QUAERITUR: Consecrating Hosts apart from the consecration during Mass

I got this very serious question via e-mail.  I am horrified by what I read here, but I don’t have time to look up the concrete references.  I am betting some of you can.  I just don’t have time today.

I have a question and have searched for a document or something and don’t know where else to look.

In our parish, we have a chapel that doesn’t have a tabernacle.  It is some distance from the main church.  We have recently run out of hosts on a number of occasions.  On three of these, the celebrant has sent the sacristan to the sacristy to bring hosts and he then recites the consecration over these hosts and finishes giving communion.  He seems to be adverse to breaking the consecrated hosts, and on one occasion this would not have sufficed.

This strikes me as wrong, and the first time I saw it you could probably have knocked me over with a feather.  Where do I go to read up on this?  My pastor and I have talked about this, but he is not sure what to say either.

This sort of thing really disturbs me.  The consecration of the Eucharist is not to be done apart from the double-consecration at Mass even if it is during Mass itself.  The only exception I can think of would be when, for example, the chalice was discovered to contain not wine but perhaps water or something else.  In that case, the priest would immediately have to consecrate the Precious Blood before Mass could proceed.  The same does not apply with consecrating more Hosts.  Nor does it really apply to the main Host for Mass, since it would be obvious to the priest handling it that something wasn’t right (unless perhaps he was blind, etc. etc. etc.).

 

If it was discovered that there were not enough Hosts, and breaking wasn’t going to work, I think you would simply have to tell people what happened and assure them that they fulfilled their Mass obigation, and perhaps suggest making a spiritual communion.  That happened to me at a parish I was visiting.  The pastor told me there were Hosts in the tabernacle, but there weren’t.  So, I just had to explain the situation.  No one freaked out.

But it is simply WRONG to consecrate Hosts apart from the two-fold consecration.

Maybe someone else has more USEFUL information to impart here, some references or citations.  Don’t just chime it with anecdotes or snark.

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72 Responses to QUAERITUR: Consecrating Hosts apart from the consecration during Mass

  1. Fr. Z.:

    I would refer you and readers to Canon 927 of the CIC:

    It is absolutely wrong, even in urgent and extreme necessity, to consecrate one element without the other, or even to consecrate both outside the Eucharistic celebration.

    The first part in Latin: “Nefas est, urgente etiam extrema necessitate alteram materiam sine altera… consecrare.

    The word “nefas” is particularly powerful – meaning “an act of wickedness” “, a “horror.” Or, as my canon law professor put it, “it doesn’t get much worse than “nefas”.

    In other words, don’t do it, ever, for any reason.

  2. David Andrew says:

    Here’s a link I found that should be helpful:

    http://www.ewtn.com/library/liturgy/zlitur82.htm

    (sorry, you have to do a “cut and paste” into your browser).

  3. Tim Ferguson says:

    We can turn to our old friend, the Code of Canon Law and see, clearly and plainly, canon 927: “It is absolutely wrong, even in urgent and extreme necessity to consecrate one element without the other, or even to consecrate both outside the eucharistic celebration.” This is almost a word-for-word transliteration of the law in the 1917 (c. 817), so it is not something new.

    The Code uses the phrase “Nefas est” for “It is absolutely wrong.” This is one of only four instances that the Code uses this very strong prohibitive language. (the other three are c. 983, on maintaining the seal of the confessional; c. 1026 on not forcing anyone to get ordained against their will; and c. 1190 forbiding the sale of relics). This shows just how strong this prohibition is.

    The excellent British Commentary on the Code, Letter and Spirit says, nefas “implies something so unlawful as to be almost unthinkable – it is clear that this is a most serious prohibition. No reason will excuse from observing the law, not even ‘urgent and extreme necessity’. The canon is not a matter of purely positive law; it is based on the fact that the Mass follows the rite used by Our Lord at the Last Supper.” (p. 508f)

    I would urge this correspondent to contact the diocesan authorities in this case, since it is a very serious matter.

  4. Prof. Basto says:

    If done with a sacrilegous purpose, it is one of the graviora delicta (most grave crimes), reserved for the judgement of the CDF under the Motu Proprio Sacramentorum sanctitatis tutela , art. 2, paragraph 2:

    “§ 2. Also reserved to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is the delict which consists in the consecration for a sacrilegious purpose of one matter without the other in a Eucharistic celebration, or even of both outside of the Eucharistic celebration.[19] One who has perpetrated this delict is to be punished according to the gravity of the crime, not excluding dismissal or deposition.”

    But even if the intention is not sacrilegous, it is a practice most stringently condemned by canon 927. Not only prohibited, but prohibited and condemned, as stated by Fr. Rob Johansen above.

    It is worthwhile also to have a look at the Tridentine Missal’s chapter “De Defectibus”, that can be found at: http://www.the-pope.com/dedefect.html It contains, however, no norms for the situation described in the post (lack of hosts for the faithful), indicating that, unlike the lack of a host for the consumption of the Priest, the lack of sufficient hosts for the faithful is not an essential defect of the Mass, and requires no action from the celebrant. Those people will simply not take Holy Communion.

    To proceed to a new consacration is simply wrong in the case above.

  5. John says:

    I think this priest needs some prayers. While we’re on the subject of Hosts, can anyone tell me what if anything our Church says on the timeframe a
    Host should be kept in the Tabernacle before it is changed-Like for Adoration

  6. Canon #927 reads “It is absolutely wrong, even in urgent and extreme necessity, to consecrate one element with out the other, or even to consecrate both outside the eucharistic celebration.” The words used for “absolutely wrong” are the Latin “nefas est”. We were taught in this context they mean, “it is blasphemy”.

  7. Charles says:

    Doesn’t nefas mean “unspeakable” (from fateor)? A most serious word!

  8. John Fannon says:

    If the Sacred Hosts have all been consumed, why can’t the priest distribute unconsecrated hosts dipped into the Consecrated Wine?

    I was present at a Mass at a Chapel of Ease in our parish some 20 years ago, where this occurred.
    On discussing this after Mass with the Priest he said that this was common practice in the African missions where it was often impossible to assess with any accuracy the number of communicants

  9. Both OK? says:

    My reading of Canon 927 says that it could be permissible to consecrate BOTH again because distribution of communion is still part of the Eucharistic celebration.

    It doesn’t look like the priest mentioned above did this, but I was just wondering.

    Yes? No? Maybe?

  10. ben whitworth says:

    Could the offending celebrant possibly be a convert from Anglicanism?
    The Book of Common Prayer proposes precisely this expedient if the
    bread should run out.

    Clearly it’s uncanonical. Is it even valid?

    John: if I remember correctly from my days as a sacristan, the rule is – consecrate within two weeks of baking; consume within two weeks of consecrating. There are others here who can correct that if I’m mistaken.

