A number of the reforms after the Vatican Council were authorized, but not by Vatican II. (See previous posts entitled “Which Changes did Vatican II authorize? Parts 1,”… 2 and … 3 “respectively.) Many of these “were authorized only after stubborn disobedience”.
“For instance, Pope Paul VI, in his Memoriale Domini of 29th May, 1969, allowed national Conferences of Bishops to ask him for permission to legitimate ‘Communion in the Hand’. But in this very document the Pope recorded that two thirds of the world’s bishops were against it! Clearly, it would NOT have been approved by Vatican II. The dissenters learnt their lesson: ‘disobey long enough and you’ll get what you want’. “(Newsletter of Cardinal Newman Catechist Centre: No 161; 5th April, 1999; p. 5, Editor -The Rev. B.J.H. Tierney.)
Communion in the Hand was first introduced by Protestant reformers in the 16th century to give credit to their disbelief in the ‘Real Presence’, and also the Catholic priesthood. In the 1960’s , Holland – under the influence of Protestantism, (without permission), adopted this practice and began to spread its errors around the world. After a survey of the world’s bishops in response to this problem, Pope Paul VI said : “From the responses received, it is thus clear that by far the greater number of bishops feel that the present discipline [i.e., Holy Communion on the tongue] should not be changed at all, indeed that if it were changed, this would be offensive to the sensibility and spiritual appreciation of these bishops and of most of the faithful.”
Although the pope would not authorize Communion in the hand. He was, however, open to bestowing an indult –under certain conditions:
first, an indult could not be given to a country in which Communion in the hand was not an already established practice;
second, the bishops in countries where it was established must approve of the practice “by a secret vote and with a two-thirds majority.”
Beyond this, the Holy See set down seven additional regulations; failure to maintain these regulations could result in the loss of the indult. The first three regulations concerned:
1) respecting the laity who continue the traditional practice (of receiving kneeling and on the tongue),
2) maintaining the laity’s proper respect of the Eucharist, and
3) strengthening the laity’s faith in the real presence. See more at: (http://www.newliturgicalmovement.org/2014/03/truth-about-communion-in-hand-while.html )
As we can see, all the rules were disregarded, and what should have been the exception, spread like wildfire.
Needless to say, this practice led to other abuses:
– the taking away of the altar rails, where one would kneel to receive Communion;
No Communion plate, leading to fragments being dropped and scattered on the floor;
This, together with the abandonment of many of the other liturgical signs such as extraordinary ministers and acolytes – all of whom could now touch and handle, not only the Sacred Host and Precious Blood, but also the Sacred vessels;
Less bells being rung to alert us to the Mystery taking place;
Shaking hands, turning around and speaking, RIGHT AFTER the Consecration (the most solemn part of the Mass); etc
These all led to a relaxation and loss of belief in the real presence The sense of the Sacred has been lost – people gossip before Mass begins, they don’t genuflect before the tabernacle; quite often you can’t even SEE the tabernacle. Jesus, Who is present is ignored and very little respect or acknowledgement of His presence is given. Not many people can be seen praying before Mass – (it’s too noisy anyway!) It’s all very sad! Poor Jesus!!!
The proposals of Amoris Laetitia, therefore make me shiver in my boots! Haven’t they learned their lesson? – Or perhaps they have. For the changes which will now come into effect – the sky is the limit!
QUOTES about Communion in the hand:
“Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith, secretary of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, (to) recently suggest(ed) the policy of giving Communion in the hand be revised or “abandoned altogether.” It is Archbishop Ranjith’s belief that the introduction of this practice after Vatican II has resulted in indifference, outrages and sacrileges toward our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, causing great harm to both the Catholic Church and to individual souls. (See the full article at: https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=8616 )
Pope John Paul II:
“It is not permitted that the faithful should themselves pick up the consecrated bread and the sacred chalice, still less that they should hand them from one to another.” , Inaestimabile Donum (April, 1980) –
. In Dominicae Cenae (Feb. 1980), he stated: “To touch the sacred species and to distribute them with their own hands is a privilege of the ordained.”
Padre Pio — St. Pio of Pietrelcina :
— Received Only on the Tongue, and never said a Novus Ordo Mass.
St Thomas Aquinas:
“. . . out of reverence towards 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” (Summa Theologiae, III, 82, 3).
Pope Benedict XVI (quoting St Augustine):
Encyclical Sacramentum Caritatis, no.66 (“Sacrament of Love”), teaches:
“No one eats that flesh without first adoring it; we should sin were we not to adore it” (Enarrationes in Psalmos 98, 9).
Kneeling indicates and promotes the adoration necessary before receiving the Eucharistic Christ.”