Went to mass today...couple of questions!

It wasn’t the first time I have attended mass but the first time in my current parish. One of the things the priest said was about those who do not take the “blood” but only the “body”. He said he wasn’t going to judge anyone as there were genuine reasons (I’m assuming things like alcoholism and infectious diseases) but encouraged those who could to take from the chalice also. However he also stated that the host contains all that is needed? Why do the Catholic Church think it’s OK to not partake of both (unless a genuine reason) especially given the real presence and the literal reading of “this is my body” “this is my blood”… take, eat/drink etc

Speaking of the real presence…I read one site which stated given the sacrificial nature of the mass, it doesn’t make sense since Christ instituted the lords supper before the crucifixion. Also he would have been breaking the Levitical (???) Law by consuming actual flesh and blood and since Jesus followed the laws, why would he break it?

How do those of you with young children manage during mass? I left my kids with the hubby today but would like to take them to church (when I decide where to go). 80% of the parish must be over 60/70. There were kids there but it was relatively quiet and my toddler is like a hurricane! Does not sit still!


The host is not just the body, and the chalice is not just the blood. Christ is considered fully present in body, blood, soul, and divinity under either species. And he can’t be divided. If I break the host in two, or three, or however many pieces, it’s not as if I have his head in one piece and his leg in another. Christ is fully present within each piece. Therefore, those who partake of only the host do fully receive Christ. Still, there’s something to be said about full sacramental participation in the sacrament instituted by Christ and partaking of both host and chalice.

The Last Supper is, in some ways, what gave the apostles the meaning of what happened on the cross. And I would not consider it a separate event either. What Christ did at the table was completed with his resurrection. And God is not bound by time. What Christ gave his apostles during that meal was Himself under the appearance of bread and wine; his full, glorified self.

As for Levitical Law. As pointed out above, Christ is not divided or broken up in the sacrament. He is fully present in each particle, unable to be destroyed or used up or killed. Therefore it is not cannibalism. As for consuming the blood, the proscription in the Old Law was not because it was profane but because the blood is the life. It was the blood that was sprinkled on the altar. It was the blood that was used for consecration. The Blood was reserved for God. The old ban can be seen as actually foreshadowing the Eucharist. By His blood, Christ shares with us his Divine life. In His Blood, Christ consecrated us to Himself and as temples of the Holy Spirit. Jesus was a Jew and kept the old law. However, he also came to fulfill the Law and bring about what the Law was made for. He did institute a new Passover, but it was not “out of the blue”, but a perfection of the “images” we had under the Old. Christ has the authority to bring about this fulfillment and institution of a new covenant. He did not break the law; he fulfilled it.


There are people who fear infecting others or fear being infected by others; some may even have a communicative disease; others may be perceived as having a communicative disease… all of these have genuine reasons to forgo the Blood. Yet, there might be those who do not think it is necessary or who may think it is overindulgence… these must reconsider–I think that these are the ones being addressed by the Priest.

Due to changes and circumstances the original practice of taking both Forms was laxed–regardless, Christ exist in both, Consecrated Bread and Consecrated Wine, Fully.

Speaking of the real presence…I read one site which stated given the sacrificial nature of the mass, it doesn’t make sense since Christ instituted the lords supper before the crucifixion. Also he would have been breaking the Levitical (???) Law by consuming actual flesh and blood and since Jesus followed the laws, why would he break it?

Sadly, too many Believers read through Scriptures and ignore the Holy Spirit’s Guidance… was Abraham not ordered to have every male in his camp circumcised–this was a pact under the first Covenant… Jesus offers a New Covenant… this Covenant is based on His Blood not the blood of man… St. Paul then Teaches that one must not submit to the prescription of the old Covenant (circumcision)… was St. Paul disregarding God’s Command? Jesus is God. The New Covenant is particularly dependent upon His Blood. It is He Who Commands that the true Believer must eat (I understand that the term used means chew/masticate) His Body/Flesh and drink His Blood; He states that His Body is real food and that His Blood is real drink…

…are these people cognizant of this? Reason is a good tool to wheel… bad reasoning involves man minus God; that is, the removal of God’s Inspiration (as in Guidance of the Holy Spirit). Yes, Jesus came to us a man under the Jewish Law… but did He not attest that He is the Lord of the Sabbath? Did He not clarify that true Believers would Worship in Spirit and Truth? Did He not purchase a Kingdom of Priests for the Father?

