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Catholic Dictionary




A list of intercessions, usually in litany form that was read at Mass after the Gospel in pre-Reformation times. Going back to the early Church, by the ninth century the priest prayed for all conditions of persons and commemorated the faithful departed after the sermon on Sundays and feast days. In England the custom was called "bidding the beads." Such biddings formed part of the popular devotions, instructions, and notices attached to the sermon. Taken together, the practice was known in France as the prône. At first left to the discretion of the faithful, the bidding prayer later assumed fixed forms.