Catholic FAQ


Latest Threads
newest posts



Go Back   Catholic Answers Forums > Forums > Liturgy and Sacraments
 

Welcome to Catholic Answers Forums, the largest Catholic Community on the Web.

Here you can join over 400,000 members from around the world discussing all things Catholic. Membership is open to all, Catholic and non-Catholic alike, who seek the Truth with Charity.

To gain full access, you must register for a FREE account. Registered members are able to:
  • Submit questions about the faith to experts from Catholic Answers
  • Participate in all forum discussions
  • Communicate privately with Catholics from around the world
  • Plus join a prayer group, read with the Book Club, and much more.
Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free. So join our community today!

Have a question about registration or your account log-in? Just contact our Support Hotline.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search Thread Display
  #1  
Old Aug 27, '11, 8:19 pm
GwenL GwenL is offline
Regular Member
Radio Club Member
Forum Supporter
 
Join Date: September 14, 2009
Posts: 625
Religion: Roman Catholic
Default Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Not purifying. I'm not asking about purifying. I know that only Deacons and Priests may purify the vessels after Mass, and that's how it's done at our parish.

My question is about cleaning the vessels after the purification. At our parish, the sacristans may do this. My question is, what kind of soap do people use? We have gold-plated cups, chalices, and ciboria. I'm more concerned about the cups--they will naturally get the most cleaning. Is there a specific soap that people use? I've heard that regular dish soap (such as palmolive, ivory, etc.) can be too harsh and can cause pitting. But this may be an urban legend. I've also been told that regular dish soap can be too harsh for inset jewels and the exterior surface of chalices and cups. I'm at a cathedral, and our bishop has a gorgeous chalice with inset jewels. I don't want to be the one to explain to him why it's a mess....

None of our sacristans seem to know. For several years, EMHCs were incorrectly purifying the sacred vessels after Mass. Our new rector put a stop to that on his first day here. But nobody has been cleaning the cups, especially after daily Mass (after the priest purifies them). I think that previous EMHCs and sacristans got the two mixed up, that is, they confused "purifying" and "cleaning." and thought they were doing both.

Thanks in advance for your help.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old Aug 27, '11, 8:50 pm
Vico's Avatar
Vico Vico is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 27, 2008
Posts: 7,012
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Our Lady Star of the Sea (Michigan) has in their Handbook:

"Using hot water with soap, wash all chalices, ciboria, and tray, paying special attention to the rims of the chalices. Just rinse the wine cruet and water cruet without using soap."

http://ourladystar.ehost.com/sitebui...files/emhc.pdf
__________________

Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old Aug 27, '11, 9:22 pm
beckers's Avatar
beckers beckers is offline
Regular Member
Forum Supporter
 
Join Date: December 20, 2004
Posts: 3,080
Religion: Catholic-Anglican Use
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Hot water for the first step as you don't want to use soap in the special sink that goes to the ground.

We use dawn I believe but we don't put the whole chalice in there. The bottom of our chalice looks like it is one piece but its not and water can get in and damage the inside. We just fill the sink with hot water and soap and clean the inside and rims and then rinse again in hot water. You just really really need to dry them well to make sure the water drops don't set and to make sure no damage is being done.

Good to hear that you guys are doing it right!!
__________________
As for Pelosi, Chaput called her a gifted public servant of strong convictions and many professional skills. Regrettably, knowledge of Catholic history and teaching does not seem to be one of them.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old Aug 27, '11, 9:22 pm
jpjd jpjd is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: February 2, 2005
Posts: 2,004
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Ditto what Vico said. That is exactly what w do, right down to paying special attention to the rim of the cup and rinse the cruets without using soap.

We use liquid Ivory dish soap and hot water. I think the soap is mild and will not harm the gold. The key is to be gentle -- no abrasive rubbing, and do not immerse the entire chalice in water.
__________________
Assume positive intent.
_____________________

Support the expectation of dressing respectfully for Mass (for those who are able to but do not, referring to dressing with respect, not finery.) Give God better than the least you can do.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old Aug 27, '11, 9:55 pm
surritter surritter is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: November 13, 2008
Posts: 2,000
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Man, I'm kinda jealous of a parish where only the priest or deacon does the purifying, and they even use the proper term EMHC rather than "Eucharistic Minister"! Would that my parish could get that far...
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old Aug 27, '11, 11:15 pm
Saburo Saburo is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: July 1, 2011
Posts: 279
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

You wouldn't be able to put your bare hand in something capable of causing pits in gold. Mild dish soap is fine. Don't knock the jewels loose against the side of a sink.

If your church has a chalice that is two pieces and not water tight, a custom jeweler may be able to solder the joints to allow you to immerse the vessel. It doesn't cost anything to ask.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old Aug 27, '11, 11:40 pm
EasterJoy EasterJoy is offline
Forum Elder
 
Join Date: March 26, 2008
Posts: 15,814
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by Saburo View Post
You wouldn't be able to put your bare hand in something capable of causing pits in gold. Mild dish soap is fine. Don't knock the jewels loose against the side of a sink.

