May 28, 2006

LA Times: Kneeling as mortal sin

Today's (May 28) L.A. Times has a front-page (!) story, "A Ban on Kneeling? Some Catholics Won't Stand for It" (click on this post's title).

The article covers the continuing standoff (pun intended) at St. Mary's by the Sea Parish in Huntington Beach, in Bishop Tod Brown's Diocese of Orange.

At issue, as you probably know, is pastor Father Martin Tran's insistence that the congregation stand after the Agnus Dei. Father calls it "clearly rebellion, grave disobedience and mortal sin" for his parishioners to refuse to go along with his standing order (pun intended again).

Father Tran also calls the refusal to kneel "despising the authority of the local bishop."

The news story says a third of the congregation is continuing to kneel after the Agnus Dei.

The story also says Father Tran wrote 55 pro-kneeling parishioners to tell them to quit the parish and the diocese (!) "for, among other things, 'creating misleading confusion, division and chaos in the parish by intentional disobedience and opposition to the current liturgical norms.'"

The article notes, "Father Joe Fenton, spokesman for the Diocese of Orange, said the diocese supports Tran's view that disobeying the anti-kneeling edict is a mortal sin. 'That's Father Tran's interpretation, and he's the pastor,' he said. 'We stand behind Father Tran.'"

This does not exactly sound open, welcoming, inclusive and tolerant toward the members of the kneeling community. In fact, it sounds judgmental, non-pastoral and rigid.

Could the pro-kneeling parishioners get themselves invited back by the Diocese of Orange if they declared themselves to belong to the homosexual Catholic pressure group Rainbow Sash, and to be Catholic pro-abortion politicians, for good measure? Just wondering.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bishop Brown seems to have a very strong dislike for reverence and adoration to God! What does that say about such a person? Well, it tells me especially if they are Catholic even if they are a Bishop that they don't Love and Adore God! in fact it says they don't believe in the Catholic Faith. This Bishop Brown is forceing his non -catholic beliefs on the lay faithful in his diocese. He is saying you are in mortal sin if you show reverence and adoration to God( by kneeling). I am sick of this ! When are the lay faith ful going to speak out about this spiritual abuse! God is speaking to us through the LA Times. Something so insignificant to the secular world makes Front Page of the LATimes! WOW! People Wake up! LET's Roll!

11:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Theology of Kneeling

From Cardinal Ratzinger's The Spirit of the Liturgy

7:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In this day, even those entrusted to preach the Truths of the faith are calling good (reverence and adoration due to God alone) an evil and call evil (abortion, contraception, homosexuality,etc) a 'good' or a 'gift'.

We are in a depraved generation and look at our teens!

We are in an age of apostasy which continues to grow.

7:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is from an excellent article by Bishop Thomas Olmstead of Phoenix.

According to Abba Apollo, a desert father who lived about 1,700 years ago, the devil has no knees; he cannot kneel; he cannot adore; he cannot pray; he can only look down his nose in contempt. Being unwilling to bend the knee at the name of Jesus is the essence of evil (Cf. Is 45:23, Rom 14:11). But when we kneel at Jesus’ name, when we bow down in service of others, and when we bend the knee in adoration, we are following in the footsteps of the Magi, we are imitating Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, St. Maximillian Kolbe, and all the saints and angels in heaven. “Come, let us bow down and worship. Let us kneel before the Lord who made us.”

9:24 AM  
Blogger Andrew said...

I thought there was no such thing as a mortal sin anymore????? :)

11:15 AM  
Blogger Quo Vadis said...

They ought to start wearing white sashes and make accusations of orthophobia and uninclusiveness. Oh wait, that only works on the Bishop if your gay. The rainbow sashes must strike a soft spot in the Bishop and bring up fond memories of his Seminary days.

11:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think I have ever heard Bishop Brown or Father Tran say that contraception is a mortal sin.

11:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Could somebody use a course in Leadership 101 here, or what?????