The Old Covenant with its prescriptions and ministers must pass away so that the New Covenant with its new prescriptions and its sole High Priest and King come into Being:

28 You yourselves do bear me witness, that I said, I am not Christ, but that I am sent before him. 29 He that hath the bride, is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, who standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth with joy because of the bridegroom’s voice. This my joy therefore is fulfilled. 30 He must increase, but I must decrease. 31 He that cometh from above, is above all. He that is of the earth, of the earth he is, and of the earth he speaketh. He that cometh from heaven, is above all. (St. John 3:38-31)

…and they do not understand the relationship of God and Israel, of the Law and the Promise:

24 Wherefore the law was our pedagogue in Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25 But after the faith is come, we are no longer under a pedagogue. 26 For you are all the children of God by faith, in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as have been baptized in Christ, have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek: there is neither bond nor free: there is neither male nor female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:24-28)

…the Law does not supersede the Promise!

How do those of you with young children manage during mass? I left my kids with the hubby today but would like to take them to church (when I decide where to go). 80% of the parish must be over 60/70. There were kids there but it was relatively quiet and my toddler is like a hurricane! Does not sit still!

…I find that most people do not engage their children about those things that were important waaaay back… manners… people teach children about their rights to “x, y, z;” they buy them the latest techs and tweaks… but they ignore teaching them about good manners, self-control, and respect… I doubt that much is being done on the field involving the House of God… few children seem to understand why they gather at their local parish (well, other than to leave the house and run around and make noise)… people come to Church as though they were on some outing (water, food, games, toys, tablets, phones…); children cannot but surmised that they are there to eat, run free, be entertained, meet and greet, and test every limit!

Begin by teaching your child about the Sacredness of the Holy Eucharist, the reason why you visit the House of God; the respect that must be rendered; the beauty of quietness, the joy of communal celebration of the Mass… if a toddler is cognizant enough to learn to swim and use a computer, why is it that grownups think that they must wait till the child is in high school before it can be taught about God?


Each species is Christ, body, blood, soul, and divinity. You can receive either.

because it IS ok.

Christ is fully presented in each species. Each is fully the Eucharist.

A site with no understanding of Catholic theology. I would encourage you to read the Catechism for an accurate description of the Catholic teaching on the Eucharist and other topics.

Jesus is God. He certainly could institute the Eucharist before his death since God is not bound by time or space.

The Eucharist is not “actual flesh and blood”.

Well, by the time the chalice got to me on one occasion, it was empty. The little lady next to me had a fit! I don’t worry about not being able to receive both species on rare occasions. If I can, I am very happy:). If not, I had the intent. Peace.

Others have answered this for you here in that the body, blood, soul, and divinity are present wholly within either form.

Several ways and it depends on the parish family and your situation.
For us, early on with twins, that’s a handful when they were three-ish, and if they were really in bad moods, such as when ill or sleepy, one of us would go to Mass with the older kids and then the other would attend a later Mass. However, in my parish there are a lot of families and we often sit together and the younger girls like to hold the babies, plenty of Grandma and Grandpa types that like to hold the babies and help to keep the toddlers under control so it all worked out - we have a very good and loving parish family.

Two things that really helped, sitting at the front of the church. Kids like to see the action, and IMHO, sitting that close to God helps them to behave :slight_smile: and we have such a rich celebration of the Mass, let them see the priest consecrate the Host, Elevate it, see the candles and smell the incense… these things will help make real for the little-ones what we already have a grasp of; and second, if you said toddler, nap or go to a Mass as close to when the little-one wakes up as possible, being tired tends to bring the worst out in people and is more so in little-ones as they haven’t developed good coping skills at their age.

