Monday, February 04, 2008

Communion in the Hand

Maybe not such a good idea after all, says Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith, Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship. My friend Richard sent me a copy of a Catholic News Service story on the Archbishop's negative view, a practice that was "introduced abusively and hurriedly in some spheres" and only later authorized by the Vatican. But I can't find a link for it. [ADDENDUM: Closed Cafeteria gives the text here.]

But I did find an article on The Remnant's website. Says His Excellency:

Whatever the reasons for this practice, we cannot ignore what is happening worldwide where this practice has been implemented. This gesture has contributed to a gradual weakening of the attitude of reverence towards the sacred Eucharistic species whereas the previous practice had better safeguarded that sense of reverence. There instead arose an alarming lack of recollection and a general spirit of carelessness. We see communicants who often return to their seats as if nothing extraordinary has happened... In many cases, one cannot discern that sense of seriousness and inner silence that must signal the presence of God in the soul.

Then there are those who take away the sacred species to keep them as souvenirs, those who sell, or worse yet, who take them away to desecrate it in Satanic rituals. Even in large concelebrations, also in Rome, several times the sacred species has been found thrown onto the ground.

. . . .

Now I think that it is high time to review and re-evaluate such good practices and, if necessary, to abandon the current practice that was not called for by Sacrosanctum Concilium, nor by the Fathers, but was only accepted after its illegitimate introduction in some countries. Now, more than ever, we must help the faithful to renew a deep faith in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharistic species in order to strengthen the life of the Church and defend it in the midst of dangerous distortions of the faith that this situation continues to cause.
Read the rest of the article here.