Coffee and donuts at St. Joan’s in Minneapolis

UPDATE 19 Nov 15:10 GMT

The Recovering Dissident Catholic has something to add:

People ask me, often, what brought me around. This is it. Right here. It is THE LORD. Communion is not just some communal parish meal like having coffee and cookies before or after Mass. Holy Communion is receiving THE LORD. You are not a Protestant! Quit believing like one!

 

________________________

I have on more than one occasion quipped that while many parishes have coffee and donuts on Sundays after Mass, St. Joan of Arc in my home town of Minneapolis was the only place I had ever seen coffee and donuts during Mass.

Now comes this from Fr. Jim DeBruycker, the pastor, writing to his flock in the Sunday bulletin of 16 Nov 2008.

Please read this while giving Father the benefit of the doubt, imagining what he has to contend with there, after all the years of looniness:

1. Using the Egan room as a hospitality room for coffee and cookies has become quite successful, too much so I fear. A number of people are bringing coffee and cookies to mass, which is not polite and is often messy, it makes it hard to sing and makes a mockery of the communion fast. Please no refreshments during the liturgy.

2. Intinction, dipping the host, is not part of the Latin rite. But what is bothering the communion distributors even more are people dipping their fingers in as well. I am ordering new chalices with wider brims. Please be careful and, when at all possible, drink from the cup.

3. Finally, the communion ministers who stand in front of the gym exit to the school building are complaining that they have to wrestle with parishioners leaving mass early. Communicants are being jostled out of line as early leavers try to reach the school doors. If you are leaving early, please leave by the parking lot doors. Thanks for your courtesy! – JRD

 

Where to begin…?

1. The Instruction Redemptionis Sacramentum states:

[92.] … [S]pecial care should be taken to ensure that the host is consumed by the communicant in the presence of the minister, so that no one goes away carrying the Eucharistic species in his hand. If there is a risk of profanation, then Holy Communion should not be given in the hand to the faithful.

[103.] … If [intinction] is employed, however, hosts should be used which are neither too thin nor too small, and the communicant should receive the Sacrament from the Priest only on the tongue.

[104.] 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.

The reason one cannot receive an intincted Host in the hand is because of the Precious Blood and how it starts to dissolve the Host.  There is risk of profanationRedemptionis Sacramentum mentions profanation several times.  It is a serious concern.

Also, the Eucharistic fast is law there both the dispose the communicant and protect the Sacrament from profanation.  And Fr. DeBruycker is right: it is rude.  But it beyond rude, isn’t it?  Isn’t it sacrilegious?

2.  "dipping the Host is not part of the Latin rite".  Well.  It is permitted by law in the Latin Rite but it is to be controlled very carefully.   Reinstituting Communion on the tongue would really help solve this problem of people a) self intincting which they are not to do, and then doing it wrong.  Ironically, people cite St. Cyril of Jerusalem as a way to defend the very imprudent practice of Communion in the hand.  We hear forever blah blah that St. Cyril of Jerusalem said: "When thou goest to receive communion go not with thy wrists extended, nor with thy fingers separated, but placing thy left hand as a throne for thy right, which is to receive so great a King, and in the hollow of the palm receive the body of Christ, saying, Amen.".  (Myst. cat. 5.1)

Let’s read this more closely:

In Lecture XXIII in On the Mysteries 5, Cyril describes the communicants actions.  Follow along now with my emphases:

21.  In approaching therefore, come not with thy wrists extended, or thy fingers spread; but make thy left hand a throne for the right, as for that which is to receive a King. And having hollowed thy palm, receive the Body of Christ, saying over it, Amen.  So then after having carefully hallowed thine eyes by the touch of the Holy Body, [they touched it to their eyes] partake of it; giving heed lest thou lose any portion thereof; for whatever thou losest, is evidently a loss to thee as it were from one of thine own members.  For tell me, if any one gave thee grains of gold, wouldest thou not hold them with all carefulness, being on thy guard against losing any of them, and suffering loss?  Wilt thou not then much more carefully keep watch, that not a crumb fall from thee of what is more precious than gold and precious stones[For good reason Holy Church grew in her understanding of the Sacrament and moved away from this practice in both East and West.]

