How to receive on the tongue?


#1

Hello all,

I am a recent convert (about a year and a half) and in RCIA we were taught to receive in the hand. I am feeling strongly called to receive on the tongue, probably starting for Lent. Can someone offer me a practical step by step how-to?

Here are some of my questions. When I receive in the hand I say “amen” after “the Body of Christ.” When do I do that if I receive on my tongue so I am not talking with my mouth full? Or do I not say it at all? How far out do I stick my tongue to indicate this is my preference (especially for those who know me as receiving in the hand?) Do I still make the Sign of the Cross afterward?

Any advice you can give is greatly appreciated. Thank you.


#2

i can't tell you how to receive on the tongue, but wanted to point out that making the sign of the cross after Holy Communion isn't compulsory, and some think it is superfluous, as if receiving the Host wasn't enough holiness.

Does the priest make the sign of the cross after he receives? No.


#3

Whether you receive on the tongue or in the hand you say Amen after the Priest or EMHC says "Body of Christ." If you are receiving on the tongue, have you hands together, tilt your head back a little and stick your tongue out. You can practice looking in the mirror so you can make sure you are sticking your tongue out flat. Try to make it parallel with the floor and flat. Be sure to stick your tongue out far enough that the Eucharist can be placed on your tongue without them touching your tongue with their fingers. You can also practice by having someone place a piece of cracker on your tongue.

Welcome Home and to CAF!


#4

Also, there is not a thing wrong with making the Sign of the Cross after the Priest places the Eucharist on your tongue. :slight_smile:


#5

Don't be too nervous. I received on the tongue for the first time at my wedding...kneeling...in the Vatican. No rehearsal! Can you imagine if I would have dropped it??? It's easy. Jjust say "Amen" with your hands folded and stick your tongue out a bit. The host sticks to it rather nicely :)


#6

Approach the Altar. If possible I choose to receive from the Priest or Deacon rather than an EMHC. If an Altar rail is in use you can kneel down. Otherwise you can choose to make some other act of respect. I I can't kneel, I like to genuflect as the person in front of me recieves. The priest will hold up the Eucharist and proclaim "The Body of Christ". You reply "Amen", Tilt your head back, mouth open and extend your tongue as far as possible, flat.

The priest will place the Eucharist onto your tongue. you take it into your mouth, make a Sign of the Cross, and return to your seat.
If Holy Communion is being distributed under both species, you may then receive the Precious Blood.

If the Eucharist is being distrubuted under both species by Intinction (dipping the Body into the Blood) this must only be done by the Priest or Deacon, and must be recieved on the Tongue.
It is expressly forbidden to dip the host yourself into the chalice, or to receive an intincted (dipped) host on the Hand.


#7

[quote="longing4Jesus, post:1, topic:314021"]
Hello all,

Here are some of my questions. When I receive in the hand I say "amen" after "the Body of Christ." When do I do that if I receive on my tongue so I am not talking with my mouth full? Or do I not say it at all? How far out do I stick my tongue to indicate this is my preference (especially for those who know me as receiving in the hand?) Do I still make the Sign of the Cross afterward?

[/quote]

Welcome to the Church!

The preference to make the Sign of the Cross after receiving our Lord, is your choice. (I do this out of my personal way to respect Our Lord, as I would at the end of a prayer.)

You say, "Amen" before the host is placed on your tongue.

(If you attend a Latin Mass [Extra Ordinary Form of the Mass, Tridentine Mass], everyone receives on the tongue while kneeling. At this Mass, you do not say anything when Father says, "Body of Christ".)


#8

In the Ordinary Form of the Mass, say "Amen" after recieving. In the Extraordinary Form of the Mass say nothing, as the priest says it in his prayer.


#9

Ever since the year 800, when the Council of Rouen forbade the lay faithful from receiving on the hand, reception in the mouth has been the traditional way to receive Holy Communion. Of course, now it is perfectly legitimate and fine to receive either on the hand or on the tongue, either standing or kneeling.

If you wish to receive on the tongue, after you say "Amen" open your mouth and raise your head a bit - just enough for the priest to see what he's doing - and stick your tongue out a bit, so he can place the sacred host on top of it, rather than having to introduce it inside your mouth. See a picture of Mother Teresa here.

I believe it is still in the Roman Missal that we are supposed to employ communion patens to avoid the risk of the Blessed Sacrament falling on the ground. Unfortunately this is barely ever done. Therefore the best position to receive on the tongue remains kneeling. In that case, stay a few steps back from the person in front of you, and when they walk away, walk forward and kneel immediately but gently, as the priest starts to say "The Body of Christ". After kneeling, say "Amen", and then do as above, but raise your head a little bit more.

This is how I and many people I know ordinarily receive Holy Communion in the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite. And we also prefer reception from a priest or deacon, since EMHC should only be employed when strictly needed because of a shortage of priests or deacons, and this is not often the case.

