You can't pray at Mass like this anymore either.
Ordinary form of things.
I sometimes save comments I leave in case they are not published. If the subject is important enough - or not - I'll use it for a post. Sometimes. In this case I didn't expect the comment to be accepted - I did a quick scan of comments and didn't see it. That's fine with me, I'm never offended. I do like to make my opinion known however, on 'ordinary' life, as a Catholic, as an ordinary Catholic.
Fr. Holguin's post is well written and well meaning, no doubt, as are many of the comments by those who like rubrics and follow rubrics, or search until they find a parish that does. When they decide to go to Mass that is. Sometimes people like this may skip Mass if they feel fat that day, or maybe had too much to drink the night before, or because the parish church in their neighborhood is too liberal and they just don't have the time to get to the 'perfect' parish - the 'observant' Mass where no one holds hands ever. But I digress.
Copts do it.
Having said that, the following is the comment I left on the post, a bit tongue in cheek, but it has been my experience over the decades...
I don't do it (hold hands or do the orans position at prayer or at Mass) but I see it in almost every Catholic church I have ever attended since the Charismatic Renewal spread across the country. It is now pretty much ingrained in Catholic's active participation at Mass... that old 'sensus fidelium' raises it's novus ordo head again! Darn!
Too late Fr. Holguin - it won't go away.I imagine that comment came off a bit snarky - it wasn't meant as an attack or to be snide, but to just remind everyone that this practice has been ingrained in worshipers all around the country. The sensus fidelium term was misused deliberately just to make my point it has become a common practice - especially among families. If you say it comes from Protestants and I say it comes from the Charismatics, fine. Most churches I have been to over the years include Protestant hymns in the liturgy - at Mass. Many trads insist the Mass is Protestant. Catholic devotions - especially in the Americas has been influenced by Protestantism, no doubt about it. Yet it doesn't change the truth, it doesn't affect the dogma of faith - the centrality of the Eucharist, the belief in the true presence of Christ , the holy sacrifice of the Mass remains intact.
Asians do it.
Take the Latino parishes for instance. Often their liturgies incorporate a great deal of emotion as well as hand raising and hand holding - it's not so much Protestant as it is cultural. As a cultural thing, many priests are open to it, respect it and permit it in order to help others feel welcome and comfortable by permitting such gestures; call it 'cultural active participation'. To embrace and accept such practices is a far better pastoral practice than losing the faithful to an Evangelical community without sacraments.
Kids are taught to do it.
The hand holding and orans position is not how I pray at mass, but like I said, just about every parish I've ever attended has that going on. Our young, newly ordained priests follow the GIRM in everything, and yet they allow the congregation to continue the practice, as well as Communion in the hand, and altar girls and boys. These newly ordained priests emphasize the sacraments, go out of their way to encourage vocations, their homilies frequently urge a return to the sacrament of penance, Eucharistic adoration, and devotion to Our Lady. These are the essentials. Let the priests follow the rubrics, and the parishioners will follow.
Here's a thought: Perhaps if the priest celebrated Mass ad orientem, he himself would be less distracted by what the congregation does? In the days before the Council active participation meant following along in the missal, the rosary, or some other Mass prayers - but then active participation changed.
Old people - for whom the very devout
are waiting to die off - do it.
Once in a while I used to murmur to myself about that stuff; the hand holding, sign of peace, and so on. Nevertheless, it became so widespread, I just accepted it. Otherwise it became a distraction for me at Mass. So many people watch others at Mass, no wonder they do not even know how to recollect themselves. People look around at how others are dressed, how they pray before Mass - if at all, others whisper, some talk. Single moms feel conspicuous and left out. Fat ugly people are embarrassed the way they look. Pious Mary's evil eye the women with bare shoulders or no chapel veil. This is vanity. This is not devotion. Very seriously, if you pray before Mass in preparation, you'll be able to focus and pray during Mass - without distracting yourself by what others are doing.
So - my post here is a waste of time and consideration - but I think the comments to Fr. Holguin's post are a waste as well. More stuff for people to gripe about and guilt other people for.
I guess they do it in Europe too.
This is what is more important:
Go to Mass every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation,
even if you are living in sin.Pray at Mass and pray privately,
even if you aren't in the state of grace.Assist at Mass attentively and devoutly,
in accord with the rubrics as you know them or have been instructed.Don't worry about what others do at Mass.
Go to confession and reform your own life.
Even Cat-licks do it.