Friday, May 03, 2002

And now for a peeve

Why do we feel a need to enhance the Our Father? Christ himself taught us the words; it seems to me, therefore, that no action on our part can improve it. And yet, two affectations have lately crept into services I have attended. Suddenly, in a way I haven't seen since my childhood in the 70s, we are all holding hands during it. I guess that's harmless enough, but I'm not a hugger nor a handholder, and I don't think that makes me less of a Christian. But, why, oh why? must we then raise our clasped hands high during the Glory Be? The other affectation, equally annoying, is the tendency of non-handholders in the congregation to spread their open hands in imitation of the priest's position at the altar. Please: don't do this.

The prayer is sufficient reverence. In fact, it's more than sufficient: it's remarkable. Everything you need to know about life is right there in that short prayer. 55 words to a better life. The handholding stuff and the priestly-posing is a distraction, that puts the emphasis back on us, and away from Him.


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