Monday, January 7, 2013


From our choir director/organist, Nelda Chapman's iPhone at Pope Benedict's Epiphany Mass. AH, AWE ORIENTEM!

This is the Rite of Holy Communion. Please note that our Holy Father distributes Holy Communion to the deacons kneeling and by way of intinction so dreaded by some Catholic elitists. Please note also that most of the congregation are receiving Holy Communion on the tongue even when they present their hands and one priest is making the sign of the cross with the Host before he gives it to the communicant.

In fact at all papal Masses at St. Peter's the common sense approach to receiving both the Sacred Host and Precious Blood is for the deacons to receive by intinction and the concelebrating bishops to approach the papal altar and self-intinct. They don't drink after one another, a very safe and healthy practice!

Please note one other thing the Holy Father has in common with me, a cow lick. My hair in the same place does the same thing when cut too short! :) A good MC should have a clean comb and should have patted that down discreetly of course.

Please note that the Holy Father drops a Host as he distributes to the congregation and the one with the paten does not notice it or attempt to catch it. Tisk, tisk, but the good MC Msgr. Marino see it laying on the kneeler and places it in the ciborium the Holy Father is holding. The choir is singing the official Communion Antiphon.

And someone forgot to tell the men who place the Holy Father's chair in front of the altar after he incenses it, that the Holy Father would not go around the altar to incense it as he has in the past, thus discombobulating these men and delaying the seating of the Holy Father. MC's fault I'd say!


Unknown said...

As a trained MC, I will say the following...ahem....

I ALWAYS make sure that Fr. Pastor looks presentable prior to his leaving the sacristy. His vestments are always crisp, including his alb and amice. His cincture is always set so as to appropriate the folds properly and two other things, 1. His hair is always combed (by my instruction, by his own hand) 2. He has no jewelry on his hands or wrist.

There is no place for individualism in the Mass. The priest should care not if I ask him to remove his wristwatch, because he should not be concerned with the time, I should be, I don't wear one either, btw. Rings are traps for particles of the Sacred Species and also convey a sense of audacity which is wholly uncalled for. Father Celebrant knows this of me, prior during our debriefing (and if I am his MC for any length of time, by my practice).

I take impeccable care of my Celebrants and ministers, but there are three rules I live by with regard to appearance:

1. use a comb or brush with gel or hairspray (if necessary)
2. albs/amices and surplices will be maintained with proper pleating, cassocks will be properly maintained, including those clerics who have received ministries wearing collars and those ministers who have not wearing white oxfords with top collars buttoned AND BLACK slacks/shoes in winter and BLACK socks/shoes in summer.

Uniformity is the key.

With regard to the papal Mass, something I don't understand (I've been to more than few, btw), why must communion be given to the faithful? I think that there is no way to properly protect the integrity of the Blessed Sacrament. I also know that it is not necessary for the faithful to receive Holy Communion, but rather to assist at Mass. It would seem that distribution of the Blessed Sacrament is incumbent upon the ministers and at a Mass of that magnitude, it should be limited as such.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Yes, but, yes but...
I would say that the laity's communion in the Ordinary Form of the Mass is integral for those who are in a state of grace. Certainly at an indoor Mass the integrity of the Sacrament can be maintained. I've been to a packed outdoor Mass in the Square and that is another question altogether.
I would also say that the gravitational pull of the OF on the EF is that Communion of the Faithful who are of course in a state of grace should be the norm at all Masses. Father celebrant would trump MC in this regard.
I would also note that His Holiness wears a watch during Mass as did his predecessor.
I wear a watch and cuff links with I wear french cuffs, but no ring, although my conservative Polish PV wears a religious ring on his middle finger. Haven't figured that one out yet.

Unknown said...

Fr. McD;

I don't know if integral is the right word. Desirable is a better choice, I think. But, if reception is integral in the Novus Ordo, then it is as well in the TLM. But the fact remains, the faithful are only required to receive their Easter duty. If the faithful receive more, good, but it is not necessary.

As for trumping, you're right, Fr. Celebrant would trump the MC, but the MC (if he's worth his salt) will make his voice heard. It is the MC and the Celebrant together which make the ceremony palatable.

