Monday, March 5, 2012

Mystagogy Monday: A Moving Preface and Prayer after Communion

A little mystagogical reflection on this Monday of the Second Week of Lent. Because of my various travails over the past few weeks, yesterday was the first time I attended Mass this Lent. I was certainly ready and open to whatever the Lord had in store.

First of all, it was wonderful to be back at Saint James after several weeks away.

My pastor obviously prepared the preface and chanted it beautifully.  Here is the text:

It is truly right and just, our duty and our salvation,
always and everywhere to give you thanks,
Lord, holy Father, almighty and eternal God,
through Christ our Lord.
For after he had told the disciples of his coming Death,
on the holy mountain he manifested to them his glory,
to show, even by the testimony of the law and the prophets,
that the Passion leads to the glory of the Resurrection.
And so, with the Powers of heaven,
we worship you constantly on earth,
and before your majesty we acclaim: Holy . . .

This is one of those instances where the preface really captured me. Perhaps it is due to the fact that it is rather brief and the chant, well-prepared, helped convey the meaning. When I look at the text now, outside of the context of liturgy, it looks a little clunky, especially where it says "on the holy mountain he manifested to them his glory." Just not the same sentence structure we use in everyday speech. I remember as a kid hearing my parents poking fun at some of my French-Canadian relatives, who said things like "Throw over the fence to me the baseball." This sentence in the preface sounds a little like that to me. But, maybe it's because I am getting used to the structure, but it was quite inspiring yesterday.

I also was moved by the Prayer after Communion:

As we receive these glorious mysteries,
we make thanksgiving to you, O Lord,
for allowing us while still on earth
to be partakers even now of the things of heaven.
Through Christ our Lord.

I have to admit being a little confused at the beginning of the prayer, because "glorious mysteries" sounded like we had just prayed the Rosary, but the "partaker even now of the things of heaven" really touched me. I know that what we receive and celebrate in the Eucharist is but a tiny glimpse, a small taste, of the things to come. This prayer strengthened that conviction in me.

What was your experience of these prayers yesterday?

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.


Anonymous said...

Your comments on the Words found in differnt parts of the Eucharistic celebration yesterday were interesting. To me the most important words , very simple ones, were found in the Gospel "Listen to Him" No useless verbiage, no mix up of sentences, just simplicity that we very often forget.. "Listen to Him' Love one another Peace be with you etc etc.

jdonliturgy said...

These are indeed beautiful prayers and my pastor delivered them very well actually.. but I admit they are much better on paper than when proclaimed. The syntax is so convoluted they are hard to comprehend well when spoken. I hate to have to go to back to holding a missalette so that I don't miss anything, but I am considering it.

lapetiteecosse said...

I want to send an e-mail to Doctor Jerry. Is there an e-mail address I can use please?

Jerry Galipeau, D. Min. said...

Lapetiteecosse, my e-mail address is