  11. Tim Ferguson says:

    John, there may have been some sort of missionary indult given for that practice (I’m not aware of one, but I’m also not aware of there *not* being one), but it seems that such practice is contrary to norms on receiving the Precious Blood. The manners that were approved are simple reception from the chalice, intinction by the minister (with Holy Communion being received on the tongue) and reception through a silver straw (a fistula). The last form was dropped in more recent liturgical law, but was not explicitly abrogated, so it would seem to still be permitted where it has been practiced (if that’s anywhere).

    Receiving the Precious Blood by dipping some foreign element in it such as an unconsecrated host would seem to me to be odd. Also, if the priests have a difficult time assessing with any accuracy the number of communicants, how can they be certain to consecrate enough wine? It would also seem logical, if this happened more than once, to start consecrating a superabundance of hosts. If too many hosts are consecrated, they can always be reserved, or, if Mass is being celebrated at a venue without a tabernacle, consumed by the ministers reverently after distribution.

    I think Fr. Z’s approach is best – if the hosts cannot be broken, or if even breaking the hosts would not be sufficient, encourage those who were unable to receive to make a Spiritual Communion.

  12. Augustinus says:

    “why can’t the priest distribute unconsecrated hosts dipped into the Consecrated Wine?”

    Surely this, in itself, would be sacriligious – even if seemingly well-intentioned. The priest would be dipping ordinary bread into the Precious Blood of Christ. To what effect? – a magical co-mingling to make it into the Body of Christ? No, never. He would then be passing off the inticted species as “the Body and Blood of Christ” when he distributes to the faithful. Clearly sacriligious and no priest would entartain the idea.

    Besides which, if there was sufficient of the Precious Blood in the chalice, Holy Communion could be distributed under that Species alone – the recipient would still be receiving the whole Christ – remember the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ are present “under either kind alone”.

    The misguided mentalitiy of the priest who has done this has surely been governed by the present modernist idea that everyone has to receive Holy Communion at every Mass. Fr Zs advice to inform the congregation what has happened is the right course. Let us pray that this poor priest has been badly taught in his formation but is capable of being better informed in future.

  13. Jay says:

    Read De Defectibus by Pope St. Pius V, that should give some idea of what should be done when in doubt.

  14. For those who don’t know how to cut and paste, the link David tried to post above is:

    http://www.ewtn.com/library/liturgy/zlitur82.htm

    It handles the question well, basically reinforcing what has already been commented upon here.

  15. TerryC says:

    Question here. If there are not enough hosts would it not be permissible for some of the faithful to receive Eucharist by only consuming the Precious Blood? I know the priest must consume under both species but is it not just as valid for the laity to only receive the Blood as it is for them to only receive the Body?

  16. Gordon says:

    This thing is quite bizzare. As one of the above posts mentions, it seems to be based on this rather unCatholic idea we must all go to communion or somehow we have not “participated” fully at mass. Just being at mas is enough. Recieving Holy Communion is a seperate thing. However, regards all the absolute condemnations, I was told that in the German concentration camps, priests did do this, but they tried to do it best they could,perhaps they recited the canon or something. The Nazis were not into letting priests say mass, they preferred killing them..4000 Polish priests, in fact died in those camps. This was simply their only way of having any kind of a mass. But this was extereme situations, not envisaged by standard rules. What has been going on at the place mentioned above does not fall anywhere near that. The local bishop really ought to do something to put a stop to it.

  17. Dominic says:

    A priest told me that if the Precious Blood runs out it is only necessary to fill the chalice with ordinary wine and it thereby becomes consecrated. He said this is because “the cup” is blessed not the wine, and that the wine is consecrated because it is contained within the blessed cup.

    My jaw nearly hit the floor when he told me this. I didn’t want to hear if he had replenished the chalice in such a way. I hope not.

    For John Fannon: “The communicant must not be permitted to intinct the host himself in the chalice, nor to receive the intincted host in the hand. As for the host to be used for the intinction, it should be made of valid matter, also consecrated; it is altogether forbidden to use non-consecrated bread or other matter.” Redemptionis Sacramentum, n. 104.

  18. John Fannon says:

    Fr Tim, Augustinus, on the occasion I witnessed, the Priest offered Communion as the Blood of Christ – not as the Body of Christ. So would that be described as Intinction?

    I recall that the Chalice seemed to be almost empty, and I surmise that the logic was that an unconsecrated host touching the inside of the Chalice would absorb a particle (however small) of the Precious Blood and thereby serve as a valid sacrament.

  19. Kradcliffe says:

    I have never seen this done. But… I didn’t know it was not allowed. I sort of remember reading, somewhere, that this was something that COULD be done. So, I am guessing that this priest isn’t alone in thinking this is OK?

  20. Gordon says:

    The various practices mentioned above are absolutely forbidden, & One is left to wonder exactly what do these priests believe in, that they could even contemplate it. Apart from the prison camp case I have mentioned,any other thing would not be valid sacraments. There was a shocking case in Glasgow, Scotland over 10 years ago where the priest doing mass in a school would not have enough hosts for all present. Now the church is feet away from this school. Rather than get hosts from the sacristry,he sent a teacher out to the store across the street who came back with popodums, so he used that for the mass!! We know this because it was headline news in Glasgow’s main evening newspaper.EVENING TIMES. The archdioces defended the priest.

  21. Transitional Deacon says:

    I have heard of not a few priests observing this practice of consecrating more hosts when they accidentally ran out. I get the impression that this practice must have been taught in the seminary during a certain unfortunate era in the modern period (perhaps the 1970s/80s ! ? ! ? ! ).

  22. Exaudi says:

    Is the “consecration” of hosts on their own and outside the context of Mass even valid? And what’s the reasoning behind that if it is?

  23. John Fannon says:

    Tim, Augustinus, Dominic

    As far I recall, the Chalice seemed to be almost empty. I suppose the logic was that by even touching the inside of the Chalice with the unconsecrated Host, a small particle of the Precious blood would adhere.

    The priest I might add, intincted the unconsecrated Hosts and gave them to the communicants by mouth, offering it as the Blood of Christ.

    The Priest was (and still is) very well respected in the Diocese, and it comes as a bit of a shock to find that his action was strictly illegal. Ah well it was 20 years ago.

  24. prof. basto says:

    To John Fannon,

    The possibility of using a foreign body, including an unconsacrated host, as means for intinction with the Precious Blood, is explicitly forbidden in the intruction Redemptionis Sacramentum. The unconsacrated host is explicitly mentioned as barred. Only the approved means of intinction can be used.

    We must remember that, as far as the Sacrifice of the Mass is concerned, there is no problem with the fact that not everybody will be able to receive holy Communion.

    Indeed, in times past, it wasn’t even tried. For instance, in Solemn Papal Masses only the Pope received Communion, except in extraordinary circumnstances (e.g. a Coronation, when the newly crowned Sovereign was als given Communion, ordinations, etc).

