“To veil or not to veil?”

Diocesan blog discusses current norms regarding covering statues and crosses during Passiontide

From the website of the Diocese of San Jose

Prior to the 1970 revision of the Roman Missal (Sacramentary), crosses and images were covered with veils during Passiontide, which is the last two weeks of Lent, starting from the end of the Mass for Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent. Crosses remained covered until the adoration of the cross at the Good Friday liturgy, and images were uncovered at the beginning of the Gloria at the Easter Vigil.

After 1970, the practice was left up to the decision of each episcopal conference. (The bishops of each country make up that country’s episcopal conference. In the United States, our episcopal conference is called the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops or USCCB.) The rubric in the 1970 missal says that the practice “may be observed, if the episcopal conference decides.”

Since 1970 in the United States, the practice of veiling crosses and statues was not allowed since the USCCB had not voted on the issue. In their April 1995 newsletter, the United States Bishops’ Committee on the Liturgy said that “[i]ndividual parishes are not free to reinstate the practice on their own.” 

With the revision of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), the USCCB, in 2001, approved adaptations specific for the United States. One of these adaptations included a rubric that said: “In the Dioceses of the United States of America, crosses in the church may be covered from the conclusion of the Mass for Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent until the end of the celebration of the Lord’ Passion on Good Friday. Images in the church may be covered from the conclusion of the Mass for Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent until the beginning of the Easter Vigil.” The adaptation was later recognized by the Vatican.

This rubric, however, does not appear in the newly revised General Instruction of the Roman Missal because the Bishops determined that it was more appropriate as a rubric for the new Roman Missal included in the sections specific to the Fifth Week of Lent.

Therefore, if you go to the Roman Missal and turn to the section for the “Fifth Sunday of Lent,” you’ll find this rubric:
In the Dioceses of the United States, the practice of covering crosses and images throughout the church from this Sunday may be observed. Crosses remain covered until the end of the celebration of the Lord’s Passion on Good Friday, but images remain covered until the beginning of the Easter Vigil.

Note that the practice is not mandated by the United States Bishops but simply allowed. It is not an obligatory practice, and parishes that choose not to veil crosses or statues during Passiontide are certainly following liturgical law.

Also note that it is never allowed to veil crosses or statues throughout the entire season of Lent. (Nor is it allowed to empty the font of holy water during the season of Lent.) Crosses and statues may only be veiled during Passiontide — from the end of the Mass for the Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent to Good Friday (for the one main cross to be venerated) and the beginning of Easter Vigil for images.

The Circular Letter Concerning the Preparation and Celebration of the Easter Feasts provided by the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship in 1988 states that after the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday, “[i]t is fitting that any crosses in the church be covered with a red or purple veil, unless they have already been veiled on the Saturday before the fifth Sunday of Lent” (57).

Note that in the rubric concerning the veiling during Passiontide, there is no mention of color of veils. If you will be veiling statues and crosses during Passiontide, make it easier for yourself and your environment team, and use shades of purple or red that would complement well with your Triduum environment.

 

READER COMMENTS

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 3:51 AM By alberta
silly “catholics” they gave up all their beautiful traditions willingly.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 4:09 AM By Angelo AVP
One of the things I miss is the stripping of the Sanctuary after the Holy Thursday Mass until the Easter Vigil. When the Sanctuary was stripped there was a holy sense of loss, and a Pious sense of the Holiness of the Easter Tridium. Now this practice is still kept in my parish. But there is’nt much to strip from the Sanctuary anymore except for the Altar linen which is so scant it is’nt noticable. We have lost so much.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 5:51 AM By jt
My daughter’s parish has the large crucifix cover in a purprle covering , the first sunday of Lent. Interested in knowing if this is something parishes can decide, this is the Diocese of Orlando, FL.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 6:18 AM By Anthony
Thank you for the info! A parish close to work where I attend daily Mass has had the crucifix & statues covered since Ash Wednesday and with black material. Do I just keep quiet or mention to the pastor whom, from my experience, is not fond of suggestions or questions? In a way, it’s not a burning issue but it is sad to see the violation of something so small. If this rubric is difficult to follow, more important ones will likely be ignored as well. Both male & female had there “hands” washed on Holy Thursday last year!


