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The Fifty-Year Descent to Footnote 351: Our Progressive Desensitization to the Most Holy Eucharist

We did not wake up one fine day in 2017 to find ourselves suddenly confronted with Eucharistic sacrilege being promoted from on high. There was a long, slow process that led to this moment. It consisted in the gradual dilution of the sacredness of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and of the Blessed Sacrament at its heart, with institutionally tolerated sacrilege along the way. Fifty years of desacralization has ended in the temerity of contradicting the entire Catholic tradition about the most holy of all the Church’s mysteries.

The first major step was the allowance of communion in the hand while standing—a sharp break from the deeply-ingrained practice of many centuries of kneeling in adoration at the altar rail and receiving on the tongue, like a baby bird being fed by its parent (as we see in countless medieval depictions of the pelican that has wounded her breast in order to feed her chicks). This change had the obvious effect of making people think the Holy Eucharist wasn’t so mysterious and holy after all. If you can just take it in your hand like ordinary food, it might as well be a potato chip distributed at a party.[1] The feeling of awe and reverence towards the Blessed Sacrament was systematically diminished and undermined through this modernist reintroduction of an ancient practice that had long since been discontinued by the Church in her pastoral wisdom. Nor, as has been well documented, did the faithful themselves request the abolition of the custom of receiving on the tongue while kneeling; it was imposed by the self-styled “experts.”[2]

The second major step was the allowance of lay ministers of communion. This reinforced the perception that the Church had given up all that stuff about the priest being essentially different from the laity, about the Mass as a divine sacrifice and the Eucharist as the Bread of Angels that only anointed hands are fit to handle. True, a priest still had to say the magic words, but after that, Jack and Jill could come up, take bowls and cups, and hand out the tokens of club membership.

The effect of these “reforms” and others like them (the replacement of majestic and mysterious Latin with everyday vernacular, the substitution of guitar and piano ditties for pipe organ and chant, the turning around of the priest to face the people like a talkshow host, the removal of altar rails, the decentering of tabernacles, the uglification of vestments and vessels, and more) was to weaken and corrupt the faith of the people in the Mass as a true and proper sacrifice and in the Eucharist as the true Body and Blood of Jesus. No wonder that after this, the idea of the Eucharistic fast, and of preparing oneself for communion by going to confession, went right out the window for the vast majority of people. The Church’s own pastors didn’t act as if they really believed these things anymore, so why should their flocks?

In short, we have lived through, and suffered under, half a century of ritual diminishment and symbolic contradiction of the Church’s faith in the sublime mysteries of the Body and Blood of Christ. As John Paul II and Benedict XVI lamented, there is scant evidence in our communities of any awareness of the distinction between worthy and unworthy communions—one of the most basic lessons children used to be taught in their catechism class.

Children in those primitive “pre-Vatican II days” were taught to practice virtue and avoid mortal sin because they should desire to be able to receive the Lord and be ever more perfectly united to Him, until they reached the glory of heaven where they would possess Him forever. They were taught that if one received the Lord in a state of mortal sin, one committed a further and a worse sin. They were taught that making a good confession, with sorrow for sin and an intention to avoid it in future, was enough to put this bad situation right and restore them to God’s friendship. Who could seriously assert that most Catholics believe any of this today, or that they would even recognize, much less understand, the concepts?[3]

Today, at least in certain Western countries, nearly everyone goes up for communion when the time comes. It’s just “what you do at Mass.” Hardly anyone goes to confession; hardly anyone refrains from receiving, out of a consciousness of sin; and rare is the priest who ever preaches about having the right dispositions for communion. (Contrast this with St. John Vianney, who preached relentlessly about these things, and greatly intensified his parish’s commitment to the sacrament of confession and to frequent communion. It’s not for nothing that he’s the patron saint of parish priests. Patrons are meant to be imitated.)

Thus was the ground devilishly prepared for the final stage, in which any impediments to communion are theoretically and practically dissolved. In a general situation where the few Catholics who still attend Mass all receive, it would seem cruel and unusual punishment to single out a handful of so-called “divorced and remarried” people for special treatment: “You are not allowed to go to communion, but meanwhile, the self-abusing and fornicating teens, the contracepting couples, the families who sometimes skip Sunday Mass for sports events—all are welcome to come forward, as usual!”

This is the big picture that explains, to my mind, why the liberals or progressives in the Church are totally incapable of seeing why anyone would object to chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia with its nuclear footnote.[4] They do not really believe that the Mass is a true and proper sacrifice of Jesus Christ to the Most Holy Trinity; they do not really believe in transubstantiation and the Real Presence; they do not believe that one is eating and drinking the flesh and blood of God; they do not believe that one who eats and drinks unworthily is eating and drinking his own condemnation, just as those who eat worthily are seeding their souls and bodies for a glorious resurrection.

The Amorites, as we might call them, see “the Eucharist” as a fraternal gathering, a social event, an affirmation of human worth, a “celebration” of God’s “unconditional love,” and whatever other Hallmark slogans come to mind. Within the confines of this horizontal and superficial theology, there is no room for any requirements or prohibitions: everyone is welcome, and anything goes! Since the Eucharist is a meal symbolizing God’s welcome of the sinner, there is no reason to exclude anyone, for any reason, from partaking of the “table of plenty.”

Amoris Laetitia fits into this larger historical trajectory whereby the Mass has been stripped of its transcendent, mysterious, fearful and challenging sacrificial realism and pushed continually in the direction of an ordinary meal with ordinary folks doing ordinary things for a this-worldly end,[5] with a forced spontaneity and embarrassing banality that has failed to attract the overflow crowds predicted by Paul VI. At such a Mass, is there anything to do but receive communion? Who would ever think of going just for the sake of adoring God and contemplating His beauty? Opportunities and incentives for adoration are practically non-existent in the Novus Ordo, and beauty has fared no better, or rather much worse. In such circumstances, to place a barrier between a free meal and a guest who thinks well of himself for being there is unthinkable.[6]

In truth, the Mass is the unbloody sacrifice of the Cross, made present in our midst; it is simultaneously the heavenly life-giving wedding feast of the now-glorified Christ. The Eucharist is the sacrament of the one-flesh union of a bride adorned with grace and a Bridegroom who is her sole happiness.

I am not surprised to find that, at traditional Latin Masses around the world, including in the United States, one sees two related phenomena: a large number of the faithful availing themselves of confession, before and during Mass; and a fair number of the faithful who remain in the pews and do not go forward for communion. The interior triumphs of the one, the interior trials of the other, are known to God alone. But this much is obvious: they all came to worship Him. They came in response to His majesty. They came to fulfill a solemn obligation of the virtue of religion. Whether they are personally disposed to receive or not is a question at a different level. This is the sanity that prevails in the realm of tradition; it is the sanity that paves the way for sanctity.



[1] In a moving scene in Robert Hugh Benson’s novel By What Authority?, we read the following about the character Isabel’s experience of a Calvinist communion service: “The mahogany table had been brought down from the eastern wall to beneath the cupola, and stood there with a large white cloth, descending almost to the ground on every side; and a row of silver vessels, flat plates and tall new Communion cups and flagons, shone upon it. … The three ministers had communicated by now; and there was a rustle and clatter of feet as the empty seats in front, hung with houselling cloths, began to be filled.” Isabel sees some people receive kneeling, others standing. And all this at a ceremony of Protestants who expressly denied the Real Presence and the sacrificial nature of the Mass.

[2] There is an obvious difference between an original practice, such as early Christians receiving in the hand, and a later reintroduction of such a practice when it has long since become obsolete. In the former case, the practice is innocent. In the latter case, it amounts to a repudiation and a symbolic contradiction of the values represented by kneeling before the host and not handling it oneself.

[3] Msgr. Benson wrote this about his Anglican days: “I was an official in a church that did not seem to know her own mind, even in matters directly connected with the salvation of the soul.… Might I, or might I not, tell my penitents that they are bound to confess their mortal sins before Communion? … The smallest Roman Catholic child knew precisely how to be reconciled to God, and to receive His grace…” (A City Set on a Hill). Does not this Anglican’s description of the problem in his own communion sound frightfully close to what may be found today in the Roman Catholic Church?

[4] Or perhaps we should say footnotes, since there are several that are severely problematic.

[5] It is consistent with the love-blind embrace of the United Nations and the “Greenpeace” environmentalism of Laudato Si’.

[6] We can begin to see the magnitude of the sea change if we imagine what it would have been like had the Kasper Proposal been floated in 1965—the last year in which we can arguably say that we still had an integral and authentic Roman Rite throughout the entire Church (albeit already orphaned of its opening and closing prayers). There would have been stunned incredulity and righteous indignation. The proposal wouldn’t have lasted longer than a lit match. No churchman in his right mind would have countenanced it. Progressives today attack traditionalists equally for our love of the traditional liturgy, our dogmatic intransigence, and our commitment to objective morality. They are right see a deep and abiding connection between these things—a connection neatly summed up as lex orandi, lex credendi, lex vivendi.

303 thoughts on “The Fifty-Year Descent to Footnote 351: Our Progressive Desensitization to the Most Holy Eucharist”

  1. Up until 1975, the Tablet ( Brooklyn’s diocesan newspaper ) used to list five parishes every week that would have 40 Hours Nocturnal Adoration. That’s all gone , thanks to Vatican ll.
    “When the shepherd becomes a wolf, the first duty of the flock is to defend itself. The true children of Holy Church, at such times, are those who walk by the light of their Baptism, not the cowardly souls who, under the specious pretext of submission to the powers that be, delay their opposition to the enemy in the hope of receiving instructions which are neither necessary nor desirable.”
    -Dom Prosper Guéranger

    • Francis’ Fifth: A Synod, Humanae Vitae Milestone and More Decentralized Church
      The 81-year-old Pope will mark the fifth year of his pontificate March 13.
      by Ed Pentin
      The Holy Father is expected to visit Ireland in the summer, at some point during the World Meeting of Families in Dublin that takes place Aug. 21-26.
      Since the implosion of the faith in Ireland due to the clerical sex-abuse crisis and rampant secularism, the Pope will effectively be traveling to a country that once led the world in missionary outreach but is now on the Church’s periphery.
      His visit is also likely soon after a referendum on whether to repeal Ireland’s ban on abortion in almost all circumstances. The vote is expected to take place sometime in the summer.
      Many will be interested to see if Francis also becomes the first pontiff to visit Northern Ireland, once the focal point of the “Troubles” between Unionists wanting to remain part of the United Kingdom and Republicans aiming for a united Ireland. Pope St. John Paul II came close to making it there during his visit in 1979, but security prevented him from crossing the border.
      This was written by Edward Pentin over at Nat’l Catholic Reg.

      • The sooner people realize that this ‘Pope’ is not a believer, the better. I pray for his ‘conversion’ every day, because he is obviously in GREAT NEED of conversion. It’s not something we have to ‘wonder about’ any more.

      • Well, Bergoglio hates the Catholic Church even more than does Ian Paisley’s rabid Free Presbyterian sect, so maybe he will feel at home there. He might have a Mahatma Gandhi moment “I am a Catholic.. I am a Protestant…I am a filthy little Communist.”

  2. I like this line, as it rings true:

    “At such a Mass, is there anything to do but receive communion? Who would ever think of going just for the sake of adoring God and contemplating His beauty?”
    The mentality is exactly that – taking Holy Communion is just something you do when you get there, no matter even if you get there one minute before it is distributed.

    • People aren’t stupid. How can they be expected to take receiving the Holy Eucharist seriously, when all they see is an environment in which It is treated so casually as to be distributed by (pardon the image) morbidly obese women in way-too-tight sweatpants? (I wish I was making this up.)

    • Agreed. Also, regarding ” *taking* Holy Communion”… how many priests today have ever explained that we are also to *offer / give* ourselves entirely to the Lord in Holy Communion (after all, communion is mutual and reciprocal, or it is not genuine). This is where the “my sacrifice and yours” enters in… yet we have largely ignored the Sacrifice of the Mass which involves *giving* and we have emphasized the Communal Meal which involves everyone *getting some*… or even *taking* it on their own…

    • “…taking Holy Communion is just something you do when you get there, no matter even if you get there one minute before it is distributed.”

