Letter from Msgr. Schaedel for bulletin of December 10, 2000
We are now into the second week of Advent.† You will notice that Father Duvelius and I are taking turns preaching the Sundays of Advent.† This way, everyone hears the same message; both of us are present for all Masses, and we only have to prepare a sermon twice during Advent.† (Depending on how one looks at it; it might be a relief for people in the pew too!)
Let me remind you that there is an opportunity for confession before all Masses, seven days a week here at Holy Rosary.† Please make use of this essential sacrament as part of your preparation for Christmas and the Great Jubilee during these weeks of Advent.
The Advent Penance Service for those parishes who support Central Catholic School (Sacred Heart, Good Shepherd, Saint Patrick, and us) will be at Saint Patrick on Sunday, December 17th, at 3:00 p.m.
Let me also remind you that this is Advent of the Holy Year 2000.† In the Roman Catholic tradition, a Holy Year or Jubilee is a great religious event.† It is a year of forgiveness of sins, reconciliation between adversaries, of conversion and receiving the Sacrament of Penance, and consequently of solidarity, hope, justice, commitment to serve God with joy and in peace with our brothers and sisters.† A Jubilee year is above all the year of Christ, Who brings life and grace to humanity.†
Last weekend, at the English Masses, we again instituted the Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist.† These are the folks who have the privilege of assisting the priests in the distribution of Holy Communion both at Mass and to the sick and homebound when necessary.† We thank them for their ministry.
The Latin Mass in the 1962 Ordo does not allow for this.† Nor does it allow for Holy Communion to be received in the hand.† Hence, we do not do this at the Latin Mass.
However, Iíd like to make a couple of references to how one should receive Holy Communion.† It goes without saying that it must be done with the utmost reverence.
For those who receive Holy Communion on the tongue, itís just thatóthe tongue.† At any of the Masses I notice some people who just open their mouth wide but do not extend their tongue to receive the Host.† Remember that the priest is distributing Holy Communion, not conducting a dental or oral exam.† Please extend the tongue!
For those who receive Holy Communion in the hand at the English Masses:† The correct way is one hand on top of the other.† The Host is placed in the open hand, the underneath hand is used to place the Host on your own tongue before you turn to return to your seat.† The priest or person distributing Communion has the responsibility to make certain that the person consumes the Host and does not carry it back to their pew or anywhere else.
If you chose to drink from the chalice at the English Masses:† Take the cup into your own hands and sip a small amount of the Precious Blood, then hand the cup back to the priest or the extraordinary minister.
The process of self-intinction (once introduced on a trial basis) is now forbidden.† This means that no one is allowed to take the Host, dip it into the cup, and then place it on their own tongue.† The only way intinction is allowed is if the person hands the Host to the priest or other person distributing the Precious Blood.† The priest or the extraordinary ministers dips the Host into the chalice, and then it is placed on the tongue of the person receiving by the priest or the extraordinary minister.† Please remember, self-intinction is simply not allowed; this has been true for some time.
For a while, some people were quoting a rather well-known priest author lecturer.† They claimed that he said that Mother Teresa once told him that the most distressing thing to her was people receiving Holy Communion in the hand.† This was their ammunition to criticize the practice.† Somehow this did not ring true.† It was not Mother Teresaís style.† Even if she disagreed with something the Holy Father said, did, or allowed, she would not say it.
Since I know this priest, I once asked him about it when I met him at a meeting.† What Mother Teresa said was distressing was the irreverence with which some people receive Holy Communion, particularly those who receive in the hand.Ē† This is a slight difference here.† I wish that receiving only on the tongue were a guarantee of reverence.† It is not.† And tongues or hands aside, it is what is in our hearts that really counts.† Whatever way one receives, letís do it right and letís do it reverently.
Sincerely in God's Providence,
Rev. Msgr. Joseph F. Schaedel