Catechesis and a Collect: Preparing the New Translation of the Missal

Authored by Eileen Grant in Issue #32.1 of The Sower

A catechist is not merely a teacher or instructor in the modern sense; he or she is one who makes another hear, literally ‘makes the ears ring’. Part of each catechetical session is, through proclamation, letting the catechumens or candidates hear the Word of the Lord echoing down through the Tradition of the Church. Tradition is ‘that which is handed down’, that which has been gathered into the Church’s treasury of doctrine and prayer over 2000 years. This is why the words of St Cyril of Jerusalem, St Ambrose, St John Chrysostom still ring out with such clarity centuries after they were proclaimed to catechumens in the Early Church.

A catechist’s task, then, is to hand on only the accumulated wisdom of the Church and this includes her rich heritage of liturgy, whereby we listen to God our Father and enter into dialogue with Him.

In anticipation of a new English translation of the Missal next year, this is an area that needs attention and proclamation. The prayers of the Mass form a great spiritual resource for catechesis and it is easy to miss some of the riches contained in the Mass that take up only a few seconds - before moving on to what may seem the more ‘important’ parts. The Collects, or Opening Prayers, are especially vital in that they set the tone, introduce the theme, of the whole Mass of the day. The Collect is intended to gather up, to ‘collect’ the prayerful thoughts of the people as they prepare to meet the Lord in word and sacrament; we cannot do that adequately unless we understand and appreciate what the Collect is saying on our behalf. It is for this reason that catechesis on these prayers will not only be helpful but will form an important function in handing on the Tradition of the Church.

The rest of this online article is available for current subscribers.

Start your subscription today!


This article is from The Sower and may be copied for catechetical purposes only. It may not be reprinted in another published work without the permission of Maryvale Institute. Contact sower@maryvale.ac.uk

Articles from the Most Recent Issue

Editor's Reflections: Kerygmatic Catechesis and the New Directory
By Dr. James Pauley
Free The much-anticipated Directory for Catechesis is finally here! So many of us involved in the work of catechetical renewal have eagerly awaited its publication. This directory is the third of its kind, following 1971 and 1997 directories that each proposed a vision for catechesis intended to prepare Catholics to live in the modern world as well-... Read more
An Invitation to a Faithful, Dynamic Renewal of Catechesis
By Jem Sullivan
Free This article explores c hapters 1-2 of the new Directory for Catechesis. The publication of a Directory for Catechesis by the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization could not have arrived at a more providential moment as the universal Church seeks a renewal of Christian faith in local churches struggling through the effects... Read more
Becoming Windows for the Light of the Living God
By Brad Bursa
This article explores chapters 3-4 of the Directory for Catechesis. O ne could liken c hapters t hree (The Catechist) and f our (The Formation of Catechists) of the new Directory for Catechesis to a meditation on windows and how they are made. Identity and Vocation of the Catechist In the early Church, those who followed the Way were often called... Read more

Pages

Watch Tutorial Videos

We've put together several quick and easy tutorial videos to show you how to use this website.

Watch Now