Bp. Olmsted issues the actual norms for Communion under both kinds for D. Phoenix

His Excellency, Most Rev. Thomas Olmsted, Bishop of Phoenix, has issued formally the new guidelines for Communion under both kinds (CUBK) in that diocese.   There has been a lot of controversy about these local norms.

It was trumpeted by liberals that Bp. Olmsted was taking “the wine” or “the cup” away from people.  It seems to me that they were more afraid that there would be fewer lay people going up into the sanctuary than they were about having CUBK.  I get the impression sometimes that they are like the kid who sees the shiny thing and wants that shiny thing no matter what and that she then screams and stomps until she gets it.  But I digress.

Now that the Bishop has officially issued norms, people in some quarters are saying that he has backed down, that he has caved in, that he has come around after his poor leadership, etc.

As I read his norms, I am struck again by what first struck me about his efforts concerning CUBK: he is mainly concerned with making sure the Church‘s norms are followed and that CUBK be both reverent and spiritually fruitful.

So, the most important part of Bp. Olmsted’s norms is not the list of occasions when CUBK can be distributed.  The most important part of the norms is the clear explanation of the CONDITIONS for CUBK.  Here are those conditions.

As you read them, it seems to be useful to ponder whether they are actually being followed, are in place, where CUBK is presently offered:

B. Conditions for the use of Holy Communion under both kinds:

i. The faithful present at Mass are properly catechized and continually receive catechesis regarding the dogmatic principles on the matter laid down by the Ecumenical Council of Trent.1

ii. The ordinary ministers (i.e., priests and deacons) are able to purify all the sacred vessels either during or immediately following Dismissal of the people at the conclusion of the Mass.2

iii. There exists not even a small danger of the sacred species being profaned.3

iv. There is not such a large number of communicants that it is difficult to gauge the amount of wine for the Eucharist. There is no danger that more than a reasonable quantity of the Blood of Christ remains after distribution of Holy Communion.

v. There is an adequate number of ordinary ministers of Holy Communion for the distribution of Holy Communion.4 When this is not the case, there is an adequate number of properly deputed and trained extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion.5

vi. The role of the Priest and Deacon as the ordinary ministers of Holy Communion is not obscured by an excessive use of extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion; the bond between the ministerial priesthood and the Eucharist is clearly manifest.6

vii. There are no health concerns such as influenza or some other contagious disease that would deter the faithful from approaching the chalice.

viii. “The chalice should not be ministered to lay members of Christ’s faithful where…a notable part of the people continues to prefer not to approach the chalice for various reasons, so that the sign of unity would in some sense be negated.”7

1 These catechetical principals are identified in “Norms for the Distribution and Reception of Holy Communion Under Both Kinds in the Dioceses of the United States of America,” 25. Redemptionis Sacramentum, 100. Cf. Ecumenical Council of Trent, Session XXI, 16 July 1562.
2 GIRM 163.
3 Redemptionis Sacramentum, 102.
4 Redemptionis Sacramentum, 102.
5 Redemptionis Sacramentum, 102.
6 “Norms for the Distribution and Reception of Holy Communion Under Both Kinds in the Dioceses of the United States of America,” 24.
7 Redemptionis Sacramentum, 102.

My impression is that, all along, Bp. Olmsted was trying to make sure that CUBK was leading to spiritual benefit rather than irreverence, indifference, and even profanation of the Blessed Sacrament.  There were missteps on the part of the diocese in the process of developing and issuing the norms and there was obtuse mean-spiritedness in the press on the part of those who attacked him.

In the balance, however, both the missteps and the final outcome have served to underscore that our reception of Holy Communion has conditions and there are norms which regulate what we do.  We must obey the norms and strive to fulfill the conditions in order to receive the graces Christ extends to us, and to avoid scandal which undermines the faith others have.

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37 Responses to Bp. Olmsted issues the actual norms for Communion under both kinds for D. Phoenix

  1. B Knotts says:

    It seems to me (and I submitted a dubium to Rome about this some years ago, but did not receive a response) that under a plain reading of Redemptionis Sacramentum, Holy Communion under both Kinds can normally only be offered when there is a sufficient number of ordinary ministers available to distribute.

