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  #1  
Old Dec 28, '08, 8:32 am
78angie 78angie is offline
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Default proper handling of the consecrated hosts

What do you do when you find a consecrated host in church on the floor and there isn't a priest or person available to know what to do?
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  #2  
Old Dec 28, '08, 9:20 am
SuscipeMeDomine SuscipeMeDomine is offline
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Default Re: proper handling of the consecrated hosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by 78angie View Post
What do you do when you find a consecrated host in church on the floor and there isn't a priest or person available to know what to do?
The main thing you want to do is treat it with reverence and respect.

If someone were distributing communion and dropped the Sacred Host, normally he would pick it up and consume it. So if you would feel comfortable consuming the host, that would be one possibility.

If you don't want to consume it, the other thing that can be done is to allow it to dissolve in water so that it is no longer bread, then pour the water into the ground, perhaps in a flower bed where it won't be walked on.

Even if a priest isn't around at the time, I'd let him know afterward that you had found a host. It's something he should be aware of so that it can (hopefully) be avoided in the future.
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  #3  
Old Dec 28, '08, 2:37 pm
EvelynEVF EvelynEVF is offline
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Default Re: proper handling of the consecrated hosts

Please check the carpet for crumbs, too, and perhaps cover the spot with a piece of paper or whatever you have handy, so that the priest or whomever you tell, knows the exact location.

I read a fabulous book by a guy named Scott Cairns, who went on pilgrimage to Mt Athos (he's Greek Orthodox). Someone accidentally spilled the sacred species, and after his clothes were thoroughly gone over, they took his shoe away to burn, and they spread alcohol over the spot where he had been standing, and set it on fire. The story really grips me.

A touch hard to duplicate with our modern carpeted floors. . .
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  #4  
Old Dec 28, '08, 5:12 pm
Galnextdoor Galnextdoor is offline
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Default Re: proper handling of the consecrated hosts

How do you know it's consecrated?
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  #5  
Old Dec 28, '08, 6:32 pm
SuscipeMeDomine SuscipeMeDomine is offline
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Default Re: proper handling of the consecrated hosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Galnextdoor View Post
How do you know it's consecrated?
Since you can't tell by looking at it, I'd be cautious and assume that it is.
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  #6  
Old Dec 28, '08, 6:58 pm
Mattapoisett64 Mattapoisett64 is offline
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Default Re: proper handling of the consecrated hosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Galnextdoor View Post
How do you know it's consecrated?

Since the ciboria would normally be refilled in the sacristy, it would be reasonable to presume that a host found "in church on the floor" would be there because of an accident during distribution of Communion. Plus, I would think that respect for the Body of Christ would dictate that one should assume the host is consecrated and treat it accordingly.
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  #7  
Old Dec 28, '08, 9:28 pm
benedictgal benedictgal is offline
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Default Re: proper handling of the consecrated hosts

I serve as an EMHC at my parish. Last weekend, the diocesan director for adult religious education came to our parish for Mass. He was sitting in the overflow room that we also use for daily Mass. During the collection, he motioned for me to come and meet him in the vestibule. He told me that he saw a host in one of the small collection baskets that we use for daily Mass. Inasmuch as the basket was on the table where we place the container for the hosts (communicants put their hosts into the ciborrium if they are going to receive and the ciborrium and the wine cruet are brought up to the celebrant), I did not want to take any chances. I consumed the Host.

I would rather err on the side of caution than risk the possibility of further profaning Our Lord (if the Host in question had been consecrated).
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  #8  
Old Dec 28, '08, 9:34 pm
PaulAndrew83 PaulAndrew83 is offline
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Default Re: proper handling of the consecrated hosts

People in the catholic church today have no idea what to do because receiving Communion in the hand immunizes them from the sort of extreme care that used to be the behavior of the church.

[Source: May 1949 American Ecclesiastical Review]
This procedure requires that the spot on which the Sacred Host has fallen be purified, usually with a dampened purificator, and then scraped and the scrapings thrown into the sacrarium [small sink in sacristy that drains into ground under the church]. Authors, generally, in order to avoid delay in going on with the distribution of Holy Communion, interpret the fulfilment of the rubric to allow
marking the spot on which the Sacred Host has fallen, either with a linen cloth or with the plate used with the cruets, the priest returning after Mass to purify the place in the manner prescribed in
De defectibus.

Paul
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