If your church has a chalice that is two pieces and not water tight, a custom jeweler may be able to solder the joints to allow you to immerse the vessel. It doesn't cost anything to ask.
That is true of pure gold, but not necessarily true of gold alloys. While those might not literally dissolve in the wrong cleaning solution, they could discolor. But you're right, a mild dish soap ought to be fine.

The main thing with gold is to avoid unnessary abrasion. Gold is very difficult to dissolve, but it can be plated on very thinly and it scratches if you look at it crossways. I have seen many chalices that were scratched through to the base metal from which the chalice was cast. So be careful about what you used to rub the soap around with, and be gentle about it.

Oh, and for some reason we've found it necessary to tell people to carry no more than one vessel to a hand and not to stack them, no matter what metal they're made from. Even if ciboria are made with lids and bottoms so it is clear they are meant to be stacked, that means they may be stacked in the tabernacle. Don't stack them while carrying them, even if empty, unless they have a soft cloth between them. They do scratch each other.

Last edited by EasterJoy; Aug 27, '11 at 11:59 pm.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old Aug 27, '11, 11:43 pm
ElToro ElToro is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: May 25, 2011
Posts: 755
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by GwenL View Post
Not purifying. I'm not asking about purifying. I know that only Deacons and Priests may purify the vessels after Mass, and that's how it's done at our parish.

My question is about cleaning the vessels after the purification. At our parish, the sacristans may do this. My question is, what kind of soap do people use? We have gold-plated cups, chalices, and ciboria. I'm more concerned about the cups--they will naturally get the most cleaning. Is there a specific soap that people use? I've heard that regular dish soap (such as palmolive, ivory, etc.) can be too harsh and can cause pitting. But this may be an urban legend. I've also been told that regular dish soap can be too harsh for inset jewels and the exterior surface of chalices and cups. I'm at a cathedral, and our bishop has a gorgeous chalice with inset jewels. I don't want to be the one to explain to him why it's a mess....

None of our sacristans seem to know. For several years, EMHCs were incorrectly purifying the sacred vessels after Mass. Our new rector put a stop to that on his first day here. But nobody has been cleaning the cups, especially after daily Mass (after the priest purifies them). I think that previous EMHCs and sacristans got the two mixed up, that is, they confused "purifying" and "cleaning." and thought they were doing both.

Thanks in advance for your help.
If you want to take really good care of the vessels use natural sponges and a soap like Ivory (not a detergent.) Extremely soft towels to dry. No one should ever clean vessels while wearing rings -- diamonds scratch horribly.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old Aug 28, '11, 1:25 am
Petergee Petergee is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: July 24, 2005
Posts: 3,438
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by GwenL View Post
We have gold-plated cups, chalices, and ciboria. I'm more concerned about the cups--they will naturally get the most cleaning. .
Cups? What cups?
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old Aug 28, '11, 11:23 am
fall fox fall fox is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: February 1, 2009
Posts: 214
Religion: Roman Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by GwenL View Post
Not purifying. I'm not asking about purifying. I know that only Deacons and Priests may purify the vessels after Mass, and that's how it's done at our parish.

My question is about cleaning the vessels after the purification. At our parish, the sacristans may do this. My question is, what kind of soap do people use? We have gold-plated cups, chalices, and ciboria. I'm more concerned about the cups--they will naturally get the most cleaning. Is there a specific soap that people use? I've heard that regular dish soap (such as palmolive, ivory, etc.) can be too harsh and can cause pitting. But this may be an urban legend. I've also been told that regular dish soap can be too harsh for inset jewels and the exterior surface of chalices and cups. I'm at a cathedral, and our bishop has a gorgeous chalice with inset jewels. I don't want to be the one to explain to him why it's a mess....

None of our sacristans seem to know. For several years, EMHCs were incorrectly purifying the sacred vessels after Mass. Our new rector put a stop to that on his first day here. But nobody has been cleaning the cups, especially after daily Mass (after the priest purifies them). I think that previous EMHCs and sacristans got the two mixed up, that is, they confused "purifying" and "cleaning." and thought they were doing both.
Thanks in advance for your help.
Gwen, I think you are on the right track. My son is a Pharmisutical Engineer and we were talking about this very thing, we have a beautiful chalice that is only 4 or 5 years old. It is pitted. My son said that we would be better off if we were to wipe the edge with alcohol to eliminate any germs, then rince with distilled water. The distilled water has no minerals in it so it shouldn't spot. Either let them air dry or pat the water off with a real absorbant cloth. Don't rub, that can also take off plated gold a little at a time.
Your city water has minerals in it that can eventually pit also any kind of soap can do the same.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old Aug 28, '11, 11:29 am
fall fox fall fox is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: February 1, 2009
Posts: 214
Religion: Roman Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by surritter View Post
Man, I'm kinda jealous of a parish where only the priest or deacon does the purifying, and they even use the proper term EMHC rather than "Eucharistic Minister"! Would that my parish could get that far...
Perhaps you need to either get on the Liturgy Committee ir at least attend with documents you need to stress your point.Call or e-mail your Office of Worship and ask them to send or e-mail what you need to take to the Liturgy Committee. Be brave son.I know there are others in your parish that know tha it is being done improperly.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old Aug 28, '11, 12:45 pm
EasterJoy EasterJoy is offline
Forum Elder
 
