Questions about Eucharistic Ministers?
#11
I too am a pre-Vatican II Cradle Catholic, raised in a very conservative Catholic Diocese and schooled by Nuns for 12 years in Catholic Parochial Schools. I was a sophomore in Catholic High School when all the turmoil of Vatican II hit the Church full on. The tabernacles moved and Altars now merely a table in the Sanctuary. Talk about shockers! That was only the beginning for me and my contemporaries.

So, how do I get from that background to where I am now? I am a "Extraordinary Minister of the Holy Eucharist (or Communion)", Commissioned by my Bishop and trained by my Diocese to perform this function. I am "Extraordinary" not because I am somehow 'special', but because I am out of the ordinary (extra) ministry of the Church and in Not Ordained. This situation was established to help out the Parishes that were short on Priests and Ordained Ministers to aid in distribution of Eucharist at Mass and other functions.

That being said, things, predictably, have gotten way out of hand from such lofty beginnings. As per usual, many abuses have arisen from this established ministry. I won't go into details, we all are aware of them and I hope that like in my Parish, Pastors will reign in those who are taking way too many liberties with their access to the Holy Eucharist.

Let me just say that I had great difficulty in touching the Holy Eucharist at the beginning of my journey. I still regard it as a very special privilege to do so and I am quite hesitant to do so at Mass, but I do acknowledge to apparent need still exists to give aid to our lone priest, who serves two parishes.

Where I find my deepest solace, is in the part of my Ministry which is devoted to visiting the Homebound and Hospitalized members of our Parish, where I bring Our Lord to them twice a week, on Wednesdays and Sundays. There are not enough priests, or even deacons to handle this load since our Parish is overwhelmingly made up of Retired folks and we are increasingly getting sicker and more confined to institutions where there are no Catholic Chaplains at all.

I travel over 125 miles each day that I go out to visit my friends and in that time I get a lot of prayer and meditation done...many Rosaries. It is like being in 'Adoration' for hours. There are only a very few that I encounter that do this, so there is a need. One Nursing home I go to, I provide a Eucharistic Service on Wednesdays when the Priest cannot come for Mass. I carry about 20 Hosts, in my Pix, from our Parish to give Communion to these shut-ins and I go to rooms where there are those who can't get out of bed to attend the service or Mass. The priest is so busy (from another, much larger Parish) that he cannot go to these rooms after he gives Mass, so I go alone and on to two other Nursing Homes as well afterwards. These he never gets to see. It gives me, in my spirit, a shudder of The Holy Spirit, when often I see the reaction of those who are near death and receive Our Holy Lord in the Eucharist! It is something that happens every so often and it is a true Blessing to observe. He is truly present in the Holy Eucharist and I have observed such peace and overt reaction from those who need Him most when they receive Him! Often I will give Him in the smallest of fragments, to those near death and otherwise, unresponsive (I'm a retired Nurse and am familiar with such procedures and can do this without risk of harm to the person or disrespect to the Species) or unable to accept openly, yet it is the spirit of the person that receives Him. One just has to see this to appreciate it. One has to hear from the family how their loved one responded afterwards, when you return or see that family at the loved one's funeral. Blessings indeed!

I guess I can sum up that there is a need for EMHCs, but it has become something that has been abused by many Parishes, where there are armies of them 'handing out' the Holy Eucharist and Precious Blood in very nonchalant ways which are very disrespectful to Our Lord's Presence in the Holy Eucharist. This and other abuses are very disturbing to me and I am sure to others and I hope these disrespectful practices cease, but I fear that the 'Genie' is out of the bottle, and it will only get worse in some cases. We can only pray for heavenly intervention to quell this situation.
One should have an open mind; open enough that things get in, but not so open that everything falls out
Art Bell
  
I don't need a good memory, because I always tell the truth.
Jessie Ventura

Its no wonder truth is stranger than fiction.
Fiction has to make sense
Mark Twain

All War is Deception
Gen. Sun

You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.
C.S. Lewis

Political Correctness is Fascism pretending to be manners.
George Carlin

“In a time of deceit…truth is a revolutionary act”
George Orwell
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#12
(12-21-2017, 08:34 AM)petite_sourire Wrote: Thank you both for your advice! I will definitely take it, and not receive from the Chalice anymore.
What I am worried about though, is that I feel quite rude just walking past Jesus like that :( Do you have any advice?


