Wednesday, March 26, 2008

More on communion in the hand!

You may remember this post on communion in the hand. Well, I came across some quotes on this infamous practice I thought you might like. And since the argument in favor of this sacrilege I hear most often is "that's how they did it in the early church", I have some early church fathers here as well to give you their feelings. Good reading, this!

Pope St. Sixtus I (circa 115)
He prohibited the faithful even to touch the Sacred Vessels: "Statutum est ut sacra vasa non ab aliis quam a sacratis Dominoque dicatis Contrectentur Hominbus..." (Read Num. 4: 15 Only the priests).

Pope St. Eutycbian (275-283 AD)
He forbade the faithful to take the Sacred Host in their hand.

St. Basil the Great (330-379 AD)
"The right to receive Holy Communion in the Hand is permitted only in time of Persecution." He considered Communion in the hand so irregular that he did not hesitate to consider it a grave fault.

The Council of Saragossa (380 AD)
It was decided to punish with EXCOMMUNICATION anyone who dared to continue the Practice of Holy Communion in the hand. The Synod of Toledo Confirmed the Decree.

Pope St. Leo the Great (440-461 AD)
The practice of administering Holy Communion on the tongue of the Faithful was energetically defended and faithfully obeyed.

The Synod of Rouen (650 AD)
"Do not put the Eucharist in the hands of any layman, but only in their mouths." Thus, again Communion in the hand was condemned as an abuse.

The 6th Ecumenical Council, III of Constantinople (680-681)
It forbade the faithful to take the Sacred Host in their hand, threatening transgressors with Excommunication.

St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274 AD)
"The Body of Christ must not be touched by anyone, other than a Consecrated Priest. No other person has the right to touch it, except in case of extreme necessity.” (Read “Inestimabile Donum”).

The Council of Trent (1545-1565 AD)
"The fact that only the Priest gives Holy Communion with his consecrated hands is an apostolic tradition."

Pope Paul VI (1963-1978 AD)
" ... This Method [on the tongue] must be retained..." ("Memoriale Domini").

Pope John Paul II
"To touch the sacred species and to distribute them with their own hands is a privilege of the ordained." (Dominicae Cenae, 11).

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