Reasons to Stand During the Consecration

Two situations have come up for me in the last week involving kneeling vs. standing during the consecration. I would like some advice from other posters on these specific situations, plus on a third from my wedding which was not as recent:

  1. We went to mass at a beautiful church pilgrimage site, and noticed that there were no kneelers in the pews. Almost everybody remained standing but we kneeled down during the consecration. Was it wrong to make ourselves different from the rest of the congregation like that?

  2. A priest said a special teaching mass for a group of about 50 people, and invited us all to sit in the sanctuary instead of in the pews. Before the consecration, he explained that normally we kneel for the consecration, but that since there wasn’t any room, it was impractical for us to kneel, and it is more important that we all do the same thing. (We were sitting on chairs and it would have been quite a commotion for everyone to kneel down, involving moving chairs around etc.) I found it frustrating to be told not to kneel, but I obeyed, even though my conscience bothered me. Was it a sin to stand during the consecration?

  3. At my wedding, it didn’t occur to me until the ceremony was under way that kneeling for communion could be a big problem my bride and her wedding party due to their dresses. So we all remained standing even during the consecration. I felt really guilty but didn’t think it would be right to kneel when my bride was standing. Was this correct?

Thank you for your advice. I don’t have any strong opinion on this question and am just looking for what people think.

Unfortunately I don’t have an answer for you, but I am curious as well. I recently went to Mass at a Mission Parish that holds Mass in an elementary school gym, pending the building of a new church building.

I was surprised that everybody stood during the consecration, probably because the seating was not really conducive to kneeling (some on a hard gym floor, some on hard plastic bleachers)…I ‘went with the flow,’ which I assume was the ‘right’ thing to do, even though it felt weird not to be kneeling!

If standing for Consecration is a sin, then all Eastern Christians (Catholic and Orthodox) are going to hell.

I recall that, when Cardinal George first arrived in Chicago, he noted that there were no kneelers in the seminary chapel. He instructed the powers that be that everyone was to kneel for the consecration. They explained to him at some length the problems and costs of installing kneelers. He replied, " I didn’t say anything about kneelers. I just said everyone is to kneel." Somehow they got kneelers soon after.

in the first two cases, when in Rome
I have a personal hang up about the priest bringing people up into the sanctuary. When in that situation I express myself privately to the priest (this is often a retreat situation) but obey if he asks since for me that is the virtue I need to most cultivate.

For the wedding that is usually covered in the rehearsal, I assume you mean kneeling for the Eucharistic prayer, not reception of communion. Generally the bride and groom have portable kneelers, at least here. You did the best you could at the spur of the moment.

One reasonable reason to stand is that if you are physically unable to kneel.

The chapel at our Catholic college doesn’t have kneelers either. Many people kneel anyways.

"If standing for Consecration is a sin, then all Eastern Christians (Catholic and Orthodox) are going to hell. ":thumbsup:

Yea, we Maronites are in prety big trouble. Well, some of the older women whom were educated at Latin Rite educational insititutions do kneel, but it is not normative for the Orient as a whole. We have a different look at recieveing the Quorban, Eucharist, as being on our feet ready to meet Christ the bridgegrrom instead of bowing to Christ the King on our knees. Both are legitamate though!:cool:

my parish has masses at the nearby Catholic School auditorium. No kneelers there so everyone stands during the Eucharistic Prayer. I don’t go there often but do stand as with everyone else. Can sit if I have to.

Prie-dieux, I belive they’re called.

In a review of liturgical law for the Roman rite, our rite, the “General Instruction on the Roman Missal,” the Church explained that those at mass should kneel during the consecration, unless a good reason prevented this, such as health or lack of space. So I would think there was no problem if the bride does not kneel because of her wedding dress, or you to stand with her since you were marrying her, since this seems a good reason. (You can look this regulation up yourself by googling to GIRM. Go to the section “movements and posture”.)
A Vatican cardinal once said that the unity of the Church is important. But this unity is not the unity that occurs among those at a single mass, but the unity of the Church as a whole. He said this after hearing that some are saying that when a liturgical abuse occurs, all those at the mass should participate because unity during mass is needed. (Obviously, he was saying that liturgical abuses, actually, are against the unity of the Church, whatever else may be wrong about them.)
This all is not to speak of other rites in the Catholic Church, which have their own practices, all in good standing with the Church

The sin involved would not be standing or kneeling per se, but the sin of disobedience to the rightful Church authorities.

