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Catholic Dictionary




An oration by a priest which concludes the introductory rite of the Mass. The priest first invites the people to pray. They remain silent for a moment to recall that they are in the presence of God. In the Collect that follows, the special characteristics of the celebration are expressed and its sentiments are all directed to the Father through Christ and in the Holy Spirit. The people's assent is expressed with an Amen. Only one Collect is said, with variant conclusions, depending on whether it is directed to the Father, or to the Father but with mention of the Son, or to the Son. In any case, the longer conclusion is used. (Etym. Latin collecta, a meeting, an assembly, especially for prayer.)