Just a quick reply.

It has never been known that infection has been passed by reception of the Precious Blood or Holy Eucharist.

If you feel as though you are at risk, do not receive, but I for one am confident that one cannot be infected by anything Sacred and Consecrated.

Personally, I think that as "Ministers of The Cup", Deacons can remove the 'Cup' from the Altar and distribute the Precious Blood as was done in times past. I believe that is the proper form and EMHCs is not, in the old form.
One should have an open mind; open enough that things get in, but not so open that everything falls out
Art Bell
  
I don't need a good memory, because I always tell the truth.
Jessie Ventura

Its no wonder truth is stranger than fiction.
Fiction has to make sense
Mark Twain

All War is Deception
Gen. Sun

You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.
C.S. Lewis

Political Correctness is Fascism pretending to be manners.
George Carlin

“In a time of deceit…truth is a revolutionary act”
George Orwell
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#13
(12-21-2017, 12:05 PM)Zedta Wrote: Just a quick reply.

It has never been known that infection has been passed by reception of the Precious Blood or Holy Eucharist.

If you feel as though you are at risk, do not receive, but I for one am confident that one cannot be infected by anything Sacred and Consecrated.

Personally, I think that as "Ministers of The Cup", Deacons can remove the 'Cup' from the Altar and distribute the Precious Blood as was done in times past. I believe that is the proper form and EMHCs is not, in the old form.

Thanks for your reply. I'm not at all worried about germs or infection :D I've always received the Blood of Christ and never thought twice about those kind of things. Just recently though, I've been wondering why the Blood of Christ is not offered at the Latin Mass, and does that mean we should not be receiving His Blood from an EMHC at a Novus Ordo Mass? Is that disrespectful to the Real Presence? I am quite new to Traditional Catholicism, so I have so many questions. I could go on forever with all the questions that I have :laughing: but I'm starting with this one hahaha
Dominus meus et Deus meus :heart:

“It's true, I suffer a great deal--but do I suffer well? That is the question.”
~ Saint Therese de Lisieux
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#14
(12-21-2017, 08:34 AM)petite_sourire Wrote: Thank you both for your advice! I will definitely take it, and not receive from the Chalice anymore.
What I am worried about though, is that I feel quite rude just walking past Jesus like that :( Do you have any advice?

It never occurred to me, but last Sunday (at a NO) I noticed a man walked past the EMHC holding the Sacred Chalice and he gave a quick bow towards it, or maybe a nod of the head.  Either way it struck me and I realized I had been walking past Christ this whole time without thinking it, because I'm just so annoyed at the dumb, stupid grin on the EMHC's faces.

I think what that man did was the right way to handle it.  A simple gesture to acknowledge Christ in the Sacred Chalice. A quick bow, or a nod should suffice.  If you want, you can really tick people off and genuflect fully muahaha!


(12-21-2017, 10:32 PM)petite_sourire Wrote: Just recently though, I've been wondering why the Blood of Christ is not offered at the Latin Mass, and does that mean we should not be receiving His Blood from an EMHC at a Novus Ordo Mass? Is that disrespectful to the Real Presence?

It is entirely up to you whether you wish to receive Him in under both species or one. However as stated previously nothing is gained from receiving both species, other than simply the honor and privilege of being able to receive Him in the form of the Sacred Chalice. I would say if you wish to be Traditional about this, then it is proper to refrain from drinking from the Sacred Chalice as it has always been Tradition that the laymen only receive the Host.

It is not disrespectful to receive, nor refrain from the Sacred Chalice.

Quote:I am quite new to Traditional Catholicism, so I have so many questions. I could go on forever with all the questions that I have :laughing: but I'm starting with this one hahaha

Please, ask away...FE wouldn't be a site without questions from eager neophyte-Trads.
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#15
(12-21-2017, 11:46 AM)Zedta Wrote: I too am a pre-Vatican II Cradle Catholic, raised in a very conservative Catholic Diocese and schooled by Nuns for 12 years in Catholic Parochial Schools. I was a sophomore in Catholic High School when all the turmoil of Vatican II hit the Church full on. The tabernacles moved and Altars now merely a table in the Sanctuary. Talk about shockers! That was only the beginning for me and my contemporaries.

