" the official CBCEW "Pastoral Guide" Celebrating the Mass which spoke about the "Communion procession" and said (with a reference to GIRM n.160):
"In England and Wales it is through this action of walking solemnly in procession that the faithful make their sign of reverence in preparation for receiving Communion." (n.209)I hadn't seen this particular idiocy before! Who on earth are the liturgical experts who advise our bishops and foist this sort of thing on us?
Of course, queuing is widely recognised as a sign of reverence in England and Wales: we are renowned for it. We reverence the Bus Stop and the Ticket Office and the bakery and the supermarket checkout in this way. We reverence the chip shop and the cinema, the pop concert and the proms...
As Fr Finigan points out, the Vatican isn't fooled either and demands something more; and also confirms our right to receive Holy Communion kneeling.
Kneeling is of course a weak symbol compared with queuing, as we do it all the time. I regularly genuflect to the postman, the paper boy, the car park attendant, and so on.
I remember when we were being taught not to kneel by the Benedictines in the 70s, one of them explained to me that we no longer knelt to the monarch, so it was not a gesture appropriate for God either. I pointed out to him that we no longer knelt to the monarch as we no longer believe in the divine right of kings and no longer see the king or queen as God's vice-roy. (I was a horrible pupil).
But when I met the bishop of Chartres last week, I knelt and kissed his ring.
And I always kneel for communion - for somehow, despite the Benedictines' best efforts, I still believe in the Divine Right of Christ.
But, going back to the queuing business, the fact the bishops thought this even credible reinforces the point I made here a week or so back about their lack of Catholic Instincts...