Meet and greet before penitential rite?

I have been to a few masses that do this. Sometime after the procession but before the penitential rite, everyone greets each other much like we do when we show each other a sign of peace. Turning to our neighbors, shaking hands, hugging, etc.

To me, this is totally out of sync with the somber reflection we need to have in order to prepare ourselves for the penitential rite and Mass. For me, it goes like this…kneel, praying for weekly shortcomings, mass intentions…switch modes to be chipper and friendly, then quickly get back into prayer/refelction mode to prepare for penitential rite…just does not flow for me at all! Anyone?

We do this at my parish. I’d just as soon we didn’t because:
(a) it’s superfluous;
(b) it’s distracting - as you said;
© we do it again at the “Sign of Peace”

I’ve been to Masses where they use this to replace the Sign of Peace. That’s an abuse that’s been reprobated. The additional practice isn’t mentioned in the GIRM at all.

Anything to make the Mass more “horizontal”, I guess.

Our priest did this twice in two weeks this year. Both times, nobody did as he asked (turn to your neighbor, introduce yourself, say something about yourself, etc.). He hasn’t done it since. Hopefully, he got the hint.

We do this ***before ***the procession at our parish. I do agree that it’s distracting.

We had a visiting priest do this once. He was the Bishop’s right hand assistant. LOL, the guy behind me used the occasion to complain about our priest leaving town too much.

I thought it was okay, I don’t have a problem with it.

My church started doing it. It makes me sad sometimes when people try and start a conversation with me.

The Mass is the only event on Earth that takes us away from earth, away from time and space even, in the sense that it lifts our hearts to heaven and heaven comes down to meet us.

I think that things such as the meet and greet are dangerous because they tear our hearts and minds right back down to Earth, down to focusing on each other rather than on God.

:thumbsup: Welcome to the forums. What a way to make an entrance!

Thanks! Im somewhat new to forums in general so I may be a little inconsistent with my posts though

we do this at my parish , but not in a distracting way and all we do is turn to people and say " peace be with you " i like it it makes it somewhat a little more personal ( if that was possible ) . but we dont strike up conversations

One of the problems I see in the Catholic Church in general is that we often don’t know the people we worship with. In a smaller church – like many Protestant churches – everyone knows everyone else. I think that something like a greeting that helps us connect with each other before we join together to pray is a good thing.

Would you turn around and strike up a conversation with your buddy while standing at the foot of Christ’s Cross in the midst of His crucifixtion? For the Mass is no different than that Sacrifice

And here is where I suppose these kinds of conflicts come from. Some people regard the Mass a strictly a sacrifice, others regard it strictly as a meal, others as the summit of prayer and worship, and others as something else.

Yes, it’s a sacrifice. But that’s not all. It’s a coming together of the members of the body of Christ. And if we can’t show love toward one another by offering a simple greeting, then I think there’s something missing.

If anyone thought that the Eucharist was “strictly a meal”, they sure aren’t at a Mass.

You can give a greeting, it’s just isn’t in the Roman Missal. Doing anything that the Missal says you don’t, or even doing something that is not mentioned in the Missal is disobedience to Rome. By doing so, do you think you’re worthy of the Sacrifice? To disobey Rome is to disobey God.

This was my 666th post. I hope I didn’t scare anybody with this fact, seeing how close it is to Halloween, which is a coincidence that scared me for a second there!:stuck_out_tongue:

I think they should just move the sign of peace to the beginning of the Mass.

Here is a question asked by Dietrich von Hildebrand (see my signature line for the link) which can be asked of the meet and greet (which sometimes gets done in my parish at the beginning of Mass:

“Granted that it strives for a community character; but is this the character desired? Is it a communion grounded in recollection, contemplation and reverence?”

There’s more, and von Hildebrand has a very good understanding of true community as it relates to the liturgy.

Grace and Peace,

Before Mass we are sometimes ask to practice a particularly challenging response or Hymn. After which we are invited ‘to make our Church as place of welcome’… then we are asked to ‘enter into silence, go inward and prepare ourselves for the Liturgy’ which then happens within five minutes or so.

I personally don’t mind at all. :shrug:

In my parish – and I think in any parish I can remember being in – they do the greeting before the start of Mass. So it’s not in the GIRM because it’s before Mass ever starts. And it’s not disobedience because Rome hasn’t dictated what you can do before or after Mass.

We have coffee and donuts after Mass. That’s not a disobedience to the GIRM either.

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