Q: I have an Easter Vigil question, on nos. 49 & 55. We have a father & son (sophomore in our school) receiving the Sacraments of Initiation.
I know two people isn’t a large number but how can we do the renunciation/promises once or combine these 2 parts, to avoid quasi-redundancy? Can we do this? And if so how? I ask since the abbot & I have early Masses on Sunday, I’m mindful of the hour! Yes it’s the Easter Vigil, but… And after the assembly is sprinkled, the Confirmation occurs, followed by the prayer of the faithful?
I’ve reviewed the rubrics and your book, Glory in the Cross, but figured I’d get your theological & pastoral perspective.
A: God bless you for helping these people at the Vigil. Are the father and son both receiving all three sacraments of initiation? If so, then you may have the assembly renew baptismal promises in response to the same questions addressed to the father and son. 54 says this may be done when “many” are to be baptized. But that is the way they do it at St. Peter’s in the Vatican. The pope asks the questions once, and everyone responds. The Vatican typically initiates 6 or so at the Vigil. So that’s how they interpret “many”. In the light of your other responsibilities that weekend, it sounds as though two will also be “many” – so you’re OK. (Honestly, I don’t like it that way. I think after all the catechumens have been through, they should individually profess their faith. But you are free to do it. I have 16 initiates this year, so I may be doing it this way myself.)
After the renunciation/profession, continue with the baptism, clothing & candle, and confirmation from the RCIA. Then I think you would go back to the missal for the sprinkling and the prayer of the faithful. From what I can tell, they skip the sprinkling of the assembly at the Vatican. I would try to include it, and I think it’s more important to keep confirmation next to baptism than to put sprinkling next to the renewal of promises.