Q: GIRM 120 states “… the priests and ministers, wearing the sacred vestments, go in procession to the altar in this order:” pg.49. There is no mention of others joining the procession during the Introductory Rites.
So, please expound on the common traditions of crowds of people in Palm Sunday processions approaching the Altar and children in First Eucharist processions as well.
A: In the Roman Missal, the First Form for the Procession on Palm Sunday instructs “all the faithful carrying branches” to follow the ministers (9).
The Catholic Church has no official ritual for first holy communion, so a variety of customs has developed in many places. The inclusion of children in the procession is probably inspired by the rituals for special events such as baptisms, ordinations, weddings and funerals – and Palm Sunday.