      I have witnessed this myself. (or folks who show up *after* the Gospel… or after the sermon)

      It is mind-boggling to me how any Catholic would have the gall to do it. [shaking head]

  3. Thank you, Professor—this is what has happened. I go to a NO parish for daily Mass and a TLM about twice a month on Sundays. The Sundays in the NO parish, with its show tunes, and self-congratulations ambience, are times of trial for me. It is as you say. God help us!

    • You’re lucky to have the old Latin Mass.
      During the North African campaign, a bunch of soldier boys had been on a long hike and they arrived in a little town called Cascina. The next morning being Sunday, several of the boys went to Church. A sergeant commanded the boys in Church and after the Chaplain had read the prayer, the text was taken up next. Those of the boys who had a prayer book took them out, but this one boy had only a deck of cards, and so he spread them out. The Sergeant saw the cards and said, “Soldier, put away those cards.”
      After the services was over, the soldier was taken prisoner and brought before the Provost Marshall. The Marshall said,
      “Sergeant, why have you brought this man here?”
      “For playing cards in church, Sir.”
      “And what have you to say for yourself, son?”
      “Much, Sir,” replied the soldier.
      The Marshall said, “I hope so, for if not I shall punish you more than any man was ever punished.”
      The soldier said, “Sir, I have been on the march for about six days. I have neither a Bible nor a prayer book, but I hope to satisfy you, Sir, with the purity of my intentions.” And with that, the boy started his story: “You see Sir, when I look at the Ace, it reminds me that there is but one God. And the Deuce reminds me that the Bible is divided into two parts, the Old and the New Testaments. When I see the Trey, I think of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
      And when I see the Four, I think of the four Evangelists who preached the Gospel; there was Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
      And when I see the Five, it reminds me of the five wise virgins who trimmed their lamps; there were ten of them: five were wise and were saved, five were foolish and were shut out.
      When I see the Six, it reminds me that in six days, God made this great heaven and earth.
      When I see the Seven, it reminds me that on the seventh day, God rested from His great work.
      And when I see the Eight, I think of the eight righteous persons God saved when He destroyed this earth; there was Noah, his wife, their sons and their wives.
      And when I see the Nine, I think of the lepers our Savior cleansed, and nine out of the ten didn’t even thank Him.
      When I see the Ten, I think of the Ten Commandments God handed down to Moses on a table of stone.
      When I see the King, it reminds me that there is but one King of Heaven, God Almighty.
      And when I see the Queen, I think of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who is Queen of Heaven.
      And the Jack or Knave is the Devil.When I count the number of spots on a deck of cards, I find 365, the number of days in a year. There are 52 cards, the number of weeks in a year. There are 4 suits, the number of weeks in a month. There are 12 picture cards, the number of months in a year. There are 13 tricks, the number of weeks in a quarter.
      So you see, Sir, my pack of cards serves me as a Bible, an Almanac and a Prayer Book.”
      (author unknown)

  4. It seems fairly disingenuous for John Paul II and Benedict XVI to lament the ground they themselves “devilishly prepared for the final stage, in which any impediments to communion are theoretically and practically dissolved.”

    • Can you cite a single instance where either St. John Paul II or Benedict XVI dissolved any impediments to the faithful making a worthy Communion? And please don’t submit as an example the underhanded methods that the USCCB and their forerunner had imposed by forcing the practice and then afterward, petitioning Rome to allow the (new) now established custom, of altar girls, Communion in the hand, extraordinary ministers and standing for Communion.

      • Canon 844.3 of John Paul II’s 1983 Code of Canon Law: “Catholic ministers may licitly administer the sacraments of penance, Eucharist,
        and anointing of the sick to members of the oriental churches which do
        not have full communion with the Catholic Church”

        Never before has this idea been proposed by a pope, that non-Catholics may lawfully receive Holy Communion.

    • I have to agree here. Though I am grateful to JPII for the FSSP and to BXVI for Summorum Pontificum, I’ve grown tired of seeing them held up as some kind of collective bulwark against the liturgical devastation their inaction and frequent complicity helped to create. At least Pope Benedict seemed to be trying to come out of the fog of his suit-and-tie days, but Pope John Paul II seemed to content to provide Traditionalists with a ghetto while going along with nearly every liturgical abuse that came down the pike. These two popes are enigmas to me.

      • As an extension of your comment, I don’t understand how the travesty of the so-called Charismatic Movement was allowed, how JPII could be so clueless. It’s the most uncatholic thing of all.

        I also know many modernist Catholics who believe in the prosperity gospel.

      • Eoin,
        I understand what you’re saying here. This article does not hold up the postconciliar popes as sterling models of liturgical observance, but simply notes that they had the wits to see what was going on, even if they did not take enough serious steps to stop it from happening. Certainly Summorum Pontificum was the beginning of a response, the end of which is far from sight and very powerful. Nevertheless, far more could have been done than handwringing. I’ll add this point, though: both JPII and BXVI acted with far greater reverence towards the Blessed Sacrament at Mass than many other clerics do, and the latter in particular reintroduced the practice of kneeling for communion at all the papal Masses. This, in turn, encouraged other clergy to do the same. Alas, teaching by example is not quite enough. There would have to be strong legislation and strong follow-up as well (cf. Pius X).

        • Thank you for your response, Dr. Kwasniewski. If I may push back a bit…? I agree that BXVI did more to return reverence to liturgy, though few followed his lead and he did little to force the issue. As for JPII, however, did he really “see what was going on” as you say? You have written before of the “enforced optimism” of the post-conciliar project, and JPII seems to have been the most embarrassingly blind “enforcer” of it. You know well how often he spoke of abundance even in the midst of obvious devastation. It seems to me that he was blinded by ideology and, as such, was incapable (if not unwilling) of seeing what was going on.

          • I wouldn’t dispute the truth in what you’re saying. I have to wonder if there was ever a struggle in his breast between the deep Polish piety he inherited and the evidence of collapse he must have known (after all, he’s the one who coined the phrase “silent apostasy” about Europe, and said similar things about America). On the other hand, wherever he went there were crowds of thousands or millions who cheered him all the way, so he could have been deceived by his peculiar position into thinking that “the Spirit was moving” and all would be well.

          • Don’t forget that he saw “the light of the year 2000” in the eyes of the youth… Where is that light now?

            And yet he is canonized. Are we to assume the Holy Spirit allowed someone of dubious character to be raised to the altar?

  5. Yes. This is all, most unfortunately, very true and it’s even worse.

    The Body and Blood of Christ is profaned throughout the Church in the West and most priests are persecuted if they try to do anything about it, because it’s not ‘pastoral’. Many Bishops are anti-reverence orientated (and some other orientation as well, but not Ad orientem! Never that! The Narcissist has to have the spotlight…) and their clergy are no better, it’s about putting on a show and a very poor one at that.

    They obliterated the understanding of the Holy Sacrifice from minds and hearts of the people and preach putrid heresy after heresy Sunday after Sunday all focused on the feelings of the people and liberal politics with a particular focus on having the average idiotized pew-sitter think that Father is the greatest thing ever!

    May God save us.

  6. The fact that all clerics (including those who are married) are bound (by both the 1917 and 1983 codes of canon law) to perfect and perpetual continence is a greater secret than the Manhattan Project. The permanent diaconate was revived in the West without the expenditure of even a fiddle-dee-dee over the fact that having non-continent clerics serving at the altar was an unprecedented nuclear blast over the Church’s “Eucharistic Realism” and the nuptial significance of the Eucharistic Sacrifice.

    • Your comments concerning Permanent Deacons are profound. Thank you.

      P.S. There is a cadre of clerics within certain traditional Societies of priests who see no problem with using “Permanent” Deacons for their Solemn High Masses. I wish they’d rethink this.

      • They shouldn’t as the Order is validly conferred and indelible, even if awkwardly treated by most diocesan bishops. A deacon is a deacon. The “permanent” qualifier used by Paul VI is regrettable as the impediment to priesthood would only remain as long as God willed it, after all.

        Perhaps you should familiarize yourself with Trent Session XXIII, Ch XVII which expressly admits married men are suitable for minor orders at the altar and even commands they wear cassock & tonsure in church…. It’s language is inclusive of the deacon, as well.

          • In the Eastern Catholic Churches, the bishop, priest or deacon may distribute Holy Communion, with this exception:

            When I was little, my father’s pastor from upstate PA became blind and lost both his legs from diabetes. He came down to southeastern PA and lived in a nursing home a few miles from us. He knew the entire Liturgy by heart and offered it every day. Because he was blind, the only thing he could not do was distribute Holy Communion. So one of the Sisters (in habit!) would SILENTLY distribute Holy Communion while FATHER said the words. He was a good confessor. You had to kneel on the floor in his room (he was in a wheelchair and wore his epitrakhilion (~stole). At the end, he’d say: “Are you sorry for your sins?” “Yes, Father.” “Do you promise to amend your life?” “Yes, Father.” “For your penance, say….”

            Oh, he was a wonderful priest. How I miss him.

          • He passed away in June 1984.
            If I find his memorial card, I’ll post it. His name was Fr. Nicholas Fisanick (eternal memory!).

          • I never said they were. Had nothing to do with Ministeria Quaedam but the code of canon law. In the 1917 Code, Deacons are extraordinary ministers. In the 1983 Code, they are ordinary ministers.

    • One minor correction…Pope St. JPII abrogated the 1917 Code of Canon Law when he promulgated the 1983 Code. No Catholic is currently bound by the 1917 Code.
      And, again, non-continence in clerics (especially the Eastern Catholic rites) is a discipline. It is not dogma or doctrine, although it is buttressed by theology. However, the Churches of the Eastern rites have always, from the Patristic Era allowed for married deacons and priests. Only never married, celibate priests remain eligible to become bishops in the East.
      Yes, I have read every single document on the Vatican’s website regarding this issue. However, the Catholic Eastern rites will retain their disciplinary practice of married priests- continent or not. Latin rite Catholics will, of course- and understandably- continue to argue the point. However, it is a moot point and a non-starter discussion for the Eastern rites.

  7. Canon Law is not really followed any more, or enforced > “Can. 898 The Christian faithful are to hold the Most Holy Eucharist in highest honor, taking an active part in the celebration of the most august sacrifice, receiving this sacrament most devoutly and frequently, and worshiping it with the highest adoration. In explaining the doctrine about this sacrament, pastors of souls are to teach the faithful diligently about this obligation.”
    As stated, the highest adoration and honor means extraordinary adoration and honor, as in EF, as in Holy Communion on the tongue while kneeling… As in giving God the greatest honor, glory, and adoration we can, with sacrifice, not just a quick and convenient “communal praise” gathering… Thank you for this excellent article!

  8. Whatever “clericalism” may have existed before the Council, the pendulum has swung so far the other way that I would dare say the majority of priests—at least, the overwhelming number of those I’ve encountered in multiple dioceses and states—now exhibit an almost profound embarrassment at the notion that they are ontologically set apart from the rest of the congregation by virtue of their ordination. How else to explain the continued proliferation of “extraordinarily ordinary” ministers; the self deprecating attitude many take toward their vestments (to the point many of them dispose of the chasuble entirely), let alone the collar (replaced in so many cases by polo shirts and jeans); the toleration by pastors who, we are told to believe, are supposed to be our shepherds of the most maudlin and saccharine “music” known to man; et cetera?

    Even the rare handful of “good”, young priests just out of seminary in the average diocesan parish who truly want to return to some semblance of tradition learn quickly not to upset the apple cart, lest they run afoul of their pastors and, all too often, the parish councils, which in turn leads to a quick referral to the diocesan chancery and the threat of retribution should they raise a ruckus.

    I once believed that the New Rite could be saved, if we could just find enough dedicated priests to offer it properly. I no longer do. It’s doomed beyond repair; the only signs of hope I see are among those diocesan priests who also offer the classical rite. Tradition is the only way forward; “conservatism” (aka “searching for what the Council REALLY meant”) is nothing more than an exercise in continuously moving the goalposts, all while failing to realize there is nothing left to conserve after all.

    • Your second paragraph is priceless and succinctly states a most distressing reality: the post-conciliar “conservative” clerical environment has produced a generation of Caspar Milquetoasts. Not a few of the younger clergy “friendly” toward the ancient Mass are so only for the experiential aesthetics. It has nothing to do with theology and least of all to truth. Due to the post-conciliar Church in which they have been raised, they have no lived experience of Tradition and have been taught nothing about it in their seminaries. A biretta and cassock “doth make not” a priest of holy tradition.

