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The Office of Liturgy has recently received a number of questions concerning the liturgies of Lent. The most common of these queries will be addressed in this issue of the Liturgy Update.
Prayers over the People in the Lenten Season
A new feature of the third edition of the Roman Missal is the optional oratio super populum on weekdays in Lent. Many of these prayers are quite ancient, and have their origins in the sacramentaries of the 6th-8th centuries. Inasmuch as they are new to the reformed Roman Missal, the sequence for their use at the conclusion of Mass is provided below as a reference:
• Greeting (“The Lord be with you”) with response
• Invitation “Bow down for the blessing”
• Prayer over the people with hands outstretched
• Conclusion “And may the blessing of almighty God, the Father, and the Son, ✠ and the Holy Spirit, come down on you and remain with you forever.”