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Exploring the Mass- No. 7 – Sunday Renewal of Baptism

History:

Till recently a rite known as the Asperges (sprinkling) was celebrated before the principal Mass on Sunday. The word comes from Psalm 51:9: “Cleanse me of sin with hyssop, that I may be purified.” Verses of the psalm were sung while the priest walked through the church and sprinkled holy water over the people. During paschal time the Asperges was replaced by the Vidi Aquam (living water), a text based on Exekiel 47: 1,8,9: “I saw water flowing out from beneath the threshold of the temple.”

General Instruction of the Roman Missal (The Church’s Textbook)

As an alternative to the penitential rite at all Sunday Masses, the blessing and sprinkling of the people with the holy water may be substituted for the more usual penitential rite. This revised rite of sprinkling is no longer restricted to the principal Mass or to parish churches but may be used “at all Sunday Masses, even those anticipated on Saturday evening, in all churches and oratories.”

Reflection:

The sprinkling with water is a visual reminder of baptism and the unique character of Sunday. through the sacraments of Christian initiation we die, are buried and rise again with Christ: we thereby share in Christ’s victory over sin and death. Every Sunday is a paschal feast celebrating the memorial of the Lord’s Resurrection whch is the taproot of all reconciliation.

Scripture:  Exodus 14: 1-30,  Matthew 3: 13-17, Matthew 28: 19-20

Questions for Reflection:

1.  How do I ask for renewal of my Baptism?

2. What is that renewal of my Baptismal promises going to mean in my life ( a good thing to remember at the renewal of Baptismal Vows at Baptisms and Easter celebrations?

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