22.  Then after thou hast partaken of the Body of Christ, draw near also to the Cup of His Blood; not stretching forth thine hands, but bending, and saying with an air of worship and reverence, Amen, hallow thyself by partaking also of the Blood of Christ.  And while the moisture is still upon thy lips, touch it with thine hands, and hallow thine eyes and brow and the other organs of sense. [They touched their eyes and ears and nose with the Precious Blood.] Then wait for the prayer, and give thanks unto God, who hath accounted thee worthy of so great mysteries.

So, if we are going to be liturgical archeologists, what about the Precious Blood!   But if we can’t do that with the Precious Blood, then why should we be able to touch it at all unless consuming it?  Why should lay people touch the Host?  Are a priest’s hands not consecrated for this? 

Frankly, I don’t think new chalices are going to solve the problem.  Getting rid of the practice altogher will solve the problem.

And just how do they tell the difference between the donut crumbs and the spills of coffee, anyway?

3. Picture the scrum at the doorways.  I am sure that Fr. DeBruycker is concerned that some decorum be preserved in church.  But could he have mentioned that leaving church before Mass is over is, shall I say it, wrong?

I dunno, folks.  I know that Fr. DeBruycker has a real job on his hands there.  If you want a priest to pray for, he would be a good choice.  I am sure there are a lot of things to clean up at St. Joan’s and it will take time.

But … whew…  what to do?   Close it?  Reform it?   I am glad it’s not I there.

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52 Responses to Coffee and donuts at St. Joan’s in Minneapolis

  1. . Trying to turn off the strikethrough.

  2. Most Excellent Sledgehammer says:

    Seems like they are trying to reform it. If you have a good priest who is willing to try, it’s always the preferred choice. I don’t know though…wow…many prayers for this holy priest.

  3. Chris says:

    Close it — these peole aren’t even remotely Catholic.

    I’m not saying to try to convert any NO Massers over to the traditional Mass. There are “conservative” parishes that at least take the new mass seriously and can be brought back over time to tradition. But this is just a joke and we’d be better off with less of these people.

    Sorry to be negative. But you asked!

  4. Excellent post,Father.

  5. Frank H says:

    Curious, I went to this parish’s bulletin via the link provided, and found a few more items that seem odd… A “slide projectionist” assigned at each Mass? A “pre-Mass speaker” before the “Gym Liturgies”. I can only assume that this must be a large parish that has outgrown their church? Otherwise, why “gym liturgies”?

    The good Father certainly has several challenges, it appears! I will pray for him, and his parishioners.

  6. patrick f says:

    Always pray for the priest.

    BUT WOW lol. I am a singer. And while I have my qualms about people having water bottles in the choir loft (I almost think its fair if one is a soloist and wants to praise almighty God to the best they can and its a long mass.. or you have many things you are cantoring), I cant even imagine eating during mass…. thats a whole other ball of yarn

  7. dymphna says:

    My first thought was close it but then these people
    would be inflicted on some other parish.

  8. Kradcliffe says:

    When I started reading your post, I thought it was a joke.

    I will admit that I have left Mass early, but it was because my child was being very, very naughty.

  9. RANCHER says:

    And what would be wrong with the Pastor simply saying (and meaning) clearly and concisely “here are the rules. They are based upon the need for reverence in the presence of Our Lord in the tabernacle. Obey the rules or don’t come back” Authoritarian? Yes. Effective? Quite likely. Needed/ Absolutely. This business of the majority of occasional church-going Catholics thinking the Church and their parish are democracies has got to stop. We see that in our parish weekly. The former Paster (still in residence-retired) was a touchy-feely kind of guy. He yuked it up with the congregation until about 45 seconds before he began Mass. The pre-Mass atmosphere was party like with loud talking, laughing, and absolutely no preparation for what was about to occur.