    Thus, if not everybody can receive, that’s o.k., or at least it is better than a sacrilege , such as:

    - consacrating one element without the other (the consacrated element is the Real Presence of Christ, but the Sacrifice of the Calvary is not completed, not made present, since it is made present by the fact that the Real Presence is contained under two separated species. This separation conveys the sense of victimhood. This according to the Encyclical Mediator Dei, item 70:

    “70. Likewise the victim is the same, namely, our divine Redeemer in His human nature with His true body and blood. The manner, however, in which Christ is offered is different. On the cross He completely offered Himself and all His sufferings to God, and the immolation of the victim was brought about by the bloody death, which He underwent of His free will. But on the altar, by reason of the glorified state of His human nature, “death shall have no more dominion over Him,”[62] and so the shedding of His blood is impossible; still, according to the plan of divine wisdom, the sacrifice of our Redeemer is shown forth in an admirable manner by external signs which are the symbols of His death. For by the “transubstantiation” of bread into the body of Christ and of wine into His blood, His body and blood are both really present: now the eucharistic species under which He is present symbolize the actual separation of His body and blood. Thus the commemorative representation of His death, which actually took place on Calvary, is repeated in every sacrifice of the altar, seeing that Jesus Christ is symbolically shown by separate symbols to be in a state of victimhood.

    - performing two valid sacrifices of the Mass one within the other, by re-consacrating both the Chalice and the Bread after a valid consacration. In that case, we have one Sacrifice of the Mass being celebrated in a totally irregular manner, without the proper rites, within another Mass.

    - creating a situation in which the priest will not consume the Sacred Species of the Sacrifice. The priest must always receive Holy Communion whenever he celebrates. That is why “De defectibus” states that, even if the priest has eaten the host, and then relized that it was not made of bread, he must perform a valid consacration of a host of bread, and then consume the Precious Body, and then goes on to say that, in that case, the fact that the priest (by having eaten the previous substance), is no longer fasting is not to preclude him from receiving the Host, “because the precept of completing the Sacrament is more important than the precept of fasting before Communion” . So, here we see that the Communion of the Priest is really theologically different from that of the faithful, since the reception of the species by the Priest who is acting in persona Christi is linked with the completion of the Sacrifice.

    The only cases when a priest can repeat the form of consacration are those allowed by “De Defectibus” and the GRIM, that is, when he realizes that he has validly consacrated one element but not the other for some reason (e.g. the bread wasn’t bread; there was only water in the chalice, etc). Then this defect must be solved by consacrating the species that is lacking, but not the one that was already properly consacrated. And no elevation is made to avoid scandal. But, in the case of the question above, valid consacrations of both bread and wine had already taken place. Thus, no other consacration can happen in that Mass.

  25. JML says:

    Back in the day (60′s) when the priest was running low, he would break the host in half and, if necessary, quarters so that all of us could receive. If there were more hosts in the tablernacle, naturally, he went there first.

    I was taught by the dear nuns that no matter how small the host, or part of a host, it is still God.

  26. dark_coven says:

    Another solution would be (if it’s on a Sunday) I think is for the communicant to let it go, and wait for the next Mass.

  27. Larry says:

    I did a quick read of the comments. Clearly the preists who responded have it correct, as does Fr. Z. No excuses! That being said and assuming that you have in fact spoken to the pries involved then it is advisable to contact the Bishop of the Diocese and inform him of all the details. This is a serious issue and needs to be resolved correctly. As an asside there is no problem in breaking the Host for the faithful. It sounds that if this has happened more than once either the priest is being neglectful or in incredibly cheap! Is this a very poor parish? If so I am certain that we can afford to provide enough hosts in the furture, let us know!

  28. Dante says:

    Consecrating a “Second Batch” of Hosts

    Fr. McNamara L.C.

    “it is not viable as this practice has been explicitly rejected in No. 104 of the instruction “Redemptionis Sacramentum”":

    “The communicant must not be permitted to intinct the host himself in the chalice, nor to receive the intincted host in the hand. As for the host to be used for the intinction, it should be made of valid matter, also consecrated; it is altogether forbidden to use non-consecrated bread or other matter.”

    Link: http://www.zenit.org/article-13043?l=english

    Follow up: http://www.zenit.org/article-13168?l=english

    Good Day to all.

    Ps. Thank You for all Father Z, especially your prayers. Valeas

  29. Father Bartoloma says:

    Fruits of the “Renewal”!

  30. Scott Smith says:

    The history of consecration by contact surely would be interesting, but it is far from the mind of the Church.

    Prof. Basto, posts an interesting thought. The whole idea of the consecration isn’t simply to confect the sacrament to be distributed. Holy Communion is the Consummation of the Sacrifice. It is not simply the making of holy bread by blessing. It seems that there is a profound theology at the heart of the matter that originates the canon excluding consecrating out-side of Mass, lest anyone imagine that we are sticklers for the rules as if the rules were arbitrary and insensitive to the perceived pastoral need.

  31. Sam says:

    What about in a concentration camp as mentioned above? Are there extraordinary circumstances in which one could do this?

  32. Tim Ferguson says:

    Sam, no. The law is quite clear, and is not merely ecclesiastical law, it is divine law, rooted in the nature of the Eucharist. The law specifically refers to the abhorrence of the practice “even in urgent and extreme necessity.”

  33. Dante says:

    CORRECTION UPDATE on Consecrating a “Second Batch” of Hosts

    An apology to all readers, it seems I have pasted an erroneus text. Sorry for the inconvenience.

    From Fr. Edward McNamara L.C., professor of liturgy at the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical University:

    “I think the best solution is to simply apologize for what happened. Sometimes we priests have recourse to extravagant “solutions” when all that is needed is to recognize our fallibility and liability to make mistakes.

    This is especially so in situations, such as that described, when the consequences of not being able to receive Communion in this circumstance does not imply a major spiritual damage to the faithful and where an alternative solution may be found at some other moment of the day.”

    Links: http://www.zenit.org/article-13043?l=english

    Follow up: http://www.zenit.org/article-13168?l=english

    Good day to all.

    Ps. Thank you for all Father Z, especially your prayers.

    Valeas.

  34. Christopher says:

    Just as a note:
    Some have asked if it is Valid.
    The answer seems to be a simple, “yes.” The Law says that one “may not,” the law does not say “one many not attempt to.” To attempt to consecrate invalid material would be a seperate crime, entirely, but not this one.

    A cannonist I know has noted such a thing, as I have written, here.

    One could, but never should.

    NEFAS EST

    May God bless you.
    Holy Mary protect you.
    Blessed Ascension.
    - Christopher

  35. prof. basto says:

    Sam,

    It seems that the canon saying “It is absolutely wrong, even in urgent and extreme necessity…”, covers concentration camps, death camps, etc.

