Kneeling during the penitential act

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q:  Liturgical question:

We have had a custom of kneeling during the penitential act during Lent. The custom looks like this: After the greeting, the priest moves from the presider’s chair to the front sanctuary steps. He then kneels facing the altar. The assembly kneels along with him in their pews. After silence, we recite the Confiteor and then chant the Kyrie. Afterwards, the priest walks back to the presider’s chair to pray the Collect. Do the rubrics allow for such a custom? Does this fit under the guise of Progressive Solemnity?

I must admit, I am not sure the intention of the priest kneeling at the front of the sanctuary facing the altar as opposed to staying in place at the chair. Perhaps to be more in unity with the faithful.

Thanks for your help with this.


A:  Logical as your practice sounds, GIRM 43 never envisions it. The rubrics are actually parsimonious when it comes to kneeling. I guess even during Lent, the missal treats the penitential act as a necessary though less significant introductory piece.