I’m a convert this year and this is a particular area that continues to nag and harm me.
With the way communion is done in the contemporary Church, it seems almost masochistic based on my temporal reasoning.
(A) Weekly (or even daily) receiving of the Eucharist is encouraged. It is not normal to just abstain from receiving. It is the norm in any parish across the country for almost everybody to filter up the procession line
(B) It is a mortal sin to receive communion while in mortal sin. Based on statistics and wordly observation, a larger-than-ever demographic of Americans are enamored in various activities that the Church considers to be a grave matter.
© Confession is less accessible than in decades
Now, seeing as how human beings are social creatures, how this works is that you’ll have your Sunday Mass, and with the current method, the entire congregation dronefully filters up to receive. If you are not Catholic, you will be a black sheep. If you feel unworthy to receive, you will be a black sheep (this is worse-than-ever in close-knit parishes). People describe this decision as being a private matter in the world of ivory tower theology. On planet Earth, you’re making a visible statement whether you want to or not. It almost seems set up as though the system is intentionally provoking people to sin, like pushing people along a sacramental meat grinder of spiritual mutilation or letting you to dwell among the ostracized.
That is what my human reasoning tells me. As you can see, it isn’t a very optimistic outlook.
On the other hand, I believe the Church is divinely protected by the Holy Spirit. I believe it is the will of Jesus Christ that he be received in the sacrament often. So reason also tells me that somewhere in the above paragraph, I have to have erred somewhere. There has to be something to this entire seemingly insane and suicidal set of circumstances that is wise which I am not appreciating as well as I should. What is it? Can somebody offer me illumination? Is this God’s way of telling people to grow a spine? That’s currently the best explanation I have, which I suppose is a good one.