Catholics like to use religious articles. Medals, crucifixes, statues,
pictures, scapulars, rosaries, and other items made from common elements
may be set aside for religious use. They are usually obtained from dealers
of church goods, but they may also be fashioned at home by hand. Some religious
articles are hung on the wall at home, at school, or at work. Others are
worn beneath or on top of clothing. It is customary for such articles to
be blessed by a deacon or a priest.
articles can be a means of evangelization. They depict a symbol of the
faith that Catholics hold. They prompt discussion about biblical figures
and events as well as the holy people who have kept the faith throughout
history. Many Catholics carry religious articles with them as a reminder
of God’s presence or to seek divine protection. A blessing sets the articles
apart for this sacred purpose.
blessing of religious articles may take place during liturgical prayer.
People bring articles with them to church, where the celebrant introduces
the service. A Scripture reading is proclaimed. For example, in Paul’s
Second Letter to the Corinthians, he says, “All of us, gazing with unveiled
face on the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image
from glory to glory, as from the Lord who is the Spirit” (cf. 3:17b—4:2).
Intercessions are made, and the celebrant concludes with a blessing over
the objects and the people.
the priest or deacon may say a very short formula apart from a liturgical
service: “May this (name of article) and the one who uses it be
blessed, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, + and of the Holy Spirit.”
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This bulletin insert originally appeared in Ministry
& Liturgy, a pastoral planning resource used by the worship leaders
in your parish as an aid for better liturgy. Copyright © 2006, Resource
Publications, Inc. 160 E. Virginia St. #290, San Jose, CA 95112, (408)
286-8505. This article may not be reproduced in any form without permission
from the publisher. For permission e-mail
Turner, pastor of St. Munchin Parish in Cameron, MO, holds a doctorate
in sacramental theology from Sant' Anselmo University in Rome.
Comment online at ML Current Issue
Discussion. Clip art by Helen St. Paul.