Abbot Jeremy Driscoll is a Benedictine monk of Mount Angel Abbey in Oregon.  He teaches at Mount Angel Seminary and the Pontifical University of Sant’ Anselmo, Rome.  Following are notes on Father Jeremy Driscoll’s presentation “What Happens at Mass” at Saint Bernard’s on March 18, 2017 in Billings, Montana.  For complete information please refer to “What Happens At Mass” Revised Edition by Jeremy Driscoll, OSB.

The Communion Rite starts when I stand then say the prayer Jesus taught us, “Our Father …”

This is the essential proper place for the prayer Jesus offered for this sacrifice. 
The Assembly is standing for the Lord’s Prayer.  The prayer itself is being address to God the Father and I am moving towards the Father.

A Sermon on Prayer

At the Savior’s command
and formed by divine teaching,
we dare to say:

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.


Deliver us, Lord, we pray, from every evil,
graciously grant peace in our days,
that, by the help of your mercy,
we may be always free from sin
and safe from all distress,
as we await the blessed hope
and the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Conclusion of Prayer

For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours now and for ever.

Peace is another word for Communion. Code is “and with your spirit,” where peace from Christ is passed to the Assembly.

Sign of Peace

Lord Jesus Christ,
who said to your Apostles;
Peace I leave you, my peace I give you;   John 20:21
look not on our sins,
but on the faith of your Church,
and graciously grant her peace and unity
in accordance with your will.
Who live and reign for ever and ever.
Ephesians 2:14-16  |  Colossians 1:20

Assembly:   Amen. 

Presider:  The peace of the Lord be with you always. 

The Assembly’s response is: And with your spirit.  Code:  something better is going to happen. This particle code indicates the Assembly recognizes they cannot have communion without peace with our neighbor.

If appropriate, the Deacon, or the Priest, adds:  Let us offer each other the sign of peace.


If the priest says “Let us offer each other the sign of peace.” The congregation turns to those near them and shakes hands or hugs them of some other appropriate gesture.

Then the priest takes the host, breaks it over the paten, and places a small piece in the chalice, saying quietly:

May this mingling of the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ bring eternal life to us who receive it.  The Assembly is the one body.

Breaking of the Bread into smaller pieces. One of the smaller pieces will be given to me.  This is so I can act like and be the body and Spirit of Christ.  I am the hand and feet of Jesus now.

Breaking of the Bread  Acts of the Apostles 2:46

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world,
have mercy on us
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world,
have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world,
grant us peace.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, who, by the will of the Father and the work of the Holy Spirit, through your Death gave life to the world, free me by this, your most holy Body and Blood, from all my sins and from every evil; keep me always faithful to your commandments, and never let me be parted from you. Or: May the receiving of your Body and Blood, Lord Jesus Christ, not bring me to judgment and condemnation, but through your loving mercy be for me protection in mind and body and a healing remedy.

Invitation to Communion:

The Communion Procession:
We process to the Lord’s Table solemnly and with reverence. As we process we sing for we are about to receive the fullness of life.

I go to the Lord’s Table solemnly and with reverence. As I process I sing for I am about to receive the fullness of life.  To finish Communion, we stand.  The priest finishes the receiving of Communion with a prayer starting with “Let Us Pray.”


The Priest genuflects, takes the host and, holding it slightly raised above the paten or above the chalice, while facing the people, says aloud:

Priest:  Behold the Lamb of God, behold him who takes away the sins of the world. Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb.

Assembly:  Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.

After this, the priest takes the paten or ciborium and approaches the communicants. The priest raises a host slightly and shows it to each of the communicants.

Comment:  If the host is received in the hand, it should be eaten immediately. As a sign of reverence to our Lord in the sacrament, communicants bow their heads, or genuflect, as the communicant in front of them receives the Sacred Host. The same is done when receiving the Precious Blood from the chalice.

Prayer After Communion

“Let us pray.” – followed by silence.

This invitation means to signal a shift of levels, prayers with different kind of attention. There is a short pause to have the Assembly act as one.

The great diversity is pulled into one in the prayer that closes the Communion Rite.

Assembly responds:  Amen.

Concluding Rites – Next Page

Liturgy of the Eucharist – Previous Page

Notes on the Mass – Start of Section