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When Lay Ministers Take Holy Communion to the Sick
Catholic Exchange.com ^ | 12-02-05 | P)ete Vere

Posted on 12/02/2005 9:15:56 AM PST by Salvation

by Pete Vere, JCL

Other Articles by Pete Vere, JCL
When Lay Ministers Take Holy Communion to the Sick
12/02/2005


The Second Vatican Council, in its Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, speaks of the Holy Eucharist as the source and the summit of our spiritual life. This means the Holy Eucharist is the source from which all other blessings flow, as well as the summit to which all of our spiritual works are directed.

In This Article...
Canon Law and the Lay Minister of Holy Communion
Pastoral Principles for Lay Ministers
Ordinary Visits to the Sick, the Elderly, and the Infirm

Canon Law and the Lay Minister of Holy Communion

Ideally, Catholics should approach the Eucharist during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Nevertheless, it is not always possible for Christ’s faithful to do so without grave inconvenience. In the case of sickness, this grave inconvenience may be physical or it may be moral. If the sickness deprives the individual of all his energy and thus he lacks the strength to get out of bed, then the grave inconvenience is physical. If the person is able to get out of bed and move around, but his illness is a highly contagious disease, then the grave inconvenience is moral in that he ought not risk the health of the general public.

Regardless of whether the illness causes moral or physical impossibility, the Church is still obliged, insofar as it is possible, to meet the spiritual needs of her faithful. From these needs arise the Church’s ancient pastoral practice of visiting the sick. This practice includes taking the Eucharist to the elderly, the sick and the infirm. It involves sharing in prayer and the word of God during these visits. These eucharistic visits may take place in the home, at the hospital bed, or in any institution that provides basic care and day-to-day living arrangements to the elderly, the sick and the infirm.

A minister of Holy Communion typically encounters three types of situation when bringing the Communion to the sick. The first is a regular visit to someone suffering from the effects of age, illness or infirmity. The second concerns a visit to someone who is dying. In this situation, the Church refers to the Holy Eucharist as Viaticum. This last word means “food for the journey,” keeping in mind that death is a journey into the afterlife. And the third situation concerns a sick or dying child. A lay minister of Holy Communion should be aware of how to proceed in each situation.

A minister of Holy Communion is simply a baptized Catholic who lawfully takes the Eucharist to other Catholics. Canon 910 distinguishes between an ordinary minister of Holy Communion and an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. Ordinarily, the Church entrusts bishops, priests, and deacons with the ministry of taking Holy Communion to the sick. Thus clergy are ordinary ministers of Holy Communion.

When a layperson takes the Eucharist to the sick, he or she acts as an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. In other words, he or she acts in an extraordinary capacity because the priests and deacons are unable to meet the needs of all the Catholics in a specific area. A common example is that of a priest who pastors a large flock within a geographically dispersed parish, without any available permanent deacon or assistant pastor to help him.

In keeping with canon 910, a layperson may become an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion in one of two ways. The first is by law. This applies to any layman who receives the stable ministry of acolyte. According to canon law, an acolyte automatically becomes an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, in much the same way that a deacon becomes by law an ordinary minister of Holy Communion upon his ordination. Subsequently, the acolyte has precedence over any other potential extraordinary minister of Holy Communion.

Yet what happens when the number of clergy and acolytes within a given parish is insufficient to meet the pastoral needs of every sick parishioner? Sometimes it is simply impossible for the clergy and acolytes to take the Eucharist to every sick parishioner. Fortunately, the Church does not abandon her sheep in these circumstances. Having foreseen such a need, canon 230 provides for the possibility of other lay people fulfilling the duties of extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. Yet they may only do so when the number of clergy and acolytes are insufficient to carry out this duty in a timely and orderly or fashion.

Pastoral Principles for Lay Ministers

A lay minister of Holy Communion should always maintain open communication with the pastor, as well as any other priest or deacon who oversees the layperson’s ministry to the sick. Good communication is important for two reasons. First, it insures that the layperson fully understands his or her proper boundaries as a lay minister in taking the Eucharist to the sick. The extraordinary minister of Holy Communion fulfills a certain ministerial function that is ordinarily carried out by a priest or deacon. As a lay minister, the extraordinary minister of Holy Communion does not replace the pastor or any other clergy.

