Raising or holding hands during "Art Father"

Is their any magisterium or church documents saying we need to hold hands or raise/elevator our hands during Art Father during Holy Mass?

Thank you,


It’s the “OUR Father.”

I don’t think there is.

In one parish I attend they do hold hands; it’s done by everyone and raise them at the appropriate time.

I have been in other parishes where they don’t and if you reach out your hand to hold theirs they politiely keep their hands to themselves.


I would also like to know if this is an optional practice as given that 1 out of the four parishes here do this it seems to be as such; unless of course it’s not to be done at all.

It is an optional practice and it’s not in the Roman missal. It’s not supposed to be there and you’re not supposed to be doing it. If other people do it, you can totally ignore it if you want. I do.

No. It’s not in the rubrics so it’s not required. I’m not aware of anything saying (yet) that it’s forbidden for the laity to do it spontaneously (though supposedly the issue is being studied), but it’s not obligatory and I find it invasive and weird, so I don’t do it.

Fr. Z. has said repeatedly, on the other hand, that it is a grave liturgical abuse for priests to call on the laity to hold hands.

I don’t lift my hands at all until the faithful are to say: “The Kingdom, the Power and Glory are Yours, now and forever.”

Maybe I should stop that too, but the problem is was that I was raised as such by my parents. :shrug:


Yes, people are used to it. The gesture has been imbued with meaning by some people, and the rest of the people who do it, do it out of habit. It’s one of those old 1970s things.

Quite the contrary, it is not proper and should be avoided, although perhaps cannot be called an abuse per se.

ETWN answer by by Fr. Edward McNamara, professor of liturgy at the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical Athenaeum:

The use of this practice during the Our Father could detract and distract from the prayer’s God-directed sense of adoration and petition, as explained in Nos. 2777-2865 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, in favor of a more horizontal and merely human meaning.

For all of these reasons, no one should have any qualms about not participating in this gesture if disinclined to do so. They will be simply following the universal customs of the Church, and should not be accused of being a cause of disharmony. …]

Personally I would not go so far as to say that the gesture negates the sign of peace, but it does anticipate and duplicate it from the symbolic point of view and, as a consequence, probably detracts from its sign value. …]

holding hands during the Our Father is very much a novelty in the millenarian history of Catholic liturgy …]

Concerning a document from the Congregation for Divine Worship on holding hands, ETWN vice president for theology Colin B. Donovan, STL, comments:

  1. It is an inappropriate “sign,” since Communion is the sign of intimacy. Thus, a gesture of intimacy is introduced both before the sign of reconciliation (the Sign of Peace), but more importantly, before Holy Communion …]
  1. It is introduced on personal initiative. The Holy See has authority over the liturgy …]

Thus, if my mom grabs hold of my hand spontaneously, there is nothing wrong in going along with it, but it can otherwise be avoided.

You are not supposed to be doing it. Some people do, it’s nothing bad, but just a bad habit formed after Vatican II.

I just put my hands on the pew, but if I’m with my sponsors --who do hold hands-- then I’ll bide, just to not cause a commotion. However you’re supposed to not hold or raise hands during the Our Father. But if you want to, you can…it’s nothing serious, just not a good habit to form. :slight_smile:

I’m glad someone finally asked this.(not sure why I never did) but I deteste holding hands. I don’t know why, but touching people has always creeped me out. I can barely go to a Reds game because of my armrestophobia. Glad to hear it’s not mandatory.:smiley:

LOL. I have armrestophobia too. :stuck_out_tongue:

Who started this practice and how did it become so widespread?

Good question! :hmmm:

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