The Western Rite

The Western Rite is a term for the order of service used in many churches. It is called Western to distinguish it from the Eastern Rite (Churches in the “Orthodox” tradition, Greek, Russian, Armenian, etc.).

The Order of Mass in the Roman Catholic Church, the Order of Holy Communion or the Common Service in the Lutheran Church, and the Holy Eucharist in Anglican and Episcopal churches are all versions of or derived from the Western Rite.

Nearly every version of the Western Rite follows this outline:

  1. Kyrie
  2. Gloria in Excelsis
  3. Service of the Word
    • Prayer/Collect of the Day
    • Readings
      • First Reading
      • Psalm
      • Second Reading
      • Gospel Acclamation / Verse / Alleluia
      • Gospel
    • Sermon
  4. Credo
  5. Sursum Corda, Preface (Anaphora)
  6. Sanctus
  7. Prayer of Thanksgiving
  8. Lord’s Prayer
  9. Verba (Words of Institution)
  10. Agnus Dei
  11. Communion
  12. Dismissal/Blessing
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Lutheran pastor and musician serving St. Stephen's in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.

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