Withdrawing chalice fosters disunity


I am incensed at the regressive action of the bishop in Phoenix, who withdrew the chalice from the faithful.

How does only offering the chalice “on special occasions” give the weekend assembly a deeper understanding of their unity in Christ? Or are the average parishioners not worthy in Phoenix, and only ordinations, retreats and weddings deemed occasions of full unity?  That is an insult to the body of Christ faithfully gathered every Sunday.

If anything, allowing the chalice only to the leaders of the assembly, the priest and deacon, demonstrates a dis-unity, separating the faithful from its ministers.

I know that grace is present in each form of Holy Communion. And it is true that Church documents name only a few occasions for Communion under both kinds rather than broadly allowed. But other occasions were not forbidden. With 50 years of experience after Vatican II, we know that the broader sign rather than the minimal sign deepens faith. This is why Communion under both forms has expanded to become the norm in many dioceses, including our own. Why a bishop would deprive his people of this most sacred sign and call it normal and beneficial is beyond me.


As a member of the Diocesan Liturgical Commission, I know of no interest anywhere in our diocese to make such a ruling, and I would be up-in-arms if there were.

In closing, may I remind your readers that the cathedral in Phoenix also recently forbade girls from serving at the altar.

Gale Francione


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