Receiving Communion While Kneeling

I just started to receive communion kneeling on Holy Thursday ,I found it more appropriate to the Lord who is present in the Host. Does anyone else receive Communion while kneeling

In my parish, we use the rail and receive kneeling every other week. On the opposite weeks, we receive under both forms and standing.

Don’t be surprised if this thread gets shut down. There’s currently a prohibition on discussing lay gestures at Mass. Maybe this is not precisely a gesture, but, anyway, take a look at the sticky at the top of the page.

And welcome to CAF!


when I attend a Latin Rite church (both OF & EF) I do kneel as well. but ive also been refused afew times too. personaly I think Kneeling to recieve is (for me anyway) the most spiritual way to recieve the Lord’s Body…however the Looks I have goten from certain priests and Laymen alike have ruined the Soleminty of the Moment on more than one occasion…but I keep doing it anyway.

there are great resons why both standign and kneeling are good. and the more people kneel to recieve the less stange it will be to the adverage catholic and hopfuly in time neither Priest or layperson alike will think anythign off it.

Yes, I do when I can. Which is mostly at the TLM. There is a Dominican parish in Columbus, OH that I attend when visiting family where they do Mass in the OF but you receive kneeling at the altar rail.

I would love to start kneeling at my regular Mass but I think with the “communion traffic” the way it is, it might just cause a scene. So I receive normally on the tongue while standing.

For the first four years after my conversion I assisted at a Tridentine Mass. Everyone knelt – no exceptions.
For the past 8 -9 years I’ve assisted at a “N.O.” Mass and have knelt every time. I felt a little awkward at first but I guess everybody is used to it now.
I know that some friends from a TLM parish also will kneel (last I heard anyway) when they attend my parish.
For us it’s not a problem.
Growing up an Anglican also has influenced me – always kneeling for communion.
I cannot see myself standing to receive Jesus.

Normally I go with what’s customary at a particular church. However, I always receive on the tongue - after an experience which I need not recount yet again here on CAF! If it is commonplace for the communicants to kneel at the altar rails, then I am happy to do the same - and I would like to see this method of reception become commonplace. Sometimes there are altar rails but people just line up along them - in such cases I like to use the rails and kneelers for their intended purpose and kneel to receive! If the custom is to simply queue up and stand to receive, then I do likewise. Aussie_Melkite mentioned having been refused Communion for kneeling to receive - and I know others have had this experience too. A minister of the Eucharist is not permitted to refuse Communion to a member of the faithful because they wish to receive the Body of Christ in this way. If it does happen, I would suggest bringing Redemptionis Sacramentum to their attention - this very issue is addressed there.

Those receiving Holy Communion from our Holy Father do so kneeling and on the tongue… I think he is trying to send a message ;). Personally, I follow the custom of the local parish (as far as standing or kneeling goes), but always receive on the tongue. My local cathedral allows for both (those who wish to receive kneeling line up at the sides and do so at the altar rail, those who wish to receive standing line up along the centre aisle…)

I always receive kneeling except when I visit one liberal parish where the priest forbade me from doing so. (yes yes I know he “can’t” do that but I will respect his wishes out of respect for his position)


Interesting. Do you think the Holy Father should “get used to it”, if someone chose to exercise their “right” to follow the US norm of standing, or their “right” to the option of hand when receiving from him in the US?


Lux, you of all people know that the Pope is not bound by either Canon or Liturguical Law, including local Norms… Therefore no one has a “right” to stand. He is superior in Law to the Congregation for Divine Worship

Priests, Bishops and lay minsters ARE however, not superior to the CDWDS, and must therefore accept and act on it’s rulings.

Yes, this is the current thought, but I really would like a black & white ruling on this whole right vs obedience issue. I am not looking for a rehash of everything which has been said, just a proper course of action, when someone chooses an approved posture which is not following the instructions of the celebrant. (My thought is obey and issue a respectful formal complaint)


Kneeling is more reverent than standing and we should show the greatest reverence when receiving the Lord. Many people at the NO Mass I attend walk away with the Consecrated Host in their hand and casually place it in their mouth mid-stride.

Personally , I go with the flow of the chruch. If i am at an NO church then i stand but if the EMHC is shorter than me i receieve in the hand. Otherwise i recieve on the tongue. i don’t normally have this problem too much anymore since i go to a church where we use the rails.

Also kneeling at a church that doesn’t have the rail can cause some problems because peole aren’t expecting it and might trip over you!

When I was a kid thats how I started to do it. But I know because of the shortage of Priests it has changed. But it doesn’t make a difference to me. It does not change what it is and what it means to me in my heart. Jesus knows I would gladly kneel to him because he knows my heart. Thats all that counts, what’s in your heart, and what we have done and what we have failed to do. That’s what I think of when I go to communion, and I am too busy asking for forgiveness and thanking God for considering me worthy to receive this great Grace from him, and to make me a better person.:smiley:

for me my most serious spiritual struggles lie in the area of obedience, so obedience to the direction of the pastor and local bishop, as long as it does not conflict with Church law, is of more importance to me personally, so no, I do not kneel. When they restor communion rails, which were designed for this purpose, so an elderly or infirm person can help themselves kneel and rise again, I will certainly kneel again. To do so know would be disruptive as it would take two strong altar boys to help me up.

That is the right way to received the holy communion, and take it by mouth, but i have seen people take in the hand, why are the priest letting this to happen?

I realize I’m splicing two sentences together, but I’ve puzzled by people who receive from an EMHC on their tongue.

The thing is, receiving in hand while standing did break Church laws. Our obedience is to the Church Christ founded for He is the way, truth, and life. When obedience to a man whether that be a priest or bishop supercedes the Church then we are in danger of falling away into a sect or cult. Pope Paul VI, John Paul II, and Benedict XVI along with many other popes, saints, and theologians warn against receiving CITH while standing. The indult was probably granted from pressure due to the threat of schism in Europe. The norm for receiving the Blessed Sacrament is kneeling and on tongue. To which should you be more obedient, an indult or a norm?

Wait until you’re 85 years old with arthritis or with a walker. :wink:

If receiving communion while kneeling is a “should do” or “must do” in some people’s minds…I’m not being argumentative here, just putting this out there for an answer…why does not the priest, deacon or bishop take the body and blood when kneeling?

Why does the lay people not wash their hand in holy water before giving out the communion, just like the priest washes his hands before touching the communion?

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