Gluten Free Host

Does anyone else have to receive gluten free host? I am highly gluten intolerant so I cannot have regular the regular host because it would make me sick.

I received my first communion this Easter and now I receive the gluten free host each mass. I have to find either the priest or the sacristans (I think that’s what they are called) and ask for the gluten free host before mass and then when I go up to receive I have to ask for the GF host and the person has to walk back to the alter get my host and give it to me then go back up and get the regular host and come back down. This works well when I am in the priests line but sometimes I’m in another persons line and they get really confused. The guy today told me they didn’t have any and I tied to politely tell him it was on the alter but then the priest just stopped his line and went up and got it.

Receiving the Eucharist should be a joyous event but I feel like a huge inconvenience during the whole thing. People also always want to look up and see what the confusion is about and I feel like all eyes are on me and I’m not really comfortable with that.

Does anyone else have to go through this and is there a better way of going about it?


Hi, there.

Sounds like you’re doing fine, but you can keep this in mind:

Apologist Tim Staples from Catholic Answers Live has repeatedly noted on many episodes that the Real Presence is received when taking either the Body *or *the Blood–that is, either species satisfies receiving the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord.

When you cannot receive a gluten-free host, simply having the Blood satisfies the Eucharistic act. To be able to take both is simply a fuller symbol but not a requirement.

The Church specifies that a host must have some amount of Gluten in. However you do get LOW Gluten hosts, I’m not sure what percentage. If you can not tolerate even just a small amount of Gluten, then your best option is to only receive the Precious blood. Christ be with you

So what would I do when receiving the the blood? Just walk right by the person giving the host?

I think it’s correct that these would be low-gluten hosts, not gluten-free hosts. I know the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration in Clyde, Missouri make low-gluten hosts, and they have an interesting page about it here, with a discussion of how many hosts a person with Celiac would have to eat to be affected. (Or does the OP have a gluten allergy, which I guess is different?)

Yes, that’s exactly what you’d do, just like people who prefer not to receive the Blood, whether because they’re recovering alcoholics, or have a cold and don’t want to touch the cup, or whatever – just walk by. There was a thread here a couple of days ago about whether you should nod, or bow, or something as you go past.

Simply put, yes. You may feel inclined to make some sort of gesture of reverence – a bow of the head, say – as you walk by, but other than that, there’s nothing particular to do.

I would simply discuss it with the priest and ask him how he thinks you should proceed, it will help if you are able to go to the same Mass each week, sit in the same place, and try to receive first. When the two children we have are in church their families know to sit them with the choir so they receive first, problem is they don’t always attend and we are not always prepared for them, so if they come late, there is a bit of a shuffle. If you are first in line there is less chance the priest will have particles of higher-gluten hosts on his hand. If you are travelling you will probably have to ask for some unconsecrated hosts to carry with you, and find time to speak to the priest before Mass to explain. carry some of the packaging material to verify they are acceptable matter. Otherwise, simply step over to the minister with the chalice while the person in front of you is receiving the host.

Yes, my daughter has Celiac and she has been doing exactly that for years. She is not comfortable requesting the low gluten host because it does create a bit of disruption which draws attention to her. Like you, she doesn’t care for that.

She is now a sophomore in college. She was diagnosed at age 3. When it came time for her First Communion, I was incensed that the Chuirch was unwilling to acommodate this illness. In reality, the Church is powerless to change the ingredients in the bread. It must contain some gluten.

Through prayer, I came to the realization that Jesus loves my daughter a whole lot more than me. And, Our Lord died so that we may partake of the Eucharist. So, I gave myself over to Christ for a solution. My daughter was a bit of a germophobe as a child. I never thought she would drink from a cup others had used. She did and still does.

I wish you well and will pray for you…

God Bless.

At my Parish we (there are currently three of us) try to get to Mass early enough to let the Sacristan know so she can put the extra Chalice on the altar. Then we get in the end of the line for our Priest (visiting Priests are briefed by our Sacristans as to what is happening). He will then make sure no one has snuck in line behind us and then will go up to the Altar, put down the ciborium of hosts and bring down the special chalice and then we receive.

There will be a fourth soon. It is a good method for us.

An FYI, I missed Communion a couple of weeks ago because one of the girls who has Celiac was serving so I just assumed the special chalice was already on the altar. It was too late once I realized it wasn’t. We all also police ourselves so if one has a cold that person just doesn’t go.

Brenda V.

Hi. I am a sacristan and at our 10:30 mass we hvae two personnel who receive the low gluten (LG) hosts. I know how many to put out by the sheet the Lay Minister generates for the masses. She stated that those receiving the LG call her two days prior and let her know what mass they will be attending. When I see this on my mass sheet, I take out the LG before I handle the normal hosts. The LGs go on a seperate plate and are taken to the alter server table first to prevent contamination from normal hosts. Something you might want to think about (calling a couple of days prior), that way you aviod telling the sacristan during communion…hope this helps. :slight_smile:

I would just like to stress that you have a separate chalice consecrated for yourself. Not having one will result in people that have received the host contaminating the chalice. I think you can get for yourself a small chalice for your exclusive use.

I realize that we aren’t suppose to bring this up in this forum, but I’m just repeating what I heard in my EMHC training. Sometimes people will go through the communion line for a blessing, and then receive the precious blood from the chalice. Again, I’m not commenting on whether it’s a good idea or anything, just repeating what I’ve heard.

And I’m sure the OP means the low-gluten host, since ironically enough it seems to be better known as the “gluten free” host. The couple times I’ve seen it at our chapel, the priest knows that a person who needs a low gluten host is at the mass and knows who they are, and just does a quick switch (the ciborium for another paten or something) when that person comes up. We should never make it seem like it is an inconvenience for someone to receive the Body of Christ.

Some priests will ask you to come up early like when the EMHC’s come to the altar.
Really it is up to the Priest to make things go smoothly but somtimes things go wrong. Offer that discomfort up when that happens. You could make an appointment with the Pastor or write a letter expressing your concerns and asking if there was something you could do to make it go smoother.

Communicants with celiac disease or one of the other gluten allergies have several options. Please see the following church documents.

You could all receive if the person with the cold would go last. That works until more than one are sick. :slight_smile:


Before Mass, I put a LG host in a pix and place it on the altar. At communion time, Father hands me the pix.

So you self-communicate?

We offer low gluten hosts at every Mass. They’re made in Missouri.

This brings up an odd hypothetical: What does one do if they have both a severe gluten allergy and are recovering alcoholics (or for some other reason cannot have the Precious Blood)?

They could probably have a partial low gluten host if a partial regular host would cause symptoms. We have parishioners here who receive a quarter or half of a host from time to time. We do not have to receive every Sunday.

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