I am part of a group who visits local nursing homes every Sunday to administer Holy Communion. At the end of the Mass, the priest calls all the EMHC’s to the alter, where we receive our filled pyx. Then he says a short prayer over us and sends us off, as I’ve seen at many parishes.
However, there is one priest who regularly forgets and he basically relies on us to remind him. Basically, we just walk up to the alter uninvited, then he remembers and gives us our pyxes and the prayer. Many of the EMHC’s are very bashful about doing this, but reminding the priest has to be done or it will cause other problems. So by default, I have become the person in charge of leading this mob of EMHC’s to storm the alter at the end of Mass.
My question is: Specifically at what point of the Mass is the priest supposed to send the EMHC out to their ministry?
This is how the end of the Mass goes at my parish:
- Distribution of Holy Communion
- Short silence
- “After Communion prayer” lead by the priest
- Lector reads announcements
- Blessing and dismissal of the congregation
So, when do I storm the alter? Up until now, I just try to get there before the organist begins the recessional hymn, but on a few occasions, it has been almost disruptive. If I time this properly, it won’t add any more awkwardness than necessary.