Our parish recently was blessed with a new priest. My question is this: During the distribution of Communion, he allows an extraordinary minister to take communion to the choir, in the choir loft. Sometimes the minister has to wait for the choir to finish singing (which should not be done during Communion, but I digress). Is this appropriate, and should Mass continue, even if Communion is still being given to the choir? thanks in advance for the insight!
I didn’t realize the choir could not sing during communion. I don’t know. I have usually noticed an organ or song being sung if a communion distribution was long. Are you sure?
Our choir always sings during communion.
Our previous pastor insisted that the choir stop singing after their first hymn which was about the time the EMHC arrived in the choir loft. Our new pastor wants them to sing three hymns while the EMHC waits for them to finish. He doesn’t mind waiting for the EMHC to get back from the choir loft after everyone below has already received. He is still at the altar purifying the chalice anyway. Our choir leaders and organists follow the direction of our pastor.
Nothing wrong with the EME bringing the Eucharist to the choir, and as far as I know, no reason they shouldn’t sing the Communion hymn (did I misunderstand your aside?). I would think it would be best to wait until any remnants are returned to the Tabernacle before going forward with the prayer after Communion, but if they are counting Hosts for the choir and so the ciborium is coming back empty I don’t think you would need to wait.
I doubt there is anything wrong with this. I do not have any documents in front of me to quote, but I know that at our parish, the deacon (after distributing communion) may begin to purify the chalice while the priests and EMHCs are still distributing communion to the last few people. This is especially true if one priest has taken communion to an elderly or handicapped person who may have trouble getting down to the altar.
Why don’t you ask your priest about this change? Just because a new priest in the parish has a slightly different way of doing things, doesn’t mean it is automatically incorrect.
I have no desire to ask about it. I was just pointing out that sometimes pastors do things a little different and like you said, just because a new pastor has a slightly different way of doing things doesn’t mean that it is automatically incorrect.
From the 2002 General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) approved for the USA, which can be accessed from romanrite.com/girm.html :
"86. While the priest is receiving the Sacrament, the Communion chant is begun. Its purpose is
to express the communicants’ union in spirit by means of the unity of their voices, to show joy
of heart, and to highlight more clearly the “communitarian” nature of the procession to receive
Communion. The singing is continued for as long as the Sacrament is being administered to the
faithful.74 If, however, there is to be a hymn after Communion, the Communion chant should be
ended in a timely manner.
Care should be taken that singers, too, can receive Communion with ease."
So both the singing and making the extra effort to give the choir Communion seem appropriate.
Now on the question: “should Mass continue, even if Communion is still being given to the choir?”. After Communion there is a prayer called “Prayer After Communion”. So no, it should not be said until after everyone has received Communion. Other things also need to be done: consuming any remaining Precious Blood, putting any consecrated hosts remaining in the tabernacle, either purifying the sacred vessels or covering them with a corporal (if they are to be purified after Mass). So the vessel being used to give Communion to the choir needs to be returned for this to happen.
I realize that chanting, or singing is allowed. I prefer silence. As far as the choir not coming to the Eucharist, it may be acceptable, but to me it seems arrogant. JMHO.:knight2:
Arrogant??? I don’t think so. They are doing what they are supposed to do (singing the Communion hymn while everyone receives) and the pastor is doing what the Church calls for (taking care that the singers can receive Communion with ease).