    I cannot find a way to read it that would allow for the use of extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion for this, as if there is an insufficient number of ordinary ministers, distribution from the chalice could always simply be skipped.

  2. leonugent2005 says:

    Father Z, I agree. Indeed it was a digression. [Then it’s really a good thing that this is my blog! o{];¬) ]

  3. Supertradmum says:

    If priests just followed those norms, there would be less extraordinary ministers…The Bishop did an excellent job clarifying the subject.

  4. mrose says:

    Fr Z, Thank you for a thoughtful analysis of Bp. Olmstead’s actions. I was rather curious as to what was really going on when I saw headlines about the supposed “about-face” of Bp. Olmstead and hoped you would do a commentary. I think your reading of His Excellency’s and the diocese’s actions is much more accurate AND charitable.

    Kudos to Bp. Olmstead for not only mentioning, but mentioning in the first line, the importance of Eucharistic dogma from the Council of Trent!! I think B Knotts has an interesting query/point, and I was still saddened to see a relatively free pass given to EMHC usage, but His Excellency also appears to be putting reverence for the Sacrament above other concerns, which is a good start.

  5. AnnAsher says:

    I think it is outrageous the many moons it takes to receive clear direction on matters that never should have gone off rail in the first place. How is it that the exception for the US to more liberally administer from the Cup expired in 2005 And we still have to argue about it today? How is it that they never caught on to the Roman practice of having the Priest administer via intinction? Seems that would satisfy all desires except that of having hoardes of EMHC’s. I also wrote to the Congregation for Divine Worship after I’d made border to border car trips and visited many parishes throughout the country, finding common the excessive EMHC’s, irreverence to Christ in the Eucharist in many ways – primarily by ignoring His presence in order to go on some rambling diatribe or have everyone do an Our Father dance or some such thing; countless masses interrupted for the presentation of certificates, along with not being able to find tabernacles and rampant cross talk during the distribution of Holy Communion. These practices are common – I’d like to see Our Pope bring down the hammer.

  6. jfm says:

    I don’t see how these norms do anything to limit use of EMHCs. All the priest needs to do is make sure he is there to consecrate and distribute communion and then remain visible (probably standing dead center) to lessen (visual) chance of obscuring his role in the Eucharist. Indeed, there is no limit to how often CUBK can occur. I think these norms, while clear, are a virtual blank check for CUBK to be seamlessly integrated into regular services.

    To be clear, there only needs to be one minister of Holy Communion: the priest who consecrates. (My grandmother cooked and she served the food. She didn’t need – wouldn’t use – anyone else to do her job. She did, however, allow some of us to help her bring the dishes to the kitchen, but she did all of the cleaning – nothing was going into her cabinets that was not spotless.)

  7. Elizabeth D says:

    These good and prudent norms still suggest that Communion should not be distributed under both kinds at the typical Sunday parish Mass. My parish is arguably especially good on Eucharistic devotion, yet I don’t think conditions i, iii, or viii are met really sufficiently. So I don’t have a problem with a norm that gets specific that CUBK should be limited to particular days and occasions. And the orthodox and reverent parishes here in my diocese where conditions i-vii are most likely to be met adequately, are the very ones where Communion is distributed under one species by the ordinary ministers, and where even if CUBK were offered viii would not be satisfied.

  8. jhayes says:

    B Knotts said, “I cannot find a way to read it that would allow for the use of extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion for this”

    Redemptionis Sacramentum 102 allows the use of EMHCs to minister the chalice. Bishop Olmstead uses the language from RS.

    102. The chalice should not be ministered to lay members of Christ’s faithful where there is such a large number of communicants that it is difficult to gauge the amount of wine for the Eucharist and there is a danger that “more than a reasonable quantity of the Blood of Christ remains to be consumed at the end of the celebration.” The same is true wherever access to the chalice would be difficult to arrange, or where such a large amount of wine would be required that its certain provenance and quality could only be known with difficulty, or wherever there is not an adequate number of sacred ministers or extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion with proper formation, or where a notable part of the people continues to prefer not to approach the chalice for various reasons, so that the sign of unity would in some sense be negated.

