Parish News

Directives for Receiving Holy Communion

June 1, 2020 12:00 am

These temporary guidelines are in place in all parishes in the Diocese of Wilmington. They are for our safety. If you feel uneasy about receiving Communion at this time, you may refrain.

  • The distribution of the Precious Blood to the laity continues to be suspended until further notice.
  • Each Priest and Deacon is to consume the Precious Blood from separate chalices. (Note that while the Deacon here has his own chalice, he must be given his chalice by the Priest-celebrant; he is not permitted to communicate himself.) Each is to purify the chalice he uses.
  • Immediately after consuming the Sacrament, the Priest-celebrant and Deacon are to disinfect their hands, even if they do not distribute Communion.
  • All Priests, Deacons, and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion must wear face masks for the distribution of Communion.
  • The practice of self- communication (i.e. a communicant taking a host from the ciborium instead of receiving from a minister) remains prohibited.
  • A small table is to be placed next to each station for distribution. On each table is to be placed a corporal, a purificator, and a hand sanitizer.
  • If the minister of Communion touches the hand of a communicant, or if a communicant receives on the tongue, the minister is to place the ciborium on the corporal and sanitize his hands before distributing to the next communicant. 
  • Communicants have a right to receive on tongue if they so choose.  However, we are to strongly encourage them not to.  If they must, then they should wait and come forward at the end of the line.  If appropriate, pastors may choose to have a separate line for those who wish to receive on the tongue.
  • The minister of Communion must sanitize his hands in the manner described above after every communicant that receives on the tongue.

Instructions for those receiving Holy Communion

  • All Catholics present who are in a state of grace are invited to receive Communion at this time.
  • Those who have health concerns and do not wish to receive sacramental Communion may make an Act of Spiritual Communion
  • Those who will not receive communion should not come forward with hands crossed for a blessing; there is a blessing for everyone at the end of Mass.
  • Children who will not receive communion but who are old enough to remain quietly in their pew should do so, and not get in the line for Communion.
  • When you approach for Communion, please remain six feet from others in the line and from the minister. When it is your time to receive, keep your mask on and remain six feet away from the minister while he shows the Host and says, The Body of Christ. After you respond, Amen, approach the minister.
  • Receive the Host in your hand, then step six feet to the side, away from the minister. Then loosen your facial covering, consume the Host, and replace the facial covering.