Wednesday, May 18, 2011
THAT WHICH IS PRESCRIBED AND THAT WHICH ISN'T
In the Catholic Mass there are things that we do in common and then there is some room for personal piety that is, well, personal.
When I was a child, many people after receiving Holy Communion would bury their heads in their hands or even put their forehead to the top of the pew. I thought they were upset or something, until my father told me that is the way they chose to pray and give thanks to God, but not everyone has to do it that way.
We had our First Holy Communion this past Sunday. In our rehearsal, I made sure to tell the children that before they receive Holy Communion, they should bow to the host as this is prescribed as the reverence that is shown prior to receiving Holy Communion in the United States.
However, we also have a custom in our parish and in many other places of making the sign of the cross after receiving Holy Communion.
So our children very dutifully bowed before receiving and made the sign of the cross afterward, one officially prescribed rubric, another a parish custom.
How much personal adaptation should we allow the laity at Mass:
holding hands in prayer?
Raising hands as charismatics do?
standing for the Eucharistic prayer?
What da ya think?