Just because the last two popes wore/wear watches doesn't mean that it should be the norm for all of Holy Mother Church. I think that JPII was no liturgist and Abp. Marini was a terrible one...

As for wearing cufflinks, if they are simple and functional, I would have no problem, but then again, I don't know of any priests who wear ostentatious cufflinks.

Rings baffle me...

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

My point about Holy Communion is that it is the communicant's choice to go to communion. The only time anyone should be denied is if it is known there is a censure or excommunication against them or they are so out of it that don't know how to receive properly. The EF Roman Missal does not have the Rite of Holy Communion for the laity but the OF Roman Missal does and it is integral to the Rite of Holy Communion.

Unknown said...

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that one shouldn't receive Holy Communion frequently, not at all.

However, I do think that prudence should be the rule of the day. If it cannot be determined that the Blessed Sacrament will be treated with the proper reverence and adoration, is it not best to limit it?

I am thinking of Redemptionis Sacramentum 84 (which deals with the OF primarily): Furthermore when Holy Mass is celebrated for a large crowd - for example, in large cities - care should be taken lest out of ignorance non-Catholics or even non-Christians come forward for Holy Communion, without taking into account the Church’s Magisterium in matters pertaining to doctrine and discipline. It is the duty of Pastors at an opportune moment to inform those present of the authenticity and the discipline that are strictly to be observed.

This is based upon Ecclesia de Eucharista 42: The safeguarding and promotion of ecclesial communion is a task of each member of the faithful, who finds in the Eucharist, as the sacrament of the Church's unity, an area of special concern. More specifically, this task is the particular responsibility of the Church's Pastors, each according to his rank and ecclesiastical office. For this reason the Church has drawn up norms aimed both at fostering the frequent and fruitful access of the faithful to the Eucharistic table and at determining the objective conditions under which communion may not be given. The care shown in promoting the faithful observance of these norms becomes a practical means of showing love for the Eucharist and for the Church.

I do think that there are times when the limiting of the Rite of Communion is prudent. I think that it is solidly based upon current Church teaching. While one should frequently receive Holy Communion, it is not always necessary and the integral nature of it need not be questioned.

Anonymous said...

Let me get this straight, Andy Milam. You want to take Holy Communion away from those that attend a Roman Catholic Mass. Wow. All I can say is WOW. The Catholic Church has done enough damage over the years that people are not attending Mass. I wonder what would happen if the Holy Eucharist to the laity was eliminated from the Mass? Think about it.

Unknown said...

No Anonymous, that is NOT what I am saying. Not at all. What I am saying is that prudence should be applied when distributing Holy Communion. At no time have I advocated taking it away. Limiting it's distribution at one particular Mass does not equal removing it from the faithful.

Please do not apply a universal to a particular. Which is what you are doing. You are misconstruing what I am saying.

Anonymous said...

Andy, I do not think I am misconstruing what you are saying at all. When a priest is not available to say a Mass, often times a communion service is put in its place and this service is not necessarily done by a deacon. Take Holy Spirit Church, for example. I happen to know that a certain Sister does communion services there quite freqauently. There is no Mass but there is Holy Communion. You said "why must communion be given to the faithful?" Sounds to me like you do no think the laity should receive at every Mass.

Unknown said...

Then you are mistaken in what you think I am saying. And that is a misconstruance.

A Communion Service is an extraordinary function only to be employed in times of direct need, most appropriately on Sundays, per Redemptionis Sacramentum 164-166. It seems to me that you're saying that this takes place much more often than that. I would assume that Holy Spirit Church isn't so far into the boonies that a priest can't make it for regular celebrations of Holy Mass. If my assumption is wrong, then it would seem that we need to have a discussion on RD 164-166 to see if it is abusive that Sister is having these services.

Regardless of all of that, I am not saying that the reception of Holy Communion should be "eliminated." I am saying that in a particular circumstance it should be limited to the ministers, due to the fact that the uncertainty of distribution to Catholics only is very great.