Second, good communication facilitates the pastor’s capacity to exercise wise pastoral judgment in his day-to-day ministry. A priest can only base his pastoral decisions upon the information available to him. If a priest requires the assistance of lay people to take Holy Communion to the sick, then the priest will also likely rely upon his lay ministers to act as his eyes and his ears during their pastoral visits to the sick and the homebound. In practical terms, the lay minister should make every attempt to administer Holy Communion within the larger context of a pastoral visit to the sick, the aged, and the infirm. If possible, the pastoral minister should inquire about the seriousness of the illness or infirmity. If the person’s health has substantially worsened since the last visit, then the lay minister should immediately report this to the pastor.

Another pastoral principle is that proper reverence should be shown toward the Eucharist at all times. This includes the time spent transporting and handling the Holy Eucharist. The present author knows of one particularly egregious incident in which a minister placed the Holy Eucharist in an envelope and sent it to his sick and elderly parishioners via regular postal mail. Not only is this highly inappropriate, it is a sacrilege. If done for a sacrilegious purpose, such an action even carries an automatic excommunication.

A third important pastoral principle concerns the right to receive Holy Communion. In keeping with canon 912, every baptized Catholic has the right to receive the Holy Eucharist unless he or she is prohibited by canon law. A lay minister of Holy Communion must always be mindful of this fundamental right when approached for Holy Communion. Because this concerns a basic right of every Catholic, a lay minister must presume that a baptized Catholic who presents him- or herself for Holy Communion is not prohibited by law. In practical terms, this means a lay minister of Holy Communion should probably not refuse someone Holy Communion unless instructed to do so by the diocesan bishop or the pastor of the parish.

The fourth important pastoral principle concerns the purpose of pastoral ministry. It is to serve Christ’s faithful. A lay minister to the sick does not assume a higher place within the local church community upon becoming an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. To illustrate this point, one of the author’s friends owned a Catholic bookstore. The author recalls an amusing incident while visiting his friend at work, in which a laywoman came into the store, picked out some books, and proceeded to the counter. She then demanded the same clergy discount as the parish priest. When the author’s friend asked why, the woman answered that Father had just appointed her the parish’s newest extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. She became indignant when the author’s friend politely turned her down.

While only God can judge the woman’s heart, it appears that this woman had forgotten the purpose of ministry. It is to serve God through service to one’s neighbor. Others will perceive the conduct of a lay minister in carrying out his or her ministry as a reflection of the Church. Thus a lay minister should remain Christ-like in his or her conduct, as well as focused upon the purpose of his or her ministry. The context of his or her ministry is visiting and administering Holy Communion to the sick, the elderly, and the infirm.

Fifth, a lay minister should observe the proper liturgical rite when taking Holy Communion to the sick. Depending upon the particular circumstances, there are several liturgical rites a layperson may use outside of the Mass. A lay minister should consult with the pastor when he or she is uncertain which rite to use. A lay minister should also prepare carefully, making sure that he or she is familiar with the rite and completely understands it. If the lay minister remains uncertain about a prayer, a reading, or an action to be carried out during the rite, he or she should consult with the pastor.

Ordinary Visits to the Sick, the Elderly, and the Infirm

A lay minister of Holy Communion may be called to visit the sick in a number of different surroundings. These may include a private homes, hospital rooms, or nursing homes. There may be one sick person to visit or there may be several. Some will suffer the physical and mental effects of sickness, age or infirmity more strongly than others. Whenever it is possible, celebrating the Rite of Communion and the Celebration of the Word should be part of a more comprehensive visit with the sick.

Because there is a short form and a long form of this rite, the lay minister of Holy Communion should carefully weigh each of the aforementioned facts. For instance, the long form is generally considered more appropriate for communal celebrations where those gathered are just beginning to feel the affects of their illness, infirmity, and age. Thus this rite is more appropriate in retirement homes or assisted living facilities, where the sick and the elderly are gathered in great numbers and remain highly functional.

On the other hand, the shorter form may be used when visiting a widow or an elderly couple in their own home, especially when neither friends nor family are present. Of course a minister of Holy Communion should always use the shorter rite when the health of the individual has degenerated past the point where he or she can comfortably partake in the longer form.

These factors also help the lay minister to determine the level to which the sick, the elderly, and the infirm are capable of actively participating within the liturgy. If their condition is weak, their capacity to participate may be restricted to minimal responses. Some may not even be capable of those. On the other hand, others may be capable of sharing in the readings and, in the case of communal celebrations, assisting the lay minister in presiding over the rite. Of course the lay minister should also invite friends, family, and those who care for the sick to participate in the liturgy.

