Over at Stella Borealis there is a good, common-sensical post which has … well… good common sense. These things have been said here at WDTPRS before, but repetita iuvant!
The biggest abuse at almost every parish is the nearly 100% reception of Holy Communion by the congregation in parishes that have minuscule Confession opportunities and lines. [We don’t know it’s nearly 100%. Let’s call it, 99%.]
I would think that the Communion Fast from food before reception should be increased from one hour to three hours. [To help move people’s perception away from the mistake that Communion is “fast food”.] This would make it much more likely that many parishioners would not be able to keep the fast and if they were adequately catechized, they would not want to receive Communion. [And would give people a way to remain in the pew without worrying that others might think he is refraining because of sin. He could instead be refraining because of the fast.]
This requirement and that of being free from Mortal Sin should be announced by the celebrant immediately before Communion in every Mass for several years before the habit of sacrilegious reception can be minimized. [A similar announcement is generally given at Christmas and Easter Masses and at marriages and other events where large numbers of non-Catholics might be present].
Ushers should cease guiding communicants “row by row” up to the front. [Do I hear an “Amen!”?] Let them go up as they want, or don’t want. Then it won’t be so conspicuous if some don’t receive, putting an end to idle speculations as to which mortal sin ones neighbor or pew-mate had committed.
Confession opportunities must then be increased for parishioners to more than just 30-60 minutes before the Saturday Vigil Mass.
These common sense comments aim at reducing sacrilegious Communions by reducing both the perception that you must go to Communion just because you are there and also the psychological pressure to go even when you know you shouldn’t.
Making bad Communions, when you are not in the state of grace and you know it, is itself is deadly sin. You harm yourself and you harm everyone else. You place yourself in real danger of eternal separation from God.
“But Father! But Father!”, I can hear some of who whiners revving up. “Can you then explain…”
NO. This doesn’t need an explanation.
Go to confession.
If it is hard to go easily because the schedule is so sparse, then do it the hard way and go somewhere else. Car pool if you have to. Invite others to go. Can’t get out of the house for a legitimate reason of health, etc? Call the parish until someone pays attention.
Is it worth it to put it off? Really? For the love of God just TRY.
Priests/Bishops: If according to your means you don’t provide for the confessions of the people in your charge you will probably go to hell.
WDTPRS KUDOS to Stella Borealis for having his head screwed on in the right direction!