From the Pastor:
Bishop Perez recently sent out a letter regarding the liturgical posture for the Communion Rite. I will include the entire letter in next week’s bulletin. Some highlights are:
“When considering the postures we may have observed during Mass over the course of our lives, we must remain ever conscious that ‘liturgical services are not private functions but are celebrations of the Church…, the holy people united and organized under the authority of the bishops. Therefore, liturgical services pertain to the whole Body of the Church’.
For this reason, the General Instruction of the Roman Missal, third typical edition has laid down normative postures for the celebration of Mass. ‘A common bodily posture, to be observed by all those taking part, is a sign of the unity of the members of the Christian community gathered together for the Sacred Liturgy, for it expresses the intentions and spiritual attitude of the participants and also foster them.’ Likewise, a lack of uniformity can serve as a sign of disunity or promote a sense of individualism.
After consultation with the Presbyteral Council and the Diocesan Liturgical Commission, I have elected to retain our current Communion Rite posture policy, first promulgated in 2003, which reinforces the universal Church’s policy of standing for the singing of the Communion Hymn, during the distribution and reception of Holy Communion. Once the last person has received Holy Communion, the Communion Hymn should end, and the faithful may kneel or sit for private prayer. The faithful should not be required to stand for the reposition of the Blessed Sacrament or the purification of vessels.”
Our parish has implemented the policy as required by Bishop Pilla from the very beginning of this policy. There are a few people at each Mass who kneel down during the “Lamb of God”. Bishop Perez exhorts everyone at Mass to follow the authorized procedure for the sake of unity, and not to give a sign of disunity or individualism by disobeying his policy. I pray that we will all take Bishop Perez’ words to heart. This policy will go into effect for all parishes beginning on Divine Mercy Sunday next month.