Alternatively, the person may not have or be in close contact with friends and family. Sadly, many of today’s sick and elderly suffer from the poverty of loneliness and neglect. In such cases it is all the more important that the lay minister take the necessary time to inquire directly of the person about his or her condition. Not only does this keep the lay minister abreast of what is happening, information that he or she may subsequently need to share with the pastor, but it also provides the sick with much-needed human contact. This alone is a tremendous comfort to those who lack anyone else with whom to share their daily burdens. Nevertheless, the lay minister should avoid imposing conversation or an extended visit where an individual’s condition is too weak to allow for it. Sometimes, simply sitting by the sick person’s bedside and quietly praying brings the most comfort.

Finally, while the Church still prescribes a fast of one hour from all food and drink prior to receiving the Holy Eucharist, canon 919 dispenses the elderly and the sick from this requirement. Additionally, recognizing that they, too, require their strength, the Church also dispenses those who care for the sick and the elderly from the requirements of the eucharistic fast.

The Eucharist is the source of the summit of every Catholic’s life of faith. It is in partaking of Holy Communion that Catholics receive the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ. It is important that Catholics not be deprived of the opportunity to receive the Blessed Sacrament due to illness, age, or infirmity. Yet ordinary ministers of Holy Communion cannot always fill the great need among Christ’s faithful. Therefore extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion must be properly prepared according to both pastoral theology and canon law to fulfill this need in taking the Eucharist to the sick.

© Copyright 2005 Catholic Exchange


Pete Vere is a canon lawyer and a Catholic journalist. He recently co-authored
Surprised by Canon Law: 150 Questions Catholics Ask About Canon Law (Servant Books) with Michael Trueman and More Catholic Than the Pope (Our Sunday Visitor) with Patrick Madrid. He lives with his wife and two daughters in Sault Ste. Marie, Canada.



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KEYWORDS: canonlaw; holycommunion; layministers; reverence; sick
For your information and continued discussion--
1 posted on 12/02/2005 9:15:58 AM PST by Salvation
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To: All

Excellent information here.


2 posted on 12/02/2005 9:16:23 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: nickcarraway; sandyeggo; Siobhan; Lady In Blue; NYer; american colleen; Pyro7480; livius; ...
Catholic Discussion Ping!

Please notify me via FReepmail if you would like to be added to or taken off the Catholic Discussion Ping List.

3 posted on 12/02/2005 9:17:10 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Salvation
Just to note, in the Orthodox Church, a priest will always perform this function. This has an added benefit of allowing the communicant to receive confession prior to taking the Eucharist.
4 posted on 12/02/2005 9:18:58 AM PST by FormerLib (Kosova: "land stolen from Serbs and given to terrorist killers in a futile attempt to appease them.")
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To: FormerLib

I believe that if those lay ministers taking Communion receive the message that the sick person would like to go to Confession, that they immediately notify the priest.

Also the priest is notified if the patient is near death and asks to receive the Annointing of the Sick (what we used to called Extreme Unction.)


5 posted on 12/02/2005 9:22:49 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Salvation
...the Annointing of the Sick (what we used to called Extreme Unction.)

The Orthodox have always used the term "Annointing of the Sick". I was aware of the difference in terminology but wasn't aware that the Roman Catholic Church had changed theirs.

6 posted on 12/02/2005 9:25:33 AM PST by FormerLib (Kosova: "land stolen from Serbs and given to terrorist killers in a futile attempt to appease them.")
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To: FormerLib
I was aware of the difference in terminology but wasn't aware that the Roman Catholic Church had changed theirs.

Not only was the terminology changed, the whole sacrament was. If I had a loved one in danger of death, I would insist on Extreme Unction, I expect them to do the same for me when I am dying.

7 posted on 12/02/2005 9:31:35 AM PST by murphE (These are days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed but his own. --G.K. Chesterton)
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To: FormerLib
Extreme Unction is, in Latin, unctio in extremis.

A translation of that Latin phrase into modern English vernacular is "anointing of those close to death."

In extremis generally means "in dire circumstances."

8 posted on 12/02/2005 9:32:09 AM PST by wideawake
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To: Salvation

My 90 year-old mother gladly receives Communion nearly every week from a wonderful woman who is a Eucharistic minister.


9 posted on 12/02/2005 9:35:50 AM PST by syriacus (There oughtta be a law -- that the image of every pill sold in the US is on one government website)
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To: FormerLib

Do Catholic Churches have Antidoron?

http://www.orthodoxwiki.org/Antidoron


10 posted on 12/02/2005 9:36:37 AM PST by x5452
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To: murphE
The whole sacrament was not changed. You can't insist on "extreme unction" without at the same time insisting on the sacrament of anointing. The only real difference is that it can be administered in event of any grave illness, potentially mortal surgery etc. But that's not a change in the sacrament. The "old" Extreme Unction could have been administered in event of grave illness. What was changed was the customary definition of grave illness and the customs surrounding when to summon a priest for last rites. When and how the sacrament can be and customarily is administered has changed but the "sacrament" itself has not been changed. And, indeed, the custom of restricting it to the very last minute itself represents a slow development over time. It wasn't always customary to administer it as restrictively as it was in the "good old days"; some of the restrictiveness was lifted.

