From a reader:
I was at Mass a little early today and noticed that a few lay helpers approached the tabernacle, and then I watched as they took a ciborium back to the narthex where the rest the of the gifts were waiting for the presentation later during Mass. Is this normal? I would believe that unconsecrated hosts used during Mass would have originated from the sacristy and not the Tabernacle. Did I just witness them try to reconsecrate already consecrated hosts?!
Thanks in advance for any info Father. If that’s the case I will be contacting the Bishop immediately.
A few things strike me about this.
First, it is all a little vague.
I don’t know what you saw. You too, apparently, don’t know what you saw.
And yet you are pretty worked up about it, it seems.
Do you really think that some priest would be trying to consecrate consecrated Hosts?
That said, it would be very incorrect to have ciboria of consecrated Hosts on the altar in full view at the time of the consecration, or that they should be brought to the altar at the time of the offertory. It would cause people to wonder… as you are wondering.
Back to your observations. If this happens all the time at Mass, and this can be documentation, then something ought to be done about it.
You see… even if you don’t really know what happened, if it were to be repeated, there might be a very grave abuse going on. In no way should the impression be given that any Host have to be reconsecrated for that Mass. That would be a sort of Lutheran thing to do. While they believe that their eucharist has somehow the presence of Christ together with the bread and wine, after that presence is no longer need, it is not there. You have simple bread and wine again, which you could return to the bottle or basket or reuse if need be. Some Lutherans are become more strongly sacramental about their eucharist, but this is generally the way it goes.
God forbid that any Catholic priest should ever develop any practice that might cause people to wonder about his sacramental theology.
If you were to see this again, I might approach the pastor/priest and ask what happened. You might follow up his answer (if it indeed tells you something strange) with a letter just to get things straight. Then you have a start of some documentation before you involve the bishop.
Of course if the guy is entirely off the wall and uncooperative, then the bishop must be contacted right away, as well, perhaps, as the CDW.
But I would admonish you: sometimes people think they see something and they didn’t. Sometimes people think they understood what what they saw, but didn’t.
Check yourself before huffing and puffing.