Fr. Bux on the manner of reception of Holy Communion

The great Fr. Nicola Bux has excellent comments about the reception of Holy Communion.  They are posted (back on 20 July) on the Italian language site Pontifex.Roma.

He makes the observation that reception of Holy Communion standing is not necessarily bad.  It can be reverent, especially when received with a proper understanding, signs of reverence, head coverings for women, etc.  But often it seems as if people are queuing for buffet.

Furthermore, people often go to Communion rather mechanically, without a sense of what they are about or what Communion is.

Reception of Holy Communion kneeling could be a real help for a return to greater understanding and devotion.

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  1. RichR says:

    There is something to be said for waiting for Our Lord as we kneel, rather than Him waiting for us to queue up.

  2. archambt says:

    I’ve come much to the same conclusion. I really do want to kneel at Communion, and if I were more dexterous I probably would. Unfortunately, Holy Communion can be a source of anxiety whether standing or kneeling- which side will the priest be on?, will there be Eucharistic Ministers?, Would it be rude to go into the priest line? Will the priest actually make me use my hands?, etc. The old rite makes this so much easier.

  3. pjsandstrom says:

    Aside from Baroque time practice why should it be that only the clergy are ‘permitted’ or ‘normally expected’ to receive Communion standing? Are the laity ‘lesser beings’ than the ‘clergy’ before the Lord?

  4. pjsandstrom says:

    As a continuation, in fact it is only in the Roman Rite that the practice of Communion kneeling is ‘encouraged’ for the laity — at least in the ‘extraordinary usage’.

  5. MichaelJ says:


    Some could argue that by virtue of their ordination, the sacrifices they make, and by the special Graces provided, Priest can be considered “greater beings” than the laity.

    I am sure this would spark a lively debate, but I do not think anyone could possibly disagree that the laity are certainly “lesser beings” than He who they presume to receive.

  6. JayneK says:

    Men in Holy Orders have a different relationship with the Eucharist than lay people. There is nothing incongruous about the two groups adopting different postures. But then, I don’t have a problem with thinking of myself as a “lesser being” than the clergy. Apparently that was St.Francis of Assissi’s view too.

    I started receiving while kneeling a while ago and I understand what you mean about the feelings of anxiety at OF Masses. I have noticed that it has become less over time, although one of the things I like about attending EF is that I don’t have to worry about it at all. Anyhow, I encourage anyone who prefers to receive kneeling to persevere in spite of any anxiety. It will get better.

  7. Kneeling before God is the best reminder of Who He is and who we are. It is a physical sign of worship and adoration, which is not given to humans. Many get hassled by priests and EMHCs for trying to kneel, but that is your right as a Catholic. Standing is part of the Protestantization of reception, as is receiving in the hand, which was long banned before the Protestant Reformation. No one can override the right to kneel from Rome.

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