Quick question regarding Eucharist

I’m a Knight (as my signature indicates), and I am also an Usher at my Church. In addition to taking up the collection, we also hold the Paten for the Eucharist as the Eucharistic Ministers distribute it.

One thing I’ve noticed that always gets me…is that when they recieve the Eucharist, some people don’t say ‘Amen’. They usually just nod slightly or don’t even say anything at all.

If they have had proper instruction and made their Sacraments, shouldn’t they know to do this? or is it optional?

The way I learned in CCD, was to…say ‘Amen’, recieve the Eucharist, step to the side, make the Sign of the Cross, and then head back to the pew.

So why don’t other people say ‘Amen’ when recieving Eucharist?

This is an issue which requires ongoing catechesis in most parishes. Everyone should show some sign of reverence before receiving. This is usually a small bow, but genuflection is also acceptable. When the priest or minister says “The Body/Blood of Christ,” the communicant should respond “Amen” before receiving.

People should also learn how to receive properly: if using the standard, universal method (on the tongue), open the mouth and extend the tongue so the Host can be placed upon it; if receiving in the hand, place one open palm on top of the other and use the bottom hand to reverently place the Host in the mouth. Those receiving in the hand should consume the Body of Christ immediately and not walk away with it, and are obliged to insure that any remaining particles on their hand are consumed. Intinction, which is the standard practice in most Eastern Rites of the Church, is allowed in the Latin Rite only when the priest or minister intincts (dips) the Host and places it on the communicant’s tongue. By no means should a communicant dip the Host into the Precious Blood himself.

At my parish, a brief overview of these things is given to the people at the end of Mass every few months.

Great answer. Michael Voris on RealCatholicTV.com just issued an episode of the Vortex that nailed this subject. It was great.

Ongoing catachesis is the answer I believe.

I am so glad to know I am not the only person that this bothers. Speak to your Pastor and he could add it into the Liturgical Commitee. Our Parish has a laundry list of things that the Priest or Parishioners see as lacking.
It could be mentioned in a bulletin or as part of a Homily. Either way would get some people to listen. But unfortunately not all. As some do not understand what exactly it is they receive. Sad but true.

Our pastor has talked about this very openly and honestly - some say it audibly - some say it spiritually. Amen means “I believe.” Really we may not hear it but we don’t hear all prayers either. On this I will be much more comfortable taking my instruction from someone who is a first order Religious than someone like Michael Voris who cherry picks his quotes quite liberally.

most people probably say it but inaudibly or even silently
we have found when preparing both children and adults for first communion they are often nervous and it is hard to remember to both make a sign of reverence, and to say amen, and to hold their hands or their head just right. Since it does not affect the validity of the sacrament nor limit its effects it is not worth fretting over. Having been to parishes all over this and other dioceses we also notice that instruction the faithful receive on matters such as this, raising or holding hands, when to kneel or genuflect, whether or not to say audibly anything immediately after the consecration etc etc etc vary from parish to parish and priest to priest. Each new priest either accepts the customs of that parish, or instructs them to do it his way. I know for instance all the parishes where our former pastor served by what the people do during the Our Father, and I can track another priest by how they enter and leave the pews and say audibly “My Lord and My God” after the consecration. The problem is not always poor or no catechesis, it often is too much confusing and conflicting catechesis.

Perhaps they’re more familiar with the EF form, in which the priest says Amen instead.

Perhaps you cannot hear “Amen” over the singing.

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.”

“159. The Communion chant begins while the priest is receiving the Sacrament (cf. above, no. 86).”

“161. If Communion is given only under the species of bread, the priest raises the host slightly and shows it to each, saying, Corpus Christi (The Body of Christ). The communicant replies, Amen, and receives the Sacrament either on the tongue or, where this is allowed and if the communicant so chooses, in the hand. As soon as the communicant receives the host, he or she consumes it entirely.”

In the traditional rite the priest says:

The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ preserve thy soul unto life everlasting. Amen.

and the receiver only sticks out his/her tongue,

The new rite explicitly requires the faithful to say Amen, otherwise the minister should ask: Are you Catholic?

Practically I believe that receiving the communion on tongue and saying Amen results in danger that the minister displaces the host, what happened once with my grandson. I believe to avoid danger is more important than a new antiquiarist rite, and never say Amen.

Here is the tradition of the Amen (associated with communion of hand) from St Cyril of Jerusalem:

  1. In approaching therefore, come not with your wrists extended, or your fingers spread; but make your left hand a throne for the right, as for that which is to receive a King. And having hollowed your palm, receive the Body of Christ, saying over it, Amen. So then after having carefully hallowed your eyes by the touch of the Holy Body, partake of it; giving heed lest you lose any portion thereof ; for whatever you lose, is evidently a loss to you as it were from one of your own members. For tell me, if any one gave you grains of gold, would you not hold them with all carefulness, being on your guard against losing any of them, and suffering loss? Will you not then much more carefully keep watch, that not a crumb fall from you of what is more precious than gold and precious stones?


I thought the translation was “verily, or in truth”
Our Pastor said in a Sermon once that it also means “Yes, What has been spoken is true.”
ie “This is the Body of Christ”…“Amen”

It can be both - it depends on whether it is pronounced with A-men or Ah-men.

No, I don’t think the pronunciation changes the meaning. Is that written somewhere?

I thought the ah-men v. ay-men was more to do with an Irish influence i.e. the Irish traditionally say ay-men.

Here you go- newadvent.org/cathen/01407b.htm - I believe you will find that the pronouciation difference will come between the Latin and the Greek - I was wrong though it is not the I believe - It is “verily” so please mea culpa.

Either way it is a small thing to worry about as long as the general point is made either physically or spiritually.

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