(CNS) -- Receiving the Eucharist on the tongue while kneeling before the pope will become the norm at papal liturgies, said the Vatican's liturgist.
While current norms allow the faithful to receive the Eucharist in the hand while standing, Pope Benedict XVI has indicated a preference for the more traditional practice, said Msgr. Guido Marini, master of papal liturgical ceremonies.
Kneeling and receiving Communion on the tongue highlights "the truth of the real presence (of Christ) in the Eucharist, helps the devotion of the faithful and introduces the sense of mystery more easily," he said in a June 26 interview with the Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano.
Pastorally speaking, he said "it is urgent to highlight and recover" these aspects of the sacredness and mystery of the Eucharist in modern times.
Generally at papal Masses, those receiving Communion from the pope stand and the majority choose to receive on the tongue.
But starting with a May 22 Mass outside the Basilica of St. John Lateran, two ushers placed a kneeler in front of the altar and the chosen communicants all knelt and received on the tongue...
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