A Church norm of long standing provides: “Those…whole obstinately persists in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted in Holy Communion” (Canon 915 code of Canon Law). This canonical provision is official in nature, categorical in content and universal in scope – and as old as old can be. It admits no exception even for the powerful and influential, for rich and the famous. The truth is that those who pretend to be very saintly yet in fact guilty of many big fat juicy sins and still dare to receive Holy Communion for whatever hypocritical reason, are asking for big trouble nor only here and now, but also hereafter and beyond.
As nothing divine, sanctified and sanctifying is thrown to the garbage can, it is a big sacrilege for Holy Communion to be given to those who continue to wallow in one gross public sin after another, i,e., to those who persists in flagrant violations of the Commandments of God as a matter of course “like drinking water.” In this case, instead of sanctifying themselves, they in fact callously defile their persons precisely by gravely desecrating the Body and Blood of Christ through the most unworthy reception of Holy Communion.
To those subscribing to the Catholic Faith and complaint of Catholic Morals, it is a well know and accepted truth that in the reception of Holy Communion, nothing less than the most Holy and Precious Body and Blood of Christ are in fact received by the communicant. The Sacrament of the Most Blessed Eucharist is rightfully considered as the center and the summit of the all the Sacraments of and all the devotions in the Church. There is absolutely nothing more hallowed and more inviolable in the whole Catholic Church the world over, than the Most Blessed Eucharist.
No. this is definitely not to say that only the sinless and the saintly may received Holy Communion. For who is without sin? Who is a living Saint? There is a whale of a difference however between being sinful on account of human frailty or by reason of temptations – and being sinful by force of hidden or public habit, through vicious and atrocious misdeeds, in terms of outrageous conduct and devastating behavior effective of injustice to and the misery of others – without any convincing sign of repentance coupled by amendment on the part of the known sinner.
The Lord Jesus entrusted to His People, the Sacrament of His Most Previous Body and Blood – to give them the wisdom and the courage to live an upright life here on earth during their pilgrimage to the life here after in the Kingdom of the Father. Woe to those who instead misuse or abuse the Sacrament merely for the sake of outside saintly appearance while vile and putrid in the inside, like whitened sepulchers.
Would that all Catholic receive Holy Communion as often as they can – on proviso only that they are free of really grave or truly mortal sins through proper repentance and purpose of amendment. Otherwise…
12 May 2008