topLiturgy Line                                         
A seasonal Liturgical Resource
from the Archdiocese of Seattle, Liturgy Office
Ordinary Time | Winter 2014
Rebuild your RCIA!
On Saturday, February 8th, join with fellow RCIA ministers in a day-long opportunity to learn from Dr. Jerry Galipeau about the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.
Sing to the Lord!
A two-day formation and retreat opportunity for pastoral musicians.
All parish and school musicians, and choir members are welcome to participate in any or all parts of this event.
Sessions include "The Music Documents", "Skills and Techniques", and "Chant and Hymnody."
There will also be opportunities for fellowship, Mass, and to explore new and favorite choral pieces in the "Sing the Seasons" choral reading session with Dr. Jerry Galipeau of World Library Publications.
February 7 and 8
The Chapel of St. Ignatius at Seattle University and Isaac Orr Conference Room at the Chancery.
Visit the Liturgy Office website for the full schedule and to register.
This event is free. A free-will offering will be collected.
Co-sponsored by the Liturgy Office and the NPM Seattle Chapter.
Liturgical Ministries Institute
The Liturgical Ministries Institute (LMI) offers educational opportunities for members of the assembly to deepen our understanding of the Sacred Liturgy.
Register today for any or all of the LMI courses which include Liturgical Basics, Sacramental Basics and more.
View the full list of LMI dates, location, and topics on the Liturgy Office website.
RCIA webinars available
The Library Media Center and the Liturgy Office have made DVD webinars on RCIA (from the North American Forum on the Catechumenate) available for check out.

View the Library Media Center's December newsletter for descriptions of the DVDs and information for reserving them today.
Master of Ceremonies workshop
A workshop on preparations by the Master of Ceremonies when the (arch)bishop comes to your parish to celebrate the liturgy (i.e. blessing, confirmation, dedication).
Saturday, March 22nd
St. Madeleine Sophie, Bellevue
9am-Noon (8:30am registration opens and light breakfast goodies provided)
$10.00 registration fee
Presenter: Father Steve Sallis
Register on the Liturgy Office website.
Liturgy of the Hours Retreat
* Learn to pray the Liturgy of the Hours and the spirituality of the Psalms from Brother Aelred Woodard, OSB and Andrew Casad and how this regular prayer of the Church leads us to Christ in his mysteries.
* Experience praying the Liturgy of the Hours in plainchant and learn skills for leading the Hours in your parish, school, or community.
January 24-26 at the Palisades.
Calendar of Events

Mass for Peace and Justice in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr
Saturday, January 18
St. James Cathedral
Mass for Life
Tuesday, January 21
St. Martin's University, Marcus Pavilion in Lacey
Followed by the March at the State Capitol in Olympia.
Rite of Election


Chrism Mass
Thursday, April 10
St. James Cathedral

Quick Links


While the transition from Christmas to Ordinary Time brings a period of rest to pastoral liturgists, there are some wonderful liturgical celebrations to note during the month of January.


January 2 honored the Cappadocian Fathers: Basil the Great, his brother Gregory of Nyssa, and their good friend and fellow bishop, Gregory of Nazianzus. The subsequent three days invited us to remember three North American saints: Elizabeth Ann Seton (Jan 4), John Neumann (Jan 5, although this year coincided with the Epiphany of the Lord), and André Bessette (Jan 6).


January 17 is the obligatory memorial of Saint Anthony most well known through the writings of Saint Athanasius as the father of monasticism. While we should note and join with the nation in honoring the birth of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, January 20, prayers for the end of racial discrimination may fittingly be inserted into intercessory prayer for this day. The prayers for Mass may fittingly be taken from the Mass "For the Preservation of Peace and Justice" (Lectionary 887-891, Roman Missal, pg 1297 #30 A or B). On January 21 we remember Saint Agnes; January 24 and January 31 look to the centrality of both prayer and works on the memorials of Saint Frances de Sales and Saint John Bosco, respectively. Of special importance to all who study and hand on the Catholic faith is January 28, the memorial of a Dominican and Doctor of the Church, Saint Thomas Aquinas.


Unless any of these men or women are the patron of your parish or religious order there is little that needs to be done special for the celebration of Mass save using the propers when celebrating the Mass that day.



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In the midst of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity there is a good opportunity for "ecumenism in the trenches" on Tuesday, January 21 as, together with many other Christians, Catholics in the Archdiocese are invited to participate in the Mass for Life. All parishes should also honor a day of penance for violations to the dignity of the human person committed through acts of abortion and as a day of prayer for the full restoration of the legal right to life by celebrating a Mass "For the Preservation of Peace and Justice (Lectionary 887-891, Roman Missal pg 1297 #30A or B) with violet vestments or "For Giving Thanks to God for the Gift of Human Life" (Roman Missal pg 1321 #48/1A or B) with white vestments. This is an especially important occasion for including such prayer for the dignity of the human person in the Prayer of the Faithful at the Sunday Mass and (re)introducing your parish to the ongoing work of the pro-life actives of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and others. Additional special observances in the United States during the month of January include National Migration Week (January 5-11) and Catholic Schools Week (January 26-February 1) which include opportunities to include these special needs in our Sunday liturgies during those respective weeks.




