Baltimore: what is it?


Sorry if this has already been brought up. but I haven’t seen it anywhere. There is on, right now on EWTN the rededication of the newly remodeled Basilica in Baltimore, it is beautiful, and no hidden tabernacle either, it is front and center.

But what is the thing that looks like a giant umbrella on the right side of the sanctuary? Im not talking about the canopy over the Bishop’s throne, or the canopy over the pulpit, this is to the right of both.


BTW it is red and yellow.


I don’t know . . . somebody here’s gotta know!
It has to be more than just a random decoration; it must have meaning.
[P.S. I got all excited because I thought the reader was veiled, but she just had very long hair.]


The Umbrellina

Only a Pope can designate a Basilica. After receiving this honor, the Basilica officially becomes a Papal church. Subsequently, custom demands that an ornate red and gold umbrella be kept half-opened in the church. The umbrella, or “Umbrellina,” is a sign that the priests and people are always ready to welcome the Holy Father and employ the Umbrellina to shield him against sun or rain.

Note to Moderators: I am hosting the picture, on my own domain site. If this is not acceptable, feel free to edit the post.


I think it must be something that is common to just Basilicas.




It is.


I just caught a few minutes of it. Thankfully, as I read they did keep the old altar and communion rail. I will admit that the restored basilica does not look like a wreckovation. But if the aim was to restore it to its original condition, then the new table altar does look somewhat out of place. As does the receiving of Holy Communion standing when the communion rail is clearly visible. One would think that for historic church buildings, the authorities would make some exceptions to the norm. But I guess, there are NO exceptions! NO pun intended.

Also, I was dismayed that during the Mass, the Agnus Dei was sung with so many of those tropes (i.e. changing the words). Even though I’ve read that is not permitted by the GIRM, one would think that for this solemn Mass of rededication, that they could do things by the books for once. And these are some of the highest church leaders in America. If they let such things slide, who will enforce at the local parish level???/


I for one am very glad for the opportunity to recieve Holy Communion standing.

Since I had a stroke a little more than a year ago there is absolutely no way i could ever get on my knees, and if I did manage to do it, I would never be able to get back up.

I think God is a lot more understanding than a lot of God’s legalistic followers.

I wonder if Mother Angelica gets up out of her wheel chair and kneels at the altar rail?


I am 100% confident that due to health conditions, absolutely no one would object if someone stood while receiving Holy Communion. In fact, I see elderly people do it all the time at one parish we frequent which still uses the communion rail.

I had a ruptured disk in my back two years ago. For some reason, it is still uncomfortable for me to stand for more than 10-15 minutes. So when I have to go to a liberal parish where the priest makes everyone stand for the consecration and during the whole Communion procession, I can hardly wait to sit down. But what is some discomfort as compared to what Christ went through for us?

Is my health the reason that I don’t prefer standing for the consecration? No!!! It’s because according to the rules of the Church, it is not the correct thing to do if kneelers are available. Kneeling before the King of Kings seems a lot more humble and contrite than standing before him IMHO.


Actually you were never ever forbidden to stand to receive Holy Communion even when it was distributed at the Altar Rail if you were handicapped or unable to kneel.

There are a few older people who cannot kneel at the communion rail I see at my parish - a TLM parish - who stand at the communion rail to receive Holy Communion, and others at times who attend in a wheelchair who do not kneel at the altar rail.



And let me tell you something sir - the removal of the Altar Rail and stopping distribution of Holy Communion at it was in no way done to accomodate people like yourself or others. It was done, as my 5’th grade teacher told me, “To show that the Sanctuary was not seperate from the Nave and there was no seperation between God the the congregation.”

Yet somehow that didn’t seem all to correct as I learned and now attend a TLM only parish complete with altar rail whenever I can.



We have an Unbrellina in our parish- yet it is stored away and not on display. In the Traditional Roman Rite a small umbrellina is used for processions of the Blessed Sacrament on Holy Thursday and Corpus Christi. It is held over the priest as he carries the Blessed Sacrament through the Church. When he goes outside the Canopy is used.



It may well be:
baldachin, or baldaquin (Italian: baldacchino, baldachino), is a canopy of state over an altar or throne,


To all. Believe me, I would far prefer to kneel 24 hours a day and to have never had a stroke! But I have to go with what I have been given unfortunately.


How did this turn into a thread about kneeling?

Is what you saw an umbrellina or not? :slight_smile:


Yes it was an umbrellina, and looked almost exactly like your image.


As the question has now been answered the thread is closed.

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