It is, however, being abused and is being administered routinely and in non-grave illnesses. That's wrong and bishops should put an end to it. But that's not what was prescribed by the changes in discipline. Nothing has changed doctrinally, only rules and regulations, matters of discipline have changed, and the new discipline is being misused and abused. The translations for the rite can certainly be improved etc. but simply to say that a new sacrament was introduced and you are going to ask for the old one reflects a misunderstanding of what was changed. Do you really think the Church can change her sacraments???

11 posted on 12/02/2005 9:50:40 AM PST by Dionysiusdecordealcis
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To: x5452
Do Catholic Churches have Antidoron?

Antidoron (from Greek, meaning "instead of the gifts") is the remaining bread from a loaf of prosphora after the Lamb has been removed for the Holy Eucharist. It is blessed immediately after the epiclesis during the Divine Liturgy and is given by the priest to the faithful after the service.

Prosphora (Greek for "offering") is bread prepared for use in the Divine Liturgy. A portion of it, known as the lamb (or amnon) is cut out during the proskomedia which is consecrated during the Divine Liturgy to be the Eucharist, while the rest is cut up for the antidoron, the blessed bread distributed at the end of the liturgy.

Catholics use unleavend bread. There is no analog to cutting the center "Lamb" out of the bread. Our Eucharistic bread is in the form of flat disks and all is consecrated during the Eucharistic prayer.

SD

12 posted on 12/02/2005 10:02:40 AM PST by SoothingDave
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To: SoothingDave

Do any of the Catholic churches use actual bread rather than the disks?


13 posted on 12/02/2005 10:04:40 AM PST by x5452
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To: x5452
Do any of the Catholic churches use actual bread rather than the disks?

I can only speak about the Latin rite, though I understand that the Eastern rites can use leavened bread.

For the Latin rite, only flour and water are allowed to be used to make the bread. If a Latin rite Church used a different bread would certainly be illicit and would very likely invalidate the sacrament.

SD

14 posted on 12/02/2005 10:07:47 AM PST by SoothingDave
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To: SoothingDave

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01562b.htm


15 posted on 12/02/2005 10:12:27 AM PST by x5452
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To: SoothingDave

Found this too:
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01349d.htm


16 posted on 12/02/2005 10:18:04 AM PST by x5452
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To: x5452

Not to start a fight but the unleavened hosts used by Catholics is actual bread just as the unleavened bread used by Jews at Passover is actual bread.


17 posted on 12/02/2005 10:25:32 AM PST by Petrosius
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To: Salvation

I love this opportunity to ask all Extraordinary Ministers to think about one point:

Y'all are wonderful people and it is a blessing to receive the Eucharist when ill and infirm, but I have ask you to remember that lots of the medications and especially big doses of pain medication cause the mouth to dry out badly.

I had one person give me an entire host which I almost couldn't manage because there was no saliva left...the host got stuck..and stuck and stuck....

Is it possible for only a small piece to be given? Or is it permissible to drink some water to get it down?

It's a minor point, but for those who are inpatient from time to time it's one of those facts of life. ( -;


18 posted on 12/02/2005 10:37:45 AM PST by OpusatFR
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To: OpusatFR

The answer to both question is yes. I would be hesitant, however, to having the extraordinary minister of Communion, rather than a priest, break the host.


19 posted on 12/02/2005 10:42:15 AM PST by Petrosius
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To: OpusatFR
Is it possible for only a small piece to be given?

Yes, of course. The smallest piece discernable as bread contains the Fullness of the Sacrament.

Or is it permissible to drink some water to get it down?

I would think you could drink some water first to get rid of the dryness, and then take the Host.

Of course, nothing in the Faith requires you to choke to death, so if you need a drink, take one. I think if possible one should drink first, then take Communion, rather than "washing it down" and co-mingling the sacred and the orindary.

SD

20 posted on 12/02/2005 10:44:34 AM PST by SoothingDave
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To: Salvation

When I was living in Valdez (Alaska), I was a Eucharistic Minister, and part of my duties included carrying the Precious Body to the people in the residential care facility in the town. There were about six individuals who were advanced enough mentally to understand and receive. I was always impressed by their deep and simple piety. It was a lovely and moving experience.


