The Office of Worship fosters the full, conscious and active participation of the faithful in the celebration of liturgy.
News from the Office of Worship
Rite of Election & Call to Continuing Conversion: The Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion will be celebrated by Bishop Coyne on the First Sunday of Lent, February 26, 2023, at the Cathedral of Saint Joseph at 3:00 pm. The ritual marks the end of the catechumenate for those in our diocese preparing to be baptized at Easter, and marks the beginning of a period of final, more intense preparation for the sacraments of initiation. During the ritual, on the basis of testimony from the catechumen’s godparents and their own reaffirmation of their intention, the Church decides on their advancement toward the sacraments of initiation and, through the ministry of the Bishop, “elects” them to complete their preparation and receive baptism at Easter. The Bishop also recognizes the already-baptized candidates preparing to join the Catholic Church through the Sacraments of Eucharist and Confirmation for the preparation they have made and calls on them to continue their journey of conversion.
Parishes that have catechumens and candidates in the RCIA program preparing for the reception of Sacraments at Easter are asked to send them to the Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Formation. More information and a registration form can be found below.
All are welcome to join us for this special liturgy as a pledge of prayerful support for and solidarity with the catechumens and candidates from around the diocese.
The Chrism Mass will be held Tuesday, April 4, at 11:00 am at the Cathedral of Saint Joseph in Burlington. At this special Mass celebrated by Bishop Coyne, the Oil of Chrism is consecrated, the Oils of Catechumens and the Sick are blessed, and the priests within the Diocese of Burlington recommit themselves to the Priesthood of Jesus Christ. Parking for free is available along Elmwood Avenue and at the former Cathedral, and pay lots/garages are near the Cathedral (first two hours are free in city-owned parking garages). All are invited to join in celebrating this special Mass. A reception will follow in the parish hall.
Parishes wishing to request holy oils available for pick up may fill out the Oil Request Form below and return it to the Office of Worship.
Diocesan Liturgical Policies and Guidelines
The Diocesan Office of Worship and the Diocesan Worship Commission have been charged with working to update various diocesan policies and guidelines concerning liturgy, including guidelines for liturgical ministers, music, the celebration of matrimony and funerals, art and environment and Exposition and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. As these policies are approved, they will be posted here.
Liturgical Guidelines during the Covid-19 Pandemic
- No restrictions are in place at this time with the exception of distribution of communion to the faithful from the chalice. Masks and hand sanitizer should still be made available at the entrances of the church for anyone who would like to utilize them. It is recommended that windows and doors be open when possible to maximum air circulation in the church.
Liturgical Guidelines for the Diocese of Burlington
- Planning Sheet for the Celebration of Mass with the Bishop
- Rite of Election Registration Form and Information for 2023
- Adult Confirmation Registration Form
- Request for Holy Oils Form
- Order Form
- Prayer for the Return of a Non-Practicing Catholic Pew/Holy Cards
- Bishop deGoesbriand Holy Card
- Prayer for Grandparents and Elders Holy Card
- A Guide to the Celebration of Mass for Visitors and Guests Worship Aid Booklet
Liturgical Catechesis & Formation
Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy: The Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy was the first formal document issued by the Second Vatican Council. The document lays out the vision the council had for the reform of the liturgy which is still being realized today.
General Instruction of the Roman Missal: This detailed document contains the directives for how to celebrate the Mass.
U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Divine Worship: The Bishop’s Committee on Divine Worship is the national committee of bishops responsible for all things having to do with the liturgy in the United States and assists the bishops, both collectively and individually, in liturgical matters. They also have a helpful and extensive Prayer and Worship Page that links to many articles on the Mass and other liturgical celebrations of the Catholic Church.
Taking the Time for Advent: Josh Perry, Director of the Office of Worship, offers a reflection on how Advent prepares us to encounter Christ coming in history, Christ coming in mystery, and Christ coming in majesty and how we can best take the time during Advent to prepare for our encounters with God. Watch Taking the Time for Advent – 2020.
Resources for Lectors: The preparation that occurs in the week prior to one proclaiming the Word of God at Mass is an essential part of the Lector ministry and is as important as the proclamation itself. Throughout 2018, regional workshops on Preparing, Praying with, and Practicing the readings have taken place throughout the diocese. A video of this two hour workshop is available; email Josh Perry for instructions on how to access the video. A list of additional Lector Resources are also available to download.
Funeral Resources: During the month of November, the Church traditionally remembers in a special way those who have died. This is an opportune time to learn more about the Funeral Liturgy the Church offers to the faithful when they die. The articles below provide some initial background on these liturgies. Please contact the Office of Worship or your local pastor if you have particular questions.
A Personal Reflection on the Funeral Mass
November as a Month of Remembering
The Funeral Rites: Three Stages of Prayer
Gathering in the Presence of the Body – A model prayer service when the family first gathers before a wake or funeral service.
Order of Visiting a Cemetery – A model prayer service that can be used when visiting a grave.
Various Prayers for the Month of November
Liturgical Music and Musicians
Sing to the Lord: Music in Divine Worship is a document that provides guidance for the use of music in the liturgy. The document was approved by the U.S. Conference of Catholic bishops in 2007 and is a helpful resource for clergy and liturgical musicians, especially those responsible for coordinating the music at Mass and other liturgical celebrations. A study guide, published by the National Pastoral Musicians group, is also available.
Liturgical Art and Environment
Built of Living Stones, published by the United States bishops in 2000, is a guide that helps parishes plan for the building and renovation of a church. Also included in the document are guidelines and reflections on the use and place of sacred art in worship as well as preparing the church environment for the different liturgical seasons.