No kneelers

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: Lately, I have attended Mass at a couple of places where they did not have kneelers installed. I won’t say the archdiocese but it would be a surprise to many. At any rate, I know the one church I attend people know and were taught that you stand and when it’s time for the consecration one bows when the priest genuflects. The other places, some stand, some kneel. To me, it’s either we’re all doing one gesture together in unity and not having everyone do their own thing. Furthermore, if you’re in front of someone who chooses to kneel, it’s rather uncomfortable. I am not sure how they can see anyway!

What do you think? Is there a proper liturgical protocol for this? I am sure it holds true for outdoor Masses and so forth. More so, some people simply can’t kneel so they sit anyway but with everyone standing it does give them the option to remain standing. Similarly, for musicians when kneelers are in place in a church but not the music area, and there is an ensemble per se,  holding their guitar, I think they should at least bow when the priest genuflects during the consecration. As for musicians standing and singing for the Memorial Acclamation, if the congregation can’t sing the Memorial Acclamation and Great Amen without support, we have a bigger challenge on hand but that’s for another post. 🙂  Thanks for your continued ministry. 


A: Here’s the quote from GIRM 43. People who stand for the eucharistic prayer are to make a profound bow on the two occasions when the priest genuflects.

In the dioceses of the United States of America, they should kneel beginning after the singing or recitation of the Sanctus(Holy, Holy, Holy) until after the Amen of the Eucharistic Prayer, except when prevented on occasion by ill health, or for reasons of lack of space, of the large number of people present, or for another reasonable cause. However, those who do not kneel ought to make a profound bow when the Priest genuflects after the Consecration. The faithful kneel after the Agnus Dei(Lamb of God) unless the Diocesan Bishop determines otherwise.