Wednesday, 31 August 2011

A small gift for Archbishop Conti

This is Archbishop Mario Conti of Glasgow where any priest with a desire to conform with the traditional liturgical practices as practiced by the Holy Father is apt to be met with a Glaswegian kiss (aka a headbut). Hence, any traditional priest brave enough to comment on goings on in this diocese, does so anonymously.

Now Archbishop Conti is 77, which places him two years past his sell-by date. Let us pray fervently that the Holy See will appoint a suitably devout and orthodox man in his place - Glasgow deserves a break!

In the meantime, Archbishop Conti continues to contradict the ethos established by Pope Benedict. His Grace has now advised his priests that Holy Communion should be given into the hand of the standing faithful. We all know that to be wrong - the ruling is clear, those who wish to receive kneeling and by mouth are free to do so.

So, as a farewell gift to Archbishop Conti, here is a Cardinal, the great Cardinal Raymond Burke speaking on the subject.


  1. What possible reason could the Archbishop have for ordering priests to administer the Eucharist exclusively in the hand and to standing parishioners? Is he just trying to show everyone who's boss? Hopefully he won't be the boss for much longer.

  2. Can you post a link to a report of this?

  3. Berenike - am in untrodden territory, see the post...God bless.

  4. Patricius, thanks, I did so before I posted. Although he has softened his stance you still cannot get away from the fact that the Archbishop advised (or exhorted) his priests to go the route of standing and by mouth.

  5. Sorry, I assumed the link was to something about Cardinal Burke!

  6. Your post states that” His Grace has now advised his priests that Holy Communion should be given into the hand of the standing faithful”. I read the link you posted and whilst it mentions that Archbishop Conti believes people should receive standing, I failed to see anything about him requiring, or even exhorting, people to receive Communion in the hand. Did I miss a link? Let us not add coals to this already well-stoked fire.

    Personally, sometimes I kneel and at other times I stand, but always exercise my right to receive in the hand as it gives me a moment to contemplate Who I am receiving before raising my hand to my mouth. We must also be careful to refrain from broad statements such as “kneeling is more reverent” as our Eastern Rite brothers and sisters always receive standing.

  7. Parepidemos and Patricius, here is what Archbishop Conti stated:
    "There are also new instructions with regard to our postures during Mass which reflect the universal custom of the Church as set down within the Missal itself. We have been more used to kneeling than standing during some parts of the Mass, whereas in most other countries, the tradition of standing has been adhered to more faithfully.....

    ....It is also from a standing position that we should make our sign of reverence before we receive Holy Communion, approaching the altar in a dignified procession".
    Pretty clear to me. In the Roman church (Parepidemos) I consider it definitely more reverent to kneel when receiving. The "I" is meant in all humility. Many others would agree.

  8. Richard, Thank you for taking the time to respond. I agree that there are many who regard kneeling as being a personally more reverential posture and completely support their (and by extension, your) right to receive Communion in this manner. However, many others in the Roman Rite prefer to stand, and this is also licit. You and I agree that no one should be forced to stand; I hope you will also agree that, conversely, no one should be forced to kneel. The purpose of me referring to Eastern Rite Catholics was simply to illustrate that not all Catholics have a tradition of kneeling for Communion or consider it appropriate. I believe that, all too often, those of us in the Latin branch of Catholicism forget our Eastern Rite brothers and sisters who have legitimate practices quite different from those of our own.

    I had already read the pastoral letter from Archbishop Conti and that is why I was puzzled by your statement that he said Communion should be given in the hand when clearly there is no such content in his letter. May I ask where you heard that the Archbishop said such a thing?

  9. Parapedimos, thank you. The story is carried on quite a few blogs including Holy Smoke.
    Fr Z carries a fisked version of ++ Conti's letter which is where I took the extracts from.
    As the Holy Father demonstrates his desire quite clearly for the host to be given to those kneeling I feel it is encumbent on all Roman Catholics to follow suit.
    Standing encourages a lack of respect as can be seen by the general breakdown in behaviour in church today (at OF Masses). No genuflections, talking at full volume and generally behaving in a loutish manner (not unusual to see people chewing gum as they go up to stand to receive the Body of Christ).
    I understand your comments regarding Orthodox churches, I would not wish to comment on their practice.
    God bless.

  10. Hi Mr. Collins. I was really interested in your reply to parepidimos when he asked about your comment that Abp Conti had said people should receive Communion by hand. You cite Fr Z’s blog -but Fr Z doesn't say the Abp told folk to receive by hand - probably because the Abp’s letter itself doesn't say anything at all about Communion by hand. My question is why did you accuse the Abp of saying this when it’s obvious that he didn’t? The letter is available on the net so it's easy to check.
    The other thing is about parepidimos’s comment about Eastern Rite Catholics and you replied you didn’t wish to comment on the practises of Orthodox churches. Please, please, please…we are NOT Orthodox. We are Eastern Rite CATHOLICS in full communion with the Pope of Rome. Your illustrates the very thing that bothers parepidemos - Latin Rite Catholics think they’re the only Catholics around - and we find that really insulting. It's doubly insulting when fellow (Latin Rite) Catholics make silly statements saying that standing to receive is disrepectful or that celibacy is an integral part of being a priest. No wonder the Orthodox regard us with derision. God bless.

    Parepidemos (παρεπίδημος): a sojourner. Interesting choice of name.

  11. Chris, apologies for my wrong terminology re the Eastern Rites Church.Please visit Mundabor's blog for more on the subject, I think it bears out what I have put in my post (as do Archbishop Conti's words which I have already quoted).
    I really cannot comment on your bit about Catholics believing that we are the only ones around, I have not come across that misconception before.
    Finally, of course standing is disrespectful (in the Roman Church)and I do not believe that you are in a position to contradict that point.

  12. Replace the alter rails, put the tabernacle back in the center, get rid of the alter tables, stop priests from wandering around like a talk show host with a microphone when giving their homily, bring back reverent silence before and after Mass, sack all extra ordinary Eucharistic "ministers" distributing Holy Communion at Mass.
    Stop the pc piffle of alter girls, get the choir leader off the alter all together and go out of the view of the faithful who are there to adore Our Lord etc etc.
    God bless the Pope.

  13. In Scotland , in Dumfries and Gallaway diocese there is a very clear mess being promolgated by the bishop and his wee band of merry priests ( 6 left under 50yrs).
    Their publicised plan is to close churches and merge parishes and have more extra ordinary lay led liturgies and all the kind of piffle.
    They refuse to consider the idea of missionary priests from Poland and Africa.
    What's needed there is a BIG dose of humility. Can't they all just resign and the diocese be run directly by Rome, with Catholic priests from Poland and an African appointed as bishop. That would be wonderful, a real evangelisation of that very messy muddled diocese!

  14. GTaylor - thank and I agree with all but one thing; African and Polish priests have a mission to fulfil in their own countries. The orthodox Catholic orders such as the FSSP and Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest have plenty of young priests but our Bishops, most of them, will not allow them in. Things do appear black in D & G.