Who Brings Communion to a Priest?

new low gluten hostA priest friend of mine, retired, underwent knee replacement surgery today. Our associate pastor went to visit. I’m not sure if he brought the Eucharist. But it struck me that a priest might be alone in a town, perhaps isolated from his brother clergy if he were to fall ill or be hospitalized. Maybe FrMichael and a few others can weigh in.

How often does a sick priest receive Communion from a lay person, if there is no other ordained person available? Just curious.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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3 Responses to Who Brings Communion to a Priest?

  1. What a good question… I have no clue, but I am curious to see who weighs in.

  2. If you don’t have an Extraordinary Minster of the Eucharist in the parish, and if I was pastor, I’d depute somebody. In rural areas, even here in Japan, during the winter where one or two priests cover multiple parishes, I can see the situation emerge where the other nearest priest is snowed in and that is your only option. To recall the old Latin tag, “Ecclesia supplex” and the Church is the People of God.

  3. FrMichael says:

    I’ve not had need myself, but hospital-bound priests I have known receive from whoever brings around Communion, either cleric or lay. When I have visited priests in the hospital, I rarely bring Communion, knowing that the local hospitals all have regular Communion ministers assigned.

    Of course, most priests will prefer to celebrate Mass if they are physically and mentally able. It’s surprisingly easy to do so from a hospital bed with the Mass kits and the hospital food tables. I’ve been at a few such Masses, concelebrating once for a dying priest-friend of mine.

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