  9. jhayes says:

    Here are the occasions on which Bp. Olmstead has authorized pastors in his diocese to distribute Communion under both kinds (in addition to those provided in the GIRM)

    In the Diocese of Phoenix, Holy Communion under both kinds may be offered to all the faithful in the following instances whenever it seems appropriate to the priest to whom a given community is entrusted, provided that the conditions listed are met.

    i. Solemnities, Sundays, Holy Days of Obligation

    ii. The occasions listed in the ritual books

    iii. Weekday Masses

    http://www.diocesephoenix.org/onenewsstory.php?themonth=201111&story=1008980432

  10. jfm says:

    JHayes,
    It seems that the only times that CUBK might not be allowed are EF masses…
    JFM

  11. jhayes says:

    @jfm

    I haven’t looked into that. Apart from the fact that CUBK for the laity didn’t exist in 1962, what would prevent the celebrant from doing it if he chose to?

  12. Hidden One says:

    I think that the only Masses where the first seven conditions were/could have been met that I have served or otherwise heard were Masses where the vast or even exclusive preference of all lay people present was to receive under one kind. Ironic, that.

  13. St. Rafael says:

    I still think he caved and needed to get a spine. Communion under one species is the direction that the Latin rite needs to go. Bishop Olmstead was leading his diocese in the right direction until the clarification.

    It’s good he cleared up the confusion that the indult expiring in ’05 was not about CUBK. However, he still has the right and authority to ban CUBK in his diocese, because even though the indult did not expire, it is still an indult that can be removed by any pastor or bishop.

    Look at the GIRM guidelines. They allow CUBK for every mass. Every Sunday and every weekday. CUBK all the time and every time. It would have been better if the Bishop Olmstead had stuck to the original decision to limit CUBK to only certain Masses such as Corpus Christi, weddings, and other limited Solemnities. The whole point is to not give priests the options of choosing CUBK for basically every Mass. The less options priests have to choose from, the better. Priests will only have the option to choose from among a handful of feats. They would be mandated to only celebrate under one kind for weekdays and nearly all Sundays. That is the reform that is needed. Close the options priests have with bans, and bring uniformity to an entire diocese and rite.

    As long as the conditions in the GIRM for CUBK are allowed to stand as it is written, CUBK will never be be both reverent and spiritually fruitful.

  14. jhayes says:

    Because of the confusion about whether an Indult had expired and Communion under both kinds had to be restricted, Archbishop Gregory Aymond, Chair of the Secretariat of Divine Worship, sent a letter to all US Bishops on October 26 clarifying the situation.

    Many questions have been raised recently regarding liturgical law in the United States for the distribution of Holy Communion under both kinds. The attached document is provided by the Committee as a clarification and resource for your ministry.

    Letter and Document

  15. Dr. K says:

    He gave in, plain and simple.

  16. St. Rafael says:

    As long as the conditions in the GIRM for CUBK are allowed to stand as it is written, CUBK will never be be both reverent and spiritually fruitful.

    Let me clarify. I was not speaking about the actual 7 condiditions in the GIRM for CUBK. I meant the text of the GIRM that allows bishops to permit CUBK at any and every Mass. Conditions exist in the GIRM for CUBK at every sinlge Mass, every day, year round, for the entire liturgical calendar and year.

  17. Speravi says:

    It seems to me, he is simply stating the norms laid down in Redemptionis Sacramentum and the GIRM. But we have all already had these norms for years. If a bishop does not tell us what he expects this to look like in his own diocese, the status quo will stand.
    Priests need to HEAR from their bishops what they REALLY think the Church means by the quoted passage:
    “vi. The role of the Priest and Deacon as the ordinary ministers of Holy Communion is not obscured by an excessive use of extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion; the bond between the ministerial priesthood and the Eucharist is clearly manifest.6″

    If bishops, as fathers of their diocese and presbyterium, will not tell their priests what their vision of the implementation of this passage LOOKS LIKE in their local conditions and what the violation of this passage LOOKS LIKE, it is highly unlikely that we will see any significant change in the status quo.
    The status quo PRESUMES that the status quo is ALREADY fulfilling these principles. If bishops do not think that our current practices are in accord with these laws, PRIESTS would appreciate HEARING this. If they don’t hear it, any change will be their word against the word of their neighboring pastor and their faithful will be confused.