    The new Pastor BY EXAMPLE and BY WORDS has changed the atmosphere. When he is the celebrant there is dignity and respect. On the rare occasion the retiree says Mass it reverts back to his expectation level. This case in point proves that people do respect and emulate authority WHEN IT IS EXERCISED. The problem today from Bishops down is not wanting to offend anyone, to be loved by everyone, and to be everyone’s friend. I don’t need a cleric friend. I need a cleric who teaches and leads.

  10. Howard says:

    In the Orthodox and Byzantine Catholic tradition, the Eucharist is distributed in a golden spoon, what looks like bread with what looks like wine. But they also have bread which is merely blessed, not consecrated, and which people can dip in unconsecrated wine either after receiving or after the liturgy.

    (Several years ago, when I was on the path from being a Baptist to becoming a Catholic, I visited a close friend at his Orthodox church, and he freaked me out by bringing some of this back to me in my seat. I already knew and believed What Communion Is, and I was horrified at the mistaken thought that he had brought the Consecrated Host back to me.)

    OK, I know everyone here is some form of traditionalist, but I wonder if something like that couldn’t be implemented in the West. You want to go to the front and “get something” without making a good confession? Get the blessed bread. You want to self-intinct? Not a problem if you just do it with the blessed bread.

    Maybe this would remove some of the temptation to receive the Eucharist improperly? And postpone the “need” for coffee and donuts until after Mass?

  11. Mila says:

    I wish I could say I’m horrified. Unfortunately I’ve seen that and worse at two different parishes, in two different cities, in two different dioceses. And I agree with Rancher. What is needed is a pastor who will lay down the rules clearly and lead by example. Most people in the pews, sadly, don’t even know about Redemptionis Sacramentum. I think it’s time someone told them about it.

  12. Neil, London says:

    I can’t believe how excluded people are going to feel by this priest’s unfeeling trampling on their cultural norms. Who does he think he is? He needs diversity awareness training.
    If people want to go to church he should be glad and not impose his views on them.
    In my parish we have established a small casino in some old side chapel and it certainly brought in a lot more customers. The big screens show sport and the latest Hollywood releases. There’s a fortune teller and a clinic offering “health education” leaflets to the teenagers (you’re not going to stop them). Get with it.

  13. mysticalrose says:

    Um . . . wow. And I thought I had it bad at my giant, liberal, cheesy-folk-music-loving, suburban parish. I’m suddenly grateful.

  14. MargaretC says:

    “But … whew… what to do? Close it? Reform it? I am glad it’s not I there.”

    Ah, Father, that would set the cat among the pigeons…While I too am glad you’re not cursed with this parish, the mental picture it gave me was wonderful.

    Come to think of it, what do you suppose Jeanne d’Arc de Doremy thinks of them…?

  15. Thanks for your courtesy! – JRD

    I think that “JRD” pretty much illustrates the problem at St. Joan’s. How about his signing it “Fr. James R. DeBruycker, Pastor and visible head of the Roman Catholic Church in St. Joan’s Parish”?

    But could he have mentioned that leaving church before Mass is over is, shall I say it, wrong?

    Our parish has an “Ask Father” box. Recently, our assoc. pastor — a late vocation, retired Army JAG and sometime law school dean with a booming parade ground voice — devoted his Sunday sermon to answering some of the questions.

    “Is it some kind of sin to leave Mass early?”

    “I have a rather complicated and appropriately nuanced answer to that question.”

    After a pregnant pause with everyone wondering how he would express his well-known feeling about this matter, his one-word answer:

    YES!
    (In a voice that even those taking a parking lot smoking break during the sermon could hear clearly.)

  16. QC says:

    That bulletin excerpt gave me the image of a baby-sitter who has to take care of a bunch of unruly, spoiled brats.

