Can We Hold Hands at Our Father?

The rubrics state there are no proscribed positions during Our Father. Did not the old NCCB ask us not to hold hands? I was under the impression the bishops dealt with this issue around 1975.

Any direction you may point me in that will help with a debate with my pastor and PSR staff?

As far as I can tell, the US Bishops Conference has never officially addressed the matter. Even though it has not be officially addressed by the Bishops Conference does not mean its a free for all. The general principle for liturgy is:

Therefore no other person, even if he be a priest, may add, remove, or change anything in the Liturgy on his own authority.

  • Sacrosanctum Concilium 22,3

While its one thing if a married couple or family spontaneously decide to hold hands amongst themselves, no one can mandate that another person in the congregation hold hands with someone else. To do so would be to add a prescribed position that is not present in the rubrics (which would violate the general principle of liturgy).

The liturgy belongs to the Church, not the priest or the congregation. Neither the priest nor the congregation have the right to invent and insert into the liturgy their own novelties or force others to adopt them.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit