Tag Archives: Altar Rails

Flowers for the Immaculate Conception (Poison Eastern Lenten Roses, non-poisonous Ad orientem Altar-Rails, ed.)

Not sure, but this might be a buttercup. If it’s an Eastern Lenten Rose, all parts of this plant are poisonous. It’s to be found here in North America at an old friend’s house some hundreds of miles round trip on the “Day Off”. There’s no fear in that house of poisonous plants. They’re happy to have them there for their beauty. Our Lady is also fearless. All she ever saw outside of her Son was poison. She just prayed for us to be close to her Son. There’s no fear of the fear-demic at that house. We shouldn’t have any fear even to die and… and… go to heaven. Speaking of heaven…

While there, I had a long chat with another old friend, an extremely capable wood worker, who wants to get a move-on regarding the Altar Rails I mentioned to him months ago. I haven’t been there in a while. Lots of things happening. We chose the wood appropriate to the rails. We talked about the balustrade. We talked about installation, construction, and the next steps I need to do, as in taking pictures, getting exact measurements. That’s a non-poison flower for the Immaculate Conception.

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Installing Altar Rails for ease in the normal manner of receiving Holy Communion, Christ our God

I snapped this picture in the Upper Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, above the grotto in Lourdes, after assisting soon to be Cardinal Burke with logistics for Holy Mass. That’s when I was the first “Latin Mass” chaplain in Lourdes in time times of Summorum Pontificum.

For the installation of altar rails, step one is to get permission from the one-man liturgical committee of the Diocese. His office is closed today. Alas. Soon, though.

Step two is to get plans for the best way to go about the construction given that the revamped floor was not made for this after the high altar and such had been viciously ripped out in decades gone by.

A gentleman is volunteering to turn some pillars for us, you know, with swirls, not easy. A real craftsman.

Another gentleman is volunteering to make a base and a top for us. A retired cabinet maker.

I’m looking for measurements of the usual height of an altar rail, etc., whether that measurement includes adjustments for pads on which to kneel, etc.

Is there possible a reader who has plans stored away in an archive closet of a church or Cathedral, say, in Madison, say, in Birmingham, say, in Chattanooga, say, in one of our great parishes in Charlotte Diocese? I would appreciate this help very much, as would Jesus’ little flock, as would Jesus.

Right now we have a “kneeler” where most parishioners kneel, one after the other, but we gotta have something more solid for those who need to push off in order to get back up. No one has to kneel. We can all have knee problems any time in our lives. But in this parish, people love to kneel if they can. They are anxious to get this project underway and completed. I’m sick of reverence for Jesus being shunned like a mortal sin, so that people in mortal sin think nothing of receiving Jesus in Holy Communion. Get it? A vicious circle.

Sometimes people complain about the installation of altar rails. Over the decades, around the world, that amounts to just a few. So, my response is that, oh! altar rails are just a bit of mercy for the handicapped, right? That’s the excuse I give to people who are just so very afraid that this might be about kneeling before the Son of the Living God who will come to judge the living and the dead and the world by fire. But then they see that I am being sarcastic with them. It’s about mercy, sure. But it’s also about proper reverence before Divine Son of Immaculate Mary. The facial expressions are priceless. Lesson taken. :-) But, I ask, why is it that one mere inquiry sets ecclesiastics running in fear and cowardice, agreeing even out of character that it’s just so very true that we cannot at any cost be reverent before Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament.

I have much more to say about this, and a recent comment by a reader, which I didn’t let through, as I want to put it up in a post on it’s own. It’s about Covid and kneeling. Great! It might be another day or two. We’ll see. Right now, I gotta be out in the pasture with Jesus’ little flock.

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