    The tone almost sounds defeated–he’s telling them what they have to do but knows they won’t and there’s nothing he can really do about it…

  17. Alan says:

    Fr Z… my comment below isnt directed at you personally, but just in general.

    I dont understand why it would be a curse for a priest to have such a parish.

    You have the chance to do the greatest good, and rather easily too. You end the shenanigans… no ifs ands or buts.

    What’s the worst thing the parishioners could do if the priest just suddenly changes the carnival coffee shop atmosphere to something God might find worthy and reverant?

    The stubborn among them might not come back to mass…. Oh NO! They might not like the priest at first? Oh NO!!! Please…. am I missing something.

    People need to get some backbone. People will respect moral strength and certitude. As someone I respect told me once, if youre a priest and you have no opponents,

    your probably doing the devil a favor.

  18. Prayers for this good priest and his efforts to bring these folks back from the brink! Let us not forget that in salvation history, God was often very accomodating to the Israelites because of their “hardness of heart” and “stiff necks.” Slow and steady (and prayerfully!) wins the race and the hearts of his flock.

    In ICXC,

    Fr. Deacon Daniel

  19. ckdexterhaven says:

    I thought it was bad at a church in Tucson when an extended family would sit in the cry room every Sunday. (We had to sit there, one of my kids was TERRIBLE!!). This family had no kids under the age of 5, usually staggered in at about the Nicene Creed. At least 3-4 of them would carry in a Big Gulp (a 44 oz soda). Yes, of course they left immediately after communion. Looking back on the short time we attended, it didn’t even “seem” like a Catholic Church.

  20. Mike says:

    That’s because most of these “Catholic” churches in the U.S. today are not Catholic in the true sense of the word (Holy, Roman, Catholic and Apostolic) – rather, they are a mixture of some sort of a vague, post-Vatican II creed that in certain outward aspects resembles the true faith, but when it comes to their members’ praxis and belief, it is certainly not the same faith for which the martyrs died.
    As the saying goes, by their works you shall know them. On a more fundamental level, though, who in their right mind would not want to rush out early from a novus ordo mass? The St. Joan phenomemon is perfectly understandable – if you don’t really believe that the high point of the mass is the transsubstantiation, then once the presider is done preaching about the joys of sodomy and being ecologically sensitive, and once you’ve consumed your Koolaid and wafer, you might as well head for the door to hug a tree and sodomize your neighbor…
    The only thing I don’t understand is what keeps these people coming back each week…must be the feeling of warmth and community.

  21. Brian says:

    Fr. Jim DeBruycker,

    You have a crisis. I would recommend that you do not try to correct abuses one little abuse at a time, but that you spend some time before our Lord; give some homilies about reverence; and prepare your parish for a very different experience in Mass.

    Prepare and train, then institute either a Latin Novus Ordo, ad orientem, or a TLM (my recommendation). A few will grumble, just let them go their way.

    I, however, am a layman and cannot fully understand your situation.

    There is a holy priest in Northern Virginia, Fr.Franklyn Mcafee who for several years has instituted beautiful Masses where he has pastored. He was pastor of St. Catherine of Siena Parish in Great Falls from 1997-2005. The Latin Novus Ordo Mass that he began there years ago, with gorgeous chant and polyphony, continues to this day. He now pastors at St. John’s in McLean VA, where he instituted a beatifully celebrated TLM, again with chant and polyphony. For the past two years, he has hosted a chant workshop at his church conducted by Scott Turkington.

    He is first, and foremost, a parish priest.

    Perhaps if you contact this generous, devout priest, he will be able to counsel and inspire you. He certainly inspires me.

  22. Joe says:

    It sounds to me like Fr DeBruycker has a bit of a mess on his hands and is trying to address it pastorally. I wish he were my pastor.
    Howard, French Canadians used to have a ‘pain benite’ or blessed bread they would distribute to children, etc, often the rest of the bread that the hosts were cut from. The Poles also have blessed bread at Christmas. It should be something easy to introduce, avoiding any danger of confusing the children (e.g. not making the pieces the same shape as a Host to be consecrated)

  23. Fr. BJ says:

    ‘pain benite’ or blessed bread … It should be something easy to introduce

    I suspect that blessed bread is the last thing they need right now! They are already confused enough. I think a visit from the Archbishop is in order….

