I am asking for your help, support, and guidance. I recently was commissioned to be a Eucharistic Minister at my church. I was very honored at being able to serve the members of the Church in this manner.
However, I find my nerves get the best of me while I am serving. I want to be able to relax and go deep into the idea that I am serving Christ to the congregation… but I am too nervous.
Maybe I am nervous because it is Christ, and I don’t want to make a mistake, I don’t know.
I just hope I can relax a bit, and enjoy the moment. My parish priest said it was his favorite to distribute communion because it was a form of adoration!
Any help, prayers, advice, is greatly appreciated.
Your sister in Christ.
I think you will have less anxiety as time goes on. I’m never really nervous, and sometimes I make mistakes up there. But, since you are handling the holy body and blood of our Lord, it’s not a bad idea to be on your toes.
As Sheeniac said, you mean “Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion”, unless you were ordained (because priests are the only Eucharistic Ministers).
I personally don’t do EMHC’ing, because they’re sooooo terribly overused. So, my post is only to correct your error. All I hope for you is that you dress appropriately when you are an EMHC, and that you act with reverence, care, and with all the respect due to Jesus’s Body!
Nope. It’s wrong. Words mean things, and in this case there is a precise definition for it. Just because your diocese does it does not legitimize it.
Something FAR easier to type for Eucharistic Minister of Holy Communion is EMHC. Four letters. I’m 99% sure anyone who peruses these boards knows what it means (Lord knows there are enough threads about 'em).
Out of respect for the true EMs, you should use EMHC. If your Archbishop were a Cardinal, would you still call him an Archbishop? (That’s the best analogy I have).
Well, my first post stated I was just going to correct an error…
Ask for the intercession of St.Michael the Archangel? And of course Blessed Virgin Mary. And your Guardian Angel to keep you… safe from badness/wrongness while being an EMHC.
That, and don’t drop That which you are holding (although know how to clean up if that happens).
And don’t worry. Most people SHOULD be concentrating on receiving the Eucharist, not who is distributing.
I’ve EMHC’d once (I dislike the practice, and it’s overused, but I was commandeered into doing it at the last minute), and although it was COMPLETELY unnecessary for me to do it (Two Chalices being offered for no more than 60 people? Please) it wasn’t that bad. And this from a guy who used to be terrified of large groups and serving at the altar.
Raes, as a reply, I agree with BA. The first thing to reverence is to use the correct wording. It influences how you think. And you would do more of a service to use the correct wording. I face a similar problem - in my parish, the documentation refers to us ‘special ministers’. It annoys me to no end. All it would take is a single sentence explaining the terms, but instead, they have to dumb it down. And in doing so, they lose something. Ahhh… good intentions…
I’m not sure of your motivation in becoming an EMHC, but I truly struggled with it. Indeed, I agree with BA. They are seriously overused. However, I know that this will continue, and that in order to move up in serving God and Church, it was a good way to get started. The defining point for me was that SOMEONE was going to volunteer. It would be someone who was either orthodox or unorthodox/happy-clappy/etc. If I didn’t volunteer, it would increase the likeliness that someone unorthodox would volunteer.
So here I am!
I focus not on myself, but on others and God. One thing I keep an eye on is that everyone who receives in the hand actually consumes the host (puts it in their mouth). In this way, I protect the Eucharist. I also keep my eyes down otherwise, for fear that I look proud. In my perfect world, people wouldn’t even see me, but see only the Blood of Christ.
Your nervousness will go away as time goes by. The more you focus on God and neighbor, and less on self, the faster it will depart. Don’t worry about how you feel. If God chooses to give you peace, He will. If not, then He has a darn good reason not to. Trust, work, and move on.
I was a EMHC many years ago (at that time we were still referred to as Eucharistic Ministers, despite the changes in name nowadays) and I still remember how I felt the first time I did this service. I felt so very humbled that I would be allowed to serve God’s People in this manner. It was a very emotional moment for me as I placed the Body of Christ in someone’s hand or offered them the cup of the Blood of Christ. Because I belong to a small congregation, these people I was serving were my friends and often, I said their names.
Take your time. Don’t feel rushed. Both you, and the person receiving, are at one with our God at that moment. When you minister the Cup, just be sure to wipe the rim of the cup carefully with the purificator before offering it to the next person.
Thank God for the blessings you receive doing this service to him. He is using you to bring you closer to him.
Don’t think of it as serving Christ to the whole congregation. Try to think of it as serving Christ to just the person you are serving to at the time. It is just the two of you and Christ at that moment. For that moment at least, there is a bond between the two of you.
As a side note, a couple years ago, a lady who I knew by name, dropped the host. She looked at me with utter horror and asked what she should do. I told her to pick it up and consume it (I was the blood minister and she dropped it while walking to me). Out of that sharing of Christ developed a wonderful friendship.
stick to the ciborium if you’re nervous, the cup/chalice may make you more so (can slip). i think part of it may be a fear of being in front of people, just relax and focus on holding our Lord as the Infant, or like Mary in the Pieta, or after the ressurection.