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Whole MIM






Chapter 3 Introductory Rites


69. For the basic Mass, with one celebrant and no deacon, the order for the procession to the altar is (IG 120):

a. the thurifier leads, if incense is used

b. ministers with lighted candles and between them an acolyte or other minister with the cross;

c. acolytes and other ministers;

d. a reader, who may carry the Book of the Gospels, but not the Lectionary, slightly elevated.

e. the priest who is to celebrate the Mass.

70. When there is a deacon, he carries the Book of the Gospels, if it is being carried. In the procession he walks next to the priest or in front of him (IG 172).

71. In a concelebrated Mass with a deacon, the concelebrants go ahead of the principle celebrant (IG 210).

72. When there is a concelebrated Mass without a deacon, but with an instituted reader, who would carry the Book of the Gospels? According to IG 194 "when no deacon is present the reader, wearing the appropriate vesture, may carry the Book of the Gospels, in that case he walks in front of the priest". However according to IG 208 "If a deacon is not present at a concelebrated Mass, functions which are proper to him may be performed by concelebrants." Since the task is specifically given to the instituted reader it would seem more appropriate for him to carry the Book of the Gospels, going in front of the concelebrants in the procession.

73. For Mass with Children, according to DMC 40 "It is sometimes proper to omit one or other element of the introductory rite..". So it seems that a decision could be made not to have an entrance procession. DMC 33 recommends that Conferences of Bishops consider special adaptions of processions for children.

74. For Mass combined with the Liturgy of the Hours "the whole celebration may begin either with the introductory verse and hymn [of the Liturgy of the Hours] .... or with the entrance song, procession, and celebrant's greeting ...; one of the introductory rites is thus omitted." It seems that the procession could be omitted. With a bishop, however, the Liturgy of the Hours is described as having an entrance procession (CB 193) although "necessary adaptions" may be made (CB 209).

75. In a Mass with a bishop celebrant, he walks behind the priests, but preceding his assisting ministers.

76. At a Mass in which the Bishop presides, but does not celebrate, he walks behind the celebrant, followed by his two deacons (or presbyter assistants, if there are no deacons). Behind them, are his ministers, who assist with the book, the miter, and the pastoral staff (CB 81, 177).

77. For the Stational Mass (according to CB 128) the order of procession is:

acolyte carrying cross, between seven acolytes (or at least two) with candlesticks with lighted candles
clergy, two by two
deacon, carrying the Book of the Gospels
deacons, two by two
concelebrants, two by two
the bishop, walking alone
two deacons assisting the bishop
the ministers who assist with the book, the miter, and the pastoral staff.

78. Surprisingly this omits the instituted readers. Perhaps they would carry candles with the instituted acolytes.



Copyright J.R. Lilburne, 18 March 2002. Last updated 15 April 2002.