    What a tough job that would be. He would essentially have to tell them that they have been sold a bill of goods over the years, no one with authority really ever stepped in and tried to do much to stop it, and now they have to stop… and then he would have to take all the flack for it. Yikes.

  24. Shin says:

    “If this modality is employed, however, hosts should be used which are neither too thin nor too small, and the communicant should receive the Sacrament from the Priest only on the tongue.”

    So unless there’ve been some follow up documents there’s not even a provision for the Deacon to distribute this way?

  25. Carlos Palad says:

    “OK, I know everyone here is some form of traditionalist, but I wonder if something like that couldn’t be implemented in the West. You want to go to the front and “get something” without making a good confession? Get the blessed bread. You want to self-intinct? Not a problem if you just do it with the blessed bread.”

    Actually, blessed bread was common in the pre-Tridentine Western liturgies. This
    was one of the many liturgical traditions that we used to share with the East.

    Incidentally, there is a lot of debate about the authenticity of the passage
    ascribed to St. Cyril of Jerusalem.

  26. Jordanes says:

    Carlos Palad said: Incidentally, there is a lot of debate about the authenticity of the passage ascribed to St. Cyril of Jerusalem.

    To my knowledge, the “debate” has to do with the controversy over Communion in the hand. Some opponents of Communion in the hand have attempted to deny the authenticity of that quote, attributing it to another bishop and suggesting it arose out of some heretical belief or tendency. I’ve never been impressed with those arguments, however, and I believe the attempt to deny this passage was from St. Cyril fails. And after all, it’s not as if this apssage were the only early evidence for Communion in the hand. Tertullian, Clement of Alexandria, Origen, St. John the Damascene, and the 101st Canon of Trullo also refer or allude to Communion in the hand as the norm, and Trullo even mentions placing the hands in the form of a cross just like St. Cyril does.

  27. Phil (NL) says:

    Two points strike me most here:
    – How on earth did eating and drinking (of the normal kind) during Mass creep in?? And judging from several comments it’s not an isolated case. (thankfully I’ve yet to see any of that on this side of the water). Even those not taking communion should simply restrain themselves for an hour, it isn’t that hard. Water on a hot day or in case of a sore throat is just about the limit, if you ask me. I’d not even accept my students to dine on cookies during a lecture – then why accept it during mass?
    – Why o why is their communion under both species? Is there some sort of regulation in this diocese or perhaps the US encouraging this? Communion in the hand has certain risks (and on the tongue isnt risk-free either), but those risk materialize rarely. There are a thousand ways reception of the Precious Blood can be accompagnied by mishaps. Communion under both species is not needed, so why risk it? Saves some cash as well for new chalices too.

    Best of luck to this priest, he’ll need it, and prayers too.

  28. rosie says:

    That parish is the first, and the WORST of any I have ever heard about. And that is going some. We should all beg the intercession of St. John Vianney. Via the rosary and through the Immaculate Heart.

    May God strengthen His priests and Mary keep them.

  29. John says:

    If Fr DeBruycker needs some assistance – and I’d say he needs Almighty assistance – in restoring the Catholic faith to this apostasized parish – I hear Father Robert Altier is still available…

  30. R says:

    I’ve never seen anyone eating or drinking during Mass, except for little children with bottles or a handful of cheerios.

    Phil – Communion under both species is typical in the US. Of all the parishes I’ve ever visited, I can’t remember any NO church that didn’t do so. There was one that used intincture, though.

  31. George Festa says:

    My First Holy Communion was done via intinction (By the priest, kneeling at the altar rail in 1972)–with this being said intinction was only used at my home parish for extra-special occasions, and not done every week.

