Author Topic: Catholic holding hands together while praying  (Read 8474 times)

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Offline Ortho_cat

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Catholic holding hands together while praying
« on: December 10, 2009, 09:39:41 AM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics).  

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 09:40:25 AM by Ortho_cat »

Offline Orthodox11

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2009, 10:30:31 AM »
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?

I haven't encountered it in the Eastern Orthodox Church. It's common in the Armenian Church though, but I'm assuming it's a crusader import (Salpy?).

Offline augustin717

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2009, 11:24:13 AM »
It is the feudal gesture of fealty . Not much part of the Eastern customs, unless probably imported.

Offline HandmaidenofGod

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2009, 11:39:06 AM »
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


I have heard of Catholic parish's having the faithful hold hands during the "Our Father."

I have never seen hand-holding of any type during an Orthodox service.
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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2009, 11:52:00 AM »
I think he's referring the practice of holding one's own hands together, palm to palm, with the thumbs crossed over like this:



rather than people holding the hand of their nearest neighbor like this:



« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 11:53:43 AM by Schultz »
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Offline HandmaidenofGod

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2009, 12:25:02 PM »
I think he's referring the practice of holding one's own hands together, palm to palm, with the thumbs crossed over like this:



Well then yes, I have seen that:

This was during "Our Father" at the Hierarchal Liturgy at my parish on Nov 8th. (See attachment)
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Offline samkim

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2009, 02:37:19 PM »
It must show up some where in the Christian east...

Seeing how it's also the way other easterners (Buddhists, Hindus, Animists, Shamanists, Shintoists) pray.
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Offline Rosehip

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2009, 04:26:23 PM »
I wonder if Christians borrowed the namaste gesture from the Hindus and Buddhists?
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Offline alexp4uni

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2009, 05:29:32 PM »
I wonder if Christians borrowed the namaste gesture from the Hindus and Buddhists?

The Malankara Church has done this form for a long time. The one form of the namaste way happens during the Kiss of Peace as opposed to Syriac and the Mediterranean custom. By clasping both hands between the other persons hands they are to pass it on. But this is different from the Portuguese import given to Indians in Qurbana waiting in line to receive communion with both hands in prayer position and afterwords walking back.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 05:30:49 PM by alexp4uni »

Offline samkim

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2009, 06:23:56 PM »
I wonder if Christians borrowed the namaste gesture from the Hindus and Buddhists?

The Malankara Church has done this form for a long time. The one form of the namaste way happens during the Kiss of Peace as opposed to Syriac and the Mediterranean custom. By clasping both hands between the other persons hands they are to pass it on.

I think Copts do something like this. If I'm right, then there doesn't seem to be a Hindu connection.

 Also, Rosehip, I think it's historically implausible to say that western Christians got the gesture from Indians...
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Offline Rosehip

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2009, 06:59:04 PM »
I think Augustin is likely correct in that praying with hands together (in the western church) mimicked the vassal petitioning his lord in medieval times. However, Hinduism certainly pre-dates Christianity and I have no doubts but that there were borrowed traditions. It seems this gesture is pretty common in many cultures.
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Offline mike

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2009, 07:29:05 PM »
I don't think there were any Hindu influences in the Greek-Latic culture.
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Offline Andrew21091

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2009, 07:41:19 PM »
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


I have heard of Catholic parish's having the faithful hold hands during the "Our Father."

This is true. Its one of those newer things that they do nowadays after Vat. II. It used to really bug my mom back in the day when we were Roman Catholic.

Offline Papist

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2009, 07:47:43 PM »
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


I have heard of Catholic parish's having the faithful hold hands during the "Our Father."

This is true. Its one of those newer things that they do nowadays after Vat. II. It used to really bug my mom back in the day when we were Roman Catholic.
Its actually not supposed to happen. Its not in the rubrics for the Novus Ordo.

And with that I have officially made it to 4000 posts!

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What does protokentrachos mean?
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 07:49:23 PM by Papist »
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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2009, 09:48:46 PM »
And with that I have officially made it to 4000 posts!

Congrats!

Offline Salpy

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2009, 10:02:14 PM »
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?

I haven't encountered it in the Eastern Orthodox Church. It's common in the Armenian Church though, but I'm assuming it's a crusader import (Salpy?).

I have always been taught that we are supposed to hold our hands together like that during the recitation of the Nicene Creed and when singing a particular hymn during matins.  The matins hymn is Park Ee Partsoonts, which starts about a minute into the video linked in reply 120 in the OO music thread:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,9840.msg214552.html#msg214552

The right thumb is supposed to go over the left when you hold your hands like that.

Putting the hands together like that symbolizes unity in faith.

During other times of prayer, the tradition is to hold ones hands in front, palms up.  That's supposed to represent humility.  At least that is what I've been told.

