White wine for communion?


#1

A Protestant friend told me his church uses white wine for communion. I have never seen this in a Catholic Church. Is it ever used?


#2

Yes, many parishes use white wine. Red or white - it doesn’t matter.


#3

[quote="Eugenius, post:1, topic:347969"]
A Protestant friend told me his church uses white wine for communion. I have never seen this in a Catholic Church. Is it ever used?

[/quote]

I've seen it different times, as well. I think red would be preferable, more to remind us it's the blood of Christ, though.


#4

It's licit, yes, but I've never seen it used. Maybe it's a cultural thing.


#5

Most dioceses have a list of wines of all types and colors approved for liturgical use. White wine is often used to avoid stains on altar linens, while red wine is often used precisely because it can be seen on linens.


#6

White wine goes well with fish after a Friday Mass! :D


#7

My parish uses a white wine variety. The story went that scholarship showed that wine in the time and place of Christ was almost all white, and so it was much more likely that He had used white wine at the Last Supper and other places, so we followed suit.

Also, I am sure the ladies who clean the altar linens were pleased :thumbsup:


#8

[quote="Elizium23, post:7, topic:347969"]
I am sure the ladies who clean the altar linens were pleased :thumbsup:

[/quote]

Amen to that.

As the person responsible for the care of about 40% of all the altar linen in my three-church parish **and **the pastor's personal altar linen, I am thankful we use white wine! :yeah_me:


#9

Wouldn't it be proper to use red wine; since that is the type used in the Jewish Passover? :confused:


#10

When I was an Altar Boy, some 65 years ago in a Jesuit parish, they use an amber colored wine similar in color to French Sauterne. A similar wine was used at Mass, by Navy Chaplains when I was in the service.


#11

It just has to be grape wine.


#12

I have a medal of a Eucharistic miracle that occurred in Boxtel, Holland, where my grandfather was born and raised. (The medal belonged to my grandfather.) The priest had been using white wine, and some of the Sacred Blood spilled on the floor. The stain on the marble was RED.


#13

[quote="ClearWater, post:3, topic:347969"]
I've seen it different times, as well. I think red would be preferable, more to remind us it's the blood of Christ, though.

[/quote]

That was never the intention, although it is an understandable mistake.

My parish priest in London was quite an afficionado at wines (and also one of the clearest priests on the liturgy I have worked with - in fact, the parish had a live-in liturgist) and we get eucharist under both species every Sunday. He never use altar wine - taste awful, with all due respect to the nuns or anyone else involve in the manufacture. He knows where to get the best cheap wine (from Sainsbury) and we get white wine sometimes. Once, we ran out of wine in the sacristy, and so we got sherry from his locker upstairs (his quarters were above the church).


#14

Our parish uses a fortified sweet white wine. In fact, the only time I have ever seen red wine was in a Lutheran Church in Germany.


#15

[quote="po18guy, post:11, topic:347969"]
It just has to be grape wine.

[/quote]

Regulated with a mininum level of alchohol content (so that it will not spoil) and a maximum level (for obvious reasons).


#16

[quote="jimkhong, post:15, topic:347969"]
Regulated with a mininum level of alchohol content (so that it will not spoil) and a maximum level (for obvious reasons).

[/quote]

Canon law doesn't comment at all on alcohol content. Most of the Communion wine we use has the same alcohol content as the wines we buy for personal consumption.


#17

[quote="Phemie, post:16, topic:347969"]
Canon law doesn't comment at all on alcohol content. Most of the Communion wine we use has the same alcohol content as the wines we buy for personal consumption.

[/quote]

Not in Canon Law but in an obscure 19th century directive from what was then the Congregation of the Inquisition (Did I tell you my London parish priest knows his liturgy?). You are allowed to add alchohol to weak wine to avoid it from spoiling, provided the alchohol is from grapes. I can't remember the actual figure but it was 2% or 2.5%, I think. The maximum was 18%. Does anyone know the name of the directive and has a English translation?

If I am not mistaken, there was also an exception to the minimum level rule (the rule is there purely to avoid souring or spoiling) where the priest is alchoholic. Anyone have the reference?


#18

I was about to mention the Eucharistic miracle from Holland. I went to Boxtel and yes, the priest was using white wine and after consagration it spilled. There was a red stain on the marble and red stains in the chaliz too.


#19

Our parish uses red and the downtown basilica uses blush. But I've also been to a parish that uses white and one where it looked and tasted like sherry.


#20

All are equally valid. I have all the above (including the sherry) in one parish.

I believe only the Eastern Churches require the wine to be red.


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