Is receiving Holy Communion in the hand inherently sacreligious?
#1
I've been chatting to some Mexican Catholics who are not trads, yet are vehemently opposed to receiving Holy Communion in the hand, saying that it doesn't come from God and is inherently sacreligious. As a moderate trad in full communion with Pope Francis, and who regularly attends OF Masses out of necessity (though I do receive Holy Communion kneeling regardless of EF or OF), it troubles me. I don't care for any response from any trad who isn't in full comunion with the pope (sedes and whatnot). 

Can Holy Communion in the hand be inherently sacreligious? I don't think so, because regardless of whether or not it should have been implemented as an option, the Catholic Church is preserved from proclaiming something that is inherently sinful and sacreligious.
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#2
I am in full Communion, I never receive in the hand or standing (in the Western Church), but I don't think it's inherently sacrilegious to receive in the hand. The problem is that it opens up all sorts of possibilities of sacrilege, without being in itself sacrilegious.
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#3
I'm in full communion, too, just like the rest of the SSPX faithful...

No, it's not inherently a sacrilege. It was done in the early Church, but not in the same way as it has been implemented now (it was much more reverent and careful, often involving using a veiled right hand, not one's bare hands).

The fundamental problem is not that it is some sacrilege to touch the Blessed Sacrament, but that it was introduced, not in order to foster devotion to the Blessed Sacrament, but by those who were trying to undermine the respect due to Our Lord, and even looking to deny his Real Presence.

It was never "proclaimed" as you suggested.

Firstly, infallibility does not protect Churchmen from promoting something which is inherently sinful or sacrilegious (if you need proof of that, just look at the whole Amoris Lætitiæ debacle, in which the Pope is clearly encouraging and promoting sacrilegious communion for the adulterous—that fits both the sacrilege and sin category you worry about).

Secondly, Communion in the Hand was firstly started as an abuse in Holland in the 1960s. The bishops there pushed it, but despite this, in 1969 the Congregation for Divine Worship refused to allow it, as the majority of bishops were against it. Paul VI did not want a confrontation, but did want to stem the abuse, so issued an Indult (an exception to the law) under very stringent conditions. Communion in the hand was permitted only where it was already established, and then only where the bishops of the place approved it by a 2/3 plurality.

Then it came to the U.S. (which never had it before 1976), when bishops illegally tried to impose it by vote (which was not allowed by the Indult). Archbishop Bernadin and Quinn wanted to vote and force Paul VI to extend the indult. It was introduced in most other places also as an illegal abuse.

The New Liturgical Movement has the storied history.
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#4
(01-15-2018, 02:56 AM)MagisterMusicae Wrote: I'm in full communion, too, just like the rest of the SSPX faithful...

No, it's not inherently a sacrilege. It was done in the early Church, but not in the same way as it has been implemented now (it was much more reverent and careful, often involving using a veiled right hand, not one's bare hands).

The fundamental problem is not that it is some sacrilege to touch the Blessed Sacrament, but that it was introduced, not in order to foster devotion to the Blessed Sacrament, but by those who were trying to undermine the respect due to Our Lord, and even looking to deny his Real Presence.

It was never "proclaimed" as you suggested.

Firstly, infallibility does not protect Churchmen from promoting something which is inherently sinful or sacrilegious (if you need proof of that, just look at the whole Amoris Lætitiæ debacle, in which the Pope is clearly encouraging and promoting sacrilegious communion for the adulterous—that fits both the sacrilege and sin category you worry about).

Secondly, Communion in the Hand was firstly started as an abuse in Holland in the 1960s. The bishops there pushed it, but despite this, in 1969 the Congregation for Divine Worship refused to allow it, as the majority of bishops were against it. Paul VI did not want a confrontation, but did want to stem the abuse, so issued an Indult (an exception to the law) under very stringent conditions. Communion in the hand was permitted only where it was already established, and then only where the bishops of the place approved it by a 2/3 plurality.

