Orans posture prohibited during Lord's Prayer


Its really not a matter of intent. I doubt anyone who does it is meaning to imitate the priest, regardless if they are from a charismatic background or not. The only issue is, is it allowed? I believe the answer is no, so I certainly do not do it. But there is obviously a difference of opinion, reasonable people can apparently disagree on this one.


It would only upset me if I happened to attend and someone next to me expected me to hold hands.


I hate to be cynical, but I am under the impression (which I believe to be well founded) that the percentage of people in the state of grace at any given Sunday mass is lower than 100%.


A Priest who gave our Lenten Mission once said that what he “admires” is when he is giving Holy Communion and he sees some people stay in the pew and not receive. He said those people are truthful with themselves and with God and they KNOW they are not in a state of Grace to receive Our Lord and he respects them for doing that and not just coming up for Holy Communion because everyone else does.


No, they’d graciously respect your rudeness. :smiley:



Or maybe their mislead by scrupulosity ?



As intent is important to God, it should be important to use. I think someone who always prays in the posture in more innocent than someone who for whatever reason believes it to be wrong and prays in defiance. Lack of intent to defy is one thing that allows for organic change in the liturgy, even if it comes from Protestants or charismatics.


Interesting topic. Here is some fact based background… draws no conclusion but shows roots of posture. http://www.canonlaw.info/liturgysacraments_orans.htm


I doubt God cares, even a little bit about how someone positions their arms while they are praying.


I bet God cares more about a person who rejects an outreached hand.



I had some sarcastic statements but deleted them.


We have a majority doing the Orans posture. And most people hold hands during the Our Father. For Communion the lector makes an announcement before Communion advising those “Catholics who are not prepared to receive the Eucharist or others not of our Faith, to cross their hands over their chest to receive a blessing from a minister or celebrant.”

So in that way no one is singled out for staying back in the pew while others go forward. I guess if people understand that difference, than it can work out for being more discreet.

As a new convert, I spent many years locked in a critical rigorism, monitoring everyone and keeping a running list of things that weren’t being done “right.” But I’ve stopped doing that because I realized I wasn’t in charge of the Mass or the priest or the parishioners. The priest sees what’s going on. It’s on him to say something or change things if he perceives it needs to be done. It’s been a lot better for me spiritually to just focus on my own faults and failings as a I prepare for Communion.


It really upsets some people who don’t want to hold hands period.
In my archdiocese (Vancouver), even shaking hands at the sign of peace is becoming more rare due to Asian influence. A bow of the head prevails now in many places including the cathedral. I get sick often enough with my son in daycare… the less hand contact with strangers the better (brothers and sisters in Christ or not… heck if a bow of the head isn’t enough for you, I’ll gladly do a full bow).


I’d instead use the phrase, “beat the horse to death, and spent a few more days kicking it” . . . :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


We hold hands at my little Parish. I was a little surprised about this thread and now I’m going to have to ask my priest about this orands posture. Everyone in our church does it during the Our father if they’re not holding hands with someone. No one has ever told me otherwise that it was something we shouldn’t do. When I first started coming to this church my sponsor said to just do what everyone else is doing. Which included holding our hands up during the Our Father.
Newly confirmed Catholic in 2017!



I personally do not use Orans posture out of obedience and respect. I asked if it were permissable and the answer I received is that it is not. That was enough for me. I’m not trying to convince anybody not to do it. If you really want to know, you can ask, and see how your priest feels about it. I bet some will say it’s okay (with them), and others will say “well, you really should not”.


“The next time you are at Mass, watch the priest’s gestures closely. Anytime he offers prayers on behalf of the faithful, he uses the Orans Posture. Anytime he is offering other prayers, his hands are folded together. Having a better understanding of what particular gestures mean will lead to a better understanding of the Liturgy.”

VERY interesting. I like to learn the “whys” about the Mass.


Good post.

My biggest pet peeve about the people doing the Orans Posture during the Our Father is the fact that most of them don’t do it when praying the Our Father outside of Mass.

For example, one parish near my office has the Evening Prayer before Mass. There’s about 10 minutes between the two. Lots of people attend Evening Prayer and then stay for Mass.

During Evening Prayer, only about 1 or 2 people use the Orans Posture for the Our Father during Evening Prayer. But then a number of them who didn’t do it during Evening Prayer do it during Mass.

That’s what gets my goat. If you are going to raise your hands for the Our Father - do it every time you pray it. Not just during Mass.

God Bless


And if there is a Deacon assisting, notice he refrains from using Orans Posture. :slight_smile:

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