Support Your Cathedral

Kiss, Don’t Shake the Priest’s or Bishop’s Hand

priests_hand2Did you know that the proper way to greet a priest or bishop is to ask his blessing and kiss his right hand? How do you do this? Approach the priest or bishop with your right hand over your left hand and say “Father” or “Master” in the case of the bishop, bless.” He will make the sign of the cross, and place his right hand over yours. This is much more appropriate and traditional than shaking their hands. After all, the priest and bishop are not just “one of the boys.” When you kiss their hands, you show respect for their office — they are the ones who “bless and sanctify” you and who offer the holy gifts on your behalf. So next time you greet your priest or bishop, don’t shake his hand, ask for his blessing.