Saturday, December 31, 2011

Tongue/Hand and Bread/Wine and Either and Both


So how's Christmas going?

Lovely,I tried to keep it focused on Christ. I hear that you Catholics do that.

We try. Of course that's what the celebration is about. Without the birth of Our Savior, Jesus, they'd be no Christmas.

We agree on that, for sure. I bet the music at your Midnight Mass was special.

Yes, and the flowers, and the Readings.

Was the Mass different?

You mean the celebration of the Eucharist, itself?

Oh yeah! What did you do for a Christmas Eucharist?

You mean the Consecration of the Bread and Wine into the Body and Blood of Jesus?

yes

That is always the same. The same words that Jesus used.

Well what about the people receiving Communion?

What do you mean?

At the Mass you took me to, some people went to the priest, some to regular people, some had wine, and some knelt down, some bowed, and I couldn't follow what was happening.

Mmmmmm You've just hit a hot button issue -- how best to receive Communion. It's personal preference. Some priests prefer Communion on the tongue, and some prefer Communion in the hand. Some people, likewise. The same with the kneeling, and bowing. That's the way some show reverence. Most people in the United States take Communion in the hand. We call receiving the Bread and the Wine receiving both Species. Actually, that's a matter of practicality: whether there's time, the ministers to distribute Communion, and the occasion. The Bread and Wine is the fuller form. However, we Catholics believe Christ is present in even the One Form.

So who do you know to go to? Which line?

LOL! The closest to your seat.

What if you're in AA and can't drink the wine?

Then don't. I don't, not because I'm in AA, but because I had Cronkhite Canada Syndrome and it's so rare that it's not sure how it's carried. I'm probably not a carrier, but why take the chance when I can receive Christ, wholly and entirely, and receive the necessary grace for my salvation, in the Bread alone?

What if you have celiac disease?

The same. The Wine or better to call it, the Precious Blood, is wholly and entirely the true Sacrament, and the same grace is given, just like the Sacred Host. So celiacs only take the Precious Blood.

Wow.

You can say that again. WOW.

If you Catholics really believe that, then why aren't you all receiving Communion on your knees?


Good question. Very good question! Because we're Americans? Because it would take too long? Because too many are elderly and can't? Because it's not comfortable? .......all of the above. As you noticed some people do. Others may think that's too show-offy. Matt. 6:6 Some pastors have asked people not to. It takes too long. What can I say? It really is a pastoral decision. But one or two people kneeling isn't too time consuming. But wait a minute. Don't get hung up on posture. It's important to receive Communion with faith and devotion whether kneeling or not?

I see.

I'll take you to some Masses where Communion is distributed by the intinction of the Host.

Huh?

You'll see.

OK. That'll be interesting.

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