Ignoring Redemptionis Sacramentum

[left]Nearly every Mass I have been to in my life has used extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist. Even weekday mases with about only about a dozen parishoners. This goes on despite repeated instructions from Rome to the contrary.
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Most recently the Vatican issued Redemptionis Sacramentum on March 25, 2004.
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Chapter IV**
2. The distribution of Holy Communion[/left]

[88.] The faithful should normally receive sacramental Communion of the Eucharist during Mass itself, at the moment laid down by the rite of celebration, that is to say, just after the Priest celebrant’s Communion.[172] It is the Priest celebrant’s responsibility to minister Communion, perhaps assisted by other Priests or Deacons; and he should not resume the Mass until after the Communion of the faithful is concluded. Only when there is a necessity may extraordinary ministers assist the Priest celebrant in accordance with the norm of law.[173]

Is it any wonder that American Catholics often ignore the teachings of the Church when our Bishops ignore the teachings of the Church?

Sorry for the rant but this one bugs me.

Would having to give Communion to 400 to 600 people at every Mass be considered a necessity?

That’s my parish. Our Masses are jam-packed, every one!

My solution is to always receive communion from the priest.

If everyone did this, the extraordinary ministers of the eucharist would soon be out of business.

[quote=DianJo]Would having to give Communion to 400 to 600 people at every Mass be considered a necessity?

That’s my parish. Our Masses are jam-packed, every one!
[/quote]

I’m not sure how many people can receive from one individual in a reeasonable amount of time but here is what His Holiness John Paul II had to say about it:

“The faithful, whether religious or lay, who are authorized as extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist can distribute Communion only when there is no priest, deacon or acolyte, when the priest is impeded by illness or advanced age, or when the number of the faithful going to Communion is so large as to make the celebration of the Mass excessively long.” - Inaestimabile Donum

This is clearly not the case in many, many cases.

[quote=DianJo]Would having to give Communion to 400 to 600 people at every Mass be considered a necessity?

That’s my parish. Our Masses are jam-packed, every one!
[/quote]

400-600. Try 1500-2000. (Christmas and Easter 5000 to 6000) They had to have multiple Masses going on to accomdate. Hmmm, I can remember as an acolyte at one Mass performing both functions (serving the priest and distributing Communion). But I was told, that a person shouldn’t occupy or perform mroe than one function. Is this correct??? Thanks and God Bless.

[quote=slinky1882]400-600. Try 1500-2000. (Christmas and Easter 5000 to 6000) They had to have multiple Masses going on to accomdate. Hmmm, I can remember as an acolyte at one Mass performing both functions (serving the priest and distributing Communion). But I was told, that a person shouldn’t occupy or perform mroe than one function. Is this correct??? Thanks and God Bless.
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Yes, there are some extremely large parishes with packed masses :thumbsup:. But the use of extrordinary ministers is commonly abused–to the point here I wonder how much time they actually save.

Let’s take the 400-600 person mass. What happens at parishes where scores of ministers are employed, especially if they sit in the pews rather than the sanctuary? We have to wait for them to go up front and get organized; more time is used to distribute the host; then they all receive communion in the sanctuary; after communion more time is expended putting away the various vessels and making sure the remaining host is placed in the tabernacle. Has any time actuallly been saved, outside the few minutes shaved off the distribution of the host? Not to mention the aesthetics of all these people milling around the sanctuary like it’s a buffet.

Now, let’s assume instead the laity file up, orderly, in two lines (one priest and one extraordinary minister). Indeed, the now unemployed extraordinary ministers could serve as ushers to maintain order. It should take about ten to twenty minutes for communion. That may longer than we are used to, but does not strike me as “excessive.”

At some point the size of the congregation and the length of the mass does dictate the use of extraordinary ministers, but it is clear that they are overused in many smaller and medium sized parishes.

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