So, how do I get from that background to where I am now? I am a "Extraordinary Minister of the Holy Eucharist (or Communion)", Commissioned by my Bishop and trained by my Diocese to perform this function. I am "Extraordinary" not because I am somehow 'special', but because I am out of the ordinary (extra) ministry of the Church and in Not Ordained. This situation was established to help out the Parishes that were short on Priests and Ordained Ministers to aid in distribution of Eucharist at Mass and other functions.

That being said, things, predictably, have gotten way out of hand from such lofty beginnings. As per usual, many abuses have arisen from this established ministry. I won't go into details, we all are aware of them and I hope that like in my Parish, Pastors will reign in those who are taking way too many liberties with their access to the Holy Eucharist.

Let me just say that I had great difficulty in touching the Holy Eucharist at the beginning of my journey. I still regard it as a very special privilege to do so and I am quite hesitant to do so at Mass, but I do acknowledge to apparent need still exists to give aid to our lone priest, who serves two parishes.

Where I find my deepest solace, is in the part of my Ministry which is devoted to visiting the Homebound and Hospitalized members of our Parish, where I bring Our Lord to them twice a week, on Wednesdays and Sundays. There are not enough priests, or even deacons to handle this load since our Parish is overwhelmingly made up of Retired folks and we are increasingly getting sicker and more confined to institutions where there are no Catholic Chaplains at all.

I travel over 125 miles each day that I go out to visit my friends and in that time I get a lot of prayer and meditation done...many Rosaries. It is like being in 'Adoration' for hours. There are only a very few that I encounter that do this, so there is a need. One Nursing home I go to, I provide a Eucharistic Service on Wednesdays when the Priest cannot come for Mass. I carry about 20 Hosts, in my Pix, from our Parish to give Communion to these shut-ins and I go to rooms where there are those who can't get out of bed to attend the service or Mass. The priest is so busy (from another, much larger Parish) that he cannot go to these rooms after he gives Mass, so I go alone and on to two other Nursing Homes as well afterwards. These he never gets to see. It gives me, in my spirit, a shudder of The Holy Spirit, when often I see the reaction of those who are near death and receive Our Holy Lord in the Eucharist! It is something that happens every so often and it is a true Blessing to observe. He is truly present in the Holy Eucharist and I have observed such peace and overt reaction from those who need Him most when they receive Him! Often I will give Him in the smallest of fragments, to those near death and otherwise, unresponsive (I'm a retired Nurse and am familiar with such procedures and can do this without risk of harm to the person or disrespect to the Species) or unable to accept openly, yet it is the spirit of the person that receives Him. One just has to see this to appreciate it. One has to hear from the family how their loved one responded afterwards, when you return or see that family at the loved one's funeral. Blessings indeed!

I guess I can sum up that there is a need for EMHCs, but it has become something that has been abused by many Parishes, where there are armies of them 'handing out' the Holy Eucharist and Precious Blood in very nonchalant ways which are very disrespectful to Our Lord's Presence in the Holy Eucharist. This and other abuses are very disturbing to me and I am sure to others and I hope these disrespectful practices cease, but I fear that the 'Genie' is out of the bottle, and it will only get worse in some cases. We can only pray for heavenly intervention to quell this situation.


Thank you for that beautiful insight. It's true that many EMHCs are not aware of the importance of their role, and treat it with indifference....I'm happy that the world has you though! You obviously regard your role with a great amount of respect, and you also receive a lot of grace from it! That's really beautiful that you regularly give the Body of Jesus to the dying, when a priest cannot....
Just to clarify, I'm not a pre-Vatican II Catholic, I'm actually a Post Vatican II teenager :cool:  I wish I could have been schooled by nuns!! Amazing!
Dominus meus et Deus meus :heart:

“It's true, I suffer a great deal--but do I suffer well? That is the question.”
~ Saint Therese de Lisieux
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#16
(12-21-2017, 10:36 PM)austenbosten Wrote: I think what that man did was the right way to handle it.  A simple gesture to acknowledge Christ in the Sacred Chalice. A quick bow, or a nod should suffice.  If you want, you can really tick people off and genuflect fully muahaha!