    ***

    There are theological reasons behind this (the necessity of joint consacration of both species) and within the context of Mass. Although both species contain the Blood, Body, Soul and Divinity of the Saviour, and are the same Eucharist, yet Christ willed that his Real Eucharistic presence should exist under two kinds, two species (one being the Glorious Body – the sacred Host consacrated with the words This is My Body; and the other being the Precious Blood – the Chalice of Salvation consacrated with the words this This is My Blood). So, just as it is true that both kinds contain the whole Christ, it is also true that one is the Body of the Redeemer and the other is His Blood. And the state of separation – The Bread in the Paten, the Blood in the Chalice, according to Mediator Dei (n. 70), convey the sense of the shedding of Christ’s blood, of His death, and thus make present the Sacrifice of the Calvary.

    Now, if the Real Presence is confected only under one species, not only the structure of double consacration willed by the Lord during the Last Supper is not fullfilled, but the Sacrifice is not complete, because, as Mediator Dei n. 70 explains, at Mass Christ is shown to be at a state of victimhood precisely because of the separate Eucharistic species. Thus the fundamental importance of the double consacration.

  36. prof. basto says:

    Yes Christopher, the Eucharist is valid because there is transubstantiation of the one species consacrated, there is real presence. Thus there is validity, since the element consacrated truly becomes Christ.

    But the propitiatory Sacrifice of the Calvary is not accomplished at that Mass – and accomplishing the Sacrifice is THE point of the Mass, for the benefit of the living and the dead, and for the glory of God (…ad laudem et gloriam nominis Sui, ad utilitate quoque nostra totiusque Ecclesiae Suae sanctae) – and the Sacrifice is not completed precisely because, for the purpose of the propitiatory Sacrifice, both the Species are needed.

    That is reflected not only in Mediator Dei, but also in several rules of De Defectibus. Take a look, for instance, at item 33 of De Defectibus, that covers the case of the celebrating Priest dying mid-Mass. I mean, nothing can be more serious than that. Even still, if one of the species has been consacrated, the Church insists that the other be consacrated too, by another priest, that is to take the deceased’s place and celebrate the rest of the Liturgy. A most strange case of concelebration in the one priesthood of Christ. Take a look at the norm:

    33. If before the Consecration the priest becomes seriously ill, or faints, or dies , the Mass is discontinued. If this happens after the consecration of the Body only and before the consecration of the Blood, or after both have been consecrated, the Mass is to be completed by another priest from the place where the first priest stopped, and in case of necessity even by a priest who is not fasting. If the first priest has not died but has become ill and is still able to receive Communion, and there is no other consecrated host at hand, the priest who is completing the Mass should divide the host, give one part to the sick priest and consume the other part himself. If the priest has died after half-saying the formula for the consecration of the Body, then there is no Consecration and no need for another priest to complete the Mass. If, on the other hand, the priest has died after half- saying the formula for the consecration of the Blood, then another priest is to complete the Mass, repeating the whole formula over the same chalice from the words Simili modo, postquam cenatum est; or he may say the whole formula over another chalice which has been prepared, and consume the first priest’s host and the Blood consecrated by himself, and then the chalice which was left half-consecrated.

  37. Sam says:

    Dear prof. basto,

    Sorry, I was unclear. I was assuming a double consecration and was asking a slightly different question concerning the phrase “or even to consecrate both outside the eucharistic celebration.”

    What does it mean to consecrate “outside the eucharistic celebration”? To put it another way, if one is in a concentration camp and celebrates mass (w/double consecration) but only with the words of institution, is this not by definition “the eucharistic celebration” (see can. 899)? In this canon there is no discussion of using the correct liturgical text (some commentaries assert a rejection of “minimalistic practices”). This, I assume, is for obvious reasons: some schismatics have a valid eucharistic celebration and do not have an approved liturgical text. So again what does it mean to consecrate outside the eucharistic celebration? It is almost as if the CIC is assuming, despite the commentaries on it, that the second consecration is outside the eucharistic celebration precisely because it is a second eucharistic celebration.

    You write, “Now, if the Real Presence is confected only under one species, not only the structure of double consacration willed by the Lord during the Last Supper is not fullfilled, but the Sacrifice is not complete, because, as Mediator Dei n. 70 explains, at Mass Christ is shown to be at a state of victimhood precisely because of the separate Eucharistic species. Thus the fundamental importance of the double consacration.”

    Concerning the question of double consecration. Pius does not seem to argue that the sacrifice is not complete as you allege. Perhaps, by complete you intend something more along the line of ‘integral.’

    It is true that theologians have asserted that the consecration is the act of sacrifice. Historically,there has been two main schools of thought concerning whether the double consecration is necessary for the sacrifice. After all this was a practical problem in the early church during times of persecution(Cyprian, Ep. 63, n. 17). More recently it is discussed by Alphonsus and later Schouppe. Pius does not seem to have settled the debate.

  38. It is my opinion that a such a consecration is INVALID and not just ILLICT. “NEFAS” is used precisely because it renders the sacrament null and void and that in itself is sacrilege. The previous consecration of the bread and wine done at Mass by the priest is VALID but the second consecration of ONLY bread, IMHO, is invalid for these reasons. The INTENTION is to only consecrate one element as opposed to a priest who in IGNORANCE believes he has BOTH valid bread AND wine and only later discovers a defective element. In this case, the priest consecrated a certain amount of hosts WITH a certain amount of wine into the Precious Body & Blood. At Communion time, he realizes that he ran out of consecrated Hosts and there are none in the Tabernacle. In such a case, he CANNOT as well as SHOULD NOT consecrate extra hosts. The integrity of SACRAMENT depends on the integrity of the SACRIFICE. The Sacrifice requires a separate consecration of bread and a separation consecration of wine, hence the separation of Body from Blood, which is death.

    Once the consecration of the bread and the consecration of the wine takes place, anything not on the corporal (or at least on the altar in full view of the celebrant) is dubiously consecrated. ‘THIS’ (as in “this is my body”) refers to what is before the priest whereas ‘THAT’ refers to something over THERE.

    This scenario is grave and serious since the VALIDITY of those other hosts are in question. While the priest has the POWER to confect the Holy Eucharist, he can validly do so only under the proper conditions. When the Angelic Doctor speaks of the case where the priest at the Offertory unknowingly pours water into the chalice instead of wine and then says the consecration of the bread and proceeds to say the consecration over the cup (believing it to be wine) and then realizes there is only water in the chalice, he only has to refill the cup with wine and say the consecration of the wine AND does NOT have to repeat the consecration of the bread. Why? Because the INTENTION was to complete the SACRIFICE by INTENDING to consecrate BOTH bread and wine into the Precious Body and Blood of Christ. In the above mentioned case, there is no case of ignorance since real bread and real wine were truly consecrated. The ‘second’ consecration of bread (without any corresponding consecration of wine) renders the sacrifice null and void and without a sacrifice, there is no sacrament.

    The crux of the issue is WHAT did the priest KNOW and what did he INTEND? In the case of human error and ignorance, the church has answered that only the defective element has to be reconsecrated if the mistake is noticed before the elements are consumed. HOWEVER, when it is not a case of error or ignorance, rather a prudential judgment, such as the case where the priest did not consecrate enough hosts, then a single consecration over ‘more’ hosts without a corresponding consecration of ‘more’ wine will not result in a valid sacrifice and thus no valid sacrament (in the second instance, i.e.)