For the other questions: never say anything after you receive the holy Eucharist. In the Ordinary Form you say "Amen" before you receive it. In the Extraordinary Form you do not say a word. Once you receive the sacred host, you may chew it. It is perfectly respectful, surely the priest himself does so, and it will also avoid inconvenients such as the species of the bread sticking to the top of the mouth and distracting us from the prayerful contemplation of the Divine Substance.

You do not have to make the Sign of the Cross afterwards, but you may, if you so want to welcome the good Lord in your heart.

After Holy Communion, you are a living tabernacle for about 15 minutes. Unfortunately, not many take notice of this and often leave way too quickly. The Lord has mentioned this sad circumnstance in several private revelations. Therefore, remain in quiet recollection even for 10 to 15 minutes after Holy Mass has ended, and the Lord will be very glad of this time you are spending with Him.

St. Padre Pio used to describe Holy Communion as "a fusion, like when two candles melt together". Such is the greatness of this Sacrament most Blessed, of the consummation of this mystical matrimony. Some saints recommend to pray to Our Lady to be in our hearts, so that the Lord may dwell in her beloved Mother (His most exhalted throne of glory) all the while he dwells in your heart (His favorite temple).

Some have written that we should focus above all else in thanksgiving when we have received Holy Communion. Of course, when Christ is one with you, you may bring any matter to His most loving attention, or even none at all and just love Him for a while. But to simply spend that time of heaven on earth making requests is not the most perfect way to go.

Love the Eucharist, always remembering how wonderfully it embodies the words of the Holy Spirit:

Do not fear, daughter! See, your king is coming, meek and humble.

For if you could see the Lord in His glory, without the veil of the Bread of Life, surely you would die of sheer joy and awe.


#10

Also, there is not a thing wrong with making the Sign of the Cross after the Priest places the Eucharist on your tongue

:signofcross::signofcross:


#11

This video is very informative: youtu.be/Tc6RI6wT9Z4?t=2m15s


#12

[quote="corsair, post:8, topic:314021"]
In the Ordinary Form of the Mass, say "Amen" after recieving. In the Extraordinary Form of the Mass say nothing, as the priest says it in his prayer.

[/quote]

Correction:

In the Ordinary Form say "Amen" **before **receiving.

(Ordinary Form - means the Mass is in English (not Latin) - just to clarify incase that is a new term to the OP.)


#13

I notice some people respond with information about kneeling to receive Holy Communion.

To the OP: if you decide to kneel, I would suggest that you not kneel to receive unless you speak to your priest first.

This often is a heated debate between Catholics and even between a lay person and his priest.


#14

[quote="RoseMary131, post:13, topic:314021"]
I notice some people respond with information about kneeling to receive Holy Communion.

To the OP: if you decide to kneel, I would suggest that you not kneel to receive unless you speak to your priest first.

This often is a heated debate between Catholics and even between a lay person and his priest.

[/quote]

Seconded! I experienced this firsthand. It was not pretty. :o


#15

Thank you all SO much, this was extremely helpful, especially the video.

I should have made clear, I was talking about the Ordinary Form of the Mass. We do attend the Extraordinary Form when we are visiting my in-laws in Pittsburgh and of course I receive on the tongue there... but that's a totally different situation. There's an altar rail, and we're kneeling, and they use a paten, and most importantly there is no question about how anyone is to receive. I'm most worried that I will confuse Father or the EMHC's all of whom are used to me receiving in my hand, and cause a small scene at a time when the focus should only be on Jesus.

So here's what I have decided: I already genuflect before hand, and will continue to do so. I will not kneel; first of all, I have never seen anyone in our parish do that so there is no precedent for it but most importantly, if I kneel where there is nothing to hold onto there is NO WAY I'm getting back up again! :D

I usually attend the noon Mass on Fridays and it is a smaller attendance than the morning Masses so it might be a good 'first time.' We'll see if I can get my courage up. I don't know why after a year and a half I am feeling led in this direction but it keeps coming up in prayer. I wish I had a spiritual director to talk to about it but as I don't I will just trust the Holy Spirit keeps putting this idea in my heart for a reason.

Thank you all again!


#16

Yes, I say "Amen" after they say "The Body of Christ", and then I open my mouth and stick out my tongue.

Generally this is not a problem.

Once, however, the Eucharistic Minister was quite short, so as I opened my mouth, I bent my knees to lower myself a little. Well this presented a moving target for the Eucharistic Minister and she missed my tongue and let go.

I saw the Host drop and my hands shot up to catch it - which I was able to do.

But, as my hand shot up, it hit the edge of the bowl containing the remaining Hosts and ALMOST upset the whole thing. Thank God it didn't. :o

So now, I make sure my head doesn't move once I stick my tongue out.

Peace,
John


#17

[quote="longing4Jesus, post:15, topic:314021"]
Thank you all SO much, this was extremely helpful, especially the video.
I'm most worried that I will confuse Father or the EMHC's all of whom are used to me receiving in my hand, and cause a small scene at a time when the focus should only be on Jesus.
Thank you all again!

[/quote]

The priest and the Extra Ordinary Eucharistic Ministers will know by the communicant's posture their choice in receiving Our Lord.

