Receiving Communion in the hand

Practical difficulties

Changing the manner of receiving Holy Communion was not mentioned at all in any of the official sixteen documents of the Second Vatican Council. The Holy Father's report into the abuse in the Rhine countries following the Council, called Memoriale Domini (Instruction on the Manner of Administrating Holy Communion) published on May 29, 1969, by the Congregation for Divine Worship, concluded that "the long received manner of ministering Holy Communion to the faithful should not be changed". However, the practice soon spread around the world. Much campaigning by individual Bishops conferences to educate (or brainwash, depending on your opinion), was undertaken to prepare the way for the introduction of the practice. The result was that the practice inevitably took a firm hold, with most Catholics these days receive the King of Kings in their hands.

Arguments in favour of communion in the hand could then be dismissed because of the way it was re-introduced - there was no theological discussion where Communion in the hand was seen to improve people's faith. No, it was carried out in plain disobedience to the Holy Father. However, I will consider some of the arguments doing the rounds below:

The disadvantages of receiving Communion in the hand are many:

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Last modified 13th December, by David Joyce.