Wouldn't Jesus share His meal?

In yesterday’s mass (June 26), the priest talked about hospitality. That made me think about Christ sharing meals with sinners, such as the tax collector.

How is it that Christ had no qualms about sharing meals with sinners, but the Church doesn’t allow just anyone to take Communion?

Also, I remember reading somewhere that we need to be in a “state of grace” to take Communion. What does that mean? If I haven’t been to Reconcilation in many, many, many years, am I still allowed to take communion?


Dear CJ,

First of all, we don’t take Communion. We receive it. It is a gift. Secondly, it is not just a meal. Jesus did not go around sharing the Eucharist as if it were dinner. He instituted it at a very intimate moment with those who were closest to Him and appreciated who He is. St. Paul warns about receiving His Body and Blood unworthily.

To be in the state of grace means to be free of all mortal sin. To receive Him in the state of mortal sin is itself another mortal sin. You are welcome to receive Him in Holy Communion AFTER you examined you conscience and gone to Confession since it has been many years. If you need help, the priest will help you. You are in my prayers.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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