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 6:21 AM By Gabriel Espinosa 
Why didn’t they just leave well enough alone from the beginning!?!?


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 7:30 AM By JMJ
It would be nice for all of the Roman Catholic Churches to cover the Cross and statues as they used to do, but, because we are brain-dead from lack of poor training for the past 40 years or so (I know all you wags will blame the Vatican II for this, but it is goes much deeper), the Bishops and Pastors should explain on why the coverings, and while they are doing this, they should also replace the Altar Rails and put the Tabernacle back in the middle where it belongs. Have a very Holy Lent and I can still use your prayers very much. +JMJ+


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 8:27 AM By Sharon Walder
In our parish the holy water is removed during lent, I don’t notice that in other parishes. What is the rule? Thank you.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 8:35 AM By Marie
Honorable Bishop McGrath, Thank you for clarifying when the statues and crosses are covered during Lent and also about the removal of Holy Water from the Holy Water font (and replaced with rocks) during Lent. God Bless you, Marie


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 8:35 AM By Bud 
Having been educated during the early 40s and 50s as well as being a server for Mass, I found the purple coverings on the statues and crosses on Passion Sunday to be quite a striking reminder of the approaching Holy Week. The unveiling of all of the statues at the singing of the “Gloria” also lent itself to the joy of Easter. I also miss the Tenebrae services during Holy Week. Making most rubrics of this type optional does nothing to illustrate unity of the church which we really need!


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 8:57 AM By Jason
Gabriel Espinosa said, “Why didn’t they just leave well enough alone from the beginning!?!? ” Excellent question Gabriel. Modernists are full of themselves. They think they know better than their forebears and so are entitled to tinker and remake everything in their own image, even the liturgy itself.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:05 AM By tom
re:alberta We didn’t give them up, they were stolen from us by our own fathers and shepherds.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:19 AM By Ray
Gabriel Espinosa: You have it right. Need to go back to square one and stay there.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:29 AM By greyghost
The Church has really washed out tradition. Clearly, they are going through their own Reformation. I hope there are people left in the pews when they arrive at their destination.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:34 AM By Dana
JMJ, I’ll put you on my prayer list!


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:44 AM By kateri
Problem solved. We have no statues to cover. They’ve all been ripped out.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:45 AM By Thomas Edward Miles
Bring back this wonderful tradition, I love it!!


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:45 AM By shaji 
It is nice to know the fact, but one this is it necessary to give options to a tradition which emotionally and spiritually is good.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:01 AM By RR
JMJ: What is “wags?”


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:13 AM By Jay S.
At my parish there is a giant statue of the Ascending Christ behind the altar with his hands raised up above His head. A beautiful statue, to be sure, but sadly out of place as there is no crucifix there (the small metallic crucifix on the processional cross fills this requirement, I guess…). Accordingly, the sense of the sacrificial aspect of the Holy Mass is diminished because of this. Thankfully though, this huge statue is covered up with a large purple linen cloth during Lent.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:19 AM By pete
Overall, this is a good pushback from the iconoclasm of the post Vat II, EXCEPT note the FLAW: the OPTION to do it or not. This means practically that the practice is neither that of immemorable custom which has the force of law nor or law itself. In practice it means a DISUNITY of a practice from an ancient and distinctive rubric of the Roman Church. The Diocese of SJ seems to leave it up to the local pastor.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:35 AM By keithp
Sharon — No. Holy Water should not be removed from the fonts. We desperately need the sacramental. I’ll attempt to attach the info from a letter from CDWDS. OTH, it may be that your Sacristan got busy and did not have time to fill up the fonts…. “This Congregation for Divine Worship has received your letter sent by fax in which you ask whether it is in accord with liturgical law to remove the Holy Water from the fonts for the duration of the season of Lent. This Dicastery is able to respond that the removing of Holy Water from the fonts during the season of Lent is not permitted, in particular, for two reasons: 1. The liturgical legislation in force does not foresee this innovation, which in addition to being praeter legem is contrary to a balanced understanding of the season of Lent, which though truly being a season of penance, is also a season rich in the symbolism of water and baptism, constantly evoked in liturgical texts. 2. The encouragement of the Church that the faithful avail themselves frequently of the [sic] of her sacraments and sacramentals is to be understood to apply also to the season of Lent. The “fast” and “abstinence” which the faithful embrace in this season does not extend to abstaining from the sacraments or sacramentals of the Church. The practice of the Church has been to empty the Holy Water fonts on the days of the Sacred Triduum in preparation of the blessing of the water at the Easter Vigil, and it corresponds to those days on which the Eucharist is not celebrated (i.e., Good Friday and Holy Saturday). Hoping that this resolves the question and with every good wish and kind regard, I am, Sincerely yours in Christ, [signed] Mons. Mario Marini [Later, the Secretary of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, now with God.] Undersecretary”


