Different norms, which rite?

If you saw someone doing the sign of the cross backward and who stood during most of the times when those in the Roman rite kneel (including during consecration), what rite do you think they would be from? Or is it something else perhaps?

From the brief description it sounds like they would be from one of the Byzantine Rite churches; although it could also be that they are from the Alexandrian or any of the other Eastern Rites…though Byzantine is the most likely, depending on where you live.


Could be Byzantine, Chaldean, Coptic? Maronite’s kneel for the Consecration I believe.

It could also be one of the Eastern Orthodox Rites.

Maronites stand for the consecration, with a special kneeling rite during the Liturgy of Pentecost. Kneeling just doesn’t have the same meaning in Middle Eastern culture - where standing and bowing show respect - as it does in Western European culture.

I have the opposite experience as Orthodox Christian of seeing some un-churched people or visitor from foreign country not know what to do during Divine Service. Therefore, I speak to them after or even during to help them to feel more at home and to find out what is their religion or belief and to explain Orthodox belief to them.

It seems strange not to ask the person who could answer your question. This would make them feel at home in your Catolic church. I think in past that Americans are open people and willing to introduce themselve and start to converse. Perhaps computer has made Americans less willing to talk - sad - now you do not know why this person “backwards” crossing and standing

I will say first that I don’t appreciate you posing a statement as a quote from me which I did not say at all! I am not asking for people’s opinions on what I should do if I see someone who acts “differently”.

Please refrain from putting words in my mouth. Thank you!

From our point of view, it’s the Latins who make the sign of the cross backwards.

Perhaps the person was just from another country. A group from my parish went to Ireland. When our pastor celebrated mass there and some of the local people were at the mass we noticed they stood at times we kneel. Afterwards they asked some of us where we were from.

:thumbsup: Good point cluny.

Forgive me, friend Sararaegraham, who am so evidently a sinner for to have made you angry and for have put such words in your mouth. Judge only me and my ignorance of complete English language. Please not to feel or believe that all Orthodox people are as impolite as I have been. I hope you be calmed and can forgive.

No problem at all. :slight_smile:

I seem to remember kneeling several times during the few Maronite Liturgies I have attended, but that was 3-4 years ago.

The practice of kneeling among the Maronites dated from the 16th century, and was part of the external latinizations. In the past 40-some years, it’s been discouraged, but it is not forbidden and there are still some folks who cling to it. The “official” posture is standing.

The Rite of Kneeling on Pentecost is something completely different: it’s the one time on the annual calendar that kneeling is specified. And before anyone bandies the word “latinization” about it, it is most certainly not. The identical practice exists among the Syriac OC & CC.

My first thought would be Byzantine. Then I’d probably ask them. :smiley:

Dating a Byzantine has really opened up my world view of what being a Catholic is.


When my boyfriend and I sit across from each other, usually at restaurants, and we make the sign of the cross to say grace, it’s pretty cool to see that our hands and arms go in perfect unison in the “same direction.” :wink:

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