Is a Mass still valid
if none of the laity receive Holy Communion?
Answer / Resources:
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Yes, the Holy
Sacrifice of the Mass validly occurs whether or not the laity receive Holy
Communion. The essence of Mass is the Consecration, NOT Communion. In fact, "It
is a Protestant concept that the culmination of the service is communion." By
means of a poor analogy, note that a sporting event occurs whether or not
spectators are present.
As stated by Pope Pius
"[A]s all know,
the integrity of the [Eucharistic] Sacrifice only requires that the priest
partake of the heavenly food. Although it is most desirable that the people
should also approach the holy table, this is not required for the integrity of
the [Eucharistic] Sacrifice... They, therefore, err from the path of truth who
do not want to have Masses celebrated unless the faithful communicate; and those
are still more in error who, in holding that it is altogether necessary for the
faithful to receive Holy Communion as well as the priest, put forward the
captious argument that here there is question not of a [Eucharistic] sacrifice
merely, but of a sacrifice and a supper of brotherly union, and consider the
general communion of all present as the culminating point of the whole
celebration. Now it cannot be over-emphasized that the Eucharistic Sacrifice of
its very nature is the unbloody immolation of the divine Victim [Christ], which
is made manifest in a mystical manner by the separation of the sacred species
and by their oblation to the eternal Father. Holy Communion pertains to the
integrity of the Mass and to the partaking of the august Sacrament; but while it
is obligatory for the priest who says the Mass, it is only something earnestly
recommended to the faithful." (Pope Pius XII, "Mediator Dei", 1947 A.D.)
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