A final note, it is not my view that the laity should not receive at every Mass, but it is my view that the laity do not need to receive at every Mass. That is a precept of the Church. The faithful, who are duly disposed are only required to receive once a year.

You do misunderstand my view, considering that I have voiced the statement clearly and explicitly, twice now, for your benefit.

Rood Screen said...

Many younger priests and seminarians are personal fans of BXVI. I suspect this "cow lick" thing will soon catch on among them. I'm even thinking of going to the barber this week to get my own hair styled that way. Will the biretta help or hurt afterwards?

Andy Milam,
That's a good question about distribution of Holy Communion at papal Masses. Since Saint Peter's is not a parish church, perhaps your suggestion has some merit. I would argue that even papal Masses at Saint John Lateran and other parish churches, however, should always feature distribution to the congregation, given the principal that sacraments should not be denied to those who seek them worthily.

Hammer of Fascists said...

Anonymous: I must say that you display quite a sense of entitlement.

While I agree with you that the Church has done a lot of damage in recent decades, I think you and I would have a very serious disagreement over the nature of the damage and the appropriate remedies. In this case, with all due respect, your statement reveals a great ignorance regarding the necessity and even propriety of lay reception of Communion. Andy knows what he's talking about.

Hammer of Fascists said...

Fr. Shelton, I read Canon 912 as granting an individual right of someone to receive communion, not a corporate right of the laity or a particular group of laity attending a particular Mass, though that's just my reading. As for Canon 843, it speaks to the availablity of the sacraments, but qualifies it that laity have that right at "appropriate times." So I believe there's some wiggle room there.

Just my $0.02 worth. I'd be interested in your comments.

Unknown said...

I would argue that even then, Holy Communion should be limited. While I do understand the efficacy of reception, I just think that with the sheer numbers, prudence should reign supreme.

If it can be managed in a way by which due reverence as well as proper order can be maintained, then I would be more open to it. However, assisting at more than a few papal Masses, that is rarely the case. The last papal Mass I assisted at in which I received Holy Communion, there were over 50 ciboria and it was a free for all at each station. This was at St. Peter's. I suppose that the Lateran can be more organized, but any such Mass will be necessarily chaotic.

Anonymous said...

good for Andy

Templar said...

Anonymous posters should be disabled by the Blog owner in my humble opinion. You can create a Blog name if you wish to maintain some measure of anonimity, but if you want to post, own the statements.

Even Anon 2 and Anon 5 are identified as unique posters.

Andy: Holy Spirit is 7 miles from St Joseph. Hardly likely it's "extraordinary" function driving Communion services.

Unknown said...


You're spot on, with both accounts. While the individual does have the right to receive Holy Communion, it must be done in accordance with the law. (Can 912)

However, the law speaks of reception at the appropriate time (Can 843 §1). I realize that this can be and is a subjective matter, which is why I bring this up. As a matter of conversation and a point of prudence, is it always and everywhere appropriate to simply distribute Holy Communion to the mob? Can it be discerned that through this action sufficient control of the Blessed Sacrament can be established so as to mitigate desecration? I don't think even the Holy Father would argue that. And that is my point.

I realize that my view amounts to a hill of beans and that in 99.9% of situations it does not apply, but regardless, my point stands.

Marc said...

There's an influx of ignorant and ill-informed, yet uppity anonymous posters on this blog in the last couple days...

Henry Edwards said...

My 2 cents on this goes to Andy. While obviously Holy Communion for the faithful should be the norm in parish settings, it should be possible to also understand that there are exceptional situations, such as big spectaculars (particularly outdoors) where this attitude encourages a cattle-call situation.

The other side of the coin is the great diminution of respect for the Holy Eucharist that I'd suggest has been caused (in part) by the belief that communion by all present is the end-all-be-all of Holy Mass. It is not. The end of the Mass is the offering of the Sacrifice. Communion is the sharing of the fruit of the Sacrifice, desirable but--apart from the celebrant's communion--not necessary; this is basic theology, not a matter of individual opinion.

But the norm of universal reception by all faithful at every Mass simply translates into frequency of sacrilege by communion not in a state of grace, as well as the idea that Mass is primarily a communion service, which it is not.