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 11:21 AM By JLS
“wag” is swag but without an attitude.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 12:07 PM By Seraph
Removing Holy Water during Lent is one of the stupidest things done by parishes. It’s the time of the year that you actually need it more for the graces and protection given during this time of repentance and temptation. Lent is a penitential season and you need Holy Water. It’s a no brainer.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 12:14 PM By MacDonald
Wow — talk about confusing! I think I’ll just cover my own head with a puple cloth so I can’t see all the chaos going on.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 12:25 PM By Seraph
Anthony, You should mention it to your pastor. What he is doing is abuse, because the Church does not allow it. You should mention it to the bishop if he gives a negative response. The bishops should always be alerted to the nonsense and abuses of pastors. There is a plenary indulgence given to the faithful who any Friday in the season of Lent piously recite the prayer En ego, o bone et dulcissime Iesu, before an image of the Crucified Jesus Christ after communion. It will be difficult for people to do this when the crucifix is covered up in in the churches.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 2:42 PM By MG
so confusing to read that I lost interest. I am so happy that we belong to the all Latin Mass with the FSSP priestly fraternity of priests. I feel comforted by the Mass of my childhood. It is the same wonderful Mass I attended and the priests know exactly what they are doing. mg


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 4:09 PM By Charlie
In a lot of parishes there are no statues let alone crucifixes to ‘cover up’.But that aside I always considered this to be a bit showy with no real purpose save the people selling the cloth made some money.Surely more important actions such as benediction,rosary,stations of the Cross,availability of confessions etc are for more important than covering up statues.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 5:52 PM By Chuck
By making the changes….stopping the covering of statues, etc. ,allowing the old rules to be messed with, they destroyed one of the most powerful teaching opportunities to children in the liturgical calendar. Then they wonder why we have lost ten generations of kids who are wishy washy on the faith. They got rid of the wonder and awe. When they pulled off the purple you knew HE had risen!!!!!


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 6:16 PM By Bob One
We have hundreds of thousands of people going to bed hungry every night, kids being shot in school and drive by shootings. Let’s keep our eyes on the ball, folks. Covered statues has an importance of .001 on a scale of 1-1000.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 6:33 PM By k
Seraph, you are correct, but you can use your rosary or most of the prayerbooks that contain that prayer have a picture of a crucifix printed on the page.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 7:20 PM By Anne
In our church in Gonzales, Louisiana, the crucifix is taken down during Lent. Standing on the altar are 3 huge wooden crosses for Calvary. The holy water has been removed from all fonts. On Holy Thursday, we no longer have the priest washing the congregation’s feet. He has the congregation come up and wash each others feet. Do the priests now have an alternative to let the congregation wash each others’ feet?


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 7:41 PM By Jason
Bob One have you completely missed the last 50 years? You think, just maybe, that the Catholic Church watering down the faith and all but eliminating catechesis, surrendering Her identity and tradition to the world after that council might have just a wee bit to do with the decayed state of what’s left of our culture?


