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Enthroning the Bible in the Family

 

 catechetical-sunday-2015-poster-english-spanish-animatedTo show that God is at the center of their lives, many families enthrone the Bible, the Word of God, in a visible place in their homes. By placing the Sacred Scriptures in a prominent place decorated with flowers and art, and by gathering at this spot for daily prayer, families show that God is present and active through his Word.

Enthroning the Bible in your home is easy to do. Simply pick a place where the Bible can be honored. The Bible should be placed where it will be seen regularly, but removed from the noise and confusion of the family entertainment center. Place the Bible, opened to a favorite passage or the readings of the day , on a table or shelf. Decorate the area around the Bible with a cloth, flowers, and/or a candle—whatever makes sense to you. Use the following ritual prayer when you gather as a family to enthrone the Bible.


Things to prepare:

Bible
A shelf or table where the Bible will be placed (the shelf may be adorned with a cloth and candles)


When possible, the ritual may start outside the main door to the house or the main entrance to the room. One member of the family holds the Bible, raised slightly. The father, mother, or other leader begins the celebration with the Opening Litany.

Leader:  Our Lord Jesus Christ, you are the Word of the Father.
R.  Come, Lord Jesus, come.

Leader: You became one with us to tell of the Father's love.
R.  Come, Lord Jesus, come.

Leader:  You are the light that shines in the darkness.
R.  Come, Lord Jesus, come.

Leader: You save us from fear and break the bonds of sin and death.
R.  Come, Lord Jesus, come.

Leader:  You come to guide our steps and lead us to God.
R.  Come, Lord Jesus, come.

Leader:  You are the Word of eternal Life.
R.  Come, Lord Jesus, come.

Leader:  You fill us with the Holy Spirit.
R.  Come, Lord Jesus, come.

As everyone enters the house or room, they may sing a suitable song.

Then Scripture is read from the Bible:

Matthew 4:17-23    Jesus calls and heals through the power of his Word.
Mark 4:1-20            The Word is like the seed.
Luke 4:14-21         Jesus proclaims the Word in Nazareth.
John 1:10-14        Jesus, the Word of God and the light of the world.

After the reading, the leader places the Bible in the place prepared for it.  All bow deeply before the enthroned Bible.

Leader:

We have heard your words, Jesus.
They give us joy and bring light and truth into our lives.
Your presence gives us peace in our troubled and divided world.
Let your Word create in our hearts a deep desire for you.
Be with us in our hearts and homes, in our community and country.
Give us your Holy Spirit to help us to understand your Word.
We enthrone now this Holy Bible in our midst.
Make your Word the center of our lives.
May your Word inspire all that we think and say and do.
May your Word bind us together in unity with each other and with you.
Today and forever.
        R.    Amen.

All join in saying the Lord's Prayer.

All repeat after the leader:

We promise to respect the Word of God in our midst.
We shall read and reflect on it as a family of God.
May we draw from it inspiration for our decisions,
              strength for our work,
              and comfort in suffering.
Jesus, help us to be faithful to our promise,
             you who live forever and ever.
Amen.

The celebration concludes with a sign of peace.

Adapted from "Enthroning the Bible in the Family" by Pauline Publications Africa. Used with permission.



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