Monday, 14 March 2011

Fr J Hardon SJ, on Communion in the Hand

"Behind Communion in the hand—I wish to repeat and make as plain as I can—is a weakening, a conscious, deliberate weakening of faith in the Real Presence.... Whatever you can do to stop Communion in the hand will be blessed by God.”

- Fr. Hardon, S.J., November 1st, 1997 Call to Holiness Conference in Detroit, Michigan, panel discussion. 

At the moment I am reading With Us Today: On the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, (Saint Austin Press: 2002) kindly loaned to me by a fellow parishioner. It is a magnificent read which would deepen any person's love of Our Lord in the Sacred Species and increase devotion to the Real Presence.

I highly recommend this wonderful book.


  1. Right with you and Fr Hardon. Fr Simon Henry on Offerimus Tibi Domine also has this topic covered.

  2. Could I perhaps, as a practising Catholic (and a Welshman), ask a difficult question before I make my final adieu, as I detect a distinct lack of welcome on this blog that has rather shocked and saddened me?

    Which is the more blessed - the Host handed out by a molester priest, or the Host, received by hand, by an innocent child? I think the wonderful, wonderful priests that I have been blessed to know, would be equally perplexed.

  3. Sorry to see you go Dafydd - but I'm not sorry to defend the Sacred Species.

    1. By the time a child receives Communion that child goes to Confession, so he is no longer innocent in the sense of a baptised child.

    2. Who are we to be so proud and vein that we think it is our right to handle Our Lord - Body, Blood, Soul & Divinity - at the risk of fumbling, having dirty hands, or giving greater chance to those who would pocked Our Lord to do terrible things?

    3. We have priests who are consecrated to Our Lord, ordained for their ministery. Let them handle the sacred species and let us simply receive it. We should be HONOURED that Our Lord beliuttles Himself to come down to this world when the Host is Consecrated. Why do we feel the need to handle him? I am not a priest. I am not a Bishop. I am happy to be a layman, and ecstatic to receive Our Lord. That is more than enough and more than I am worthy of!

    4. Countless holy men and women have spoken out against this practise. It is not universal. This Pope and the one before are [at best!] uneasy about it: so why defend it? The Saintly Mother Teresa said it is the WORST THING IN THE WORLD [and she worked in true poverty, in real destitution, in almost hopeless situations]. Do we know better in our Western well-to-do lives?

    It is up to you what blogs you read and where you visit.

    I hope you come back, but that's not important. But even more I pray that you will find a deep love of Our Lord in the Real Presence in the Tabarnacles on our Altars, that you may no longer desire to handle Him, but rather receive Him in His entirety, reverently, devoutly, and with true peace and humility, on the tongue.

    As for your question: if the Host is consecrated properly (ie it is not an invalid Mass] if the priest is a murderer, rapist, abuser, bank-robber, mugger, bigamist and all: that Host is still HOLIER than any living thing on this world.

    Until you accept that, you are not a true Catholic, because to be a true Catholic you must love, honour and worship Our Lord in the Sacred Species, even down to defending His Rights and His Majesty on the Altar to the death.


    Not really: that is EXACTLY what countless Saints did, and we give them due honour.

    That is Catholicism.

    "Missing you already" ;-)