Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In reflecting upon the role of Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, I find guidance from the profound teachings of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the Second Vatican Council, and the guidelines provided by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). These sources offer us a deeper understanding of the significance and proper execution of this ministry.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us of the essential truth that the Eucharist is the “source and summit” of the Christian life (CCC 1324). It is the sacrament in which we encounter the real presence of Christ, who offers Himself to us as spiritual nourishment. As Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, it is crucial to approach this sacred task with profound reverence, humility, and awe.
The Second Vatican Council emphasized the importance of the active participation of the laity in the liturgy (Sacrosanctum Concilium). The Council recognized that in certain circumstances when there is a scarcity of ordained ministers, the faithful can be called upon to assist in the distribution of Holy Communion. This participation should be seen as a service to the community, carried out with a deep understanding of the Eucharistic mystery and a commitment to the Church’s teachings.Rev. Dominic Toan Tran, Pastor
The USCCB provides guidance on the selection and training of Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion. They emphasize that these ministers should be fully initiated Catholics who lead a life of faith and are in good standing with the Church. They should also possess a deep reverence for the Eucharist and understand its significance.
The USCCB recommends that Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion receive proper formation and training before assuming their roles. This formation includes instruction on the theology of the Eucharist, the rubrics of the Mass, and the appropriate manner of distributing Holy Communion. It is important for them to understand the Sacredness of the Eucharist and to approach their ministry with reverence and respect.
During Mass, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion are typically called forward by the presiding priest or deacon. They may assist in the distribution of both the Body, Consecrated Bread, and Blood, Consecrated wine, or be assigned to distribute only one Species. They are instructed to handle the Consecrated Species with care and to ensure that each communicant receives the Eucharist properly.
Dear brothers and sisters, as Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, we need to remember that we are entrusted with a sacred duty. May we approach this ministry with humility, recognizing the great privilege it is to assist in the distribution of the Body and Blood of Christ. Let us seek continuous formation, deepening our knowledge and love for the Eucharist. May our actions be guided by the teachings of the Church and our reverence for the real presence of Christ.
Through our faithful service, may we contribute to the spiritual nourishment of the faithful and foster a deeper appreciation and love for the Eucharist in the hearts of all.
Extra Ordinary Eucharistic Minister Schedule
Click on this link, OCTOBER 2023 EM SCHEDULE, to view the October 2023 Extra Ordinary Eucharistic Minister Schedule.
Click on this link to view and print the EM Station positions, which shows where the Extra Ordinary Eucharistic Ministers stand when distributing the Eucharist at Mass.