Understanding Hand Communion
Why it Should NOT be Received !
The Church Speaks | Father Nicholas Gruner Speaks
The practice of Hand Communion began as an abuse in Holland, where mandatory liturgical norms were defied. When disciplinary action was not forthcoming, so the practice spread to Germany, Belgium and France . Thus the Holy See Later allowed a pastoral concession to areas where the practice had already developed May 1969, this approval only meant that people had an option, whoever if one was to truly comprehend the What was being given to him, truly no hand would ever be put forward to Touch some thing that the Angels of Heaven worship and Adore. Not even to the Angels is Given this Great gift of the Body blood sole and Divinity of Christ. In his love for us God Reserved for us His Holy Body and Blood so that he may live within us, in order that we may be moulded into him. This Approval next foresaw the same grant being given to the United States in June,1977. As we can see Hand Communion was Founded on disobedience to the Holy See and has Continued to be fostered by deceit.
It is often argued that for the first few centuries of Christianity, Holy Communion was received in the hand and so why shouldn't it continue in this way. However this was due to the Fact that that the Christians were being persecuted and no real Councils could be held , yet under the Synod of Rouen in 650 AD Hand Communion was condemned as an abuse. Also as eucharistic doctrine developed and eucharistic abuses increased (using the sacred host for satanic rites, for example),the Church gradually withdrew the option, so that already in eighth- century Spain Communion on the tongue was mandated, and by the early Middle Ages that was the case for the whole Church. Some may Point out that the Apostles received communion in the hand at the Last Supper, but one must not forget that they had just been consecrated as bishops. In further answer to this Pope Pius XII warned that "the desire to restore everything indiscriminately to its ancient condition is neither wise nor praiseworthy" (Mediator Dei). This is because to bring something back into use for pure archaeological reasons when it has no spiritual Benefit is Useless. Further it can be said to fully accept first century practice would be, for example, to exclude sculptors, painters, actors and eunuchs from Baptism. Baptized babies would be given Holy Communion under the form of wine, and public penance would again beexacted for certain sins.
Pope John Paul II has spoken on Hand communion and has Said ""To touch the sacred species, and to distribute them with their own hands, is a privilege of the ordained..." It is said He frowns on the practice of Communion in the hand for a variety of reasons, not least of which is that universal liturgical law forbids it. He has done it himself on occasion to avoid controversy at the altar, but has made clear to national hierarchies where he visits, his desire for people receiving Holy Communion from him to receive it on the tongue.
The idea of Communion in the hand is taken from Protestantism which denies that Christ is Truly Present regardless of the Fact that our Lord makes it Clear many times in Scripture that we are receiving Truly His body and Blood ( Mathew 26:26, John 6:51), thus by our acceptance of this we so as to say add to this denial that Christ is Truly presence in this Holy Sacrament. However St Paul condemned this as he says: ( 1 Corinthians 27-29) "Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of Sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the Cup . For anyone who eats and Drinks without recognising the body of the Lord eats and drinks Judgement on Himself."
Finally to Lend credence to this innovation , the promoters cite written instructions by St. Cyril of Jerusalem on the manner of receiving in the hand. It is submitted that several other writers (among them Sherman, Esans, Richard and Teifer) attribute the So called "Written instructions" to the Successor of St. Cyril, the Patriach John of Jerusalem. This man has been called a cryptoarian. This opion was held by St. Epiphanius, St Jerome, ans St. Augustine. Thus it would seem that St. Cyril, is being used by the innovators as their authority , when most reliable writers claim otherwise. Further is the fact that it was St. Cyril who warned the faithful with the following exhortation " Partake of it, ensuring that you do not mislay any of it. For if you mislay any, you would clearly suffer a loss as it were, from one of your limbs. Tell me, if anyone gave you gold dust, would you not take hold of it with every possible care, ensuring that you did not mislay any of it or sustain any loss? So will you not be much more cautious to ensure that not a crumb falls away from that which is more precious than gold or precious stones?
What about those who claim we are returning to a primitive Christian practice?
This was answered by Pope Pius XII in his encyclical Mediator Dei (1947), as he described this tendency (returning to primitive practices) as " a wicked movement that tends to paralyze the sanctifying and salutary action by which the liturgy leads the children of adoption on the path to their heavenly Father." He further explained that " . . .the desire to restore everything indiscriminately to its ancient condition is neither wise nor praiseworthy. It would be wrong, for example, to want the altar restored to its ancient from a table; to want black excluded from our liturgical colors, and pictures and statues excluded from our Churches." Cardinal Newman in his book " The Development of Christian doctrine" also condemned such false thinking, warning that to reverse the course of an existing development is not a development but a corruption.
The inescapable conclusion from all this is that receiving Communion on the tongue is one of the most time honored traditions of the Catholic Church. To state otherwise is only being intellectually dishonest.
"An enemy has done this" (Matthew 13:28)