Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Instruction on Eucharistic Worship - Sacred Congregation of Rites 1967 - Pt.8

13.  Influence of the Eucharist on the Daily Lives of the Faithful

What the faithful have received by faith and sacrament in the celebration of the Eucharist should have its effect on their way of life. They should seek to live joyfully and gratefully by the strength of this heavenly food, sharing in the death and resurrection of the Lord. And so everyone who has participated in the Mass should be "eager to do good works, to please God, and to live honestly, devoted to the Church, putting into practice what he has learnt, and growing in piety." 60 He will seek to fill the world with the Spirit of Christ and "in all things, in the very midst of human affairs" to become a witness of Christ.61

For no "Christian community can be built up unless it has as its basis and pivot the celebration of the holy Eucharist. It is from this therefore that any attempt to form a community must begin."62

14. Teaching Children About the Mass

Those who have charge of the religious instruction of children, especially parents, parish priests, and teachers, should be careful when they are introducing them gradually to the mystery of salvation,63 to give emphasis to instruction on the Mass. Instruction about the Eucharist, while being suited to the age and abilities of the children, should aim to convey the meaning of the Mass through the principal rites and prayers. It should also explain the place of the Mass in participation in the life of the Church.

All this should be borne in mind especially when children are being prepared for First Communion so that the First Communion may be seen as the full incorporation into the body of Christ.

15. Catechesis about the Mass Should Take the Rites and Prayers as Its Starting Point

The Council of Trent prescribes that pastors should frequently "either themselves or through others, expound some part of what is read at Mass and, among other things, explain something of the mystery of this sacrament."65

Pastors should therefore gently lead the faithful to a full understanding of this mystery of faith by suitable catechesis. This should take as its starting point the mysteries of the liturgical year and the rites and prayers which are part of the celebration. It should clarify their meaning and especially that of the great Eucharistic Prayer, and lead the people to a profound understanding of the mystery which these signify and accomplish.

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