Priests should not wish their parishioners “Good morning” at the beginning of Mass, according to Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle of Manila.
The words “The Lord be with you” are sufficient, he said.
“With all due respect, my brother-priests, I do not see the need for saying ‘Good morning’ and similar greetings when God’s Real Presence in the Holy Eucharist alone suffices,” he said.
“Is not the expression ‘The Lord be with you’ more than enough?” he asked.
Archbishop Tagle, who was speaking during his Corpus Christi Mass at the Santa Cruz Church in Manila, said that priests seem to give more emphasis on “Good morning” than on the all-important “The Lord be with you”.
Anyone can wish someone good morning, but the words “The Lord be with you” are only heard during Mass, which is why they must be emphasised, he said.
Some priests will repeat “Good morning” if they don’t hear the reply “Good morning, Father,” he said, but don’t seem at all concerned if no one responds to “The Lord be with you”.
Archbishop Tagle’s comments were posted in an article on the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines website.
The archbishop, who is often considered to be progressive rather than conservative, was appointed in 2011, and was made a cardinal in November 2012.