Grape juice instead of wine


#1

I asked this question a couple weeks ago at Ask an Apologist, but really want an answer sooner than they are getting around to it.

We've started attending a parish on an Indian reservation. Instead of wine, grape juice is used for the sacrament. I know it's supposed to be wine, but is grape juice alloweed in certain situations? If it is invalid matter, does that mean the grape juice does not become the Blood of Christ? If it doesn't, I'll stick to the Body only.

And I'd like documents please, if possible, not just opinions. We have on hand the CCC, the Vatican II documents, many encyclicals, & the GIRM. I'm sure I could find anything else on-line as long as I have the name.

Thanks in advance!


#2

GIRM #322:

The wine for the celebration of the Eucharist must be from the fruit of the vine (cf. Lk 22:18), natural, and unadulterated, that is, without admixture of extraneous substances.

Are you certain that it’s grape juice?

Are you certain that it’s not mustum?


#3

The priest referred to it as grape juice. It is the “fruit of the vine” i.e. from grapes, it is natural, as far as I can tell nothing is added, except perhaps sugar - it tastes very sweet to me, like Welches. It just isn’t fermented - which I noticed wasn’t in the quote from the GIRM.

Someone I talked with suggested that it may be because alcoholism is so prevalent on reservations. I know the Cup does not have to be offered to the laity - don’t know why that option wasn’t chosen instead of going with grape juice.

I just need to know for myself if after Consecration it is actually the Blood of Christ. If not, I will abstain.


#4

[quote="Bonnie, post:3, topic:314284"]
The priest referred to it as grape juice. It is the "fruit of the vine" i.e. from grapes, it is natural, as far as I can tell nothing is added, except perhaps sugar - it tastes very sweet to me, like Welches. It just isn't fermented - which I noticed wasn't in the quote from the GIRM.

Someone I talked with suggested that it may be because alcoholism is so prevalent on reservations. I know the Cup does not have to be offered to the laity - don't know why that option wasn't chosen instead of going with grape juice.

I just need to know for myself if after Consecration it is actually the Blood of Christ. If not, I will abstain.

[/quote]

You really need to be asking your priest this question.

He may have just said "grape juice" because most people would not know what "mustum" is. And, FWIW, the mustum that is available from the winery where my parish purchases it's wine does look & taste just like Welches grape juice, except it's a little cloudier.


#5

[quote="Bonnie, post:3, topic:314284"]
The priest referred to it as grape juice. It is the "fruit of the vine" i.e. from grapes, it is natural, as far as I can tell nothing is added, except perhaps sugar - it tastes very sweet to me, like Welches. It just isn't fermented - which I noticed wasn't in the quote from the GIRM.

Someone I talked with suggested that it may be because alcoholism is so prevalent on reservations. I know the Cup does not have to be offered to the laity - don't know why that option wasn't chosen instead of going with grape juice.

I just need to know for myself if after Consecration it is actually the Blood of Christ. If not, I will abstain.

[/quote]

The best thing to do is talk to the priest. He may be saying 'grape juice' because he (wrongly) feels it will calm any 'worries'. He may be referring to mustum, which is permitted on rare occasions and is, in any case, still wine and not simply Welch's grape juice.

The wine must be wine; it cannot be simply 'grape juice'. The technique for achieving grape juice was NOT AVAILABLE until relatively recently in history; any grapes which were pressed in Christ's time would NEVER have become simply 'juice'. they would ALWAYS have become wine.

Talk to the priest. If he says it is juice and that he is 'allowed' to use it, then you'll need to address this with the bishop. But talk to the priest first and get all the story.


#6

[quote="Oneofthewomen, post:4, topic:314284"]
And, FWIW, the mustum that is available from the winery where my parish purchases it's wine does look & taste just like Welches grape juice, except it's a little cloudier.

[/quote]

I googled & found a 2004 thread where Peggy Frye responded to the same question. This is part of her answer:

Article II-C of Cardinal Ratzinger's letter describes mustum as "fresh grape juice from grapes, or juice preserved by suspending its fermentation (by means of freezing or other methods which do not alter its nature)." While several brands of grape juice are available commercially, not all varieties meet the requirements of mustum.

Any commercially produced grape juice whose fermentation process was arrested, even at a very early stage, may be used for mustum. However, those grape juices which have been pasteurized are not proper matter for Eucharist because such pasteurization removes even trace amount of alcohol produced in the natural fermentation process.

