Discussion of BCL Newsletter
26 July 2001
This edition has lots on the decision making process for the
changes to the document "This Holy and Living Sacrifice".
Only two of the 214 bishops voted "No". However the
changes being proposed are not mandatory, but simply making it
an option for the diocesan bishop.
As the Newletter reports: "granting to diocesan Bishops
in the dioceses of the United States of America the faculty of
permitting extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion ... (3)
to assist with the purification of sacred vessels."
It seems like a compromise solution. Why would a bishop object
to being allowed to make a choice? The newsletter reports the
meeting of 12-13 June 2001 as producing "two revised documents",
including "This Holy and Living Sacrifice".
But I am concerned about added complexity and administrative
difficulties of such an approach. It adds to the complexity of
the laws for one diocese to have any Minister of Holy Communion
do the purifications and another only allow the instituted acolytes
do it. How are the individual bishop's decrees to be promulgated?
What happens when there is a change of bishops? What should Liturgy
Training Publications write for a nationwide (if not worldwide)
Here is part of the newsletter:
Copyright J.R. Lilburne, 28 July 2001. Last updated
2 Oct 2001.
This Holy and Living Sacrifice
Following recently made revisions to the Institutio Generalis
Missalis Romani, the Congregation for Divine Worship and
the Discipline of the Sacraments and the National Conference
of Catholic Bishops approved a revision of This Holy and Living
Sacrifice: Norms for the Celebration and Reception of Communion
Under Both Kinds for the Dioceses of the United States of America
(THLS). These norms were developed in the light of GIRM, no.
283 which empowers Conferences of Bishops to publish guidelines
describing "the methods of distributing holy Communion to
the faithful under both kinds..." As a directory, THLS includes
both a summary of those theological reflections necessary for
a catechesis on distribution of Holy Communion under both kinds
and practical norms for its implementation. THLS was developed
in consultation with the Secretariat for Doctrine and Pastoral
Practices and several of the Committee's theological consultants.
The Secretariat for the Liturgy bore primary responsibility for
incorporating into a final draft those revisions made by the
NCCB Committee on the Liturgy at three separate meetings in March,
June and November, 2000. In addition to other provisions, the
norms provide for three actions which are requested by way of
indult, granting to diocesan Bishops in the dioceses of the United
States of America the faculty of permitting extraordinary ministers
of Holy Communion (1) to assist with distribution of the Precious
Blood into other chalices; (2) to assist with the consumption
of what remains of the Precious Blood and, (3) to assist with
the purification of sacred vessels. On June 15, 2001, two hundred
fourteen Latin rite members of the National Conference of Catholic
Bishops approved these adaptations with two negative votes and
no abstentions. One hundred seventy-seven affirmative votes were
required for approval. The norms may not be published or applied,
however, until they have been confirmed by the Holy See.