      • We have a young priest who did learn the TLM BUT he is trained novus ordo and so gives no teaching sermons as one usually finds at a TLM. We just get the novus ordo rereading of the Gospel with no extrapolation or teaching.

        • If I am remembering this correctly, Maggie, this is one of the reasons why the SSPX cautions people against attending TLMs offered by non-traditional priests; while they may be getting a valid and reverent liturgy, they very likely won’t be getting (unless the priest has been covertly “Tradding”) solid catechesis.

        • This is why I so love my FSSP parish. The priests have a solid seminary education and teach the Faith without apology. At my former NO parish we were (are) subjected to a lot of wishy-washy nonsense.

          • The Truth too must be held on to with the holiness of Jesus’ loving obedience unto death and not unholy disobedience…

  9. There is an obvious difference between an original practice, such as early Christians receiving in the hand, and a later reintroduction of such a practice when it has long since become obsolete.

    Not least because, it should be noted, the actual practice of communion in the hand, to the extent that it existed in some places in the Early Church, was *very* different, and more hedged about with protections, than has been the case in the modern practice. The entire context was very different. And yet even so, the Church made the decision (East and West) before long that communion on the tongue was the much more prudent practice.

    • It’s also worth noting that the very same problems of communion in the hand were encountered by the early Church when it adopted the practice for a short time; a significant decrease in reverence accompanied the practice. At least then they saw what was happened and put a stop to it.

    • The same Author speaks about where communion in the hand was permitted, and it was the dangers in the time of persecution where Christians had gathered for Mass but were under threat of discovery, and haste sometimes demanded handling of the Host.

      • In the early Church, the communicant NEVER received directly in the hand. They used a large cloth called a Dominicanum which was used ONLY for receiving Holy Communion.

  10. “This is the big picture that explains, to my mind, why the liberals or progressives in the Church are totally incapable of seeing why anyone would object to chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia “… excellent point. We are safe for the time being while Martin and Dolan are on vacation.

  11. Is there any good willed Catholic out there who can look in the mirror and still say VII was a work of a Holy Ghost?
    Once we officially choose sides, I hope to God one of them is completely Vatican II-less. Enough of this sugar coating it with hermeneutic of continuity and syllabus of errors. Scrap the dang thing out completely!

  12. The justification to receive the Eucharist in a state of sin is simply a beginning point to more moral deterioration.

    The past several Popes have abetted what looks like doctrinal change. This is especially true when it comes to no salvation outside the Church and the scandalous behavior of John Paul II, or how Paul VI was a “theological light” as Pope Francis said; Paul VI tolerating all sorts of error and the new theology.

    Both John Paul of Unhappy Memory and Paul VI give Francis and the gang a theological example to follow: change morals just like their heroic “saintly” Popes “changed” doctrine.

    • John Paul II’s Mass at the 1993 World Youth Day in Denver revealed his “devotion” to the Eucharist. Rain storms had come in and the wind was very gusty. The Eucharist was being distributed from plastic containers by a small Army of youth (Eucharistic Monsters). After Mass, hosts were littered all over the ground, some lying in mud puddles. There were laity on their hands and knees consuming them. The Pope and his clergy simply walked away.

  13. I believe that the heart of the problem lies not so much in the liturgical form of the desacralized Novus Ordo Mass, although it’s certainly a major contributing factor but rather in the sudden, brutal manner of its introduction and its customized fabrication through which it was manufactured to order. These events cemented the idea in the popular consciousness that Mass and the Eucharist which is integral to it, were ours to manipulate and modify at our pleasure and convenience. The violent rupture, which saw Latin eliminated, altars smashed, churches rearranged and altar rails ripped out, took place over a period of no more than 5 years and subconsciously we came to believe that all of this……the Church, the Mass, the Eucharist………it was ours, all ours! It was a grotesque rebellion and we’ve carried the baggage of this rebellion for 50 years.

    From that point, it was only a small step for us to decide to distribute Communion in any manner we pleased; standing, sitting (but not kneeling, of course…..oh hell no!), in the hand and now, finally, in the pontificate of this horrid man, to whom we please. And why not? After we’ve trashed churches and trashed the Mass, are we suddenly to have qualms about who may receive our Eucharist? Are we going to selectively cling to this isolated thread of Catholic tradition when we’ve driven a bulldozer through the rest? I don’t think so.

    Out with the vertical, in with the horizontal! Out goes the prayer to St. Michael…….”take a holiday, buddy……we don’t need you no more!” In comes the trite, glad-handing “sign of peace” in a show of faux, I don’t know what. The author is correct. The execrable Amoris laetitia is a work 50 years in the making.

    • Don’t mean to move the discussion in another direction, but something you mentioned stood out to me. I have seen several comments on various blogs putting the handshake sign of peace in a negative light. I’ve yet been able to get a straight answer what the controversy is. Would you be a help and explain it please? thnx

      • For me, it’s banal, trite, contrived and a distraction immediately before Communion. It’s fake. I don’t view it in isolation but see it as part of the exaggerated horizontal focus of the Novus Ordo Mass which emphasizes human interaction at the expense of the Divine or vertical dimension. The priest faces us, he chats with us, wishes us “good morning”, maybe tells a joke or two. We greet each other, smile, shake hands. It’s all about us.

        All of this is a subtle and maybe not so subtle desacralization of the Holy Sacrifice. Jesus is now present on the altar and we turn away at the moment of the Sign of Peace and engage in a ritual which is distracting and incongruous at that sacred time. Nothing wrong with shaking hands and greeting people, smiling and telling jokes but as my mother used to say….”there’s a time and a place for everything” and Communion time isn’t the time for this. It’s a time for interior recollection and prayer.

        In summary, I see it as one contributing factor to the loss of the sense of the sacred which prevails in Novus Ordo world. People need and want to find God. They want to experience God, feel God, know God. They can’t do this in some sort of quasi-humanist “happy time”. One doesn’t need to come to Mass for this sort of experience. One can get it over coffee and donuts after Mass or even at a non-religious gathering such as the golf club.

        There’s a certain symbolism here. In the Tridentine Rite, priest and people fall faced God, united as one. Now the priest turns his back on God, we face each other and focus on each other. We need to get over ourselves.

          • There’s more: Traditionally, the peace was shared radiating out from the altar, starting with the priest, who has just confected the Sacrament which is present there on the altar, and deacon, then deacon and subdeacon, the clergy choir, then, sometimes, lay servers and even, where a pax-brede is used, the wider community (although I have never personally seen this last). This ritual emphasises that it is divine peace that is being shared and willed, not the horizontal matiness that Kiwi describes.

          • Exactly. The traditional rite of peace symbolizes that peace comes to us from Christ, from the Bread of Life upon the altar, and radiates outwards to the major ministers, who stand in for the rest of us. In some rites and at some periods of Church history, the sign of peace was then extended to the minor ministers — but always in that hierarchical manner. I read that at a nuptial Mass, the priest gave the ceremonial kiss to the bridegroom, and the bridegroom then gave it to his bride. The new rite of “peace” is one in which everyone simultaneously erupts into hugs, handshakes, shoulder-squeezes, and what not, which has nothing to do with the liturgical symbolism and more to do with Woodstock and the Summer of Love.

          • And I feel that way about the collection plates doing the rounds, it all leads to
            distraction and interrupts recollection of mind and heart in interior solemnity.
            Let them have a donation box placed near the exit.

          • In the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, the clergy give the kiss of peace ***on the right shoulder before the Nicene Creed***. To paraphrase the Gospel: you should be reconciled BEFORE you make your offering. In the NO, it’s AFTER the Consecration. If the Latin Church wants the kiss/sign of peace, then put it BEFORE the Preface.

          • It’s after the Consecration in the Extraordinary Form as well…it’s just only done by those in the sanctuary (i.e. not laymen) rather than everybody

          • We have it BEFORE the Creed, I.e. before the Consecration. Also, I thought the priest was supposed to keep his index fingers and thumbs together from the Consecration to Communion. So if the kiss of peace is done after the Consecration in the TLM, then how do they do it?

          • There’s no handshake. It’s more of an embrace. I’ll pay closer attention next time I go to a High Mass in the Extraordinary Form to see what the priest does with his hands

          • As I said before, in the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, the clergy embrace one another and give each other a kiss on the shoulder. The greeting is the same one used when we have Festal anointing:

            “Christ is among us!”

            Response: “He is and shall be!”

      • It is part of an array of V2 changes that turn the focus of the liturgy away from God and towards man and his various interests. It is part of the distracting of the Mass. It is unnecessary and in our time mostly ineffectual in that rather than leading to any meaningful human bonding (which aim is misplaced in context) it adds to the fakeness, superficiality, and incoherence of the new liturgy.

      • For one thing it is an option. It breaks the prayers of the faithful –those who pray–on the Mystery of the One present on the altar and it turns the Mass into a horizontal, sometimes free for all.

        • “Prayers of the Faithful”… if done reverently it’s fitting, but in so many parishes the prayer intentions sound like petitions for every SJW cause under the sun.

    • Can’t remember where I read that a group of Protestant ministers was brought in to help “reinvent” the Mass. Is there any truth to that?

  14. While in the seminary immediately following Vat II priests would openly admit their loss of faith in the Real Presence. One religious priest after Mass told a friend “Dump this stuff in the toilet” referring to the Precious Blood. Certainly as the author says it began long before. The doubt and abandonment of doctrine accelerated following Vat II was widespread seminary life chaotic. It calmed for awhile. The significant catalyst was the almost universal rejection of Church teaching on contraceptives in Humanae Vitae. Many continued to receive the Eucharist despite the use of contraceptives, which eventually eroded the true meaning of human love of spouse and children pleasure becoming more important. And with that desire for new relationships and widespread divorce, promiscuity. The Holy Eucharist is intimately related to love between Man and Woman and the cherishing of life made in God’s image. When we began to lose that interior sacred sense we entered the path of abandonment of God.

    • “The Holy Eucharist is intimately related to love between Man and Woman and the cherishing of life made in God’s image.”

      Why then should we not suppose that the homosexuals in the Church went after the Eucharist?
      Why then should we not suppose that the homosexual priests, bishops and cardianls are so against Ad Orientum, for they cannot bear to face God at best? Or do they detest him? Which is it, for it must be one or the other?

      You know far more, I understand, but I really think that homosexuality within the priesthood/Vatican may have been a catalyst to go against Humanase Vitae.

      • I think ultimately the issue of homosexuality in the priesthood will have to be dealt with as it will be seen to be the root of all the mess. I’m appalled at what I’ve seen in my diocese and in a habited order with which I’ve dealt recently.

        • On Fr. Martin’s web, he says scrap the ICEL. He now wants a gay translation for Mass.
          “From my friend Dan Horan, OFM: “So what are we to do in the wake of this admittedly poor English translation of the Missal now seven years on? O’Collins and Wilkins suggest dusting off the 1998 ICEL revised translation that the CDW never allowed to see the light of day.”
          I don’t know what cdw is.

