Friday, April 24, 2009

Do it yourself sacraments?

<<ordinary and extraordinary ministers who, in reality, are not administering the sacrament.>>>[Reverend Frederick Heuser]

There is an excellent article on the modern diminishment of the priest's role in the sacraments found at the above link. Father Heuser does not use the weird image of a Monarch snatching the crown away from the bishop's hand so he can put it on himself (I heard that somewhere else) but his article does point out that taking Communion in the hand removes the Eucharistic minister's role entirely.

I can hear 'so what?' Imagine, Father Heuser writes, a bishop handing a container of Holy Chrism to a confirmation candidate so that he can anoint himself? Or someone baptizing themselves? That is what is happening when people take Communion in the hand. They are not allowing the minister to administer. They are self-administering. This refusal to allow onself to receive a Sacrament communicated from another human minister attacks a fundamental truth of Catholicism, i.e. salvation comes to us thru the ministry of a flesh-and-blood, identifiable, human organization known as the Church.

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