IMHO, kid is sick or overly tired, trade-off on who gets to go to Mass by themselves that Sunday, otherwise, take the kid to Mass, don’t worry about anyone’s dirty looks because those of us with kids understand, you bear great witness to the faith, and they can’t learn how to behave in a situation if they are not exposed to that situation.

I really like the taste of wine, and it can be a bit distracting when I receive the Precious Blood. Just receiving the host allows me to better appreciate the sacrament.

We have three children (oldest is five) and this fits in well with our experience. We bring a coloring page for the bigger kids (they aren’t the type to scribble on walls) and a board book for the youngest to look at. Stickers are also a neat option. Something that keeps their fingers busy that doesn’t make a mess. :wink:

People have already given great answers, but if you’re a big reader like I am I can give some recommendations. The best book I have found on the subject of Catholic Eucharistic theology is Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist by Brent Pitre. It’s in-depth but compulsively readable-I blasted through it in one sitting with my heart pounding! Highly recommended. I would also suggest Four Witnesses by Rod Bennett to get a sense of the early Church’s attitude towards many Catholic beliefs. Good luck on your journey!!

Hey True_Faith13. You got some great questions here that are really interesting!

Here’s some important background to the Eucharist. Jesus’ death is a sacrifice because of the Eucharist (if it wasn’t for the Eucharist, the opponents of Christians would be able to say that Christ’s death was, at best, a martyrdom, and that we’ve somehow made it into a sacrifice). The Eucharist, instituted before the crucifixion, was what is called an anamnestic sacrifice, which is a mystical point of re-entry into, and a re-presentation of, a sacred act made at a certain point in time.

Anamnesis is a part of the Old Testament Jewish Tradition. An example is the Old Covenant priests eating the “bread of the presence” (12 consecrated loaves symbolic of each of the the twelve tribes, upon the golden altar in the Priestly Sanctury (not in the Holy of Holies, but immediately before it, where no lay Jew could go). This was an anamnesis of Moses, Aaron, Aaron’s sons, and the 70 elders of Israel ascending Mount Sinai to see God and eat and drink in his Presence (Exodus 24). The idea behind this sacrificial reality was that, each time the priests ate and drank this bread on the golden altar, they were, mystically BUT LITERALLY at that same moment where Moses and the others did so with God on Sinai. The same is true for the Passover ritual too. Later generations of Jews ate it “with their loins girded, with their staff in their hands,” etc. Why? Because when they celebrated the Passover, they were mystically BUT LITERALLY right there back in Egypt, experiencing God’s deliverance from slavery and idolatry.

Jesus, too, celebrates the Passover, and fulfills it, in an anamnestic way, but this time, instead of pointing backwards, he points forward to his cross and resurrection. All the hints and preparations of the Passover find their fulfilment in the Last Supper. He makes Himself the New Passover Lamb that must be eaten (this is also related to Himself in the Holy Spirit…check out my post entitled “Eucharist, Trinity, Holy Spirit, Temple, Body of Christ, Theosis idea” for more details). He makes the Third Passover Cup of wine into his atoning, New Covenant-Making Blood. The New Passover, interestingly, is not completed at the Last Supper because on the cross he drinks the Fourth Passover Cup of wine, called the “Cup of Wrath” (when they give him vinegar which, here, is actually sour, cheap wine) for our sake. He completes the entire anamnesis, however, when he is resurrected with the two disciples at Emmaus, a fulfilment of the Old Covenant Feast of Unleavened Bread (Luke 24).

In all of this, the Eucharist both works with the cross and resurrection, and, yet, is an anamnesis of it too, since the bloody sacrifice on the cross is represented by the fact that there is a separate presentation of his Body and Blood. He first says “this is my Body” and then later says “this is my Blood” instead of saying “this is my Body and my Blood.” The separate focussing on each, for the Jewish mind, would have reminded one of the fact that when the body is separated from the blood, this means that a living thing is dead. And this is especially true within the Temple sacrifices: the blood of the sacrifice was drained and separated from the body, and this separation both indicated that a sacrifice was being made, as well as enabled both the blood and the body of the sacrificial animal to have their own important sacrificial meanings.

