We are quickly approaching the new liturgical year. On teh First Sunday of Advent, we will innagurate the Third Typical Edition of the Roman Missal. Many questions have come forth asking what we are to do with the then abbrogated Sacramentary. The Adoramus Bulliten republished selections of the USCCB’s Committee on Divine Worship Newsletter that addresses these questions.
How to Dispose of Liturgical Books
In the March-April Newsletter of the US bishops’ Committee on Divine Worship, the Secretariat responded to questions about the disposition of copies of the current Sacramentary once the new Roman Missal has been implemented. Following are excerpts from the response:
“There is relatively little written about exactly what to do with liturgical books which have been replaced by updated or revised editions, but some related writings, as well as some common sense, can provide some context…
“Whether or not the Sacramentary has been blessed by an official rite, it is appropriate to treat it with care as it has been admitted into liturgical use. Its disposal should be handled with respect. The Secretariat recommends burying the Sacramentary in an appropriate location on church grounds, or perhaps in a parish cemetery if there is one.… In lieu of burying old liturgical books, they could be burned, and the ashes placed in the ground in an appropriate location on church grounds. It is advisable to retain a copy of the Sacramentary for parish archives or liturgical libraries”.
The Newsletter mentions the new Missals may be blessed before use, and that this “could take place during a Mass on the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King, at the last weekday Mass prior to the First Sunday of Advent, or outside Mass at a separate gathering of liturgical ministers or other parish leaders”.
Regarding outdated hymnals and other participation aids (such as hand missals) some copies may be kept for archives or might be “offered to parishioners for their own private devotional use, or donated to other small communities that could effectively make use of them”, the Newsletter said. However, annual hymnals and periodical participation aids should be discarded after their prescribed period of use and cannot be retained for other uses.
Source: BCDW Newsletter, Vol. XLVII, March-April 2011