When you can’t receive Holy Communion: Go any way … or…

Here is a great shot of His Eminence Raymond Card. Burke in what appears to be the church of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in WI.

I picked this up from facebook


Louis [the child] was so sad that he couldn’t receive 1st Communion; he was in tears. When he said hi to Cardinal Burke, I explained to the Cardinal why he was sad and Louis just leaned into him and cried. His Eminence embraced him so lovingly and told him, “don’t worry, your first Communion will come soon enough!”
I love that Louis poured out his sorrow to him like the shepherd that Cardinal Burke is… so dear!


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  1. mamajen says:

    Awww…bless him. How sweet that he is so looking forward to it.

  2. JayDeee says:

    That’s wonderful. God bless them all.

    Happy Feast day of Jean-Marie Vianney, Father! Praying for you and all priests, every day.

  3. lsclerkin says:

    Oh my, but I do love being a Roman Catholic. :)

  4. letchitsa1 says:


  5. StJude says:

    awwww that is so sweet.

  6. theophilus says:

    That is beautiful

  7. JamesA says:

    What a shepherd, indeed. He is such a soft-spoken and gentle man and, like the Pontifex Emeritus, not at all the fire-breathing Pharisee his enemies make him out to be.
    Lord, send us more bishops like this !

  8. Steven Surrency says:

    Take this trash down! It must be wrong. Everyone knows Cardinal Burke is a mean old, legalistic traditionalist, too arrogant to speak to children. He hits kids with his crozier and whips them with his cappa magna. ;)

  9. Michael_Thoma says:

    How old is this little guy? IF he does understand that the Eucharist IS Jesus BBSD, why not allow him 1st Communion, or as in the East take ‘reason’ out of the equation entirely and leave him in the hands of Christ and his obviously pious parents?

  10. Caesar says:

    From what I understood of the same Facebook conversation, his older brother received his first communion and he was upset that it wasn’t his turn yet.

    Great photo! Cardinal Burke is an asset to the Church today!

  11. Liz says:

    This is so sweet! It made my day!

  12. Father Bartoloma says:

    right click… saved

    What a beautiful picture! Thanks for sharing.

  13. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Good things come to those who wait.

    But yeah, if kids are ready, pastors should be ready to be generous. Heck, everybody has First Communion on all different Sundays already, so having it when you’re little like St. Therese is not that strange.

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  15. I completely agree with Michael Thoma. Pope St. Pius X, among his other wonderful teachings and actions, was known to commune children as young as seven. This boy looks to be around six or thereabouts, and I think Pope St. Pius X would definitely commune him given how aware he seems of the Real Presence of Christ. The Eastern Catholic discipline (which is also the Patristic practice as well) of communing infants and young children by the precious Blood only is also a beautiful expression of ‘Let the little children come to me, and forbid them not, for of such is the Kingdom of Heaven.’

    Also, Cardinal Burke is my favorite Prince of the Western Church. He’s very much like Benedict XVI, and I was ‘rooting’ for him in the Papal conclave of earlier this year.

  16. pookiesmom says:

    What a wonderful shepherd is Cardinal Burke–my choice at the conclave also.

  17. tripudians says:

    AFAIK (and correct me if I’m wrong) CIC clearly states that whether a child is ready for 1st holy communion is is to be determined by the parents and their confessor. It doesn’t say anything about parish/diocesan policies…

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  19. Chuck Ludd says:

    Many “fear” that Cardinal Burke will be moved back to a see in the U.S. I pray that he is! What a wonderful thing it would be to have Cardinal Burke back in the U.S. as an archbishop — perhaps Chicago.

  20. bookworm says:

    Regarding St. Pius X: I once read an anecdote about him (might be apocryphal or an “urban legend”) that goes like this: A mother and child were attending Mass at St. Peter’s and when the time came for Communion, the mother brought the child up with her, but told the pope “Holy Father, he is not yet old enough to recieve.” The pontiff held up the Host before the child and asked him “Who is this?” The child said “That is Jesus.” The pontiff said “He’s old enough” and gave him his First Communion on the spot.

  21. ReginaMarie says:

    As I’ve posted before…

    “As a mother will not deny her children food until they understand what they eat, so too the Church will not deny the spiritual food of the Eucharist until a person understands.” (St. John Chrysostom)

    “That infant & children not yet come to the use of reason may not only validly but even fruitfully receive the Blessed Eucharist is now the universally received opinion.” (Council of Trent)

  22. Marc says:

    What an example this boy is to every Catholic! We should all desire the Eucharist the way he does!

  23. Supertradmum says:

    A parent can ask for early First Confession and early First Communion. My son was just over six when he made his First Communion. He was merely tested by the priest as to his understanding of basic Church doctrines, the basic prayers, and the meaning of the sacrament. Parents can ask. Of course, First Confession comes first, before First Holy Communion, as it did with my son.

  24. priests wife says:

    You would not believe the hurdles my siblings (Roman rite) have to jump to get sacraments for their children- for homeschooled youths, it is a two year ( two hours every Wednesday evening ) program to get First Communion. Guess who the teachers are? The homeschooling parents!
    As an above commenter said- the time for First Communion is decided by the parents and pastor/confessor….not the DRE (except unfortunately, their pastor refuses to do any case by case testing). Perhaps a two year program is important for those children whose parents are not serious about the faith (never married/divorced/remarried, not Sunday Mass goers, etc), but I assure you, by 4 or 5 years old, my nieces and nephews would passs any test a pastor was willing to give them. It is a shame.

  25. Acanthaster says:

    Wow, I know like 4 or 5 people in this picture…this is so great! Heading to the Shrine in La Crosse this afternoon, as well :) Such a beautiful place!

  26. HighMass says:

    Love this Holy Cardinal…..Had Prayed he be elected Pope In March 2013

  27. Jean Marie says:

    The man I hope and pray will be our future Pope.

  28. HighMass says:


    ME TO! The man I hope and pray will be our future Pope.

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  30. Mike says:

    Something like this happened to me when I was a kid. Not a bishop, just a parish priest. I never forgot it, and when I “reverted”, it was this kind of memory that pulled me back.

    This little guy is blessed.

  31. peraltr says:

    Cardinal Burke… Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum! (et multiplicat eum so that every Diocese can have one!)

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