WITH ALL OF THIS NOW IN MIND I WILL NOW DO MY BEST TO ANSWER YOUR ORIGINAL QUESTIONS: the Eastern Church always partakes of both the Body and the Blood, but the Western (Roman Catholic) Church developed a slightly different insight into the matter. In both East and West, both the Body and Blood must be offered, but within the Roman Catholic Western Church the priest alone must consume both because he acts in the Person of Christ at certain parts of the Mass. The moment that best represents the sacrificial moment of Christ’s death is precisely the separate focusing on “this is my Body” and, later, “this is my Blood,” as mentioned earlier. When these are said, it is that exact moment, a re-entry and re-presentation of that moment wherein Christ died for us. Without this, according to the Roman Catholic Church, Christ’s Eucharistic Sacrifice does not take place (the Assyrian Church of the East, another separated ancient Church within the East, however, does not have “this is my Body” and “this is my Blood” but their Liturgy was still recognized as truly anamnestic by Pope John Paul II…this is clearly a special case). While the priest must offer the Sacrifice, acting in the Person of Christ, and eating therein, the lay people are not ordained priests. There is, therefore, a distinction that was made between “performing the Sacrifice” and receiving the “Sacrament” (it’s like two sides of the same coin, so to speak). The Sacrifice is the Sacrament, but certain people perform certain parts of it (priests both re-present the Sacrifice and receive the Sacrament, yet the lay people, or even other clergy present but not presiding over the Liturgy, receive just the Sacrament). Eucharistic Sacrifice + Eucharist Sacrament = Same Eucharist. Remember, the Roman Church makes distinctions in order to unite. Within the Sacramental aspect of the Eucharist, Jesus is fully present under either the Body or the Blood because we are eating the resurrected Christ (his Body and Blood, which were separated, are reunited in his resurrection). By eating just the Body, you also are drinking the Blood, even though you didn’t actually partake of the Chalice. The Church, however, allows priests to distribute both the Body and the Blood, should the priest desire to do so. Another argument in favor of distributing only the Body is that the priest risks spilling the Blood. I hope this makes sense.

All of this, so far, provides an answer to the questions raised by the website that you mentioned.

Now in regards to the Old Testament Law against consuming “the flesh WITH the blood” of an animal, it will be shown that Jesus, the same God present in the Old Testament, did not break his own law. The prohibition against eating the flesh with the blood was a penitential secondary law, added alongside of the True Law (the 10 Commandments and original Liturgical Laws) because of the golden calf idolatry episode. Jesus had to quarantine the people from even further from idolatry, so he instituted this law. But why? Many idolatrous rituals, which the Israelites were addicted to within Egypt, involved consuming blood with the flesh of the sacrificial animal because, even for the pagans too, “the life/soul/power was in the blood.” If you wanted, say, the fierceness of a lion in order to cause fear in your enemies…drink its blood, sacrificially (that’s my own made up example to illustrate the point). It was forbidden because idolatrous sacrificial worship and partaking of idolatrous sacrifices were a communion with demons, leading to possible demonic possessions in the life of their worshippers. Within the New Covenant, however, Jesus fulfils this distorted but anticipatory longing of the pagans, by making the Eucharist not just a Banquet shared with Jesus, but also Jesus’ own Blood, containing his Divine Life and Power. He wants us to receive these. Jesus did not break his law. He fulfilled it. Just to note, however, eating blood (in terms of pagan sacrifice) is also condemned in Acts 15, however, again, this is only in terms of idolatrous sacrifice. If you are, like my wife, a fan of blood pudding, go ahead and eat it! lol…there’s no idolatry therein since there’s no idolatrous sacrificing going on!

Concerning your children in Mass: the same is true with my son. We usually take him in the exterior part of the Church (the part just before the doors leading into the actual place were the pews are) and let him run and play all he wants. Since not every parish is like that, you can also try to keep him in his stroller and just walk up and down the back part of the Church, behind the last rows of pews. It calms my son down. Don’t worry though. Your children are in their Father’s house! The Mass is the fulfilment of the Jewish Temple as well as the synagogue, and synagogues were also places of fun and recreation. I’m not bothered at all by that. But many people feel that if there isn’t reverent silence, Jesus is being disrespected (not true). But, for their sake, in order to keep peace and unity, try to preserve the reverent silence.

