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Q: For the reception of Holy Communion, should there always be a paten?

A: In both the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite Mass, the Church assumes the use of the Communion plate; the paten is the vessel holding the hosts. The General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) includes the Communion plate in the list of things to be prepared for Mass (see n. 118c). The instruction Redemptionis Sacramentum also mentions it, citing GIRM, n. 118: “The Communion plate for the Communion of the faithful should be retained, so as to avoid the danger of the sacred host or some fragment of it falling” (n. 93). Neither document stipulates that is to be used specifically or only when Holy Communion is received on the tongue.

 

From the April 2018 Bishops’ Committee on Divine Worship Newsletter

The Editors