Please, ask away...FE wouldn't be a site without questions from eager neophyte-Trads.

That's a lovely idea, I will definitely bow from now on. And if I find the courage, genuflect, mwahaha :laughing:
And thank you for offering to answer my questions. From the top of my head, these are some of the things I have been pondering lately:
- I read somewhere (on this site I think!) that we should not say "Amen" aloud just prior to receiving Communion, is that true?
- When making the Sign of the Cross, is it preferable to raise two fingers and bend the other three in honour of Jesus' Divinity and Humanity, and the Holy Trinity? I have always just used my hand as it is.
- How does one remains respectful to the Real Presence during the Sign of Peace, without appearing to be rude to other parishioners?
- Do you believe the Mysteries of the Light should be recited or not? I have heard many different opinions and I am confused...
Dominus meus et Deus meus :heart:

“It's true, I suffer a great deal--but do I suffer well? That is the question.”
~ Saint Therese de Lisieux
Reply
#17
(12-21-2017, 10:32 PM)petite_sourire Wrote:
(12-21-2017, 10:36 PM)austenbosten Wrote: I think what that man did was the right way to handle it.  A simple gesture to acknowledge Christ in the Sacred Chalice. A quick bow, or a nod should suffice.  If you want, you can really tick people off and genuflect fully muahaha!

Please, ask away...FE wouldn't be a site without questions from eager neophyte-Trads.

That's a lovely idea, I will definitely bow from now on. And if I find the courage, genuflect, mwahaha :laughing:
And thank you for offering to answer my questions. From the top of my head, these are some of the things I have been pondering lately:

Haha I know what you mean about mustering courage.  I'm still mustering courage to receive Communion kneeling.  I will probably do it with the new priest, as he comes from a Trad-parish.  I refrain from doing it because

A) I don't want to cause a disturbance in the line and risk some old person tripping and injuring themselves.
B) I don't want to risk the priest accidentally dropping the Host because he hasn't had to give Communion to a genuflectee in decades.

I remember the first time I made an effort to receive only from the priest and the fear I had with cutting in line, so I can receive from the priest.  I remember the first time, my hands trembled because I feared that all these laymen and EMs were starring at me with "Who is this guy?".


Quote:- I read somewhere (on this site I think!) that we should not say "Amen" aloud just prior to receiving Communion, is that true?

If you are at a Tridentine Mass, the priest will say the "Amen" on your behalf.  You do not say "Amen".  At NO Mass, you are to say "Amen" prior to receiving.

I actually had to look this up, since I've never heard this before; but yes, in the Latin Mass: No, in NO: Yes.


Quote:- When making the Sign of the Cross, is it preferable to raise two fingers and bend the other three in honour of Jesus' Divinity and Humanity, and the Holy Trinity? I have always just used my hand as it is.

It's up to you.  The Trinitarian gesture is more Byzantine, than Latin.  Latin uses an open hand to represent the Five Wounds of Christ, or two-fingers for Christ's Two Natures.  

You can use either form, though if you prefer the Eastern-form, then make a sign in the form of your pointer-finger, middle-finger, and your thumb. Have the pointer-finger remain straight, while your middle-finger touches your thumb.  Then go from forehead to breast, then right to left, instead of left to right in the Latin fashion.


Quote:- How does one remains respectful to the Real Presence during the Sign of Peace, without appearing to be rude to other parishioners?

Ugh this is difficult.  Sometimes I would simply remain kneeling and praying; people would leave you alone.  Generally I just shake a few hands as quiet as can be.  The Sign of Peace is just a boil I have to lance every Mass. Hopefully we will get a better Pope than Francis, or Benedict, or JP II, or PVI...who will abolish or at least move the SoP to a different portion of the Mass.  You would think that it would be right after the Offertory.

Quote:- Do you believe the Mysteries of the Light should be recited or not? I have heard many different opinions and I am confused...

