Wednesday 7 July 2010

Communion in the Old Rite

Ecclesia Dei - no communion in the hand in the old rite!

The below letter has been reproduced from a German site,

It confirms what we all should know, but which some have doubted.

"In reference to your letter of 15th June, this Papal Commission would like to point out that the celebration of Holy Mass in the extraordinary form envisages the reception of Holy Communion while kneeling, as the Holy Host is laid directly on the tongue of the communicant. There is no provision for the distribution of Holy Communion on the hand in this form of the Holy Mass."

The Secretariat of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei.


  1. Although this letter does not seem to hold any legal force, it clearly gives a moral boost to those who want the Old Rite to be kept free of the abuses of the New.

  2. I serve an EF low mass on a regular basis and at least 50% of the small congregation stand and offer their hands to recieve the Host at communion.What is the celebrant to do,refuse communion?Our priest doesnt make a fuss and gives them communion.I cannot understand people attending EF masses on a regular basis and expecting the celebrant to give them communion in the hand whilst standing.

  3. MC Man - the priest should announce before the notices that communion in the traditional mass is received on the tongue and kneeling (unless prevented from doing so for health reasons). Those who belligerently put their hand out, are obviously there to "prove a point" and that in itself calls into question their predisposition to receive the sacrament.

  4. Usually an announcement does the trick, particularly when the congregation is unused to the old rite.

    Sometimes people just put their hands out as a matter of instinct, rather than to make a point - they've been doing it for so long, they forget. When the communion plate is firmly placed under their chin they will usually just put out their tongue and receive in the time-honoured fashion.