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July 10, 1998     The Message
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July 10, 1998

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ly 10, 1998 i The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 11 The anointing of a priest's hands By FATHER JOHN DIETZEN Catholic News Service Question: I am an extraordinary eucharistic rain- our parish. Recently, two people have told to receive Communion from me other sisters or lay ministers. ' both claim the priest's hands are anointed to give Communion, and no one else do it. don't believe this. I asked our pastor; he just " are wrong, but didn't explain further. What ;about? (New York) Answer: The objection you heard was one raised the practice of having nonordained minister Communion was restored in the 130 years ago. not heard this argument, however, for near- until a few months ago when it was certain periodicals and at least one new so- Catholic" prayerbook I have seen. your pastor said, people who make this claim r about the ordination of priests are wrong. It's just bad erroneous thinking, theologically and liturgically, and a surprising lack of knowledge of history. The symbolism of placing oil on a person, whether at baptism, confirmation, anointing of the sick or ordi- nation, is not intended as a particular sanctification of that part of the body. It signifies rather, as it did even in the Old Testament, a consecration and dedication of that individual to an exalted position in the religious life of the people. In the Christian life, of course, that is directed to the spiritual lives of the family of Christ. Jesus himself is called the Christ, the one chris- tened or anointed by the Father to a role and mission of unique dignity. Obviously, a central function of the ordained priest is to preside at the eucharistic liturgy, to make possible the celebration of the unbloody renewal of the death and resurrection of our Lord by the Christ- ian community. The anointing of his hands at ordination, howev- er, is not directly related to the priest's giving Com- munion any more than it is to the forgiveness of sins or any other essential responsibilities which are his as leader of a Christian people. If we need further clarification and certainty on the matter, we have it from the fact that for 1,200 years or so -- more than half the life of the church -- any Christian commonly gave Communion to other Christians. People took Communion in their hands at Mass, gave it to each other and ministered the Eucharist to family or friends at home who could not be present at Mass. No one considered this in any way disrespectful. The problem arises, of course, because receiving only on the tongue was what all of us older Catholics grew up with. It seems to me the hand is no less holy than the tongue. The incredible truth is that our Lord gave his body and blood as our spiritual food and drink in the first place. From that viewpoint, at least, it seems ridiculous to make a big case out of which part of our body touches the host first. A free brochure answering questions Catholics ask about- receiving the holy Eucharist is available by sending a stamped, selfl-addresd envelope to Father John Dietzen, Box 325, Peoria, Ill. 61551. Questions for this column shouM be sent to Father Dietzen at the same address. DUBOIS COUNTY BANK ] J MEMBER OLD NATIONAL BANCORP Member FDIC FIVE STAR SERVICE BANK GOT WHAT YOU NEED! Wheelchairs Walkers Lift Chairs n Medical Supply 415 Vigo,Vincennes 1-800-274-9685 or 882-3636 Your RED WING HEADQUARTERS RANEY'S SHOESTORE 320 E. Main - Washington I MUENSTERMAN S ! FIRESTONE SERVICE, INC. 1400 w, Franklin Evansville, IN 424-5000 g) 'Meyer, people of Heart Church invite Sacred Heart Church -SUMMER SOCIAL Sunday, July 19 On the Parish Grounds Franklin Street and Mt. Vernon Avenue (hicken or Ham Dinners bressing and Dumplings will be Served beginning at 11:00 a.m. ! our air-conditioned cafeteria arryouts will also be available. $1,900 C,h,,,IPrU,, i be given away! for the Whole Family! .lfl00e Prize ........ , ,,evtr/,Imr! Wo00h mentioning '7' , '. '.7'/; 2-.: Duhns Family of the Month The Jerry and Maureen Duhn family has been named "Family of the Month" by the Knights of Columbus Council 565, Evansville. Jerry Duhn has been a member of the Knights of Colum- bus for 11 years. He is a Eucharistic Minister at Christ the King Church, Evansville, and a member of the parish Men's Club. He is an assistant scoutmaster at Troop 312. Maureen Duhn teaches Natural Family Planning. Maureen and Jerry are active in the pro-life arena. They are the parents of four children who attend Christ the King Elementary and Re, itz Memorial High School. Collection for Latin America The annual collection for the Church in Latin America is held Saturday and Sunda); July 11 and 12, at many parishes in the Diocese of Evansville. In Latin America, there is an average of one priest for every 12,000 Catholics. The collec- tion helps provide training for lay leaders, who play a vital role in celebrating the Word of God in rural villages. Contributing to the collection is described as "one way that we stand in solidarity with the Church in the southern hemi- sphere," by Father James J. Ronan, executive director of the Secretariat for Latin America, the United States Catholic Con- ference and National Conference of Catholic Bishops. Summer social schedule corrected Four Summer Social listings in the July 3 issue of the Mes- sage listed incorrect dates. Information was erroneously drawn from the 1997 schedule, instead of the revised 1998 calendar. Listings in the Bulletin Board this week are correct. Summertime: ls the qivin" easy? Living simply is rarely simple, according to Gerald h, ersen, national coordinator of Alternatives for Simple Living. "Our hope is that people can learn ways to simplify, their lives so that they are not overtaken by stre*3s, debt and guilt." A free copy of his organization's Summer catalog is avail- able by calling toll-free (800) 821-6153. The catalog contains many resources, and also introduces the 1998 edition of Alter- natives" most widely read Christmas resource, "Whose Birthday Is It, Anyway?" Angels from the Vatican in SL Louis The hwisible Made Visible: Angels from the ttican, an exhib- it of artworks from the Vatican, continues through Aug. 2 at the St. Louis Art Museum. For hotel reservations, avisitor's guide and information about tickets, call (800) 91643040. * Complete I Auto Interiors I , Conrtible Tops ! I I II I I Main Street Pharmacy 2t7 EManSL.  Phone: 2545141