Lenten greetings! I hope that you have been
able to find time for prayeful solitude during
this season in which we reflect on the meaning
of our Baptism.
Though we are in the midst of Lent,
those who prepare the liturgy are already
anticipating the celebration of the Sacred
Paschal Triduum and ways the community
can improve its observance each year. In this
issue Robert Valle, a director of music and
liturgy, provides a plan for evaluating the
parish celebration of the Triduum. Parish
staff and liturgy committees will find his
questions and his approach valuable as they
review their liturgy and the participation of
the faithful. He suggests that brief conversations
and notes be taken after each liturgy, so you will want to
read "A Prayerful Evaluation of the Parish Triduum" well before
the observance of the Three Days.
In "An Invitation to Humble Service," Ronald Patrick
Raab, csc, reflects on the Collect that is prayed before the
Blessing of Baptismal Water during the Easter Vigil. His consideration
of this prayer will help ministers ponder the love God
has for us as the elect are invited to be baptized. As Fr. Raab
meditates on this text, we are pulled into the awe of the moment
for the presider, the elect, and the assembly. The words recall not
only God's love but the service that is part of our Christian life.
The art and environment team will be especially interested
in the article "Decor for First Communion, Confirmation, and
Marriage," by J. Philip Horrigan. But this piece should not be
reserved only for those who prepare the environment. The
author posits that parishes should have in place a policy concerning
decor for the celebration of the Sacrament of Matrimony.
Making such a policy available in the parish
office and on the website will prevent
The article "Celebrating the
Sacraments in a Bilingual Community" tells
of how one parish has sought full, active,
and conscious participation in the liturgy
among both English and Spanish speakers.
Terry Navarro explains how the parish grew
from celebrating one Mass in Spanish to
seeking to provide for all of the spiritual
needs of the bilingual community. Diversity
has been embraced and the parish community
has grown in many ways.
Administrators will want to be sure to
turn to the page of book reviews. The three
reviews in this issue focus on the spirituality of administration,
providing another perspective on what sometimes seems to be
routine work. Teresa Marshall-Patterson has reviewed these
books by Ann M. Garrido, Annmarie Sanders, IHM, and Donald
For parish bulletins and faith formation sessions, you will
want to download the articles on the sacraments of initiation.
"What Happened at My Baptism?" by Trish Sullivan Vanni, will
help parents and grandparents talk to children about the meaning
of their Baptism. The article "Why Are Three Sacraments
Received at the Easter Vigil?" by Kristopher W. Seaman, will
answer questions that many in your parish might have concerning
the reception of the initiation sacraments.
As you celebrate these seasons, try to nourish your spirit
as well as that of your parishioners. May the peace of Christ be
Bishop Joseph N. Perry
Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago
Using the liturgy as its source, Pastoral Liturgy® has been intentionally designed to be of service to the whole parish with resources for leaders and parishioners, those who are just beginning to learn about liturgy, and those who are seasoned volunteers and professionals.
The six 32-page, full-color issues follow the course of the liturgical year to provide guidance for liturgy preparation, faith formation, liturgical art and architecture, and the many areas of parish ministry that flow from the liturgy to witness the Gospel and build the kingdom of God.
Pastors, parish staffs, liturgy committees, catechists, musicians, architects, and everyone seeking to learn more about how the liturgy forms and informs all of parish life will find this resource a valuable support to understanding the liturgy more fully and incorporating it as the source for all they do. That's why Pastoral Liturgy® magazine is the liturgy magazine for the whole parish!