    See #856 of Bishop Peter Elliott “Ceremonies of the Modern Roman Rite” and #172 of Redemptionis Sacramentum

  39. Matt Q says:

    Yes, Father Z, as said above by the others, it is absolutely WRONG and forbidden to consecrate hosts other than via consecrata during Mass, and that’s only once per Mass. There really is no other way. For that priest to do what the letter alleges he is doing, the priest is incurring some rather serious spiritual as well as Canonical demerits.

    If the celebrant ran out of hosts during Mass, then he’s out. I feel badly for the Faithful who don’t get to receive but there is no true loss involved because it was due to merely running out of hosts. This is the parish’s fault for not foreseeing the need and consecrating what was needed ahead of time at the present or previous Mass!

    This brings up another issue. The incorrect set-up of the “worship environment” resulting from the false interpretation of V2 is also a causating factor in this terrible circumstance. In the first place, it’s the priest’(s)’ fault for not being prepared.

  40. London Calling says:

    I wonder if the priest in Fr Z’s original posting was an Anglican convert. Their prayer book (you can read it online) says:

    If either or both of the consecrated elements are likely to prove insufficient, the president returns to the holy table and adds more, saying these words

    “Father, having given thanks over the bread and the cup according to the institution of your Son Jesus Christ, who said, ‘Take, eat; this is my body’ [and/or 'Drink this; this is my blood'], we pray that by the power of your Holy Spirit this bread/wine also may be to us his body/blood, to be received in remembrance of him.

    No question about this being wrong in a Catholic Mass though.

  41. Tom says:

    And THIS is the company that so many think that the FSSPX ought to be only too glad to hsare?

    Men who do ‘nefarious’ things like this just don’t get it. They’ve probably never been told what it is. Whenever it has come up, they all club together and demonstrate to each other how nasty and medieval it is. Vast tracts of territory and vast multitudes of souls, even Priests and Bishops simply wouldn’t recognise it if they saw it and, if they did see it, wouldn’t like it anyway.

    And THIS is the company that so many think that the FSSPX ought to be only too glad to be in!

  42. Tim Ferguson says:

    Yes Tom, the Church is full of sinners. It’s probably best that those without sin stay far away from it.

  43. Terry asked:

    If there are not enough hosts would it not be permissible for some of the faithful to receive Eucharist by only consuming the Precious Blood? I know the priest must consume under both species but is it not just as valid for the laity to only receive the Blood as it is for them to only receive the Body?

    I would think it would be okay. It is certainly okay for an individual communicant to receive only the Blood and not the Body, if there is some necessity for it — for example, if they have an extremely strong allergy to wheat. (Canon 925.) In practice, this is not required to be rare; in other words, if someone has a permanent wheat allergy, they may receive the Blood alone every time they attend Mass. (Although they should probably make sure the priest knows this in advance!)

    Suppose, then, that after the priest receives both species himself, and perhaps after several congregants have already received the host, it is found that there are no hosts left. May the priest announce this, and invite those who still wish to receive communion to receive the Blood alone? I don’t know if there is any ruling on this specific point, but it seems to me that a reasonable interpretation of canon 925 would permit it.

  44. Michael R. says:

    I suppose this is a result of the erroneous belief that the Mass is essentially a meal, and nobody should have to leave without eating.

  45. All of this is much ado about nothing because at the New Order Mock Mass bread remains bread from start to finish. This was the plan from the very beginning.

    It has been forecast for centuries and it is just punishment for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference of Roman Catholics of my generation and my parents generation.

    These two generations which of course includes myself will have a harder time gaining entrance to heaven than any previous generation.

    But it is not much ado about nothing. It is something after all. It is a mockery of the holy sacrifice of the mass and is an institutionalised means of bringing judgement on oneself.

    In this upside down church missing mass is not a sin. Instead it is a sin to participate.

  46. RBrown says:

    All of this is much ado about nothing because at the New Order Mock Mass bread remains bread from start to finish. This was the plan from the very beginning.

    It has been forecast for centuries and it is just punishment for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference of Roman Catholics of my generation and my parents generation.

    These two generations which of course includes myself will have a harder time gaining entrance to heaven than any previous generation.

    But it is not much ado about nothing. It is something after all. It is a mockery of the holy sacrifice of the mass and is an institutionalised means of bringing judgement on oneself.

    In this upside down church missing mass is not a sin. Instead it is a sin to participate.
    Comment by paddythepapist

    I have to congratulate you for not letting a little knowledge get in the way of your opinion.

  47. RBrown says:

    I suppose this is a result of the erroneous belief that the Mass is essentially a meal, and nobody should have to leave without eating.
    Comment by Michael R.

    Winner winner chicken dinner.

  48. RBrown says:

    Father Trigilio,

    Although I agree that a second consecration of hosts shouldn’t be done, I have to disagree with your opinion about validity.

    1. If we adhere to your principle, a second consecration of the chalice would make the second consecration of hosts valid.

    2. What about a priest who intends a second double consecration, but changes his mind after the second consecration of the hosts? Are those hosts validly confected?

    3. I cannot see how minimal intention would not be present during any second consecration of the species.

    4. I once taught the course De Sacramentis in genere Baptismo et Confirmatione. If I were ever to do it again, I would spend much more time on the nature of Minimual Intention as well as essential Sacramental form.

  49. About the “concentration camp” scenario…

    If I attempted to offer the Mass, without a Missal, I would probably mess up the orations and the preface, and the readings, but would do pretty fine on the rest of the prayers, and I would get the Eucharistic Prayer close to right. I’m a priest five years, so I’m thinking some years from now, I’d better able to do the Mass from memory.

    In any case, I think such a Mass would certainly be valid, and would not come under the term “nefas” because the priest would be attempting, as best he could, to offer the complete Mass. Whether, in such circumstances, he should attempt such a Mass, or refrain, I will leave for others to determine.

  50. Christopher Milton says:

    Slightly Relatedly: How does one pronounce “nefas est”? Is it “nee-fahs ehst” or “neh-fahs ehst”?

  51. Michael C. says:

    What did Maximilian Kolbe do? I presume we know, since we have the details of his martyrdom.

  52. While in prisons and concentration camps Ven. Walter Cizek, S.J. always consecrated both species. I would guess that St Maximilian Kolbe and others did the same. The point is not to provide communion but to offer Mass, and the sacrifice is not offered by simply consecrating one species. Both must be consecrated and consumed by the priest to effect the sacrifice. The priest is the only one who MUST receive communion.

    The issue related in the quaery comes because of the abysmal Eucharistic and Sacramental Theology that is taught in seminaries. Having attended one in the Washington, DC area for members of religious orders that was hardly Catholic I speak from experience. The priest mentioned needs prayers and charitable instruction, not reprimand and being reported to the bishop. It is his pastor’s obligation to instruct him in the proper practice, perhaps using the citations presented in the above comments. The priest is most likely not even aware that he is doing something wrong. Unless and until he is made aware and then refuses to change his actions he is guilty of neither crime nor mortal sin.