    Is their really such a thing as the priest being “obscured by excessive use of extraordinary ministers”?
    The status quo says that having 10 extraordinary ministers and one ordinary minister at every Sunday Mass (such that this is what most of the faithful see every single time they come to Mass) is no problem. If that is the case, what does “excessive extraordinary ministers” look like? Fifty to one?
    Is the GIRM really envisaging the use of extraordinary ministers at every single Mass, every single day? The status quo says that this is fine. If the bishops do not agree, it would be nice to hear it.

    Perhaps a heavy legal imposition wouldn’t work(?). But even in this, pastors need an ‘ideal form’ which they will have to figure out how to ‘instantiate’ in their local situation, with all its ‘material defects.’ How closely the result resembles the ‘ideal form’ will vary…but without the ‘form,’ nothing will change.

    It would be refreshing if the fathers of our dioceses would issue pastoral letters to their whole dioceses on the exact nature of the the “bond between the ministerial priesthood and the Eucharist” and what it implies for the distribution of communion.

    May God bless Bishop Olmstead and all bishops, and always guide us through their care.

  18. Fr_Sotelo says:

    St. Raphael:
    You stated: “However, he still has the right and authority to ban CUBK in his diocese, because even though the indult did not expire, it is still an indult that can be removed by any pastor or bishop. Look at the GIRM guidelines. They allow CUBK for every mass.”

    It is not within the legal competence of a diocesan bishop to restrict an option permitted by the General Instruction of the Roman Missal, since it is an act of papal legislation. The nature of an indult is to permit that which is at present not permitted in the general liturgical legislaion. At one time, CUBK was not permitted at every Sunday Mass, and so to have it at Sunday Mass was granted by “indult” of the diocesan bishop in his diocese.

    However, now that the GIRM allows for CUBK for any Mass, practically speaking, it is no longer an option granted by indult. Papal law grants the option. A diocesan bishop would be overriding the Pope if he were to ban it in his diocese.

    I find Bishop Olmsted’s guidelines to be very reasonable.

  19. Fr_Sotelo says:

    I should clarify that CUBK is always an option. Papal legislation now gives a general permission for that option, but it is certainly not required. This is where bishops are running into problems. In many dioceses, they have mandated that the chalice be given, regardless of the judgement of the pastor.

    And, as a custom which is being forced on parishes, there is not sufficient catechesis or “quality control” with the proper training of EMHC and proper technique of offering the Precious Blood. In my parish, I do not give the chalice at Sunday Mass, but I have classmates who tell me that their bishop orders them to do so on Sunday in their parishes.

  20. Speravi says:

    As I look at the ‘USCCB Secretariat of Worship’ document “jhayes” linked to, I am left wondering if the EMHC question and CUBK questions are not ships passing in the night. Does the Church, when encouraging frequent CUBK, imagine ordinary ministers? Does Rome when speaking of EMHC (especially in cases where there are no acolytes) imagine only occasional CUBK? I wonder what the writers of these documents were really imagining. It would be nice if the ‘USCCB secretariat of worship’ would WRITE to the ‘Congregation of Divine Worship’ and find out.

  21. Alan Aversa says:

    @mrose: Yes, I agree! What U.S. bishop has quoted Trent since Vatican II? May God bless and preserve Bp. Olmsted!

  22. St. Rafael says:

    Thank you Fr_Sotelo.
    You’re correct CUBK is no longer an indult because it has been superseded as liturgical law in the GIRM.

    However, CUBK is still an option for the diocesan bishop. GIRM no. 283 states that each diocesan bishop may establish norms for Holy Communion under boths kinds within his diocese. It says he “may establish”. That doesn’t mean he HAS to establish norms. The diocesan bishop is given the faculty to permit CUBK whenever it may seem appropriate to the priest of a given community. A diocesan bishop is given the faculty to permit it, but he doesn’t have to permit it.

  23. St. Rafael says:

    During the Council of Trent, the bishops of the Church deliberated, and said the faithful were not ready for the chalice. Now if the Catholic laity were not ready for the chalice in the aftermath of the Protestant revolution, they are definitely not ready for the chalice today.

    The current crisis in the Church today is worse than the Protestant crisis of the 16th century. Today, Catholics don’t even know their catechism and faith. You have 25% Mass attendance. Today, 75% of Catholics don’t even believe in the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. Can anyone with a straight face really say that we were ready for the chalice in the aftermath of the late 20th century?

