Expert Answer Forum
Proper way during processional at Mass QUESTION from Jose Nilo B. Bulao December 3, 2000 Dear Sir/Madam:
Greetings in Christ's Name!
I am the president of the Pool of Readers in our Parish.
During Mass, at the processional, the priest together with the Eucharistic ministers, lectors, and acolytes genuflect in front of altar. Then the priest goes to the altar and we proceed to our respective places. As the priest kisses the altar (at this time we are already on our places) we bow our heads facing the altar. This is our usual practice. However, a member of the Eucharistic Ministry introduced something new. He said that after we have genuflected (together with the priest) we should remain standing in front of the altar and wait for the priest to kiss the altar and after he had kissed the altar, then we can proceed to our respective places.
Which is proper, our usual practice or this new one?
Thank you very much,
Jose Nilo B. Bulao (from the Philippines)
ANSWER by Mr. John Miskell on December 4, 2000 Dear Jose,
Mabuhay! Azawa ko ai Bicolana.
Your usual practice appears to be the norm. I've taken the following from The Ceremonies of the Modern Roman Rite.
#249. On arrival before the altar, those who are not carrying anything bow deeply (or genuflect if the tabernacle is in the sanctuary). If the lector carries the Book of the Gospels, he or she reverently places it on the altar. The celebrant goes to the altar and kisses it at the center, placing both hands on the surface and joining them when he stands upright. It seems preferable to kiss the altar from the side where he will celebrate. (The deacon also kisses the altar, after placing the Book of the Gospels on it.) In Christ, John Miskell
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