WHY would a pastor want to be so antagonistic toward faithful members of his parish over such a matter?

Why can't Fr. Tran, if he needs to comment on it at all, just say that
he prefers the standing posture and explain why, but then also say that he understands that many people prefer the long-time tradition of the kneeling posture, and for heaven's sale, truly, let it go at that????? Can't he just try to get along with these good folk? Can he honor their traditional expressions of their faith (yes, for the sake of multi-cultural inclusivity..or something...)

Why try instead to force them to comply by using such drastic measures?

So is this really what Fr. Tran thinks Jesus would do??? Is this really what Bishop Brown thinks Jesus would do????

Oh, come on people, puleeeeez! You must be kidding!

Rather, Fr. Tran would seem to be waging some kind of very strange power struggle here, for personal reasons.

It's a power struggle that would be quite unbecoming to anyone, but is most especially unbecoming to one who is called to be a priest, a pastor, a shepherd.

Yes, we might well ask whether there are any other matters of belief and/or practice on which Fr. Tran is quite so adamant as he is on this.'s all about leadership..What DO they teach them in those seminaries? Sometimes we lay peeople can only shake our heads and wonder....

1:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Kate about lack of diplomacy and leadership. Bishops and priests like Father Tran are caught off guard when they actually meet some committed practicing Catholics - it's a new experience for them.....and think how sad it is that it is so uncommon! 40 years of no catechesis has left its mark on the laity too!

2:07 PM  
Blogger Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...

Fr. Tran spent many years as an Assistant to Fr. Gerald Coleman at the notorious seminary, St. Patrick's in Menlo Park!

Bishop Brown approves of an ex-priest teaching his Deacon candidates such theological gems as "to believe in the true presence borders on canibalism!

CRCOA will be demonstrating at the upcoming Bishops' Conference in Los Angeles, June 15-17. Will you join us?

We will meet again this Sunday Inka Anaheim Rest. to further plan that activity. The meeting will start at 5:00 PM.

Come early or stay late and hungry, the food is great.

Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman, Concerned Roman Catholics of American, Inc.

5:42 PM  
Blogger Simon-Peter Vickers-Buckley said...

Kneeling convicts them. Convicts them of what I wonder?

12:01 PM  
Blogger bobnd said...

I know the Rector in my home diocese's Cathedral does not like kneeling, but I still kneel from consecration up to communion and stand for the appropriate parts of mass. Yet Fr. Steve Binsfield thinks its wonderful following some liberal liturgical idea, but his contempory mass is full of silver.

10:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


If Tran is serious about equating the choice to kneel in front of the Eucharist with "mortal sin," then his moral compass not only is broken; it doesn't exist!

This is nothing but the Catholic Establishment's desire to keep people in line. The Catholic Establishment isn't interested in faith, the Gospel or God. It's interested in power, prestige, material benefit and refusing to be held accountable, especially by the unwashed, unsophisticated faithful. Always has been (just ask Francis of Assis). Always will be.

There's only one way to respond. Every Catholic who receives the Eucharist at St. Mary's By The Sea should kneel before before the eucharistic minister or priest, especially if it's Tran. What's he going to do, throw everybody out of church?

4:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...



12:42 AM  
Blogger Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...

CROCA Activity Schedule for June 14-17 Bishops’ Meeting
Milenium Biltmore Hotel, Los Angeles, CA

Wednesday June 14, 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM, Demonstration outside Hotel

Thursday, June 15, Volunteer day for those who can, we will supply

Friday at Cathedral, Demonstration 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM

Saturday, June 17, Volunteer day for those who can, help us give
the Bishops a send off at the Hotel 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM. We will
supply materials.

All day Thursday and the first 30 minutes Friday will be public
sessions and we encourage true Catholics to be present and
vociferous during this time. We are certain that SNAP and VOTF
will try to dominate this time, and we must be prepared to counter


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12:24 AM  

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