A GROUP of Nova Scotia parishioners who won a victory in the Canadian Supreme Court Over their right to kneel at communion, were refused the Eucharist the following Sunday as they knelt at the altar rails of their local church.
On March 14, the Supreme Court quashed an earlier ruling that Roseanne Skoke-Graham and several of her fellow parishioners were causing a disturbance by insisting on kneeling at the altar rails.
The court also said that it could not rule on whether Catholics have the right to kneel for Communion under Catholic regulations because that was strictly a church affair. The decision as to whether the congregation should kneel or stand, or have a choice between the two, when they receive communion is in the hands of the local bishop. Ms Skoke-Graham, following the refusal of the Eucharist at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Stallarton, has announced her intention of seeking damages in the civil court for "spiritual deprivation".
Bishop William Power of Antigonish, Nova Scotia, said after the court ruling that the problem was not kneeling, but the gropp's ties with controversial claims of Marian apparitions in New York.
Ms Skoke-Graham and her supporters have admitted that they are influenced by "apparitions" of Our Lady at Bayside, Long Island, where Our Lady has instructed that receiving Communion while standing is Unacceptable. Officials in Brooklyn Diocese have dismissed the apparitions as having "no credibility", and the Vatican has echoed this view.