Mother Teresa: On receiving Holy Communion in the Hand
Clarification about Mother Teresa's alleged saying: "The thing that makes me the saddest ..."
Regarding receiving Holy Communion, the Church states:
“Although each of the faithful always has the right to receive Holy Communion on the tongue, at his choice, if any communicant should wish to receive the Sacrament in the hand, in areas where the Bishops’ Conference with the recognitio of the Apostolic See has given permission, the sacred host is to be administered to him or her. However, special care should be taken to ensure that the host is consumed by the communicant in the presence of the minister, so that no one goes away carrying the Eucharistic species in his hand. If there is a risk of profanation, then Holy Communion should not be given in the hand to the faithful.
(From the CONGREGATION FOR DIVINE WORSHIP AND THE DISCIPLINE OF THE SACRAMENT - INSTRUCTION Redemptionis Sacramentum; On certain matters to be observed or to be avoided regarding the Most Holy Eucharist)
Mother Teresa would not have contradicted the Church. On the mode of receiving Holy Communion, she wrote to her sisters: “This is like the permission of the Bishops given some years ago for receiving Holy Communion in the hand. It is allowed, but not an order, … as M.C.s, we have chosen to receive Holy Communion on the tongue. If questioned about [it], do not enter into discussion – “let every spirit praise the Lord” – but let us pray that all be done for the greater glory of God and the good of the Church.”
You quoted "Wherever I go in the whole world, the thing that makes me the saddest is watching people receive Communion in the hand." This statement does not seem authentic to us. We have never heard Mother Teresa saying these words nor read them in her writings. One thing that Mother Teresa used to repeat very often was: “…The greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child, a direct killing of the innocent child, murder by the mother herself… the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion.”
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