"It is...Our will that Catholics should abstain from certain appellations which have recently been brought into use to distinguish one group of Catholics from another. They are to be avoided not only as 'profane novelties of words,' out of harmony with both truth and justice, but also because they give rise to great trouble and confusion among Catholics. Such is the nature of Catholicism that it does not admit of more or less, but must be held as a whole or as a whole rejected: 'This is the Catholic faith, which unless a man believe faithfully and firmly; he cannot be saved' (Athanasian Creed). There is no need of adding any qualifying terms to the profession of Catholicism: it is quite enough for each one to proclaim 'Christian is my name and Catholic my surname,' only let him endeavour to be in reality what he calls himself." -- Pope Benedict XV, Ad Beatissimi Apostolorum 24 (1914)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

The Necessity of the Priest's Communion



These first two images are absolutely essential for the completion of the re-presentation of the Sacrifice of Christ at every Catholic Mass--it must occur:

The Holy Communion of the Laity is important, but not necessary for the completion of the Holy Sacrifice which belongs to the priest alone to complete.

Did you know that in the pre-Vatican II Liturgy, especially with its stringent fast from midnight to the time of Mass and fasting from food and water, that often Holy Communion wasn't even offered to the laity present. Yes, only the priest received. And in doing so both the Sacrifice and the Banquet of the Body and Blood of Christ who is the Sacrificial Victim or Holocaust were completed.

It is absolutely necessary according to orthodox Catholic Eucharistic doctrine for the priest who celebrates any EF or OF Mass and in the Ordinary Form for all con-celebrants to receive the Sacrificial Victim's Body and Blood consecrated at that particular Mass (meaning not from the tabernacle) in order to complete the Sacrificial action of the Mass. And they must receive both the consecrated Bread and Wine, the Precious Body and Blood of our Lord.

Then the laity are offered a portion of that same Sacrifice. In fact the GIRM of the 2012 missal states that the laity should receive Holy Communion consecrated at the Mass they are attending rather than routinely given hosts from the tabernacle consecrated at a previous Mass. The simplified fast helps to facilitate this and I do believe that it is not permitted in the Ordinary Form to deny anyone to receive Holy Communion who is free to do so, meaning having observed the one hour fast and being in a state of grace. The reception of the Sacrificial Victim is a sign of the eternal banquet of the perfectly redeemed in heaven. Unforgiven sinners are not in heaven and thus for an unforgiven sinner to receive Holy Communion corrupts the heavenly sacramental symbolism of the Banquet aspect of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

While the norm for the laity to receive Holy Communion consecrated at the Mass they are assisting, it is not mandatory for the validity of the Sacrifice of the Mass, for their reception of Holy Communion is not essential for the "completion of the Sacrifice" as it is for the priest who celebrates the Mass. On top of that, the laity are not mandated to receive from the Chalice the Precious Blood of Christ as the priest-celebrant is required to do.

But how many Catholic know what I just described? I doubt that the majority of of my parishioners know. In fact I didn't really know this until about a few years ago myself. It just has not be emphasized in post-Vatican II theology on the Mass. Can it be because the meal aspect has been overemphasized to the detriment of the Sacrifice and its completion by the ordained priest. I report, you decide.

In a "spirit" of post-Vatican II Eucharistic theology, the communion of the priest has completely been obscured by a theology that all eat and consume the meal (note that it isn't called the "Sacrificial Victim or Holocaust.")

The very clear theology of the Sacrifice of the Mass prior to the Council was that the priest consume the sacrifice first in order to complete the Sacrifice. This truth is still paramount to the Ordinary Form of the Mass but never taught because many feel that it denigrates the Laity's Communion and their baptismal priesthood which is viewed on par with the ordained priesthood.

In fact, in some places trendy priests allowed the laity to receive first and then the priest receives what is left over at the end of the laity's communion! On top of that a similar abuse, but not entirely as egregious, which I was taught to do in the seminary and which we did the first five years of my ordination was to have the Eucharistic Ministers come up at the Sign of Peace. The priest would give each EMCH their host in the hand and then all, including the priest would receive together as though the EMCH's were concelebrants. Then they would approach the altar for their particular chalice and the priest and laity would drink at the same time and then each would go to their station.

You can see the corrupt theology at work here that progressive liturgists were shoving down the throat of the Church collective. The ordained priest is only a leader and the priesthood of the laity is no different than that of the ordained. That is not the theology, doctrine or dogma of the Mass in either form or any recognized rite of the Catholic Church but how many priests and laity know that today?

The blurring of the role of the ordained priest with the role of the common priesthood of all the baptized has been the single biggest culprit in the corruption of the Church and her sacramental system and has led to the diminution of the role of the ordained priest in the life of the Church and compromised priestly vocations. Of course, progressives like this because then they can have their way and open up the priesthood to married men and women.

The progressives knew what they were doing and were/are gleeful for the confusion of the various degrees of the priesthood in the Church today and for the decline in vocations. It fits their agenda rather nicely.


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