21 posted on 12/02/2005 10:56:12 AM PST by redhead (Alaska: Step out of the bus and into the food chain...)
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To: x5452
"Do any of the Catholic churches use actual bread rather than the disks?"

Yes. The Byzantine Catholic rite uses homemade leavened bread made with the purest ingredients. I believe the Orthodox also use such a loaf.

22 posted on 12/02/2005 10:59:38 AM PST by redhead (Alaska: Step out of the bus and into the food chain...)
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To: Petrosius
When I was given (albeit erroneously) communion in Catholic Church/School (long before I was baptized) it was something vaguely similar to a cracker.

Is that the norm or is there variation from church to church?
23 posted on 12/02/2005 11:15:15 AM PST by x5452
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To: x5452
Yes, that is the norm, a thin wafer made only from wheaten flour and water. The size and thickness can vary a little. There are some so thin that once in the mouth it sticks to the roof of the mouth and is impossible to dislodge until in completely dissolves. Others are a bit thicker with an appearance more of bread.
24 posted on 12/02/2005 11:20:57 AM PST by Petrosius
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To: Petrosius

The one I recall was the thin/sticky one you mention.

One thing I do like about Orthodox Communion is the wine and bread being given together at once. Though my memory of specifics in Catholic church is hazy at best.


25 posted on 12/02/2005 11:44:53 AM PST by x5452
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To: x5452
Communion under both species was reintroduced after Vatican II. Its usage varies from church to church. There are three options: 1) Communion from the chalice, 2) Communion from the chalice by using a small tube (Yes, it is a straw. This, using a gold or silver tube, was a practice in the Middle Ages. Its resemblance to a common straw, however, has made this option very rare today.), and 3) Communion by intinction with the Host. Because of our form of the Host this would be by dipping it in the chalice rather than dropping it in and then using a spoon as in the East. When used, option 1 is the one invariably used although option 3 is sometimes encountered. Option 2 is rarely, if ever, used.
26 posted on 12/02/2005 12:06:21 PM PST by Petrosius
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To: murphE; BlackElk
LOL

So, an entire Sacrament was changed, huh? Do you even know what a Sacrament is? If you do, please explain to us how the "whole Sacrament" was changed.

27 posted on 12/02/2005 3:03:23 PM PST by bornacatholic
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To: x5452

It is actual bread.


28 posted on 12/02/2005 3:04:37 PM PST by bornacatholic
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To: SoothingDave
Catholics use unleavend bread.

[cough] Latin Rite Catholics use unleavened bread.

The Byzantine Rite usage is identical to that of the Eastern Orthodox. I have never seen antidoron in a Byzantine Catholic church, but that may be a matter of local custom or celebrant's option.

29 posted on 12/02/2005 3:10:48 PM PST by Campion ("I am so tired of you, liberal church in America" -- Mother Angelica, 1993)
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To: bornacatholic

I've eaten bread, and I've had communion in Roman and Eastern churches. The Roman eucharist I am familiar with feels extremely processed. Manufactured.

I personally far prefer the inconsistency of home made or hand made bread. Leaven or no.


30 posted on 12/02/2005 4:02:24 PM PST by x5452
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To: FormerLib
This has an added benefit of allowing the communicant to receive confession prior to taking the Eucharist.

That's nice. I've had lay ministers bring me communion in the hospital or at home when I've had a baby and can't get to Mass (the last time, my three older children were also able to receive, as I couldn't get them to Mass), but it would be wonderful to have the opportunity for Confession as well.

31 posted on 12/02/2005 6:26:18 PM PST by Tax-chick ("You don't HAVE to be a fat pervert to speak out about eating too much and lack of morals." ~ LG)
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To: Dionysiusdecordealcis
The whole sacrament was not changed.

Sure it was.

THE MATTER OF THE SACRAMENT

According to Father Kilker, "the remote matter of Extreme Unction is oil of olives. The "proximate matter" is the oil of olives blessed by the Bishop. This the Council of Trent definitely defined. "Intellexit enim Ecclesia materiam esse oleum ab episcopo benedictum" (Session XIV).

There is no doubt about what St. James meant when he said "oil of olives" (V:14). Initially the oil of the sick could be blessed by priests and even saintly laymen, but ever since the Council of Chalons in 813 canon law requires that it be blessed by a Bishop. In the Eastern Church it is customary for the oil to be blessed by the priest in the house of the sick person.

