Must the paten be used for the large host?


**I was scolded today for placing the main host, for the celebrant, in the with the hosts for Mass.

The vessel used is actually a paten - which is defined as:

A saucer-like disk which holds the bread which becomes the Body of Christ.


The priest said the main host that will be used by the priest should be on an individual paten. I have never heard of this before and tried to find in the GIRM where this might be referenced.

Please let me know the citing. I have been a Sacristin for a long time and did not know if this is the case. BTW - I have been a sacristin for this priest before.


We do that at my parish. I don’t believe there is anything wrong with it.


At least part of the problem here might be the style of paten. The traditional style is rather flat (only slightly concave, sometimes with with a slight depression in the center), whereas some of the newer models are rather deep and bowl-shaped, in order to accommodate a large number of small hosts. Those latter are really more like short ciboria than a true paten. I can understand a priest not wanting to use the latter, since he would end-up fumbling around with the small hosts.


I don’t believe there’s any hard rule on this (so long as any appropriate vessel is used). That being said, individual priests have their own preference when it comes to this sort of thing.


I don’t know why they just don’t use the small paten for the celebrant’s host and the ciborium for the rest of them. Those bowl-things with stands look awful, imho; they aren’t really patens, and they aren’t really ciboria.

Real ciboria with a stem are functional and beautiful.

closed #6

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