Q: On the second Monday of Easter, while lighting the paschal candle for morning Mass, it was dropped and split in half. There was some effort to repair it, but it doesn’t look right. Our pastor is concerned about purchasing a new candle, then using a candle not blessed at the Vigil. Are there any rituals/blessings that could be employed to signify this? Any advice would be appreciated.
A: My condolences! The liturgy doesn’t have a way of dealing with this, so it’s a judgment call. Here are some options I can think of:
– Shorten the candle. Just use whatever part of it is salvageable.
– Buy a new candle and have the priest prayerfully do the preparations that normally take place at the Vigil.
– Buy a new candle and just use it.
If it’s any consolation, the paschal candle is not blessed at the Vigil. The fire is blessed. Here at the cathedral, we follow an old tradition and keep the fire going in the sacristy all year round, lighting altar candles from it every day. It keeps Easter alive for every celebration of the eucharist.