SPLIT: Faulty Sacraruim--What should be done?

I have two situations in my Parish which I am concerned about: After Purification the Sacred Vessels are cleaned in the sacrsty with soap and water and poured down a
common drain because the sacraruim is not working properly. I have pointed out that this
is wrong and have been told that the problem is being worked on but there doesn’t appear
to be any rush to fix the problem. Also, at Eucharistic Adoration, an EMHC is allowed to
to take the Host out of the Tabernacle and place it in the Monstrance and then place the Host back in the Tabernacle when the service is over because a priest is not available at that time. Is this allowed?:confused:

Lacking a sacrarium, the proper procedure would be to rinse the purificators in a basin and pour the rinse water onto the ground. Then they may washed in the ordinary manner.

Not sure about the adoration question. I am a layperson who has been asked on two occasions to repose the Blessed Sacrament when a priest was not available. I complied, trusting the chapel personnel’s knowledge.


Can someone describe the sacrarium from a plumbing standpoint for me? I thought it was pretty much a straight flow into the earth? Oughtta be fairly simple device to fix, no?

Usually, it’s a line run to a small area of subteranean gravel (usually placed there in constructing it). A sacrarium in a place with high-clay soils or on bedrock needs special attentions, since the soil itself is likely to be relatively impermeable.

Some are straight to a gravel filled pit under the foundation; others run to a spot away from the building.

The gravel allows the flow to dissipate into a much larger area of soil.

The plumbing problems can include:
[list]*]frozen contents
*]root intrusion
*]impermeable soils
*]groundwater rise above exit point
*]leaks due to mechanical damage (possbily as a result of thermal expansion or earthquake)


I am not sure what should happen when the sacrarium is broken or unavailable. I think I read somewhere the purifications should be thrown on to a fire.

An instituted acolyte and a commissioned extraordinary minister of holy communion can expose the Blessed Sacrament for adoration and they can repose the Blessed Sacrament. They cannot give the Eucharistic Blessing. I’m not sure if other laypersons may do this.

If the vessels have been purified already (and you say they have been), then there is no need for the sacrarium. The Blood of Christ is no longer present because of the process of purifying the vessels that already occured. And so it is OK to use the common drain. All you are doing with the soap and water is washing the vessels.

Yes, assuming he has the pastor’s permission. He may not process with the Sacrament, or give a blessing with it. I don’t have a source at hand, but that has been the usual answer from reliable sources when the question has been asked elsewhere.

Well, quite.

In our parish, the water used for purifying the vessels (that is to say, just the plain water used by whoever empties then purifies the vessels by circling the water round the chalices to remove any trace of the Precious Blood) is then drunk, so the sacrarium is not used

After Mass, the vessels are washed with washing up liquid and water to remove any lipstick, and the water goes down the drain.

The purificators go in a laundry basket to be washed in a normal way, unless they have been used to mop up any Precious Blood (extrememly rare), in which case they are rinsed in three changes of water to make sure that any traces of the Accidents are removed i.e. the colour, or smell, There is absolutely no need to burn them.

Yes, according to the Rite for Eucharistic Exposition and Benediction in Holy Communion and the Worship of the Eucharist Outside of Mass

In the absence of a priest or deacon or if they are lawfully impeded, the following persons may publicly expose and later repose the Eucharist for the adoration of the faithful:
a. an acolyte or special minister of communion;
b. upon appointment by the local Ordinary, a member of a religious community or of a pious association of laymen or laywomen which is devoted to Eucharistic adoration.

Just a suggestion—
If something with the sacrarium is broken, why not offer to give a donation to fix it? You are a part of your parish and I am sure you are concerned with the church building (it seems like it by your post). See if the priest was able to get a plumber to come in and fix it and if not, offer to take the project on yourself. Perhaps the parish even has a plumber in it that would offer to do it for free.

You don’t have to wait for the priest to get on top of stuff— offer your assistance in any way possible. :slight_smile:

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