There is a virus-like fixation pandemic in the Church today that everyone has to go to Communion at every Mass. Therefore, even if there are people present manifestly in living in a state of mortal sin, spectacular contortions of doctrine and law are pretzeled together to justify what has NEVER been justified in the history of the Church: saying openly that the unconfessed Catholic in the state of mortal sin who does not have a firm purpose of amendment can be admitted to the sacraments. If there is a mega-Mass, such as a papal Mass, astonishing lengths are attempted to get a Host out there to every single sincere and pious communicant, as well as the reacher-grabber and souvenir collector.
Of all the words I can think of to describe this, “reverent” isn’t one of them.
I don’t blame the unquestioning organizers… much. They are infected with this aforementioned virus. No… I guess I do blame them. They should know better.
Today I reminded that The Great One, His Eminence Robert Card. Sarah, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments (which covers how Mass should be celebrated, how to preserve its reverent character, its holiness, its power to communicate what the Perfect Communicator wants to give to the world) has remarked on mega-Masses.
From InfoVaticana comes this with my usual treatment (not my translation but touched up):
Cardinal Sarah denounces mega-masses “with thousands of attendees”
“Men and women in adultery and unbaptized tourists who participate in eucharistic celebrations of anonymous crowds can receive without distinction the Body and Blood of Christ.” This is the situation that warns Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, in his book The Force of Silence. [Also in SPANISH – HERE]
Cardinal Sarah emphasizes the need for the Church to study with urgency “the ecclesial and pastoral suitability of these multitudinous eucharistic celebrations with thousands of attendees.” For the Guinean cardinal, today there is an immense danger of converting the Eucharist “into a vulgar verbena [open-air dance]” and of desecrating the Body and Blood of Christ.
“The priests who distribute the sacred species without knowing anyone and give the body of Jesus to anyone, without distinguishing Christians from non-Christians, participate in the profanation of the Holy Eucharistic Sacrifice,” says in his book The Force of Silence. [The priest in large parishes can’t know every person who comes to Communion, but in that context it is often easy to tell who isn’t Catholic (by their behavior). But the situation of mega-Masses… well. Also, I note that Eastern congregations are often small enough that the priest can say people’s names as they present themselves for Communion.]
The prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship warns that “with some voluntary complicity,” those who exercise authority in the church are guilty of permitting the sacrilege and desecration of the Body of Christ “in those gigantic and ridiculous self-celebrations, where there are very few who realize that the death of the Lord is announced until he comes.”
Sarah also regrets that some “priests unfaithful to the memory of Jesus” insist more on the festive aspect of the Mass than on the bloody sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. [ANAXIOS!] “The importance of the interior dispositions and the necessity to reconcile with God accepting to allow us to be purified by the sacrament of the confession are no longer in fashion,” concludes the prelate.
I’m afraid that, for many – even for many priests and even bishops – Communion is now the moment we get the white thing in our hands and then we sing the song.
The “White Thing” is a sign that people like me here. Hence, if I can’t have the “White Thing” before we sing the song, I don’t feel good about myself in this setting… and that’s bad. The “White Thing” in the hand is the token that this is a “safe space”.
The moderation queue is ON.
Just as a reminder, here’s Communion at a mega-Mass in Manila in 2015 during Pope Francis’ visit.
Distribution from plastic cups at Rio for Pope Francis’s World Youth Day Mass 2013.