In the Latin church it has ever been the custom to employ pure unadulterated olive oil, to which a fragrant oleoresin called Balm or Balsam has been added. In some Eastern rites the practice of adding a little water as a symbol of Baptism, or of a little wine in memory of the good Samaritan, or even of the dust of the sepulchre of some saint, has long been in vogue.

Now this oil is blessed by the Bishop at the magnificent Mass of Maundy Thursday in Holy Week - a Mass so sacred that the Bishop is traditionally attended and assisted by twelve priests, seven deacons and seven sub-deacons in order to say it properly. The prayer reads: Emitte, quaesumus Domine, Spiritum sanctum tuum Paraclitum de coelis in hanc pinguedinem olivae, quam de viridi ligno producere dignatus es and refectionem mentis et corporis..." ("Send forth we pray, Your Holy Spirit, the Paraclite, from heaven into this rich substance of oil..." For Catholics the remote matter of Extreme Unction remains oil of olives and the proximate mattter, "the anointing with oil blessed by a bishop.

What then is the "matter" specified by Paul VI? in his new Rite of Anointing and Pastoral Care of the Sick (promulgated November 30, 1972)?151 The answer is any oil of plant origin - and pray - what oil is ultimately not of plant origin? Axle-grease, Vaseline and Mazola oil can satisfy the requirement. Further, the oil can be blessed by any priest who has the "faculty," and this faculty has been extended by the "Bishop's Committee on the Liturgy" to any priest "where didactic or catechetical reasons prompt it." The blessing has of course also been changed. No longer is the Holy Spirit invoked, but rather, it now reads:

"May your blessing come upon all who are anointed with this oil, that they may be freed from pain and illness and made well again in body and mind and soul." Notice also that the emphasis is almost entirely on the healing of illness, and not on the forgiveness of sins.

Let us next consider the "Form" of the Sacrament, or the words that the priest uses when anointing the patient "in danger of death." The traditional words are: "PER ISTAM SANCTAM UNCTIONEM ET SUAM PIISSIMAM MISERICORDIAM, INDULGEAT TIBI DOMINUS QUIDQUID PER... DELIQUISTI" ("Through this Holy Unction or oil, and through the great goodness of His mercy, may God pardon thee whatever sins thou hast committed [by evil use of sight - smell, touch etc. - depending on the organ anointed.")

Needless to say, this form also has been changed by the post-Conciliar Church to "PER ISTAM SANCTAM UNCTIONEM ET SUAM PIISSIMAM MISERICORDIAM ADIUVET TE DOMINUS GRATIA SPRITUS SANCTI, UT A PECCATIS LIBERATUM TE SOLVAT ADQUE PROPITIUS ALLEVIAT." The semi-official translation given out through the Holy See Press Office is: "Through this holy anointing and His most loving mercy, may the Lord assist you by the grace of the Holy Spirit, so that when you have been freed from your sins, he may save you and in his goodness raise you up." Another translation taken from Father Keating's article is closer to the original: "Through this holy anointing and His great love for you, may the Lord who freed you from sin, heal you and extend his saving grace to you..."152

The official translation provided in DOL 408 is "through this holy anointing may the Lord in His love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit. May the Lord who frees you from sin save you and raise you up."

Once again we must ask whether this change in the form is substantial. Pre Vatican II theologians are virtually unanimous in stating that the essential words of the form - the words that convey its essential meaning and are therefore "substantial" - are "INDULGEAT TIBI DOMINUS" - may God pardon thee. Most also insist upon "quidquid deliquisti" and "sanctam unctionem." After all, as Leo XIII said, "the sacraments... ought... to signify the grace which they effect" if they are to "effect what they signify." And in the present situation this is the health of the soul which is effected by strengthening of the soul through grace and by the remission of sins..." (Summa, III, Suppl. 29, 1). Now the new form OMITS all these critical words, and only asks that God "heal" one. While it is to be admitted that throughout history several valid forms have been in use, since the Council of Florence the form has been fixed.

If some of these alternative forms used the word "parcat," "remittat," or even "sanat" in the place of "indulgeat," this in no way affected the substance of the form. However, to OMIT the critical phrase entirely is to remove from the "Form" its ability to absolve. What results is a change in "meaning," and to make a change of such a "substantial" nature almost certainly renders the form invalid. Even if the "blessing" is preceded by a valid absolution - which in many cases is also questionable - one is deprived of the other sacramental effects that are so important.153 Should an older priest desire to use the traditional form, he should know that it is specifically forbidden by Paul VI's Apostolic Constitution.

