Here you have the prayers, readings, and everything else you need to celebrate with God’s Word.
The celebration of Easter
takes place over the next seven weeks,
and will be crowned by Pentecost.
Until the end of social distancing, Aleteia will offer you
a daily celebration of the Word of God at home
to sanctify every day of the Easter season.
In collaboration with Magnificat magazine
Mass on TV, or a celebration at home?
- This celebration requires the presence of at least two people.
- If you are alone, it is preferable to simply read the readings and prayers found in the proposed celebration.
- This celebration is particularly suitable for use with family. In order to respect quarantine measures, you should refrain from inviting others from outside your household. If anyone in your house is ill, make sure they remain in isolation to ensure that all safety guidelines are strictly followed.
- Set up the needed number of chairs in front of a prayer corner, respecting distance between them.
- Light one or more candles, placing them on non-flammable stands (such as candlesticks or small porcelain plates). Don’t forget to blow them out at the end of the celebration. Place some flowers and decorations as a sign of joy. A simple cross or crucifix should always be visible in the background.
- Designate a person to lead the prayer. He or she will also determine the length of the periods of silence. Designate a reader.
Celebration of the Word
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus Christ,
our hope, our light, and our salvation.
All are seated.
The leader of the celebration reads:
Brothers and sisters,
On Easter morning, a new dawn arose
of a humanity transfigured by the resurrection
of Jesus of Nazareth, our God and Savior.
In the infinite love of our Father in heaven,
He has given us the supreme testimony of his tenderness:
To redeem us from the powers of evil and death
Which had taken us hostage,
He has ransomed us with his beloved Son,
The only begotten of his love,
Going so far as to give him to us as a brother in humanity,
So that with him we can win
The victory of love, the victory of life
And that in him we may inherit eternal happiness.
Throughout our earthly tribulations,
he is our Hope!
he is our light and our Salvation!
Enlightened by his divine light, we become aware
our limitations and our weakness,
and the damage our sins cause.
But spurred on by our Hope,
we want to tell him of our faith in his Resurrection,
and thank him for giving us
the greatest proof of love:
his life for the glory of God.
and the Salvation of the world!
O Jesus, we are prevented from
perpetuating the offering of your life
by the celebration of the Eucharist:
more than ever, we ask you to make it present
in the way we love each other
as you loved us.
After three minutes of silence, all rise and make the Sign of the Cross, saying:
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
The leader continues:
To prepare ourselves to receive God’s Word
and in order for it to heal us,
we recognize ourselves as sinners.
The penitential rite follows. For example:
Have mercy on us, O Lord.
For we have sinned against you.
Show us, O Lord, your mercy.
And grant us your salvation.
May Almighty God have mercy on us;
forgive us our sins,
And bring us to everlasting life.
The following is said or sung:
Lord, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
The leader says the opening prayer:
The Lord has risen from the dead, as he said;
let us all exult and rejoice,
for he reigns for all eternity, alleluia. Alléluia.
FIRST READING (Acts 2:14, 22-33)
A reading from the Acts of the Apostles.
On the day of Pentecost, Peter stood up with the Eleven,
raised his voice, and proclaimed:
“You who are Jews, indeed all of you staying in Jerusalem.
Let this be known to you, and listen to my words.
“You who are children of Israel, hear these words.
Jesus the Nazorean was a man commended to you by God
with mighty deeds, wonders, and signs,
which God worked through him in your midst, as you yourselves know.
This man, delivered up by the set plan and foreknowledge of God,
you killed, using lawless men to crucify him.
But God raised him up, releasing him from the throes of death,
because it was impossible for him to be held by it.
For David says of him:
I saw the Lord ever before me,
with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed.
Therefore my heart has been glad and my tongue has exulted;
my flesh, too, will dwell in hope,
because you will not abandon my soul to the nether world,
nor will you suffer your holy one to see corruption.
You have made known to me the paths of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence.
My brothers, one can confidently say to you
about the patriarch David that he died and was buried,
and his tomb is in our midst to this day.
But since he was a prophet and knew that God had sworn an oath to him
that he would set one of his descendants upon his throne,
he foresaw and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ,
that neither was he abandoned to the netherworld
nor did his flesh see corruption.
God raised this Jesus;
of this we are all witnesses.
Exalted at the right hand of God,
he poured forth the promise of the Holy Spirit
that he received from the Father, as you both see and hear.”
The Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
PSALM(16:1-2a and 5, 7-8, 9-10, 11)
R/ Alleluia ! Alleluia ! Alleluia !
Keep me, O God, for in you I take refuge;
I say to the LORD, “My Lord are you.”
O LORD, my allotted portion and my cup,
you it is who hold fast my lot.R/
I bless the LORD who counsels me;
even in the night my heart exhorts me.