It's not uncommon to see Armenians holding the palms together all the time during prayer, not just during the Creed or Park Ee Partsoonts.  I think that is a Catholic influence.

Offline Entscheidungsproblem

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2009, 10:05:58 PM »
What does protokentrachos mean?

I think something like 'senior centurion'.
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Offline Ortho_cat

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2009, 10:09:36 PM »


During other times of prayer, the tradition is to hold ones hands in front, palms up.  That's supposed to represent humility.  At least that is what I've been told.


Now this I see all the time being done by our priest during the reading of the Psalms, especially. I have yet to see any layperson try it.  Perhaps they think they might "stand out"  :-\

OTOH, I have noticed some of the laypeople using the hands-together praying position during consecration, when they kneel on the pew kneelers. Do you think that's western influence??  ::)
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 10:11:54 PM by Ortho_cat »

Offline ChristusDominus

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #18 on: December 11, 2009, 12:51:56 AM »

 
1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?

I remember as boy being taught that you had to have your hands in this position when recieving Holy Communion, especially First Holy Communion.



What Salpy said does sound very Western, hands together during consecration or in private prayer while kneeling.
As far as I know, it is a sign of piety and humility. Reverance, if you will.
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Offline Ortho_cat

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2009, 02:17:52 AM »
ChristusDominus, are you RC?
« Last Edit: December 11, 2009, 02:18:16 AM by Ortho_cat »

Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #20 on: December 11, 2009, 02:25:24 AM »

Offline ChristusDominus

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2009, 02:32:32 AM »
ChristusDominus, are you RC?
Yes I am.
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Offline alexp4uni

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2009, 02:40:50 AM »
I wonder if Christians borrowed the namaste gesture from the Hindus and Buddhists?

The Malankara Church has done this form for a long time. The one form of the namaste way happens during the Kiss of Peace as opposed to Syriac and the Mediterranean custom. By clasping both hands between the other persons hands they are to pass it on.

I think Copts do something like this. If I'm right, then there doesn't seem to be a Hindu connection.

 Also, Rosehip, I think it's historically implausible to say that western Christians got the gesture from Indians...

Peculiarly enough, the Assyrians of the Church of the East have a custom as well that you maybe talking about. They take one of their hands and clasp onto it then proceed to touch the other persons hand the same way. It's as if their handing something to each other during the whole of the service and kissing it on their lips end the gesture.

It still doesn't answer this question because both Portugese and East Syrians were under their influence.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2009, 02:43:29 AM by alexp4uni »

Offline mersch

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #23 on: December 19, 2009, 12:21:43 PM »
I think he's referring the practice of holding one's own hands together, palm to palm, with the thumbs crossed over like this:



rather than people holding the hand of their nearest neighbor like this:





That is the way I was taught to pray, grew up in a Catholic/Baptist house, also at the Baptist church, we would hold hands when praying together in small groups.(I attended both as a child)

Offline Alonso_castillo

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #24 on: January 04, 2010, 08:01:17 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics).  

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


1 Tim 2:8

It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.

Now, in Mexico this is not very usual, only in the masses for youth people, mainly in the "Our Father" praying, it is used as a symbol of fraternity. with out further consecuences.
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Offline ignatius

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #25 on: January 05, 2010, 04:40:40 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics).  

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


1 Tim 2:8

It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.

Now, in Mexico this is not very usual, only in the masses for youth people, mainly in the "Our Father" praying, it is used as a symbol of fraternity. with out further consecuences.

Our parish of St. Michael's 'join hands during the Our Father' also. I don't mind it at all really. I'm not sure why the shock and horror over this?
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Offline Papist

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2010, 04:59:20 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics).  

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


1 Tim 2:8

It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.

Now, in Mexico this is not very usual, only in the masses for youth people, mainly in the "Our Father" praying, it is used as a symbol of fraternity. with out further consecuences.

Our parish of St. Michael's 'join hands during the Our Father' also. I don't mind it at all really. I'm not sure why the shock and horror over this?
I think that its seen as a problem because it is not in the rubrics. The missal does not call for it.
My posts no longer forum here.

Offline ignatius

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #27 on: January 06, 2010, 04:03:19 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics).  

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


1 Tim 2:8

It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.

Now, in Mexico this is not very usual, only in the masses for youth people, mainly in the "Our Father" praying, it is used as a symbol of fraternity. with out further consecuences.

Our parish of St. Michael's 'join hands during the Our Father' also. I don't mind it at all really. I'm not sure why the shock and horror over this?
I think that its seen as a problem because it is not in the rubrics. The missal does not call for it.

