Who Reads Bidding Prayers?

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Who Reads Bidding Prayers?

According to the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), the official guide for celebrating Mass in the Roman Catholic Church, there are specific guidelines for who should read the bidding prayers, also known as the Prayer of the Faithful or General Intercessions. The GIRM provides clear direction on this matter:

  • The Deacon: Primarily, it is the deacon’s role to announce the intentions of the General Intercessions. As an ordained minister, the deacon serves as a link between the clergy and the laity, making him particularly suited for this task.
  • A Cantor: In some celebrations, especially those with more elaborate music, a cantor may be asked to announce the intentions.
  • A Reader: The GIRM also allows for a designated reader to proclaim the intentions, enabling direct participation of the laity in the liturgy.
  • One of the Lay Faithful: The document specifically mentions that “one of the lay faithful” may be called upon to read the intentions, emphasizing the participatory nature of these prayers.

The GIRM stipulates that the intentions should be announced from the ambo or another suitable place. Whoever is assigned to read the intentions should remain in place until the Priest Celebrant has completed the concluding prayer.

It’s important to note that the Priest Celebrant has a specific role in the Prayer of the Faithful. He introduces the prayer with a brief exhortation, inviting the faithful to pray, and he concludes it with an oration.

The GIRM also provides guidance on how the intentions should be composed and delivered. They should be sober, composed with wise liberty and in few words, and expressive of the prayer of the entire community. This guidance helps ensure that regardless of who reads the intentions, they truly represent the collective prayer of the assembled faithful.

In all cases, the reading of the bidding prayers is meant to engage the entire congregation in praying for the needs of the Church, the world, and the local community. The reader, whether deacon, cantor, or lay person, serves as a voice for all, helping to unite the congregation in this important act of communal intercession.

Sources:

General Instructions of the Roman Missal

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