Saturday, March 7, 2020

Saint Thomas Aquinas on viruses and reception of Holy Communion

"As the great Saint Thomas Aquinas said, the externals of the Most Blessed Sacrament are not essential to but rather accidental to the substance of the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord. The weight and measurement and color and feel and taste and sight… whatever… are accidental. Don’t blame any virus on our Lord Himself, but do blame your lack of care in administering or receiving Holy Communion." (Source:

Any virus transmitted by means of handling the Eucharist is "external" and "accidental" to the substance of the Lord's Body and Blood. Being concerned about avoiding illness is not a sacrilege or disrespect. That's why you should not receive on the hand. 

Father William Saunders says "No!" to Communion on the hand in this recent interview with Raymond Arroyo.

"You have more germs on your hand than you do on the tongue...The priest isn't gonna hit your tongue." But, he adds, "Watch the snappers!", referring to those persons who prematurely shut their mouths before the priest has fully removed his hand after placing the host on their tongue.

Fast forward to 55:37 to hear his comments:

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