Monday, June 25, 2012

Good Question at WDTPRS

Put up or shut up.


I never applied for a permit to make comments at WDTPRS, which is why I turn what could have been a comment there, into a post here.  Without further ado. 
From a reader:
A group of us wanted to recite the Rosary after Mass in church and our pastor said ‘No the Rosary is a ‘private prayer’ and cannot be said as a group in church…..your thoughts ???
Fr. Z responds:
Are you sure that is what he said?

If he really said that – and it is a little hard to believe – think that to be one of the dumbest things I have heard in a long time.

Of course the Rosary can be prayed by groups and in a church! - WDTPRS 
Truth be told, the pastor of the church calls the shots.  There is a famous little Catholic church in a small town which has a big Cathedral, wherein the pastor of the one, and the rector of the other, told people they were not to publicly recite the rosary as a group out loud.  Each circumstance was different however.

  • At the famous little Catholic church, the pastor told the lady who wanted to pray the rosary out loud, after Mass, with her little group, that he would not permit it because it disturbed other people who wished to pray silently after Mass.  In addition, he instructed her, that in the future if she wanted to initiate a prayer group or time of public prayer, she must first ask the permission of the pastor.

  • At the Cathedral a group of 'gay' Catholics attempted to pray the rosary out loud, in the Church, for a particular intention, and the rector of the place instructed them to pray quietly and privately.  The rector stated that “public prayer” had to be approved in advance by his office.   In this case, the rector was aware that the intentions of the group were in opposition to Catholic teaching.  He thereby instructed them and limited them, while permitting them to remain and pray privately and silently, without demonstration. 

In both cases, each group was permitted to stay and pray silently.  Nothing wrong with that.

It is the pastor of the place who calls the shots - and he answers to his bishop - not to Catholics online.

NB: When in church, I keep my head down and my mouth shut - no really I do.  I still get tripped up on 'consubstantial'.  Never see it coming.  I know!


  1. The "knights" in my parish recite the rosary aloud before Mass once a month on every first Sunday (all of the Masses). It drives me absolutely bonkers. I need my quiet time.

    1. I knew the woman at the little famous church - she was convinced the pastor was evil because of that incident saying, "What kind of priest would object to the rosary being said?"

      He happens to be an excellent priest.

  2. Good job trying to spike Z stats!

    1. I just found it ironic that it was his BFF who asked the group not to pray the rosary out loud in church. And the rector's friend is the one who told the woman she couldn't do it after Mass in the little famous church.

      It really is the call of the pastor of the place - and I'd be concerned some of Z's more zealous readers might take his post as a call to action against pastors who establish rules within their parishes. The pastor is the one who calls the shots. This isn't a rosary issue as it is a pastoral consideration for the entire flock the pastor has charge over.

  3. +JMJ+

    The Apostleship of Prayer in my parish has been praying the Angelsu, the Rosary and the Litany of the Blessed Virgin before every evening Mass since before I moved here. (That is, before every evening Mass except the one on Wednesday, because that is when the Men of St. Joseph pray the Rosary of St. Joseph and the Litany to St. Joseph.) There is another group that does this for the noon Mass in one of our "satellite" chapels. And they all get microphones so that everyone can hear! LOL!!!

    You spoiled Americans with your #firstworldproblems . . .

    Having said that, I myself can never seem to tune out the guitarist at the noon Mass who plays the last few bars of Happy Birthday after the final hymn and then cheerfully greets any celebrants who happen to be there. LOL!

    1. "You spoiled Americans with your #firstworldproblems . . . "

      You got that right. Amazing, isn't it.

  4. I wouldn't say it's "spoiled Americans" as much as the liturgy calls for silence before Mass. I'm sure that other times can be arranged to pray non-liturgical devotions in church.


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