Saturday, July 26, 2008

"The doors, the doors!"

I’ve a growing concern for security around Our Lord’s Body and Blood. Here’s a reason why. There are others.

We (Catholics) will give the Eucharist to anyone who gets in line. “Satanists, blasphemers, pagans, excommunicants, step right up!” – seems to be a message we send by this practice.

This was not always so. Even today, there are Orthodox parishes where one is not able to receive communion unless the priest – to whom he has recently confessed his sins – knows him.

The Early Church was far more scrupulous regarding who may receive – or even attend during the consecration. There are remnants of this in the Divine Liturgy: “I will not reveal your mystery to your enemies,” all vow before communion; “The doors, the doors!” the priest calls out before the Liturgy of the Faithful (a.k.a. Liturgy of the Eucharist). This call is to signal that the doors must be guarded to keep out all intruders – pagans and catechumens already having been expelled by the deacon.

This expulsion fell away from the Liturgy in both East and West. In the centuries after the Edict of Milan, pagans and catechumens became hard to find in Christian Churches. Therefore, expelling them became mostly unnecessary.

This is no longer the case. Christendom has been crumbling for centuries, but has failed to respond liturgically to the situation. We are no longer a Christian culture. Surely this must be apparent? The many conveniences we’ve adopted over centuries of enjoying a Christian culture ought now to be abandoned.

Out of such convenience, the Roman Church has seen fit, by and large, to reinstitute an early Christian practice of communion in the hand, rather than on the tongue; along with this, they should reinstitute the expulsion of pagans and catechumens (and Satanists, atheists, unbelievers, Protestants, etc.). Communion in the hand makes theft and desecration of the Eucharist that much easier. None but the fully initiated should even be permitted in the presence of the Eucharist.

We must recognize the truth of the situation: we are now surrounded by unbelievers, many of whom come into our churches and steal Our Lord’s Body and Blood – often unwittingly. In some cases, this is done with open malice, but usually this is no crime of the one who receives inappropriately, but our own negligence towards the One Who offers Himself for us in the Eucharist.


Anonymous said...

Hi John, glad you're back!

AMEN. I've been complaining about the lack of security around the Eucharist for a long time, and it's nice to find someone else saying the same thing. Yes, we give to ANYONE who walks up, in the hand... but let me add Eucharistic Monsters-- I mean, ministers-- as a problem. Seems that having the Eucharist being flipped into everybody's hands by a bunch of laypeople is a bad idea too.

Back in April some idiot pilfered a Host from the Pope's mass at Yankee Stadium and put it up on Ebay-- about the second time that's happened.

Dave said...

The candidates and catechumens are still expelled anyway.

I'm no longer surprised at mass when 98% of the congregation comes forward during Communion. When I first saw this happen--after attending St. Boniface, where this was not the case--I reflected that such congregations must have been very holy. And while I still attempt to maintain this hope (especially during Mass itself), for better or worse I have gotten a bit cynical about it.

Dusty M Brahlek said...

Your post has brought several things to mind...

First, I am glad you said what the term "The doors, the doors" means. Lately everytime father says it I get a bit excited! Now I know what it means!

Second, toss'em out. If they have no business being there, then send them away. Depending on who and what they are doing there they may desicrate the host simply by their presents.

OK, I will stop now...

John R.P. Russell said...


When I wrote that none but fully initiated Catholics should be admitted in the presence of the Eucharist, I ought to have included some exceptions: babies of initiated Catholics awaiting baptism, and the Orthodox (who are catholic in the broad sense of the term) as well as members of a few other bona fide Churches not in union with Rome.

Anonymous said...

You probably won't post this comment but I want you to read it please.This post you wrote were among my first observations while I was in the novus ordo that told me something was wrong.Secondly it was the years preceeding and culminating with Vatican 2 that caused these blasphemy's to become mainstream & tolerated.Third,one reason sedevacantism may not be tolerated among byzantine catholics is that PAUL VI & JP2 didn't completely destroy and raze the eastern rite.From my limited knowledge,it seems the eastern brothers were very limited to 'changes' brought on by Vatican 2 novus ordo freemasonry.

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