Then it came to the U.S. (which never had it before 1976), when bishops illegally tried to impose it by vote (which was not allowed by the Indult). Archbishop Bernadin and Quinn wanted to vote and force Paul VI to extend the indult. It was introduced in most other places also as an illegal abuse.

The New Liturgical Movement has the storied history.
Peace.....I too receive on the tongue - I read quite some time ago, that the reason it is not recommended in the hand, is the risk of someone running out with it for abuses or Satanic Worship.  I think if that was one's intention, they could also spit it out later and leave it in their hand - who is watching really?  My friends and I have had discussion over this, and prefer communion given directly from the priest onto the tongue - no change of hands (Eucharistic Ministers) in the hand.  Having said all that, I think Jesus broke the bread and handed it to the disciples - who were laying on the floor around him - any comments??
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#5
(01-15-2018, 04:25 PM)angeltime Wrote: Having said all that, I think Jesus broke the bread and handed it to the disciples - who were laying on the floor around him - any comments??

They were bishops, and so they were consecrated to handle the Host. Lay people aren't.
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#6
(01-15-2018, 04:25 PM)angeltime Wrote:
(01-15-2018, 02:56 AM)MagisterMusicae Wrote: I'm in full communion, too, just like the rest of the SSPX faithful...

No, it's not inherently a sacrilege. It was done in the early Church, but not in the same way as it has been implemented now (it was much more reverent and careful, often involving using a veiled right hand, not one's bare hands).

The fundamental problem is not that it is some sacrilege to touch the Blessed Sacrament, but that it was introduced, not in order to foster devotion to the Blessed Sacrament, but by those who were trying to undermine the respect due to Our Lord, and even looking to deny his Real Presence.

It was never "proclaimed" as you suggested.



Firstly, infallibility does not protect Churchmen from promoting something which is inherently sinful or sacrilegious (if you need proof of that, just look at the whole Amoris Lætitiæ debacle, in which the Pope is clearly encouraging and promoting sacrilegious communion for the adulterous—that fits both the sacrilege and sin category you worry about).

Secondly, Communion in the Hand was firstly started as an abuse in Holland in the 1960s. The bishops there pushed it, but despite this, in 1969 the Congregation for Divine Worship refused to allow it, as the majority of bishops were against it. Paul VI did not want a confrontation, but did want to stem the abuse, so issued an Indult (an exception to the law) under very stringent conditions. Communion in the hand was permitted only where it was already established, and then only where the bishops of the place approved it by a 2/3 plurality.

Then it came to the U.S. (which never had it before 1976), when bishops illegally tried to impose it by vote (which was not allowed by the Indult). Archbishop Bernadin and Quinn wanted to vote and force Paul VI to extend the indult. It was introduced in most other places also as an illegal abuse.

The New Liturgical Movement has the storied history.
Peace.....I too receive on the tongue - I read quite some time ago, that the reason it is not recommended in the hand, is the risk of someone running out with it for abuses or Satanic Worship.  I think if that was one's intention, they could also spit it out later and leave it in their hand - who is watching really?  My friends and I have had discussion over this, and prefer communion given directly from the priest onto the tongue - no change of hands (Eucharistic Ministers) in the hand.  Having said all that, I think Jesus broke the bread and handed it to the disciples - who were laying on the floor around him - any comments??
In the first times of the Church, the communion was given in both ways, on the tongue or in the hand, but the last practice was stopped in the early centuries due to abuses.
Once Paul VI had it authorized again, the abuses were back immediately after, peculiarly when the host is stolen to be used in satanic masses or in many other forms of desecration: Our priest found hosts between pages of missals or another one was stuck with chewing gum under the pew.
The lack of reverence for the Eucharist has never been so widespread, thanks for this bad practice.
My brother told me once that he was in the line to receive communion, he saw that a host had fallen on the ground unnoticed by the priest. The man before him saw it too but didn't care bending down to catch and eat it: He just pushed the host with the tip of his shoe to avoid walking on, received communion and went away imperturbably.
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#7
One ancient church, the Assyrian Church of the East, maintained the practice of Communion in the hand to the present day; not sure whether their Catholic counterparts, the Chaldeans, dropped the practice when uniting with Rome or not. In any event, the Assyrian practice is nothing like Novus Ordo practice. The communicant first purifies his or her hands by waving them through the smoke of incense as a sign of sanctifying the hands to receive Communion. They then take great care to ensure every particle is consumed from their hands. It is not a casual, carefree practice like you see throughout the modern Roman Rite.

