Wednesday, June 22, 2011

How to Dispose of Old Copies of the Sacramentary - And Bless the Revised Roman Missal

In the March-April edition of the USCCB Committee on Divine Worship NEWSLETTER, American bishops offer guidelines for disposing of liturgical books that have been updated.

The the Book of Blessings, paragraph number 1343, says that the Roman Missal, the Lectionary, and other ritual books are to be blessed using the blessing texts, Order for the Blessing of Articles for Liturgical Use, paragraph numbers 1341-1359.

Whether a liturgical book was previously blessed or not, we should treat it with respect as we dispose of it.  Old liturgical books may be buried on the parish grounds or in the parish cemetery.  Another option is to burn the book first but bury the ashes in an appropriate place on the church grounds or cemetery.  One copy of the present Sacramentary may be placed in a parish archive or liturgical library.

The new copy of the revised Roman Missal is to be used for the first time, November 27, 2011, the First Sunday of Advent.  The pastor should bless the new copy with the blessing from the Book of Blessings, 1341-1359.  The USCCB Committee on Divine Worship suggests that the blessing "could take place during a Mass on the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King, at the last weekday Mass prior to the First Sunday of Advent, or outside Mass at a separate gathering of liturgical ministers or other parish leaders."

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