|The Sanctifying Function of the Church » The Sacraments » The Most Holy Eucharist » The eucharistic celebration » Participation in the Most Holy Eucharist
|Any baptised person who is not forbidden by law may and must be admitted to holy communion.
|§1 For holy communion to be administered to children, it is required that they have sufficient knowledge and be accurately prepared, so that according to their capacity they understand what the mystery of Christ means, and are able to receive the Body of the Lord with faith and devotion.
§2 The blessed Eucharist may, however, be administered to children in danger of death if they can distinguish the Body of Christ from ordinary food and receive communion with reverence.
|It is primarily the duty of parents and of those who take their place, as it is the duty of the parish priest, to ensure that children who have reached the use of reason are properly prepared and, having made their sacramental confession, are nourished by this divine food as soon as possible. It is also the duty of the parish priest to see that children who have not reached the use of reason, or whom he has judged to be insufficiently disposed, do not come to holy communion.
|Those upon whom the penalty of excommunication or interdict has been imposed or declared, and others who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to holy communion.
|Anyone who is conscious of grave sin may not celebrate Mass or receive the Body of the Lord without previously having been to sacramental confession, unless there is a grave reason and there is no opportunity to confess; in this case the person is to remember the obligation to make an act of perfect contrition, which includes the resolve to go to confession as soon as possible.
|One who has received the blessed Eucharist may receive it again on the same day only within a eucharistic celebration in which that person participates, without prejudice to the provision of can. 921 §2.
[NB see Authentic Interpretation of canon 917, 11.VII.1984]
|It is most strongly recommended that the faithful receive holy communion in the course of a eucharistic celebration. If, however, for good reason they ask for it apart from the Mass, it is to be administered to them, observing the liturgical rites.
|§1 Whoever is to receive the blessed Eucharist is to abstain for at least one hour before holy communion from all food and drink, with the sole exception of water and medicine.
§2 A priest who, on the same day, celebrates the blessed Eucharist twice or three times may consume something before the second or third celebration, even though there is not an hour’s interval.
§3 The elderly and those who are suffering from some illness, as well as those who care for them, may receive the blessed Eucharist even if within the preceding hour they have consumed something.
|§1 Once admitted to the blessed Eucharist, each of the faithful is obliged to receive holy communion at least once a year.
§2 This precept must be fulfilled during paschal time, unless for a good reason it is fulfilled at another time during the year.
|§1 Christ’s faithful who are in danger of death, from whatever cause, are to be strengthened by holy communion as Viaticum.
§2 Even if they have already received holy communion that same day, it is nevertheless strongly suggested that in danger of death they should communicate again.
§3 While the danger of death persists, it is recommended that holy communion be administered a number of times, but on separate days.
|Holy Viaticum for the sick is not to be unduly delayed. Those who have the care of souls are to take assiduous care that the sick are strengthened by it while they are in full possession of their faculties.
|Christ’s faithful may participate in the eucharistic Sacrifice and receive holy communion in any catholic rite, without prejudice to the provisions of can. 844.
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