As for the abuse of communion services when no priest is available, I note only that Redemptoris Sacramentum advises that bishops allow such weekday services only when Mass is not available on Sundays. In my opinion--and this admittedly is a matter of opinion--communion services on weekdays between Sunday Masses should be prohibited (except perhaps for certain special cases. Holy communion should be a more meaningful experience than simply a routine social occasion (as are the weekday communion services I'm familiar with).

Henry Edwards said...

More to the larger point, perhaps, I was looking forward to comment today, at your beloved PrayTell blog, on this "most splendid papal liturgy Rome has seen in 50 years."

But, to my disappointment, there was none. Maybe the folks there are not really interested in splendid liturgy?

Marc said...

Oh, and by the way, Andy, our buddy Pater Ignotus is the pastor at Holy Spirit.

I hope you now have a more complete understanding of where our anonymous posted is coming from...

John Nolan said...

Fr Allan, you say that the EF missal does not have the Rite of Communion for the laity whereas the OF missal does. This is incorrect. In the EF it begins with the Confiteor said by the server or sung by the deacon, followed by the Misereatur and Indulgentiam (The above were made optional in 1962), the Ecce Agnus Dei and three-fold Domine non sum dignus, and the formula said by the priest to each communicant. If there are no communicants (a rarity since Pius X encouraged frequent Communion) this rite is of course omitted.

In the OF the Ecce Agnus Dei precedes the priest's Communion, but if there are no communicants (a Mass sine populo where the server does not communicate), the priest omits the Ecce Agnus Dei, remains facing the altar and says the Domine non sum dignus quietly. [GIRM 268]. Note how the rubrics, both here and elsewhere in the GIRM, assume celebration ad orientem.

The fact that in practice everyone receives Communion at every Mass is due to the virtual abolition of the Eucharistic fast, the decline in sacramental Confession, and the post-V2 over-emphasis on the community meal aspect of the Mass. We seem to have gone from one extreme to the other.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

John, the Rite of Holy Communion for the laity is not in the Roman Missal proper; after the priest's communion it goes director to the ablutions--there are not written prayers for the laity's communion following the priest's communion in other words.

John Nolan said...

Ah, I see - they're not actually included in the altar missal. I'm surprised the 1962 revision left them out. They must be written down somewhere!

Unknown said...


That does shed some light...but I wonder can PI really be THAT liberal?

Henry Edwards, we are in agreement...again. LOL!!!!

Gene said...

I agree about anonymous posters. They should be banned and required to have a consistent identity of some type. I know Kavanaugh (Ignotus) used to come on as a number of different cutesy names, but his hostile and arrogant style always gave him away. His contempt for the blog and Fr. MacDonald have become sort of institutionalized here and serve only as a stimulus for discussions of unbelief, apostasy, liturgical ignorance, and post-Modern bias.
This new anonymous seems to be merely stupid, which Ignotus is not.

Anonymous said...

I had a question about these communion services by the sister at Holy Spirit. I asked the Sisters at St Peter Claver why they don't have them when Fr Dan is off or away. They said it was not appropriate or needed as long as there was a mass close by. Even if all the priests were away they would only consider it on a Sunday, but even then if there are Deacons available they would be the ones to do it not the sisters. Is there a rule or norm for communion services?
On another note, how do I create a name or identity if I want to?

ytc said...

Anonymous, the Church sees Communion services as a rare and exceptional thing. That is, they should not be done routinely, but if they are, only typically on Sundays should they be done. So if Fr. is going for a doctor visit on a random Tuesday but ordinarily celebrates Mass every day publicly, there is no real justifiable reason to have a Communion service. On the other hand, if you are in some desolate place that only sees a priest once a month, then Communion services are more reasonable and probably should be done.

There are several ways to make a handle for use here. The easiest is to click "Name/URL" under Choose an identity and then type in whatever you want to be known as in the "Name" box. You will have to do this each time you comment. Or, you can use a Google Account or OpenID, but you have to sign up for those.

Marc said...

I will let the more knowledgeable amongst us answer your first question.

