Is pita bread acceptable Catholic communion?

A friend of mine said she baked unleavened pita bread at the request of her Lutheran priest.

I’ve only had those standard white wafers when I could receive Catholic Communion, and currently receive Episcopalian Communion.

Is pita ok per Catholic standards??

So could you list the ingredients of the pita bread, just out of curiosity? This will make it easier for me to answer.

Pita made out of nothing but wheaten flour and water would be valid matter, but IMO not really suitable for Mass. The way pita is handled and baked, it forms a natural “pocket” ---- the crust stays firm but the inside is easily separated. That’s not the best kind of bread to use for Mass.


Oooh I’m not sure…I could ask? It was just an off the cuff sort of conversation…

I took the communion the other day and she was like “did you like it?? I made it myself!”

If it’s anything like the bread used in Coptic liturgies, (which by the way look really delicious), I’m going for a hard no.

Leavened and unleavened wheat bread are valid matter, but depending on the Church one or the other may be illicit according to the law of that Church. Latin Code of Canon Law requires unleavened bread:

Can. 924 §1. The most holy eucharistic sacrifice must be offered with bread and with wine in which a little water must be mixed.

§2. The bread must be only wheat and recently made so that there is no danger of spoiling.

§3. The wine must be natural from the fruit of the vine and not spoiled.

In the Latin Rite communion bread is primarily in the form of the small individual host. This prevents particles of the sacred species from dropping as crumbs.

In the Eastern Rite Catholic Churches, they use leavened bread per the eastern code of canon law, and the communicant receives it in their mouth via the communion spoon.

A quick scan of pita bread recipes yields ingredients other than wheat and water (leavening is used making it illicit in the Latin Church, but still valid). Salt, Oil, sugar or honey are also listed— which would not be permitted.


if it is unleavened wheat (only) bread, that it would be licit to use at mass.

However, I heard a priest once talk about how much of a logistical mess it was when he used a pita like bread once when he was a young priest.

Lots of crumbs and it got a little moisture when inside the tabernacle and became one big block. He said after that, it became apparent to him why the Church came up with the thin bread hosts.


No it is not.

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The parish I belong to used to make its own bread for Sunday Masses.
Only enough for 200 portions was made and we used regular hosts for weekday Masses and in the tabernacle for sick calls.

It was whole wheat flour and water, so it was completely valid. Our new Bishop put an end to it when he mandated the diocese to use one of 2 types of commercial hosts only. :pensive:

I’m not familiar with unleavened pita. My recipe calls for yeast to make it puff up and create the pocket. I have trouble imagining how you could get the pocket without something to make it do that.

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Was it unleavened bread? I’m trying to understand why the Bishop would say no, unless he frankly didn’t want to risk someone in the future dropping in some barley, rye or any other flavoring which would make it invalid.

Yes, unlearned and perfectly valid & licit matter.

As to a reason, “Because I said so and for consistency throughout the diocese” was the answer we were given.

I have wondered if Ritz crackers or saltines minus the salt would be appropriate in an emergency.

I’m not advocating it of course just curious in a natural disaster situation.

OK, so it’s to make sure someone doesn’t create invalid matter purposefully or by accident in the future.

Why would an Episcopalian or Lutheran care what Catholics consider to be valid matter? Or the other way around for that matter?

99.99% of their clergy don’t have valid orders per Catholic teaching, so there is mi minimal risk of it actually being consecrated even if it is proper matter for it.

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You get much the same effect when making chapatis but they are nothing but water and flour.

NO. I have pita bread in my refrigerator (it came from a Lebanese restaurant near me) and it can’t be used in a RC Mass.

It’s 100%. Protestants do not have a valid priesthood.

I said that in case there is some loophole that may be an exception. For example, possibly a man who is ordained a Catholic priest, then converts to Lutheran/COE and joins their priesthood/ministry, while continuing to celebrate with Catholic form, matter and intent.

The ingredients of Catholic Communion Hosts are shown here in this video:

Making Pita bread - however bread is proved. In Jesus day they would use a starter rather than yeast. There is quite a difference in the recipes.

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