So I know anything at the grocery store (except perhaps Odwalla - do they have grape juice?) would be pasteurized. This priest is rather liberal (he's a Jesuit, after all ;)), I'm hesitant to talk with him because we've just started here & I hate making waves. I can be very bold writing, but not so much face-to-face. :(

He won't be here this Sunday, perhaps next week I can work up the courage. (When I was young & shy, I thought I would outgrow it. Now I'm old & shy. :()


#7

[quote="Bonnie, post:6, topic:314284"]
I googled & found a 2004 thread where Peggy Frye responded to the same question. This is part of her answer:

So I know anything at the grocery store (except perhaps Odwalla - do they have grape juice?) would be pasteurized. This priest is rather liberal (he's a Jesuit, after all ;)), I'm hesitant to talk with him because we've just started here & I hate making waves. I can be very bold writing, but not so much face-to-face. :(

He won't be here this Sunday, perhaps next week I can work up the courage. (When I was young & shy, I thought I would outgrow it. Now I'm old & shy. :()

[/quote]

Do it in a non confrontational way. Turn it into a "teaching" opportunity so to speak.

Say something like, "Fr. I don't understand, can you help me? I though only wine could be used during the consecration. Am I wrong?"

It is non accusatory, but yet lets him know you are aware of what "should" be done.

If he sticks with the "grape juice" instead of wine, just say something like "I didn't know that. Could you show me the document?"

Again, non confrontational, although somewhat manipulative (you may need to go to confession), but it will get the point across.

ETA: Bottom line is, you need to talk to him about it, and make sure you are both on the same page with what is being said. Is he really meaning "mustum", and saying "grape juice", etc.


#8

If grape juice is used instead of wine or mustum, no consecration of the Precious Blood takes place. If there is no consecration of the Precious Blood, the mass is not valid.

wdtprs.com/blog/2010/01/quaeritur-plain-unfermented-grape-juice-in-chalice-for-mass/


#9

Since it is not necessary for anyone but the priest to receive from the Cup I can’t see the bishop granting wholesale permission for mustum for the entire parish. But then, stranger things have happened.


#10

Thanks everyone. I was going to simply abstain & let the matter slide, but I now see (having read the links provided) that it's a more serious problem than I thought.

It will be another week before Fr. will be back (there is a communion service tomorror). Is anyone curious enough about his answer that I should "report" back? :)

I'm hoping my taste bud were wrong & that it is mustum. After all, it's been years since I've tasted Welches grape juice.


#11

[quote="Bonnie, post:10, topic:314284"]
Thanks everyone. I was going to simply abstain & let the matter slide, but I now see (having read the links provided) that it's a more serious problem than I thought.

It will be another week before Fr. will be back (there is a communion service tomorror). Is anyone curious enough about his answer that I should "report" back? :)

I'm hoping my taste bud were wrong & that it is mustum. After all, it's been years since I've tasted Welches grape juice.

[/quote]

I'm curious. I like what twopekinguys suggested and wanted to encourage you.


#12

I’m interested too.


#13

I would go to him and say he must not have spoken clearly--since I would be sure he didn't explain it well enough. If the priest did say this, some people would be bewitched, bothered and bewildered by it, and I would presume when this came out he misspoke. Such words could cause him great troubled otherwise, including what that could occur if it was reported to the bishop.


#14

If it is not fermented, it is not valid matter.


#15

The Pentecostal churches I have been to have communion with grape juice. They also believe communion is symbolic.


#16

[quote="Phemie, post:9, topic:314284"]
Since it is not necessary for anyone but the priest to receive from the Cup I can't see the bishop granting wholesale permission for mustum for the entire parish. But then, stranger things have happened.

[/quote]

Alcoholism on reservations in the US is incredibly rampant so he very well might have.


#17

I forgot that I've got kitty clinic next Sunday, which means I go to Mass at a different parish Sat. evening. So it will be 2 weeks before I have an answer.


#18

[quote="Phemie, post:9, topic:314284"]
Since it is not necessary for anyone but the priest to receive from the Cup I can't see the bishop granting wholesale permission for mustum for the entire parish. But then, stranger things have happened.

[/quote]

Even in the jails here where there is a strict ban on alcohol in the prison (bringing alcohol into a prison seems to be one of the few crimes that will actually get you in deep doodoo in Canada), the priests use wine, but have permission to bring in the bare minimum required for Mass (there was a girl in my class who insisted priests were using grape juice like protestants. The class went from correctional management to transubstantiation and valid matter. This seemed to happen frequently in my classes.) Only the priest received under both species.


#19

Hallelujah! It's mustum! :extrahappy:

Saw the priest last night & asked. As was suggested, he used the term "grape juice" because most people don't know what mustum is.

Thanks for the encouragement! :)


#20

[quote="Bonnie, post:19, topic:314284"]
Hallelujah! It's mustum! :extrahappy:

Saw the priest last night & asked. As was suggested, he used the term "grape juice" because most people don't know what mustum is.

Thanks for the encouragement! :)

[/quote]

Glory to God! :thumbsup:


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