As for creating an identity, just click the "Name" radio button below your comment and type in a name before you submit your comment. Or you can use a Google ID, which is what the people whose names are in blue are doing. That's the better way to go because then you can get automatic emails that tell you when someone leaves a comment... That's how we are able to respond to each other so quickly and diligently even if the original post is from days ago.

Welcome aboard!

Pater Ignotus said...

Re "Frequent Communion" and "Limiting Communion":

"In the early Church and in the patristic ages, the faithful communicated, or at any rate were expected to communicate, as often as the Holy Eucharist was celebrated (St. John Chrysostom loc. cit.; Apostolic canons, X; St. Gregory the Great, Dial. II, 23)."

"Frequent and daily Communion, as a practice most earnestly desired by Christ our Lord and by the Catholic Church, should be open to all the faithful, of whatever rank and condition of life; so that no one who is in the state of grace, and who approaches the Holy Table with a right and devout intention (recta piaque mente) can be prohibited therefrom." (Sacra Tridentina, Pius X)

"The practice, dating from the first centuries of the Church, of receiving Holy Communion often, as a means of growing in union with God. Weekly reception was customary already in apostolic times. From the end of the second century many priests and laity received every day. By the thirteenth century the practice had so declined that the Fourth Lateran Council had to legislate at least annual Communion at Easter time. In the sixteenth century the Council of Trent urged the reception of Holy Communion at every Mass attended. During the centuries of Jansenist influence, Communion, as a thing most earnestly desired by Christ our Lord and by the Catholic Church should be open to all the faithful" (Denzinger 3375-83). The only conditions required were the state of grace and the right intention. (Fr. John Hardon, Modern Catholic Dictionary)

The perception that the precept for annual reception only of communion is an indication that this is favored or preferred is wrong. The precept requires, at minimum, once a year reception of communion. The Church, officially, encourages far, far greater frequency of reception of communion as evidenced above.

Unknown said...


You can go to blogger and set one up. It's really easy...follow the mouse.

As for Communion services, I would look to Eucharistae Sacramentum #13; Sacrosanctum Concilium #55; 1983 CIC 1248§2; and Directory for Sunday Celebrations in the Absence of a Priest #50.

There is great variance though, because each bishop has his own norms and that is within his privy, as the liturgist of the diocese.

Because a bishop has the right to do something doesn't mean that it is practical or prudent to do it. Sometimes it is best to table something as opposed to employing something which could cause confusion regarding sacramental theology.

Marc said...

No one is arguing to limit Communion nor does anyone disagree that frequent Communion is a good, holy, and spiritually profitable practice.

The discussion is twofold: (1) people must be properly disposed to receive, which entails proper fasting and prayer as well as sacramental Confession; and (2) Communion services conducted by laypeople are a questionable practice is the types of situations we are discussing (a town with 3 parishes where Mass is available everyday of the week).

Of course there are a multitude of reasons why Communion services led by laity should be frowned upon that I don't feel the need to dileanate here as they are so obvious to all but the most willfully obtuse amongst us.

Pater Ignotus said...

Marc - You state "No one is arguing to limit communion." Andy stated, "I would argue that even then, Holy Communion should be limited." (Jan 7, 1:45 p.m.)

And, "If it cannot be determined that the Blessed Sacrament will be treated with the proper reverence and adoration, is it not best to limit it?" (Jan 7, 11:05 a.m.)

And, "I am saying that in a particular circumstance it should be limited to the ministers,..." (Jan 7, 12:04 p.m.)

And, "Limiting it's distribution at one particular Mass does not equal removing it from the faithful." (Jan 7, 11:18 a.m.)

Yes, "someone" is indeed arguing that communion should be limited.

Shelly said...

Re: Word and Communion services - the parish I am in is quite isolated, so we have trained and "instituted" lay leaders who lead these on the occasion a priest is unable to journey over for Sunday Mass. Sunday only. A few years back we were lucky to have a priest once a month, so a handout was provided regarding the Communion services. It specifically stated that these were not to be "planned events". They were only allowed in emergency or unusual situations due to the lack of a priest, and if memory serves correctly, for Sabbath and Holy Days only.

