We would also do well to teach, as the Fathers do, that reverence is not only about proper reception of the Eucharist, but also about living the kind of life to which the Eucharist commits us. In 1980 St. John Paul II wrote in the apostolic letterDominicae Cenae: In some countries, the practice of receiving Communion in the hand has been introduced. June 29, 2021 | The Pope grants that throughout the territory of your conference, each bishop may, according to his prudent judgment and conscience, authorize in his diocese the introduction of the new rite for giving communion. The causes are myriad and often interconnected. It is not solely the result of some weird medieval form of reverence. Catholics use birth control, get divorced and fornicate at the same rate as society in general, with the sin of using birth control rarely confessed. 5. I would like to remind people to indicate clearly how they wish to receive. In such cases, episcopal conferences should examine matters carefully and should make whatever decisions, by a secret vote and with a two-thirds majority, are needed to regulate matters. When the communion is distributed under both kinds, it is never permitted to place in the hands of the communicants hosts which have first been placed in the Blood of the Lord. Because, he says, one should choose the days on which one lives with more purity and self-control in order to approach so great a sacrament worthily. All our lives we who believe in Christ are moving in time toward that moment when we will be taken by death from this world and enter into the joy of the Lord in the eternal Kingdom he has prepared for us. If one is receiving in the hand the following is normative: upon approaching the minister of the Host extend the hands in the middle of the chest. So they reintroduced the practice of Communion in the hand (it had been originally introduced as a widespread practice by the Arian heretics of the Fourth Century to deny that Jesus is God). So when received unworthily, it is not only useless, but it is harmful to oneself (a lifestyle of sin continues), our neighbors (increase of violence, arson, looting, murders), and society in general (take a look at the condition of our country), and is extremely offensive to God (hence the wide-spread suffering). Paul VI had a measure of it in 1974, and we hav emostly missed the wisdom of Evangelii Nuntiandi. Their decisions should be sent to Rome to receive the necessary confirmation, []. The document does not have numbered paragraphs to cite, but youll find it a few paragraphs after the tabulation of votes collected from bishops. As seen above, the U.S. bishops were not among the first to permit Communion in the hand. The history of the liturgy, however, makes clear that rather early on a . Receiving Communion The Sacrament of Holy Communion (also known as The Lord's Supper or Eucharist) has been precious and life-giving to Christians for 2,000 years. The faithful should consume the host before returning to their place; the ministers part will be brought out by use of the usual formulary, The body of Christ, to which the communicant replies: Amen. In this ordinance Christ ratifies his promises to his people, and they on their part solemnly consecrate themselves to him and to his entire service. 1996, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Hard to believe that Catechesis has never been better if that fundamental is misunderstood. You should thus draw near with great awe and love, according to the greatness of that which is given: with awe, because of the greatness of (its) honour; and with love, because of (its) grace. [5] John Climacus, Ladder of Divine Ascent 28. Your email address will not be published. Zambia, 11 March 1974 Instead of receiving in my hand, thinking "the other way is better," and quickly gobbling up the Eucharist, I took the "popular way," as a gift: I put my left hand on top of my right . Look how military inspectors demand very high standards of care when inspecting barracks for cleanliness. Therefore, it is not licit to deny Holy Communion to any of Christ's faithful solely on the grounds, for example, that the person wishes to receive the Eucharist kneeling or standing" (Redemptionis Sacramentum, no. With your hand hollowed, receive the Body of Christ and answer 'Amen'. Leo P. McCauley FotC 64 (Catholic University of America Press: Washington, DC, 2000 [1970]). In the context of the reception of Communion, this means a cognizance of both Church history and contemporary cultural nuances. While we have the option of receiving holy Communion either on the tongue or on the hand, we must always be mindful of receiving our Lord respectfully. Cyril of Jerusalem [c. 313-386], Catechetical Lectures, 23:21-22) Several more but no room here. Sure, Ill go along with that. When the priest gives it he says: The body of Christ. He teaches you by this word not to look at that which is visible, but to picture in your mind the nature of this oblation, which, by the coming of the Holy Spirit, is the body of Christ. I am from India. Since the question involves human attitudes, this mode of communion is bound up with the perceptiveness and preparation of the one receiving. South Africa, 1971 A. Christ instituted the Holy Eucharist: The bread which we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? The condition is the complete avoidance of any cause for the faithful to be shocked and any danger of irreverence toward the Eucharist. The author seems to think that liturgical reforms should consist of only what an ecumenical council prescribed. Receiving the host in one's hand has been an option in the United States since the bishops authorized this in May 1977 and the Holy See confirmed it. II], For you hear the words, the Body of Christ and respond Amen. Be then a member of the Body of Christ that your Amen may be true (St. Augustine, Sermon 272: PL 38, 1247). New Zealand, 24 April 1974 October 13, 2022. [27] John Chrysostom, Baptismal Instruction, 12.15-16, trans. Archbishop Anthony Fisher, OP, of Sydney published an excellent paper on the topic of conscience and authority which can be found at:https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=7833or, in a slightly briefer form athttps://zenit.org/articles/bishop-fisher-on-conscience-and-authority/. A situation that, in the US certainly, was not necessarily governed by external uniformity (given the varieties of ethnic piety and cultural practices). 