Monday, March 6, 2017


I've been in my new parish now since the end of June. Like almost every other parish in the world 🌎 Catholics receive Holy Communion in a variety of ways, some very reverently and others in the most peculiar ways, not intending to be irreverent, but it looks it nonetheless.

While I continue to advocate for the longer tradition in the Latin Rite of kneeling for Holy Communion and receiving on the tongue (as these "appear in sign value" to be more reverent and thus enhances the recovery of reverence in the Ordinary Form) I realize that standing for Holy Communion and the option of receiving in the hand is written in the rubrics of the OF's Roman Missal's General Instruction. I have no authority to prevent anyone from receiving in the hand or on the tongue!

But this is what I have seen at my new parish and in fact it happens in every parish in terms of abuse of the manner in which Holy Communion is received in the hand and the horrible sacrilege that often occurs if only in a tiny minority of communicants who receive in the hand:

1. Grabbing the Host
2. The pinched figure over the other hand reception of the Host
3. Both hands extended side by side
4. The hands in motion as one receives on the run 🏃
5. The one handed reception of Holy Communion especially when carrying a child but often simply one handed, dropping the hand downward to move the host to the fingers in order to bring the Host to the mouth!

The sacrilege, whether intended or not (and seen recently in new parish and other parishes):

1. Walking off with the Host without consuming it!
2. (Two weeks ago in my parish as reported to me by an eyewitness after Mass): Taking the Host and walking off with it, taking a bite out of it and keeping the remaining!
3. Self-intinction
4. Spillage of the Precious Blood from the common chalice on the floor creating such a splatter that people walked over the Precious Blood unaware of the sacrilege
5. Particles of the Sacred Species remaining on the palms and fingers of communicants and nonchalantly discarded

What have you seen and why is the Magisterium so unconcerned about these happenings which never happens when Holy Communion is received kneeling and on the tongue??????

I am currently making plans to catechize my parish this Easter Season on the correct way to receive Holy Communion in the hand or on the tongue.


rcg said...

Please share with us what you tell them and their ressponses.

Gene said...

Face it...the Church is a hopeless mess from top to bottom. I don't know what will fix it.

Anonymous said...

It having been many years since I've attended an OF Sunday Mass, or a daily OF Mass with no altar rail or with reception from the chalice, I've not recently seen any abuses in reception of Holy Communion, or anyone receiving with other than the most reverent and prayerful demeanor. What's the mystery about all this?

Seriously, I don't understand what motivates preference or even insistence for means--like receiving in the hands while standing--that facilitate or even encourage irreverence. The arguments against these practices is obvious. But why on earth does anyone argue in favor of them? Can anyone tell me what fuels disagreement on this? (Other than simply inertia.)

TJM said...

The Church caved on Communion in the Paw and then rewarded rank disobedience and allowed it as an option.

Back in the late 1960s an uber liberal "catholic" walked up for Communion to an old Italian priest in our parish and when she stuck out her paw, Father slapped her hand and she never tried that stunt on him again! FYI, by nature, this priest was the most kindly and gentle man there ever was. The school children would line up for his Confessional because he was such a wonderful man. But when it came to someone profaning the Eucharist, he was a Lion!

Anonymous said...

My parish Priest also devoted one sermon to explain the proper way to receive the Eucharist. My opinion is that priests should instruct their parishioners how to receive sacraments quarterly, particularly Eucharist and confession. How to attend Mass also might be beneficial. Some parishes have unique ways of handling both liturgy and confessions, a little explaining helps new people out.

George said...

"I am currently making plans to catechize my parish this Easter Season on the correct way to receive Holy Communion in the hand or on the tongue. "

Yes, unfortunately in our day and age this is necessary. I suppose one time to do it would be just prior to the beginning of Mass, but it must be done.

Anonymous said...

Bee here:

I don't know where the photo at the head of this post was taken, but I love the guy wearing the light blue shirt kneeling at the rail, with his too short socks, gym shoes, with elbows on the communion rail!

Oh man! Fr. McD, you have your work cut out for you. :-)

God bless.

Anonymous said...

Oh My God! Your fingers are wrongly positioned! The overlap of your palms is 28 degrees from that which is required!

WHAT? Side by side hands? This is a SACRILEDGE! This is UNACCEPTABLE!

I can see your ankles! You can't receive communion in that state, you heathen!

And they wonder why people leave.......

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I'd love to see the table manners in your house as it appears that etiquette is thrown out the window by you. Odd to say the least. I guess you've been cooked in the crock pot of praising everyone for everything thus diminishing worthy praise all together.

TJM said...

Anonymous at 9:57

Why don't you go back to Pray Sniff where you belong. You add NOTHING to the discussion. Thanks for confirming you are committed to failure.

Asbury Fox said...

A parish does not need to give Communion under both kinds. The pastor and priests can celebrate Mass under one species. Giving the faithful only the Sacred Host will go a long way in increasing reverence in the real presence of Christ and eliminate problems with spillage, germs, and sickness, associated with the chalice.

Anonymous said...

My table manners, learned from my mother, are fine. Liturgical etiquette does not require the absurd, enforced uniformity.

"Oh No! Her hands are side by side! Sacrilege!"

No, it's not. It does not even enter into the universe of sacrilege.

TJM said...

Anonymous at 12:31


Anonymous said...

often the error is made of focusing only on how to receive when first we should stress who we receive. When the reality of Christs presence and who he really is is communicated much of the HOW will take care of it self.
As a convert as I more fully comprehended the real presence I had the inner urge to kneel and receive on the tongue. Thankfully my priest at the time was supportive. I have been exclusively receiving kneeling on the tongue at every Mass every where for about 7 years as a witness to the real presence. My suggestion to other laypeople is if you can get down and up without causing a scene, just do it and don't make a big deal of it. You may occasionally get some guff, maybe even from a Priest, but if it is really Christ the King then shouldn't you be Kneeling?
Saint Michel the Arch Angel defend us in battle ....

rcg said...

Anon at 4:37. Absolutely.

Anon At Other Times: the idea is to look for an expression of reverence and respect not only for God but for the people worshiping with you.

TJM said...


For Anon at Other Times, it's all about me, me, me, me!

Anonymous said...

Receiving in the hand was never the "correct" way to receive Holy Communion. Teach them only on the tongue. I am a catechist and have done this.

Anonymous said...

Father, you forgot to mention people receiving Holy Communion with dirty hands and with a very bad breath especially during morning Masses, people who evidently have not washed their faces, people with pierced tongues and long nails....

Anonymous said...

Anonymous "you troll" Fr. doesn't need your "instruction".

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 7:14. Apparently, he does. His idiosyncratic fixation on the placement of the hands, the color of the eye shadow, the length of women's dresses, the visibility of men's knees all indicate that he needs help - and lots of it.

Anonymous said...

You left out one of the ugliest!: cupping the one hand and dropping one's head/mouth down to the palm to suck the host up like it's feeding time at the trough! Sooouuuey!