            John Zmirak wrote this about Martin :
            Fr. James Martin is Creating Chaos in Catholic Circles

            And now Martin is preening as the victim of an attack on campus free speech. And media are spooning their readers Martin’s latest martyr narrative.
            The Official Seminary of America’s Official Catholic University
            Here’s what happened: A year ago, before Martin had “come out” as a leader of the revolt against the timeless, unalterable Christian teaching on sexual love and chastity, he got an invitation. The group was the Catholic seminary for training priests affiliated with the Catholic University of America (CUA). That university is special even among Catholic institutions. It’s chartered by the pope. Its leaders are appointed by the U.S. Catholic bishops. Its theology and philosophy teachers must take vows to champion Catholic teaching. Once a year, every Catholic parish in the country has a special collection to raise money for CUA.
            Nobody who takes a job there is under any illusions. There isn’t and shouldn’t be the same academic freedom available at secular universities, much less public colleges paid for by tax money. The First Amendment exists to protect the right of schools like Catholic University to be authentically Catholic. If you don’t like it, go enroll or apply to teach someplace else. Maybe some place that doesn’t pass the basket in parishes nationwide in the name of advancing official church teaching.
            Liberal Catholics want it both ways. They want the legal exemptions that come with working at a religious institution. They certainly want alumni and other Catholics to dig deep and donate. But they don’t want to play by the rules the church imposes.
            But liberal Catholics want it both ways. They want the legal exemptions that come with working at a religious institution. They certainly want alumni and other Catholics to dig deep and donate. But they don’t want to play by the rules the Church imposes. Some of them, like Martin, want to rewrite the rules.
            Many faithful Catholics oppose this arrangement. So a few dogged online commentators started a public controversy about the invitation. That was easy since Martin has made the media rounds as the poster boy for the LGBT cause. So the College, overseen by the Sulpician order, changed course. It announced that it was rescinding Martin’s invitation. Rather than stand on principle, though, it implied that it had no problems with Martin’s views. No, it was simply trying to avoid the needless controversy provoked by online conservative activists.
            So Catholic University weighed in, noting it was a shame that public anger deterred the college from having Martin speak. Some conservative Catholic academics also weighed in, comparing the backlash to Martin to violent attacks on free speech by conservatives at public universities like UC Berkeley.
            Not Really a Free Speech Issue
            Now the Washington Post and the New York Times are echoing that narrative. They’re painting as censors the faithful Catholics who complained that Martin was being honored with a featured public lecture. Meanwhile, Martin is waving around his credentials and authority. He’s pointing out that his religious superiors have no problems with his views. Nor apparently does Pope Francis, who still keeps him as an advisor. It’s just those awful “right-wing” Catholics on the Internet, those dangerous bullies!
            Like I said, it’s the 1962 Mets. Except it’s not funny. The official seminary of the official university of the Catholic church was well within its rights to withdraw its platform to Martin, in light of the views he’s espoused. It could have said so. Instead, it said it was giving in to the heckler’s veto.
            Do the leaders of the Theological College really think Martin’s views are authentically Catholic? Then they shouldn’t have disinvited him. Nor should they have blamed their decision on criticism by Catholics.
            What Should Have Happened
            The College should have responded to the outcry of faithful Catholics by listening to them. (Build a bridge!) Then it should have turned Martin’s speech into a debate or a forum. There are plenty of theologians and philosophers at CUA who don’t think gay partners should kiss at Mass. They should have found one of them. Then they would have turned the evening from a lovefest for dissenters into a real academic exchange. No one would have mistaken the event as an endorsement of Martin’s views. If Martin backed out, then we would have seen him as the one who wanted to suppress debate. Who will only speak before friendly audiences that will coo and caw whenever he strokes their distorted worldviews.
            But why blame administrators at a seminary? The Jesuits should order Martin to stop airing his dissenting views. If they won’t, Pope Francis should demand it. Every Jesuit takes a special vow of obedience to the pope. Make them follow it.
            Then maybe faithful Catholics with websites wouldn’t be so angry, dispirited, and disillusioned.

      • I tend to believe you’re right. Homosexual behavior is an abomination because it rejects the order of nature ordained by God, the order of nature reflecting the Eternal Law. That depth of evil within the Church would per force seek to diminish, even ridicule the immensity of Christ’s miracle of love that occurs on the altar. Purity and humility are adverse to the homosexual.

        • It is completely satanic. An act filled with hatred and ugliness for the the beauty of the procreative act
          of love between Man and Woman.
          We cooperate with God in a Soul’s introduction to physical reality for the glory of God and this power
          we have is detestable to Satan and he will and does all he can to destroy this beauty with his many and
          varied suggestions of impurity.
          We (as humanity) echo daily the assent to the whisper of the father of lies at the moment of the FALL with our depravity
          and false autonomy in our lives.

    • Yes absolutely,
      So how can the Church restore her moral credibility, how can the Church encourage her children to go to the Lords Table for The Bread of Life, there is only one way and it applies to all who approach His Merciful heart, you approach Him in humility.

      As any relationship worth having is built on truth, as Truth is the essence of love. The serving of the Truth leads us into humility (St Bernard Humility a virtue by which a man knowing himself as he truly is, abases himself) the
      recognition of our state of being before God

      Please consider continuing in the link below


      kevin your brother
      In Christ

    • I think it was G.K. Chesterton who wrote (and Bishop Sheen quoted him) that a man who says “I don’t believe in the doctrine of transubstantiation.” really means “I don’t believe in the 6th Commandment.” Prophetic imo.

  15. Thank you for this article. Many times several of these points have filtered through my mind. When was the last time anyone heard a priest remind people of these distinctions and not just in passing but as a program of formation? And, it is very true that if everyone goes to communion anyway, what does it matter if a divorced and remarried person goes? Lack of clarity and courage in the pulpit and lack of availability in the confessional, combined with the above mentioned practices have gravely compromised the Body of Christ’s relation to its source of life and unity, and hence there is little life or unity, in the supernatural sense, in the parishes.

    • Interesting that in my FSSP parish, at a funeral, many people will not present themselves for Holy Communion whereas at a N.O. Mass everyone will receive. There is something in the Traditional Mass that stops people from thoughtlessness.

  16. Centuries before taking it on the tongue, people took it in their hands. Revernece comes from the top down, is institutional. Vatican II did that. But taking it in the hands is not a problem, not for people WHO KNOW WHAT IS GIVEN TO THEM.

      • And a priest never dropped the host? Why did priests have an altar boy behind him to get the crumbs?

        Jesus broke bread and gave his disciples his body. And they ate with their hands. It is all about reverence.

        • Altar boy next to him with a paten to catch any fragments or dropped hosts. A host once fell from an elderly gentleman’s tongue and the Priest leapt into action to retrieve it from the altar rail as if the very body of our Lord Jesus Christ had fallen. Hmm, I think he might actually believe in all this Catholic stuff.

          • Yes, and if a priest is staring at you and you drop the host, there could be an altar boy there to do the same thing. The idea that the Middle Ages was the best time for Catholicism always struck me as odd. I’m not talking dogma. I’m not talking reverence. I’m talking about customs.

            In no way do I think we need laity handing out hosts. But taking it in the hand? Come on.

          • Even when Paul VI gave permission for bishops conferences to petition for Communion in the hand, in that same document he pleaded for the retention of the ancient practice. There’s more at stake here than what you infer.

          • Taking Communion by the hand is an even more ancient practice.

            I know what is at stake. I don’t think you do.

          • You keep harping on a theme that is beside the point. The virtue of the traditional liturgy is not that it is older than the new liturgy. Rather the traditional liturgy is more faithful to the truth and it teaches through its practice the true significance of the Mass. The new liturgy does the opposite.

          • Actually, I saw the larger point from the beginning. By the hand communion isn’t a huge deal. Everyone else has been berating me for it. I never said I liked the new liturgy. I hate it. But by the hand communion is just asmreverent as by the mouth. It all depends on how educated the laity are on WHAT THEY ARE RECEIVING.

            This is why “traditional” Catholics bother me. They miss the forest for the trees. And they are so judgmental.

          • Very likely a person who truly understands the Real Presence will ask to receive the Eucharist in the mouth. He will not want to sully it with any dirt that might be on his hands. He will want the Eucharist to go directly and entirely into his body without losing any of it. There are many reasons that a true understanding of the Eucharist would induce a communicant to prefer receiving Communion by the mouth and really none to prefer receiving in the hand.

            More importantly perhaps in the big picture there is no denying that this particular V2 change combined with the others has lead to a loss of faith. If you want to refer to the fruits that is fine. The catechism of the V2 changes, as a matter of practice, is a failure.

            On the other hand, a multitude of saints has walked the path of the traditional liturgy.

          • Early Christians understood the Real Presence. Priests have dropped, mishandled hosts.

            I’m saying this is not why V2 is a failure. It has nothing to do, at any time in history, with truth, with reverence.

            V2 disrespected Jesus with no confession, with lay ministers, with disrespect. Holding the Host in your hands is not disrespect.

          • Notice how you had to turn your sentence. You did not say “Holding the Host in your hands is a sign of great reverence.” (In many cultures it would not be.) Instead you say, “not disrespect.” Because I think you understand that receiving the Holy Eucharist on your knees and directly on your tongue plainly expresses a much greater reverence. And indeed this is borne out in the fact that the practices of the new liturgy have resulted in a crisis in the faith. The traditional liturgy teaches the truth in practice much more effectively than the new liturgy.

          • No, you’re the one twisting. I think by tongue or hand before consumption has nothing to do with reverence. On knees? Yes. By a priest? Yes. After confession? Yes.

            “Traditional” Catholics are some of the most bigoted and ignorant Catholics there are. Quick to judge, intentionally obtuse. And hypocrites.

            It doesn’t make you a better person to conform to traditional customs if you place that above what those customs are supposed to convey. Jesus exposed the problem with this.

            But people never change. I quit! Good luck with your fake piety. I’m out.

          • Setting aside the irony of your second paragraph.

            To your point re hands. And knees. Have you ever seen a new order Mass where people consistently kneel to receive the Eucharist in their hands? I’ve never seen this. Speaking of “hands” is a short-hand for the total disposition and how Communion is received and given in the new liturgy in contrast to the old liturgy.

            Second even if we just focus on “hands” and consider their symbolic expression of reverence, it seems to me that your interpretation is not consistent with the language of the liturgy—even the new liturgy (which must be our main reference for this discussion). It is understood for example that hands can get dirty. Hence the washing of the hands. The priest washes his hands. This washing is not available to the faithful. So here, impossible to see even equal reverence expressed in use of hands compared to receiving directly on tongue.

          • Ah, here we have the whole point of this tedious troll – an emotional rant about how mean “traditionalists” are. And hypocritical, too, so there! Next time, just leave it at “Traddies Suck!” and save us all a lot of time.

          • You’re new to the convo. Traddies are mostly terrible characters.. Traditional Catholicism is wonderful. But receiving by the hand is not sacrilegious, irreverent, etc.

          • “Judgemental” is not a synonym for “disagrees with me.” The arguments you’ve made, such as they are, are utter nonsense. People disagree with you because you’re wrong. That’s okay. It happens to me all the time. I suggest you go back and rethink your position. Maybe you can come up with a more compelling argument, or maybe you’ll have to change your position.

          • My argument is not only valid but completely in line with history and Catholic truth. But thanks, Bob, for your input.

          • Perhaps you are very strong in your faith and you are far more able to see the forest through the trees than me.

            What is the mystery of our faith? IT is NOT, ” Christ has died, Christ has Risen, Christ will come again.”
            The mystery of ‘our’ faith is the Eucharist. It is the supernatural mystery which can so easily
            be Luthernized. My sins, my pride, make it easy for that to happen.

            And so, the Supernatural, becomes realized when the Mass is reverent, when the Old and New Testament are united at the TLM, when the focus for the priest is the altar, the Crucifix, the Liturgy.

            Receiving Communion kneeling, on the tongue, does NOT make me holier. But, I admit, it helps me
            to to realize, to humble myself, knowing there is not a darn thing I can do to ever make up for my sins,
            for He has opened the Gates of Heaven for this pathetic sinner: me.

          • You act as if taking communion in the hand is intrinsically irreverent. And it isn’t. It isn’t a sin. And kneeling is great.

            This binary thinking is what is upsetting. Many of you think of me as some guy receiving the host and playing with it before chewing it with my mouth open and then holding a hippie drum circle after. Rubbish.

            Communion on the tongue is great, and is reverent, but I don’t believe it is any more reverent than me receiving it in my hands. Every part of our body is impure, including my tongue. This is why we pray before mass, why we get general absolution and why we got to confession , and even that isn’t enough.

            When it was offered I got up, at 4am rain, shine, or snow, and went to the Church for Eucharistic Adoration. Me and my dad. That’s it.

            I say this because so many of you judged me for pointing out a fact: receiving communion in the hand isn’t a sin, and isn’t disrespectful.

            How many pedophile priests consecrated the host before they put it on the tongues of the laity during the golden times?

            Martin Luther no doubt did the same thing before he revolted.

            Do you see what I am getting at?

