Topic Progress:

(4.32) Preface

Liturgical Prayer and Action

We remain standing for the preface as he leads the assembly in praising and giving thanks to the Lord.


A.  Eucharistic Prayer I (Roman Canon), II, III and

Eucharistic Prayer IV

The Priest can choose one of several prefaces available for each Eucharistic Prayer except Eucharistic Prayer IV which has its own preface that is not permitted to be changed.


B.    Sanctus or Acclamation concludes the Preface

We all say: 

Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of hosts.
Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.


Origin and Meaning

As we conclude the Preface, angels from above and people on earth join together to sing praise to God.

The prayer begins with the passages that are found in Isa 6:3 and Rev 4:8:

Isaiah had vision of God in the Temple a year after King Uzziah died. He saw the Lord sitting on the throne with angels called Seraphs above him singing;

 “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory” (Isa 6:3).

The last lines of the Sanctus were taken in the account of Jesus’ Entry into Jerusalem in which a very large crowd shouted;

“Hosanna to the Son of David!
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Hosanna in the highest heaven” (Mt 21:9).


C.   Thanksgiving (from Eucharistic Prayer III)

The Priest says:
You are indeed Holy, O Lord,  Celebrant alone and all you have created  rightly gives you praise,  for through your Son our Lord Jesus Christ,  by the power and working of the Holy Spirit,  you give life to all things and make them holy,  and you never cease to gather a people to yourself,  so that from the rising of the sun to its setting  a pure sacrifice may be offered to your name.