First Holy Communion
First Holy Communion is generally completed in the 2nd grade or during RCIA for older children and adults.
What is First Holy Communion?
First Holy Communion is the receiving of Jesus Christ in the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist for the very first time.
The Holy Eucharist refers to Christ’s body and blood present in the consecrated host on the altar, and as Catholics we believe that the consecrated host and wine are actually the body and blood, soul and divinity of Christ. The presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist isn’t just symbolic, it’s real.
He who eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, abides in me and I in him. (John 6:57)
What is necessary to receive Holy Communion?
In order to receive Holy Communion, one must be free from mortal sin, to have a right intention, and to obey the Church’s laws on the fast required before Holy Communion out of reverence for the body and blood of Our Divine Lord. However, there are some cases in which Holy Communion may be received without fasting, please see Father Mark if you have questions or concerns about fasting before communion. In addition to this, for one’s First Holy Communion, the sacrament of First Reconciliation must be received and one must have an understanding that they are not consuming bread and wine, but the actual body and blood of Christ.
Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily, will be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. (I Corinthians 11:27)
What are appropriate ways to receive the body of Christ?
The most common way to receive the Holy Eucharist is to cup your hands with one on top of the other making a cradle for the Holy Eucharist to be placed. One may also receive the Holy Eucharist on their tongue. The most important thing to remember is to take your time and place the Holy Eucharist in your mouth before walking away.
What should we do after Holy Communion?
After Holy Communion we should spend some time adoring Our Lord, thanking Him, renewing our promises of love and of obedience to Him, and asking Him for blessings for ourselves and others.