Holy Thursday Sacrilege

I know this is really late…but I was thinking about something. This past Holy Thursday, after the Eucharistic procession, my parish priest took the Host and placed it in a monstrance on a table that had dinner rolls, wine glasses with crystal light, and one wine glass tipped over with a bunch of coins by it. This really bothered me. He said to go worship the Eucharist. He wanted us to have the fall effect, but it just did not seem right to me, the whole setup. Thoughts on this?

I don’t see this as a sacrilege. Rather than being irreverent it seems to have been an attempt at decoration that maybe went a little tacky. If it so offended you you may want to send a tactful letter to the pastor letting him know how you would prefer a traditional exposition of the Blessed Sacrament during the next Triduum.

I don’t see it as sacrilege at all.

The bread rolls, the wine glasses were a reminder that the Institution of Holy Communion took place when friends were gathered together for a meal - remember the supreme love and humanity shown by Our Lord when he said ‘I call you friends’ - and the overturned wineglass with the coins emphasises how His loving heart was betrayed.so cruelly.

Where is the sacrilege?

I understand your annoyance. But you have to understand too that the priest was not defiling Christ. . . he was bringing Christ down to our level; a level of tatteredness and disorder. the Christ of the slums.

After the Holy Thursday Mass, the ciborium is brought in procession to the altar of repose, which must be suitably decorated. It is not to be in a monstrance. It is to be in a ciborium, in a tabernacle or appropriate secure container (the parish may not have an extra tabernacle). It is in repose, not exposed, so not in a monstrance. And the dinner rolls, etc. described are definitely NOT an appropriate decoration.

This was totally inappropriate. You are quite correct. It was not right,

The sacrament should not be exposed right after its transfer on Holy Thursday. Also, exposing it with a bunch of dinner rolls and a wine glass seems to be irreverent.

No, it’s not sacrilege. It’s just tacky, and poor taste.

Although we cannot deny that there is a certain aspect of a meal at the Mass, outward signs like this grossly overestimate it, and completely overshadow the simultaneous importance of the Mass as a sacrifice.

I believe the typical approach is best: put the Blessed Sacrament in a monstrance, and decorate with fresh flowers and candles. You can’t go wrong with that.

The tipped over glass of coins represents the fact that Judas would betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver and cause Jesus’ blood to be spilled.


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