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 9:16 PM By Angelo AVP
Just when I thought all the silliness was confined to my own parish. I have enjoyed this evening reading what real Catholics have to say. BTW Black and Purple are the traditional colors for covering the statues during Passiontide, which begins the Sunday before Palm Sunday. Why Red I don’t know. Maybe just for the sake of adding another change.


Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:28 PM By JLS
All the messing with the symbols does nothing but turn matters into sillyness. It is not only the effeminization of America but the childishness of it that is being promoted by fools.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 5:24 AM By JudeThom
The option to do or not to do most often leads to abolishing the tradition. Watering down the faith, dumbing down tradition, making the faith more Protestant, eliminating, eliminating, scaling down….in the end if makes for a hybrid Catholic-Protestant Church. I udnerstand now why so many people are going into Orthodoxy.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 6:38 AM By Canisius
Bob One the poor will always be with us, and you as a liberal will use them as an excuse not to address any other issue in the Church especially fixing the errors of the failed Vatican 2 council


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 8:58 AM By BobOne
No Jason, I don’t think that the council is responsible for the decline in membership. That was started long before. If anything, the council stemmed it for a while. The reason we are losing membership, as are all of the traditional/liturgical protestant churches, is that we are less relevant to the people who are growing up today. If 98% of Catholic women of child bearing age use the pill, how relevant is the church? If the percentage of Catholic women having abortions is the same as the population at large, how relevant is the church to them? Don’t misunderstand me, I think the teachings of the church are correct, but they are just irrelevant to a lot of people. Our culture says that women are equal to men in their career aspirations. But we say no, you cannot be a deacon or priest. How relevant are we to those who want to be deacons or priest? They go to a denomination that will allow them to reach their goals. Saying “good riddance” isn’t the answer either. That just makes us more irrelevant. We should take a look at what the growing churches are offering that attracts people to Christianity. They may have some strategies that we could adopt.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 9:40 AM By Canisius
@ Bob One saying good riddance to lies is always an option. If 98 percent of Catholic women using birth control (probably a false number) should the Church change for those committing sin. If you measure relevance as the world measures it than you are already lost. Hate to break it to Bob but its the conservative/traditional orders and parishes that are filled on sunday morning not the the liberal social justice ones. The very last thing the Church needs to do is to become some kind of feel good association to stroke the fragile egos of their liberal members


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 9:58 AM By JLS
“Smaller, holier Church”, Bob One. Your ideas are great for a shopping mall religion, though.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 10:06 AM By rosaryfixer
BoBOne: Are we really Catholics so we can pick and choose what doctrines and dogmas and practices we want to observe? If you still do not know why the Lord did not choose women to be priests and deacons, hopefully you will find some orthodox resources online or can join an RCIA class at your parish. Women and men are equally responsible to follow Christ to the Cross. If Catholics are going elsewhere, it shows a very big lack of education on the part of the clergy and other teachers to inform the consciences of Catholics. BTW, 98% of Catholic women have not used the pill and for good reason: not only is it an abortifacient, it is also classified as a carcinogen. Wonder why women are getting breast cancer in record numbers? The women surveyed for this 98% number were NOT practicing Catholics, but were Catholic in name only, much like many of our “Catholic” politicians and other “cafeteria Catholics.” We do not go to heaven by following our “culture,” but by following Christ, who gave us the most complete map to heaven in the Catholic Faith. Other denominations have incomplete maps. Personally I’d like one that has everything on it so I can reach my destination. And that means abiding by the “stop signs, cautions, bridge out,” etc. etc.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 10:08 AM By Ginny
So,so sad….Our church the One True Church, has messed with our minds so much, that most of us (craddle Catholics) really don’t know what is the right way, to adorn our Church in lent anymore…I long for the old customs, of genuflecting and kissing the cross (feet of Jesus) on Good Friday.That had a very devout meaning to me…..Some parishes are more devout in Lent, where others send the Priest away for Lenten Missions, and the Congregation is left to find their own Spirituality….


