As Bishops around the world begin to release rules about the reception of the Eucharist in the shadow of the Corona Virus, we members of the faithful may be faced with difficult decisions, especially if our bishop decides, out of an abundance of caution and concern for his flock, to prevent members of the faithful from receiving Our Lord on the tongue.
Reception of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament is something that we have discussed often, here in Apostoli Viae, and this post is meant to gather those discussions in one place, to help those who are struggling with this issue determine the best approach in this context. Below are links to posts in which this topic is thoroughly discussed. (Note: Some of these posts are accessible by non-Apostoli Viae members, while others are reserved for members. To become a member and access all resources, please go to the Apostoli Viae home page and click on the "Join Us!" button.)
First, some important points Dan has often made should be reiterated:
Apostoli Viae members are deeply committed to giving all that we are to Christ. As a result, we focus our energy where we have the ability to have a real impact — on ourselves — how we can humble ourselves before God and serve others to do the same. The enemy would love to get us to focus on and complain about Bishops and priests, but this is rarely constructive outside of illustrative situations that help us to understand how we should humbly respond. So, even though many of us are truly suffering, let's work hard to minimize any complaints and use that energy instead toward prayer and giving our lives to helping others to be holy in these ever-darkening times.
Apostoli Viae members who have made first promises—Disciples—are committed to participating in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in a manner that is most reverent, which reflects a deep love and awe for the reality of the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. When there are options regarding liturgical actions or participation, as in the Novus Ordo liturgy, we will always pursue those that are most reverent and humble.
For those of you who are not members, or have recently joined Apostoli Viae and are in the Sojourner stage, this is an opportunity to take this to prayer and ask Our Lord what He wants of you. The journey to receiving Our Heavenly Lord kneeling and on the tongue can be a long or short one. Regardless, throughout that journey, we must remember that it is Our Lord who is leading us by the hand, lovingly, gently. Our role is always to keep our eyes on Him, to continually check in with Him and ask, "Lord, what is it You want of me?" Is the Son of God inviting you to begin this journey? Take this to prayer. He will show You His will, as long as you open your heart and trust in Him.
As we return to Mass under the current conditions, we may be faced with the option of only receiving the Eucharist in a manner which could result in particles of the Blessed Sacrament falling to the ground, or which affords Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament less reverence than He deserves. In this situation, we have a few options:
In the beginning, the middle, and the end, the answer is always the same: take this to prayer and ask Our Lord to reveal His will. Whatever we decide to do after much prayer, all should be done in peace, reverence, and respect for our priests and bishops, even when we don’t agree. Criticism (in public or private) should be avoided, as it has no redemptive value and can be very sinful and destructive to the Body of Christ. We are called to be a people of joy and confidence in the storm. We don’t waste time cursing the darkness, instead, we use our energy to light the Way. We must strive to peacefully and respectfully help others understand the options and pray and sacrifice for the restoration of reverence.
Lastly, let us pray the following prayer, which will help tremendously in light of the fact that the enemy longs to drag us into the future, where we can worry about what hasn't yet happened, or into the past, where we can worry about what has. Our Lord is in the present, and we must seek Him there. It is there, where we will hear His still, small voice, and be able to discern His will for us in the midst of this storm.
May God be praised now and forever.
Most glorious, kind, and blessed God of the present moment, I beg Your grace and Your presence that I might be able to reject the temptations of the enemy and my flesh that drive my mind to obsess on the past or worry about the future. Help me instead to embrace the sufferings and challenges of the present moment knowing that You are with me in them and that if I surrender myself to You and the duties of this present moment, You will give me all I need to endure or overcome any challenge, take care of all matters that are outside of my control, and will reveal Yourself and Your holy will within and through them. By Your grace I reject, in Jesus’ name, all regrets, laments, frustrations, or other temptations that draw my thoughts and attention away from the duties of this present moment and more importantly, away from Your presence and provision. I affirm, invoke, and implore the power of Jesus’ name against the efforts of the enemy to draw me out of Your presence in this moment, and I, by God’s Grace, His Divine Will, and my human will, through the power of the Holy Spirit, choose to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. Mary, Mother of the Divine Will, pray for me.
Note: all images are links.
This video contains a discussion of Apostoli Viae's stance on Reception of the Holy Eucharist.
This post contains an audio reflection on the present crisis of faith and our response.
The prayers mentioned in the previous audio can be found in this post.
This post addresses receiving Holy Communion.
Cardinal Burke wrote a message on Combatting the Coronavirus.
This post contains links to books, blogs posts, and videos that we recommend for more information about how to participate more deeply in our sacred liturgy. (Because most issues in our time are with the Novus Ordo, most of these materials focus on the Novus Ordo.)
This post includes two letters from the priests of St. Thomas the Apostle Parish, Phoenix, AZ, on the Ad Orientem celebration of the Mass. This is great reading for those who want to understand better why this way of celebrating Mass is allowed and often preferred.
This post includes some illuminating documents, written by some of the brightest minds and holiest men in our Church, which address some of the theological and ecclesiastical errors of our time.
This post contains a prayer that Apostoli Viae Disciples pray daily against division among us all and in the Church.
During the first Avila Summit in 2018, Father Cassian Folsom, OSB, of the Monks of Norcia, spoke on Sacred Music and how it should be used in Mass. We here at Apostoli Viae have adopted his take on the subject.
This post addresses something that is often seen at Mass: applause...
We must avoid spiritual pride in all of this—the leaven of the Pharisees. The enemy tries to get us in every way he can, and this is a really nefarious one. This topic is addressed in these posts.