Catholic Church Not To Issue Liturgical Wine During Swine Flu Season

The head of the Catholic Church for the New York Metropolitan area (a bishop) has issued a statement to all parishioners and dioceses in NYC – the Sacramental wine that is usually served during mass will not be issued out of health concerns during this year’s swine flu (H1N1) season.

This mandate takes effect immediately. The period that this new policy takes effect starts today and will run from October 1, 2009 through March 31, 2010.

It is also recommended that parishioners receive the Eucharist in the hand rather than on the tongue. Though this is the method that is often prescribed by Church doctrine out of reverence for the body and blood of the Lord Jesus Christ — this suggestion is being made because it is believed to be a better hygienic practice.

Originally posted on Lockergnome.Com

Small correction. Liturgical wine MUST be used at every licit Mass.

The direction is just that it shouldn’t be SHARED with the faithful, which is optional anyway. And it isn’t wine any more at that point. :shrug: It’s the Eucharist.

We’ve also ceased offering Communion under both species and it has been recommended to the few who receive on the tongue that they should receive in the hand. Neither recommendation came from our Bishop who, in fact, restated how important it was to offer both species. He only asked that anyone who feels sick refrain from receiving from the Cup.

It never is. It’s the Precious Blood that is distributed during Holy Communion.

Do you have a reference for that? I don’t think that the Catholic Bishop would refer to the Precious Blood as “Sacramental wine”.

either the poster, or the source he is citing, has badly misrepresented the directives of the local bishop. The faithful will not share in the cup of the Precious Blood as long as the fear of passing the virus is present. The celebrating priest including concelebrants will continue to receive both the Body and Blood of Christ as is required for a licit sacrifice. In any case there is never any requirement for the faithful to receive under the form of the Precious Blood, although in some dioceses permission to do so is routinely granted.

I couldn’t find anything to corroborate this. It’s not mentioned on the Press Releases for the Archdiocese or any place else on their website, current blog for the Archbishop etc.

Try to check your facts before you throw just any old thing up on a message board that might confuse someone.

To all my friends who posted a reply – Thank you.

Some of the points made in these responses were about facts and the validity of the post…

  1. These facts are true and accurate. I was present when the announcement was made by a Monsignor during mass on October 1, 2009.
  2. This was not a confusing directive: no consecrated wine will be issued from October 1, 2009 - March 31, 2010 because of the Swine Flu pandemic [empahsis mine].
  3. I do not have an online source. Send me a PM if you require more information to corroborate the details and I’ll be happy to send you in the right direction to get more information. I.E. Proof if you need it. Or, ask your local Parishoner in NYC or call the Diocese in Brooklyn, NY.

These statements are true and accurate. As I am bound and prohibited from breaking the commandments of the Lord God – I swear it under penalty or punishment for disobedience.

If I get more information or the policy gets rescinded – I will update the postings.

I don’t understand this recommendation that I’ve heard from a few dioceses. So, we shake everyones hand, possibly hold hands during the Pater Noster – and then without washing touch something (the Eucharist) and then stick it in our mouths. And this is better hygiene than taking a pair of dirty hands out of the equation?

In my parish, the Pastor has started making purell hand sanitizer available and its use necessary for the extraordinary ministers of holy Communion.

I still say that the best solution is intinction. :wink:

OK here might be the confusion. The diocese of Brooklyn in not the archdiocese of NY althought Brooklyn and Queends are part of NYC.

And again, I think this whole swine flu scare is little more than fear-mongering. You’d think that half the world had already died of it and the other half a step away from death themselves. :shrug:

There should be no confustion about the policy. The policy is very clear. The Bishop who made the directive available to be read during mass was not named at my Church – that’s all.

Taking the Eucharist in the hand is optional. If you’re disabled and cannot receive that way, I hope that will better explain that this method of receiveing Holy Communion is completely optional, nothing more.

It was mentioned that receivng this way is believed (at this time) to be a better hygienic practice. That was the statement from the Monsignor.

Take it in the hand, self communicate, chew. This is the current recommended method for receivng Holy Communion during the flu season. Yes, he did say, “chew.”

I wish there were more younger people at daily mass. If there were I’m sure the word would have gotten out sooner. Than people would not have to say, “check your facts.” For the safety of many of the elderly at mass I’m sure is part of the reason this policy has been enabled.

I’ve not heard this ever done before. Maybe someone else can share some insight.

A couple weeks ago at Mass our Pastor announced this same (no cup, host only) change with one addition; we will not be offering each other the Sign of Peace (handshake) either. He explained that health officials had contacted the diocese asking for their cooperation in trying to help avoid (not react to existing) a serious flu epidemic by minimizing, where we could, chances for spread of disease. The Bishop directed those changes for a period of a few months.

This is but part of a bigger plan in the event a serious outbreak (pandemic) occurs. You can read the whole plan here.

At the moment, we are following step 2 as a preventive measure.

I told you to check your facts because something as important as this would be on your diocesan website. Or the Diocesan newspaper. A Catholic source.As your fellow poster has given. You really should have something official to back it up so that others can know it is diocesan wide. Especially since the phrase “sacramental wine” was used.

Today in Mass (I was present) the announcement was given and reiterated as stated above. It will be announced again this Sunday (so be in Church). Sacramental Wine Will not be issued becuse of the Swine Flu.

Today it was reiterated that the recommended method for receiving Communion is in the hand.

If anbody has any doubts about this policy you are to “ask your local Parish Priest.”

This policy is in effect for the Diocese of Brooklyn and Queens in New York City as of this writing.

If any one wants to play Zacahariah with the truth than you might have to own up for disobedience. Today that might mean lack of e-mail for a while. :confused:

I also don’t understand the “no communion on the tongue” for sanitary reasons.

I have never had a priest touch my tongue when giving me communion. It’s not that hard. Maybe it’s a problem with EMHCs, but then, I don’t receive on the tongue from EMHCs.

One set of hands always has to touch the host, I don’t see how adding a second, which by definition haven’t been washed in a hour (during which time we’ve shaken hand, touched doorknobs, banisters and pews, dipped our fingers in holy water that’s used by 100’s of other, etc.) possibly helps.

God Bless

Our Priest explained today why they are concerned. This is what he said.

When the Priest gives a communicant the Host the tongue might be touched. They said it than can be possible to transfer the germ by touching another persons tongue in the receipient line on the way to the altar.

It seems to make sense.

This is what little I know about germs. Doorknobs, cars, pews – all those things though possible is not likely to make you sick. Your skin is a good defense for that. But when you ingest something or get it in the bloodstream; a pathogen is more than likely to double your chances of getting sick.

I have to agree with bilop, we KNOW our hands have touched numerous items. The Priests hand MIGHT touch a tongue. Doesn’t make sense to me.

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