Expert Answer Forum

Tripping other communicants QUESTION from Marion Connell November 13, 2000 I wonder if other Catholics have experienced this problem: When I reach the head of the double wide Communion line during Mass, I pause and genuflect. On two separate occasions this year, the young men immediately behind me in line stumbled over my rear-extended genuflecting foot. I think they were tail-gating and not expecting me to stop and genuflect, and so I tripped them up. Is there a bumper sticker I can wear on my jacket: I brake for genuflection I don't want to repeat some of the utterances I have heard on these occasions, and I hate to be an occasion of sin for others. I'm considering giving up the practice.
Yours in Jesus
Marion Connell, T.O.P.
ANSWER by Mr. John Miskell on Wednesday, November 15, 2000 Dear Marion,
I've encountered this problem once and almost knocked the lady behind me to the floor. From that time on I'm extremely careful. Here are some of the things I do depending on the situation.
1. When the person ahead of the person ahead of me finishes receiving Communion and begins to walk away, the person ahead of me steps toward the priest. At that time I stop dead in my tracks and hold that position for a moment to ensure that the person behind is stopped. I then put my hand on the pew next to me (this body language warns those behind me that I'm getting ready to do something) and I genuflect as carefully as I can, trying not to extend my foot too far behind me. This works for my family and I quite well 2. When I get out of my pew and get into the aisle to go up for Communion I sometimes turn to tell the person behind me to be careful because I genuflect before receiving.
3. If there are multiple ministers giving Communion and people are crossing behind and in front of one another (lots of traffic) I make a reverent bow instead of a genuflection.
I never thought of the bumper-sticker but I think it might work, heheh. I hope these tips help.
In Christ,
John Miskell
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