Page 7, 28th January 2000

28th January 2000
Page 7
Page 7, 28th January 2000 — Prayer is once again proclaimed aloud, and the people are

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Prayer is once again proclaimed aloud, and the people are

able to identify with this prayer which is uttered in their name (in the plural, "we"), standing is surely the most appropriate posture. The Eucharistic Prayer is a solemn liturgical action in which the saving works of Christ are remembered and made an ongoing reality. God is thanked and praised for them, and Christ's sacrifice once more offered to the Father in our name. This special prayer is proclaimed, not merely said, and so we should stand.

The second consideration is of the greatest importance. It does not seem to be widely understood that the Church has made an official ruling on this point, namely in section 21 of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal: "Unless other provision is made, [the people] should stand...from the prayer over the gifts to the end of Mass, with the exceptions below..." [The exceptions cover kneeling for the consecration and sitting during a period of silence after communion.] The same section also says that the bishop's conference may adapt these actions and postures to the usage of the people, "but these adaptations must correspond to the character and meaning of each part of the celebration." The General Instruction and the Apostolic Constitution promulgating the Roman Missal of 1970, are, needless to say, fully authoritative documents. It is clearly the mind of the Church that we, ministers and people, should be standing during the proclamation of the Eucharistic Prayer.

Yours faithfully, DONALD WITHEY Editor of Liturgy Cheltenham, Glos

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