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The Proper way to receive Holy Eucharist - Answer

There is no short answer to this question, so bear with me.  According to the Ceremonies of the Modern Roman Rite (Peter J. Elliott) "The faithful may receive the eucharist kneeling or standing. They  may approach in a  "communion procession" and go to the celebrant and other minister of the Eucharist to receive standing...the Eucharist is also ministered in this way where it is the custom to kneel....When the faithful receive kneeling, no other sign of reverence towards the Blessed Sacrament is required, since kneeling is itself a sign of adoration.  When they receive communion standing, it is strongly recommended that, coming up in procession, they should make a sign of reverence before receiving the sacrament. This should be done at the right time and place, so that the order of people going to and from Communion is not disrupted...The person immediately behind the one receiving the Eucharist makes the reveernce while he or she is receiving the Lord." (Hint: bow, genuflect, sign yourself).

As each communicant approaches the celebrant raises the Host over the paten or ciborium and says "The Body of Christ." The communicant responds, "Amen" and receives the Sacrament, choosing either to receive directly into the mouth or on the palm of the left hand. (Note no grabbing or pinching as this could fracture the host. In addition Christ is always given and never taken!!)

"In ministering the chalice... As they hand the chalice to the communicant, they say, "The Blood of Christ."  The communicant responds "Amen" and drinks from the chalice. Again the cup is given not grabbed.

And lastly, ..."self-intinction is not permitted, that is, when the faithful take a Host, dip into a chalice and then give themselves Communion...It is most desirable that the faithful, like the priest, receive the Body of the Lord from Hosts consecrated at the same Mass, and that they should share the chalice when permitted...Through these signs, Communion will stand out more clearly as sharing in the Sacrifice that is actually being offered."

 

Thanks for the questions and I hope I have answered your questions satisfactorily. Please forgive any typos. Please keep the questions coming.


Fr. Reggie

Comments

Patty R.  |  United States  |  September 8, 2013  |  12:25 PM

Hi Father,

Thank-you. I was surprised by the answer to this question. I always thought that the signs of reverence were preformed after receiving the Body of the Lord.

My question has to do with saying the Lord's prayer during the Mass. The celebrant  has his arms outstretched palms up during the recitation. What is proper for the congregation? I have seen families joining hands, others hands folded in prayer and some also following the priest's action. Is there a correct stance or is it up to the individual?


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