Like any sin, it would depend on intent

Just whom would this alleged sin fall on ?

I was visiting out of town this weekend and encountered a similar situation.

The mass was held in what is obviously a mission/start-up building, that had just the basics for a mass. Chairs were there but no kneelers.

I knelt even though everyone else was standing.

I have had it explained to me by others that if there are no kneelers present, then one may remain standing.

I have even been to other massess where just the opposite happens: while everyone else is kneeling, a few people are standing!

It seemed like my wife and I kneeled a lot at our wedding. We had a kneeler for two and no chairs. We kneeled through the readings and the homily.

We have the full compliment of kneelers and we use them. The thing that aggravates me is when the choir of our Sunday evening Mass stands up to sing the Great Amen and the leader raises a hand for “your turn to sing now” and the congregation all thinks it means stand up now. That spurs the altar servers to enter the sanctuary. My family remains kneeling.

As I posted on another thread:

GENERAL INSTRUCTION OF THE ROMAN MISSAL

  1. In the celebration of Mass the faithful form a holy people, a people whom God has made his own, a royal priesthood, so that they may give thanks to God and offer the spotless Victim not only through the hands of the priest but also together with him, and so that they may learn to offer themselves.[83] They should, moreover, endeavor to make this clear by their deep religious sense and their charity toward brothers and sisters who participate with them in the same celebration.

Thus,** they are to shun any appearance of individualism or division**, keeping before their eyes that they have only one Father in heaven and accordingly are all brothers and sisters to each other.

The heading of that chapter “The Duties and Ministries in the Mass”
tells us that we are to join each other with no one standing out .
The roles (duties) assigned to each are to be observed. The priest preforms his function, the server his, the readers note< plural> theirs, the deacon his.
You cannot apply this chapter to a directive on whether one stands or sits, that is addressed further in the document!

Read it for yourself: vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/ccdds/documents/rc_con_ccdds_doc_20030317_ordinamento-messale_en.html

CHAPTER III

The Duties and Ministries in the Mass

II. THE DUTIES OF THE PEOPLE OF GOD

  1. In the celebration of Mass the faithful form a holy people, a people whom God has made his own, a royal priesthood, so that they may give thanks to God and offer the spotless Victim not only through the hands of the priest but also together with him, and so that they may learn to offer themselves.[83] They should, moreover, endeavor to make this clear by their deep religious sense and their charity toward brothers and sisters who participate with them in the same celebration.

Thus, they are to shun any appearance of individualism or division, keeping before their eyes that they have only one Father in heaven and accordingly are all brothers and sisters to each other.

  1. Indeed, they form one body, whether by hearing the word of God, or by joining in the prayers and the singing, or above all by the common offering of Sacrifice and by a common partaking at the Lord’s table. This unity is beautifully apparent from the gestures and postures observed in common by the faithful.

But if you’re following what the priest asks, then you do not sin.

Clarifications have been issued for several situtations that would seem to fall generally under this principle, for example, kneeling for communion. The CDW responded that
: **

"…while this Congregation gave the recognitio

to the norm desired by the Bishops’ Conference of your country that people stand for Holy Communion, this was done on the condition that communicants who choose to kneel are not to be denied Holy Communion on these grounds. Indeed, the faithful should not be imposed upon nor accused of disobedience and of acting illicitly when they kneel to receive Holy Communion".
**

The existence of such clarifications would seem to indicate that your own bolded sentence is not to be seen as an absolutely rigid and inflexible rule as you seem to make it out to be.

Here’s another example:

**

Dubium: In many places, the faithful are accustomed to kneeling or sitting in personal prayer upon returning to their places after individually received Holy Communion during Mass. Is it the intention of the Missale Romanum, editio typica tertia, to forbid this practice?
Responsum: Negative, et ad mentem. The mens is that that the prescription of the Institutio Generalis Missalis Romani, no. 43, is intended, on one hand, to ensure within broad limits a certain uniformity of posture within the congregation for the various parts of the celebration of the Holy Mass, and on the other, to not regulate posture rigidly in such a way that those who wish to kneel or sit would no longer be free.
**** **Underlining emphasis mine

:shrug: I didn’t write the GIRM or interpret it. I only posted what it says.

Perhaps, we should disregard the rules that apply to us and keep judging priests. :shrug:

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