Like others have mentioned, it's not intrinsically evil, but it was not reintroduced with pure motives. I don't know that lessening external reverence for the Eucharist was a goal, but I most certainly believe reducing the distinction between priest and laity was.
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#8
(01-15-2018, 06:21 PM)Paul Wrote:
(01-15-2018, 04:25 PM)angeltime Wrote: Having said all that, I think Jesus broke the bread and handed it to the disciples - who were laying on the floor around him - any comments??

They were bishops, and so they were consecrated to handle the Host. Lay people aren't.

There are plentiful accounts in Church History where the laity or clerics who were not priests or bishops were permitted to handle the host.

In fact, it was not uncommon in the early Church that the faithful would take home and reserve the Blessed Sacrament for communion throughout the week or when distant.

For instance Tertullian in Ad Uxorem, says that one reason for for a wife not to remarry after the death of her husband, unless he were a Christian is that if a pagan, the Eucharist might be profaned since it was kept at home. 

St. Cyprian (De Lapsis) warns the laity of the possible profanation of the Eucharist when they took it home.

While that practice stopped, thankfully, it shows that the idea that "Consecrated Hosts" must be handled by "Consecrated Hands" is false. It comes from a good place, and is a good rule of thumb, but has no basis in theology or Church history.

Even if we were to reject these, the Church has, since her earliest days, permitted the deacon (whose hands are not consecrated in any way) to handle the Blessed Sacrament with explicit or implicit permission.

The hands of a priest are consecrated (as the traditional Roman Rite says) to bless things, not to handle the Eucharist.
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#9
Not growing up with the TLM I wasn't fully sure what the problems with receiving in the hand were until this video explained it to me so well in detail:

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#10
(01-16-2018, 04:46 AM)Sacred Heart lover Wrote: Not growing up with the TLM I wasn't fully sure what the problems with receiving in the hand were until this video explained it to me so well in detail:

I think it important that the first thing Bishop Schneider says is that Communion in the Hand is an "effective" (i.e. efficient) cause of the diminishing of the Faith in the Eucharist. The rest all flows from this.

We may think Communion in the hand leads to possible sacrilege (like the taking of the host for evil purposes, or mistreatment), but in fact that is just a consequence of this far more fundamental and grave problem.

Christ is not injured by some mistreatment in the Eucharist. We are. Our Faith in the Blessed Sacrament is lessened.

That loss of Faith is a grave problem, and to put oneself or another in a situation where there is a danger in losing some of all of their Faith is, in itself, a grave problem.

For example, if we have a clothing catalog which has some immodest, but not lewd pictures, so not inherently bad and not an occasion of sin for those who are balanced, but not ideal, but we also have a brother living with us who has a serious problem with pornography and a warped sexuality, we would never leave the catalog out, as it would be an occasion of sin for him.

Communion in the hand is analogically the same. While in itself, if everyone were properly catechized and the practice done with great reverence, it would not be sacrilegious or even a serious problem, we live around people who have a very weak Faith, and the manner of reception is banal ("like a chip", as Bishop Schneider says). So like the catalog, it's not wrong, but to expose people to that who are weak and for whom it will be a cause of harm is wrong.

That is why it is not inherently sacrilegious, but very easily leads to it.
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