The post-Conciliar rite is named "Anointing of the Sick." Clearly then, if the post-Conciliar "blessing" is upon the sick, the ersatz sacrament should no longer be limited to those "in danger of death." Twice during the Second Vatican Council the Fathers rejected suggestions that the requirement of "danger of death" for the reception of the Anointing be omitted. As Father Keating points out however, "the new rite does what the Council was not able to do."154 In contrast to the negative wording of Canon 940 which states "Extreme Unction is not able to be offered except to the faithful, who, having attained the use of reason, fall into the danger of death from illness or old age," the new rite can be administered to those who are ill, but in no danger of death whatsoever.

...and there's a lot more.

SOURCE

32 posted on 12/02/2005 6:55:25 PM PST by murphE (These are days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed but his own. --G.K. Chesterton)
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To: bornacatholic
LOL

So, an entire Sacrament was changed, huh? Do you even know what a Sacrament is? If you do, please explain to us how the "whole Sacrament" was changed

So nice to hear from you again, and you're just as sweet as you always were.

33 posted on 12/02/2005 7:01:33 PM PST by murphE (These are days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed but his own. --G.K. Chesterton)
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To: murphE

It looks impressive but the actual arguments are petty--typical of Traditionalist parsing. A shift in focus, I would grant that that took place, but "the whole sacrament changed" is nonsense. If you'd admit the latter is hypebolic we might actually be able to talk about whether the shift in focus was wise or not. I would not go to the stake for the wisdom of the shift in focus, but labeling it a change of the entire sacrament gets things off on the wrong foot and pretty much precludes any intelligent discussion.

In defense of the shift in focus: the changes make this sacrament more clearly what it is: anointing of those gravely ill (in extremis) instead of confusing this sacrament with the others that, where possible, should accompany it: sacramental confession and viaticum/Eucharist. The modification in licit matter is not earthshaking in the way that a modification in Eucharistic matter would be. Your reductio ad absurdum (vasoline, axle-grease) sounds impressive but is meaningless, even wrong-headed. In the first place, just what is vasoline made of? Axle-grease is not made of vegetable matter and I doubt that vasoline is. So the accusation in fact is false.

In criticism of the shift in focus: there really is no reason why continuing to specify olive oil would have been a problem. The modifications, like much of what was done after Vatican II, are not immune from reasonable criticism. But wholesale dismissal such as you offer only means there'll be no reasonable discourse about the matter.

If it makes you feel better to reject the changes on the grounds that the whole sacrament has been changed, so be it. I have no illusions that you will be brought away from your conviction that the "whole sacrament was changed."


34 posted on 12/02/2005 7:55:05 PM PST by Dionysiusdecordealcis
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To: x5452

From the definition, it looks like what you are talking about is consecrated hosts. Yes, these are kept in the tabernacle.


35 posted on 12/02/2005 8:07:23 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: murphE
Furthermore, the last paragraph of this article is just plain disingenuous, if not dishonest. The author slyly compares the old canon law statement with the language of the new rite of anointing. If he had compared old canon law with new canon law, he would have had to admit that the 1983 code does specify "dangerously ill" (periculose aegrotantes"--1983 code, Can. 998)--the sacrament cannot be administered to anyone who is ill for any reason at all, as the author falsely claims.

Canon 1004 of the 1983 Code goes on to specify that the sacrament may be administered to anyone after the age of reason who "begins to be in danger due to sickness or old age" (ministrari potest fideli qui, adepto rationis usu, ob infirmitatem vel enium in periculo incipit versari). Then it goes on to say that it can be repeated but only if the "person again falls into a serious sickness after convalescence or whenever a more serious crisis develops during the same sickness." The only change from canon 940 of the 1917 code is that "danger of death" has become "danger." But what danger exists when someone is ill? That he won't recover from his illness. If someone is sick with a cold he is not in any danger whatsoever. He'll recover. But if that turns into pneumonia, he's in greater danger; still likely to recover. We talk about "danger" precisely in relation to the possiblity of not recovering, of dying. The specification that one to be anointed must be "in danger, due to sickness or old age" makes clear that "danger" has a reference to death. The only real change is that the proximity of death, the degree of danger of death, is deliberately lessened.

Yes, there's a change here, but a slight one. To say the entire sacrament has changed is hyperbole and the way the author of this article tries to justify such hyperbole is honest. He thought no one would notice how he compared apples and oranges: canon law 1917 with post-Vatican II liturgical rite. If someone submitted a research paper to me with this kind of disingenuous argumentation, he'd get a well-deserved F.