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 10:30 AM By k
BobOne, the growing churches are Evangelical and Fundamentalist Christian, the LDS church, and Jehovah’s Witnesses. What they offer is surety. They are absolutist is their doctrines, which the Catholic Church used to be. Also-they evangelize because they have strict doctrines which say who are saved and who are not. The Catholic Church also used to be like that. The Catholic Church actually is growing also but some believe it is because of immigration.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 12:53 PM By Charles
Nothing against the writer of the article’s talent; however I find it interesting to read: “Prior to the 1970 revision of the Roman Missal (Sacramentary), crosses and images were covered with veils during Passiontide, . . ” In other words, it was tradition and Catholic (we were all One) to do so! Then the article says: “After 1970, the practice was left up to the decision of each episcopal conference”. A little further in the article it says: ” Since 1970 in the United States, the practice of veiling crosses and statues was not allowed since the USCCB had not voted on the issue”. That’s odd, in reality there was a hidden unpublished vote by the USCCB’s action or in-action where they essentially voted to stop the Catholic traditional practice of veiling the crosses and statues! Some would think by the precedent of centuries of tradition, the default would have been to keep the crosses and statues veiled, wouldn’t you think? Sorry, I guess I am to much of an old foggie or considered stupid. The article went on to say: “In their April 1995 newsletter, the United States Bishops’ Committee on the Liturgy said that “[i]ndividual parishes are not free to reinstate the practice on their own.” This only lends more to the disruption of tradition, in other words implementation of liberalism. Now they (USCCB) flip-flop: “In the Dioceses of the United States, the practice of covering crosses and images throughout the church from this Sunday may be observed”. Why? And why not make this traditional practice truly Catholic where we all as “One” practice it? May we all live a holy lent.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 9:26 PM By k
Canisius, you are correct that the figure 98 % of Catholic women use birth control is a false number. It is 98% of Catholic women of childbearing age with sexual experience have used a method of birth control at some time in thier lives. So, if they used it once or prior to becoming Catholic or whatever it would still count. I think the working number is 68% of Catholic women of childbearing age who have had any sexual experience (and this is women who identify themselves as Catholic not just those who actually attend Mass) are using birth control. Which is still really scandalous. Only 2% of Catholic women report using NFP. 11% use nothing. The number don’t add up to 100%. Info is from Washington Post Fact Checker.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 9:29 PM By k
A clergy member was overheard to say that some members of the clergy do not like things that are lay-driven. Some of them don’t like things that are hierarchy-driven. Maybe I should have posted this on the clerical narcisism thread.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 9:57 PM By agnes bolt
Taking communion in the hand is a sacrilege. One walks on Jesus sprinkled throughout the church. The priests & bishops are not aware of this sacrilege and foster it. Women dress indecently in the tightest pants; the men complain they cannot get away from these temptations even in church. Communion rails, a major cross with Christ on it, female head coverings, the priest & deacon only are the Eucharistic Ministers, not the lay people who have not washed their hands, which are not consecrated. A plate should catch all crumbs from the Eucharist and be used every time. The statutes should be covered during the passiontide and the homily should be thought provoking. The mass should be an example of the unity that Christ sought for his church.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 10:24 PM By JLS
These surveys are ridiculous. The first sex survey they ran at UCDavis, which was a ballot type survey, was packed by those who submitted forms with all sorts of phony data. Picture a group of college men sitting around drinking beer and conversing what to put down … “yeah, dude, last week uh fifteen hoz; top that”. And then picture the coeds sitting around studying, and chatting about what to put down on the forms, “Well, let’s see; if we say we do nothing in the dorms but sex, then it’ll drive the boys crazy; so let’s put that down”. Do those kids actually care about some official survey that some group of grad students conjured up? Or would they see it as a game to go hog wild on? A lying game to drive the revolution forward? So, yeah, I sure do believe the Washington Post survey team, yeah, right, they are unbiased and their data is unimpeachable.


Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 11:02 PM By Angelo AVP
For sure Vatican Council ll was in no way a failure. There were 2 failures after V2. One was the satanic inspired misinterpretations of V2. The other was the failure of us Traditionalists not speaking up in defense of the Truth. There are 2 sides to blame. Good thing, it is not too late for us Traditionalists to speak up in a strong manner.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 2:20 AM By Abeca Christian
Why are some men so easily tempted? agnes bolt do men really complain that they could not get away from those temptations? Wow I have never heard of that? Not from a church setting.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 2:48 AM By Edith
Agnes, although I always receive Holy Communion on the tongue, it is not a Sacrilege to receive in the hand. At the last Supper everyone ate from their own hands. Please do not make things up. Read the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition” to know your Faith. “….the Catechism has raised throughout the world, even among non-Christians, and confirms its purpose of being presented as a full, complete exposition of Catholic doctrine, enabling everyone to know what the Church professes, celebrates, lives, and prays in her daily life.” – Pope John Paul II (pg xiv). Not only liberals can be heretics. – In fact Martin Luther and John Calvin were very conservative.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 4:34 AM By PAUL
When are the Bishops all going to tell their flock that it violated GIRM for the people to mimic the Priest – raising their hands during the Lord’s Prayer, and holding hands, and giving the sign of Peace to those who do not sit near them. These actions are disruptive, distracting, and trying to appear holier than others. In addition, they are Protestant in origin. I like the Mass in my language because I think in English and not Latin, but the Bishops have an OBLIGATION to stop all abuses during the Mass whether it be OF or EF.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 4:41 AM By PETE
When reading any document as in the above article, including but not limited to GIRM please note the words “may”. “May” or “can” does not have the same meaning as “shall’ or “will”. Don’t try to correct your Priest when you have not read documentation (GIRM) carefully.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 7:02 AM By MacDonald
@ Agnes — Holy Communion in the hand a SACRILEGE? Are you serious? Jesus did place not little round Hosts on the tongues of his disciples at the last supper, nor does the Roman Catholic Church demand that we do so. Instead the Church teaches that one may receive the Eucharist in the hand or on the tongue. Some of the OTHER items you condemn are worthy of condemnation, but this practice is not. St. Cyril of Jerusalem (313-386) counsels the faithful to: “make a throne of your hands in which to receive the King.” It’s up to you, as the communicant, to decide which way to receive — but it’s not up to you to tell others how they may receive the Eucharistic Lord.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 7:17 AM By JLS
Edith, the Catechism is not a substitute for holiness. The Church grew vastly faster before any catechism was available, and when few people could read.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 8:34 AM By ssoldie
Oh! to return to the pre-crisis era,for there was right reason and faith,and now only confusion.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 9:07 AM By JoAnn
I wish we could all get together and do something to bring back the old traditional ways of the Catholic Church -the pre-modernist days and the politically-correctness- people say all the time change is good for the Church – if that’s true, then why doesn’t God ever change? He was, is, and always will be. He never changes. So if He never changes then why do we Catholics need to change – because everybody else is doing it? Why do we need to compare ourselves with what the non-Catholics are doing? It’s the last thing we should be doing – because we have the Real Presence, they don’t. What is there to compare?


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 10:57 AM By mary
Such gobbledegook. Talking in circles and in the end causing more confusion over who can and can’t drape the statues (if you have any) or crucifixes during Lent. We don’t even have a crucifix. We have a hanging Jesus (no cross) suspended on wires from the ceiling!


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 1:19 PM By Paul
The Church should make the three days of Triduum holy days of obligation.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 2:35 PM By P. Jey
I will repeat my comment and hope this time it will not be removed. We, the faithful need unity in Leadership so that we all know what we are doing. This is no joke now and not a laughing matter. We need unified leadership with everyone doing the same thing at the same time following the same rules, procedures and traditions. One Unified Church. Amen.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 3:44 PM By John
What statues, Images ? There are none left in Roman Catholic Churches along with Altar Rails, Votive Candles and other signs of Catholic Faith.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 6:16 PM By Bob One
P.Jey, of course you are kidding or just trying to raise a ruckess! You dont really mean that. You must be too young to remember what it was like in the old days.