    When was this practice given up in the Latin Rite ? The priest who gave me my First Holy Communion was very orthodox (Please remember him in your prayers for the dead: Fr. Thomas B. Reilly +1976).

    I agree that lay people should not use intinction and note your citations from the early Church Fathers who were correcting similar abuses as we are confronted with today.

  32. Ohio Annie says:

    I think what Mike says is really unfair.

    I have seen liturgical abuses but nowhere near like those described in this article. Though whenever I tried to talk to priests about the abuses I was blown off. I now attend a parish where the priests are seen preparing for Mass by praying before the tabernacle and otherwise setting good example. And they say Mass in the Ordinary Form.

  33. Gerry Scheid says:

    at a former parish, the pastor had to warn the congregation(s) before Mass to stop chewing gum during Mass along with in the Communion line–I figured that was about as low as you can go. Lucky they served coffee and donuts after Mass.

  34. jarhead462 says:

    I think it’s funny, how Fr. is worried about making a mockery of the Communion Fast, and dosen’t seem to want to jettison the treatment of the body and blood of Christ as if it were some kind of chip-n-dip routine.
    And frankly, when did we go to Communion under both species? I never saw this until I came back to the Church a few years ago….What are we, Lutherans?

    Sorry for the tone, I am extra cranky today…has anyone noticed that many of the things that Fr. Z posted about the day after the election, have already started to come to fruition?

    Semper Fi!

  35. jarhead462 says:

    After re-reading what I posted above, I realize that I am probably being unfair to Fr.DeBruycker. My apologies. However, I don’t think the slow, careful approach works here, just tell these people what’s what, and if they head for the door, so be it. If they have the gall to have coffee and cookies during Holy Mass, then they don’t believe anyway.

    Yes, I am still grumpy ;)

    Semper Fi!

  36. o.h. says:

    Kradcliffe,

    Whenever I read these (just) disapproving comments about those who leave Mass early–saying it’s a sin, calling it “the Judas shuffle”–I always assume an implicit exception for us ladies leaving with screaming babies, tantruming toddlers, misbehaving children, poopy diapers that overwhelm the incense, pregnant bellies that can’t wait for the ladies’ room for another five minutes, etc. (I did actually have a well-meaning lady physically block my early egress with my literally screaming toddler, wishing me to tarry while she advised me that next time I should bring Cheerios with me; but generally the other faithful are happy to help mothers with Issues to a quick exit.)

    I just listened to Fr. Corapi talking about how the dignity of motherhood was commensurate with the dignity of the priesthood. I take that seriously, and try to exit in a swift, dignified manner, even with an uncooperative offspring pinned under my arm. Even Judas would be happy to see us leaving early.

  37. Phil (NL) says:

    o.h.,

    I think few, if any, would take issue with people leaving early because there is an urgent need. To your list one can add doctors, fireman etc. on call, or anyone who (or who’s kids) cannot remain without causing scandal. The question is, does everyone who leaves fall in such a category? When there is a crowd of early leavers, one cannot help but doubt…

    R,

    Then I’m curious as to the origins of the wide-spread reception-under-both-species approach. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen in Europe, but it’s the exception rather than the rule. Did the bishop conference mandate it? Or did the custom grow over time (and since when)?

  38. Ohio Annie says:

    o.h., you sound like a good faithful person concerned about the solemnity of the Mass. I wish at my parish people would take screaming babies for a walk. How the little ones suffer sometimes at adult “events.” Cheerios are frowned upon at my parish too. But nobody would block your exit. God bless you.

  39. Ed the Roman says:

    No two kinds at my 1970 parish.