36 posted on 12/02/2005 8:08:59 PM PST by Dionysiusdecordealcis
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To: bornacatholic

Unleavened bread with no yeast in it.


37 posted on 12/02/2005 8:10:28 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Dionysiusdecordealcis

Correction to my # 36: "and the way the author of this article tries to justify such hyperbole is honest" should be "dishonest."


38 posted on 12/02/2005 8:10:41 PM PST by Dionysiusdecordealcis
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To: OpusatFR

**Is it possible for only a small piece to be given? Or is it permissible to drink some water to get it down? **

Yes and yes.


39 posted on 12/02/2005 8:11:53 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Dionysiusdecordealcis

What about the words in the form of the sacrament? Sorry, but if I am granted the grace of a happy death, please God, it will be with a traditional priest at my side administering the sacrament of Extreme Unction.


40 posted on 12/02/2005 8:29:16 PM PST by murphE (These are days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed but his own. --G.K. Chesterton)
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To: murphE
LOL Your "source" is a schismatic website run by a faux priest. And you consider that authoritative.

You folks sure no how to pick 'em :)

41 posted on 12/03/2005 1:54:50 AM PST by bornacatholic
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To: murphE
"FR. Moderator" biography.

M.E. Morrison was "ordained" in California in a Protestant church (Ebenezer Lutheran Chirch) by Thaddeus Alioto, a married man claiming to be a bishop (because he had been "consecrated" a bishop by Wallace David de Ortega Maxey).

De Ortega Maxey had been "consecrated" numerous times by various North American Old Catholic bishops (whom even the Old Catholic Churches in Europe deny have valid orders). De Ortega Maxey also *claimed* to have been consecrated by Antoine Aneed.

Aneed's story is that he was consecrated a bishop by a RC Eastern Rite bishop in Syria and sent to America. Both the Vatican and the Syrian Patriarchate involved denounced the story as a fabrication.

If you have any doubts over the veracity of my statements as to where Morrison got "ordained," just ask his fellow "independent" priest, Merril Adamson. He was "ordained" in the same ceremony. I've a written statement from him confirming the fact.

This is important not because of anything Morrison states on the internet, but because he dresses up his statements as coming from a RC priest.

Even the devil can quote Scripture.

Anyone e-mailing to Morrison's list a request for the facts of his claimed ordination will be dropped.

It never ceases to amaze me how sedevacantists can be so cock-sure JP II is a fraud, yet swallow hook, line and sinker any number of bogus clerics; just because the frauds sing the music sedes like to hear.

*Years ago I joined Traditio and made the boldened request. I was dropped from the list immediately. I felt so rejected :)

42 posted on 12/03/2005 2:00:00 AM PST by bornacatholic
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To: Salvation

Thank you for that. Excellent information.


43 posted on 12/03/2005 6:09:46 AM PST by DaGman
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To: bornacatholic
On your death bed you can request Sacrament of the Sick, suit yourself, when my time comes I want Extreme Unction, administered by a traditional priest. God willing, I will be granted this grace of a happy death.

Although conversing with you is always a little slice of heaven, and it is terribly difficult to tear myself away, I must. Buh-bye!

44 posted on 12/03/2005 6:59:13 AM PST by murphE (These are days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed but his own. --G.K. Chesterton)
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To: murphE

Dying extra ecclesia is never happy. But, that is what free will is all about. Have a profitable Advent


45 posted on 12/03/2005 10:23:12 AM PST by bornacatholic
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To: bornacatholic; murphE
Dying extra ecclesia is never happy.

So all those who died with Extreme Unction as a sacrament, during the previous nineteen hundred and seventy plus years were unhappy? Or, only those during the last thirty some years who received the traditional sacrament rather than a "sacrament of the sick"?

46 posted on 12/03/2005 7:42:01 PM PST by vox_freedom (Fear no evil)
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To: Petrosius

'The answer to both question is yes. I would be hesitant, however, to having the extraordinary minister of Communion, rather than a priest, break the host.'

Theres no prohibition from breaking the host by Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion (the correct title). I have done it myself during mass when the lines are long and supplies of the Body of Christ are running low. The practice is not encouraged and should be done only in unusual circumstances. The first route should always be to seek additional hosts from another EMHC or the priests or deacons.

When taking Communion to the sick or infirm, the host may be broken into as small a piece as needed. The remaining pieces of the Body of Christ should then be consumed by the EMHC according to the normal regulations of Communion.


47 posted on 12/05/2005 9:59:14 AM PST by OriginalChristian (Viva Cristo Rey!)
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