          • A surly and defensive tone is never a sign of being secure in one’s point of view. I will respond with St. Thomas Aquinas’ position. He writes:

            “The dispensing of Christ’s body belongs to the priest for three reasons. First, because . . . he consecrates in the person of Christ . . . Secondly, because the priest is the appointed intermediary between God and the people, hence as it belongs to him to offer the people’s gifts to God, so it belongs to him to deliver the consecrated gifts to the people. Thirdly, because out of reverence toward this sacrament nothing touches it but what is consecrated, hence the corporal and the chalice are consecrated, and likewise the priest’s hands, for touching this sacrament. Hence it is not lawful for anyone else to touch it, except from necessity — for instance, if it were to fall upon the ground, or else in some other case of urgency.

            John Paul II, certainly no hero of mine, even he remarks in “Dominicae Cenae”: “”How eloquent, therefore, even if not of ancient custom, is the rite of the anointing of the hands in our Latin ordination, as though precisely for these hands a special grace and power of the Holy Spirit is necessary. To touch the sacred species, and to distribute them with their own hands, is a privilege of the ordained. . . ”

            The primitive Church matured in the fullness of Her understanding regarding both the Eucharist and the priesthood. Hence She wove a fabric of sacred practices which made this maturation visible. Returning to a practice that preceded this systematic enhanced perception is a classic case of regression; it certainly cannot be called “progress.”

          • Wow, I am very secure in my pov. I am frustrated, yet again, by the modern Pharisee. You don’t care about Jesus, you care about your superior beliefs. And natch you missed my point to spout off.

            I’m out, I’m done. Good luck with your fraudulent piety.

          • I’m sorry you won’t stay and discuss. I usually learn something from even those with whom I virulently disagree.

            Just a little advice: if you really want to display that you “care about Jesus,” calling people names simply because they disagree with you is probably not the best way to go about it.

          • No no, this isn’t a discussion. This is a mob attack. And again, more smugness from you. I do care about Jesus. That’s why I’m not going to participate in this ignorance.

          • G. Channel: you’re posting on a blog where the majority of the posters disagree with you. Is that your definition of a mob attack? If you don’t want feedback, don’t post.

            I apologize if I sounded “smug” to you.

          • I posted on a comment site where discussion is supposed to occur. And actually I believe with most of the blog. I read traditional sites, blogs, and Canon212.

            Your attitude is smug. And disingenuous. Your “apology” is cute.

            Jesus said take this bread, which implies handling. He is above all. Had he wanted it done by mouth he would have instructed his disciples to do so to each other. And nowhere, in any historical record, did they give communion by mouth in the early church.

            It is a product of the Middle Ages, and is a custom. And our current crisis is not because of that. It is because of worldliness and its reaction to it by most people is not a desire for Jesus but a desire for the way things used to be. That is evident.

            The reverence comes first, then the customs. But that has been flipped.

            Anyway, it doesn’t matter. Nothing matters. You’re confusing your smugness and elitism with piety. That is also evident.

            Good luck! Bye now.

          • This is all getting a little silly now, let us all retain our reverence and strive to do so
            regardless of the taxing liturgical weaknesses of the N.O. and allow our example to
            give others witness to Our Lord’s Presence.

          • I have seen people receive Holy Communion by the hand and then rub their hands together to get rid of any crumbs- as you would if you were finishing off a sandwich. One should never, by the way, call Holy Communion ‘it’.

          • I’ve seen priests mishandle the host. Don’t lecture me. Worst thing about “good” “traditional” Catholics.

          • I have noticed your quarrelsome and contrarian attitude and I for one will not give you any more oxygen for your puerile responses.

        • That may not be the case – that the Apostles received the Body of Christ with their hands G Channel! This same author as above, has writtten elsewhere about the custom in the time of Christ, that the human host holding the dinner would individually place a morsel of food in the mouth of each of his guests as a custom. This was a wonderful bit of research that he did and presented to us in these days of loss of reverence. So spread the word! Thanks be to God!

          • Communion in the way of the traditional liturgy makes sense in the perspective of the purpose of the Mass. The practice of the new liturgy does not. Especially today and for modern man. The new liturgy as it is commonly practiced is a key agent in the crisis of the faith.

    • Due to the casualness inherent in the new liturgy, of which communion in the hand is one feature, most Catholics do not know what is given to them. Their practice has taught them something other than the truth. This is a vital problem. The V2 changes work together to devastate the liturgy and obscure its true purpose and meaning. As a matter of practice, they have turned the liturgy into a Protestant service.

      • Most Catholics don’t know what is given to them because of formation, because of priests, and Vatican II. But receiving communion in the hand has been a feature from the time of Jesus.

        • The new liturgy is the main catechism for most Catholics. Yes, it is an absolute failure. In practice it teaches something other that the true significance of the Mass. The casualness of the new liturgy, including the communion in the hand (and the terrible ways that is often implemented) teach the opposite of the Catholic faith. Through the practice of the new liturgy a generation of Catholics has been confused. The best thing the hierarchy could do for our communities is to return to the traditional liturgy. It provides a reliable catechism.

        • “But receiving communion in the hand has been a feature from the time of Jesus.” No. You made that up. Or was that Luther?

          • Seriously, receiving Holy Communion directly into the mouth is an ancient practice. There is some evidence of reception in the hand in the distant past, but I think this was unusual and certainly it died out completely many centuries ago. The recent fashion for receiving Holy Communion in the hand was born in disobedience less than fifty years ago, mirroring the revolt of the early Protestants whose abandonment of the ancient practice was a sign of their rejection of Faith in the Blessed Sacrament.

          • I’m out. I’m not dealing with ignorant and judgmental “traditional” Catholics who pay lip service to Jesus and luxuriate in their own smugness. Bye.

          • Look, all you’ve done on this thread is repeat an opinion without any kind of justification, and done so very rudely, insulting and judging others while complaining about being judged and insulted. I’m sorry for it.

          • Ok Simon, here is what happened: I offered my opinion. Then I was attacked. So I responded in kind. Then you came in swinging on a chandelier and called me akin to Martin Luther. A deeper insult is hard to find. So you joined the mob.

            The Trads are unflinching and rigid in what they think things should be and God Help You if you disagree. I love traditional Catholicism, but most so called trad Catholics seem like miserable ugly creatures waiting to pounce on you.

            Anyway, Simon, you’ve proven part of that group. Maybe today there will be a little hop in your step as you once again vanquish the devil with Truth . Truth being about customs, of course…

            Bye now. Leave me alone.

          • “The Trads are unflinching and rigid in what they think things should be and God Help You if you disagree. I love traditional Catholicism, but most so called trad Catholics seem like miserable ugly creatures waiting to pounce on you.”

            That’s no my experience at all, neither in real life nor on this forum. My own point was, fairly obviously, I thought, two-fold: that Communion in the hand is a Protestant innovation deliberately chosen to be a denial of the Real Presence, and that your assertion of continuity of this practice was objectively false.

          • People that hang out with people just like them can’t see anything wrong about them.

            Communion in the hand is not a prot invention. That is not supported by history, by facts, and by scripture. Jesus’ own words say differently.

            Communion in the hand is not why Francis is destroying the Church.

            I am tired of your inability to see things as they are. You aren’t about Truth, you’re about “the way things used to be”. That is the problem with traddies.

            Stop talking to me. Thanks.

          • I’m afraid you are wrong. And you might think of my replies not so much as replies to you personally, but as corrections of what you say, for the benefit of others if not for you, although I sincerely do hope that you will reconsider and suggest some further reading, below. On the other hand, if you don’t want me to respond you know what to do.

            All you have done, so far as I can tell, is make an assertion, which I say to be incorrect and will cite sources supporting that opinion, and then respond with insults when challenged. I haven’t seen any attempt to justify your assertions. I sincerely recommend a few resources: The first, most easily available, online, is this position paper from the Una Voce (what “traddies” really think): The second is one of the references of the first, Bishop Schneider’s short book, “Dominus Est”. They describe two things of great pertinence: a manner of reception of Holy Communion from the early days which bears no resemblance to what we see in most modern Masses, and the strict prohibition of Communion in the hand, in east and west, for well over a thousand years.

            On the other hand, the common modern manner of reception of Holy Communion grew out of disobedience very recently, as described in Bishop Laise’s short book, “Communion in the Hand, Documents and History”. There is precedent for this however: the Protestants. I admit, actually, that I’m not sure about Luther and Lutherans; there are so few in England and, as the arch-heresiarch of the Protestant revolt, Luther is just a trope for a Protestant revolutionary, but early Protestants really did change the manner of reception of Holy Communion precisely to show that they did not believe; in England this novelty was introduced in about 1550.

          • Please cease from insulting everyone who disagrees with you, and then condemning everyone who disagrees with you while claiming to be condemned and insulted by them. It’s wearisome at best.

            And stop telling people to stop talking to you. This is a discussion board and you posted on it, you should expect people to respond. If you don’t want to see their responses then block them.

          • I expect reasonable people and an openness to consideration. I am merely human. And so are you. But thanks.

          • To your first point, all of the people who responded to you could make the same claim, which wouldn’t do any good for the bolstering their argument, as it doesn’t for yours.

            And what is the point of telling me that I am merely human? Somehow I was unaware of that? This is simply being combative which doesn’t further any good discussion or the validity of an argument.

          • I made my argument already, many times. And what I got back was that basically I was Martin Luther.

            That isn’t being combative, that’s just the truth. I also clearly explained my position again to someone in a long post probably no one will read.

            Bye now.

          • You didn’t answer my questions.

            Your ‘But thanks’ and ‘Bye now’ appear to be nothing more than snarky dismissiveness.

          • ???

            I don’t like talking to you. That’s why I said “bye”. However, let us reset. You want to engage. Ok. As to the issues:

            1)Is receiving communion by hand a sin? Why?
            2) Is it disrespectful? How?
            3)Is it a Protestant invention? Explain.

            That’s it. Answer this civilly, I will answer in kind.

            Thanks. Bye.

          • I asked you a couple of questions first. And you have not answered them.
            And I also told you to stop dismissing people, which I have the responsibility to do given my position. And then you did it to me, more than once.
            And I never said anything to you about your position on Holy Communion did I?
            I truly wish you well, but you have simply entrenched yourself and refuse to conduct yourself in charity toward others.
            1) Not necessarily but it certainly can be. Because of many reasons, mostly profanation.
            2) Not necessarily but it certainly can and is on a regular basis. Because many reasons, mostly profanation.
            3) No. Because it’s not. In fact protestants who remain closer to the actual reformation in their theology and practice tend to receive kneeling and on the tongue. Because that’s what was happening at the time of the reformation and had been for a 1000 years or more throughout Church East and West.

          • Fr, please reconsider the banning of the above subject. I recently was banned from Lifesite news, a site I have made comments on for years, simply because I held a different opinion regarding the election of Roy Brown. Honestly, being banned made me very angry. I have had numerous battles with the heretics on the National Catholic Reporter site, which at times got somewhat heated, but I was never banned. Just food for thought.

          • Major snowflake alert. We cannot take you seriously much as we would like to because you have been told where your arguments are mistaken (according to history, tradition, Church teaching, common practice etc.) yet you persist in pushing them down our throats. We disagree with you because you are WRONG. Can you continue to post about something else where we might get something from your thoughts?

          • Your’re moniker has a picture of a hollywood actor with the words “I Quit”. He looks quite smug
            and bedeviled with luxury. Oh, the irony……given your post, that’s funny.

          • My avitar is a joke. It’s from a movie. That’s another thing: traddies have no sense of humor.

            I am right about communion, and proof is the hurricane of hate and NO FACTS coming from people. I love traditional Catholicism, but most traditionalists are elitists who want to participate in theater, not actually worship.

          • I have a large sense of humor Gorilla, but your sweeping statement on “traditionalists” is unfair
            and wholly wrong in my view. Let’s keep our peace and retain our charity, do we not all wish to
            please Our Lord?

          • My name isn’t Gorilla. Oh ok, retain our charity? Start from the beginning of this thread. I don’t know if some trads want to please God. Some get caught up in the movement, and seem to enjoy putting people in their place.

          • You like many of the faithful are living in an unprecedented time of great apostasy which has not
            yet reached it’s peak. We are all weak and fail in charity and sensitivity to others on a regular basis
            but patience and humility are key, without which we all fall.

