From a reader. My emphases:
I thought you would find the following interesting. I was at a meeting at my NO parish last night and found this small book obviously being used by the youth ccd director. I’m sure it is very typical of what is used in most NO parishes.
As I flipped through it, I found the following "aside" in the section on receiving Communion (typed as printed).
Receiving Communion "In the Old Days"
The Communion Fast began at midnight and included everything–even water! Catholics approached the Communion rail, a marble or wooden divider between the sanctuary and the benches or pews in the larger section of the church. They ascended one or more steps, knelt on the top one, placed their hands under a cloth, which was draped over the rail, and formed a flat space in the cloth with their thumbs and forefingers (to hold the consecrated host if it should slip from their tongue). The priest approached each person from the right, accompanied by an acolyte or altar server, who carried a small plate called a paten, which was placed under the person’s chin (again, to catch the host if it should slip). The priest would hold up the host in front of each communicant and say, in Latin, "Corpus Domini nostri Jesu Christi custodiat animam tuam in vitam aeternam," which means, "May the Body of our Lord Jesus Christ preserve your soul into eternal life." Then he would place the host on the person’s tongue and move on to the next person. Only priests were allowed to distribute Communion. If there were many receiving Communion and only one or two priests, the distribution could take…quite some time.
Too much ceremony and too many precautions based on fear? Perhaps. But it did instill reverence for the sacredness of receiving Communion. It was difficult to think of receiving Communion as ordinary and routine.
From Liguouri, "Handbook for Today’s Catholic Teen"