  24. Lurker 59 says:

    Part of the problem that we have when we talk about certain things being a “fuller sign” is that it is understood in terms of quantity rather than quality. Because of this, your average Catholic in the pew thinks they get “more Jesus” under CUBK rather than CUOK. The whole topic of “signs” is problematic for your average typical Catholic anyway since either the neo-Platonism of the Father’s or Thomism, which allows such concepts to be intelligible, is lacking in your average individual’s philosophical worldview especially if they have gone through public education.

    I find that Bp. Omsted’s norms are wise and much needed, though in parts a bit difficult to uniformly put into practice. For example B.iii. There will always be a small danger of profanation of the Sacred Blood if the chalice is passed back and forth from EMHC/OMHC to communicant. Secondly, when communicants do not receive the Sacred Blood, most walk by without genuflecting or making any sort of acknowledgement of Jesus’ Eucharistic Presence. That should eliminate CUBC right there in most situations until those issues are fixed (I would suggest a return to using the communion rail as the easiest solution). However, in reality you are not going to see what is and what is not “small” profanation interpreted uniformly.

    I agree with B Knotts that CUBK should simply not be done if there is an ordinary minister and it necessitates the usage of EMHC, in most circumstances. Jhayes is correct that Redemptionis sacramentum indicates that EMHC can be used to distribute from the chalice, but I worry that this could lead to an interpretation that is perhaps too broad. RS does not allow the desire for CUBK to be an allowable usage of EMHC. RS allows for three instances of EMHC 1.) When there is no priest or deacon 2.) when the priest (without a deacon) is to ill or infirm 3.) or that the number of faithful coming to Communion is extraordinarily great (RS 158). The desire for CUBK is not a condition to use EMHC.

    In a situation where there is only one ordinary minister, and he can distribute CUOK without unduly prolonging the Mass, there is no warrant in the norms to have CUBK or EMHC. If there is only one ordinary minister, and he can distribute CUBK without unduly prolonging the Mass, there is no warrant for EMHCs. If there are two ordinary ministers, and they can distribute CUOK but not CUBK without unduly prolonging the Mass, there is no warrant for EMHCs. If there are two ordinary ministers and they cannot distribute CUOK without unduly prolonging the Mass, then there is warrant for EMHCs. Now I think there can be had a real discussion that in such a case that EMHC should only distribute from the ciborium, since the only reason they are there in this case is to speed up the time needed for distribution.

    It is vastly important to keep our focus on the fact that the “sign value” / “sign unity” is ONLY achieved fully when ordinary ministers distribute CUOK or CUBK. The desire on the part of the faithful should be that the Church has enough ordinary ministers so that EMHC need not exist. EMHC are a band-aid and stop-gap measure and need to be treated as such.

    I agree with what Speravi said about the need for Bishops to explain what things should look like, both to priests and the lay faithful. To answer your question, it appears to me that Rome and the USCCB do not see exactly eye to eye on these issues. In the 70’s-early 80’s the then NCCB was strongly pushing for changes in the structure of Communion in ways that Rome was pushing in the opposite direction for. Much of the confusion today represents unresolved issues, tensions, and differences between the general directions of Rome and the USCCB.

  25. jhayes says:

    Baltimore takes the position that Communion under both kinds is normative. Under certain conditions the priest may distribute under the species of bread alone, but only for that occasion.

    The Archbishop may establish norms, within the limits of universal and particular law, for the distribution of Holy Communion under both kinds in his own diocese (GIRM, no. 283). In the Archdiocese of Baltimore, Holy Communion under both kinds is to be considered normative. Parishes that do not currently offer Communion under the species of wine should implement this practice. And those that stopped distributing Communion under the species of wine during the H1N1 Virus epidemic scare should now fully restore it and parishioners once again invited to share in it.

    Of course, in specific circumstances and for a just reason (e.g., danger of profanation or spillage; a very large number of communicants so that the rite becomes difficult; Masses involving large numbers of young children, such as school Masses, where parents are not present), the priest to whom a community has been entrusted may decide that Communion for that occasion is to be offered under the species of bread alone.