          • During the very early Church, the practice of receiving in the hand was practiced. However, you correctly say that the practice soon went by the wayside for all the right reasons. Modernists often use the Patristic Era to justify the use of Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist, among other illicit liturgical practices.

        • No. You are mistaken. The Catholic Church did away with Communion in the hand centuries ago, for good reason. Jumping back 1,500 years to resurrect a custom that Holy Mother Church deemed inappropriate is just dumb. I think this is called Archeologicalism.

  17. The first concrete step was not Communion in the hand, and the second step was not EMHCs. The first step was the election of the devious, two-faced socialist sympathizer Roncalli. The second step was to call a Council, for which Roncalli immediately began colluding behind the scenes with the embedded enemies of the Church (the “Communist Cardinals” – cf. Bella Dodd) to overthrow the careful and orthodox preparatory schema of Vatican II. The third step was the election of the modernist Montini, ensuring that the Council continued. The fourth step in desacralization was the so-called promulgation of the Novus Ordo Missae, which then paved the way for the two steps proposed by this author.

    One could go even further back, such as to the inexplicable promotion of Bugnini by Pius XII, but you’ve got to start somewhere… other words, Communion in the hand and EMHCs were effects of previous steps, not primary causes – thus they were the fine print of implementation of the agenda of the revolution. In fact, I think of them as more of an insurance policy, just in case the Novus Ordo failed to demolish the faith fast enough.

    • It started well before that. Before St. Pius X, the average layman received Holy Communion 4 or 5 times a year. They consulted with their spiritual director and underwent a mini-Lent. St. Louis attended Mass three times a day yet only received 6 times a year! How could anyone receiving weekly, much less daily maintain the same amount of reverence as those for whom it was a rare and especially significant event?

  18. My Dad is a Eucharistic Minister of communion and we recently discussed our different opinions on the subject. I pointed out that when we receive Jesus, His body and blood in Holy Communion we should take all measures possible to receive Him worthily.

    Now, during the sign of peace let’s say you shake hands with someone who used the toilet before Mass but did not wash his hands. Now your hand is contaminated with germs. Then you receive Jesus in this same germs infested hand.

    Would this not be horrible? Is it not crucifying our Lord again? My Dad was silent and did not have a response.

    • Valid argument you gave your dad. Yet another aspect of ‘receiving in the hand’ is the chance for many Eucharistic ‘crumbs’ to be lost in the host in all the ‘transfer’ of Our Lord’s body, blood, soul and divinity. If any of you are old enough to remember, (which I am:) when we used to receive as kids, we knelt at the Altar Rail and there was ALWAYS a Patton held underneath our chins as not to chance any particles being ‘lost on the ground’. And now, we end up WALKING ON HIM. If people really believed that they were going to receive the very body, blood, soul and divinity of Our Lord Jesus, they would be processing up to the Altar ON THEIR KNEES!! Or at least they should be! I heard it said at one time that Mother Teresa and her nuns would actually bow their heads to the ground during the consecration. She would be appalled to witness how people in the West receive Our Lord, as she should be! It is APPALLING!!

    • I think you mean to say that your Dad is an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion (EMHC). It might seem like a minor nit, but I believe it is important for all to know that EMHCs are NOT Eucharistic Ministers. Deacons, priests, and bishops are Ordinary Ministers of Holy Communion.

      If you want to refer to anyone as an Eucharistic Minister, it ought to be towards a priest, not a lay person.

    • How about the inevitable fact that without the paten–even when receiving on the tongue–bits of the host are falling to the floor, being walked on by us, vacuumed, thrown in the garbage and deposited at the landfill. The Lord is literally being trashed.

  19. Excellent but devastating article. God cannot be pleased by what His ministers wrought at Vatican II, which (intentionally) set the stage for the Protestantization of the Catholic Church. This has now largely been accomplished. Until the catastrophe of Vatican II is admitted the situation will not get better. Now, the Catholic Church is devided into two Churches: one the Novus Ordo Protestant

    Church (95%) and the Traditional Orthodox Catholic Church (5%). In other words, we are now in de facto schism. When Christ wondered if He would find any faith on earth when He returned He must of had our present day in mind.

    • Here’s a good place to start: anathematize Teilhard de Chardin and repress the writings or teachings of any who espoused his thinking or espouse the thinking of those who espouse his thinking. This includes de Lubac, Pope Benedict XVI, St. JPII, Congar, et. al.

  20. “this modernist reintroduction of an ancient practice that had long since been discontinued by the Church in her pastoral wisdom”

    I have not studied the Church’s ancient practices myself but I have been told that the ancient form of communion-in-the-hand, often used to justify the present, actually differed markedly.

    I was informed that the ancient practice had people holding their hands out flat, upon which a cloth would be placed so there was no direct touching of the Eucharist. Then, once the Host had been placed on the cloth, the person would bend forward and lift the Host with their mouth, rather than “feed themselves” by hand, as if eating a potato chip.

    If this is correct (and I believe it is) then the ancient practice was more akin to a persons covered hands being used a kind of communion plate, rather than being similar to today’s banal protestant-inspired practice.

    After all, the Church would have been in difficulty long ago, if the low standards of today had been prevalent in its infancy.

    As well as dissenting prelates, we have weak Popes to thank for the rock bottom standards of today. The practice was never “allowed” by any authority, indeed Pope John Paul II frequently called for it to be stopped and was widely ignored.

    More and more “know it all” prelates allowed it anyway, eager to copy their Protestant brethern – who started taking communion in the hand (standing) to demonstrate their lack of belief in the real presence. Copying the Protestants has, of course, been the strategy of a large part of the Church since Vatican II (look at the liturgy for another example).

    Then, the Church authorities – sleeping on the job as usual, a hallmark of the post-conciliar era – rushed out various permissive indults retrospectively to paper over the cracks and maintain the illusion of unity and obedience in the Church.

    Papering over cracks and “keeping up appearances” – while things get worse and worse – has been another hallmark of the post-conciliar era, especially during the time of the vastly over-rated, celebrity-Pope John Paul II.

    Now, today, Francis is leading the modernist charge personally and doesn’t even care to keep up appearances.

  21. I often think of the Cardinal Ottiavianni Intervention regarding the newly created Novus Ordo Mass. Archbishop Lefebvre of the SSPX also signed on to the intervention. Just like the current Dubia, it fell into the ash bin of Church history without Paul VI or any other pope save Benedict doing something about it. However, I strongly feel that Benedict did not go far enough. He should have completely abrogated the Novus Ordo, and reinstituted the TLM for the entire Latin rite in the West. And, what of all the post-Conciliar popes who just let everything go to Hell in a hand basket?

  22. I think it was when they turned the altar around.
    Made everything facing the people.
    All the rest – communion standing, in the hand, everyone in the sanctuary and handling Holy Communion and the sacred vessels, women, men, girls reaching into the tabernacle like it was a refrigerator, if the tabernacle is in the room at all – all of this flows easily when the altar is turned around and made into a table. For a meal.
    That language “table” and “meal” is used.
    Can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard those terms used in the sanctuary.

    It’s when they turned the altar around. That one visual was not lost on us in the pews. We got it. Loud and clear.

  23. “A Little Bread and Wine Does No Harm…”


    To the Nuclear
    Plant I went
    With wafered host
    I was hell-bent.

    Exposed the wafered un-
    Consecrated host
    To radiation
    Now, nuked toast.

    Offered heretic
    “Taste and see.”
    “Oh no!” He cried
    “That’s not for me!”

    “But look, ” I said,
    “Nothing’s changed…
    A still white wafered
    Host arranged.”

    “Though looks the same,
    Could do much harm!”
    The heretic knew
    Exclaimed alarm.

    As Catholics know
    A spiritual radiation
    Daily at Mass

  24. This is the most coherent and understandable article on the subject I have read….the progressive “pastoral” response would be “No, no ,no, we must never admonish the sinner or explain the teachings of the faith. On the contrary, we have to make them feel comfortable, welcome and show that were happy they’re there. The Holy Spirit will do the rest. Besides, God is way bigger than all this alleged sacrilege. And even if he is present in the Eucharist, He is big enough not be upset if His precious Body and Blood gets trampled on when particles hit the floor.”

      • Hoorah!

        Last summer I attended my Goddaughter’s wedding at a tony Princeton, NJ parish. The deacon made it very clear that the pastor’s policy was never to deny Communion to anyone. Before the Mass, I privately approached him in the sacristy, informing him that many in attendance were not practicing Catholics. I asked him to make an announcement that non-Catholics and Catholics not in a state of grace should refrain from receiving Communion. He refused to make the announcement. What was even worse, however, was the response of a parish priest who happened to overhear our conversation. He said, “Well, we believe that if Jesus can get Himself into that little piece of bread, He can get Himself out.” Judas Priest!

  25. Are you saying that the Church itself has apostatized and that the Novus Ordo Mass is, shall we say, Massless? That those Catholics who faithfully attend Novus Ordo Masses, conscientious of being in a state of grace to receive the Most Blessed Sacrament, are deceived by the Church? That all we receive is bread and wine and not the Body and Blood of Christ? Perhaps the ornament and the majesty has been stripped away. I don’t argue that. But the power of God remains. What is truly transcendental, the power of Sacred Scripture to change hearts and the Real Presence of the Soul and Divinity of Christ in the Body and Blood, remains.

      • Don’t you think that we have a responsibility to seek out the liturgy that most worthily expresses the meaning and significance of the Mass? Of course we do. If one believes in the Real Presence, mediocrity in worship is not an option. It is not compatible with that love.

        • I completely agree with you and wish we had the Latin Mass as the only Mass. For almost 50 years we have had this Novus Ordo Mass which is mediocre in worship to the Latin Mass. However, my point is that no matter how deficient the Novus Ordo is compared to the Latin Mass Christ is present in the Novus Ordo Mass. Christ has not abandoned us. Catholics are presently stuck with the Novus Ordo because the Novus Ordo is offered most everywhere while the Latin Mass is offered in limited locations. I believe that one day the Novus Ordo will cease to exist. I hope this is a result of leadership from our Shepherds. Unfortunately I believe it will come only after the world is severely chastised by Heaven.

          • If you are not willing to travel to the Latin Mass now what will you do when the NO churches in your state are gone? Go NOW!

          • “no matter how deficient the Novus Ordo is” It is a tragic question but this cannot be right. If you do some searches on the web I think you will find various examples of new liturgies that will make you wonder if they are not profanations, if not desecration.

            It is time, for all of our communities, to return to a faithful practice that is rightly ordered. I agree with the poster above who observed that at this point the traditional liturgy is the right way forward. We all have a role to play in this.

    • Millions of Catholics have abandoned the faith (and continue to do so). Of those who remain, many do not believe in the Real Presence. The liturgy has become effectively some kind of a Protestant social glue (that doesn’t work well even for that). The priesthood is in crisis because the main purpose of the priest has been destroyed. These fruits flow directly from the (unnecessary) Vatican 2 changes to the liturgy and the practice of the new liturgy. The teaching inherent in the practice of the new liturgy has been harmful to the faith. The more you look into it, the more you realize that to find a coherent liturgy directed to God and faithful to the purpose of the Mass, you have to go back to the traditional liturgy.

      • Do you think it is simply the changes to the liturgy that caused these difficulties within the Church? Or do you think, perhaps, that some of our troubles might stem from an aggressively secular, materialistic, hedonistic, and pagan worldview being promulgated by the world’s media outlets, politicians, educational institutions, businesses, and non-profit sector? When Poland was sacked by the Nazis and the Communists during WWII, did all of the blame fall on the Poles for not being prepared to defend itself against two of the most aggressive militaries in human history? Or did some of the blame fall on the invading armies? Remember, our battle is against the world, the flesh, and the devil, not against the Church.

        • I think that many when confronted by this pagan worldview turning to their Church saw their Church falling in line with that same worldview and it caused them to throw up their hands and say OK, I guess if we can’t beat em we’re joining them. It’s a lot easier.

          • I think there’s some of that. But how can one hour at church and one hour in Sunday school per week compete with a 30-40 hours of TV per week. Have you heard of the vision the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton had of the black box that would spew demons into our homes? Modern communications technology has given the world a foothold in our lives that no one could have possibly imagined 200 years ago. Nobody was prepared for it. The enemies of the Church (the powers, principalities, authorities of wickedness in high places) have used it to tremendous effect.

