Looking at the Prayer Over the Offerings

The language of sacrifice and offering or oblation is prominent in this second proper prayer By Father Randy Stice Last month, I began a three-part series on the proper prayers of the Mass: the Collect, the Prayer Over the Offerings, and the Prayer After Communion, beginning with the Collect. In …

The Collect: the prayer that begins Mass

All such prayers share a common structure and can teach us who God is and what to pray for By Father Randy Stice Every Mass is provided with three orations (prayers) proclaimed by the priest: the Collect at the beginning of the Mass, the Prayer over the Offerings, and the …

A look at the table of God’s Word

As Pope Benedict XVI wrote, Word and Eucharist are so intimately ‘bound together’ By Father Randy Stice The Mass is a single act of worship composed of two parts: the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist. The Church calls these two parts the two tables, the …

The Eucharistic Prayers for Reconciliation

The two reconciliation prayers lead us more deeply into the work of the Trinity By Father Randy Stice In 1975, the Church celebrated a Holy Year with two main themes: renewal and reconciliation. Pope St. Paul VI wanted these two themes to “resound repeatedly in liturgical celebrations, especially in the …

An exploration of the prefaces at Mass

The prefaces are sure guides for the graces that God wants to pour out on us in each season By Father Randy Stice In previous columns, we looked in detail at the Eucharistic Prayer, “the center and high point” of the Mass. In the last two columns, we considered the …

The General Calendar is a living document

The calendar includes the celebration of saints’ solemnities, feasts, and memorials By Father Randy Stice Last month, I introduced the liturgical year and discussed what is known as the Proper of Time (the temporal cycle) that begins in late November/early December with Advent and comprises the seasons (Advent, Christmas, Lent, …

The ‘today’ of Christ’s saving work

The Holy Spirit makes the special graces of each mystery of our salvation present By Father Randy Stice On Dec. 3, the first Sunday of Advent, we begin a new  liturgical year in which the Church “unfolds the whole mystery of Christ, from the incarnation and birth until the Ascension, …

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EP IV enriches liturgical and personal prayer

The Eucharistic Prayer has an invariable Preface and a ‘fuller summary of salvation history’ By Father Randy Stice In this series on the Eucharistic Prayer (EP), we have looked at Eucharistic Prayer I, the Roman Canon, which for centuries was the only Eucharistic Prayer used by the Roman Church, and …

Eucharistic Prayer I holds a privileged place

The Roman Canon has for centuries been a great prayer of thanksgiving and consecration Father Randy Stice In my July column, I began a series on the Eucharistic Prayer (EP) and gave examples from Eucharistic Prayer II, and in August I discussed Eucharistic Prayer III. This month I want to …

A closer look at Eucharistic Prayer III

Liturgical prayer—the words of the Mass—can enrich and inform our personal prayers By Father Randy Stice Last month I introduced the Eucharistic Prayer (EP), “the center and high point” of the Mass. The current liturgy has 13 Eucharistic Prayers. EP I (Roman Canon) was the only Eucharistic Prayer for many …

A catechesis on the Eucharistic Prayers

Their theological and spiritual riches are ‘the heart and summit of the celebration’ of Mass By Father Randy Stice The center and high point” of the Mass is the Eucharistic Prayer, “the prayer of thanksgiving and sanctification.” 1 Pope Benedict XVI describes it as action “in the highest sense of …

Summarizing Christ’s eucharistic presence

There are four key aspects of it; ultimately, His presence in the Eucharist can only be discerned by faith By Father Randy Stice The transformation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ is both miracle and mystery, something that we can never fully comprehend. But …