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.