          • More reasons to adhere to the traditional liturgy. Certainly not to make the liturgy more like what people consume on tv.

        • There are many compelling reasons to see that the Vatican 2 changes are largely and directly responsible for the devastation. For example in the US prior to the V2 changes the Church was actually thriving and growing. The changes were then brutally imposed and we have seen a dramatic decline. Keep in mind that one of the reasons given for the changes was that they would lead to an even greater increase in the Church. But the opposite has been true. Second, the devastation has been most severe in the national Churches that were most aggressive in promoting the spirit of Vatican 2. The Netherlands, for example, 50 years on are effectively liquidating their churches for lack of attendance. Selling them into all sorts of profane uses. The Netherlands Church was one of the intellectual spearheads of the Vatican 2 reforms.

          In practice what we see is that through Vatican 2 the new order Church became worldly. Instead of providing a bulwark against the onslaught of materialism that you reference, the Church caved and became like the world in a weak attempt to please the worldly modern spirit. It was the accomplishment of the Protestant revolution within the Church. Surrender to the modern worldly spirit. It has been catastrophic for the Church and for the world. The exaltation of society ordered towards human interests rather than towards God. Even in the Mass, the one place that should always be a reminder to mankind of the right ordering of society. Even there, we have turned around on ourselves. So yes, I think the V2 changes in practice are critically responsible.

          • You’ve broadened the question from a focus on the liturgy to the impact of Vatican 2. I agree that the so called “Spirit of Vatican II” seems to have caused a number of enormous problems, extending far beyond our liturgical practice. It did not, however, rob the Church of the Eucharist. Christ has not abandoned His flock.
            I like the image of a bulwark failing that you used. As a spirit of modernism invaded the Church, our defenses against the increased onslaught of the forces of Darkness in the culture were tremendously weakened. It reminds me of the story of Nehemiah. We’re in a position where the walls have been torn down and we’re encircled by enemies who seek to prevent us from rebuilding the walls. So we need to rebuild the walls afforded by correct doctrine and liturgical practice, while being mindful of the fact that we are not going to do so unopposed. Christ’s promise that the gates of Hell would not prevail against the Church still holds. He also said, “As they persecute me, so they will persecute you.” Put your sword on your hip and start rebuilding.

  26. further evils that also flow from new mass-

    ‘announcements’ and parish notices read out in the post communion period, an incredible, incredible evil that directly attacks belief in real presence

    priest shaking hands at the door after Holy Mass rather than properly removing sacred vestments and making a serious thanksgiving

    A priest may supposedly be orthodox, holy, sound or whatever but if he is doing these two then he is neither, he doesn’t really believe in the real presence or at best sees no inbuilt contradiction between what he professes with his lips and his evil evil practices which say sonething to the contrary.

    My brother priests, resist these evils, show your faith by your works.

    • I would add the most important thing. Priests should *refuse* to give Holy Communion in the hand because of the guaranteed sacrilege to Jesus, in the form of Particles, falling on the floor and being trampled on, or thrown in the wash when the clothes are laundered and such. No one can order you to do anything which, with moral certainty, results in the mortal sin of sacrilege against the Most Holy Eucharist.

      What is interesting about the “permission” from the Church is that the bishop is allowed formally to approve of sacrilege. What a disaster. It was all started because of disobedient bishops.

      Dear priests, imagine your particular judgment when you stand in front Jesus and He asks you about the sacrilege that you allowed? How much Purgatory you will have!

    • To be fair, I find announcements before the homily in the middle of Mass just as annoying. So is it REALLY “evil” to do the announcements at the end of Mass? Really?

      • I agree. Our FSSP pastor does this – he actually reads from the bulletin which is available to all…but he knows people don’t pay attention, and when there are dates and times involved he feels he must make these announcements. He said one Christmas “don’t call me up and ask me what time Midnight Mass is! It’s at MIDNIGHT!!”

      • Father wrote “in the post communion period”. I think he has a good point, although I don’t think I’ve encountered that.

      • yes, because the sermon is a break in the liturgy. Furthermore Jesus is not physically inside of you at that point, that time is for prayer, adoration, thanksgiving. But I agree, announcements should be minimal even before the sermon.

      • If our priest doesn’t announce that a holy day is coming up during the homily on Saturday evening and Sunday morning, people won’t show up for the holy days (never mind the fact that they’re printed in the bulletin).

    • While we are on the subject the practice and time of the money collection is to me very distracting.
      There should be a donation box for people to give alms just before they leave the Church with even a
      reminder by the presiding Priest before the final blessing.

  27. Sad, terribly sad, but oh so true. Just some anecdotal information to underscore this topic: When I reverted to Catholicism years ago, I jumped into the service arena and signed up to be an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist. I was one of the those people who storm the altar after “Lamb of God,” used the hand-sanitizer and waited as the priest assigned each one the appropriate cup. I never liked it and always felt terribly uncomfortable and, now as I look back on it, profane. I dressed as appropriately as a layperson can and behaved with utmost respect and reverence, yet it just never felt right. I later removed myself from the role, only bringing Holy Communion to the homebound. Yet, even that didn’t feel right because, frankly many did not see me the Presence of Christ, but that a nice lady who visited them and oh, by the way, brought Communion. My point being that since I am a lay person, I do NOT have the authority of the priest and this impacted the way the people viewed the Eucharist that I brought to them. One woman even asked me if I could hear her confession! I no longer bring Eucharist to the homebound because I see how my actions, albeit well-intentioned, were not in keeping with true reverence and love of the Eucharist. My desire to serve God was not supported by sufficient knowledge and understanding of the incredible mystery and majesty of the Eucharist and the priesthood. Thanks be to God, He has given me an increased sense of awe of His Real Presence. Sadly, we are seeing throughout the Church a homey familiarity with God which, as this article points out, has been facilitated by the changes to the Mass and the role of the laity, moving from the worship of the Divine to a more social event, focusing primarily each other instead of Him.

    • I am a convert to the Faith, having been confirmed in 2012. I wanted to get involved, and volunteered to be a Lector. I practiced the readings carefully before each Mass I was scheduled for. Then I was asked if I would be an EMHC. I said – “sure.” Thanks be to God, when I was finally contacted, it was to be a Sacristan, not an EMHC. I was spared from handling the Sacred Species. After a year or so of Sacristan duty, I was informed by an FSSP priest that laymen should not handle the sacred vessels. So I went to the base uniform shop and bought a set of white gloves. I was the only Sacristan in my (reverent) Novus Ordo parish who wore them. Now I am in an FSSP parish full time, and I gave my gloves to our pastors for the altar boys to use. I would have always felt bad had I participated in distributing Holy Communion, but was spared.

      • You wrote, “I was informed by an FSSP priest that laymen should not handle the sacred vessels.” But before the Council, I don’t remember ever seeing altar boys wearing gloves. Although doing so would send a very clear message.

        • “before the Council, I don’t remember ever seeing altar boys wearing gloves” Did you see altar boys handling the sacred vessels? I can’t remember ever having done so?

          • Honestly, before the Council most people weren’t really paying attention. The role of the laity was to obey without question. But you’re reminding me that everything was already placed on the altar in the proper position by the time Mass started. But then, who set up the altar?

    • When I was in my senior year in college, some of my friends thought I should be a Eucharistic Minister (EM). I was reluctant because 1) as a Ukrainian Greek Catholic, laymen don’t touch the Sacred Species and 2) I’d read Memoriale Domini by Pope Paul VI (it was published in the Fatima Crusader). However, being a good guinea pig, I gave in, went through training and became an EM.

      I was an EM for about a month. My last time as an EM was Oct. 10, 1993. For 12 years and 5 days I went through the most horrific temptations against the Real Presence of Our Lord in the Most Holy Eucharist. All the priests I went to for confession told me that Our Lord meant what He said in John 6. I felt like a liar at the prayer before Holy Communion: “O Lord, I believe and profess…” Very rarely did I go to Holy Communion except on the big holy days.

      On Oct. 15, 2005 (the feast of St. Teresa of Avila on the Latin calendar), God delivered me. I can’t post how it happened (it didn’t happen in church though). What I can say is this: I experienced His Power and His Mercy. I’m starting to cry just thinking about it.

      If anyone reading this is a Eucharistic Minister, I beg you in the Name of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Who Is really, truly and substantially present in the Most Holy Eucharist and in the name of Our Lady of Sorrows, cease being a Eucharistic Minister! This is “A Privilege of the Ordained” (the title of a booklet by +Michael Davies on EMs which he based on an encyclical by PJPII). I don’t want anyone going through the same agony that I endured.

      • If you don’t mind my saying so, I think Our Lord permitted you this suffering because here you’ve given witness to everyone who reads what was obviously painful to write, to the anguish you suffered as a consequence of Liturgical abuse. I hope you can see now what depth of faith you possess. It shines through what you’ve written; you’ve been tested, and held fast. A beautiful testimony. St. Teresa seems to be especially powerful on behalf of women striving for union with Jesus. St. Edith Stein would agree. Thank you.

        • You’re welcome. If it helps someone give up being an EM, it’s worth it.

          The late John Vennari once had a tape (later CD) called “The Truth About Communion in the Hand”. Many EMs gave it up after hearing his talk. Oltyn Library Services used to have it but I don’t know if they still do.

  28. Oh, the ‘celebration’ where the ‘celebrant’ puts in his own words and inflections and where the gathering of the people, who God loves them just the way they are and who do not need penance because they are a ‘resurrection’ people, come to receive the white wafer before they sing the song as Fr. Z. says….

  29. As sympathetic as I am to the article, a “50 years” narrative doesn’t stand up to the historical facts. Jesuit “pastoral accommodation”, in the form of granting absolution to unrepentant manifest grave sinners and “admitting” them (past the bouncers and turnstiles I guess) to Holy Communion, has been the official Catholic norm since the 1830’s.

    I think most trads have the sequence backward. It wasn’t profanation of the liturgy which led to disrespect of the sacraments (and especially of the Eucharist). It was disrespect of the sacraments which led to profanation of the liturgy, and the main events — the formal adoption of Jesuit accommodation as the Magisterially sanctioned “pastoral” practice of the Church — took place more than a century before Vatican II.

  30. I can’t in good conscience say that “they” “don’t believe in the Real Presence” ..but rather looking at what ACTUALLY HAPPENED culturally you can get a clear idea of their intent.

    The stripped down Novus Ordo was designed right or wrongly to ‘mimic’ the ‘original’ Mass as described by St. Justin Martyr.

    The sixties and seventies were a time of ‘back to basics’ of minimalism..hippie earthy stuff. Sometimes the most simple answer is the correct one.

    I think that LED to what the article speaks of in terms of a evolving dis-belief or at least an authentic awe and reverence for the Real Presence.

    Whether anyone likes it or not, there are many Novus Ordo attending Catholics who only know standing and receiving in the hand and would die for our Lord in the Eucharist.

    My family and I attend the Novus Ordo (only for a particular trad priest), the TLM, and the Ad Orientum Ordinariate Mass. I lament the type-casting of sincere and devout fellow Catholics who attend the Novus Ordo Mass because they’re simply obeying Holy Mother Church, and in most cases, have no other option.

    • I blame the popes and the priests. Sincere and devout Catholics didn’t go up for Holy Communion and refuse to kneel, nor did they grab the Holy Eucharist from the priest. They certainly didn’t grab the chalice from the priest’s hands and start their own Communion line. Popes allowed these changes and priests made these changes and sincere and devout Catholics just go to Church and they get involved in these ministries because they think it’s good, as it is from the Church.

    • I am NO and though I don’t kneel, I do now receive on the tongue after reading a beautiful meditation by St. Francis during Eucharistic Adoration. And I often do not present myself for communion….and am immediately seized upon by concerned friends wondering if I’ve lost my faith or by my mother–last time we spoke–who accuses me of being a nut.

      • Although outward signs are very important, one’s “interior kneeling” is whats most important
        where the N.O. is concerned, where the Latin Mass is concerned.

        • What the new order neglected in this regard is the teaching that is inherent in practice. When we kneel physically, we teach ourselves also interiorly. And we teach others. In particular children observing. As a matter of practice, traipsing casually around the Altar and treating the Sanctuary as sacred—as expressed in a reverent practice—these teach two different faiths to every observer including children.