Sorry for the long reply. I can’t help but love talking about all of this! May God Bless you!


…your posts are very engaging!

…I specially loved the concluding thought–people seem to be ignorant of the fact that the Command is to prevent “idolatry” not the ingestion of food!

Maran atha!


Thanks for the kind words, angel! It’s the same with the famous commandment not to mix meat and dairy.

God Bless

Thanks for all of your replies!

In terms of the chapel itself. It doesn’t really have an exterior bit (it technically does but it’s a small arch). It’s a really nice chapel but very small. If I take both my children, I would need to take the double buggy. I might be able to sit at the front to the side but I’m not sure if that area is sacred? It has a statue if Mary with candles, the doors to what I think is the confessional and another bit which I can’t remember now (sorry I’m not very good at knowing what’s what in a Catholic Church. The middle aisle is the only one big enough for two people to walk down (just) and is probably the only one the buggy would fit down to get to the front. I could potentially sit at the back, there isn’t really room to walk the buggy up and down though. The one side of pewss goes right to the back with a slightly bigger gap between two rows to get to the side aisle behind the middle aisle is the musical instruments and on Sunday the small space between the book shelves behind the other aisle was taken up by people :shrug:

I am trying to teach my 21 month old how sometimes you need to be still, quiet but they don’t understand over night unfortunately.

Just watching the daily mass on EWTN and it got me thinking about missing mass without a reason being a motrtal sin. Im assuming EWTN doesnt fulfill the obligation of mass?

You are correct. Watching Mass on television does not fulfill the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation.

However, there are spiritual benefits to watching Mass on EWTN or other electronic media outlet. For instance, those who watch or listen a live electronic broadcast of a Mass would receive the blessing given during the concluding rite of the Mass. Although one does not receive the blessing when watching or listening to a rerun, watching or listening to a rerun of a Mass can still be a source of grace.


…let’s take it from the last statement… of course not! …we, even grown ups, are hardheads (Yahweh warns that Israel will choose other gods [those who are not the True God] instead of Him… we keep doing so!); but we, specially toddlers, are eager to learn and be part of a greater world… there’s in innate need for growth and equally innate sense of pride and accomplishment every time we gain growth… patiently training your children about God and the Church is just as important as every other of life’s lessons.

Remember, we learn mostly by imitation; not as much by the technical mechanisms–that is: ‘do as I say’ just goes in one ear and out the other; ‘do as I do…’ well that sticks to the ribs!

…you may also extend your Faith-life to the home by creating a domestic altar in a corner of the house/apartment where discipline is practiced (silence, prayer, meditation, Bible study).

…also, just as it is rewarding to recognize even the smallest of achievements (first steps, words, etc.), I think that it is extremely important to reward, lavishly, spiritual achievements (recognizing phrases, gestures, and sing-a-longs of the Mass Rituals).

Also, training/retraining the mind to think “God” not “recreation” or “punishment” is extremely essential.

…in most parishes that I’ve visited there are accommodations made for families with young children–less your chapel fills to capacity one of the pews could be removed or shorten to allow for the buggy; still, this is an alteration that takes commitment (on your part: you must not be a sampler Christian [you know, jump over here or there or over there] but a committed parishioner [in for the long-haul]; on the parish part: accommodation for the benefit of posterity [the longevity of both parish and parishioners]).

Maran atha!


Receiving the Body and the Blood Under One Species

1 Co 11:23-29
For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant of my blood; do this, whenever you drink of it, in remembrance of me.” For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. Therefore, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself.”

Paul says that anyone who eats OR drinks in an unworthy manner sins against both the body AND the blood. IOW, if you eat the bread unworthily, you sin against the body and blood


if you drink the cup unworthily, you sin against the body and the blood.

The body, blood, soul and divinity of Christ are fully contained in both species.

Therefore, there is no problem for parishioners who do not receive the cup.

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