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14 August 2014 | by Mark R. Francis

Reactions to the Vatican’s new guidelines on the appropriate way of offering the sign of peace during Mass suggest that the real significance of the document has been misunderstood In a letter dated 12 July 2014, signed by Antonio Cañizares Llovera, the Spanish cardinal who is prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments (CDW) introduced a circular letter to bishops’ conferences entitled “The Ritual Expression of the Gift of Peace at Mass”. According to the letter, this “didactic instruction” was the response to a request by Benedict XVI for a study of the place of the exchange of the sign of peace at Mass – “with a view to improving the understanding and carrying out of this gesture”. Ben

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