Services without a Priest


#1

I've been going to Mass daily during Lent and this morning I attended a Mass at a nieghboring parsh since I was in that nieghborhood. Well, it wasn't a Mass. I assumed there was a Deacon present though he wasn't in a deacon's vestments (I don't think is would matter would it?) but what struck me as being very strange is a lady opened the tabernacle, brought Eucharist to the altar and elevated the host, led us in the centurian's prayer and then self communicated, and then gave communion to the Deacon(?)
I've been an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion for years and I didn't think we where allowed to elevate the Host or self communicate. So I'm wondering, was she the Deacon?:confused:


#2

You might want to double check if that was a 'Roman" Catholic Church. We have a ‘Catholic Church’ in our community that is not Roman Catholic, I think the ‘priest’ or whatever he calls himself is an ex-Roman Catholic priest. He started his own church, apparently the service is similar to our Mass.


#3

Sounds very strange. I sure hope she wasn’t the deacon because I’m pretty sure that’s not possible. Correct me if I’m wrong. First time I ever hear of this.


#4

It sounds like a communion service. They are done in the absence of a priest and can be led by a deacon or layperson.


#5

Its Roman Catholic alright—and a well established (circa 1930s) parish in our Diocese and listed in the diocese parish directory. Another point is that the priest (who was absent) is a canon lawyer for our diocese, so I wouldn’t think anything out of the ordinary would be happening----but this is really disturbing me. I’m sure Deacons can administer Holy Communion in the absence of the priest but I just don’t understand what was going on and I’m concerned. Perhaps there is a deacon here who can tell me?


#6

Deacons can conduct a Liturgy of the Word with Holy Communion (i.e. readings plus communion - no consecration) as can extraordinary ministers.

However presuming that a deacon was present then it would / should have been him leading the service. Given what else you’ve said, it may be that there wasn’t in fact a deacon present.

Other than that, everything else is fine. In these services there’s really no other way for the person presiding to receive other than self-communication!


#7

First off, if the man present was a deacon then he is at best ignorant of what should take place, at worst doesn’t care. If he is a deacon he himself should conduct this service with proper vestments which in this type of service are alb and a stole with the dalmatic omitted because it is not a Mass and using all the proper form and rubrics provided in the liturgical books.

If he was not a deacon then the lay ministers can and do conduct these types of services with some small adaptations for the simple fact that they are not ordained; such as the penitential right and the blessing. The laity cannot confer a blessing as a deacon or priest. But yes, they can go to the tabernacle and self communicate, the presider only, and distribute Holy Communion.

Another difference is they are not to give a “homily”. But they can give a “reflection”. I know, this is a matter of semantics but none the less it is the guidelines.

Here’s what I would suggest, since it is a neighboring parish there must be someone you know that you can ask about the man whether he is a deacon or not, go talk with that person. If it is learned that he is a deacon, I beg you to confront him in charity and let him know about your concerns; next to the pastor if needed, then lastly to the diocese office of worship if absolutely necessary.

Last thought, she was definitely not a deacon; women cannot receive holy orders, never have and never will. Women cannot be validly ordained, it is not possible.


#8

:thumbsup:


#9

Thank you!


#10

[quote="InThePew, post:6, topic:319357"]
Deacons can conduct a Liturgy of the Word with Holy Communion (i.e. readings plus communion - no consecration) as can extraordinary ministers.

However presuming that a deacon was present then it would / should have been him leading the service. Given what else you've said, it may be that there wasn't in fact a deacon present.

Other than that, everything else is fine. In these services there's really no other way for the person presiding to receive other than self-communication!

[/quote]

Deacons can certainly lead communion services, but if a deacon was present and a woman did it, that is a liturgical abuse for sure.

By the way, women are not ordained deacons in the Catholic Church.


closed #11

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