To receive in the hand we make a throne with our hands with an open palm presented to the priest. To receive on the tongue, our hands remain folded and we open our mouth to extend our tongue.

Father will simply follow your cue based on your posture without thinking how you normally receive.


#18

I go to the OF as well. When I first converted I received in the hand. I changed churches and I began to feel led to receive on my tongue. It is my personal choice. We are allowed to receive either way. It was awkward at first.


#19

[quote="longing4Jesus, post:15, topic:314021"]
I'm most worried that I will confuse Father or the EMHC's all of whom are used to me receiving in my hand, and cause a small scene at a time when the focus should only be on Jesus.

[/quote]

Put your hands behind your back as you step up to receive.


#20

[quote="RoseMary131, post:13, topic:314021"]
I notice some people respond with information about kneeling to receive Holy Communion.

To the OP: if you decide to kneel, I would suggest that you not kneel to receive unless you speak to your priest first.

This often is a heated debate between Catholics and even between a lay person and his priest.

[/quote]

I completely disagree! To the OP, if you want to kneel, You kneel!!! And don't let anyone convince you otherwise. From the then Cardinal Ratzinger;

Kneeling indicates and promotes the adoration necessary before receiving the Eucharistic Christ.

From this perspective, the then-Cardinal Ratzinger assured that: "Communion only reaches its true depth when it is supported and surrounded by adoration" [The Spirit of the Liturgy (Ignatius Press, 2000), p. 90]. For this reason, Cardinal Ratzinger maintained that “the practice of kneeling for Holy Communion has in its favor a centuries-old tradition, and it is a particularly expressive sign of adoration, completely appropriate in light of the true, real and substantial presence of Our Lord Jesus Christ under the consecrated species” [cited in the Letter "This Congregation" of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, 1 July 1, 2002].

Then there was this from 2002;

Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments

Responses to Questions on Kneeling for Communion

The following responses to questions were published in the November-December 2002 edition of Notitiae, the official publication of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. These responses represent the view of the Holy See on the questions of kneeling to receive Holy Communion and the right of Catholics to address concerns to the Holy See.

Note: These letters appeared in Adoremus Bulletin, December 2002 - January 2003


Congregation de Cultu Divino et Disciplina Sacramentorum

Prot. n. 1322/02/L

Rome, 1 July 2002

Your Excellency,

This Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments has recently received reports of members of the faithful in your Diocese being refused Holy Communion unless while standing to receive, as opposed to kneeling. The reports state that such a policy has been announced to parishioners. There were possible indications that such a phenomenon might be somewhat more widespread in the Diocese, but the Congregation is unable to verify whether such is the case. This Dicastery is confident that Your Excellency will be in a position to make a more reliable determination of the matter, and these complaints in any event provide an occasion for the Congregation to communicate the manner in which it habitually addresses this matter, with a request that you make this position known to any priests who may be in need of being thus informed.

The Congregation in fact is concerned at the number of similar complaints that it has received in recent months from various places, and considers any refusal of Holy Communion to a member of the faithful on the basis of his or her kneeling posture to be a grave violation of one of the most basic rights of the Christian faithful, namely that of being assisted by their Pastors by means of the Sacraments (Codex Iuris Canonici, canon 213). In view of the law that "sacred ministers may not deny the sacraments to those who opportunely ask for them, are properly disposed and are not prohibited by law from receiving them" (canon 843 ¶ 1), there should be no such refusal to any Catholic who presents himself for Holy Communion at Mass, except in cases presenting a danger of grave scandal to other believers arising out of the person's unrepented public sin or obstinate heresy or schism, publicly professed or declared. Even where the Congregation has approved of legislation denoting standing as the posture for Holy Communion, in accordance with the adaptations permitted to the Conferences of Bishops by the Institutio Generalis Missalis Romani n. 160, paragraph 2, it has done so with the stipulation that communicants who choose to kneel are not to be denied Holy Communion on these grounds.

In fact, as His Eminence, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger has recently emphasized, the practice of kneeling for Holy Communion has in its favor a centuries-old tradition, and it is a particularly expressive sign of adoration, completely appropriate in light of the true, real and substantial presence of Our Lord Jesus Christ under the consecrated species.

Given the importance of this matter, the Congregation would request that Your Excellency inquire specifically whether this priest in fact has a regular practice of refusing Holy Communion to any member of the faithful in the circumstances described above and -- if the complaint is verified -- that you also firmly instruct him and any other priests who may have had such a practice to refrain from acting thus in the future. Priests should understand that the Congregation will regard future complaints of this nature with great seriousness, and if they are verified, it intends to seek disciplinary action consonant with the gravity of the pastoral abuse.

Thanking Your Excellency for your attention to this matter and relying on your kind collaboration in its regard,

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Jorge A. Cardinal Medina Estévez
Prefect

+Francesco Pio Tamburrino
Archbishop Secretary

And then there's Mother Angelica who always promoted and encouraged kneeling when receiving Jesus in the Eucharist! So by all means if you feel the desire to kneel then do it.

Peace, Mark


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