Should there be 'no' room for spontaneity within the family of the Faithful?
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 04:04:27 PM by ignatius »
St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”

Offline Papist

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #28 on: January 06, 2010, 04:32:54 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics).  

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


1 Tim 2:8

It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.

Now, in Mexico this is not very usual, only in the masses for youth people, mainly in the "Our Father" praying, it is used as a symbol of fraternity. with out further consecuences.

Our parish of St. Michael's 'join hands during the Our Father' also. I don't mind it at all really. I'm not sure why the shock and horror over this?
I think that its seen as a problem because it is not in the rubrics. The missal does not call for it.

Should there be 'no' room for spontaneity within the family of the Faithful?
I think we have to be careful. The Liturgy is for the entire Church not just a small group of Catholics in the western United Staes.
My posts no longer forum here.

Offline Alonso_castillo

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #29 on: January 06, 2010, 07:46:23 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics). 

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


1 Tim 2:8

It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.

Now, in Mexico this is not very usual, only in the masses for youth people, mainly in the "Our Father" praying, it is used as a symbol of fraternity. with out further consecuences.

Our parish of St. Michael's 'join hands during the Our Father' also. I don't mind it at all really. I'm not sure why the shock and horror over this?
I think that its seen as a problem because it is not in the rubrics. The missal does not call for it.

Should there be 'no' room for spontaneity within the family of the Faithful?
I think we have to be careful. The Liturgy is for the entire Church not just a small group of Catholics in the western United Staes.

Priests should then be more careful about this, I heard also that in the Eucharistical Liturgy people should remain knealed all the long from consecration until just before Our Father, not just until the proclamation of our faith mistery. Lets review Vatican II documents.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 07:47:29 PM by Alonso_castillo »
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Offline Papist

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #30 on: January 06, 2010, 07:50:35 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics). 

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


1 Tim 2:8

It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.

Now, in Mexico this is not very usual, only in the masses for youth people, mainly in the "Our Father" praying, it is used as a symbol of fraternity. with out further consecuences.

Our parish of St. Michael's 'join hands during the Our Father' also. I don't mind it at all really. I'm not sure why the shock and horror over this?
I think that its seen as a problem because it is not in the rubrics. The missal does not call for it.

Should there be 'no' room for spontaneity within the family of the Faithful?
I think we have to be careful. The Liturgy is for the entire Church not just a small group of Catholics in the western United Staes.

Priests should then be more careful about this, I heard also that in the Eucharistical Liturgy people should remain knealed all the long from consecration until just before Our Father, not just until the proclamation of our faith mistery. Lets review Vatican II documents.

Well I think that Pope Benedict is working for liturgical reform.
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Offline militantsparrow

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #31 on: January 06, 2010, 09:26:51 PM »
I notice when I watch mass sometimes on tele that often the clergy put their hands together in the standard praying position for much of the service.   Also, I see a couple of the laypeople do it sometimes, but mostly clergy (and monastics).  

My first question is directed towards the Catholics present, my second is to the Orthodox.

1. When did this gesture come into use and what is the symbolism of this gesture?
2. Is this strictly a Latin gesture, or is it also done in Eastern Orthodoxy?


The whole Mass is the greatest of all prayers so I fold my hands throughout. I think many Catholics do this, but I'm not aware of any particular requirement to do so or a restriction against it. Holding each other's hand is however "discouraged"--whatever that means.
"Yeah, the sparrow hath found an house..." -Psalm 84:3

Offline militantsparrow

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #32 on: January 06, 2010, 09:33:16 PM »
Well I think that Pope Benedict is working for liturgical reform.

Yes. Thankfully so. But folding our own hands in prayer during the Mass is not going to be outlawed. The Mass is a prayer (the greatest of all IMO). All priests and deacons (as far as I've seen) fold their hands as well through out the Mass--at least while standing. I'm not aware of a requirement to do so but it does appear to be the norm.

Do you agree, Papist?
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Offline militantsparrow

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #33 on: January 06, 2010, 09:35:43 PM »
As far as I know, it is a sign of piety and humility. Reverance, if you will.

Yes. This is my understanding as well.
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Offline Papist

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Re: Catholic holding hands together while praying
« Reply #34 on: January 07, 2010, 01:31:06 PM »
Well I think that Pope Benedict is working for liturgical reform.

Yes. Thankfully so. But folding our own hands in prayer during the Mass is not going to be outlawed. The Mass is a prayer (the greatest of all IMO). All priests and deacons (as far as I've seen) fold their hands as well through out the Mass--at least while standing. I'm not aware of a requirement to do so but it does appear to be the norm.

Do you agree, Papist?
Yup. Although the laity are not required to fold their hands during Liturgy I don't think that there is anything wrong with it because it most certainly does not disrupt anyone else or any part of the Liturgy.
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