ASK FATHER: Holy Communion after biting inside of mouth

From a reader…


I write today to ask whether there are any problems with partaking of Communion after having bitten/chewed the inside of one’s own mouth.

First, I am glad that you are so interested in proper reception of Holy Communion.

We have to be properly disposed to receive. Because we are both body and soul, we have to be disposed in body and in soul, both. To be properly disposed in respect to our bodies we fast for the length of time designated by the Church. Right now that length of time is ridiculously short, but that’s what we have to obey. We can chose to do more, but that’s up to the individual… without grandstanding like the Pharisee in the parable.

Now… since we are Unreconstructed Ossified Manualists to the MANUAL!

In one of my manuals I read that consumption of food or liquid such that it breaks the fast must done by eating or drinking in a way by which one intends to eat or drink.  St. Alphonsus and St. Thomas are the basis.  Hence, if one breathes or swallows something like wood shavings, snow, etc., or – and this is to the point in question – blood flowing in the mouth from cheek, tongue, gums, etc., and swallowed with saliva, does not break the fast.   Moreover, we can brush our teeth and gargle.  Cooks who must prepare meals can even taste tiny amounts of food during its preparation.

I found one interesting note:

“Sale a catechumenis in collocatione Baptismi praegustato etsi ieiunium frangi videatur, adhuc tamen nullum dubium est quin ad sacram communionem susceptio Baptismate admitti possint, imo vero debeant…”.

Fascinating, no?

In any event, yes, you can receive Communion if you have bitten the inside of your cheek, etc.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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One Comment

  1. DeltaEchoBravo says:

    Good to know, many thanks!

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