The Reception of Holy Communion in the United States

There is a great post about the posture of receiving Holy Communion in the United States(standing and in the hand). This practice has a very shady background in the way that it was forced on us and and a break with the Church’s long standing tradition. Most bishops were against the change, but games were played and we have been suffering from the results of this practice ever since. Christian Browne makes some really good points that would should all prayerfully reflect on.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the close of the Second Vatican Council. Pope Francis has decided to mark the occasion with the “Year of Mercy.” Despite much happy-talk and positive papal press, it is a time of foreboding in the Church. The anxiety over the coming Synod on the Family is substantial and growing, with the German bishops’ recent moves to formally ignore the Church’s teachings on sexual morality and the family. Their corruption, and the decayed state of the Church in Europe, is a source of much distress.

The social and political situation in the United States is also of concern. Soon, the Supreme Court may declare homosexual “marriage” a constitutional right. The Obama era has been marked by a series of assaults on religious liberty and the Church’s future ability to freely exercise its prerogatives is uncertain.

It seems an apt time, therefore, for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) to take stock of the state of affairs ad intra Eccelsiam. By clearly examining the health of the inner life of the American Church, the bishops can lay a better foundation for dealing with the challenges from the outside.

Of particular concern these fifty years after the Council ought to be the changes made to the liturgy in the United States in the late 1960s and 1970s, implemented by, and under the authority of, the bishops’ conference. And the most fundamental of these changes relates to the manner of reception of Holy Communion at Mass, whereby the vast majority of today’s communicants receive Communion in the hand while standing.

Read the whole post here.

H/t to Father Jerabek

4 thoughts on “The Reception of Holy Communion in the United States

  1. As far as reverence of the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus, I think we should start with some of the clergy. I’ve seen some priests when transferring the Host from one chalice to the other or to the ciborium treat the blessed Hosts like they were transferring candy from one dish to the other just pouring it in. The blessed Hosts should be placed reverently in other chalices. If the clergy start showing more reverence to the Blessed Sacrament then it would help the people to understand why it is Sacred. I’m talking about some priests and I’m sure most of them are doing this without realizing what this looks like. I’ve seen other actions that could be corrected to show reverence and is not done. You know that priests are always on display and what the people see they copy. I will say that I have been blessed to have several priests in my parish that are very excellent priests even though some actions should be reflected upon.

    • This has come about for the same reason. Today, anyone can touch the Sacred Host. In some parishes there are more Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion than there are people in the church. Priests are told to sit down, while lay people distribute Holy Communion. Communion patens were done away with. Communion in the Hand and standing has contributed greatly to all of the lack of belief in the Real Presence and has even effected some priests, who act as if they don’t believe in the Real Presence. All should read “Dominos Est” by Bishop Athanasius Schnider. Here is his interview on EWTN.

      • You can count at any given mass how few are they who are receiving on the tongue

  2. Fr. Finelli, again you amaze me with your wanting to educate and bring the faithful into a deeper understanding of our faith. The Lord is truly working overtime in you. Thank you for your site and beautiful love for our Lord.

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