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|Meeting Christ in the Liturgy|
Instruction of the Roman Missal
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The choice of texts for the Communion song is governed by the same rule as the entrance song, with the several options described above (no. 26). With regard to the texts not from the psalter that may be used as the Communion song, the following criterion was adopted by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops in November, 1969:
The Communion song should foster a sense of unity. It should be simple and not demand great effort. It gives expression to the joy of unity in the body of Christ and the fulfillment of the mystery being celebrated. Most benediction hymns, by reason of their concentration on adoration rather than on Communion, are not acceptable, as indicated in the instruction on music in the liturgy, no. 36.
In general, during the most important seasons of the Church year, Easter time, Lent, Christmas and Advent, it is preferable that most songs used at the Communion be seasonal in nature. During the remainder of the Church year, however, topical songs may be used during the Communion procession provided these texts do not conflict with the paschal character of every Sunday («Constitution on the Liturgy,» arts. 102,106).
Only if none of the above alternatives is employed and there is no Communion song, is the antiphon in the «Missal» recited. Until the publication of the complete new «Missal», the antiphon from the present «Missal» is said in such cases (Congregation for Divine Worship, instruction, October 20,1969, no. 13).
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