Join Date: March 26, 2008
Posts: 15,814
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by Petergee View Post
Cups? What cups?
I think she means to distinguish between the sacred vessels used for administering the Precious Blood to the faithful from the main (and often more ornate) sacred vessel used by the priest at the elevation. Often, that main vessel alone is referred to as the chalice and the others are referred to as common cups or merely as cups. Since the Church uses the term "cup" rather than "chalice" in the Eucharistic prayers to translate the term for the vessel holding the Precious Blood , "cup" is not a demeaning or overly-common term for such a vessel.

In any event, it is useful to have the different terms in order to make it clear which vessel you mean. They're all noble and sacred vessels, but there is a difference.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old Aug 28, '11, 12:48 pm
EasterJoy EasterJoy is offline
Forum Elder
 
Join Date: March 26, 2008
Posts: 15,814
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by fall fox View Post
Gwen, I think you are on the right track. My son is a Pharmisutical Engineer and we were talking about this very thing, we have a beautiful chalice that is only 4 or 5 years old. It is pitted. My son said that we would be better off if we were to wipe the edge with alcohol to eliminate any germs, then rince with distilled water. The distilled water has no minerals in it so it shouldn't spot. Either let them air dry or pat the water off with a real absorbant cloth. Don't rub, that can also take off plated gold a little at a time.
Your city water has minerals in it that can eventually pit also any kind of soap can do the same.
Be careful about alcohol. I've always thought alcohol should be totally safe on metals, but we've found that if the EMHC use alcohol-based germicides immediately prior to touching the brass handrail to the sanctuary, it puts marks on the brass that are really hard to remove. I'm thinking that the same can also discolor gold cups, since those are usually plated with an alloy, and not 24-carat gold.

As an inorganic chemist, I'm wondering if the alcohol and/or soap doesn't dissolve the naturally-occurring chemicals out of our skin and that it is those acids or sulfur compounds are the real chemical culprits, rather than the alcohol or soap. Maybe the cleaning solutions aren't what is causing the problem.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old Aug 28, '11, 12:52 pm
surritter surritter is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: November 13, 2008
Posts: 2,000
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by fall fox View Post
Perhaps you need to either get on the Liturgy Committee ir at least attend with documents you need to stress your point.Call or e-mail your Office of Worship and ask them to send or e-mail what you need to take to the Liturgy Committee. Be brave son.I know there are others in your parish that know that it is being done improperly.
I am on the Worship Commission. This goes to show you how the buck really stops with the pastor, despite the input of a commission which is considered "advisory." My strategy in the parish is a little more subtle, and writing it to the bishop or marching to my pastor with the appropriate documents in hand will not be helpful, believe me (unless the violation were egregious, such using altar breads with honey as an ingredient).

See this other thread for an example of my strategy and how it has worked with my pastor.

I don't mean to paint too bad of a picture; our parish is following the norms in other regards. My point was that a parish that uses the term EMHC is showing excellent signs of fidelity to the Church, even in lesser matters. Hooray!
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old Aug 28, '11, 1:00 pm
EasterJoy EasterJoy is offline
Forum Elder
 
Join Date: March 26, 2008
Posts: 15,814
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Cleaning Sacred Vessels

Quote:
Originally Posted by surritter View Post
My point was that a parish that uses the term EMHC is showing excellent signs of fidelity to the Church, even in lesser matters. Hooray!
I used the terms extraordinary ministers and ordinary ministers, as a short-hand to refer to EMsHC and clergy, respectively, and one of our EMsHC had no idea what I was talking about. If a short-hand term is needed, I much prefer extraordinary minister or ordinary minister to eucharistic minister.

For an all-inclusive term, use I'd use minister of Holy Communion, I guess, but only when I specifically meant to include the clergy in what I was saying. Come to think of it, maybe "ordinary and extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion" is worth the extra breath!!
Reply With Quote
Reply

Go Back   Catholic Answers Forums > Forums > Liturgy and Sacraments

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search Thread
Search Thread:

Advanced Search
Display

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



Prayer Intentions

Most Active Groups
8257Meet and talk,talk talk
Last by: GLam8833
5018CAF Prayer Warriors Support Group
Last by: UpUpAndAway
4345Devotion to the Sorrowful Mother
Last by: lsbar
4029OCD/Scrupulosity Group
Last by: B79
3834SOLITUDE
Last by: tuscany
3570Let's empty Purgatory
Last by: RJB
3230Poems and Reflections
Last by: tonyg
3203Catholic Vegetarians & Vegans
Last by: memphian
3130Petitions Before the Blessed Sacrament
Last by: Amiciel
3048For seniors and shut- ins
Last by: tammany



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:15 pm.

Home RSS Feeds - Home - Archive - Top

Copyright © 2004-2014, Catholic Answers.