    Full Text

    This is the mirror image of Phoenix which says that the priest may decide to distribute under both kinds but only if certain conditions are met.

  26. FrAWeidner says:

    I wonder if a bishop mandating CUBK in his diocese would have recourse against a priest who insisted upon doing so by means of intinction. Intinction is by fundamental definition CUBK. It seems as though it’s a legitimate way of implementing CUBK in a way that a bishop wouldn’t have legitimate authority to gainsay. Canon lawyers?

  27. jhayes says:

    @FrAWeidner,

    The next paragraph in the linked Baltimore document includes this:

    distribution by intinction ought not be used in the Archdiocese of Baltimore; and it may never be used as the sole method of distribution.

  28. James Joseph says:

    Isn’t grasping at equality against the virtues? Yes.

    Then why grasp after a chalice that is not ours to take up?

    If I were a priest I would be mortified to enter into holy Sacrifice. Nevermind me being a regular fella whose hands are soiled and non-consecrated!

    I suppose a follow question could be this: If I were say, ummm…. a Satan worshipper and I routinely made inversions of nature, and I decided one-day to profane the holy Eucharist. So, I march into a holy Mass and go through all of the hoops. Holy Communion time arrives. I decide maybe I’ll curse Christ as I am grasping His Chalice. I decide to curse the chalice even.

    What happens to the chalice now that it has been desecrated? How is anyone assured chalices and ciboriums are being desecrated. How many chalices and ciboriums are in actuality no longer consecrated because of evil action?

    I might be jumping through a peculiar situation because of holy fear of the sacred vessels. I hardly can bring myself to step into a church building beyond the last few pews nevermind grasping at equality with God.

  29. Lurker 59 says:

    Jhayes, even though it is normative in the Archdiocese of Baltimore for CUBK, it is important to note that normative does not mean “in the majority of cases” but this is rather the standard which is being sought after universally for all parishes. When we look at what should be a normative Mass in the Archdiocese of Baltimore, I am sure that you would agree that it is to be considered normative that there would be enough ordinary ministers so that EMHC would not be needed ~ after all this is the universal norm for the Church and why EMHC are extraordinary after all. When a Mass in the Archdiocese of Baltimore is not normative by not having enough ordinary ministers, then the norm of CUBK for the Archdiocese is superseded by those Universal Norms that deal with how distribution of Holy Communion needs to function in non-normative situations. Whether or not this is actually the case in the Archdiocese, I do not know.

    Summary:

    1.) Universal Norms state that the diocesan bishop can determine if CUBK or CUOK is normative for that diocese.

    2.) The Archdiocese of Baltimore had determined that CUBK is normative.

    3.) When a Mass is not normative, here lacking the number of ordinary ministers, the Universal Norms kick in.

    4.) The Universal Norms do not envision the desire for CUBK to be a legitimate reason for EMHC (see my post above.) The only combination of instances that allow for CUBK with EMHC is when CUBK is normative and there are a normative amount of healthy ordinary ministers to have CUBK but at the particular Mass there happens to be an extraordinary amount of communicants that the distribution would be unduly prolonged. However, in this case the Universal Norms suggest for the pastor to limit the OMHC and EMHC to CUOK (RS 102, )

    Also I want to offer a clarification to your post to FrAWeidner that some might misunderstand. The Archdiocese of Baltimore is not discouraging intinction for any reason other than a pastoral concern for some individuals that have gluten allergies. The full quote is

    In addition, given the large number of individuals with gluten sensitivity, the transfer of even a small amount of bread to the wine could pose a serious health risk for some. Therefore, distribution by intinction ought not be used in the Archdiocese of Baltimore; and it may never be used as the sole method of distribution.

    Further that statement by the Archdiocese cannot be understood as a ban on intinction as, Redemptionis Sacramentum specifically does not allow for the Bishop to prevent the usage of intinction. As regards the administering of Communion to lay members of Christ’s faithful, the Bishops may exclude Communion with the tube or the spoon where this is not the local custom, though the option of administering Communion by intinction always remains. RS 103

  30. jhayes says:

    Lurker59 said

    I am sure that you would agree that it is to be considered normative that there would be enough ordinary ministers so that EMHC would not be needed ~ after all this is the universal norm for the Church and why EMHC are extraordinary after all.