          It is not just a matter of exterior practice. It is a matter of teaching. Our practice, our example, is teaching.

          And I agree with you re collection. A distraction. Have the collection available at the exits for people to make contributions as they leave Mass. Plus make it easier for people to make contributions online. The collection is a distraction that we should be able to eliminate even more easily today.

    • Bugnini was a freemason, his NO Mass doesn’t have anything to do with returning to the basics. An ecumenical liturgy that would no longer offend Protestants was Bugnini’s intention from the get-go as he declared in 1965: We must strip from our Catholic prayers and from the Catholic liturgy everything which can be the shadow of a stumbling block for our separated brethren that is for the Protestants. The intention of Pope Paul VI with regard to what is commonly called the Mass, was to reform the Catholic Liturgy in such a way that it should almost coincide with the Protestant liturgy. There was with Pope Paul VI an ecumenical intention to remove, or, at least to correct, or, at least to relax, what was too Catholic in the traditional sense in the Mass, and to get the Catholic Mass closer to the Calvinist mass.

        • Yea, its unbelievable but it’s the Modernists way of stating we ain’t going back to Tradition. Vatican II and the nuChurch are here to stay.

        • The promulgation for the current occupant of the Chair is already prepared. If he didn’t write it himself he got Tucho to do it.
          Get ready.
          They’re all saints, don’t ya know.

      • I blame two world wars, colonialism, imperialism, fascism, modernism, science, feminism, the sexual revolution, communism, totalitarianism, narcissism, and clericalism for Vatican II, more than I do on some Freemasonry plot. I don’t discount said plot..but you have to look at the baggage those bishops brought into that council.

          • Because Satan and our own sinful pride as fallen people are good enough boogeymen, without having to add in a global plot spanning centuries by men wearing aprons with an eyeball on it. Freemasonry is just the excuse, man provides the will.

          • Well, that’s very nice to say but my Church and my culture has gone to hell in a handcart because of actual men implementing a very organized plan to overthrow the social reign of Christ the King. It’s criminal and it’s insane to just chalk it up to boys being boys. Why do you think we have RICO laws? Random people and their concupiscience is not the same as organized crime and law enforcement that treats it as such will fail; just as we have failed in our Christian duty, the inmates are now running the asylum.

          • Melanie..what’s done is done. We have bigger fish to fry right now and living in the past and pointing fingers at dead people won’t change anything.

          • They are not dead and I’d love to see them served justice for their crimes. What is being accomplished right now in our Church is criminal but it would probably take bloody war to combat it, so instead we’ll probably go into the catacombs or be without the Sacraments, God help us.

    • A priest told me that after the age of sixteen each and every Catholic is responsible for their own Faith. At that age they hear the difference in what’s taught by modernists and traditional Catholics – it’s all over the place and it’s up to them to find out what is right and to act accordingly. There are gifts of The Holy Ghost given at Baptism, and re-confirmed at Confirmation that make this possible for a youth of good will. No letting anyone off the hook. We are programmed to search for the Truth. We are given the graces to see through the lies and obfuscations taught these days.

      Is there a Catholic alive today who does not know what mortal sin is in principle? Is there a Catholic alive today who does not know what Confession is for? Lukewarmness no matter what age the youth is a very serious business.

  31. I will hereafter refer to all supporters and apologists of Amoris Laetitia as Amorites, a name that seems very fitting.

    I was homeschooled until high school. The curriculum we used taught religion via the Baltimore Catechism so I was made well aware of the reality of mortal sin and the necessity of worthy communions. That might have been why I spent 30 minutes in my First Confession. Then I started high school at a public high school. My family still practiced and did many more devotions than your average, Mass-every Sunday and Holyday Catholic, but we started praying less as a family and the teaching was no longer ingrained in my mind every single day by a religion class. The Religious Education component of our Catholic Youth Ministry was a joke. So, that, combined with the onset of puberty, led to a rather rapid loss of the horror of mortal or any sin really. Sure, I went to confession, if I was lucky bimonthly, but I had some rather serious sins on my soul and rationalized my way out of having to go to confession.

    I go to college and keep going to Mass but it’s the same deal. One summer I stopped going to Mass for a couple of months. When I went back, I made sure to confess my sins before going to Mass, but I still continued to receive communion when I really should not have. This got even worse when I started discerning my vocation and a well-intentioned and otherwise solid priest told me that I was not culpable for a certain sin due to habit that had become something of an addiction and that I should receive communion to give me strength to combat it (Sound familiar). I became quite comfortable and this continued really until I got married.

    It was not until really, finally not only believing it in my mind but in a very real way MEETING Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament that I started to be concerned about whether I should receive communion or not. Talked it over with a different confessor and started to not receive if I had committed the sin and not yet confessed it. The first couple times it was enormously awkward and embarassing but by making a resolution to NEVER receive Holy Communion in a state of objective mortal sin, it helped me to fight off that sin much more effectively. I still struggle and fail but far less often.

    • Keep the previous priest in your prayers. Your prayers for him and his soul might well keep him out of Hell in the afterlife! Do not have any guilt as to what the former priest told you in Confession. That is on his shoulders, and he will answer to God for it. Keep the Faith!

    • Same experience.
      They refuse to acknowledge that only when you adopt a position in conformity to the truth can the remedy be actualized. It hurts, but the reward is indeed a hundred fold. In this manner we share in the sufferings of Christ — and isn’t that the object of our faith? Union with Jesus Christ in time and Eternity.
      By far the majority of the episcopate, the clergy and religious do not hold this understanding so they cannot benefit from it, nor impart it.
      They are, practically speaking, atheists.
      That is the core difficulty. Unbelief.
      God reward you, Thomas, for embracing His gifts to you of humility and fortitude.

      • I used to joke that I was going to confess to murder one time with my parent’s pastor in the confessional, just to check to see if he was paying attention. I never got more than one Our Father as a penance from him.

        • I’ve sometimes recommended a Divine Mercy chaplet to confessors (takes a little over 5 minutes to pray the chaplet), but they’ve never picked up on it.

  32. It is arguable that the shift from receiving our Lord on the tongue while kneeling to in the hand while standing is also reflective of an earlier, deeper cultural shift of modernism arising out of the Enlightenment. That is, the shift to separate the self from the body. If one’s body is merely a container for one’s “true” and “authentic” self, then such things as kneeling lose their profound theological meaning; the actions of the body become largely inconsequential, and can even feel like play-acting to someone who has internalized the modernist anthropology.

  33. such an imaginative article, it is so alarmist that any objective person should be comfortable knowing how many rash conclusions and assumptions it contains thus rendering it harmless except to those all ready pre-disposed to attack Pope Francis and the Magisterium of our Holy Catholic Church.

  34. it is literally amazing to discover how many people on the internet are, like many of those in this thread, arrogant enough to attack Pope Francis because THEY do not possess adequate knowledge and understanding of the Roman Catholic faith to accept Amoris Laetitia. the division and misunderstanding they promote appears to be of little to no consequence in their extreme hubris and confusion. obviously, my words will, most likely, have no impact on their own, apparent self-aggrandizement; but, hopefully, others who are more humble and do not pretend to be a substitute Roman Catholic Magisterium, will slow down in joining the lynch mob these people want to create for Pope Francis.

      • no insults, just an evaluation of the comments with a possible explanation for their constant drumbeat of division and defiance toward our Holy Father. why do you think they attack if it is not because they believe they understand the teaching of Our Lord better than His Vicar here on earth? i would be interested in knowing.

        • The only thing you are interested in doing is causing disturbance like a little mischievous imp.
          It’s quite transparent and you are far from clever. You are best ignored lest supporters of this site
          stray into uncharitable waters.

        • “drumbeat of division”? Hmm wasn’t it Francis himself who boasted that he would be the one to split the Catholic Church?

      • Simon, this guy is probably a supporter of Francis’ openness to homosexuality and the LGBT agenda in general. It’s a kind of controlled “#itchiness.” He’s angry and likes to stir up anger in others (anger is always the hallmark of those of that persuasion): misery loves company.

        Notice he uses big words to say nothing.

        Ignore him.

    • You can’t be serious. Just this week a German Bishop suggested blessings for homosexual unions, another reported a new ecumenical mass is in the works for shared reception of the Eucharist with Protestants. The sacrilegious Manger scene in the Vatican, The sacrilegious mural painted with Bishop Paglia, the recent comment by a priest promoting contraception, another Italian priest stated to his congregation that he does not recite the Creed anymore because he does not believe in it. Population control and the environment, I could go on for days. Pope Francis is responsible for these issues occurring, plain and simple. I pray for Pope Francis every day, but anyone with any knowledge of the Catholic faith can see what is happening to the church. Our lady of Fatima warned us of same. We all need to pray the Rosary daily!

    • Interesting you should mention “substitute Roman Catholic magisterium” because that is exactly what Francis is trying to set up in opposition to the True Faith. Which you would recognize if you had even a rudimentary understanding of the Catholic Faith.

  35. why do you think those who attack our Holy Father so consistently resort to “ad hominem” attacks, to name-calling and insults? if they were so in tune with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, one would expect great humility and precise arguments to support their own agendas. alas, this is seldom if ever the case.

  36. When the Curé d’Ars set about transforming his spiritual desert of a parish, he didn’t organise coffee mornings or a sponsored bike ride or start cracking jokes from the pulpit. He got up at 2 a.m.and spent the next 10 hours in adoring the Blessed Sacrament and in his preparation, offering and thanksgiving after Mass. Contrast that with a local parish that for a couple of years now has had to employ ‘ushers’ complete with red sashes to maintain ‘order’ at communion time during their main Sunday Mass and only a few months ago, inserted a polite notice in their newsletter requesting that parishioners refrain from bringing Holy Communion back to their pews. Fifty years of downplaying or completely rejecting the doctrine of the Real Presence has resulted in the sacrilege at this parish and no doubt countless other churches across the catholic world. How few parishes there are where the pastors would even think of recounting to their flock that during one of her apparitions to St. Catherine Labouré which resulted in the creation of the Miraculous Medal, Our Lady pointed to the tabernacle and said, “My daughter, in all your troubles, it is there you must find consolation.”

  37. Might we not refer to the Beloved as ‘it’, Host, etc….with impersonal words, but as the Eucharistic Trinity-Lamb or Blessed Lord God and the Holy Like…we talk and write about the Mystery as if it is a thing, and He is not a thing, it, etc….’it’ is not the Blessed Sacrament, ‘HE’ is the Blessed Sacrament! Blessed be the Eucharistic Beloved, the Living Triune Lamb!

  38. “Woe to the world because of evils! Such things must come, but woe to the one through whom they come.”

    In 1907, Father Robert Hugh Benson—footnoted above—wrote an apocalyptic novel called “The Lord of the World.” Apparently many readers, including many of his devoted fans, thought it was too dark and depressing.

    As Ann Applegarth observed in a July 2015 Catholic World Report article,

    “In 1911, in response to protests from dismayed readers who said they found the apocalyptic book Lord of the World (1907) “gloomy,” or “too pessimistic,” Benson reluctantly published The Dawn of All, in which the Church is seen as ultimately victorious and in command of most of the world (with other countries on deck!).

    [“Benson had assured his disgruntled admirers that the scenario figured forth in Lord of the World was biblical and that an end-of-times novel with a happy ending would
    merely describe a world that could never exist. Yet, finally, and perhaps unfortunately, he agreed to try.”]

    Probably the same year as the CWR article, 2015, Pope Francis was quoted as giving rather high praise to “The Lord of the World.” That’s more than a little ironic coming from a Pope who apparently believes—and wants us to believe—he’s changing the Church and, by extension, the world for the better. He seems to be a significant instrument toward that pessimistic End.

  39. And who are the traitors who implement the de-sacralisation at parish level where ‘the rubber of modernism meets the road”? It’s the rank and file parish clergy – the guys with the least to lose. It’s all one can do not to despise them.

  40. The first major step was the allowance of communion in the hand while standing

    I dont call this a long slow process. How long did this take, 6 months? Everyone was hungry all things councilular. The entire world waited for the liberalization of Catholicicsm. VII was like a bolt out of the blue. And I think its reversal, by a true pope, will be just as fast.


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