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Catholic Northwest Progress
Seattle, Washington
August 24, 1962     Catholic Northwest Progress
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August 24, 1962

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/&gt;---THE "3 Frlda' ,.' 24, 1962 Bible Devotion-Listening to the Word of God By Ray Ruppert, Editor, Our T'm3es, Yaklma any of the restless, contemporary cur- rents reshaping the eternal shoreline between the Church and world eddied about the altar of the North American Liturgical Week inSeattle Monday evening. The occasion was a dem- onstration of a Bible read- ing devotion, a new flowering from old liturgical roots, present- ed-by Rev. Joseph M. Connolly and a team of laymen from Bal- timore, Md. Sensed in the devotion were these trends: increased study of the Bible, greater understanding of the community nature of wor- sh.p, more use of laymen in the ritual of the Church, better un- derstanding of liturgy as the pub- lic worship of the Church and, perhaps, another arm reached out to separated Christians. Assisting Father Connolly Mon- day evening were Matthew Fral- ing, as cantor, and Thomas Ross and Charles Cephas, readers, all from Father Connolly's parish, St. Gregory the Great. The three young laymen made it to Seattle under some difficulty; their au- tomobile broke down in Bis- marck, N.D. and they came on by bus. The structure of the Bible read- ing devotion consists of seven parts: !. The readings. There are nor- mally three readings: One from the Old Testament, an Epistle and a Gospel, read by the lay readers. 2. The homily. Delivered by the celebrant, the homily is a brief opening up of the reading for better understanding by the peo- ple. It is the link which binds the different readings together. 3. The ps a im. The psalm is chanted by the choir or soloed by the leader of song. The people respond by chanting a refrain. The meditative psalm provides a setting in which the hustle and b u s t I e of everyday activity is calmed. 4. The prayer. This consists of the people's prayer, which may be of directed silence, and the celebrant's prayer. 5. The action. The message of the readings is incarnated into some rite or customary practice. The action on Monday evening was the bringing in of the metro- politan (archbishop's) cross in procession followed by an explan- ation to elicit an act of faith from the people. 6. The final blessing. 7. The processions. The en- trance procession gives promi- nence to the Bible and ends with the censing of theBible. Father Connolly explained that a Bible devotion might be formed around readings about baptism and the action would then be a renewal of baptismal vows. The devotion which "burst into this country in 19,t8" is filling in the place formerly held by tra- ditional parish devotions such as the r o s a r y-sermon-benediction formula or novenas, Father Con- holly said. He theorized that "the bottom had fallen out of the mar- ket" for these customary devo- tions and a new form of devotion, for use outside of Mass, was needed. He offered no substantial rea- son why the old devotions had lost their appeal but suggested, perhaps, "the people have been educated beyond this." But the Bible reading or Bible vigil fills the gap because it reaches all age levels and all levels of parish life and, Father Connolly declared, "in this sense covers the waterfront." He said, too, it has been found to be a tremendous teaching device. Agreeing that it is a new form of devotion, he emphasized that it finds its roots in the ancient law of the liturgy and follows the format of God speaking to the people and the people responding with song, prayer and action. He suggested, too, that a form CONGREGATIONAL SINGING formed an integral part of Father Joseph P. Connolly's Mon- day evening Bible devotion. A young Negro, Matthew Fraling, from Baltimore is pictured above leading a group in a hymn. Mr. Fraling is a convert to Catholicism. of the Bible vigil could be used in the home with the father of the family leading the devotion. The Bible reading devotion had its beginning in Europe and reached the United States about 1948, he said. Since then, it has spread across the country and shows promise of even greater growth. Any Protestant who happened in on a Bible vigil would "feel right at home," Father Connolly said, building one more bridge, .perhaps, to greater understand- mg. FATHER JOSEPH P. CONNOLLY incenses the Gospel book contain;rig the Word of God at a Bible ceremony in the World's Fair Arena. Father Coma oily is from Balt;,nore, Md. Alter ttiumphi at the Paris Festival ol #affons , in ,, oruc=llh " h -- ! I I ,1 '. ./..-. COMPANY of 75 Bursting with .,,.. ., --exnloding il ,-::, .. t..<;)t IPiaeat ..el :iU//. t, feo,e= t J ,   . I durim] their I " - - t t ".t I Meicol - ...:.;:#   , . , ;:'i'i!i!', " " World's Fair Opera House AUGUST 27 thru SEPTEMBER 1 Nightly at 8:30 Matinees Wed. & Sat. at 2:30 $4.50---$3.75--$3.00S2.25 I Fair Adm;ss;on Hot Required) TICKETS: Sherman Clay, 1624 4th Ave.; Fa;r Box Office, 225 Mercer. MA 2-5856. Mail Orders: Box 9000 O A, SeaHle 9, Washington.