Or, just what Andy Milam said :-).

Marc said...

Kavanaugh, Andy is talking about avoiding sacrilege. He and I would both agree, I'm sure, that the distribution is not to be limited where it can be some in a manner that avoids sacrilege and the people are properly disposed to commune.

So, yes, Communion services should be discontinued in most cases because it is a sacrilege.

The phrase "limiting Communion" is not apropos when talking about whether to distribute the Sacrament to non-Catholics, for example, as they are not entitled to its reception in the first place. Perhaps a better phrase would be "refusing Communion" and no one is arguing Communion should be refused to properly disposed Catholics when there is no danger of sacrilege.

Perhaps you would be assisted by reading his posts in their proper context. His point is not a complex one - it's actually very simple.

Pater Ignotus said...

Marc - Here's the "context" from Andy hisself: "... but it is my view that the laity do not need to receive at every Mass. That is a precept of the Church"

No, that is not a precept of the Church." The precept is "To receive Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist at least once a year during Easter Season." It is based on the Church expressed desire that the faithful recieve more frequently, even daily. ""Frequent and daily Communion, as a practice most earnestly desired by Christ our Lord and by the Catholic Church, should be open to all the faithful, of whatever rank and condition of life; so that no one who is in the state of grace, and who approaches the Holy Table with a right and devout intention (recta piaque mente) can be prohibited therefrom." (Sacra Tridentina, Pius X)

Marc said...

Kavanaugh - It is a precept of the Church that the laity need not receive Communion at every Mass. It is also a precept that the laity must receive Communion once a year during Easter. The two precepts are not mutually exclusive as you incorrectly assume.

Frequent Communion is, as we all agree, a holy practice. But, that practice presupposes one is properly disposed to receive. That includes proper fasting, prayer, and Sacramental Confession, as is reinforced by what you've quoted.

Now, perhaps you are reading Andy to say the Rite of Distribution of Communion to the laity should in some instances be removed from the Mass...? If that is how you read his comments, I have not drawn the same conclusion from what he's written. I read his comment to mean that individual laity need not receive Communion at every Mass at which they assist.

Even so, we know there is no need for the laity to receive (or be offered Holy Communion) at the Mass for it to be a valid liturgy. Nor should that stop laity from attending as the Church teaches that the Mass itself conveys grace and spiritual communions are profitable toward salvation. So, even if Andy was proposing Masses be offered as such on occasion, the teaching and history of the Chuch's liturgical practice backs up his assertion.

Anonymous said...

I also was bothered a couple of years ago about the sister's communion service at Holy Spirit church.
There are other abuses of the Eucharist happening by those sister at that parish...seen it firsthand.
Weekday communion services by the non-ordained when a deacon is available (actually in the congregation during the communion service!) has happened recently even at this blog author's parish...sad, but true.



Unknown said...


Interestingly enough, if you notice at no time do I say there shouldn't be a Rite of Communion. In certain instances, I am in favor of limiting it to the ministers at the altar, some of whom are lay members of the faithful.

For centuries and even after Pope St. Pius X's statement, papal Masses didn't include reception of Holy Communion of the faithful, for the EXACT reason that I speak of.

Just thought you'd like to know.

Marc said...

Andy, I think we cross-posted. I hope my last comment accurately reflects your previous comments. If not, I apologize.

From my own experience as a catechist, I know people are confused about this. Many believe they MUST receive Communion if they go to Mass. They have not been taught what the Mass is and it's purpose. We are seeing in this thread both the cause and result of that lack of understanding.

Unknown said...

Ah....we did. I didn't see that. Thank you for your support. You're absolutely correct, most people and even many priests don't know the true purpose of the Mass.

We should connect. I am a catechist for my diocese. I would love to compare notes sometime, so as to broaden my scope. I am always looking for a good theological discussion.

Pater Ignotus said...

Marc - It is not a precept of the Church "that the laity need not receive Communion at every Mass." There are seven precepts (or five depending on your source) and not one of them is "that the laity need not receive Communion at every Mass."

