christ. "At the Last Supper, on the night he was betrayed, our Saviour instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his Body and Blood."

Mass in the Catholic Church Central liturgical ritual

The Mass, known more fully as the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the central liturgical ritual in the Catholic Church where the bread and wine are consecrated and become the body and blood of Christ. As defined by the Church at the Council of Trent, in the Mass, "The same Christ who offered himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross, is present and offered in an unbloody manner." The Church describes the Holy Mass as "the source and summit of the Christian life". It teaches that through consecration by an ordained priest the bread and wine become the sacrificial body, blood, soul, and divinity of Christ as the sacrifice on Calvary made truly present once again on the altar. The Catholic Church permits only baptised members in the state of grace to receive Christ in the Eucharist.

In persona Christi is a Latin phrase meaning “in the person of Christ”, an important concept in Roman Catholicism and, in varying degrees, to other Christian traditions. A priest is In persona Christi, because he acts as Christ and as God. An extended term, In persona Christi capitis, “in the person of Christ the head,” was introduced in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

Mediator Dei, a papal encyclical, was issued by Pope Pius XII on 20 November 1947. It was the first encyclical devoted entirely to liturgy. The encyclical suggested new directions and active participation instead of a merely passive role for the faithful in the liturgy, in liturgical ceremonies and in the life of their parish. The encyclical also emphasized the importance of the Eucharist. Mediator Dei is one of the more important encyclicals of Pope Pius XII. The encyclical condemned certain excesses of liturgical reform and stressed the importance of the union of sacrifice and altar with communion, which greatly directed the reforms undertaken during and after Vatican II. It was written in part in response to the liturgical movement under way since early in the 20th century.

Liturgical book Christian prayer book

A liturgical book, or service book, is a book published by the authority of a church body that contains the text and directions for the liturgy of its official religious services.

Redemptionis sacramentum {"Sacrament of Redemption,") is the title of an instruction on the proper way to celebrate Mass in the Roman Rite and, with the necessary adjustments, in other Latin liturgical rites. It was issued by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments on 25 March 2004. to aid bishops in implementing the Roman Missal, issued in 2002. It follows Pope John Paul II's 2003 encyclical, Ecclesia de Eucharistia calling for an Instruction on the liturgical norms.

This is a glossary of terms used within the Catholic Church.

Sacraments of the Catholic Church seven visible rituals that Catholics see as signs of Gods presence, consisting of those of initiation (baptism, confirmation, eucharist), of healing (reconciliation, anointing of the sick), and of service (holy orders, matrimony)

There are seven sacraments of the Catholic Church, which according to Catholic theology were instituted by Jesus and entrusted to the Church. Sacraments are visible rites seen as signs and efficacious channels of the grace of God to all those who receive them with the proper disposition. The sevenfold list of sacraments is often organized into three categories: the sacraments of initiation, consisting of baptism, confirmation, and the eucharist; the sacraments of healing, consisting of reconciliation and anointing of the sick; and the sacraments of service: holy orders and matrimony.

<i>Divine Worship: The Missal</i> missal for Anglican Use Catholics

Divine Worship: The Missal (DW:™️) is the liturgical book containing the instructions and texts for the celebration of Mass by the former Anglicans within the Roman Catholic Church in the three personal ordinariates of Great Britain, United States and Canada, and Australia. The rite contained in this missal is a variant of the Roman Rite eucharistic liturgy. It was approved for use beginning on the first Sunday of Advent, November 29, 2015.

References

  1. Catechism of the Catholic Church 1070 In the New Testament the word "liturgy" refers not only to the celebration of divine worship but also to the proclamation of the Gospel and to active charity.
  2. "Sacrosanctum concilium (114)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  3. "Musicam sacram (15)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  4. "Musicam sacram (5)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  5. "Musicam (16)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  6. "Musicam sacram (5)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  7. "Musicam sacram (9)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  8. "Musicam sacram (10)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  9. "Musicam sacram (19-20, 67)" . Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  10. "How to get more people to sing at Mass: Stop adding new hymns". America Magazine. 2019-05-08. Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  11. "General Instruction of the Roman Missal (61, 86)". www.vatican.va. Retrieved 2019-09-25.