I set the LORD ever before me;
with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed.R/
Therefore my heart is glad and my soul rejoices,
my body, too, abides in confidence;
Because you will not abandon my soul to the nether world,
nor will you suffer your faithful one to undergo corruption. R/
You will show me the path to life,
fullness of joys in your presence,
the delights at your right hand forever. R/
This is the day the LORD has made;
let us be glad and rejoice in it.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew.
Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went away quickly from the tomb,
fearful yet overjoyed,
and ran to announce the news to his disciples.
And behold, Jesus met them on their way and greeted them.
They approached, embraced his feet, and did him homage.
Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid.
Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee,
and there they will see me.”
While they were going, some of the guard went into the city
and told the chief priests all that had happened.
The chief priests assembled with the elders and took counsel;
then they gave a large sum of money to the soldiers,
telling them, “You are to say,
‘His disciples came by night and stole him while we were asleep.’
And if this gets to the ears of the governor,
we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.”
The soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed.
And this story has circulated among the Jews to the present day.
No acclamation concludes the reading of the Gospel.
All are seated, and the leader repeats slowly,
as if it were a far-off echo:
In the depths of our heart,
let us listen to the echo these words of the Son to his Father,
words which each of us has received the grace to make our own:
“You will show me the path to life,
fullness of joys in your presence,
the delights at your right hand forever.”
All observe five minutes of silence for silent personal meditation.
The leader indicates the end of the period of silence, and invites all to rise.
The leader introduces the Lord’s Prayer:
United in the Spirit and in the communion of the Church,
we dare to pray as the Lord Jesus himself
All say or sing the Our Father:
Continuing immediately with:
For the kingdom…
Then the leader invites those present to share a sign of peace:
We have just joined our voices
with that of the Lord Jesus to pray to the Father.
We are sons and daughters in the Son.
In the love that unites us with one another,
renewed by the word of God,
we can exchange a gesture of peace,
a sign of the communion
we receive from the Lord.
All then exchange a greeting of peace from a distance: for example, by bowing deeply towards each other in turn; or, as a family, by blowing each other a kiss. Then all sit down.
The leader says:
When we cannot receive sacramental communion for lack of a Mass, Pope Francis urges us to practice spiritual communion, also called “communion of desire.”
The Council of Trent reminds us that this “consists in an ardent desire to feed on the Heavenly Bread, with a living faith that acts through charity and that makes us participants in the fruits and graces of the Sacrament.” The value of our spiritual communion depends therefore on our faith in the presence of Christ in the Eucharist as a source of life, love and unity, and our desire to receive Communion in spite of our inability to do so.
With that in mind, I now invite you to bow your head, to close your eyes and recollect yourselves.
Deep in our hearts,
may a burning desire arise within us to unite ourselves with Jesus,
in sacramental communion,
and then to bring His love to life into our lives,
loving others as He loved us.
All remain in silence for 5 minutes for a
heart-to-heart conversation with Jesus Christ.
A hymn of thanksgiving may be sung.
All recite together the following prayer:
May the grace of this paschal mystery
abound in our minds, we pray, O Lord,
and make those you have set on the way of eternal salvation
worthy of your gifts.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
The leader of the celebration, with hands joined in prayer,
says the blessing in the name of all:
Through the intercession of St. N.
[patron saint of the parish, diocese or country],
and of all the saints of God,
May the God of perseverance and courage
grant us to manifest throughout our lives
the spirit of sacrifice, compassion and love
of Christ Jesus.
Thus, in the communion of the Holy Spirit,
we will give glory to God,
the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
for ever and ever!
All together facing the cross, each with their hands joined in prayer,
invoke the Lord’s Blessing:
May the Lord let his face shine upon us
and come and save us. Amen.
All make the Sign of the Cross.
Then parents may trace the Sign of the Cross on their children’s foreheads.
To conclude the celebration, the participants may sing the Regina Caeli,
or some other joyful, well-known Marian hymn.
Regína caéli, lætáre, Allelúia!
Quia quem meruísti portáre, Allelúia!
Resurréxit, sicut dixit, Allelúia!
Ora pro nóbis Déum, Allelúia!
O Queen of heaven rejoice! Alleluia!
For He whom thou didst merit to bear, Alleluia!
Hath arisen as he said, Alleluia!
Pray for us to God, Alleluia!
To continue to sanctify this day, it would be good to reconnect with the venerable tradition of vespers by celebrating, towards the end of the afternoon, the office of the Liturgy of the Hours, or you can pray today’s Evening Prayer, which can be found on the Magnificat website.
Throughout the Easter season, Aleteia will propose daily guides for celebrations at home, to help you continue to sanctify the each day, for the glory of God and the salvation of the world.
You can also find other resources for free on the Magnificat website.