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 6:42 PM By Abeca Christian
P. Jey in other words we need to be like minded in Christ. You are right bud!


Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 7:47 PM By k
My church has statues and images, votive candles. No altar rail because it was built after Vatican II.


Posted Friday, March 02, 2012 4:40 AM By P.Jay
Bob One: I do remember what it was like in the old days, I am 75 years old and that is why I say, we need to go back to a formal structure and prayer life generated from beautiful traditions led by a unified leadership. God Bless.


Posted Friday, March 02, 2012 6:22 AM By K
I wish our Parish would veil the statutes. I miss it!


Posted Friday, March 02, 2012 7:17 AM By Anita
This United States Conference of Catholic Bishops or USCCB. Are they in any way affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church that is over 2,000 years old. I really don’t see any similarity.


Posted Friday, March 02, 2012 10:02 AM By Abeca Christian
A small baptist church far far away has a huge painting of Jesus resurrected, during this season they veil the painting until Easter Sunday to show Jesus resurrected!


Posted Friday, March 02, 2012 1:21 PM By Karen
In our parish there is a priest who carries a styrofoam cup with him during mass and at the end of mass he tosses what is left in the cup into the Holy Water font. Please pray for him. Our Lady of Medjugorje implores us to pray for our Shepards.


Posted Friday, March 02, 2012 1:40 PM By Marilyn
What bugs me most about my Church in Omaha Nebraska is all the talking in church. I go to church to pray…IF I CAN (with all the talking going on


Posted Saturday, March 03, 2012 2:20 PM By Anne T.
Thank you, Bishop Mc Grath for clarifying this.


Posted Saturday, March 03, 2012 5:19 PM By Anne T.
My goodness, Karen, does he really do such a sacrilegious thing? If he does that is a real abuse and needs to be reported. I will pray for him and you. He might not even have valid intentions when he serves Mass, and his Mass might be invalid.


Posted Monday, March 12, 2012 5:59 PM By James
Marilyn, Take courage and visit Mater Dei Roman Catholic Church in Omaha. You’ll be able to concentrate on holy mass prayers if you can get over the reverence and beauty of the Tridentine Latin Mass. May God bless you this holy lenten season.


Posted Friday, March 23, 2012 8:32 AM By Mary Ann
i wonder how many of the commenters are catechists, sacristans, RCIA participants. how many know that these ‘regulations’ are availbale onthe internet that they are using, can be copied and hung in your sacristry. All the draperies in hte world are not going to change the fact that Jesus Christ will come to judge all of us -and he won’t ask for your contribution.

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  1. Jann Maclean says:

    I feel as if I stepped into the 11th century. St. Helena’s parish has everything covered even in the entrance. We all know it is Lent. Revisit Vatican II as far as I know that until there is a Vatican III we are to speak in the vernacular NO Latin! I never learned Latin I memorized it. I want my children and grandchildren to understand what the are saying. These rituals have lost there place in contemporary society. We are not impressed with overstatements. It pulls people away when we see the elaborate emphasis. Listen and watch our Pope Francis; focus on simplicity on the needs of people. Jesus was born in a stable and died on the cross. That is simplicity. That should be the focus.

    • Ann Malley says:

      If you only memorized with regard to the mass, Jann Maclean, then that was your fault not the fault of the Latin Mass. And please, while you may underestimate the capacity or desire of your children/grandchildren, others feel that their children and grandchildren are more than capable of rising to the occasion when confronted with ritual. As in wanting to delve deeper, learn, reverence and understand their meanings.

      In other words, have a simple Faith, yes, but do not rob yourself or others of the intense beauty and culture inherent in traditional Catholic practice. While a happy meal may be convenient at times, it hardly represents the fullness of the dining experience. I’ve no doubt even Pope Francis understands the expediency of time and place.

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