    Sorry, I don’t agree with that. RS102 says that the Chalice shall not be offered to the laity “wherever there is not an adequate number of sacred ministers or extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion with proper formation….” it doesn’t require that there be enough “sacred ministers” to do without EMHCs.

    As a practical matter, I can’t think of any Sunday Mass I’ve attended since RS was issued where there were not EMHCs involved in the distribution of the Eucharist – whether under one or both kinds. I think the likelihood of my finding future OF Masses without EMHCs is about zero.

  31. jhayes says:

    Lurker 59 said

    Further that statement by the Archdiocese cannot be understood as a ban on intinction as, Redemptionis Sacramentum specifically does not allow for the Bishop to prevent the usage of intinction. As regards the administering of Communion to lay members of Christ’s faithful, the Bishops may exclude Communion with the tube or the spoon where this is not the local custom, though the option of administering Communion by intinction always remains. RS 103

    I believe the reference to “Bishops” is to a national council of Bishops (in the USA, the USCCB), so the USCCB couldn’t make a nationwide ban on intinction. I assume the Archbishop of Baltimore believes that he can ban it in his own diocese under GIRM 283. Whether that is correct, I don’t know – but I suppose the practical question is whether any of his priests would challenge him on it.

  32. frpfarley says:

    Each mass at my parish has 200-800 communicants daily and On Sundays, respectively. Would it be faulty reasoning to assume that the norms laid out in the GIRM would direct me to not offer the chalice due to a large number of communicants?
    In my humble opinion, the norms laid out by Bishop Olmsted come from a humble man desiring to be faithful. Why is it that anyone; priests included, would assume otherwise?
    Secondly, a statement… Priests should explain to the faithful that the practice is out of step with the direction of the General Instruction. There will be pressure from some to ” give me what I want” but we will live through it. The doctrine of concomitance is clear and is De Fide. The prayer said by the priest during exposition of the Blessed Sacrament is clear. One species at mass does not deprive anyone of anything essential

  33. FrAWeidner says:

    Jhayes said, “I think the likelihood of my finding future OF Masses without EMHCs is about zero.”

    You should visit my parish (I’m the vicar, not the pastor). All OF, Communion rail used at every Mass, one EMHC used at the 5:00 p.m. Saturday Mass, EMHCs otherwise used solitarily for weekend Communion calls. Priests and deacon distribute Communion at all other Masses. CUOK the norm. Intinction used at high feast days.

  34. B Knotts says:

    To those who have cited RS 102, I answer with RS 151:

    Only out of true necessity is there to be recourse to the assistance of extraordinary ministers in the celebration of the Liturgy. (emphasis mine) Such recourse is not intended for the sake of a fuller participation of the laity but rather, by its very nature, is supplementary and provisional. Furthermore, when recourse is had out of necessity to the functions of extraordinary ministers, special urgent prayers of intercession should be multiplied that the Lord may soon send a Priest for the service of the community and raise up an abundance of vocations to sacred Orders.

    Since we receive the whole Christ, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity, in the Eucharist in either form, how can there be a “necessity” to distribute under both Kinds?

  35. jhayes says:

    FrAWagner said “Priests and deacon distribute Communion at all other Masses.”

    It’s the plural priests that make that possible. I grew up in a pre-Vatican II suburban parish that had six priests living in the rectory. As many priests as needed would come out to assist the celebrant in dsitributing Communion. It would be great if that were still possible in all churches, but in most parishes I have attended there is only one priest (and no deacon) at any Mass, so EMHCs are needed unless it is a very small church.

  36. JohnW says:

    At my parish we have two Priest and three Deacons. We never ever have one of the other clergy come in to help distribute communion. We always have Eight EM’s assisting one priest. We need many prayers for a true reform. Let us pray to Our Lady for our Holy Father to correct VATICAN II, or should I say the resulys of Vatican II.

  37. faithandfamily says:

    While it was interesting reading all the points raised in this discussion, after reading the letter from the Secretariat of Divine Worship of the USCCB, my desire for EF Masses and Communion Rails has been raised to an even higher level. I grow so weary of “conditions” that have left so much room for misinterpretation and which have led to such lack of reverence for the Eucharist.