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Saturday, 12 December 2009

For your edification and sanctification

"The dispensing of Christ's Body belongs to the priest for three reasons. First, because, as was said above, he consecrates in the person of Christ. But as Christ consecrated His Body at the Supper, so also He gave it to others to be partaken of by them. Accordingly, as the consecration of Christ's Body belongs to the priest, so likewise does the dispensing belong to him. Secondly, because the priest is the appointed intermediary between God and the people, hence as it belongs to him to offer the people's gifts to God, so it belongs to him to deliver the consecrated gifts to the people. Thirdly, because out of reverence towards this Sacrament, nothing touches it but what is consecrated, hence the corporal and the chalice are consecrated, and likewise the priest's hands, for touching this sacrament. Hence it is not lawful for anyone else to touch it, except from necessity, for instance, if it were to fall upon the ground, or else in some other case of urgency."
Thomas Aquinas, Saint and Doctor of the Church ST, III, Q. 82, Art. 13.


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Bishop Athanasius Schneider visited Estonia December 10, 2009, for the publication of his book Dominus est in Estonian. After the presentation, Bishop Schneider celebrated a Missa Cantata in the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul.

In the book presentation the Bishop explained how the present form of hand communion has nothing to do with the practise of hand communion in the early centuries. The new way was adapted by some liberal priests in Holland directly from the Calvinists in 1965.

The Bishop ultimately decided to write a book defending the traditional way of receiving Holy Communion, and when the work was finished he gave a manuscript to the Holy Father. The Pope wrote back to the Bishop praising the work and his accuracy of knowledge of the patristics.

Bishop Schneider told he had also asked the Pope to stop distributing Communion in the hand in Papal Masses, and even if the Pope's answer was supportive it was not certain that it would happen. But since only a few months later, all communicants have been asked to receive Holy Communion from the Pope only kneeling and on the tongue. A true miracle, says Bishop Schneider.
Reprinted from the source blog Summorum—Rippumaton Blogi Katolisesta Liturgiasta with their translation from the original Estonian.


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"What does it mean to receive communion in the mouth? What does it mean to kneel before the Most Holy Sacrament? What does it mean to kneel during the consecration at Mass? It means adoration, it means recognizing the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist; it means respect and an attitude of faith of a man who prostrates before God because he knows that everything comes from Him, and we feel speechless, dumbfounded, before the wondrousness, his goodness, and his mercy. That is why it is not the same to place the hand, and to receive communion in any fashion, than doing it in a respectful way; it is not the same to receive communion kneeling or standing up, because all these signs indicate a profound meaning. What we have to grasp is that profound attitude of the man who prostrates himself before God, and that is what the Pope wants.
Antonio Cardinal Ca帽izares Llovera, PREFECT OF THE CONGREGATION FOR DIVINE WORSHIP AND THE SACRAMENTSOriginal Spanish source
From the Hermeneutic of Continuity
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[92.] Although each of the faithful always has the right to receive Holy Communion on the tongue, at his choice, if any communicant should wish to receive the Sacrament in the hand, in areas where the Bishops’ Conference with the recognitio of the Apostolic See has given permission, the sacred host is to be administered to him or her. However, special care should be taken to ensure that the host is consumed by the communicant in the presence of the minister, so that no one goes away carrying the Eucharistic species in his hand. If there is a risk of profanation, then Holy Communion should not be given in the hand to the faithful.
From INSTRUCTION REDEMPTIONIS SACRAMENTUM: On certain matters to be observed or to be avoided regarding the Most Holy Eucharist - CONGREGATION FOR DIVINE WORSHIP AND THE DISCIPLINE OF THE SACRAMENT.
161. If Communion is given only under the species of bread, the priest raises the host slightly and shows it to each, saying, Corpus Christi (The Body of Christ). The communicant replies, Amen, and receives the Sacrament either on the tongue or, where this is allowed and if the communicant so chooses, in the hand. As soon as the communicant receives the host, he or she consumes it entirely.
From INSTITUTIO GENERALIS MISSALIS ROMANI (GENERAL INSTRUCTION OF THE ROMAN MISSAL).
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4 comments:

Anonymous said...

The way the bishops are re acting to the H1N1 virus is such an over reaction. It reminds me of the movie 28 Days Later. The whole population of England succumbed to a virus. If h1n1 were so severe wouldn't we see more percautions in the general society, rather than just the way Catholics receive communion? I think the virus is just a front, smoke and mirrors to something more sinister.

Joseph

Anonymous said...

The fact that the Holy Father has promoted by example communion on the tongue is really quite significant. It's really too bad most of the Canadian bishops, including Archbishop Collins, are working at cross purposes with Benedict XI. It's sad when you realize that with just a little thought any number of ways could have been found to limit the possibility of contagion without denying those who wish to receive on the tongue their lawful rights.

John Vicente

John Vicente said...

Do you know if Bishop Schneider's book is available in English?

Vox Cantoris said...

Yes!

It is published by the Newman House Press.

http://jhcnewman.org/index.html