The devotion with which the faithful participate in the memorial of Saint Blase with  blessing of throats discussed below is a great opportunity to use the liturgy as the source for catechesis about the healing ministry Christ entrusted to his Church which should not be passed up. February 5 and 10 are memorials of early women in the history of the Church, Agatha and Scholastica, respectively. The following day, February 11, is the memorial of Our Lady of Lourdes and, consequently, World Day of the Sick. This would be a great opportunity for your parish to celebrate the Anointing of the Sick during Mass. This is an opportunity for mystagogical reflection on the rite in which the faithful have either participated or been a part of the assembly should be seized upon. Though February 14 is certainly more well known as Valentine's Day, the Church honors on this day Saint Cyril and Saint Methodius considered apostles to the Slavs. February 22 is the Feast of the Chair of Peter that, upon first glance, may have the faithful rather perplexed about a liturgical day dedicated to a piece of furniture which is a great opportunity to highlight this unique Catholic feast and its signification of the importance the Petrine office in the plan of salvation.



Week of Prayer for Christian Unity that begins on January 18 and continues until the feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul on Tuesday, January 25 may require some special preparation. This is a good time to do ecumenical liturgies such as the Liturgy of the Hours at which all Christians can participate and even preside. Beginning the week with the Mass "For the Unity of Christians (Lectionary 811, Roman Missal pg 1272, #17 A or B), and invite members of neighboring Christian communities to come together. Even if your parish is unable to host or participate in ecumenical worship throughout the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, it would be appropriate for the Masses on Sunday, January 19, to include petitions for Christian unity (see RCIA 496 as a model) among the Prayer of the Faithful and to familiarize yourself and your parish by (re)reading Unitatis Redintegratio (the Second Vatican Council's Decree on Ecumenism), the Joint Declaration on the the Doctrine of Justification, and other documents of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.


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The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord (Lectionary 524, Roman Missal pg 815) recapitulates many of the themes of Christmas and marks the last vignette in the infancy of Jesus recorded in any of the gospels. Once known variously as Feast of the Meeting because of Jesus' meeting with the prophet and prophetess Simeon and Anna, the Purification of Mary according to the Jewish custom of a mother presenting herself at the Temple forty days after the birth of a son (Leviticus 12), and Candlemas because of the blessing of candles (used to bless throats the next day) that takes place at this Mass, it remains a central event in the life of the Lord as this is when he was enrolled among the assembly through his circumcision according to the covenant of Abraham. The gospel pericope proclaimed on this day gives us the Nunc Dimitiis ("Now dimiss [your servant]") the Gospel canticle sung each day at Night Prayer (Compline). The Feast of the Presentation is therefore a good opportunity to introduce the assembly to the celebration of Night Prayer and encourage them to do so in their own prayer life. Both because of its brevity and also because Night Prayer currently consists in only a one-week cycle (as compared to the four-week Psalter of the other offices) it is comparatively easy to share with the faithful and recent aids, facilitate doing so. In order to prepare for the blessingblessing of the candles at the Mass (given in the Roman Missal) set small congregation candles in baskets on a table placed at the door to the church and invite the faithful to remain in the Narthex for the procession.


Following the blessing of the candles they should be lit using a taper or candle-lighter itself lit from the Paschal Candle following which the faithful and the ministers enter the church to dispel the darkness and be a light of revelation. Historically all the candles to be used in the church in a given year were blessed at this time.


In memory of Saint Blaise, whose optional Memorial is  February 3, the Blessing of Throats may be given by a priest deacon, or lay minister who follows the rites and prayers designated for a lay minister. During Mass, the blessing follows the homily and Universal Prayer, or, for pastoral reasons, it may take the place of the final blessing of the Mass. Outside Mass, it is preceded by a brief celebration of the Word. If, for pastoral reasons, each individal cannot be blessed in the usual manner, a priest or deacon may give the blessing to all by extending his hands, without crossed candles, over the people while saying the prayer of blessing; a lay minister always says the prayer without making the sign of the cross. See Book of Blessings 1622-1655 for the complete rite. The formula of blessing is:


Through the intercession of Saint Blase,

bishop and martyr,

may God deliver you from every disease

of the throat and from every other illness:

in the name of the Father, and of the Son, +
and of the Holy Spirit.


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This interval of green time sandwiched between the previous gold (or white) season of Christmas and the coming months of Lenten purple - which of course gives rise to the traditional three colors of carnival that begins after Epiphany and runs until Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday) on the eve of Ash Wednesday - is also time to make proximate preparations for Lent and Easter.


Now may be the time to sit down with your Liturgy Committee and (re)read the 1988 "Circular Letter Concerning the Preparation and Celebration of the Easter Feasts," Paschale Solemnitatis (available in LTP's Liturgy Documents, Volume II).



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