Communion of All Believers
As Catholics we believe in the Communion of Saints. This is a belief that all the baptized are part of one family whether living or deceased. How do we demonstrate that in practical ways in our parishes? Many parishes include in the bulletin the names of those who are sick or who have died. We pray for them during each liturgy. We could add to that the names of those who have celebrated the Sacrament of Matrimony and those who have joined our parish family through the Sacrament of Baptism.
Many parishes have bulletin boards showing pictures of those who are preparing to receive the sacraments of initiation through the RCIA, or even of those who are preparing for First Communion or Confirmation. It is a way of calling to mind our responsibility for one another, those who have gone before us in death as well as those who try to witness their faith through preparation or celebration of the sacraments, those who join us in our journey through the Sacrament of Baptism. Wedding pictures of those recently married could also be posted. These postings come with an invitation to encourage and support through prayer those who are listed or pictured.
The names (best with pictures) can be posted in the church vestibule, on outdoor bulletin boards, in the parish office, or on the website. For those preparing to celebrate the sacraments, names can be made available on individual pieces of paper so that people can keep them as a reminder to pray for these individuals during their sacramental preparation time. The papers can be available near the entrances to the church building or in other frequently accessed locations.
What are some practices in your parish that you would like to share?
If you would like to explore this topic in
your parish, the book FaithDays!,
available in printed or electronic format, ( FaithDays!
*E-Book*), has a section on “Communion of Saints”
as one of the topics of its pre-planned, intergenerational parish-wide
formation sessions. Note: There are a very limited number of copies of
the printed edition available before it goes out of print.
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