91). When the bishops reassembled, Cardinal John Carberry of St. Louis, a determined opponent of Communion in the hand, was quick to get up to set things straight. We welcome our fellow Christians to this celebration of the Eucharist as our brothers and sisters. ), Pray Tell: An open forum on faith in South Texas. Our souls ought to be purer than they, more holy, more brilliant. But "the sign of communion is more complete when given under both kinds, since in that form the sign of the Eucharistic meal appears more clearly." This is the usual form of receiving communion in the Eastern rites. vehementer hortatur retention of current practice while invoking the common good of the Church. [6] Cyril of Jerusalem, Mystagogical Catecheses 5.13. awr. These practices have wide evidence of use and in some ways never died out completely. The divine coal is a common image of the Eucharist in Syrian theology. What if our reception made us all more loving of one another, whatever our views on how to receive? Care must also be taken that the communicants have clean hands and that their comportment is becoming and in keeping with the practices of the different peoples. We should rejoice in that. With regard to the first precept, Origen of Alexandria cautions, You who are accustomed to take part in divine mysteries know, when you receive the body of the Lord, how you protect it with all caution and veneration lest any small part fall from it, lest anything of the consecrated gift be lost. The debate was interrupted by lunch. For this is what it is to receive unworthily: if one receives at that time when he ought to be doing penance. Our bishops have argued that Communion in the hand is the proper way for the faithful to respond to our Lord's invitation: "All of you, take and eat this." What the bishops overlook is the fact . Communion received on the tongue and while kneeling. At the same time, it is not justified to claim that Communion in the hand is necessarily less reverent or inevitably leads to abuses. For the first few centuries of the Church, receiving Communion in the hand was a common practice. Q: When the bishop in a diocese allows the faithful to receive Communion in the hand or on the tongue, can a priest, who objects on the grounds of conscience, refuse to give the faithful holy Communion in the hand? This catechesis must succeed in excluding any suggestion that in the mind of the Church there is a lessening of faith in the Eucharistic presence and in excluding as well as any danger or hint of danger of profaning the Eucharist. Eccl., VII, ix). Yugoslavia, 1971 The person distributing Communion says audibly to each person approaching, "The Body of Christ." [18] See Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 6.43.18. Christ himself at the Last Supper pleaded with his Father: "Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us" (John 17:11, 21).Baptism has joined us to Christ and to one another as the vine and its branches. Our procession should move with dignity; our bearing should be that of those who know they have been redeemed by Christ and are coming to receive their God! 51 (Feb), pg 62). The [Seraph] did not hold it, and [Isaiah] did not eat it Have reverence for the honor which God has bestowed upon it, and do not lead it down to the vileness of sin.[27]. And of course Pope Paul VI was adamant that all the reforms carried out under him were faithful to the Second Vatican Council. 5.21, trans. [12] Ephrem the Syrian, Hymns on Faith 10 and Hymns on Virginity 33.7. The missal of 1570 eliminated almost all sequences and moved the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar to the beginning of the Order of Mass though the Council of Trent never said a word about either. If you are the body and members of Christ, then it is your sacrament that is placed on the table of the Lord; it is your sacrament that you receive. Biting, tearing, casting aspersions on the faith of other Catholics: this is a damnable situation in the Church. These views are sometimes strongly held. Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS) TOP Among Catholics, there is a sincere difference of opinion with respect to the opportunity of this practice, as to its possible spiritual benefits or detriments. This practice has been requested by individual episcopal conferences and has received approval from the Apostolic See. Pakistan, 29 October 1976 Of note for the modern debate, both John Chrysostom and the Council of Constantinople in Trullo argue that human beings, made in the image of God and capable of communing with him, are more worthy to touch the Eucharist than vessels of gold and silver. Elizabeth Klein is an Assistant Professor of Theology at the, The Abandoned: Toward a Christocentric Phenomenology of Prayer, The Conclusion of Karl Rahner's Dissertation on the Origin of the Church from the Side Wound of the Crucified Christ. A frequent reception of the Sacrament of Penance is encouraged for all. To be a pledge of everlasting life. It is not clear as to how widespread it was or if it was a regular practice. Thanks for this, Dennis. Scandinavia,October 15 1969 awr. And to demonstrate reverence and. What if our way of calling our fellow Christians to a higher way were based on loving example and not polemics? A: The answer to this question is somewhat complex. Dear Patrick, cites vote tallies to defend a claim that a large majority (longe plurimos) of bishops not only oppose introducing Communion in the hand but consider it tum sensui tum spirituali cultui [] offensioni Some scholars claim that this part of the Mystical Catechesis is not originally from St. Cyril but a later interpolation into the text. Communion on the tongue remains the usual and common form of administering Holy Communion.