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Dear catholic.com visitors: This website from Catholic Answers, with all its many resources, is the world's largest source of explanations for Catholic beliefs and practices. A fully independent, lay-run, 501(c)(3) ministry that receives no funding from the institutional Church, we rely entirely on the generosity of everyday people like you to keep this website going with trustworthy , fresh, and relevant content. If everyone visiting this month gave just $1, catholic.com would be fully funded for an entire year. Do you find catholic.com helpful? Please make a gift today. Thank you. Wishing you a blessed Lenten season.

Why do some Catholics kiss their thumb after making the sign of the cross?

Question:

I notice that Latinos in my parish kiss their thumb after making the sign of the cross. Why?

Answer:

They actually are kissing a cross formed by placing the thumb and forefinger at right angles. Kissing the cross (as we do on Good Friday) is an ancient gesture of devotion. It implies a humble acceptance of one’s own cross in imitation of Jesus.

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