Receiving communion in the hand using a purificator?

I have considered that.

This actually makes a whole lot of sense. My comments about crumbs, particles the size of a letter on a screen, or particles the size of the head on a tailor’s pin, presuppose that you can tell they have sloughed off from a larger portion of “bread”. A little dot the size of the period at the end of this sentence, there is some room for doubt. Mere dust, I think it’s fair to say the Real Presence is no longer “there”.

Depends on how large and visible the flecks are. See above.

I would really like to know, if for no other reason than my own edification, who decided we no longer needed to use patens. I have served many a Mass, both TLM and Novus Ordo, using a paten. I have seen many fragments fall upon the paten, and once or twice, the Host Itself.

It depends if they are visible as bread. Fleck could be many things, a fleck on it’s own does not look like anything except a shade of color.

Looking through the GIRM, it appears that the duty of an acolyte is no longer described as carrying a paten as the priest distributes Communion. The mention of an acolyte in terms of distribution is a reference to an instituted acolyte, and the reference is that they may assist the priest in distributing communion.

And while the GIRM does not address getting rid of altar rails, it states the norm is receiving standing. "160. The priest then takes the paten or ciborium and goes to the communicants, who, as a rule, approach in a procession.

The faithful are not permitted to take the consecrated bread or the sacred chalice by themselves and, still less, to hand them from one to another. The norm for reception of Holy Communion in the dioceses of the United States is standing. Communicants should not be denied Holy Communion because they kneel. Rather, such instances should be addressed pastorally, by providing the faithful with proper catechesis on the reasons for this norm."

Jesus doesn’t need a purificator. He’s as pure as they come, and purer.

I have bad knees, and if I got down on them in a communion line without a kneeler, I might not be able to get back up. I only kneel if there’s a communion rail (normally at the TLM), to give me something to brace myself on, getting down and then back up.

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Okay, but if Pavel Chekov is the altar server, they’re called wessels.

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The purificator is to “purify” one’s hands and the sacred vessels. It does not “purify” Our Lord.

I take it you’re a Trekkie.

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Why, yes I am.
Although I more resemble a wookie!
(Except the top of my head. I’m becoming quite adept at “buzzing” my own hair until this stay-at-home business ends - which in L.A. may never happen?!) :grimacing:

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This is why I say that:

…and this is just L.,A. County - not even the whole Archdiocese!
Over the years I have become an ITH communicant for no good reason other than convenience, but I understand the more reverent culture, too.

At this point, I’d be happy to just sit in my Church alone and meditate!

You should probably stay home until you feel less fearful.

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I’m not trying to talk you out of it, and you should certainly follow the dictates of your conscience. That said, I’ve never fully understood this idea that touching the Host with your hands is somehow irreverent or disrespectful or presumptuous. Communion is us literally taking His flesh into our body. Next to that, touching Him with our hand seems pretty trivial.


Fearful? Of what exactly?

It’s not conscience, it’s just strong, strong preference, for what in my mind are very good reasons.

To my knowledge, the Church has never had a binding doctrine or teaching one way or the other on a layperson touching the Sacred Host. St Thomas Aquinas did have quite a bit to say about it (he opposed it), but by himself, he is not the teaching Church. Nonetheless, was he right, or was he wrong? If he was wrong, why was he wrong? (See the end of this post.)

The whole “not touching the Host” thing largely revolves around the inability (because of logistics) of each layperson to purify their hands, and to inspect for fragments (arguably they could do this), after having handled the Host. Traditionally (there goes my favorite adverb again!), the priest himself kept his thumb and index finger tightly pressed together until he purified them after communion. Some still do. In the EF, I believe it is even part of the rubrics — I’d have to look it up — but even if it’s not, it is universal practice in the EF.

This whole “to CITH or not to CITH” thing has been done to death, so at this point I’m just going to hand the mike over to the Angelic Doctor himself, take it away, STA.

…because out of reverence towards this sacrament, nothing touches it, but what is consecrated; hence the corporal and the chalice are consecrated, and likewise the priest’s hands, for touching this sacrament. Hence it is not lawful for anyone else to touch it except from necessity, for instance, if it were to fall upon the ground, or else in some other case of urgency.

Note that not even Aquinas says that a layperson may never, ever touch the Blessed Sacrament.

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Just some food for thought here. Unfortunately, the article is in Italian — I couldn’t find an English version — but if you will run this through Google Translate, you will get a serviceable English translation. It’s just a little clumsy, but you can read it and make sense of it.

I would hasten to add, that fragments too small to be seen by the naked eye, only arguably remain the Body of Christ, and the smaller these fragments get, the less the likelihood. Simply put, no appearance of bread, no Body of Christ. But fragments of 1-2mm are definitely large enough to be seen unaided.

Yes, it is part of the rubrics.

Our Priest does this. I happened to notice it one day and since then have paid attention and seen that he always does this.

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Great quote!

I forget where I read this but here goes:

In China, the communists broke into a chapel and threw the ciborium on the floor, with the Hosts scattered on the floor :scream:. A young girl would sneak into the chapel every day on her knees, bend down and using ONLY her tongue consumed 1 Host a day. She did this every day. On the day that she consumed the last Host, the communists came again and killed her in the chapel.


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I have read this story before. I hope it is apocryphal, because I hate to think of an innocent young girl dying in that fashion. Clearly, per Aquinas (as well as just a common sensus catholicus), she could have picked up the Hosts and replaced Them in the ciborium, or to preserve Them from further sacrilege, she could have just self-communicated herself all of Them at once. But, if the story is true, she didn’t know that. “Back in the day” (another phrase I use a lot, as I noted earlier today), the faithful were not generally taught that they could touch a Host to preserve It from sacrilege, if there were an emergency such as this one, with no priest available.

Afaik, it’s a true story. (This was when the Communists were taking over China, so mid-20th century.)

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