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Devin Smith wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • I am a convert to the Catholic Church from a Baptist background and I was wondering, what is the Catholic Church's views on shouting in church?
  • Like when someone is praising the Lord by stomping their feet, clapping, jumping and blessing God through it all?
  • Is this good?

When I was happy about what God did for me, I often would shout in praise. Even as a Catholic,
I still feel happy and feel like blessing the Lord this way. A priest at one church told me it was OK.

He said sometimes the Spirit will bring people to do this but I want to hear from others as well.

Thank You.


  { What is the Catholic Church's views on shouting in church? }

Eric replied:

Devin —

While there is nothing intrinsically wrong with this mode of expression, culturally speaking, this is not really accepted in the liturgy. I'm not sure there are any specific rules against it, but then again, the rules don't always envision everything people might do. In general, there is not really an accommodation for this kind of praise and worship in the liturgy, because the praise and worship is ordered toward the Holy Sacrifice and praying together in unison in a structured fashion.

A Catholic liturgy is fundamentally different from a Baptist service. It's a participation in The Sacrifice of Calvary, and in the Heavenly Liturgy. In a sense, we are standing mystically at the foot of the Cross and entering into the mystery of Calvary.

In addition, sacred silence is treasured as the mode of worship, as it is written,

Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10

It might work better in a Charismatic Mass, although even then, in my experience, people don't shout, they praise the Lord in an orderly, respectful fashion at specific points in the liturgy.

It's best place is in a charismatic prayer meeting or in private prayer.


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