I've heard different opinions supporting it.  There is nothing inherently wrong or evil about the Luminous Mysteries, they after all celebrate Christ's Public Ministry.  However, the Rosary was given to us by Our Blessed Mother and well you cannot improve upon perfection, so why try?

Needless to say, I do not meditate on the Luminous Mysteries.
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#18
(12-22-2017, 08:25 AM)austenbosten Wrote:
(12-21-2017, 10:32 PM)petite_sourire Wrote:
(12-21-2017, 10:36 PM)austenbosten Wrote: I think what that man did was the right way to handle it.  A simple gesture to acknowledge Christ in the Sacred Chalice. A quick bow, or a nod should suffice.  If you want, you can really tick people off and genuflect fully muahaha!

Please, ask away...FE wouldn't be a site without questions from eager neophyte-Trads.

That's a lovely idea, I will definitely bow from now on. And if I find the courage, genuflect, mwahaha :laughing:
And thank you for offering to answer my questions. From the top of my head, these are some of the things I have been pondering lately:

Haha I know what you mean about mustering courage.  I'm still mustering courage to receive Communion kneeling.  I will probably do it with the new priest, as he comes from a Trad-parish.  I refrain from doing it because

A) I don't want to cause a disturbance in the line and risk some old person tripping and injuring themselves.
B) I don't want to risk the priest accidentally dropping the Host because he hasn't had to give Communion to a genuflectee in decades.

I remember the first time I made an effort to receive only from the priest and the fear I had with cutting in line, so I can receive from the priest.  I remember the first time, my hands trembled because I feared that all these laymen and EMs were starring at me with "Who is this guy?".


Quote:- I read somewhere (on this site I think!) that we should not say "Amen" aloud just prior to receiving Communion, is that true?

If you are at a Tridentine Mass, the priest will say the "Amen" on your behalf.  You do not say "Amen".  At NO Mass, you are to say "Amen" prior to receiving.

I actually had to look this up, since I've never heard this before; but yes, in the Latin Mass: No, in NO: Yes.


Quote:- When making the Sign of the Cross, is it preferable to raise two fingers and bend the other three in honour of Jesus' Divinity and Humanity, and the Holy Trinity? I have always just used my hand as it is.

It's up to you.  The Trinitarian gesture is more Byzantine, than Latin.  Latin uses an open hand to represent the Five Wounds of Christ, or two-fingers for Christ's Two Natures.  

You can use either form, though if you prefer the Eastern-form, then make a sign in the form of your pointer-finger, middle-finger, and your thumb. Have the pointer-finger remain straight, while your middle-finger touches your thumb.  Then go from forehead to breast, then right to left, instead of left to right in the Latin fashion.


Quote:- How does one remains respectful to the Real Presence during the Sign of Peace, without appearing to be rude to other parishioners?

Ugh this is difficult.  Sometimes I would simply remain kneeling and praying; people would leave you alone.  Generally I just shake a few hands as quiet as can be.  The Sign of Peace is just a boil I have to lance every Mass. Hopefully we will get a better Pope than Francis, or Benedict, or JP II, or PVI...who will abolish or at least move the SoP to a different portion of the Mass.  You would think that it would be right after the Offertory.

Quote:- Do you believe the Mysteries of the Light should be recited or not? I have heard many different opinions and I am confused...

I've heard different opinions supporting it.  There is nothing inherently wrong or evil about the Luminous Mysteries, they after all celebrate Christ's Public Ministry.  However, the Rosary was given to us by Our Blessed Mother and well you cannot improve upon perfection, so why try?

Needless to say, I do not meditate on the Luminous Mysteries.


Thank you so much. Everything you have said has been most helpful!
Dominus meus et Deus meus :heart:

“It's true, I suffer a great deal--but do I suffer well? That is the question.”
~ Saint Therese de Lisieux
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#19
de rien :)

If you have any more questions, don't hesitate to ask. I'm very glad you are asking these questions because it allows me to discover things I haven't thought of.
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#20
I think that rather than focusing on who the eucharistic 'minister' is that we should really focus on who it is that we are receiving.
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