Understanding the Sacraments: The ‘peculiar graces’ of the Mass

The saints, including St. John of the Cross and St. Faustina, experienced this liturgical presence in profound ways By Father Randy Stice The meaning and power of the liturgical year was elegantly summarized by Vatican Council II: “Within the cycle of a year, moreover, she [the Church] unfolds the whole …

Understanding the sacraments: The Word of God in the liturgy – a closer look

The performance character of and the sacramentality of the Word are two aspects not fully appreciated today By Father Randy Stice In a previous column, I introduced the new Lectionary Supplement and briefly discussed aspects of the Word of God in the liturgy. In this column, I would like to look …

Understanding the sacraments: The Word of God in the liturgy

The Lectionary for Mass Supplement contains additions for a number of optional memorials By Father Randy Stice In its Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Vatican Council II stressed the multifaceted role of Sacred Scripture in the liturgy. “Sacred Scripture is of the greatest importance in the celebration of the liturgy. …

Understanding the sacraments: To rise with Christ

Vatican’s Congregation for the Faith issues instructions on burial and cremation practices By Father Randy Stice In October the Congregation for the Faith issued an instruction titled To Rise with Christ (Ad resurgendum cum Christo) that reiterates the Church’s “doctrinal and pastoral reasons for the preference of the burial of …

Understanding the sacraments: Pope Francis on the sacrament of penance

Priests must remember that in the confessional it is Christ who listens, forgives By Father Randy Stice In a recent message for National Liturgical Week in Italy, Pope Francis wrote that “all the liturgy is a place where mercy is encountered and welcomed in order to be given; a place …

Understanding the sacraments: The Mass — a mystery of mercy

It is ‘the place where the mercy of Christ is not only recalled but received’ By Father Randy Stice The tragic events of recent weeks and months recall the prophetic words of St. John Paul II in 1980, that as the human  conscience becomes increasingly secularized it “moves away from …

Understanding the sacraments: The ordination of permanent deacons

Diaconate again flourishes after centuries of decline within the Catholic Church By Father Randy Stice On June 11, Bishop Stika will ordain 24 men as permanent deacons. Permanent deacons “have embraced this ordained ministry as a permanent state of life” while “transitional” deacons will eventually be ordained priests. (Newsletter, USCCB …

Understanding the sacraments: A multilingual celebration of Mass

Guidelines for liturgy can enhance our cultural and linguistic diversity By Father Randy Stice One of the riches of diocese is its growing cultural diversity, with Mass celebrated in a number of different languages, including Spanish, Vietnamese, and Korean. In this respect we mirror the diversity of the Church in …

Understanding the sacraments: Revising the Liturgy of the Hours

Also known as the Divine Office, it is the official prayer of the Catholic Church By Father Randy Stice In recent columns we have looked at several revised liturgical books: the Order of Celebrating Marriage, the Order of Confirmation, and the third edition of the Misal Romano, the Spanish Missal. …

Understanding the sacraments: Misal Romano, Tercera Edición

Latest edition of Roman Missal’s Spanish translation may speed up approval of U.S. version By Father Randy Stice In recent columns I have discussed the new Order of Matrimony and the new translation of the Order of Confirmation. In this column I want to introduce the Misal Romano, Tercera Edición, …

Understanding the sacraments: ‘Order of Matrimony’ confirmed

Rome blesses English translation of second edition that outlines marriage rite By Father Randy Stice The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments (CDWDS) has approved the English translation of the Order of Celebrating Matrimony, Second Edition (OCM). The first edition was issued in Latin in 1969 …

Understanding the sacraments: A new ‘Order of Confirmation’

Archbishop Kurtz, USCCB president, sets implementation date for Pentecost Sunday 2016 By Father Randy Stice The new English translation of the Order of Confirmation has been confirmed by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. Publication is scheduled for this fall. Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz, president …