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Posted September 12, 2007

Book: Understanding the General Instruction of the Roman Missal
Author: Gerard Moore
Paulist Press. New York. 2007. Pp. 121

An Excerpt from the Jacket:

Dr. Moore’s clearly written book is an exploration and commentary on the inner dynamics and theological streams at the heart of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), which is the core text for celebrating the Mass. The title is a must-read for:

Clergy looking to follow both the letter and the spirit of liturgical law

Liturgists expressing interest in the new norms of the Mass

Lay ministers searching for a better grasp of their role in the Liturgy

Laity striving to participate more fully at Holy Mass

Refreshingly readable for an explanation of such a document, Professor Moore’s book walks the reader through the challenges and changes in the new GIRM with grace and guidance.

An Excerpt from the Book:

Accordingly, the GIRM can be seen to offer worshipers five key principles for interpreting our celebration of the Mass. The first two are that our celebration of the Eucharist should be pastorally effective and, as such, should encourage full, active, and conscious participation by all. The third is that to achieve these, we need to be attentive to the genres and functions of each rite, prayer, building, furnishing — in short whatever we do or use. The fourth is that our actions and objects ought to reflect appropriate standards of dignity, beauty, and solemnity. Finally, in light of all this, the Instruction desires that our celebration go beyond mere attention to the rubrics, and reflect the very spirit of the Sacred Liturgy itself.

Table of Contents

1. Principles of Interpretation

2. Theological themes

3. The mystery of the church

4. The people of God arrayed hierarchically

5. The Eucharistic celebration