And With Your Spirit: the words 1.3

17 Aug

At the very core of his being, a priest is a priest, ordained to stand in place of Christ at the altar and to act in the person of Christ at the sacrifice of the Mass. When the priest greets the people, they respond, “And with your spirit.” The people are, in a sense, speaking about the spirit that he received at ordination and the Spirit that is in him because of his ordination. In their response the people are saying, “Be a priest for us like Jesus would be a priest for us, if he were standing where you are standing right now. In fact, remember that you are standing in his place right now. Be a priest for us. God will be with you – and your spirit – to help you do well what you do now.”

This “Et cum spiritu tuo” is addressed only to an ordained minister: bishop, priest or deacon. So, it must have something to do with ordination. And it appears in the Mass at points where the bishop, priest or deacon is preparing to do something that is very closely related to his ministry as a bishop, priest or deacon.  

This is how it will sound if the dialogue is chanted: And with your spirit.

 

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