5. RITE FOR RECONCILING A PROFANED CEMETERY

1. If a cemetery contiguous to a profaned church has likewise been profaned, it is reconciled along with the church (see above, Rite for Reconciling a Profaned Church). Otherwise, the reconciling of a cemetery takes place as follows:

In the morning the rector of the cemetery, or another priest who has at least the presumed permission of the former, vested as described above, comes with his assistants to the middle of the cemetery. Here he and the other ministrants kneel on a carpet; and all others present kneel in their places. The Litany of the Saints is chanted in the usual way. At the words “That you grant eternal rest to all the faithful departed,” etc., the priest rises, and making the sign of the cross over the cemetery, says:

That you reconcile + and hallow + this cemetery. R:. We beg you to hear us.

2. He kneels again and the litany is concluded.

3. Then all rise, and the celebrant, taking the aspersory, intones the following antiphon, which is continued by the clergy:

Purify me with hyssop, * Lord, and I shall be clean of sin. Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

The entire psalm 50 is said, but without the doxology (see p. 325), and the above antiphon is repeated.

4. During the psalmody the celebrant, beginning at the right, goes around the entire cemetery, sprinkling it with holy water, above all the place where the profanation occurred. On returning to his place he stands and says:

P: Let us pray.

Ministers: Let us kneel. R. Arise.

The priest:

Merciful Lord, who willed that the potter’s field priced with your blood should be bought as a burial place for strangers, be pleased to remember this mystery of your goodness. For you, Lord, are also our potter, the field of our rest, the price of this field. You gave it even as you accepted it. At the cost of your life-giving blood you gave us peaceful rest. Therefore, Lord, you who are the most merciful pardoner of our guilt, the most considerate judge, the most lavish dispenser of clement judgment, hear our entreaties and be to us an advocate and reconciler, forgetting the harsh judgment that we rightly deserve, and remembering only the mercy of your loving redemption. Deign to purify and to reconcile this resting place of your pilgrims, who look for a haven in your heavenly kingdom. And may you finally awaken the bodies of those who are or who will be buried here, by the power and the glory of your resurrection, to incorruptible glory, calling them forth not to condemnation but to unending happiness. We ask this of you who are coming to judge both the living and the dead and the world by fire.

All: Amen.

{The new code of rubrics for the Missal, no. 447 h, seems to take for granted that Mass will be offered after the reconciliation of a cemetery.}