  40. Will says:

    As for communion under both kinds, have a look at this document from the USCCB.
    Particularly paragraph 20:

    20. The Council’s decision to restore Holy Communion under both kinds at the bishop’s discretion took expression in the first edition of the Missale Romanum and enjoys an even more generous application in the third typical edition of the Missale Romanum:

    Holy Communion has a more complete form as a sign when it is received under both kinds. For in this manner of reception a fuller sign of the Eucharistic banquet shines forth. Moreover there is a clearer expression of that will by which the new and everlasting covenant is ratified in the blood of the Lord and of the relationship of the Eucharistic banquet to the eschatological banquet in the Father’s kingdom.

    As for the parish, the Priest should take drastic measures:

    The Coffee and Donuts should be discontinued immediately.

    Rather than ordering wider chalices, he should order narrower ones, or distribute Communion under the form of bread only.

    He should eliminate, or at least suspend, the use of extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion. Perhaps a brother priest could volunteer to assist in distribution.

    He should teach about the Eucharist and the liturgy often and with great intensity. He should use the homily, the bulletin, and perhaps schedule classes before or after mass and encourage the parishioners to attend.

  41. Tony says:

    But … whew… what to do? Close it? Reform it? I am glad it’s not I there.

    But then where would the lay people go to deliver their Sunday homily, and the gays and lesbians go for their support group?

  42. Will says:

    After more fully perusing the bulletin, and then their website, I’m beginning to wonder if this parish can be fixed. Note this gem of a mission statement:

    Church of St. Joan of Arc
    Mission Statement

    St. Joan of Arc is a joyful Christian community
    which celebrates the loving Word of God
    in worship and in action.

    We transcend traditional boundaries and draw those
    who seek spiritual growth and social justice.

    We welcome diverse ideas and encourage reflection
    on the message of the Gospel.

    We are committed to the equality
    of all our members and strive to ensure
    their full participation
    through liturgy, education, and service.

    By these means we seek to empower all
    who come to grow in wisdom and bring to reality
    the promise of Christ.

    It’s not about conversion or preaching the unchanging truth of the Gospel, but inclusion and diversity.
    This situation may require really drastic measures, like replacing the priest, stringent oversight by the diocese, or even closure.

  43. dad29 says:

    To give Father the benefit of the doubt, perhaps your epigram “Brick by Brick” applies here.

    First, get the alligators out of the way–THEN drain the swamp.

  44. John Enright says:

    You really have to look at the weekly parish bulletin, people! This parish has Liturgical Slide Projectionists! How odd.

    Here’s another bit from the bulletin:

    “Eco-Spirituality: Help save rainforests by clicking on therainforestsite.org. Every time you visit the site, a simple and free “click” releases sponsors’ financial support to purchase a small piece of rainforest land. This helps prevent the land from being chopped down for agriculture.”

    I don’t want to destroy rainforests, but what’s the message there? “Spare the tree, starve a beggar?”

  45. Frank H says:

    John Enright – I don’t think there’s much chance of beggars starving. They just have to go to the pre-Mass coffee and donut event!

  46. John Enright says:

    Frank H:

    Ah, a subtle point I overlooked. LOL. But, of course, that only works for the beggars in the Twin Cities.

  47. RC says:

    For Patrick: you don’t have to sweat any scruples about water in the choir loft. The Code of Canon Law says explicitly that water does not break the communion fast.

  48. Phil (NL) says:

    Will: thanks.

    FWIW, it doesn’t seem like a smart move from the bishops to me, to put it mildly. However, I didn’t see anything requiring that each priest allows for reception under both kinds, so if the priest is willing to risk some heat, he could end the practice.

  49. RANCHER says:

    Given this parish’s fixation, er focus, on social justice is it not possible that the coffee and donuts are in fact paid for by the USCCB’s CCHD? Maybe even via the Acorn conduit? Perhaps the defunding of Acorn will solve the problem….nah

  50. Hugo says:

    Fr. Z:

    It may be time to restrict this site to registered users.

  51. Michael says:

    The main problem here isn’t Communion in the Hand or under both Species (the Assyrian Church of the East practices both), the main problem is the laxity of the priest-celebrant which the laity has emulated (or is it the laxity of the seminary which ordains the lax layman??)