Thursday, September 1, 2011

If a soul kneels to receive and there is no archbishop to see does it matter to God?

**Warning--rant ahead**

So an Archbishop in Scotland has told his 'flock' to stop kneeling for the reception of Holy Communion.

Give me a break.  Really?
If someone kneels--they are what?--drawing attention to themselves?  Maybe.  Or maybe they have an agenda?  Or maybe they just want to have a moment with Christ?
Does it really matter?

Haven't you ever been brought to your knees?
Hasn't it ever hit you what miracle you just received?
Not that it's every time--but occasionally doesn't it just knock you down?
----off your high horse?

What's the big deal if a person approaches God that way?

We've focused so much on the 'gathering of the assembly as the Body of Christ'--that we've lost the reason why we are gathering.
Maybe a little kneeling would help slow us down and not be concerned about the constraints.

Maybe more people who are confecting and distributing Eucharist ought to kneel.

I have heard the argument that standing in western culture is a sign of respect.  I've heard the argument that we are an "Easter" people standing in the midst of the Resurrected Christ present before us.  Yep, I've heard them--and I've stood.  I'm just saying a little kneeling when the Spirit so moves is not a bad thing.

What is the greater issue is that an Archbishop has decided that people must conform to his liturgical mandate.  Really?  Everything else must be going pretty well in his diocese for this to become the focus of the latest liturgical energy.

Now, this blog entry is on the heels of a rather disheartening experience of Eucharist an Episcopal church (remember Jesus in the plastic baggie) -but in all fairness I want to share the following.
One of my holdovers from my Episcopal priest days was the altar rail--There was something humbling about the whole action.
The priest and chalice bearer would distribute Holy Communion from behind the altar rail.  Contrary to popular belief it was still very efficient and you didn't feel like cattle being lead to milking.  And, if you don't want to kneel, then don't--it was never and issue.
One day I stood waiting for an elderly gentleman who was having difficulty kneeling down.  At first I grew impatient and thought "Why doesn't he just stand?"

My heart was opened as I watched him humbly kneel and hold out his worn arthritic hands to receive his savior.  He looked at the Host as I held it, "The Body of Christ."
"Amen" --his eyes welling with tears.