    If his pastor will not address the issue with him perhaps there is another local priest who will. (If needed, I am willing to do so. The person who asked the question can contact me at jscottbaileycssr@aol.com) That should be the first course of action and should happen as soon as possible. Only if that does not end the practice should the bishop be informed.

    While it is essential that the priest be instructed, the easiest way to deal with the situation is for the sacristan to make sure there are enough hosts prepared to be consecrated. There really is no reason for this to happen in the first place unless large numbers of people are arriving after the offertory, in which case they should probably not be receiving communion anyway.

  53. Habemus Papam says:

    I remember in the ’70s a priest sermonising on the Renewal, literally shouting at the congregation “If you do not recieve Communion its a waste of time coming to Mass!”

  54. Sam says:

    Fr. Scott Bailey, C.Ss.R.

    Still no one has addressed my question concerning the concentration camp and what it would mean to consecrate “outside the eucharistic celebration”. As I stated before I am assuming a double concentration.

    Fr. you assert (as others have here) that “the sacrifice is not offered by simply consecrating one species.” You assert this, as you are free to, but realize in so doing that (unless there is a recent declaration) one is equally free to deny your position. This is not a decided issue and there is no definitive statement on the matter. This was a matter commonly discussed in pre-conciliar theological texts and was almost always discussed in terms of probable opinions.

    You also assert “Both must be consecrated and consumed by the priest to effect the sacrifice.” Again this was a disputed point in theological texts and was not even the more probable opinion.

    There is a difference between a dogma and the theological justification of a dogma.

  55. D.S. says:

    Laudetur JS CHS – qui surrexit ascenditque, alleluia!

    Tim Ferguson:
    That´s not fair – was not the point. The point was: accusing a society for not wanting to be in too close company to such “nefatical” things that are very common in modern church-live and calling them schismatics confuses perhaps cause and effect or the guilty and the unguilty/suffering/right-doing. Getting the point?

    Yes, Tom.

    D.S.

  56. prof. basto says:

    Sam,

    Both before and after the Council, it has always been held nefarious to consacrate one kind without the other. It is so unspeakeble, that the question of wether or not the Sacrifice is accomplished with only the consacration of one element is a byzantine, academic question, of no practical significance. Whenever one species is consacrated, the other must be too.

    The sacred canons, the Vatican instructions, and the chapter “De Defectibus” all point in the same direction. Never is only one species to be left consacrated alone without the other.

    That being said, it seems to me, that we must distinguish between the Real Presence and the propitiatory Sacrifice. The Real Presence is established whenever one element is consacrated. Suppose the Priest has just consacrated the Sacred Host, and then, when saying “simili modo”, he has a collapse and dies. The host is already the Body of Christ, no doubt. But the propitiatory Sacrifice of the Calvary is not yet made present, not until another priest replaces the dead celebrant and proceeds with the consacration of the Chalice as directed by De Defectibus.

    That is the essentiality of the double consacration structure willed by the Lord at the Last Supper. The double consacration makes present the Sacrifice, by conveying Christ’s state of victimhood by means of the existance of the separated Eucharistic species. That’s my reading of Mediator Dei, n. 70.

    While the language of Mediator Dei, n. 70 is not that of a solemn definition of that question, it is still a pronouncement of the Magisterium, teaching us that “… the eucharistic species under which He is present symbolize the actual separation of His body and blood. Thus the commemorative representation of His death, which actually took place on Calvary, is repeated in every sacrifice of the altar, seeing that Jesus Christ is symbolically shown by separate symbols to be in a state of victimhood”.

    The Bread of Angels is never meant to be offered apart from the Chalice of Salvation and vice versa. The oblation of Melchisedech was an offering of both bread and wine, and Our Lord, the Supreme Priest after the order of Melchisedech, offered to God the Father His Body and Blood in sacrifice also under the appearence of both bread and wine at the Last Supper, in anticipation of his salvific death at the calvary.

    Thus it seems that, based on Mediator Dei n. 70, the consacration of one species – a nefarious act – while transforming that species in the Real Presence of Christ, does not complete what is necessary for the propitiatory Sacrifice of the Calvary to be made present. Only the observance of the double consacration, with the confection of the Eucharist under both appearences of bread and wine, make present at Mass the Sacrifice of our Redeemer. Thus, the Mass is of no propitatory value unless both bread and wine be consacrated.

    We cannot equate the pronouncement of Mediator Dei with nothing. On the contrary, it is a very important pronouncement, and seems to indicate that, for the Sacrifice, the double consacration is not only mandatory but necessary , for without it, the state of victimhood is not made present.

  57. R Brown

    It is not a matter of opinion but a matter of faith

  58. Jeff says:

    It seems everyone is jumping to conclusions about the context of this question. There is not the necessary information to provide a proper answer, in my opinion. The question does not mention whether the incident in question took place outside of Mass, or if the spieces were consecrated one without the other. If this is the case then what everyone is suggesting is corrent, it is forbidden.

    However, the way I read the question was that a priest had celebrated Mass and run out of the Body of Chirst, since the chapel has no tabernacle, the reserve Sacrament was not avalible. Instead having some people not receive Communion, he sent a served back to the sacristy, got some unconsecrated hosts, and consecrated them. Now is that forbidden? It is in the context of Mass and both species have already been consecrated, he is consecrating some more. I know the for example if a priest spills the chalice at Mass, he is the reverently clean it up and then reconsecrate more wine into the Blood of Christ. Is this situation much different?

    Like I said, I read the situation different than other people.

  59. Jeff, I read the question in exactly the same way as you did. I would also be willing to say that so did most if not all the other readers.

    There is absolutely no reason for the priest to consecrate more hosts. It is not now, nor was it ever necessary for the faithful to communicate for the Mass to be valid. Only the one who consecrates must receive communion. Why the preist would not break the hosts into smaller particles, we do not know, but that would have been a proper response. A better response, given that it was not the first time, would have been to have extra hosts on the credence table and, if needed, bring them to the altar at the offertory.

    What the priest did is forbidden by canon law. Why? Because the Sacrifice had been completed with the communion of the priest. Thus to consecrate as he did is a single consecration not a dual consecration. Even if he were to consecrate wine as well it would be forbidden. One Mass, one sacrifice. The example you give, of a priest spilling the Precious Blood before he communicates is a different issue. To effect the sacrifice the priest must both consecrate and communicate both species. If he spills the Precious Blood and does not consecrate more wine so that he may communicate there is no sacrifice. (Note that in the case of concelebration, all concelebrants must communicate under both species.) However, if he runs out of consecrated hosts to distribute communion to the faithful, the sacrifice is not in any way affected. There is no law, nor has there ever been one that said the faithful had to be given the opportunity to receive communion at every Mass. Nor is Mass necessary for the faithful to communicate. They may do so outside of Mass for any good reason.

