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Preparation Rites on Holy Saturday

For all the faithful, Holy Saturday is a time of quiet prayer and reflection. For the Elect, (the men, women and children preparing for entrance into the Church) Holy Saturday morning and afternoon is a time to continue their spiritual preparation for their Baptism.

In the Archdiocese of Baltimore, the Elect will gather from 10-11:30 a.m. with their Vicar Bishop to reflect on God's Word and share stories of faith.

Basilica of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Emmitsburg
Bishop W. Francis Malooly, Western Vicar

Our Lady of the Fields, Millersville
Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski, Eastern Vicar

St. Francis of Assisi, Baltimore
Bishop Denis J. Madden, Urban Vicar

Two Preparation Rites are celebrated. The first: the Ephphetha Rite (or rite of opening the ears and mouth) impresses on the elect their need of grace in order to hear the Word of God and profess it for their salvation. For this rite, the elect are called forward by the Bishop to receive a sign of the call to listen to God’s Word and proclaim the gospel with their lives.

The second Rite is the recitation of the Creed. A reading from St. Cyril of Jerusalem on the significance of the Creed is proclaimed.

The elect together with the whole assembly profess their faith. The celebration is concluded with a special blessing of sending. The elect return to their parishes to celebrate the sacraments of initiation on Saturday evening at the Easter Vigil. Cardinal Keeler will celebrate the Easter Vigil at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen at 8 p.m.