Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Any Liturgists out there? Candle-ologists, maybe?

Reader Thomas Dillon sent in the following question:

 As we prepare to continue our Sunday Evening Prayers in our parish during Lent, if we decide to have a light service at the beginning of the celebration, is the Pascal candle permitted to be used during a Lenten service of Second Vespers? Our should we use another type of candle? Sorry to bother you again, and thanks so much for being there to answer our questions.

I won't have a chance today  to research church instructions on use of the Pascal candle during lent. If anyone know the answer here, please comment below, or on the previous Q&A post where Tom asked this question in the comments. 



  1. As a Lutheran parish pastor who also prays the Hours, I believe our two churches may approach the use of the Paschal Candle similarly. I was taught that the Paschal Candle is lit for only three occasions: during the Season of Easter, at Baptisms, and at Funerals... times when we behold God working most actively to bring us new life. Pr Jim

  2. But let me also add... I lead Matins and Vespers each Wednesday in our sanctuary for anyone who wishes to participate. I simply light a single votive for that time together. Pr Jim

  3. Traditionally a Catholic funeral Mass would have candles made out of natural/yellow (non-whitened) beeswax candle to reflect the somber mood. Perhaps a similar candle would be appropriate during lent.

  4. I am posting this on behalf of Tom P...

    “After Pentecost, the Easter candle is used for the celebration of Baptisms and funeral rites. However, except when it is needed for these celebrations, it is never brought to the sanctuary and lit during Mass or other rites.” (paragraph 329)

    There is a footnote

    Cf, CLE, no 99. This restriction is meant to protect the specific paschal-baptismal symbolism of the Easter candle.

    From Ceremonies of the Liturgical Year According to the Modern Roman Rite, Msgr Peter J. E;lliot, Ignatius Press.

  5. Thanks you to all for the great pieces of information and suggestions. I guarantee they are going to be used as we plan for some Lenten Vespers.