¡Vaya lío! Another church gets a new Communion rail!

The other day I posted about the installation of a new Communion rail in the Church of St. Mary in Pine Bluff, WI.  HERE

Now I read that a new rail will be installed in St. Joseph’s Church in Macon, GA.

From Southern Orders (excerpt):

The unanimous consensus was conveyed to Bishop Hartmayer [in the diocese of Savannah] and he approved of the decision. Then a small fund raiser was carried out and as if God Himself endorsed our plan, out of the blue a large, large bequest was given to us in a Last Will and Testament of a wonderful parishioner who requested her bequest be used for sanctuary improvements only!

All this took place within a year! And yesterday, March 14th, 2014, almost ten years after the decision was made to remove the altar railing, Bishop Hartmayer signed the contract to have the construction begin.

The extension of the floor should start in about a couple of weeks. The marble and brass gates will take longer to fabricate but I pray it will be installed in the next six months. But the floor will be ready to receive it when it arrives.


Fr. Z Kudos to Bp. Hartmayer, and to the VG there, and to the pastor Fr. McDonald.

This, dear readers, is the way we need to go.   This does more for the New Evangelization than any number of initiatives you might dream up.

Don’t be shaken.  Don’t be anxious or downhearted.  Do not flag.  Do not waiver.

¡Vaya lío!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. CrimsonCatholic says:

    Hopefully, they will be electrified soon as well. ;)

  2. iPadre says:

    Beautiful! The momentum is continuing! THIS is the work of the Holy Spirt, the beginning of the New Springtime of faith.

  3. Lutgardis says:

    God bless that parishioner for being specific about using the bequest for the sanctuary only!

  4. wmeyer says:

    Fr. McDonald has worked long and well to catechize his flock. Besides the new altar rail, other fruits of this work include his monthly celebration of an EF Mass. His blog is on my list of those I choose to read often.

  5. SimonDodd says:

    I tend to think that it underscores a point that I’ve made here before (e.g. https://wdtprs.com/2013/06/get-on-with-the-work-we-ourselves-have-to-do/#comment-413056): The reform of the reform is necessarily the clergy’s work. The laity can help facilitate that work, but we can’t make the pastor decide to install an altar rail, any more than we can make him celebrate the extraordinary form or ditch the guitars or what-have-you. It is too often forgotten that the Tractarians did not simply advocate for ideas—many of their leaders were clergymen, in a position to carry out the reforms they proposed.

  6. acardnal says:

    Looks great . . . and just in time to celebrate the church’s patron saint this Wednesday, the Solemnity of Saint Joseph. I hope they have a beautiful holy Mass that day.

  7. momoften says:

    We are in the process of installing a Communion Rail at our Parish as well. But the question I have is, what is the significance of the veiling of the Communion Rail? I have some ideas, some have to do with
    the history of veiling the Sanctuary to designate the sanctity of that area of the church, and another yet to capture any particles from the Blessed Sacrament during Communion. Would it be a combination of the 2? I know my Dad can remember flipping the veils over when they served and
    using a paten…..

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  9. WGS says:

    The altar rail cloth you speak of is also known as a “houseling cloth”. – from the Anglo Saxon word for host – It serves symbolically as an extension of the linens on the altar and practically as a receiver of sacred particles missed by the paten. Apparently its common use was part of the standardization after the Council of Trent.

  10. kneeler says:

    St. Andrew the Apostle in Gladstone, MO is another Latin Rite parish to install an altar rail! Yippee! From what I have observed, the reception is tremendous, for a parish that has never had one. 95% + received kneeling and on the tongue the last time I was there, and the parking lot and pews are full.

  11. Mightnotbeachristiantou says:

    Altar rails are nice, but what about modern churches that are not made for rails? You know the plain whitewall churches.

  12. SimonDodd says:

    Mightnotbeachristiantou, to paraphrase Ra’s al-Ghul: The architecture is nothing; the will to act is everything.

  13. Legisperitus says:

    I think it was the late Frank Morriss who wrote that if Catholics at Mass one day could be shown a brief vision of what is actually happening on the altar, Communion rails would go up everywhere overnight.

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