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  #1  
Old Apr 30, '12, 10:03 am
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CHRISTINE77 CHRISTINE77 is offline
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Default First Communion

Yesterday children at our church celebrated their First Communion - such a precious sight! I know this ceremony is always held in the Spring, but is there a particular day for it? Is it always between Easter and Pentecost, and does any one know the whys and wherefores of this tradition?
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  #2  
Old Apr 30, '12, 10:12 am
Mrs Sally Mrs Sally is offline
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Default Re: First Communion

Someone smarter will undoubtedly post, but my guess is that the specific date is left up to the Pastor. We have enough children receiving FHC that there are several Masses dedicated to this outside of the regualr Mass schedule!
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Old Apr 30, '12, 10:12 am
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Chatter163 Chatter163 is offline
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Default Re: First Communion

Because classes tend to run according to a school year format, first communion tends to be a rite of late spring.
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Old Apr 30, '12, 10:13 am
PatriceA PatriceA is offline
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Default Re: First Communion

Might have something to do with the fact that the children have also completed a full year of faith formation to be able to receive the sacrament.
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Old Apr 30, '12, 10:33 am
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CHRISTINE77 CHRISTINE77 is offline
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Default Re: First Communion

I thought it might have something to do with the Easter Season. We had infant baptisms the week prior.
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Old Apr 30, '12, 11:13 am
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Aelred Minor Aelred Minor is offline
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Default Re: First Communion

In baptism we are buried with Christ and rise with Him to new life. It's a resurrection symbol (and efficacious sacrament, of course). That makes the Easter season particularly suitable for baptism. Indeed, in both the early Church and today Lent was a time for new converts to prepare to receive the sacraments of initiation, and Easter the time to receive them.

Now, in the case of young children born into Latin Rite Catholic families, we now usually separate the sacraments of initiation and even sometimes switch around the traditional order of Confirmation and First Communion (putting First Communion first, though for adult converts it's still third). Also, because of the precariousness of life it makes sense not to always wait until Easter to baptize a baby. However, it still makes sense to retain some unity between the other sacraments of initiation and Easter.
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Old Apr 30, '12, 7:00 pm
Phemie Phemie is offline
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Default Re: First Communion

Quote:
Originally Posted by CHRISTINE77 View Post
Yesterday children at our church celebrated their First Communion - such a precious sight! I know this ceremony is always held in the Spring, but is there a particular day for it? Is it always between Easter and Pentecost, and does any one know the whys and wherefores of this tradition?
It is not always between Easter and Pentecost, although that is a time recommended by Redemptionis Sacramentum. It is usually on Sunday, although I remember that First Communions in my day were not usually at Sunday Mass but at a special Mass during the week (that was in the early 60s), same as Confirmation.

This is what Redemptionis Sacramentum says:
Quote:
[87.] The First Communion of children must always be preceded by sacramental confession and absolution. Moreover First Communion should always be administered by a Priest and never outside the celebration of Mass. Apart from exceptional cases, it is not particularly appropriate for First Communion to be administered on Holy Thursday of the Lordís Supper. Another day should be chosen instead, such as a Sunday between the Second and the Sixth Sunday of Easter, or the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, or the Sundays of Ordinary Time, since Sunday is rightly regarded as the day of the Eucharist.
I know more than one parish where First Communion and Mothers' Day are as entertwined as ivy and lattice. Having been there, I know that little thought is given to the fact that Mothers' Day falls during the Easter season. It's just a good day for a special event in the parish.

In the days when our diocese celebrated Confirmation and First Communion in the same ceremony, we had our celebration any time that the Bishop could be in the parish. That was in April in some years and not until September in others.

Last edited by Phemie; Apr 30, '12 at 7:11 pm.
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Old Apr 30, '12, 11:16 pm
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figs figs is offline
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Default Re: First Communion

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Originally Posted by Phemie View Post
It is not always between Easter and Pentecost, although that is a time recommended by Redemptionis Sacramentum. It is usually on Sunday, although I remember that First Communions in my day were not usually at Sunday Mass but at a special Mass during the week (that was in the early 60s), same as Confirmation.
I remember it that way too I can't remember exactly what day my FHC was (too long ago lol) but I clearly remember it was not on a Sunday
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