Guard Against Abuses

April 19, 2008

Peruvian Cardinal Stops Communion in the Hand

Lima, Apr. 17, 2008 (CWNews.com) – A Peruvian cardinal reports that he has banned the practice of receiving Communion in the hand.

Speaking to the Italian web site Petrus, Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne of Lima, Peru, said that in order to guard against abuses, “the best way to administer Communion is on the tongue.”

Cardinal Cipriani told Petrus that he took the step to halt Communion in the hand in order to promote greater reverence for the Eucharist. In some cases, he said, the practice had led to gross abuses. More generally he cited the “relaxed attitude of many priests” as a cause for the decline in reverence.

Communion in hand should be revised, Vatican official says

.- Archbishop Albert Malcolm Ranjith, Secretary of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Cult and Discipline of the Sacraments has said that the policy of giving Communion in the hand should be revised.

Receiving Holy Communion in the hand “produces a growing weakening of a devout attitude toward the Most Holy Sacrament,” wrote Archbishop Ranjith in the preface of a book from the Auxiliary Bishop of Kazakhstan, Bishop Athanasius Schneider.

The book’s title, printed by the Vatican Editing house, is “Dominus Est: Meditations of a Bishop from Central Asia on the Sacred Eucharist.”

Archbishop Ranjith says in the preface that the Eucharist should be received “with reverence and an attitude of devout adoration,” and claims that the practice of receiving Communion in the hand “was introduced in some places in an abusive and hurried manner.”

The Archbishop also highlights that the Second Vatican Council never promoted or legitimated such practice.

“I believe it is time to evaluate and reconsider such a practice, and if necessary, abandon it all together,” Ranjith concludes.

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