The precept in question was designed to encourage reception of communion, not based on or to encourage the idea that "that the laity need not receive Communion at every Mass."

This is not about proper disposition, about fasting, or about the validity of the mass.

You stand corrected - again.

Marc said...

Kavanaugh - You'll note that I wrote precept, not Precept (with a capital "P"). The lack of capitalization indicates I was using the word "precept" in its normal, non-technical meaning. That usage is also clear from the context of what I wrote.

The precept about which I am speaking is as follows: "If any one saith, that Masses, wherein the priest alone communicates sacramentally, are unlawful, and are, therefore, to be abrogated; let him be anathema."

And since the entire question is your interpretation of what someone else wrote when they were clearly addressing the issue of ensuring proper disposition amongst the laity when receiving Communion in order to avoid sacrilege, this is about disposition, fasting, and Communion.

Following the example of the other commenters here, I refuse to engage you further.

Unknown said...

Lest those reading this blog be confused, there are 6 precepts to the Catholic Church. Along with the 10 Commandments give the faithful a base from which to start learning and assessing his faith. The 6 precepts of the Church are:

1. To attend Holy Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation and to refrain from servile work
2. To Confess our sins at least once a year (traditionally done during Lent)
3. To receive Holy Communion at least once a year during the Easter Season (known as the "Easter duty")
4. To observe the days of fasting and abstinence
5. To help contribute to the support of our pastors and provide for the needs of the Church according to one's abilities and station in life
6. To obey the marriage laws of the Church

One can argue all he wants that this is not accurate, but he would be wrong. The Church has consistently taught this. While the Catechism of the Catholic Church lists 5, the sixth also does exist via the Code of Canon Law and is as important as the others.

Pater Ignotus said...

Marc - there is no "p"recept of the Church that states that laity don't need to recieve more than once a year. The "p"recept you mention speaks not to the need of the laity, but to the liceity of the mass.

Andy - there is a traditional seventh Precept: "To participate in the Church's mission of Evangelization of Souls.(Missionary Spirit of the Church)"

While some choose to encourage less frequent communion by the laity, I choose, again, to stand with the Church's official teaching: "Frequent and daily Communion, as a practice most earnestly desired by Christ our Lord and by the Catholic Church, should be open to all the faithful, of whatever rank and condition of life; so that no one who is in the state of grace, and who approaches the Holy Table with a right and devout intention (recta piaque mente) can be prohibited therefrom." (Sacra Tridentina, Pius X)

Unknown said...


One would hope that if certain pastors are quick to support Sacra Tridentina, issued and approved by Pope St. Pius X in 1905, then they would also be quick to support Tra le Sollecitudini, issued and approved by Pope St. Pius X in 1903, written a scant two years earlier, nearly to the day.

In the latter, we find that pianos, bands and profane (read: secular) pieces of music are forbidden for use; since the support for both documents should be the same.

I wait, anxiously, to hear that said pianos and profane songs have been removed in the parishes in which these two documents are presumably being supported, fully. It's only logical.

Marc said...

Andy, I have not attended Mass at a parish where Sacr Tridentina was used to admonish the laity toward proper reception of Holy Communion as proposed by others in this thread.

I have, however, been inside the Church the its main proponent here. I am sure the maracas and guitars (I vaguely recall drums or a piano being there, but I could be mistaken) placed prominently in the front of the Church about 10 feet from the Altar are not an indication that Tra le Sollecitudini isn't being followed. Surely those banned, profane instruments are merely decorative.

As you point out, surely no one would be so duplicitous as to follow one instruction and not the other given their closeness in issuing from the Pope and the significance which they carry.

Unknown said...


I agree with you about the duplicity.

I would hope that he who is so stringent about Sacra Tridentina would be as stringent about not tolerating, encouraging or supporting the use of forbidden instrumentation and/or profane music; as presented in Tra le Sollecitudini.

I would think that intellectual and practical honesty should rule the day.

Marko Ivančičević said...

did anyone notice the priest from the Vidimus Stellam video at 1:20 - he makes a little sign of the cross with the Host - just like in the EF :)

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Yes, I did!