    So, I don’t think you read the situation any differently than other people. A priest may never consecrate outside of the Holy Sacrifice. For the Sacrifice to be offered both bread and wine must be separately consecrated and received by the consecrator.

    Also, the question is not whether or not he confected the sacrament. He did confect the sacrament in the second consecration of hosts. They became the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ. But, he did it in a way that has always been forbidden and, as Canon Law suggests, unthinkable.

  60. Sam says:

    Prof. basto,

    As I have pointed out my main question is concerns the meaning of the phrase of “or even to consecrate both outside the Eucharistic celebration.” CIC 927. Again my reading is that “to consecrate” is the Eucharistic celebration and “outside” really must mean that when the priest consecrated again it is a second Eucharistic celebration.

    Others seem more interested in the phrase “to consecrate one element without the other,” CIC 927. I have only discussed this since an assertion was made in an earlier post that if a single consecration occurs then there is no sacrifice. This is unrelated to my main question.

    At any rate you assert, “Both before and after the Council, it has always been held nefarious to consacrate one kind without the other. It is so unspeakeble, that the question of wether or not the Sacrifice is accomplished with only the consacration of one element is a byzantine, academic question, of no practical significance.”

    I am not, nor was not, contesting that it is “nefarious” to do this.

    It is clearly not “unspeakable” which is why this question has been discussed since at least the 3rd century even by doctors of the church.

    Why is this a “byzantine question of no practical significance”? Since single consecrations have happened in the past and will happen again in the future. One might want to know the follwoing practical questions. Did the sacrifice occur? There is also the problem of the application of general fruit, the special fruit, the personal fruit, and the ministerial fruit. If the Mass did not occur then what of the these fruits?

    I have not said that MD is not an important document nor did I say it should be treated lightly.

    I have asserted that MD 70 does not address the issue you seem to think that it does. MD 70 does not say that the sacrifice does not take place with a single consecration. Notice that the opinion of the single consecration (by this phrase I mean that the single consecration is sufficient for the sacrifice to have occurred) is not excluded. It would have been very easy for Pius to do so simply by adding only a few words. Notice that the word “necessary”(from your post) is not there. You are reading into the text. Even if it said “necessary” what would this even mean? I seriously doubt that the Pius would have used that word given how it is commonly used in theology. For the term “necessary” would have not resolved the debate, it probably would have only intensified it. The single consecration theory was discussed in virtually every theological text written prior to the council and was well known. This probably explains why he did not reject it.

    Again you are free to hold your opinion but others are free to hold the contrary unless someone can find a definitive statement on the matter or if not definitive at least a text that actually has an exclusion. I am personally not aware of any such text but it may exist post Pius.

  61. Sam says:

    Jeff,

    Perhaps I have misunderstood you but if I may comment on your following:
    “It seems everyone is jumping to conclusions about the context of this question. There is not the necessary information to provide a proper answer, in my opinion. The question does not mention whether the incident in question took place outside of Mass, or if the spieces were consecrated one without the other. If this is the case then what everyone is suggesting is corrent, it is forbidden.”

    The context question is important. Clearly, you are correct it is forbidden. Nevertheless it occurs. Cyprian recounts how a number of priests (if I recall correctly) fled due to fear of persecution after a single consecration. There was no one left to finish the mass. If one reads canon 927 as a statement of invalidity of the sacrifice then these masses are invalid. Or is the canon simply forbididing priest from doing this but not making a statement about the validity of the sacrifice.

    The same holds true for the double consecration (actually my question). The way this is frequently read by both canonists and as you can see by some on this blog it is an argument essentially against liturgical minimalism. To be sure liturgical minimalism is to be condemned but is a mass in a concentration camp really liturical minimalism or certainly liturgical maximalism. This is the problem of the term “outside” in the canon. If one reads the canon as an attack on litgical minimalism then priests in camps should not say a mass with lets say only the words of institution and only with what one can remember or have time for before the guards return (Fr. Fox seems to be the most sensible on this topic). Under this understanding one should not do it.

    My contention (offered with some hestitation) is that this type of mass would not be invalid because the definition of the the eucharistic celebration that the CIC itself (see 899) gives does not mention anything about the necessity of following an approved liturgical text in part (institution excepted) or in its entirety. “outside” the echaristic celebration should be understood as essentially saying a second mass at the same time.

  62. Shane says:

    This brings to mind the question about large Masses such as papal Masses. Fr. Trigillio mentioned that only those things on the corporal are consecrated. However, at papal Masses and other large Masses I have been to, it was simply not possible for all of the hosts to be on the altar at once. As such, I have seen everything from side tables to ciboriums being held in the hands of the priests who are to give Communion. What is the situation here?

  63. Clara says:

    Just as a note — I once assisted at a Mass in which they ran short for Communion. I’m not sure exactly what happened. Anyway, they broke the hosts into small pieces and distributed those, but when even that wasn’t enough, Father told the people who didn’t get to receive that if they wished to do so, they could come back to the next Mass that was starting shortly afterwards. He told them that they didn’t have to stay for the entire Mass; they could just come back for the canon (he estimated when that would begin) and he excused them from their Eucharistic fast so that they could relax and enjoy the coffee hour downstairs in the meantime. Just another possible solution, for people who were really looking forward to receiving at Mass.

  64. Sam,

    Perhaps this will answer your question. I suspect that you misunderstand what Canon 927 means by “Eucharistic Celebration.”

    Two issues must be separated: What constitutes a valid sacrifice or Eucharistic Celebration and what constitutes a true and valid confection of the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist. Though intimately related, they are two distinct things.

    As to the latter, what it requires valid matter, valid form, and proper intention. The essential valid form is “This is my Body” and “This is the Chalice of my Blood. . .” You can look this up in any theology manual or in Aquinas.

    As to the former, what it requires is that valid matter for both species be offered, consecrated, and consumed by the priest. Again see the same sources. To offer a valid sacrifice or Mass, the minimum prayers are the Offertory, Consecration, and Communion. Everything else may be left out. So, a priest in a consentration camp, to offer a valid Mass, must offer the bread and wine, consecrate it using the essential form, and consume both. This would take a matter of a very few minutes. Though stripped down to the absolute minimum, this a valid Eucharistic Celebration and fulfills Canon 917. This is why every Roman Rite priest must memorize the Offertory prayers, namely “Sucipe Sancte Pater” & “Offerimus tibi Domine” (EF) or both prayers “Blessed are you, Lord God” (OF) and “Qui Pridie” & “Simili Modo” or at least “Hoc est” and “Hic est” (both OF and EF). No words are required for Communion. Any priest who celebrates Mass regularly has these prayers memorized. The example you give as recounted by Cyprian is of an invalid Mass but a valid and true confection of the Eucharistic species.

