Fidelity to the Word
Our Lord and His Holy Apostles at the Last Supper

A blog dedicated to Christ Jesus our Lord and His True Presence in the Holy Mystery of the Eucharist

Sanctify, O Lord, we beseech Thee, the gifts offered up to Thee and cleanse our hearts by the light of the Holy Spirit.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Dominus Est

The Most Reverend Athanasius Schneider, auxiliary bishop of Karaganda, Kazakhstan, is the author of Dominus Est, a book which calls for greater care and reverence in the distribution of Holy Communion, and a return to traditional practices that have been abandoned in the last 30 years. Here he speaks with someone from

From Alcuin Reid's review of His Excellency's book:

It was 1969. Paul VI was the Pope. The Congregation for Divine Worship issued an Instruction, Memoriale Domini, on the manner of receiving Holy Communion. It makes very interesting reading.

After recalling the development of the reception of Communion on the tongue as a fruit of "a deepening understanding of the truth of the Eucharistic mystery, of its power and of the presence of Christ in it," the Instruction declares that "this method of distributing holy communion must be retained...not merely because it has many centuries of tradition behind it, but especially because it expresses the faithful's reverence for the Eucharist. The custom does not detract in any way from the personal dignity of those who approach this great sacrament: it is part of that preparation that is needed for the most fruitful reception of the Body of the Lord" it said.

It also warned: "A change in a matter of such moment, based on a most ancient and venerable tradition, does not merely affect discipline. It carries certain dangers with it which may arise from the new manner of administering Holy Communion: the danger of a loss of reverence for the august sacrament of the altar, of profanation, of adulterating the true doctrine." And it published a survey of the world's bishops, which led it to conclude: "the vast majority of bishops believe that the present discipline should not be changed, and that if it were, the change would be offensive to the sentiments and the spiritual culture of these bishops and of many of the faithful." For this reason it reports, "the Holy Father has decided not to change the existing way of administering holy communion to the faithful."

What happened, for communion in the hand is now practically universal and younger generations know practically nothing else?



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