I recently became a eucharistic minsiter at my parish and i have one question. I am going to to 5pm mass this evening and will be getting the eucharist put into my pyx so i can take it to a shut in on sunday (so the next day). Is it against canon law for me to keep the eucharist in my pyx overnight at my house? because i am only albe to go to the shut in's house on sundays. The bishops office is closed and my pastor gave an unclear answer when i called him today. thank you!
First, unless you are a priest, you are not a Eucharistic Minister. You are an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion.
From Catholic Doors Ministry.
A. 1. No!
Hi, Braedan! Thanks for being willing to reach out to those who are unable to attend Mass and bring them Communion!
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I am going to to 5pm mass this evening and will be getting the eucharist put into my pyx so i can take it to a shut in on sunday (so the next day). Is it against canon law for me to keep the eucharist in my pyx overnight at my house? because i am only albe to go to the shut in's house on sundays.
Although you're only able to get to the person's house on Sunday, I'm assuming that you're able to get to Church on both Saturday and Sunday. Therefore, go to Mass on Saturday and receive the Eucharist yourself, personally, but don't take your pyx with you. Then, on Sunday, prior to your visit to the person's house, go to Church and get a host and take it straight over to them. You might need to arrange the time of your visit so that it doesn't conflict with your parish's Mass schedule (i.e., if there's Mass at 9am, don't say "I'll be there at 9:30", since that would require you to walk into church in the middle of Mass and try to get Communion from the tabernacle! instead, if there's Mass at 9am, ask the person "can I visit at 10 or 10:30, right after the 9am Mass?")...
[133.] A Priest or Deacon, or an extraordinary minister who takes the Most Holy Eucharist when an ordained minister is absent or impeded in order to administer it as Communion for a sick person, should go insofar as possible directly from the place where the Sacrament is reserved to the sick person’s home, leaving aside any profane business so that any danger of profanation may be avoided and the greatest reverence for the Body of Christ may be ensured. Furthermore the Rite for the administration of Communion to the sick, as prescribed in the Roman Ritual, is always to be used.
I would simply attend Sunday mass, so as to have no worries.
If someone, like a parish priest, believes you should be keeping the Blessed Sacrament in your home then they believe you should have a tabernacle there. So the procedure for getting a tabernacle in your home should be begun by you, if that is what you want. Until you have an approved tabernacle I doubt the circumstances exist to justify you keeping the Blessed Sacrament at home overnight.
From the Code of Canon Law: "Can.* 935 No one is permitted to keep the Eucharist on one’s person or to carry it around, unless pastoral necessity urges it and the prescripts of the diocesan bishop are observed." More is at vatican.va/archive/ENG1104/_P3C.HTM .
The current General Instruction of the Roman Missal refers the 1938 Instruction Nullo Unquam Tempore as a footnote after this sentence: "317. In no way should any of the other things be forgotten which are prescribed by law concerning the reservation of the Most Holy Eucharist."
The tone of this 1938 document is quite severe, for example:
"10. The Sacred Congregation is not unaware that the aforesaid cautions will not fully secure their object, unless their Lordships the Bishops and local Ordinaries, while enjoining their observance on Parish Priests, Rectors of Churches, Moderators of Institutes of all sorts, and superioresses of nuns, also keep the following four most important points in view.
(a) Especially during diocesan visitations, but also even outside of such visitations, as often as a case demands it, they should either personally or through suitable and prudent ecclesiastics, diligently inquire and secure ocular knowledge of the provision made for the safe-keeping of the Blessed Sacrament, not only in each parish, but also in each church or oratory which enjoys this right. As often as they find out that something is wanting in the safeguards rightly required, they must order them to be made good at once, a short time limit being given, under penalty of a pecuniary fine, or even suspension in the case of priests, or removal, according to the gravity of their negligence, to be incurred by those who have the duty of supplying all means of security."
The full document is at romanrite.com/nullo.html .
It is not allowed. Go to Mass on Sunday; receive the host in your pyx and go directly to the house afterward. At my parish, the EM’s receive the pyx right after communion time and before the dismissal. The congregation says a brief prayer for those who will receive and the EM’s leave right away. Thank you for bringing Communion to the sick; I’m sure they look forward to it all week.