From a reader:
I am a curate in a busy city centre parish in the UK. I have just been told by my Parish Priest that I should be flexible [?] and pastoral [?!?] at Children’s Masses and allow them to read the Gospel. When I said that the Church expects a Priest or Deacon to proclaim the Gospel he said that there was a Handbook on Children’s Masses (or similar) which made provision for this. I have never heard of this – “Didn’t they teach you that at seminary?” was the put down! I can find no reference to anything of the sort in the GIRM.
Didn’t they teach that parish priest in the seminary that to read the Gospel during Mass you have to be at least a deacon?
Am I getting this wrong?
I would ask to see that “Handbook”.
Is there a special permission for children to read the Gospel? I have never heard of such a thing.
I suppose people get blinded by the “cute” factor or sentimentalism, or the bent notion that “active participation” means that priests have to make lay people do what the ordained are supposed to do (which is the worst form of clericalism).
Liturgical abuse that involves children is a particularly vile abuse.