Infrequent Sacramental Encounters Good?

A few weeks back Liam sent me this quote from a NLM guest contributor, Maurizio Bettoja:

In the first place, there is the fact that communion is evidently a particularly important and exceptional rite. Communion as practiced today is essentially due to St. Pius X’s encouragement of frequent communion but before then, communion was sparingly given and almost all faithful communicated only at Easter (the “precetto Pasquale”) and perhaps one or two times a year. In the late 18th century frequent communion meant once a month. Msgr. Barbier de Montault’s Année liturgique à Rome (1862 and 1870) lists the few Roman churches where general communion was distributed, showing that generally communion was not included in ordinary Masses. In fact, very often communion, especially at Easter, was not part of the Mass: the faithful would go to confession in Lent or Easter and a priest distributing communion would be placed immediately next to the confessional so that penitents passed directly from confession to communion without time to sin! Generally speaking, in the past one would go often to confession and rarely to communion, whereas now it is the opposite. All this contributed to the reverence, sacrality, and exceptional importance of holy communion.

… along with this comment:

So, I guess that means infrequent confession has contributed to the reverence, sacrality, and exceptional importance of Reconciliation.

Or that the real Catholics out there are the ones who come only on Christmas and Easter.

In another day or two, we’ll be seeing lots of those “old-style” Catholics–the ones who receive Communion only once or twice a year. I wouldn’t mind making a few converts to Pius X Catholics.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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3 Responses to Infrequent Sacramental Encounters Good?

  1. Jimmy Mac says:

    So if I only go once more before I die, I’ll be a very REAL Catholic?

    What is it about Catholicism that invites so much utter nonsense from the mouths and minds of “the faithful few?”

  2. I wouldn’t mind making a few converts to Pius X Catholics.

    Tongue firmly in cheek, upper quadrant-
    So, Todd, Bruder von mich, are you now actively supporting the supposed agenda of our Holy Father that envisions a “smaller, purer Church?”
    Strange bedfellows, indeed.
    The few, the proud, the ROMAN Catholics!
    Seeing as how I’ve been outed as a fence-sitter, don’t leak my name. They’ll come for me on Krystal Nacht Zwei. I’ll be meek and mild, tender and….
    Merry Christmas and here’s looking to Ought Twelve being better than butter. Even if the Mayans are correct!

  3. Todd says:

    Pius X Catholics = frequent communicants

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