No Contact: Palms or Fingertips?

Self-signation is a really good thing, a form of blessing for which lay people need no prompting, no clergy, and no permission. It is one of the most automatic gestures of public faith. It is also part of public culture in many places in the world. It has even invaded the civic religion of sport.

I notice religious goods companies are on the pandemic bandwagon to offer contact-less ways of providing holy water at church entrances. Like this one. Good idea or not?

Where I’ve served as a liturgist, my sacristans and I usually made sure to refresh stoop water frequently. Saturday afternoons before confessions and after the last Sunday Mass are minimal, as is daily checks for films and little bits of stuff. Don’t get me started on sponges.

Let’s get back to the hand under the sensor. Maybe a new practice will emerge: left hand to trigger what? A drop? A little splash? Then right hand to wet the fingers and make the sign.

Maybe this needs to be thought through a bit. Do you suppose these will be signs of the future for the sign of the cross? Or will Catholics start a handiwork to forehead, torso, and shoulders? What might that signify, to start a blessing with a face palm?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Church News, spirituality. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to No Contact: Palms or Fingertips?

  1. Tom McClusky says:

    We started using similar ones shortly after we opened. I will say, I loved the idea. Not having Holy Water left a noticeable gap in going to Mass. I notice many people won’t wait in line for it (we have 6) and just skip it, but there is that automatic reflex of blessing ourselves when we come in and go out, which is why I like the idea.

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