Vatican Breaks Its Silence On Kneeling For Communion In The USA
published 10 September 2014 by Jeff Ostrowski
VER since I confirmed that our Mass texts are copyrighted and sold by various entities (even non-Catholic ones) we’ve been receiving tons of mail. Outraged Catholics are wondering how a practice so wrong continues.
A similar case can be seen in kneeling for Communion in the USA. Here’s what the Vatican said in 2003:
“…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.” (source)
Still, some priests continue to abuse those who kneel for Holy Communion.
Here in Texas, I’ve witnessed such abuse several times. I clearly remember an incident two years ago, when a young child knelt down to receive Communion. The priest yelled, “Get up! Don’t kneel. We’re on a journey! We’re on a journey!” I was horrified, and this incident left a weird feeling in the back of my throat.
AS WE’VE MENTIONED, the Church in the United States has recently clarified its position—pardon the pun!—on kneeling for Communion (SEE BELOW), but I have doubts whether this will end the persecutions. Years ago, my friend wrote to Rome about the illicit sale of indulgenced texts. The Vatican responded that his concerns were totally correct, but we must be patient. As Aurelio Porfiri noted, Rome usually moves at a very slow pace.
For the record, here’s what the USCCB said in 2012:
No. 160 of the GIRM states clearly there that the “norm” established for the United States for reception of Holy Communion is standing. In the 2003 GIRM, it stated that no one should be refused Communion if they kneel, but that afterward they should be properly catechized. In the current edition, the exhortation to catechesis is removed and the exception to the norm of standing is left to the discretion of the faithful: “unless an individual member of the faithful wishes to receive Communion while kneeling.” The Instruction Redemptionis Sacramentum, no. 91, is then cited.
Source: BCDW Newsletter, January 2012
I’ve been told that, as a Cardinal, Pope Francis served on the Congregation for Divine Worship, but nobody has been able to confirm which years he served. It would be interesting to know whether he was there for the 2002-2003 rulings on kneeling for Communion. I don’t expect media folks will care too much about the facts, because they seem too busy fabricating misinformed nonsense about Pope Francis.