Intoxicated homeless man behind me in the Communion line

It happened during Mass a few days ago. The man reeked of alcohol. The only thing I did was turn around and give him a stare. Should have approached him after Mass but didn’t have the guts. He received Communion. Not to say that he was unworthy-- I don’t know the guy. However, its highly likely he shouldn’t have received given his intoxication. What would you do in this situation?

I would mind my own business and get a life .

Pray for him - it’s the best you can do.
Apart from that, you could talk to a priest about your concerns.

Or ask him if he needs any help. Maybe point him towards a soup kitchen or shelter.

I would read and pray with Matthew 25:31-46.

One time during a mass I had already received and was kneeling in the pew and noticed a man in line who seemed out of place. As he approached to receive the host he put up his hands to say he didn’t want that and pointed to the eucharistic minister holding the wine indicating that was what he wanted and the priest looked over to the eucharistic minister and shook his head. The eucharistic minister withheld the chalice from him and he walked on. He didn’t appear intoxicated but was clearly in line for one thing.
I am not an eucharistic minister and I don’t know how they are trained but I wouldn’t have said anything but leave it to the priest and eucharistic minister.

I would have given him a really cold stare as you would anyone you have judged unworthy to be there in the front of the temple. I would have a few words of advice to the priest afterwards for allowing a man who was obviously unclean to take communion with the elect… I mean ordinary parishioners. I might even have been tempted to rend my garments, but why ruin a Sunday best?

Actually, its none of your business who is in the Communion line and I even find it uncharitable that you turned around and gave him a stare. I wonder if you then became unworthy to receive!!!

I liked it when the ushers would lead each line out of the pew and he could have spotted the situation and took care of it gracefully. Maybe the poor man was very hungry and looking for even a small morsel. I pray Our Lord helped him in many ways. God Bless. Memaw

I would be concentrating on receiving the Body and Blood of the Lord into my own soul.

It is not our job to police the Eucharist.

Well said.

You, a layman, would give words of “advice” to a priest? WOW.

For all we know the man has drank daily for 40 years and is less culpable; ie. he may not be in mortal sin.

Actually it is our business. But in a very charitable way, certainly not by staring and judging. I have a friend that saw a man recieve Communion and place it in his pocket. and she followed him back and asked him to take it out of his pocket and consurme it in front of her and he refused. The usher saw and came up to ask about the problem and the man threw the host down on the floor and ran out. Certainly his intentions were not of the kindest sort. But the friend saved Our Lord from who knows what by acting. God Bless, Memaw

If I happened to see a person pocket a host I would tell an usher- not that person.

Te situation of the OP is quite different than that.

He could have gotten away with it by that time. She had courage!!! and Love for Our Lord. It all worked out . God Bless, Memaw


You knew he was homeless, how?

It saddens me when someone thinks they know who should be in the Communion line receiving. It’s always " someone ELSE shouldn’t be there."

That said I trust the original poster had a good intention by this post.

Quite a good argument for why we should be receiving on the tongue. I’ve also seen a lady take the Blessed Sacrament and not consume it and the priest had to run after her and snatch it from her hand!

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