    To consecrate outside the bare minimum required for the Sacrifice is not a Mass, though it is a valid confection of the Sacrament of the Eucharist. However, given that the Communion is so intimately tied to the Sacrifice it is unthinkable (not in the exact literal sense) to consecrate apart from at least the very minimal elements of the Eucharistic Celebration.

  65. Jeff says:

    Fr. Scott

    Thanks for your reply, it was truly appreciated. I did some digging, for when I first posted I didn’t have access to all my resources. Somewhere in the back of my mind I knew I had read of circumstances in which, after the sacrifice had been completed, it was permissible to consecrate other species.

    The situation described at the beginning of the entry is indeed completely prohibited, as both codes of Canon Law and numerous commentaries point out.

    Digging out O’Connell’s Celebration of the Mass, I turned to the section on defects and found two circumstances where it is permissible to consecrate other species after the sacrifice.

    1.
    “If a consecrated Host should disappear by any accident, such as the wind or because It was taken up by some animal, and cannot be found, another host is to be consecrated, beginning from Qui pridie quam pateretur, having been previously offered up, as explained above” (Def. III, 7).

    Given most churches today this is not likely to be an issue, although it may when Mass is celebrated outdoors.

    2.
    “If, after an accident, enough of the Precious Blood remains in the chalice to enable the celebrant really to drink It at the consumption, he completes the Mass with that small quantity. If, however, none of not sufficient to make “a drink” remain, the celebrant must take fresh wine and water, offer it, at least mentally, and consecrate it, beginning at Simili modo. He may omit the prayer Deus, qui humanae, etc., and all ceremonies (genuflections and the Elevation), as explained in IV, par. 16 sqq., supra.”

    There is also a real possibility of this happening.

  66. Jeff,

    Just to clarify, the options you mention are during or part of, not after the sacrifice. The sacrifice begins with the offertory, continues with the consecration, and is completed with the priest’s communion. That is why the priest must offer and consecrate another host or more wine… so he can complete the sacrifice by consuming what was offered and consecrated.

  67. Sam says:

    Fr. Scott Bailey, C.Ss.R.,

    I have not misunderstood what is meant by “eucharistic celebration” in CIC 927. The point that I have repeatly made is that CIC 899 tells us precisely what is meant by Eucharistic celebration in canon law: “Eucharistica celebratio actio est ipsius Christi et Ecclesiae, in qua Christus Dominus, ministerio sacerdotis, semetipsum, sub speciebus panis et vini substantialiter praesentem, Deo Patri offert atque fidelibus in sua oblatione sociatis se praebet ut cibum spiritualem.” CIC 899. This definition provided by CIC is the basis of my argument concerning the meaning of CIC 927. I notice that you do not actually offer a definition of “eucharistic celebration.”

    You write, “Two issues must be separated: What constitutes a valid sacrifice or Eucharistic Celebration and what constitutes a true and valid confection of the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist. Though intimately related, they are two distinct things.”

    I have never once denied that the sacrifice and the sacrament are two distinct things.

    You write, “To offer a valid sacrifice or Mass, the minimum prayers are the Offertory, Consecration, and Communion.” You have correctly identified the three chief parts of the Mass. However, only the consecration is considered by most theologians, and you may check approved theologicals texts on the matter, the physical essense of the mass. While Cano and Valencia argued that communion was of the essense of the Mass, this opinion never gained currency. It is also probably the case that the sacrifice is not in the offertory for the very simple reason that Christ is not present yet on the altar. Recalling of course that many theologians argue that the words of consecration themselves are a type of offetory.

    You write, “The example you give as recounted by Cyprian is of an invalid Mass but a valid and true confection of the Eucharistic species.”

    Again this is only true if one adheres to the double consecration theory. The point I have now made repeatly is that almost all approved theological texts list the double consecration theory as “more probable” St. Alphonsus lists it as “communior et probabilior.” This is hardly a definitive teaching. Again show me a single magisterial statement that condemns the single consecration theory.

    You write, “To consecrate outside the bare minimum required for the Sacrifice is not a Mass,” No one denies this. The question is: Precisely what is the minimum required? My answer is essentialy the words of institution are the minimum required since the essence of the mass is the consecration.

    Again I am not arguing that this should be done, I am simply arguing that if it is, the sacrifice is effected.

  68. Gordon says:

    Sam,
    Regards the concentration camp situation, I was remiss in not saying the priests would use both bread & some wine, even if it was the smallest drop usable. The main point was that it was a situation outside a normal mass setting. I was hoping someone with more info about the camps would be able to help us. There is still a big difference between that wartime persecution,(which was as bad as the days of Roman emperors for many) & priests making ad hoc consecrations merely to allow folks to get to communion at a standard mass. It has to be said that those priests in the camps would never dream of doing that in a normal situation. They simply had no alternative & also had to be very secretive so the guards didnt find out.

  69. RBrown says:

    It is not a matter of opinion but a matter of faith
    Comment by paddy the papist

    What matter of faith?

  70. Sam, there is no magesterial statement either for your position or my position. Most theological positions do not have magesterial statements. The magesterium only makes definitive statements when it is deemed necessary. I think the mind of the Church is rather clear as is expressed in De Defectibus, which is the closest to a magesterial statement one will find on the matter. The provisions found there suppose a given theology. That is the theology I have expressed.

    In your response to me you write: Precisely what is the minimum required? I think De Defectibus answers this with great clarity: Offertory, Consecration, and Communion of both the Body and Blood of Christ, the so called “double consecration theory.” Thus for me your arguement is contrary to a document that is part of the Roman Missal, though not a magesterial statement per se.

    I do follow what you are saying and from what you wrote it seems you follow what I am saying. So, perhaps we must agree to disagree until there is some definitive pronouncement. I’m just happy for the chance to discourse about such matters. It isn’t part of the daily life of a parish priest. Thank you for the opportunity. It’s good for me to exercise my brain. And if you have more points, let’s keep going, though I don’t want to co-opt the com boxes.

  71. Dan O says:

    I hope this is not just anecdote and I know it is not snark, so here goes. I was taught as a kid that if a renegade or crazy priest went into a bakery and said the words of consecration, “This is my body, etc.” with the intent to consecrate, that the bread would become the true body of Christ and the real presence would be there. We always wondered whether the bishop or other priests would have to come and dispose of the bread. If this is true, I would think that the second consecration would similarly result in the true presence since there is proper form, matter and intent. Thus the people in the Church received the truly consecrated body of Christ. Of course, from the postings above this is absolutely the wrong thing to do.

  72. Susan says:

    Simple, just get people to place unconsecrated bread into a communion plate at the back of the church as they go in, then there are enough surely!! We did this at school 50 years ago.

    It still amazes me that only one sacred element is distributed to the laity in so many parishes. If both elements are equal, then why not the wine?

    In any case no one should go away from a church without Communion. You never go to someone’s house hungry, and be told to make a spiritual meal as the food has run out. Bodily food – cook some more. Spiritual food – consecrate both bread and wine again – but with dignity, not some process-driven ritual.